Originally posted on Fox Sports
By By Brendon Ayanbadejo  |  Last updated 8/30/13

PITTSBURGH - DECEMBER 20: James Harrison #92 of the Pittsburgh Steelers high fives fans as he walks off the field following the game against the Green Bay Packers on December 20, 2009 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Let's just say the game I grew up loving has not always reciprocated that same love. Before my NFL career started it was almost over, not once, not twice, but thrice. I wasn't drafted. I wasn't even invited to the NFL Combine in 1999 after UCLA won the Pac-10 Conference and being named an All-Conference linebacker courtesy of our head coach, Bob Toledo (I'll address why I am still angry in a later article). At the time, I was a rookie free agent. Right now, the Buffalo Bills are poised to start a rookie free agent at quarterback in Jeff Tuel. So it's not like we can't make it but it definitely is an arduous task. James Harrison the former NFL defensive MVP, couldn't even escape the turk when the Steelers cut him as a free agent his rookie year. Harrison eventually did the carousel that many young players experience, having to play in NFL Europe and with the Ravens before he eventually exploded on the scene with the Steelers. The best thing a rookie free agent can do for himself ...
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