Adjusting to life in the NFL is no small feat -- the speed of the game is faster, systems are more complex than in college and the margin for error is razor-thin.
For wide receiver Dylan Cantrell and linebacker Uchenna Nwosu, the challenges that come with transitioning to the pros have been made easier by a welcoming culture in Los Angeles. The pair of rookies both had misconceptions about how they'd be embraced by their veteran teammates.
"You get (these) false stereotypes in your head when you grow up watching these guys," said Cantrell, who was a guest on Thursday's episode of Chargers Weekly. "…Philip Rivers and Joey Bosa, and guys that are top players in the league – (you think) they're going to just be cocky and not even want to talk to you, but everyone is just so down-to-earth."
"The highlight of my time here is probably just being around these guys and seeing how it's not really as bad as everyone thought," Nwosu shared before the start of training camp. "(Everyone thought) the vets are all old and grumpy and don't really talk to rookies."
Nwosu said it's been comforting to have fellow linebacker and former USC teammate Hayes Pullard in the locker room. He also pointed to third-year linebacker Jatavis Brown as one of the players he's gravitated towards as he begins his first NFL season.
"He just goes to work," Nwosu said of Brown. "He shows up every day and I like that about him. …He's a good man."
Cantrell's early experience within his position group has been similar to Nwosu's. In the same breath as complementing the veteran corps' talent level, Cantrell also described the individuals within it as great men.
These rookies' preconceived notions have been shattered and an example has been set – one that may not necessarily be commonplace throughout the league.
"I think we're really blessed to be here," Cantrell said. "And honestly, just the feel I get around the locker room and around the facility – just the high-character guys we have on the team and how close everyone is with each other – I know it's not like that everywhere."
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