Presenting your 2018 Los Angeles Chargers.
Emmanuel Ellerbee stands at his locker at Hoag Performance Center. Directly to his right is Nick Dzubnar, Kyzir White and Denzel Perryman. Across from him is the section with the team's defensive backs, including Trevor Williams, Rayshawn Jenkins and Jahleel Addae.
It's crazy to think that only 24 hours ago he was back home in Houston, eating brunch with his parents following church.
Ellerbee had spent the past few months in Atlanta, impressing the Falcons with his speed and athleticism. He finished third on the team this preseason with 12 total tackles, yet it wasn't enough to make the team as he was waived.
So there Ellerbee was, enjoying brunch with his parents at peace with what transpired. He knew he gave it everything he had, so he put it in God's hands, content with whatever came next.
Then his phone buzzed.
"It was my agent texting me, and he said the Chargers are going to bring you onto their 53-man roster," Ellerbee recalled with a beaming grin.
Suddenly, all hell broke loose.
"My dad and I just got ecstatic," he said. "We started high-fiving and clapping. We were yelling right in the middle of the restaurant. People were looking at us like, 'What the hell are these dudes doing?!' Me and my dad got up (screaming), paid the bill and ran out. These two old ladies were next to us, asking 'What happened? What happened?' My mom told them I just called onto the 53-man roster for the L.A. Chargers. So it was cool. It's a blessing, and something I don't take lightly."
Now Ellerbee brings that same energy and passion to the Bolts.
In fact, it's what he's most proud of when discussing what he brings to the table.
"I'm a guy who's really passionate about the game," he said. "Every single play you're going to see me giving 100 percent maximum effort. I'm straining every single play, and you're going to feel the intensity and love that I have for the game. I take it the same way in practice and in the game. On every single play I give all I have because this is an opportunity that not many people have. I want fans to have as much fun watching me in the stands that I do on the field. I think that's something you can expect from me."
All it takes is one conversation with the Chargers' newest linebacker to see how passionate he is about football.
Above all else, he's excited to bring that exuberance to the Bolts.
"This opportunity is a blessing," he said. "It means everything to me. It means you are playing with the best of the best. That you're the top one of the one percent. So I'm blessed to be here and to compete. To help these guys win a championship. To buy into everything they have here and do everything I can to bring this city a championship. I'm excited!"
To do that, Ellerbee knows he needs to contribute in more ways than one, which is why he's eager to be a factor on special teams.
"I just see it as another opportunity to get on the field and have fun. At the end of the day, special teams is mono a mono. How much do you want it? How much do you want to will it? I'm excited to do special teams. I think it's a phase of the game that can change the entire tide of the game. Change things for the entire team. If I can do anything to get the offensive onto the field or the defense off of the field, that's something I'm willing to do."