The arrests of Aaron Hernandez and Ausar Walcott this week should serve notice to all the rookies attending the league’s rookie symposium this week about the problems NFL players can run into off the field.
A message from new Kansas City Chiefs’ director of player personnel Chris Ballard during the symposium should serve as notice to the rookies of the struggle it will be to remain in the league altogether.
According to Tim Graham of the Buffalo News, Ballard delivered a speech to the rookies attempting to express the difficulty they will face in forging a lengthy career in the NFL.
“Most of you will not be in this league three years from now. I promise you,” Ballard said. “If we had this little get-together again three years from now, I could probably cut the room, and three-quarters of you would not be in it.
“Your talent alone will not let you survive. You understand? It’s got to be more than that.”
Ballard is correct. The average length of an NFL career in little more than three seasons. For rookies entering the league, it’s a concept that’s probably difficult to grasp as most players believe they have the ability to play in the league. The message from Ballard was to inform them it will take more than ability alone to make a career in the league.