Harlequins sign USA centre and former NFL fullback Paul Lasike

Harlequins have signed Utah Warriors centre and former NFL fullback Paul Lasike.

Lasike spent two years in the NFL – 2015 and 2016 – with the Arizona Cardinals and the Chicago Bears before moving to rugby with the Utah Warriors in 2017.

He has captained the American rugby union side Utah Warriors since the start of the year.

Lasike said: “It was an honour to be asked to join such a prestigious club as Harlequins and I am delighted to be joining the club.”

The New Zealand-born player has enjoyed success on the international stage having been capped six times by the USA Eagles. He was part of the USA team that defeated Scotland in June.

Harlequins’ Head of Rugby Paul Gustard added: “He adds something different to a talented group of centres that we have at the club. I am sure the fans will enjoy his approach to the game.”

Head Coach of the Utah Warriors Alf Daniels believes that the move shows the growing strength of Major League Rugby in America.

“Paul signing with the Quins just shows that the MLR has talent. There is talent in America and the MLR is the best path forward to develop that talent,” he said.

Harlequins next take to the field in a friendly against the Jersey Reds on August 11.