A Minute With: Football's Arian Foster on acting and NFL draft

Fri Apr 11, 2014 7:10am EDT
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By Eric Kelsey

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Houston Texans running back Arian Foster tests his Hollywood acting skills on the big screen as a college football player waiting for his name to be called at the annual NFL draft in the film "Draft Day," which opens in U.S. theaters on Friday.

Foster, 27, a three-time Pro Bowl selection in his five-year pro career, is one of the sport's noted underdog success stories, having been passed over in the 2009 draft after playing at the University of Tennessee.

Foster spoke with Reuters alongside his "Draft Day" co-star, Terry Crews, who played briefly in the NFL before turning to acting. Together they talked about the career transition for NFL players once they leave the game, the draft and their beefs with the National Collegiate Athletic Association, or NCAA, now facing pressure from athletes wanting to unionize.

Q: Have you given thought to pursuing acting once your football career concludes?

Foster: I thoroughly enjoyed my experiences in the film industry thus far. So I don't see why, if an opportunity presents itself again, I wouldn't jump on it, but it won't get in the way of my football career because that's first and foremost. That was my dream since I was seven years old.

Q: What are some of the difficulties a football player faces transitioning to another career after his playing days are over?

Crews: You're identified with being a football player and then all of a sudden you're out there in normal life, and it's very, very harsh. ... The guys you went to college with all got into their careers ... but all of sudden now you're starting all over and that guy is your boss.

Q: "Draft Day" shows the eccentric questions teams often ask draft prospects. What peculiar questions did either of you get?   Continued...

Houston Texans running back Arian Foster celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Cincinnati Bengals during the third quarter of their NFL AFC wildcard playoff football game in Houston, Texas January 5, 2013. REUTERS/Tim Sharp