* *How's everyone doing? This is my first time blogging, so I thought I'd take the time during my first post to tell you a little bit about myself.
Even though I've never written a blog before, I do read them regularly. Most of the blogs I check out relate to music, and some politics. It's nothing too exciting, so I'm hoping this one will be better.
This past offseason has been a little hectic for me. First off, it was a really difficult decision to leave the Baltimore Ravens, where I spent the first four seasons of my career. Because of my familiarity with the organization and my comfort level with the players and coaches, I was close to re-signing with them. We had a lot of camaraderie in Baltimore, and I'll miss the guys a lot.
Ultimately, though, I felt it was time for something new, and I wanted to go somewhere where I felt I could utilize my talents just a little bit more. I feel that I can do that in this defense. So that's probably the biggest thing that attracted me to the Texans.
When I signed with Houston in March, it was my first time in the city aside from when I played here with the Ravens as a rookie in 2002.
In a sense, coming to Texas is a homecoming, since I was born in Killeen. But I only lived there two months before moving. I was an Army brat, so I moved from New Jersey to Hawaii and New Jersey to Hawaii, and then my family finally settled in New York. So I really don't remember much of Texas.
As far as living in Houston, I really like it because it's a big city with so many people, but it's not as condensed as some cities like New York or Chicago. I've had a lot of fun here so far. The night life is great. The people are nice, and I've experienced that southern hospitality.
Although I do like to see the town, I'm a homebody for the most part. When I leave the house, I like to walk through the Galleria sometimes. I don't really buy much of anything. Nothing really fits. Near the Galleria, I like to eat at this place called "Jax Grill" a lot. That's probably where I spend the majority of my spare time.
One thing that has surprised me about Houston—and this probably won't shock a lot of people—is the humidity. I thought I was prepared for it. I heard horror stories. Earlier this offseason, when I thought it was hot, guys would say, "This is nothing, you haven't felt hot." They weren't joking. It was all true. Every time I walk out of Reliant Stadium for practice around 8:30 a.m., that humidity just hits me in the face, and I'm like, 'Are you serious? Is it really this hot and humid already?' Unfortunately, all the rumors I heard were true.
Another thing that has surprised me is the response I've gotten from fans. I've done a few community appearances here and there, and sometimes when I'm out in public, I hear people say, 'Hey, I saw you on the news. I hope you help the team out.' It's been great. People around here are just chomping at the bit for a good season. I think we're going to deliver that this year. So thanks to everyone for making me feel so welcome and at home. I really appreciate that.
I can't tell you how excited I am to run out of that tunnel Saturday and hear the fans go crazy. The thing about the NFL is that any team can win. With free agency, every team has a chance. We have a tremendous amount of talent on this team. I just hope the crowd comes out and supports us and has a chance to see it.
I wish I knew how much I'm going to play this weekend, but I'll find out soon enough. I feel like playing the entire game. What I do know is that when I put my hand down there in that dirt for the first time in front of those fans, I am going to get nervous. I am going to have those butterflies in my stomach a little bit. But at the same time, I am going to be excited and I am going to go out there and do my best to represent Houston.
We're going to get this thing going in the right direction, and I couldn't be happier to be a part of it.