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Baltimore native Chris Braswell ready to make NFL dreams come true: 'Definitely a blessing'

Baltimore native Chris Braswell ready for NFL dream to come true
Baltimore native Chris Braswell ready for NFL dream to come true 03:35

BALTIMORE - Chris Braswell is a name to watch during this week's NFL Draft.

The defensive end from Alabama, and a Baltimore native, is projected to be anywhere from a late first-round pick to a third-round pick, according to ESPN.

Braswell, who played his high school football at Baltimore's St. Frances Academy, played all 14 games last season at Alabama and led the team with three forced fumbles. He also recorded 42 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, eight sacks, a blocked kick and an interception return for a touchdown.

Braswell sat down with his cousin, WJZ's Miana Massey, before his professional football dream becomes a reality. 

"You know too I've dreamed about this since I was a kid and just to be here and be in this position is definitely a blessing," Braswell said.

The first round of the NFL Draft takes place on Thursday, followed by the second and third rounds on Friday. The final four rounds will be on Saturday.

But, to be selected in the draft is a moment Braswell has been waiting for his entire life. 

Braswell is listed at 6 feet, 3 inches tall and about 250 pounds. 

He's unsure when and where he will go in the draft, but it's unknown that keeps him on his toes. 

"It could be anywhere in the United States, West Coast, East, South, Northeast, Arizona, so it's very nerve-racking," Braswell said.

In the meantime, there are no days off for Braswell.

He reminisced on rec ball days with Overlea and Perry Hall. His dad, and namesake, is a major influence. 

"He always had football on the TV, always had the ball around," Braswell said. "We've watched Ravens games at your house, my house, just seeing that I've always had a love for it." 

But it wasn't until high school at St. Frances that his NFL dreams felt like a realistic goal. He was a Top 10 college recruit. 

"I knew I could go pro in practice when I was going up against pro-ready tackles and getting wins against them," Braswell said. "I knew there, yeah, I can go professional."

Braswell's long-time trainer Bobby Esbrandt told WJZ he is proud but not surprised.   

"He's one of the most athletic kids I've ever worked with," Esbrandt said. "Chris is one of those guys where you just knew he had a bright future and he's one of those guys that was destined to have this day." 

Braswell has a message for children from Baltimore who have dreams of becoming a professional athlete.

"Especially being from Baltimore, just keep working hard don't let anyone tell you that you can't do something," Braswell said. 

And a message for his family and friends?

"Thank you for the support," Braswell said.

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