Braman has made a big impression in training camp with his pass-rushing skills, relentless motor and sky-high intensity. He had six tackles, 1.5 sacks and a forced fumble in the preseason opener against the Jets. He was swarmed by the local media after morning practice at the Methodist Training Center on Thursday.
Why? Aside from his intriguing talent on the field, Braman has quite the story off of it.
He was undrafted after a college career that started at Idaho, continued at Long Beach City College and finished at West Texas A&M. The Texans signed him based on the recommendation of defensive assistant Bobby King, Braman’s defensive line coach at West Texas in 2009. Here’s a rundown of what happened before that, via John McClain of the Houston Chronicle:
Before general manager Rick Smith offered him a contract, Braman, 24, worked for Abercrombie & Fitch in Los Angeles, modeled, attended some casting calls, got kicked out of West Texas A&M for manufacturing psilocybin (a hallucinogen) and worked as a bouncer in Amarillo and College Station.
Braman… said he gets his size from a 7-4, 460-pound grandfather and disclosed that he keeps his dreadlocks that were cut by teammates at West Texas in a plastic bag.
And there’s more. Braman was raised by a single mother in Spokane, Wash. He’s an athletic freak who, as a 6-5 track standout in high school, ran the 100 meters in 11.1 seconds, posted a high jump of 6-9 and had a 21-foot long jump.
There have been plenty of anecdotes floating around Reliant Stadium during camp about Braman’s intensity and burning desire to make the team. One involves a story about his first practice, on the first day of camp. Braman didn’t have insoles in his team-issued cleats, and he practiced without them because he didn’t want to bother anyone on the equipment staff.
“I didn’t know how to handle it because I’m not used to being able to just get new stuff all the time,” Braman said on Thursday. “I didn’t want to get in trouble and tell anybody, so I just practiced without the insoles. I talked to one of the players, one of the vets, (after practice) and he told me that I’d be able to take care of it. So it was kind of funny, the guys kind of laughed at me about it because they would never do that, but I was just ready go and happy to be out here. It didn’t matter what I was wearing or the quality of the equipment was in.”
It’s exactly that type of attitude that has made Braman one of the most talked-about players in Texans training camp.
Tags: Bobby King, Bryan Braman
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