2015 DRAFT GUIDE
Bills WR Rogers eager to put troubled past behind

By JOHN WAWROW - AP Sports Writer
    2013-05-11 13:11

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) - Eager to put behind his troubled past, receiver Da'Rick Rogers is grateful to the Buffalo Bills for providing him a shot at a future.

And this, the undrafted rookie openly acknowledges, just might be the only chance he'll get.

``I cherish it like gold. This is it. This is my last opportunity,'' Rogers said shortly after joining his new teammates in opening the Bills three-day rookie minicamp this weekend. ``I've got to make the best of it.''

Tapping the podium for emphasis, Rogers expressed confidence that he's ``growing as a person,'' and capable overcoming a tarnished reputation. Suspended indefinitely by Tennessee last summer for failing numerous drug tests as a sophomore, Rogers transferred to Tennessee Tech shortly before the season began.

``Everything in the past, I'm not here to defend those things at all,'' said Rogers said. ``Those are things that are real. They happened. And I'm maturing.''

Aside from the attention focused on first-round pick, quarterback EJ Manuel, who made his on-field debut in preparing to compete for the starting job, Rogers is the most intriguing prospect attending Bills camp.

At 6-foot-3 and 205 pounds, he showed potential as a first-time starter during his sophomore season at Tennessee. He led the Volunteers with 67 catches for 1,040 yards and nine touchdowns.

Last year, he had 893 yards receiving and tied a single-season Tennessee Tech record with 10 touchdown catches.

None of that production helped Rogers in overcoming concerns NFL teams had in the months leading up to the draft. Despite being regarded among the top 10 draft-eligible receiver prospects, all 32 teams passed on making Rogers one of the draft's 254 selections.

It was a wakeup call and another reminder for Rogers of how far his stock had fallen.

``Oh, man, it was devastating,'' he said. ``I feel like I was one of the top receivers in the draft, but with the off-the-field issues that I had, the things that I was doing, it hit me and it hurt me.''

It's also an experience that has motivated him to do better.

``It just makes the chip on my shoulder that much bigger,'' Rogers said. ``There's a lot of doubters and a lot of haters out there. I'm here not to prove them wrong, but to show who I am and what I'm really about.''

The Bills showed interest in Rogers. Team officials, including coach Doug Marrone, met with the receiver at the NFL combine in February. And the Bills included Rogers as one of the 30 prospects teams are allowed to bring in to their facility for a pre-draft visit.

That wasn't enough to convince Buffalo to draft Rogers. The team instead addressed its needs at receiver by selecting Southern California's Robert Woods in the second round and Texas speedster Marquise Goodwin in the third. After the draft, the Bills decided to take a chance on Rogers.

All three will be given chances to earn regular roles on an offense that lacks an established receiver opposite Stevie Johnson.

Marrone is both intrigued by Rogers, and concerned by the player's past.

``It's a one-shot deal,'' Marrone said during a conference call with Bills season-ticket holders last week. ``Either you've learned your lesson and you've grown up and you're going to go forward and mature, or you haven't learned your lesson and you're going to be out on the street. It's that simple.''

It's a message the coach has shared with Rogers.

``It's all on you, and you have to make the right decisions,'' Marrone said following practice Friday.

Rogers had an inconsistent debut at practice. Though he made a few sharp catches particularly in traffic, there were numerous times when he bobbled the ball in the open field.

Marrone chalked up Rogers' performance to someone trying to catch up to the speed of practice after a long layoff.

Rogers assessed his outing as ``pretty good,'' and noted he was getting accustomed to being back in a practice setting.

``You've got to come in here and grab it by the horns,'' Rogers said, recalling words of advice he received from Marrone. ``Come in here and be a professional, be accountable and everything will work out the way it's supposed to. So that's the way I'm going to handle things up here, do everything I can the best way.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Richard RodgersJul 1 05:03p

Green Bay Packers TE Richard Rodgers could see more playing time in 2015, according to Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com. Rodgers played 528 snaps, while fellow TE Andrew Quarless played [ More ]

Rob HouslerJun 30 03:13p

Cleveland Browns TEs Gary Barnidge, Rob Housler and Jim Dray could all end up taking over for TE Jordan Cameron, who is now with the Miami Dolphins. Head coach [ More ]

Sam BradfordJun 29 05:22p

Philadelphia Eagles QB Sam Bradford (knee) is expected to be in the final phase of his rehabilitation from a torn anterior cruciate ligament once training camp begins. Bradford's second [ More ]

Charles JohnsonJun 29 02:02p

Minnesota Vikings WR Charles X. Johnson appears to have everything it takes to produce in the NFL, according to offensive coordinator Norv Turner. 'He's got great work ethic, and [ More ]

C.J. SpillerJun 28 09:02p

New Orleans Saints RB C.J. Spiller has a perfect skill-set for head coach Sean Payton's system, which relies on getting the ball to players in space, according Chris Wesseling [ More ]

