Less than two weeks ago, Jared Veldheer was coaching high school football. He retired from the NFL back in September — for the second time — and opting to instead coach high school football at East Grand Rapids High School in Michigan.
But soon the NFL came calling again. With the Colts losing left tackle Anthony Castonzo to a season-ending injury and the playoffs on tap, Indianapolis invited Veldheer in for a tryout and signed him to their practice squad on December 31.
Ahead of the Colts’ Wild Card playoff game against the Bills, Veldheer was elevated from the practice squad and named the starter.
Going from high school football coach to NFL playoff starter was a pretty big jump. But, how about doing it twice…in the same postseason? That’s what just happened.
OT Jared Veldheer, who started for the Colts’ on Saturday, is now signing with the Packers, per source.
Veldheer will be the first player in NFL history to play two postseason games for two playoff teams. He is allowed to sign with GB because he was on the Colts’ practice squad.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 11, 2021
As ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports, Veldheer is signing with the Packers, making him the first player in NFL history to play for two postseason games in the same playoffs.
The rules put in place this season due to the COVID-19 pandemic have allowed for this bit of history because the Colts were able to call up Veldheer without placing him on the active roster. Once he was reverted back to the practice squad, he was fair game for the Packers.
Veldheer started his NFL career with the Raiders as their pick in the third round of the 2010 draft. He became the team’s full time starting left tackle as a rookie and held onto the job for four seasons.
When his contract was due to be up in 2014, he expressed great interest in returning, but soon complained that then GM Reggie McKenzie cut off communication, so he signed a free agent deal with the Arizona Cardinals.
The 33-year-old is now in his 12th NFL season, having started 120 career games for five different teams, including six playoff games. This is his second stint with the Packers as he signed with them late in the 2019 season as well.