Few would have expected a magician out of Philadelphia Eagles long snapper Jon Dorenbos, a two-time Pro-bowler. But the NFL player managed to stun the audience and the judges on NBC’s America’s Got Talent 2016 auditions on Tuesday night.
Judge Howie Mandel, being a football fan himself, recognized the ace footballer right away, as he walked up to the stage. Dorenbos then introduced himself, saying that he has been doing magic and comedy every offseason.
“As much as we can achieve, there’s always new beginnings, and there’s always new things to do,” Dorenbos said during the America’s Got Talent 2016 auditions, as quoted by the People. “So in the off-season, I tour around and do magic and comedy.”
Dorenbos told the judges that it all began when his father was convicted of murdering his mother and that he was fascinated by magic since childhood. When asked why he was willing to pursue magic despite a successful career in football, he replied jokingly that NFL actually stands for “Not For Long.”
“Well, let’s be honest. The NFL stands for ‘not for long,’ so I’ve been lucky here,” he said. “You’ve always got to have a back-up plan, and this is a pretty good one.”
He then proceeded with his act, a bewildering card tricks. The America’s Got Talent 2016 judges were visibly amazed by his performance, including Simon Cowell, who is known for giving harsh comments.
“I don’t know how the hell you did that because I could see [the card] never moved,” Cowell finally said, as quoted by the Los Angeles Times. “For someone who doesn’t do this professionally, it was so slick, so fast. Your dialogue is great. It’s not a trick, it’s magic. It was amazing.”
The Philadelphia Eagles franchise also threw its support behind the multi-talented player on social media, praising his performance on America’s Got Talent 2016 auditions.
“@JonDorenbos has done some magic tricks in the locker room as well that left me speechless. You’re truly talented and crushed it,” teammate Brandon Brooks wrote on the team’s Twitter page.