Former Henderson State Reddie players Kevin Rodgers and Sean McGrath spoke to the Scrapper football team during a visit to the offseason practice Friday afternoon. Rodgers spoke about kids of high school age being responsible for their future and with hard work can lead them anywhere, while McGrath stressed the importance of being a good student, being gritty and having fun while playing football.
Friday afternoon the Nashville Scrapper football team got a special treat as two former players from Scrapper Head Coach Mike Volarvich’s stint at Henderson State University. Former Reddie quaterback Kevin Rodgers and tight end Sean McGrath visited the Scrappers to teach them about the importance of school and a good work ethic plus participate in a normal off season workout with the team.
Rodgers who has been a part of the Houston Texans organization and now is being looked at by Canadian teams started off the day by praising Volarvich saying he was a big reason to why he was in the position he is in and that every player should pay atttention to Volarvich because he is a great football mind that will be able to help them better themselves both on and off the field.
Rodgers continued by saying, “You are in the driver’s seat to start building your career and what I mean by career is your life. Be the hardest working guy, listen to your parents, listen to your coaches and I know it may be hard to do that being teenagers growing up but your parents know what is best and your coaches know what is best,” Rodgers advised.
Rodgers is from the Dallas area and explained that growing up he was not the biggest guy on the football team. He said after knee sugery in sixth grade he was on the B Team his freshman year, started on the JV team his sophomore year, backed up the varsity quarterback his junior year and did not start until his senior year. “I was fortunate enough to get an offer from Henderson State and hard work is probably one of the biggest things that got me here,” Rodgers said. He continued saying that being the guy that stayed after practice and talking to the coaches allows you the opportunity to soak up more knowledge and know exactly what the coaches want and expect from you. “Work hard and you never know where it will take you.”
McGrath is now an NFL tightend who has been with the Kansas City Chiefs and Seattle Seahawks and then abruptly retired to finish his art degree before making a comeback in the NFL after a year off as a now San Diego Charger.
“It doesn’t matter where you start, it matters where you end and what you do to get there,” McGrath started off. “Number one you are a student athlete and you are never going to play football unless you are a student first. Number two be gritty baby. What are you willing to do that others are not willing to do to be successful? Number three have fun. This game is all about having fun fellas, I wouldn’t be playing this game if it wasn’t fun,” McGrath said. He then ended by saying if you surround yourself with good people the you will succeed in life.
After Volarvich told a quick story about McGrath retiring after a year and the effort he put in to get another chance in the NFL, the two guests of honor participated in three different offseason drills with the Scrappers and ended the day in the weight room helping the players and answering their questions followed by eating grilled burgers with the team and the coaches. The special visit was a welcome change of pace for the “grind” that is offseason football and gave the players something to base their work ethic and strive to be like on and off the field.