Valentine Holmes' chances of playing in the NFL are "extremely difficult", according to two-time New York State sportswriter of the year Bob Glauber.
Glauber, a highly-respected New York-based NFL journalist who covers both the Giants and Jets, outlined the difficult road ahead for Holmes to NRL.com.
However, the New York Newsday columnist admits a vacancy in the kick returner role at the Jets could open the door for the Australian to forge his way on to a 53-man roster this year.
Holmes has been allocated a spot on the Jets' practice squad as part of the International Pathway Program, however, unless he manages to earn his way into the 53-man roster by the start of the season, he will be ineligible to take part in matches in 2019.
"The bottom line, for him to play in a regular season game this year will be extremely difficult," Glauber told NRL.com from New York on Tuesday morning.
"I don't want to say impossible because who knows, but this is a team that we think is on the rise and I don't know who is going to end up winning the kick returning job but a lot of time kick returners need to do other stuff.
"They need to cover kicks, they need to cover punts and they need to block for punts a lot of times.
"If he's a great kick returner, they'll take him - but he's going to have more responsibilities if he's going to make the team as a roster player.
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"He's got four [pre-season] games to prove himself, and that’s not a lot of time. If he flashes in preseason camp and the offseason, they'll give him a good look. They'll definitely know."
Holmes, who received a phone call from Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan informing him of his position on the team, has been listed as a running back/wide receiver/kick returner.
The departure of return specialist Andre Roberts from the Jets to the Buffalo Bills is significant with regards to Holmes' chances of playing this year, so too is his existing relationship with one of the NFL's best offence and special teams coaches.
I think it would be a real long shot .. [But] You never say neverNew York Newsday columnist Bob Glauber
"They lost a pro bowl kick returner, Andre Roberts, who had a great first season with the Jets," Glauber said.
"There definitely is an opening. I notice he [Holmes] worked with Leon Washington in Florida [at IMG academy]. He was a really good player. A good kick returner and good running back - a good all-purpose football player.
"He's learning from a guy who was a very good player who made his mark, at first, on special teams. He's got a really good guide for getting into the NFL, now it's up to him and coaching once he gets into mini-camp and training camp."
While Holmes' best chance of impressing is on special teams as a returner, Glauber insists he needs to have more strings to his bow.
"I would think his best avenue would be as a kick returner," Glauber said.
"A lot of the best special teams players in the NFL are a lot of linebackers because they have that good build, some wide receivers for the speed and some running backs for the agility.
"They do have a very good special teams coach in Brant Boyer. He's about as good as it gets."
Glauber is familiar with the Jarryd Hayne story, having watched with interest when he earned a spot on the San Francisco 49ers roster in 2015.
He regards Hayne as one of the best cross-code athletes he's seen but says his foray into the NFL highlights the challenges confronting Holmes.
"[Jarryd] Hayne was such a good athlete, and was about as good as you're going to get from a position player in their first year," he said.
"I loved watching him. I remember thinking 'wow, this guy is really going to do it, he may last a while'. But that's how difficult that challenge is.
"There's no doubt they have world-class physical skills, but translating them into football after not playing the sport is very difficult."
"Nothing is impossible, but I think it's going to be very difficult in reality. [Holmes] is going to a professional league where people play their whole lives and a lot don't get the chance to get as far as he did.
"It will be a very difficult prospect to get on the 53-man roster. I think it would be a real long shot, but the guy seems to be a great athlete and he's a physical specimen. You never say never."