Training road to the NFL is anything but easy

Retired player turned trainer, Reggie McGill, helps to prepare football players for a future on the gridiron.
Updated: Sep. 20, 2022 at 8:00 AM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - With the Super Bowl around the corner, it has many young football players dreaming about playing in the National Football League. However, actually getting there is a long, hard road.

Just ask retired player, and now trainer, Reggie McGill, from Extreme Speed Training, who helps to prepare football players for a future on the gridiron. McGill played at the University of Arizona, then in the professional ranks. He now loves to help players achieve their dreams. McGill works with young kids, high school and college athletes, and even those getting ready for the NFL Combine.

When it comes to training, McGill says he believes in a three step process:

  1. Strength training in the weight room
  2. Put in the work on the field
  3. Footwork drills for speed and agility

McGill’s sessions always start out friendly, and you’ll always find he has a smile on his face. But don’t let that fool you, because McGill and hard work are synonymous.

Arizona’s Family got to look in on a training session with McGill and one of the top high school offensive linemen in the state of Arizona, Elijah Paige, from Pinnacle High School. Paige is 6′7″, 300 pounds. Paige is anything but slow, in fact, McGill says the modern day lineman has to be agile and quick. “Sometimes when athletes come in, they’ll do a whole session on just ladders,” explains McGill, “Kids need agility, and they have to work on rhythm, timing. The ladders, the mini hurdles will [help] give it to them.”

“You have to be able to stay out there with those edge rushers that run 4.6s and 4.5s, and so you have to be athletic. You have to be able to move. You got to stay lean,” says Paige, “So I’d say that’s a new stereotype of offensive lineman, and that’s a new wave of offensive linemen.” Paige, a high school senior, will head to Notre Dame University next year to play college football. “I love the silent hours in the weight room or on the field when no one else is watching, because what happens in the dark always comes to light,” said Paige about all the hours he invests long before putting on the pads.

Paige said he dreams of playing at the highest level of his sport, and with the Super Bowl in town in just a few months, the inspiration and motivation is at an all-time high for him. “People are going to say things. People aren’t gonna believe in you,” he said. “But you’ve got to keep that in your mind that you can do it, and literally anything that you say you can do, you can do. And, anything’s possible.”

McGill says he believes in Paige. He knows just how much hard work he has invested for years now, and that’s why McGill says he loves to invest in players like Paige. “I feel fulfilled. I feel good my heart. That’s what I want to do. I want to be able to give back help kids out with my experience,” says McGill, “I love getting kids young and bringing them up and then having them go on their way... it is just fulfilling to me to see them doing good in that in their sport that they want to play.”