Arian Foster has secured starting job for Texans

HOUSTON - Houston running back Arian Foster wants to get one of his offensive linemen into the Pro Bowl. He certainly wouldn't turn down an invitation for himself.

Foster has emerged as Houston's top running back at training camp. That's a hopeful sign for a team that ranked 30th in the league in the category last season (92.2 yards per game).

Foster capped an impressive training camp with an 18-carry, 110-yard performance against Dallas on Saturday. He's secured the starting job heading into Thursday's preseason finale against Tampa Bay, a remarkable accomplishment after he went undrafted last spring and spent most of last season on Houston's practice squad.

The 6-foot-1, 227-pound Foster rushed for 2,964 yards in four seasons at Tennessee, second on the school's career list. He could've jumped to the NFL after his junior season, but opted to stay in school, a decision he now regrets.

The Vols went 5-7 in 2008, Foster rushed for only 570 yards and his draft stock slipped.

He was invited to play in the Senior Bowl after the season, but pulled a hamstring in the final practice before the game. Foster missed the NFL combine, and couldn't recover in time to impress scouts before the 2009 draft.

He spent the weekend of the draft in Arizona with family and friends, playing cards and golf while the teams made their picks. When he wasn't chosen, Foster virtually gave up hope he would ever play in the NFL.

"Initially, I was just distraught," he said. "As a little kid, you just want to get your name called. That's what you dream about. That didn't happen, so I basically thought that my career was over. I really didn't know anything about the undrafted free agent process. I thought I was done."

But teams did start calling, and the Texans saw enough potential to sign him.

"We saw a lot of talent in college," coach Gary Kubiak said. "There was some knocks (on him) coming out that were keeping him from being a drafted player. We took a chance on him, and we battled him last year with some of those knocks, and he's kind of grown up."

Kubiak encouraged the rookies before training camp began, but Foster's new teammates weren't so supportive in the locker room.

"When I first started coming in here, you could feel the looks like, 'Oh, he's going to be gone.'" Foster said. "You could just feel it. They might not mean it intentionally, but they say it with their eyes. You could see it, you could feel it."

Foster injured his other hamstring at camp, and was demoted to the practice squad. He tried to impress coaches with his work ethic throughout the season, but worried every day that he'd be cut by the following week.

"You're always doubting because on the practice squad, it's like you're expendable, very expendable," he said. "If they need somebody, and they need room, you're the first to go. That's hard living like that. It's tough, but you try to make it so they don't want to let you go."

While Foster quietly worked, Houston unsuccessfully searched for a dependable running back. Ryan Moats and Chris Brown fizzled, and Steve Slaton, who led all rookie rushers in 2008, fumbled too much the next season and missed the last five games with a neck injury.

The Texans finally turned to Foster, who ran for 218 yards in Houston's final two games, both victories.

"When the opportunity came," he said, "I made the most of it."

Foster said that he's got something to prove to every team that snubbed him in last year's draft. Undrafted free agents rarely make it in the NFL, but Foster is proud to live up to the tattoo on his left biceps that reads, "Against All Odds."

"I've been told that I shouldn't accomplish anything that I have in my life," he said. "I wasn't supposed to go to college, I wasn't supposed to play on varsity in high school. I definitely wasn't supposed to go to the NFL, I definitely wasn't supposed to start.

"I wasn't supposed to make any noise," he said. "Now, it's that I'm not going to play for very long. I like hurdles, man. They define you."

/

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Comments » 57

VolAlum2003 (Inactive) writes:

Congrats Arian!

OrangeCrush writes:

Always good to see a former Vol player get a chance. Best of luck Arian. Just keep that ball tightly tucked away.

NashvillePreds writes:

Good for him. I will say, my main memory of Arian are his untimely fumbles.

The one against Penn State, in the Outback Bowl, was beyond painful.

Ironcity writes:

Always like Arian but he was beat down that final season and lost all confidence. (then again who didn't). If he holds onto the ball he will have a nice NFL career. Go Arian!

murrayvol writes:

Congratulations Mr. Foster.

