Almost two years ago to the day Valentine Holmes and Jason Taumalolo turned up to Loyola High School near downtown Los Angeles, put on a pair of American football cleats for the first time and worked out for two hours in front of scouts from 14 NFL teams.
The scouts were impressed by some facets of how the NRL stars performed.
Other aspects were sub par.
The scouts, surprisingly, were disappointed with Holmes' speed.
Holmes, who stands 185cm tall and weighs 90kg, was earmarked at the 2016 workout as a wide receiver or safety but clocked a slow 4.6 seconds in the crucial 40-yard dash.
That time would not have made the top 100 at this year's NFL Combine where college prospects attempted to impress NFL teams.
The best at the combine were cornerbacks Denzel Ward, Parry Nickerson and Donte Jackson who all sizzled with 4.32 seconds while linebackers that dwarf Holmes, like 196cm tall, 113kg Tremaine Edmunds, eclipsed him with 4.54 seconds.
The top wide receiver, DJ Chark, and safety, Troy Apke, both ran 4.34.
In Holmes' defence college players spend weeks or months fine-tuning their 40-yard and other drills for the combine.
Holmes and Taumalolo had also just touched down in Los Angeles on a flight from London and were battered and bruised after playing in the World Cup final and a long NRL season.
They were in cleats they were not used to and asked to perform NFL drills with next to no preparation in front of an imposing group of scouts from teams including the Philadelphia Eagles, Indianapolis Colts, Kansas City Chiefs, Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks.
The 2016 workout organiser Jeffrey Foster, who is president of Indianapolis-based National Football Scouting, said NFL-bound college players often messed up the three cone drill and asked to do it a second time.
Not Holmes and Taumalolo.
"Both players were told what to do, they did it one time and they were done which I think speaks highly of them and their ability to listen, learn and to perform what probably was a lot of pressure," Foster said.
The Philadelphia Eagles scout said the NRL experience they possessed was attractive to NFL teams.
"They are playing a world level so that gives them an advantage," the Eagles scout said.
Holmes does have a path to the NFL that is tailor-made for someone with his talent and lack of American football experience.
The International Player Pathway program allows eight NFL teams to carry an additional overseas player on their practice squads.
Holmes would have take a significant cut in pay.
NFL Pathway players earn $US129,200 ($A177,100) a season.
There is speculation Holmes is dabbling with the NFL to leverage more in his next NRL contract whether it is with the Cronulla Sharks or North Queensland Cowboys
The 23-year-old could pocket $A800,000 to $A1 million a season if he sticks with the NRL.
Australian Associated Press