In October, Kirk Barron was with family when he heard his name called at the XFL draft.
“I was living in Denver at the time and I went home for it, back to Mishawaka, Indiana and I was with my mom, my girlfriend, and my grandma,” he said. “I just heard my name called, and it was just instant relief knowing that I was still playing the game.”
“I’ve always wanted to be drafted and, you know, that was pretty cool to hear your name called.”
Like many college football players, Kirk graduated with a burning desire to play pro football. Of course, fulfilling that dream became one of the great challenges of his young life.
After a successful career with the Purdue Boilermakers, under head coach Jeff Brohm, Barron set his sights on the NFL. He was signed as an undrafted free agent with the Miami Dolphins in May 2019, but was waived later that month.
Over the summer, the XFL came calling in the way of an invitation to attend the June 14th XFL Summer Showcase in New York. Barron attended the showcase, and XFL coaches took a good look at the offensive line specialist.
Later in the summer, less than two weeks before their season opener, the Cincinnati Bengals signed Barron to add depth to their offensive line. However, in a move that must have frustrated the young football player, they waived him a few days later.
Patience brought positive news, as Barron received an invitation to the XFL draft. Soon afterward, he was chosen by the Seattle Dragons on day one of the draft, during the Offensive Lineman phase.
Despite the challenges, Barron remains positive about his road to pro football, and credits his girlfriend and family for motivating him to keep going.
“It’s really hard to explain it. You got the guys like the Russell Wilson’s of the world, or the Tom Brady’s who worked their butts off. They’re also extremely lucky because they needed an opportunity or a shot. And the thing with playing professional football is that you got to keep to it. Just because someone says no at the time, does not mean that that’s the end of your career,” Barron remarked. “I know I wouldn’t be in the XFL right now and still playing football. If it wasn’t for my family or my girlfriend. I mean they definitely pushed me. They know how much the game of football means to me and they pushed me to keep with it. I’m very grateful that they did.”
Barron has now been through a mini camp and a training camp with the Dragons and he is ready to travel to the team’s inaugural game in Washington, DC this Saturday.
As for the Dragons, Barron believes they are a winning squad.
“Our defense is pretty tenacious, the get after the ball. The offense like to run the ball, I feel like, but we’re not afraid to air it out. We’re pretty balanced… I just think we’re a really complete team.”
As for Barron, one of his jobs is to protect the quarterback.
“You protect him like he’s the President,” he said.
We look forward to seeing Kirk Barron on the field for the Seattle Dragons this Saturday in the XFL opening game.
To hear the entire interview with Kirk Barron, check out the XFL Xtra Podcast – Episode 22