Rory on NFL game: 'Most impressive athletes in the world'

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Rory McIlroy during Wednesday's news conference at the Tour Championship. (Getty)

ATLANTA – On Sunday following the final round of the BMW Championship Rory McIlroy joined a handful of players who attended the Denver Broncos game against the Indianapolis Colts and jokingly questioned why NFL players wore pads and helmets.

On Wednesday at the Tour Championship the world No. 1 had a different take.

“I was just making a comparison to rugby,” he smiled. “The hits are so big and the speed is so . . . obviously you see why they need pads and helmets.”


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McIlroy joined Rickie Fowler and Graeme McDowell on the sideline at the game and was allowed into the locker room after the Broncos’ 31-24 victory as a guest of Denver quarterback Peyton Manning.

Being that close to the action and the athletes was an eye-opening experience for the Northern Irishman.

“They’re just the most impressive athletes and sport in the world, definitely,” he said. “Some of the running backs and wide receivers, it really is. You have to have it all in that game.”