'We look at them for inspiration!' NFL veteran says Seattle Seahawks watch rugby for tackling techniques

An American football veteran says he and his NFL teammates look at rugby players as inspiration for tackling and toughness in their own sport.

Michael Bennett, a defensive end for the Seattle Seahawks, stopped by a training to speak to the Auckland Blues today as they prepare for the first round of Super Rugby this weekend.

The 2014 Super Bowl winner told 1 NEWS he was in awe of the players.

"We watch rugby to learn how to tackle better, be better defenders, be better trackers," he told 1 NEWS.

"Everybody in rugby is so tough - the way they play through injuries - we look up to them for inspiration to be tougher players and better defenders."

The 32-year-old said the two sports share a common enemy at the moment with concussion a pressing issue for player safety.

"We try and limit our concussions but both sports have problems with conussions right now," he said.

"Everyone's trying to find a way to protect the integrity of the sport but also the players."

Former NFL player and Paul Lasike made a successful transition from grid iron to rugby over the weekend after making his international debut for USA against Chile.

The NZ-born 27-year-old scored a try and set up another for USA in the 45-13 win.

Michael Bennett said he and teammates were also in awe of rugby players' ability to play through injury. Source: 1 NEWS