When I entered the NFL in 1994, there was a lot of skepticism around whether or not I could make it in the league. The experts and pundits thought that I was too small and too fragile and couldn't sustain the constant physical pounding that NFL running back's endure. Supposedly the average tenure for a running back in the NFL is two years.
I knew I could make it in the league; I had the confidence, the passion, and the work ethic to excel. But, unlike so many first- and second-round draft picks, I really felt the pressure to have to prove my value. Not only did I make it past the average, I well exceeded it, and had an increasingly productive 11 year career, making it to a Pro Bowl and taking a team to the Super Bowl.
Each year, my goal was to be better than the last and outperform. In the NFL, you typically get rewarded with a new contract based on past performance. I signed three new contracts throughout my career; each one increased significantly in value. I didn't get bigger. I didn't get faster. I didn't learn any new running techniques. I applied a set of value's to achieve this great success: a world class competitive spirit, commitment to my goal, unwavering team work, and a phenomenal work ethic.