After an impressive junior year campaign at the University of Tennessee where he rushed for 1,193 yards and scored 14 touchdowns, Arian Foster strongly considered declaring for the draft but was convinced otherwise by Vols head coach Phil Fulmer. It was a decision he would later regret as Foster’s senior year output was lukewarm, at best, and his name was not called at the 2009 NFL Draft.
While the ordeal would discourage most, Foster fought on as he had since he was a kid. While in elementary school, a teacher asked Arian what he wanted to be when he grew up. After saying "a star in the NFL," the instructor laughed, but the future Texans star running back was determined to prove his peers wrong.
Arian signed with the Texans as an undrafted free agent. He eventually landed on the practice squad and eventually the 53-man roster. After a limited workload, head coach Gary Kubiak increased his reps and Foster rose to the occasion. The following week, he was named the starter and rushed for an impressive 119 yards on 20 carries with two touchdowns. As we know now, it was only the beginning.
On March 5, 2012, the Texans signed Foster to a $43.5 million extension over five years. During the ensuing press conference, Arian was emotional, reflecting on the sacrifices his Mexican-American mother made to make sure he could eat as a child. A couple of months after signing the new, lucrative deal, Foster purchased a Segway for each of his offensive linemen as a way of thanking them for the hard work they put in to turn him into one of the best running backs in the league. It may not seem like much, but Foster doesn't take his teammates for granted.