Football first felt natural to Kenny Easley as youngster in Chesapeake

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Defensive back Kenny Easley of the Seattle Seahawks moves down the field during a game.

CHESAPEAKE, Va. - Tuesday night, Chesapeake native Justin Upton's sliding catch in the 10th inning of the MLB All-Star Game helped seal the American League's fifth straight victory in baseball's midsummer classic.

Six miles away and three decades before Upton was playing baseball for Great Bridge High School in Chesapeake, Kenny Easley was playing football for Oscar Smith High in the same city. Like Upton did in his fourth All-Star appearance Tuesday night, Easley is also getting ready to shine on this summer's national sports stage.

August 5th in Canton, Ohio, Easley will be enshrined as just the 306th member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

During a conference call with NFL media, including News 3 Sports Director Adam Winkler, Easley was asked about those early days back in Chesapeake. When did he first fall in love with football?

1986: Safety Kenny Easley #45 of the Seattle Seahawks walks the field during the 1986 NFL game. (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)

"I started playing organized football when I was 10," Easley recalled. "I played football, basketball and baseball. But when I played football, I wouldn't say it came easy - it just felt natural for me. I don't know why."

Easley has selected his high school football coach, Tommy Rhodes, as his Pro Football Hall of Fame presenter next month in Canton.

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