Mike Adams Speaks To 2015 NFL Draft Class

Intro: This past week, Mike Adams joined the 2015 draft picks in Ohio at the NFL’s Rookie Symposium. Adams was a speaker to the first-year players during their weeklong stay in Ohio.

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INDIANAPOLIS – Mike Adams didn't attend the rookie symposium following the 2005 NFL Draft.

As an undrafted free agent, Adams wasn't allowed to attend the annual event, where the NFL welcomes their rookie draft picks for a learning experience on life as a professional football player from every angle.

Adams was allowed in the doors this year, thanks to more than a decade of NFL experience, where his impact has extended deep into communities across the United States.

This past week, Adams was a speaker in front of the 2015 draft picks during the 18th Rookie Symposium.

I wanted to speak at the NFL Rookie Symposium mainly to get the message across to this year's rookie class that the NFL is definitely a privilege. It's something you shouldn't take for granted. Some of the young guys come into the league with a "name" but they don't perform. The NFL is also a business, and they need to understand how hard they need to work when they get to this level in order to succeed.

In my experience, one of the keys to longevity in the NFL has been taking care of myself. I do the little things that people think don't matter…but they really do. I'm talking about things like getting in the cold tub everyday, getting massages twice a week, active release therapy on my legs, I do yoga now. Those are the little things that I do to try to get a slight edge…

… I was an undrafted rookie, and I think I inherited a determination and hunger to succeed. I didn't know my father; well, I met him once when I first turned 25. And I just had this drive of wanting to get out of the situation I was in, which was not a good environment. We had 10 people in a congested apartment in Paterson, NJ. I just didn't want to be in that situation anymore and that drive is what kept me going…

… And I'm also more than a football player. I am a community man and I do give back. I want the kids to realize that there are different levels of success. You might not make it to the NFL, but if you have certain circumstances that require you to be the best barber or the best garbage man, then that's success.

I also started preparing for life after football early. A lot of people tell the rookies to just focus on football when you get started. For me, I wasn't sure about football because I didn't know if I was going to get cut. So I participated in a number of programs, including an ESPN three-week internship in DC, I went to Stanford and Wharton and got entrepreneurial business certificates there, I did the NFL's broadcast boot camp, I did an internship at this weight training facility back home. I like to try different things because I'm not sure what I want to do when I'm done yet. In my opinion, it's never too early to start trying to figure that out and give different things a try.

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