If there’s one position in football that you never hear someone talk about it’s the long snapper, but Jon Dorenbos managed to make a 14-year NFL career out of it.

After spending short stints with the Buffalo Bills and the Tennessee Titans, Dorenbos signed with the Philadelphia Eagles late in 2006 and went on to play the next 10 seasons with the Eagles before he was traded to the New Orleans Saints. Both Dorenbos and Eagles fans were saddened by the news of the trade, but it turns out it was for the better in a much bigger way than just sports.


One month ago today I underwent emergency open heart surgery. My wife never left my side. She held my hand every step of the way. Life is crazy. One min I was a professional athlete, the next min I was fighting for my life. The video in this collage shows how the simplest things in life we sometimes take for granted. May we all be thankful for the beautiful people and world that surround us every day. To the UPENN Cardiac Care Nurses (Silver10) you all are #Saints - thank you! You make this world a better place. #SpecialPeople - Dr Bavaria, whom performed my surgery, I love you man!! You are a genius. You are an artist. You are a savant. Thank you for making valve replacement and aortic aneurysms your thing!! You are the best in the world for a reason. This world is a better place with you in it #ImAlive #goodDay

A post shared by Jon Dorenbos (@jondorenbos) on

The 37-year-old Humble, Texas native recently spoke for the first time since his surgery as he appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. During his time on the show, Dorenbos shared the story of how the trade to New Orleans ended up saving his life and it’s pretty incredible.

Although Dorenbos had to leave the place he called home the previous ten years, he’ll be able to return whenever he wants all thanks to the trade that sent him to New Orleans.  

Dorenbos and his wife, Annalise, recently added a Goldendoodle to their family and named him Saint in honour of the trade that saved Jon’s life.

As for the former Philadelphia Eagles long snapper, you probably aren’t familiar with his work on the field but have most likely seen his magic tricks at some point.

(H/T YouTube/TheEllenShow)