WORCESTER, Mass. -- A second-round selection in 2009, New England Patriots defensive lineman Ron Brace enters a critical point in his career as he attempts to secure a spot on the roster for the final season of his rookie contract.
On Wednesday evening, Brace returned to his alma mater, Burncoat High School in Worcester, Mass., where he spoke to student-athletes at an awards ceremony. During a period where the audience could pose questions, Brace was asked how hard it is to be a professional athlete.
Brace delivered the following response:
"It's hard in (some) aspects. Especially since you have pressure on you. Because if you make one mistake, or even if you don't do anything, you have the media on you saying this and that, spitting out, even though they have no idea what they're talking about," Brace said. "You can get caught up and messed up in that.
"I've read some articles and all that crap where people say that I'm a bust, some that I'm on the bubble on the roster. But you know what? I realize that I'm still on the roster. I'm on something that they've never been on," Brace said to applause.
"I worked hard to get here. They haven't worked like I have. That's the reason why they're never going to be where I've been. I never worry about that. That's what I say is the only hard part. Other than that I just treat it like the same flow like I have been since high school and college. You have to work hard and get better if you're playing this game of football," he said.
More from Brace to come.