LeBron James Is Too Old for The NFL: How MVPs Stack Up to Other Sports

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Source: Keith Allison / Flickr

Source: Keith Allison / Flickr

LeBron James was born on December 30, 1984. That makes him 29 years old. While it’s been good fun in recent years to run a thought experiment about how James would fare in, say, the NFL — he’d make a heck of a tight end, some figure, especially since players like Jimmy Graham and Tony Gonzalez played college basketball. And James himself has said he’d like to play in at least one NFL Game before his legacy is written. Not to mention that the idea of the cross-sport athlete has been ingrained in the public consciousness since the days of Bo Jackson, Danny Ainge, and Deion Sanders, but the fact is now he may simply be too old.

Of course, there’s no way an NFL front office doesn’t take a hard look at the marketing and attention that would come with signing LeBron to the team (especially if the team is somewhat local to Miami like, say, the Dolphins), because it can’t feasibly turn out any worse for your team than signing someone like Tim Tebow. Turns out, though, that if LeBron did wind up throwing on an NFL helmet, they’d probably have to bring him a walker and a stack of “back in my day” themed apparel — James is already older than nearly 80 percent of the National Football League.

Reuben Fischer-Baum and the fine folks over at Deadspin crafted a tool they’ve helpfully/terribly titled “How Many Pro Athletes Are Younger Than You.” Instead of bumming around all depressed because we’ll be forced to acknowledge our own mortality and fading dreams of sports superstardom, we decided to check out how the last two MVPs from each of the Big Four of American Sports (the NFL, the NBA, the NHL and the MLB) compared to their peers and fellow professional athletes.

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