GoBlackKnights - Trent Steelman: The Journey Part II
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Trent Steelman: The Journey Part II

As we hit the latter part of July, it has been at least 15-days into the mode where NFL clubs are permitted to open their respective pre-season training camps for rookies and 1st-year players. This is typically 7-days prior to the team's earliest permissible mandatory reporting date for their veteran players.
For former Army QB Trent Steelman, who just moved with his wife to Atlanta (Ga.) and is currently in the reserves where he will fulfill his military commitment in the reserves ... this is an anxious time relative to his trek towards an NFL career or 'the league' as it is often called.
Both Steelman and his agent Scott Bergman remain confident that the West Point graduate will be brought into someone's training camp very soon.
"Trent is very close to getting pulled in somewhere," shared Bergman, who acknowledged just two days ago in his conversation with GoBlackKnights.com that at least six NFL teams contacted him for more info on Steelman after he won MVP honors with Team USA gold medal win against Japan. "Also, I had an exchange of interest today with Miami, but I still think Ravens will call Trent back in."
This is a point that Steelman himself confirmed on Thursday in his conversation with GBK.
"Every since my workout with Baltimore, we've been in contact with them and they called again yesterday," he added. "We've probably had 4 or 5 other teams contact us about coming in. So, right now it's like I said ... that waiting game."
"But, we're very optimistic that something is on the horizon very shortly. Especially during this time, where injuries are piling up like crazy and I'm the next man up for probably 4 or 5 teams."
Steelman is well aware that it often becomes a numbers game, that is not always predicated simply on talent. And sometimes in order to maintain focus at the task at hand, he has reached out to former teammates who have and are currently experiencing some of the same NFL challenges.
"Well, Josh [McNary] and I use to have the same agent, but I switched probably about 2-3 months ago," explained Steelman, who if signed, would enter camp as a free agent. "So, I kept up with Josh a lot and also talked to Ali [Villanueva] probably a couple of months ago ... he was just checking in."
"It's a business more than anything. A lot of times you think that when they look at a football player it's solely based off of their performance, but in the NFL just like anything in the world, there's a lot of politics. But like I said, it's a business and it's a numbers game. So really, you just have to be ready at any point, at any time."
"Like for instance, I was just going about my business ... I think it was Monday and I got a call from my agent that Baltimore [Ravens] wanted to fly me out," he continued. "I think it was two-hours later and I was on a plane. It's a crazy business, it's a crazy profession but I'm in for it. That's why I love the game, I'm here to gut it out and do whatever it takes."
Army West Point Character
Part of Steelman's endurance DNA can be traced back to his experience at the academy and as an Army football player.
There were several highlights and low points leading the Black Knights' triple option offense that was consistently at the top of leading the nation in rushing during his tenure under center. On the high note, none probably more exciting than the last minute (63 seconds to be exact) comeback/victory at Michie Stadium against Boston College in 2012. Of course, probably the lowest moment was in his final collegiate game ... Army-Navy game and the fumble exchange mishap between himself and fullback Larry Dixon in what appeared to be another comeback victory for his resume.
"It definitely personified who I am and what I try to represent," as he went on to say that those moments built and taught him about Trent Steelman the person, the Army leader and football player.
"More so the Army-Navy game than then the Boston College game. In my mind and in my opinion, it's how you react and how you conduct yourself and how you carry yourself as an individual when things don't go your way."
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"As a team, I don't think we handle that situation with more class than we can imagine," Steelman shared. "And from an individual standpoint, I've alway been an emotional player -- it's just who I am and how I carry myself throughout football. I play with my emotions on my sleeve and when you work for years for something ... the Beat Navy culture for 4-years exactly. And for it to happen in such a manner that was really devastating, especially because we thought we had it ... we thought that was the year. All the work, all the tears, all the blood that you share with your brothers and to go out in that manner, it really hit me hard."
"I don't apologize for how I reacted after that game, that was just me Trent Steelman as a player, that was me Trent Steelman as a person. But the way we carried ourselves afterwards impacted not only that stadium, but an entire nation."
"I couldn't tell you, but I got over a thousand emails, phone calls, letters, whatever it is after that game commending us on how we acted," he added. "Really, a lot of Navy fans wrote me letters saying deep down inside, they hope that we had won that game."
Beyond Metrics
Very often or at least initially the NFL combine is the ticket for many when it come to entrance or getting that first peak from the NFL teams ... which is obviously based on ones' college performance, but also the "measurable" like the 40, vertical, pro-shuttle, broad jump, etc..
However, the measurables are not necessarily the attributes that make Steelman the ball player that has gotten him this far in the process. Even at Army, he had a few naysayers where he would hear that as a quarterback his hands were too small, that he doesn't have a great arm, etc. But, when it was all said and done, he was one of the most productive offensive players that Army has seen in some time.
"I believe the unmeasurables like you said and the intangibles that I bring to a team that really separates me from others," stated Steelman, who believes that un-measurable qualities will assist him during his trek towards a NFL football career.
"I mean, I'm not going to be the fastest guy, I'm not going to be the biggest guy but the one thing that I will make certain of is that I'll be the hardest working guy."
"That's what has gotten to where I am today is my work ethic," he declared. "That's the No. 1 I take pride in. You might not always be the best athlete out there, but you can certainly work to be and there hasn't been a day gone by where I haven't strobed to be the best player on the field. That's the mentality that I carry into whatever it is that I'm doing. Just like in the USA thing ... I came in with an open mind and just going to work. I grew as a receiver, I grew as an overall football player and it's really propelled me, especially for teams where I was on the boarder of and they didn't think I could play a position, so like I said I just go to work everyday with the mindset that I'm going to get better and go from there."
The Potential Fit
Beyond the Ravens, the New England Patriots have also shown interest in Steelman's talents.
"I can tell you now that the Patriots were the team that invited Trent to a workout last month, they have not said yes or no at this point," Bergman shared.
The proverbial thinking is that Steelman fits the mold of a player like Patriot's' wide receiver Julian Edleman. And when asked if he saw any similarities or if that what you hearing from ball clubs, especially the Pats relative to how you could fit into their organization ... here's what Steelman had to say.
"{chuckles} That's all I hear and that's probably the No. 1 comparison that teams, the media and whoever compares me to and that's not a bad comparison," Steelman professed.
"I think our mentalities are a lot alike and our skill sets are a lot alike. Obviously, he had the same kind of transition that I did, being a quarterback in college and moving to that spot receiver position. But, I think more importantly it's how he carries himself and how he conducts himself on the field. You watch him, and he's a tough player. He guts it out every play, he gives it his all and he's not going to let his size effect how he plays and how he controls the ball game. He really makes people play to him. He continues to produce and continues to do what he wants on the football field and that's a lot of credit to him."
Well, for Army fans it seems like only yesterday that No. 8, who is currently 25-years old was running the Black Knights' triple option offense, but in actuality it was three years ago, with 2012 being his senior football season.
"It definitely seems like yesterday," Steelman spelled out. "Time has flown by and it really does seem like yesterday that I was on the field for Army and just graduating and heading off to serve."
"Time has flown by, but it's definitely the highlight of my career is being able to play for the academy and being able to suit up with that West Point on your chest and the American flag on your shoulder. It was definitely an honor to be able to represent the school and I try to carry that into my everyday life ... whether it's going to be on the football field or just out there in the work world."
"Hopefully in the near future, I can do that on a bigger stage," he closed out.
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