Christian Wade has been a handed a lifeline to his NFL dream.
The former Wasps and England rugby union winger was released by the Bills yesterday as they cut their squad to its 53-man limit for the NFL season.
But today (Sunday) the 29-year-old was named in the 17 players added to the Bills practice squad.
A statement from the Bills said: “Christian Wade returns to the practice squad as the team’s 17th member since he is part of the NFL international players program’.
Buffalo Bills writer Bradley Gelber (BG) from USA Today/TheBillsWire told CoventryLive what being part of a practice squad means during an interview a year ago.
He said: “Essentially the practice squad is what the name is, it’s a group of 10 players that is allowed to practice with the team and work out with the team, be in team meetings, but they’re not allowed to suit up on game day and they cannot participate in the actual games.
“Typically this is used as a training ground for younger players or new players in Christian Wade’s case, that, perhaps aren’t ready for the main roster to actually play in games. It allows them to still be part of the team in a sense.”
News of his initial release was met by a number of rugby fans showing their willingness for Wade to return to the sport on Twitter.
Alex Lancaster (@Alex90Lan) said: Always a spot back home if all else fails #OnceAWaspAlwaysAWasps
Matt Williams (@MWIncorporated) shared a meme saying: “Bring him home.”
Stephen Phillips (@StevePhillipsXV) Tweeted: “Such a shame for Wade. Welcome him back to the Premiership with open arms though.”
Rugby website ruck.co.uk reported that Wade had been offered a ‘generous offer from Leicester Tigers’ according to an unnamed ‘source in the USA’.
Wade was third in the all-time Premiership tryscorers list with 82 when he shocked the sporting world by quitting Wasps and rugby union in October 2018.
He was signed by the Buffalo Bills last year, and with his first touch in a pre-season game against the Colts, Wade scored a 65-metre touchdown.