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Eagles long-snapper Jon Dorenbos wows 'AGT' judges, teammates with magic

PHILADELPHIA -- Simon Cowell isn’t all that intimidating -- not when you line up across from angry 300-pound men for a living.

That’s what Philadelphia Eagles long snapper Jon Dorenbos does during his day job. Dorenbos, 35, has been snapping on punts and placekicks for 14 NFL seasons, the past 10 with the Eagles. Normally, he gets noticed only when something goes wrong.

But Dorenbos got noticed Tuesday night for something that went very right.

He appeared on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” braving a panel of Cowell, Howie Mandel, Mel B and Heidi Klum. Dorenbos performed card tricks that had the often skeptical judges wide-eyed in wonder.

The judges weren’t alone. Dorenbos’ teammates were watching, and why not? They have seen him perform spontaneously in the locker room over the years.

Dorenbos’ story is as unbelievable as his magic tricks. When he was 12, his father killed his mother at the family home near Seattle. Alan Dorenbos served 11 years in prison before being released in 2006. Jon does not have a relationship with his father.

While being raised by extended family, Dorenbos found solace in learning and performing magic tricks. He never stopped, all through his college days at Texas-El Paso and NFL stops in Buffalo, Tennessee and Philadelphia. Dorenbos has a side business combining magic with motivational speeches.

“The NFL stands for Not For Long,” Dorenbos told the judges on “America’s Got Talent.”

“You have to have a backup plan. This is a pretty good one.”