From growing up in Brooklyn to his playing days at Syracuse, from not getting selected in the 2006 draft to starting at safety in San Diego, Steve Gregory has never taken anything for granted.
The NFL, after all, can be a tough place. He's happy to still be in it.
''It's been heck of a journey,'' the six-year veteran said. ''I can remember coming from college and just stepping into camp as that guy that's sixth string on the depth chart, and just hoping you could stick around.
''To get to this point in my career where I'm at today, it makes me proud, but there's still a lot of work left ahead of me. I still have a lot of football left to play. I'm still just as motivated and focused as I was back then.''
That's good news for the New England Patriots, because they clearly need a kick-start in the secondary. Something, anything to improve a defense that ranked 31st last year in total yards allowed.
Perhaps Gregory's it.