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Ryan Mayer

Playing professional football is difficult enough as is. Being an NFL lineman, while also studying to finish your medical degree, seems impossible simply due to the amount of time needed to maintain excellence in both. However, Kansas City Chiefs offensive lineman Laurent Duvernay-Tardif proved that it is in fact possible, earning his degree from McGill University over the weekend.

The Chiefs drafted Duvernay-Tardif in the sixth round of the 2014 Draft out of McGill University, becoming just the second player ever to be drafted from the school. Over the course of the last four years he has split his attention between playing for the Chiefs and studying for his degree. Now, that can all stop, as Duvernay-Tardif told ESPN recently.

“Since the day I got drafted, I promised myself I was going to finish my studies and get that MD while I was still playing,” Duvernay-Tardif said recently. “It’s one of those life projects that you promise yourself you’re going to accomplish, and I’m on the verge of doing it, so I’m pretty excited.

“But right now, football is my main priority. I want to focus and see how good I can be. I’m putting medicine on hold in order to really maximize my opportunity in the NFL. I love playing football. For all of those who sometimes doubt that I really want to be here because I’ve got a medical degree, having a really strong Plan B and still playing football shows how much I really love the game. I love being out there with the guys. I love the chemistry we have in the locker room. Being out there is a privilege.”

Duvernay-Tardif has worked his way into being a starter for the Chiefs. After not playing during his rookie season, he has started 38 of the 41 games he’s played in over the past three seasons.

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