MICHELLE YOUNG
Source: ABC

An NFL Player Is Hoping to Win Over Michelle Young's Heart on 'The Bachelorette'

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Oct. 20 2021, Published 8:37 a.m. ET

Michelle Young and Matt James had undeniable chemistry but their love story was cut short ahead of the Season 25 finale of The Bachelor. Matt gave his final rose to Rachael Kirkconnell and Michelle returned to her home in Minnesota. Viewers were left to wonder what could have been and were sad to see her go. However, it didn’t take long for Michelle to move on.

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In Season 18 of The Bachelorette, she must decide who among a total of 30 men is deserving of her final rose. And after the season premiere aired on Oct. 18, it’s clear that there are quite a few frontrunners in the competition — one of whom is a professional athlete. So, who is the NFL player on The Bachelorette? Here’s what we know.

bryan witzmann michelle young
Source: ABC
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Who is the NFL player on ‘The Bachelorette’?

The Season 18 premiere introduced us to the guys who are going head-to-head for Michelle’s heart. One of the most famed contestants to join the competition is NFL player Bryan Witzmann, and he is giving his fellow participants a run for their roses.

The offensive guard started his professional football career in college. Bryan played for South Dakota State University, where he studied civil engineering. Later, Bryan signed contracts with the Houston Texans, the New Orleans Saints, the Dallas Cowboys, and several other NFL teams but remained a free agent. He was most recently signed to the Atlanta Falcons practice squad but was released a week later.

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Bryan’s Bachelorette bio describes him as “quite the romantic” who loves food and family. According to his profile, “Bryan is a big believer in fate and feels that his being here to meet Michelle is serendipitous and that it's a match truly meant to be!”

bryan-witzmann-michelle-young
Source: ABC
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But Bryan isn’t the only athlete to join Season 18 of The Bachelorette. Here’s what we know about Clayton Echard.

‘Bachelorette’ contestant Clayton Echard played college football, too.

Clayton, who hails from Missouri, played as a tight end for the University of Missouri, where he majored in health science and minored in Spanish and business. Following his graduation, was drafted by the Seattle Seahawks but only played in a few preseason games.

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According to Clayton, he’s serious about finding a “love that will last forever.” Clayton’s bio reads, “His mom is a teacher just like Michelle, and he finds it impressive that she’s made this journey work without having to take time away from her students. Clayton truly believes that Michelle could be the perfect match for him.”

michelle-young-clayton-echard
Source: ABC
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After the Season 18 premiere, Clayton quickly became a fan favorite. So much so that rumors suggest that Clayton may end up becoming the next Bachelor. In an interview with Extra, Michelle vouched for Clayton, insisting that his intentions for being on the show were pure. But she didn’t reveal what happens between them ahead of the season finale.

Michelle told Entertainment Tonight, “What the viewers are going to see is that Clayton’s just genuine. He’s really sweet,” she said. “He came there to find his person. … He deserves to find his person.”

Find out whether Clayton, Bryan, or one of the other Bachelorette contestants wins Michelle’s heart on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on ABC.

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