Nashville, Tenn. Keith Embray could have given up.
He had bounced around the Canadian and Arena football leagues. He even sat out two years while earning a master's degree.
But he never let go of the hope of playing in the NFL. Now, closing in on 29, he's there a defensive end with the Tennessee Titans.
Last weekend, in his first NFL game, he picked up his first sack.
"I knew this was going to be my last go at it," Embray said. "I came in with the attitude that I don't have anything to lose. ... I'm just real happy to be here."
His teammates respect Embray's perseverance.
"This is his dream, and he's pursued it through the only path that was available to him," tackle Jason Fisk said. "It'd be very hard to do. I couldn't imagine myself doing it."
No wonder. Embray has traveled a long, twisting road since leaving the University of Utah in 1992.
He joined the NFL that year but lasted only through training camp with the San Diego Chargers and half the season on the practice squad. He spent the next 31/2 seasons with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League.