Kylian Mbappe, the star forward for the French soccer team Paris Saint-Germain, is one of the premier stars of the game in the entire world. If ever soccer does not work out for him, he might have a career in the other football.
In a viral video on the official NFL account, the soccer superstar illustrated the connection between what the Britishers call football and what Americans know as football.
Super Bowl MVP Cooper Kupp, fresh off a three-year extension and that Super Bowl victory, knelt down to hold the ball for the PSG star. Mbappe, from a few paces back, crept up and kicked the ball.
It flew past the camera crew watching closely and nestled into the net for an easy 40-yard field goal. The pair were at SoFi Stadium in California, the home of the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers.
Mbappe seemed to kick the ball with ease, suggesting he might be capable of nailing even longer field goals. He didn't even start from as far away as most kickers. So, with more momentum, who knows how far the ball would travel?
The crossover between soccer and football has helped football teams for a long time. A lot of NFL kickers, perhaps most notably Josh Lambo, played soccer before moving into football.
In high school and even college, the kicker on a football team is often a soccer player primarily who is lending their talents to the football team.
Kickers are an important position on the football field that is often overlooked, but the ability to nail field goals can directly lead to wins and the inability can translate to losses.
Kylian Mbappe's rise to fame
There's a good reason Kylian Mbappe was chosen to make this promotional video with Cooper Kupp. Besides, perhaps, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, Mbappe is the most well-known soccer player around the world.
He's also one of the highest paid soccer players in the world, making a whopping $23 million a year. He rose to prominence thanks to an incredible run with France in the 2018 World Cup.
The Frenchman became the second youngest soccer player ever, behind the legendary Pele, to win one of soccer's most prestigious trophies. Mbappe was 19, which made him the first teenager to score in the World Cup in 60 years.
Cooper Kupp's rise to fame
Cooper Kupp, Mbappe's kicking partner in the video, had a much slower rise to fame. Kylian Mbappe was 19 when he won the World Cup, but when Cooper Kupp was 19, he was in college at Eastern Washington University, unsure if football held his future.
The Rams eventually drafted Kupp in the third round of the 2017 draft, which is proving to be an incredible steal. In that draft, Kupp was taken after Corey Davis, Mike Williams, John Ross, Zay Jones, Curtis Samuel, and JuJu Smith-Schuster.
Kupp continued to get better every year until finally breaking out in 2021. His pairing with Matthew Stafford proved to be essential as the Rams would go on to win the Super Bowl, in which Kupp caught the winning touchdown.