"This is my opportunity to break into the league," Ross told reporters before coming to camp. "They told me I had a really good chance to make the team, and I believe in my own abilities. They told me I had to show them I could play. I know that there were some great players who went in the draft, but I thought I should have gone [in the draft] as well. I have a chip on my shoulder, and I am going to prove that I really can play football."
At this weekend's rookie camp, Ross had a strong start in his bid to make the Chiefs' roster. The young running back turned heads immediately, despite his humble path to the NFL.
After attending junior college, Ross played for nondescript Tarleton State, a Divison II school in tiny Stephenville, TX. There, he rushed for over 2,800 yards in two seasons. Ross expected to be drafted in about the fifth round, but draft weekend went by and he didn't receive a call. Opportunity came knocking when the Chiefs called him and invited him to attend mini-camp.
"It's a big experience," Ross said. "It's a faster level up here, and you've just got to do it. You've got to put it in your heart that you can do it and go out and do the best that you can when you can."
What sort of chance does Ross have to make the team?
"I don't know about my chances," said Ross. "I've done everything they've told me to do out there. We'll see."
Ross does have the support of his teammates, including high-profile rookies Tamba Hali and Jeff Webb.
"They're telling me to run hard," Ross said. "Run hard every play. Tamba Hali and Jeff Webb, I practiced with them in New York, and they're 100 percent behind me. They told me to keep going hard."
"I believe in destiny," said Ross. "Don't give up. Try my hardest and finish every play."
"Just don't give up."
Rookie Watch: Derrick Ross
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