Making the jump from college football to the NFL involves more than learning the subtleties of a curl route. There are the nuances of life in the pros, the differences in living on a scholarship versus a multi-million contract and the league's expectations for players off the field. This year's rookie class will get lessons on those things and more at the 2012 NFL Rookie Symposium which starts Sunday, June 24.
The Rookie Symposium is a four-day orientation that will be held in Aurora, OH, located conveniently near the Pro Football Hall of Fame. For the first time ever, the event will include speakers and history lessons from the Hall of Fame, designed to impart a greater sense of history and tradition on the newest members of the league's fraternity.
The event will be led by Troy Vincent, NFL vice president of player engagement.
"We have reduced the number of draftees simultaneously attending the symposium to create the most favorable learning environment," said Vincent, a five-time Pro Bowler and former NFL Players Association president. "Each rookie should leave the symposium with the knowledge and history of where our game began, where it is today, and challenged to make a positive personal impact on the future of our game. The NFL and its clubs are committed to providing players with the best resources to succeed both on and off the field."
Big names populate the list of current and former players scheduled to speak at the event. The list includes: Michael Vick, Devin McCourty and LaVarr Arrington, along with retirees like Antonio Freeman and Aeneas Williams. Also there to impart some wisdom and maybe a cautionary tale or two are Pacman Jones and Terrell Owens.
Hall of Famers Michael Irvin and Carl Eller will talk to rookies at the Hall of Fame. Youngsters will also hear from an assortment of league brass, union officials and many others.
Players will attend presentations, videos and workshops in small groups, another first for the annual event, focused on core topis of "NFL history, experience, player expectations, and professional and social responsibility."
Follow all the news from the Rookie Symposium and around the league on SB Nation's NFL hub.