Surround yourself with good people and invest well. Good luck!

bspurlingcac#225603 writes:

I picked him up in my keeper league last year as a free agent. I hope he keeps it rolling!!!

rudy123 writes:

in response to bspurlingcac#225603:

I picked him up in my keeper league last year as a free agent. I hope he keeps it rolling!!!

I wished he had played more his senior year. There were games in which he carried the ball very few times. Had he had more carries, he would have surpassed Travis Henry as the leading rusher in U.T. history.

voloffaith writes:

in response to MOUNTAINofOKEMO:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

If foster fumbles too much what is it you do too much?
Try OMEEKO too much kindergarten speak...mommy I want talk now....MOMMA say ,son ewe embarrass me with OMEEKO stuff.

On topic, Arian was evidently coached up by NFL pro's and help change body position when carrying ball to reduce susceptability to fumbling.

Wait I've got a new one...

Couch potato eats
Couch potato has eaten....ta da

pms151 writes:

Well guys I live down here in Houston and I can tell you he is the MAN down here. Much of that confidence thing that happened at UT was perpetuated by negative fans and press. He also got bad advice from CPF about turning pro. The Texans have a solid running back corps now even with Ben Tate out for the season. Look for them to challenge in the South.

whistlinwingman writes:

in response to OrangeCrush:

Always good to see a former Vol player get a chance. Best of luck Arian. Just keep that ball tightly tucked away.

Agree totally.

dalvol writes:

I'm very happy to hear this. I wasn't able to watch the Dallas game but I heard that a running back sliced up the Dallas D. I just didn't know that it was Arian. Way to go, Arian!

PHAT_VOL writes:

Glad you made it inspite of Clawsen.
GO VOLS!

oskie_score writes:

Yet another Vol in the NFL. Only Texas and LSU have more active NFL players than Tennessee. That little tidbit, in and of itself, should peak the interest of elite HS recruits!

AF is a hard-nosed runner who, if he does not fumble too often OR sustain a serious injury, could play 3 (avg career for an NFL RB) or more yrs.

Good Luck Arian!

Munsterlander writes:

Glad to see it. Go Arian!

TommyJack writes:

in response to rudy123:

I wished he had played more his senior year. There were games in which he carried the ball very few times. Had he had more carries, he would have surpassed Travis Henry as the leading rusher in U.T. history.

Are you serious?

volinky writes:

I was as critical as anyone about Arian, and I am more than happy to see him prove me wrong! Good for him!

iadvol writes:

Hardesty is next and Poole after him. The NFL will be loaded with UT RB's once again.

adamsmith5529#630125 writes:

I guess we forgot when he had the fumble against penn st. and the fumble against florida, both game losing fumbles. The only reason he is up on the ut rushing list is because he played all 4 seasons...something travis henry,jamal lewis, and a lot of others didnt do. Should've went pro early.

CHITOWNVOL writes:

So happy for him. Coach clawson nearly ruined this kid...

allvol32 writes:

I'll be a Texans fan this season - except when they play the Titans and the Colts. I'm pulling for you Arian!

lomas98 writes:

Arian got a bad wrap for fumbling, but if you really look he didn't fumble that often compared to the carries he had. The bad part was the time of the fumble and the results it had. SC in 05 at the goaline, Penn St. bowl game, UCLA 08 goaline, Auburn in his own end zone, FL 08 at the goaline early in the game, FL 07 when we cut the lead to 8 and had momentum they returned for TD. I wonder how many more times he fumbled because all of those just stand out. He also fumbled in 07 against SC and luckily Mclendon fell on the ball or that would have been a loss and TN would not have played in the SECCG. I always thought ARian was a tough runner who helped the team a lot. Although no fumble is ever good they are going to happen. His just seemed to be a difference in winning or losing.

ricoisdaman writes:

and we should care about this why.......

kevin151 writes:

He will fumble away his position at some point during the season.

VolsToTheWall writes:

i couldn't stand him as a vol, and it wasn't even the fumbles. His East-West running and tendency to begin to fall down before he even got hit made him get under my skin more than anyone.....but nevertheless its good he's caught a break and apparently learned how to play some football. Just hopes he reps ut well.

lomas98 writes:

in response to ricoisdaman:

and we should care about this why.......

