Wang looks to open doors for Chinese players in NFL

10:09, April 27, 2010      

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Ed Wang made history on Sunday by becoming the first player of full Chinese descent to be drafted in the National Football League (NFL).

Wang was selected by the Buffalo Bills in the fifth round. To the Bills, Wang is a promising prospect with a unique blend of size, agility and athleticism. However, before even setting foot on an NFL field, Wang is already a trailblazer for thousands of people in China who never thought they would see a Chinese face in an NFL uniform.

At 6'5" and 315 pounds (1.95m and 143kg), Wang was among the largest offensive linemen selected in the draft. A solid outing at the NFL Combine in February - 5.14 at the 40-yard dash and 29 reps on the bench - and the subsequent Virginia Tech Pro Day on March 18, propelled Wang's stocks, ultimately resulting in his selection by the Bills.

When the call came, Wang was waiting at home with his family.

"I am just really excited and happy that I got the opportunity to come to the Bills," Wang said. "It (being drafted as the first Chinese player) is really important to me. It means a lot to me that I was able to be the first one to do it so. I tooka lot of pride in that."

A tight end in high school, Wang switched to tackle in his third year at Virginia Tech and quickly became the anchor of the Hokies' offensive line. Wang has improved leaps and bounds as time has gone on and his best performances in 2008 were in the ACC Championship game and the Orange Bowl.

He is a relatively big tackle who is blessed with natural athleticism and exceptional bloodlines - both his parents were members of Chinese Olympic teams in the 1970s. His father, Robert Wang, was a high jumper, while his mother, Nancy, ran the 100m hurdles. Wang's brother, David, is a 6-foot-2, 290 pound offensive guard who red-shirted (inactive player for purpose of prolonged athletic eligibility) last year at Virginia Tech. The Wang family made its Chinese television debut on CCTV5's NFL China Blitz last year and his ethnicity has been a major topic of discussion in China and the US.

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