From scaffolder to the Super Bowl: how Australian Jordan Mailata became an NFL star

    Jordan Mailata looks on prior to a Philadelphia Eagles game against the New York Giants.

    (CNN)His mantra was "don't have a plan ... fall forward, don't fall backwards."

    Turns out Jordan Mailata fell on his feet, becoming one of the NFL's best starting left tackles and a vital cog in the Philadelphia Eagles' run to the Super Bowl.
    The hulking Australian admitted that if he'd been told what his future might hold back when he was doing odd jobs to pay the bills in between playing rugby -- including scaffolding, carpentry and demolition to name a few -- he would've laughed at the notion.
      "I'd probably say: 'What shrooms are you taking because I don't know what the Super Bowl is? You're talking about that concert at halftime?'"
        But that's where 25-year-old Mailata finds himself, one victory away from becoming the first Australian to play in a Super Bowl and win a championship ring. His teammate, Arryn Siposs, is in a similar position as the Eagles punter hails from Melbourne.
        Mailata blocks against Detroit Lions linebacker Charles Harris.

        A change

        Born in a Sydney suburb, rugby league was Mailata's first sport.
          However, playing rugby wasn't enough to pay the bills, so he tried his hand at all manner of jobs. "Scaffolder, doing carpentry, demolition, doing whatever I could to pay the bills," said Mailata.
          He played in Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs' Under-18 side -- a professional team -- but in 2014, Mailata collapsed during a preseason session.