"Good to be a Part"

About 20 months ago, <b>Adrian McPherson's </b>football career seemed all but over. Trouble with alleged gambling and a scandal involving a blank check forced his exodus from Tallahassee. Now, the former Seminole has been working to rebuild his name and his career. Click here for an update.

Adrian McPherson has been working out with his former teammates several times a week. Though he doesn't complete the conditioning routine, A.D. comes out for informal throwing drills.

The reception has been warm.

"It was something I felt like I had to do - to come out here and talk to the coaches and the guys," McPherson told The Territory. "It's good to be part of this again and working with these guys in preparation for their season. They're helping me and I'm helping them."

After searching for another school to play for, McPherson ran into an excellent opportunity in the form of former NFL great Steve DeBerg. After McPherson had enrolled at Tennessee State University, DeBerg held a private workout for the Bradenton native which ultimatly led to his signing to the Arena League's Indiana Firebirds.

"Coach DeBerg helped me elevate by game and helped me to become a better player," said McPherson, who won the league's Rookie of the Year award. "He taught me alot to do the little things."

DeBerg, a former quarterback for the Tampa Bay Bucs and Kansas City Chiefs was fired from his GM position with the Firebirds before his experiment began to fourish.

"It's a different game, most definitely," McPherson said. "It took me about half a year to understand fully what was going on. Overall, it helped me out alot - with my throwing fundmentals and my placement."

McPherson no longer has the slingshot delivery he exhibited in four starts and several mop up roles at FSU. The former Seminole now has a prototypical, over-the-top motion that NFL scouts look with favor upon.

McPherson will play another year for the Firebirds. Beyond that, he's undecided.

"I'm debating," he said. "I'm going to see how things go with quarterbacks around the league and see if it's what I want to do."

For now, A.D. - who weighs in at 214 now - is content to work out and hone his skills. And he's grateful to be able to do that among familiar faces.

"Just to get out here and get back on track is a blessing," he said. "I'm thankful for the opportunity."

As far as the past?

"I don't worry about it. I've put it all behind me. (Craphonso Thorpe) is the only one I talked to day in and day out after I left. But I've put that all behind me."

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