|Posted on June 4, 2018 at 7:00 PM|
As a linebacker in the NFL, Jay Foreman played in a total of 85 games for 4 different teams (Buffalo Bills, Houston Texans, New York Giants and San Francisco 49ers) and recorded 367 tackles. I caught up with the 8-year veteran to discuss what it was like to learn from Hall of Fame defensive end Bruce Smith, what it meant to be part of the 2002 Houston Texans expansion franchise and what he's doing now, over a decade since his retirement.
Ryan: What are Sundays like for you now, 11+ years after your retirement?
Jay: "My Sunday’s are pretty much the same every week. I guess you could say I’m a creature of habit. I try and go for a walk, then church, then look for a competitive game to watch (NFL or Golf) and then a family dinner every Sunday night. I always wanted to provide my kids with a consistent family dinner on Sunday’s. But I will say, I do enjoy watching football more now than I did years ago."
Ryan: Your father, Chuck Foreman, was a 5x Pro Bowl running back with the Minnesota Vikings—one of the most dominant and versatile players of his generation. What was it like to grow up in a football family and how did it help prepare you for your NFL career?
Jay: "Growing up with a famous father was very unique because of all the life experiences (good and bad) you are exposed to at an early age. I will always say that there was more good than bad and that I wouldn’t change anything. The weird part is that most people think you get it easy because of your family history, but it’s the opposite. It’s hard to imagine people trying to hurt you or hold you back because of who your Dad is or what he did on the [football] field. As far as preparing me for a NFL career, I think being Chuck Foreman’s son helped a lot because I didn’t get overwhelmed by the big stage and I always knew how to compete."
Ryan: Your rookie season (1999) was Bruce Smith’s last season in Buffalo. What was it like to come into the locker room and learn from veterans like Bruce?
Jay: "It was awesome. Not only was Bruce there but [so was] Thurman Thomas, Andre Reed, Ted Washington and Ruben Brown—all Hall of Fame players or soon will be. The best part is that they were all great teammates and taught younger players like myself what it took to make it in the NFL."
Ryan: What was it like to be part of the Houston Texans as a new expansion franchise?
Jay: "Being a original Texan was a great experience and it was great to be a part of something special. We didn’t win a lot of games but the relationships are for a lifetime. I will always hold my time in Houston close to my heart because I felt that I ascended both personally and professionally there."
Ryan: Out of the 85 games you played in your career, which one stands out as your personal favorite?
Jay: "I would say my very first game being active, against Seattle, because it's when you realize you made the team and are going to play in the NFL. And the second one is the game I got injured in because it was the best game I think I ever had and also, the last game I ever started. I guess when they say “play the game like it’s your last”, I took it to heart, even though I played two more years after the Jets game when I was a Texan. Up until that point, I had never been hurt or injured before."
Ryan: What are you up to these days?
Jay: "I am blessed to do some media work for Nebraska and also, to help with the Foreman Foundation. The Foreman Foundation raises funds and awareness for diabetics from all walks of life. You can find more information at www.jayforeman.net and www.foreman-foundation.com."
Follow Jay Foreman on Twitter: @foreman5644
Follow Ryan Michael on Twitter: @theryanmichael