Then why read it and why post in an article you don't care about? People complain on this site when there is an article about another SEC team because this is a "TN" site. Well, last I checked Arian Foster played for TN. Why should we care about an article that was posted on here back in the summer about Peyton Manning playing in a local charity golf tournament? They are all relevent to Tennessee. If you don't like it, don't click to read it.

orangeman1 writes:

He was a good back for UT, but he did have some costly fumbles. I wish he wouldve carried he ball more too his last year and UT probably wouldve done better. I thinks its funny though how posters criticized Fulmer for not playing better talent over Foster and Foster is a starting back in the NFL. With Hardesty and Foster, UT shouldve stuck to pounding the ball with a traditional scheme and they couldve been unstopable. Anyone heard if Crompton will make the cut in SanDiego? I've seen a couple games he played in and didnt look very good.

tnsportsman writes:

Way to hang Arian! Your commitment and work ethics will prove you right and the rest wrong. Glad to see another VOL doing well in the NFL.

GO VOLS, WE ARE UT!

pms151 writes:

Besides Arian, the other Tennessee guy that made a name for himself down here was Fred Weary, a true class act. He was an original and very popular member of the Texans and would still be starting at right guard if he had not suffered a career ending broken leg when he got tangled up with fat/lazy/greedy Albert H in Nashville a couple of years ago. Point is that many Texans fans have a high respect for UT guys and will give them a fresh start in the NFL regardless of the situation that caused some controversy in Knoxville. Remember that Texas is a recruiting hotbed and any inroad that guys like Arian can give us is a big plus. There a lot of kids down here who would love to play in the SEC and most of them grew up hating LSU and Arky. Many of you fellow alums probably don't realize that there are over 3000 UT alums here and we do not have to be Titans or Colts fans to support the Big Orange. GBO! Go Texans!

hokies4ever writes:

in response to NachoDaddy_76:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Home run bro. there is only one Witch Doctor OKEMO needs to get life!!!!!!! This stuff is trash!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

pms151 writes:

Oh and by the way. If you find yourself in Houston on a game day come on into Bubbas http://maps.google.com/maps/place?cli... the unofficial/official gameday hangout for Houston UT fans. You will feel just like you are on the strip. Warning: Gator and Bama fans come at your own risk..LOL

beartn#223846 writes:

<<OKEMO now speaks...

foster fumble too much....texans must be short in running back department...still, wish foster many happy days....and to represent university well....

OKEMO has spoken.....>>

I remember a KNS story towards the end of his career that showed his fumbles per carry was actually not that high. He certainly had some that were costly, but he wasn't as big a fumbler as many fans believe. My biggest disappointment for him was that Clawson decided to abandon the running game for the season during halftime of the UCLA game (we were running effectively in the first half, and would have won the game if we stuck with it), and he didn't end up # 1 in all time rushing. He is a much classier option than Travis Henry, who is the most prolific sire in sports since Bold Rule.
.

pms151 writes:

in response to beartn#223846:

<<OKEMO now speaks...

foster fumble too much....texans must be short in running back department...still, wish foster many happy days....and to represent university well....

OKEMO has spoken.....>>

I remember a KNS story towards the end of his career that showed his fumbles per carry was actually not that high. He certainly had some that were costly, but he wasn't as big a fumbler as many fans believe. My biggest disappointment for him was that Clawson decided to abandon the running game for the season during halftime of the UCLA game (we were running effectively in the first half, and would have won the game if we stuck with it), and he didn't end up # 1 in all time rushing. He is a much classier option than Travis Henry, who is the most prolific sire in sports since Bold Rule.
.

If OKEMO could possibly understand what you wrote and if he understood the word he should write you back with one word...Touche. Great line about Bold Rule!

MothershipChip writes:

That is really awesome for Arian! I was in a philosophy class with him while I was at UT, he is a really good guy. I hope he has a great career with the Texans; he looked great when he played last season. Good luck man!

flatrock writes:

Arian Foster was a load his first 3 seasons with Vols. The fumble vs. Penn State was not all his fault- it was botched by BOTH Volunteers. The
one vs. South Carolina at the goal-line was an
extra-effort stretch.

