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CJ Spiller Has First NFL Practice for Buffalo Bills, Tours Niagara Falls

2:26 PM, May 20, 2010   |    comments
C.J. Spiller talked with WLTX's sister station WGRZ in Buffalo after his first NFL practice with the Bills.
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Buffalo, NY (WLTX, WGRZ) -- A month after being picked first by the Buffalo Bills in the NFL Draft, pro running back C.J. Spiller talked about his first practice and his first trip to Niagara Falls.

"Just working on getting the team together," Spiller said about working out for the first time with the Bills, "Getting the team together and get us going."

He was picked ninth overall during the 2010 NFL Draft. Previous Coverage: Clemson's C.J. Spiller Picked by Buffalo, 9th Overall in NFL Draft

Spiller, who was named ACC Player of the Year last season while at Clemson, says he's ready to start the season with his new team.

"It's very exciting," Spiller said, "We got a great group of guys, and I think everyone's on the same page right now." But that excitement can't match what it's like to hear your name during the First Round of the NFL Draft, right?

"It was an awesome feeling. All the hard work that you had to put in," Spiller said, "You know, I always wanted to play in the NFL as a little boy, and that dream finally came true. But at the same time, I know work still had to be done. You know, getting drafted is just one step. Now, it's time to put in the work and my job is to try to help this organization out as much as I can." Spiller showed his selfless work ethic and drive to excel while at Clemson, earning the distinct honor of sole player in the NCAA to pass, receive, rush, return kickoffs and a punt for a touchdown during a season.

Spiller knows his versatility will help him on Sundays, despite the critics who think he can only wear one hat. "I think I'm an all-around guy. I can run the ball; I can catch the ball. I've been blessed enough to where I can do the return game. I love running it, and that's what I've been doing my whole life, but I have been blessed to do other things."

The running back doesn't want to be typecast into any one role, "Since my speed, people call me a 'speed back.' I know what I can do as a player, and I'm just going to take it one day at a time."

Certainly, the move from scenic Clemson and sunny Florida to the relative chill of Buffalo has been quite the transition for Spiller, but the warm nature of the folks in the area make him feel like he's home.

"The whole Buffalo family has been nothing but encouraging, and showing nothing but support. Everyone's excited about getting the season started and my main thing is to not put too much pressure on it. Just do what I've been doing my whole life, and that's play football."

Spiller knows that college ball and pro ball are very different games.

"You realize that it's a business, and that's how you have to approach it. You don't have nothing else to worry about. This is your job now. You have to take care of your job, if you want to keep it. You have to do the little things right. You gotta be willing to sacrifice some things, that's things I've done in college, so I don't think that that part will really be a big adjustment for me. [sic]." But on the field, Spiller is confident in his ability. "Of course the speed of the game will totally be different than what it was. I think once learn what you're doing, you can slow the game down to your own pace. I think it will be fine."

The running back doesn't let his ego get in the way of what he feels is important to the game: maintaining a selfless and positive attitude.

"That's what it's all about. You gotta stay humble. I got a great Christian background, and that's where I hang my hat. I understand that I've been blessed enough, but at the same time, if I start getting out of line, that everthing can be taken from me. I just stay grounded and just go about everyday life," said Spiller.

While in New York, Spiller hasn't had to spend all of his time practicing, as he got a chance to do a little sight-seeing with his fellow rookies.

"I'd never been to New York until draft time. Coming up to Niagara Falls was awesome. You always see it in magazines or on TV, and actually coming down and seeing it in person! It was a beautiful sight," Spiller said, "It's something that I'll bring my family up to once they come up and visit."

But Spiller says he spent time somewhere else that was much more important to him.

"My biggest thing was going to the Boys and Girls Club, putting a smile on kids' faces. Of course going to see the Falls is great, but putting a smile on a kid's face--that means more to me."

And when 2011 rolls around, Spiller said "Hopefully, we can reach that Super Bowl."

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