San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Tomsula says Jarryd Hayne beat astronomical odds to make the team’s 53-man squad.
Tomsula said it’s hard enough for Americans who played the game to make an NFL roster, but for a guy from Australia to travel to the US without experience and be successful is unique.
“It’s a tremendous achievement,” Tomsula said.
“I think that’s why people are so enamoured.”
Tomsula said he told Hayne via a text message that he made the 53-man squad.
The coach declined to say if Hayne would start as the punt returner for the 49ers’ first game of the regular season against the Minnesota Vikings.
But, he did say it was Hayne’s all-round skills as a punt returner, his tackling, running the football and other aspects of his play, as well as his dedication to learning the game, that convinced the coaching staff he was an NFL player.
Tomsula also added Hayne had plenty of work to do.
“He’s by no means a finished product,” he said.
“But the type of person he is and the approach he has taken, he’s the kind of player we want here.”