Hope he does well in NFL for many seasons!

jimr07 writes:

in response to MOUNTAINofOKEMO:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

i wondered who the first jerk would be to bring up the fumbling. you win..so far, no fumbles this year or last year. must have have the orange uniforms.

jimr07 writes:

in response to pms151:

Well guys I live down here in Houston and I can tell you he is the MAN down here. Much of that confidence thing that happened at UT was perpetuated by negative fans and press. He also got bad advice from CPF about turning pro. The Texans have a solid running back corps now even with Ben Tate out for the season. Look for them to challenge in the South.

I live in Houston also and according to the Houston Comical (Chronicle) he has been the biggest surprise of the pre season.

pms151 writes:

I hate to beat a dead horse but I will. Arian got a bad rap about running E/W instead of N/S. But who wouldn't when there were no holes opening up. You naysayers need to look at some of the great runs he has made in the NFL so far. This guy is a power runner. He reminds me of James 'Little Man' Stewart. As someone earlier on this thread pointed out, the average NFL career for a running back is short. That is because of all of the E/W runners drafted with speed. They go down with terrible injuries and the average stats go down. The N/S guys like Eddie George and Earl Campbell, for instance, have much longer careers.

jimr07 writes:

in response to pms151:

Oh and by the way. If you find yourself in Houston on a game day come on into Bubbas http://maps.google.com/maps/place?cli... the unofficial/official gameday hangout for Houston UT fans. You will feel just like you are on the strip. Warning: Gator and Bama fans come at your own risk..LOL

according to the e-mail i got from the alumni association, the game watching has been moved to another location.

jimr07 writes:

in response to kevin151:

He will fumble away his position at some point during the season.

Nice positive post. I am sure Arian would appreciate the confidence you have in him.

pms151 writes:

in response to jimr07:

according to the e-mail i got from the alumni association, the game watching has been moved to another location.

Really? Where to? I am in Piney Pointe. When did this happen?

jimr07 writes:

in response to pms151:

Really? Where to? I am in Piney Pointe. When did this happen?

I will have to look it up in my e-mail. It is way out west somewhere. if you can hold on, i will go back and look it up for you.

jimr07 writes:

in response to pms151:

Really? Where to? I am in Piney Pointe. When did this happen?

Nicks Sports Bar, 1448 Wilcrest.

Down_The_Field writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Are you serious?

arian foster - 2964 yds
travis henry - 3078 yds

i thought he'd pass him at the time about mid season, but if i remember it right, he had a couple bad games towards the end and couldn't catch travis. such is life.

pms151 writes:

in response to jimr07:

Nicks Sports Bar, 1448 Wilcrest.

Hey that is not a bad location...just west of the beltway at westhiemer or briar forest. Nicks is a good place just ask Richie Justice! LOL Are they going to show the UT Martin game..can't understand why I don't have that email myself. Was that from Houston or National Alum Association?

RichmondKyVol writes:

I certainly hope potential recruits don't read these comments. What talented kid would want to play for a school where the fans eat their young?

pms151 writes:

in response to RichmondKyVol:

I certainly hope potential recruits don't read these comments. What talented kid would want to play for a school where the fans eat their young?

You are damn sure right about that RKV! Some of these fools don't understand the impact of their ignorance.

RespectTradition writes:

Way to go! Proud of you Mr. Foster. You were all Vol and didn't deserve some of the abuse. I am happy for you.

Go Vols!

murrayvol writes:

in response to pms151:

If OKEMO could possibly understand what you wrote and if he understood the word he should write you back with one word...Touche. Great line about Bold Rule!

It was a good line but it's Bold Ruler.

pms151 writes:

in response to murrayvol:

It was a good line but it's Bold Ruler.

Touche...LOL But of course I only quoted the jerk..OKEMO. You and I are on the same page...I think.

Volborn writes:

in response to Witch_Doctor:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Me too Witch Doctor. I felt A F was underrated as a runner. Actually, he didn't fumble that much, just at some of the most inopportune times.

Good luck Arian...I'll be pulling for you!

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