Tony MoeakiJun 25 07:12p

Atlanta Falcons TE Tony Moeaki will compete with TE Jacob Tamme for the Falcons' starting tight end job during training camp. QB Matt Ryan praised both tight ends for [ More ]

Kelvin BenjaminJun 25 03:52p

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin's reported weight gain this offseason is being overblown, according to general manager Dave Gettleman. Gettleman expects Benjamin to be ready to go for training [ More ]

Antoine CasonJun 25 03:03a

Free-agent CB Antoine Cason (foot) will miss the 2015 season due to surgery he underwent on Tuesday, June 23. Cason (Ravens) did not specify what type of surgery he [ More ]

Marvin JonesJun 24 09:13p

Cincinnati Bengals WR Marvin Jones (ankle, foot) did not play in 2014 due to multiple foot and ankle issues, but he is healthy and was impressive in organized team activities (OTAs) and minicamp.

Keith WenningJun 24 02:43p

Free-agent QB Keith Wenning (Ravens) signed with the Cincinnati Bengals Wednesday, June 24. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Pierre GarconJun 24 02:23p

Washington Redskins WR Pierre Garcon could be featured more often in the passing game this season based on the offseason workouts. Garcon often lined up to the right of [ More ]

Martavis BryantJun 24 01:43p

Pittsburgh Steelers WRs Markus Wheaton and Martavis Bryant are expected to compete for the No. 2 wide receiver job during training camp. Both players performed well during offseason workouts.

Peyton ManningJun 24 11:53a

Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning was the subject of preliminary trade discussions with the Houston Texans, according to a source. The talks occurred before Manning restructured his deal and [ More ]

Rueben RandleJun 24 10:53a

New York Giants WR Rueben Randle was the best receiver on the field by a wide margin during spring practices, in the opinion of beat writer Jordan Ranaan. Randle [ More ]

Chris IvoryJun 24 10:43a

New York Jets RB Chris Ivory is listed as the starting running back entering training camp, according to beat writer Rich Cimini's unofficial depth chart. RB Bilal Powell is [ More ]

Devonta FreemanJun 23 10:22a

Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman enters training camp ahead of RB Tevin Coleman on the depth chart.

Joseph RandleJun 23 10:02a

Dallas Cowboys RB Joseph Randle appears to be the clear leader at running back, and it's his job to lose in training camp.

Ahmad BradshawJun 22 11:32p

Free-agent RB Ahmad Bradshaw (Colts) has been suspended one game for violation of the league's substance abuse policy. If he signs with a team he must sit out for the first week.

Terrelle PryorJun 22 04:33p

Cincinnati Bengals WR Terrelle Pryor was claimed off waivers by the Cleveland Browns Monday, June 22, according to a source.

Fred DavisJun 19 06:02p

New England Patriots TE Fred Davis was released Friday, June 19.

Dennis PittaJun 19 02:22p

Baltimore Ravens TE Dennis Pitta (hip) was not medically cleared to practice in minicamp as he continues to recover from his second dislocated and fractured hip in as many [ More ]

Isaiah CrowellJun 19 01:22p

Cleveland Browns RB Isaiah Crowell could be the workhorse back if his ball security improves, according to offensive coordinator John DeFilippo.

Devonta FreemanJun 19 01:12p

Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman will be used in a lot of different ways, including as a receiver, according to head coach Dan Quinn. 'I knew Devonta had terrific [ More ]

Chris OgbonnayaJun 19 11:32a

Free-agent RB Chris Ogbonnaya (Giants) announced his retirement Friday, June 19.

John MoffittJun 18 11:02p

Free-agent OG John Moffitt unretired Wednesday, June 17, and cleared waivers Thursday, June 18. He is free to sign with a team of his choosing. The Philadelphia Eagles, Miami [ More ]

Terrelle PryorJun 18 09:32p

Free-agent QB Terrelle Pryor is going to give it a shot at playing wide receiver in the NFL. Some teams have already expressed an interest.

Allen RobinsonJun 18 09:22p

Jacksonville Jaguars WR Allen Robinson was described as 'unbelievable' by QB Blake Bortles Thursday, June 18. 'He's definitely a threat now in the red zone. ... He's physical. He [ More ]

Terrelle PryorJun 18 05:32p

Cincinnati Bengals QB Terrelle Pryor was waived Thursday, June 18.

Taylor ThompsonJun 18 05:32p

Tennesse Titans TE Taylor Thompson was waived Thursday, June 18.

Matthew MulliganJun 18 04:32p

Free-agent TE Matthew Mulligan (Titans) signed an undisclosed contract with the Buffalo Bills Thursday, June 18.

Carlton MitchellJun 18 04:22p

Free-agent WR Carlton Mitchell (Buccaneers) signed an undisclosed contract with the Atlanta Falcons Thursday, June 18. WR Shane Wynn was waived.

Daniel ThomasJun 18 04:12p

Free-agent RB Daniel Thomas (Dolphins) signed a one-year contract with the Chicago Bears Thursday, June 18. Financial terms were not disclosed.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group