Justin Reid and Keion Crossen are spending plenty of extra hours in online classrooms this 2020 offseason.
With the NFL closing team facilities due to COVID-19, teams across the league are now conducting their offseason programs virtually. On top of that, both Reid and Crossen had enrolled in university classes which have now also transitioned online. It's been an adjustment for both players, who didn't expect to be juggling both an online degree and online offseason course simultaneously.
"To be honest with you, I'm more of an in-class type of guy," Reid said. "I'd much rather be sitting in the classroom physically. So that way I don't have any excuses for getting distracted. You know, right now it's easy to kind of just pause the video. But the nice part about it, too, is that it does allow me to still do all the other things like be out with my philanthropy and still focus on training and still be able to do all my classwork at the same time. So it is a little bit different. I'm not the biggest fan of online school, but, you know, it's the new normal is what we've got."
The Texans defensive backs are in school full-time for two very different degrees. Immediately after his rookie season, Reid returned to Stanford to finish up his engineering degree. The third-year safety has been balancing his coursework with team Zoom meetings and workouts, but still trying to keep these weeks and months as "normal" as possible.
"I stay active, I still do a lot of things my rehab and treatment," Reid said. "I enrolled back in school so I'm a full-time student online right now at Stanford University trying to earn my undergrad in industrial engineering. I still try and find ways to be active in the community in ways where, you know, you're able to still respect the guidelines put out by the government with social distancing to try and keep everyone safe, but still find ways to help people who are in need of some support. So I still have my hands full."
Crossen, acquired in a trade from the New England Patriots before the start of the 2019 season, recently decided to get his master's in theology at Liberty University. His original plan was to study theology as an undergraduate degree, but ended up changing to a double major in marketing and sports management at Western Carolina. The Texans cornerback and special teams ace felt like now was the right time to go back to school, following his second NFL season and first with the Texans.
"I was like, hey if I'm going to do it, let's do it," Crossen said. "I started and I mean, it's been it's been a growing process. It's been a growing pain, too, because no different formats. You've got to type and write in. But other than that, I've learned a lot. You know, I've got to meet some good people in most importantly, I'm growing in my faith. So that's really, really good."
Crossen also donated $19,000 to the Western Carolina Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) to help keep the ministry afloat during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Texans 2020 virtual offseason workout program takes place April 27 through May 15.