EDITOR'S NOTE: Texans cornerback Brandon Harris drafted in the second round (60th overall) out of Miami (Fla.), is chronicling his rookie season with periodic diary entries for HoustonTexans.com. It's been a while since I did a rookie diary, so I've got a lot to catch up on. We're about three weeks behind; a lot has happened since then.
The team has been doing wonderful. We've taken over first place in the AFC South, so we've been riding that momentum, riding that wave, for the past three few weeks. It's been pretty exciting around here. You can feel the energy in the building just building up. Even in practice and meetings, guys are coming in, everybody's having a smile on their face, because when you're winning everything is just that much fun. I've had a good time.
I've been having family out the last couple weeks. That's always good. We're getting to the point of the season where I've been here for a while, been in Houston for a while, well adjusted to the city, but you still find yourself missing home a lot, so you try to call home and talk to your parents, talk to your friends as much as possible. But it's always even more exciting when they get a chance to fly out, we get a chance to spend personal time together and I can just talk with them and hang out with them. So for the past couple weeks, that's been cool. That's been keeping me motivated, keeping me sane and stuff like that.
Also, I had a good time on Halloween. Halloween was an exciting time. I found out I was on some show – I was on Shaun Cody's show, I guess. They put it on NFL Network. Man, he was in here dressed up in a Halloween costume, scaring people early in the morning. I can't lie, that was the last thing on my mind I was expecting, for somebody to jump out of the cracks and try to scare me at 5:30, 6 o'clock in the morning. Luckily, my natural instincts didn't come out and I take a swing – that would've really been funny on camera. But it's all in fun, though.
Like I said, the guys here have been having a lot of fun. We do a lot of bonding events, and I've been able to learn a lot from these guys, from the secondary, the way they're playing here. I've been able to learn a lot in practice and in the games and help myself become a better player. I'm still playing hard, practicing hard every day, waiting patiently, man. Sometimes things don't go as you expected to go when you first get in here, but you realize that you'll benefit from it in the long run, being able to learn mentally before you physically actually get out there and perform. Because sometimes, a lot of guys get thrown in the fire early and they may not be ready and they kind of lose confidence a little bit after getting out there and struggling, so I have the ability to learn from a great group of guys and to just try to duplicate what they do when I do get my opportunities to get out there. But all in all, I'm still blessed to be in this position, still blessed to be in the NFL – 21 years old, accomplished a lifelong dream. It's just an exciting feeling every time I get to step in this locker room and suit up for the Texans.
The couple times I did actually get in there and play some on defense, it was exciting. It was like being in college all over again. You're nervous on the sideline when Coach tells you, 'You're in next series.' You feel like a freshman all over again. But the moment I touched that field and the moment I actually got out there and started covering guys and started getting confident and blitzing and making plays, I just felt comfortable. You know you belong out there. You know, 'This is what I do; I'm a football player,' and you feel at home when you're out there. So that was exciting. I'm happy I was able to adjust that quickly and not have a problem with it. It kind of left that taste in my mouth that I'm ready to get back out there, so it's been testing my patience a little bit, just waiting for that next opportunity.
Other than that, though, everything else has been great here, man. I had a chance to do some exciting work in the community. I don't know if I've talked about that since the last time I've been on. I took a trip to the zoo with some of my teammates, working with kids, working with some of the different YMCA groups here in Houston and have just been getting a chance to meet people all the time. I can't emphasize enough how much support we get as a team from the fans here in Houston. I really can't. No matter where you go, no matter after a win or a loss, everybody represents the Houston Texans real well in Houston. That's something I take a lot of pride in, because a lot of other places can't say that.
Follow Harris on Twitter @[**HarrisNOFLYZONE
Brandon Harris rookie diary archive 10/8: Reps increasing
9/23: Trip home to Miami
9/9: Anticipation building
8/26: American Idol dreams
8/19: First game in the books
8/14: Excited for Monday night
8/5: First week of camp