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NFL player reflects on journey from UMass to the NFL

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AMHERST, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) -One UMass football alumni realized his childhood dream when he got the decision that he would join the NFL ranks.

“Growing up, my whole dream was to be within the NFL, and it felt surreal when the moment happened,” said Bryce Watts, Pittsburgh Steelers Quarterback.

On April 30, UMass cornerback Bryce Watts received the decision of a lifetime from the Pittsburgh Steelers. Following the NFL Draft, he was signed by the six-time Super Bowl champions as an undrafted free agent.

“Pure excitement. Very first thing, I began crying. My family was there,” said Watts.

The Toms River, Recent Jersey Native became only the seventh energetic player from UMass within the NFL and he told Western Mass News that he transferred from the University of North Carolina to UMass to be closer to family.

“My mother got diagnosed with stage three breast cancer and I actually desired to be near home,” said Watts.

On Friday, Watts reported to Steelers’ rookie minicamp, his first taste of NFL motion.

“I’m similar to a sponge without delay, just trying to absorb all the data that the coaches are giving me. I just attempt to learn and elevate my game to a different level,” said Watts.

He’s bringing a swagger to the Steel City, with aspirations of eventually securing a spot on the team’s 53 man roster.

“I believe the largest thing for me is my confidence. I’m a really confident player and I believe you wish that at db, and particularly within the NFL to achieve success you wish that chip in your shoulder,” said Watts.

As for his alma mater, after a 1-11 season, Watts is happy for what the longer term could hold for the Minutemen.

“I walked in there the opposite day and Coach Brown, it was a special vibe, it was a special style of whole thing, and so they’re gonna have a very good yr this yr,” said Watts.

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