As rookies reported to their respective teams around the NFL, they braced themselves for the surreal moment of their first day at work and seeing an NFL jersey hanging in a locker with their name on it.
Panthers rookie linebacker Tim Shaw was no different, but the weight of the moment was fleeting.
"It's all kind of overwhelming, but at the same time, that's okay. I went in there thinking 'let's get down to business' - that was my mindset," he said during a recent Scout Radio interview. "I didn't look at it with wide eyes, I was thinking 'here's my equipment, here's my stuff, let's get ready to go.'"
He spent his first day absorbing all that he could, and he attacked the situation with the same focus that has helped him be so successful on the football field.
"Coming from Penn State, I feel well-prepared with the concepts I need to know," he said. "The biggest adjustment is the change in terminology, because a concept you called something else for five years is now called something else. You need to translate the new lingo in your head."
|Shaw working out in April at Penn State's training facilities |
(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
As he took in his surroundings and all that he was going to have to learn, his confidence grew.
"By the end of the first day I felt like I had been there two weeks mentally," he said.
"I definitely know this is a place where I can succeed."
Possibly the biggest adjustment he's faced so far is finding his way around Charlotte, North Carolina. He had never been there prior to reporting for his first minicamp just days after being drafted.
"It's a nice city. It's clean, there's lots to do, and I found lots of good golf courses. I'm trying to get used to the whole NASCAR thing, but other than that, it's all good," he said with a laugh.
Scout.com subscribers can listen to the rest of our Scout Radio interview with Tim Shaw where he talks more about being selected by the Panthers, provides more details about his first day with Carolina, some thoughts on new teammate and fellow rookie linebacker Jon Beason, and much more! Just click the link below to listen to this 5-minute audio clip:
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|A member of the Professional Football Writers of America, Ed Thompson's NFL and college football player interviews and features have been published across the Scout.com network and syndicated through FoxSports.com's NFL team pages.