Everette Brown wanted to make sure he was keeping his body in good condition, so that when he did get a phone call from an NFL team sometime this season, he was physically ready.
That call came on Monday from the Washington Redskins.
The Washington Redskins on Monday, July 28, 2014, announced the signing of defensive end/linebacker Everette Brown. Here's some shots from his NFL career.
"I was going through my normal workout routine and taking care of my body, and I got a call," Brown told Redskins.com. "I kept my mind going, kept my body going and was watching the games every Sunday, too."
Brown spent the preseason with the Redskins before being released on Aug 30.
From the time of his release to his return, Brown said he spent about four hours every day in the gym.
"I wanted to continue to lift weights and get stronger," he said. "Then, as far as my cardio, I was doing position drills. I'd set up cone drills myself, ladder drills, and then I would also switch it up and do some cycling classes to get the heart rate up without all the pounding on the knee joins, ankles, hips."
Outside of weightlifting and cardio, Brown also incorporated some speed and flexibility aspects into his regimen.
"I would make sure to get some hand-work in with bags," he said. "I just tried to switch things up. I do Pilates, massage, I had things to prepare myself every week as if it was game week so then when I did get the opportunity, I would already still be into it."
Brown was originally selected by the Carolina Panthers in the second round (43rd overall) of the 2009 NFL Draft and has appeared in 38 career games with three starts with the Panthers (2009-11), San Diego Chargers (2011-12) and Dallas Cowboys (2013).
He has also spent time on the rosters of the Detroit Lions (2012) and Philadelphia Eagles (2013).
For his career, Brown has recorded 59 tackles (42 solo) with seven sacks, four forced fumbles, three passes defensed and an interception. Last season, he appeared in seven games for the Cowboys and notched a sack in his season debut vs. Minnesota in Week 9.
Brown said that he could have gotten down on the fact that he wasn't on an NFL roster through the first eight weeks of the season, but that having a positive mindset helped him get through.
"You have to stay in it mentally because even if you're preparing for it physically and you're working out, but mentally you're not there, it doesn't mean anything," he explained. "It's worthless at that point.
"This wasn't my first time going through a situation where I was waiting to be signed, so I definitely took everything I learned and put it together. I didn't want to dump anything in the tank and say "Oh, I'm not going to play anymore."
Moving forward, Brown admitted that it'll still take some time to fully adjust to game speed again, but his overall knowledge of the Redskins' scheme should help him before playing the Dallas Cowboys on Monday.
"It was pretty easy picking up things that we're doing," he said. "One of the things that helped was the foundation I did have in the preseason with the coaching staff and the players here, they help learning the playbook and getting in to the system here.
"Leaving for seven weeks and then coming back, staying in it mentally it was almost as if I never left. I just had to touch up on a few things, get reminded, but it felt good running around out there today and just being part of the team."*