Aaron Ross: Driving Home

Posted Sep 30, 2017

In college. In the pros. Certainly in marriage. Aaron Ross has been a winner everywhere he goes.

Now he wants you to get there, too.  

The former Giants cornerback and two-time Super Bowl champion runs Ross Elite Chauffeur Service these days in Austin, Texas, where he is still a big man on campus after a distinguished career as a Longhorn. He got the idea from his days sitting in traffic to and from East Rutherford.  

“Of course, you don’t drive too many places there,” Ross said. “I had a driver, so sitting in a car with him and hearing the ins and outs of the business and learning the business, knowing that I was going to retire soon, I wanted to start something on my own and pass down to my kids. Everyone loves to be serviced, so we wanted to be a service company.”

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"Texas is home, the same way the Giants embraced me in the organization. It’s a love that can’t be broken."

Originally the 20th overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, Ross won the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation’s top defensive back in his final season at Texas, where he was also named team MVP. A year before that, he helped lead the Longhorns to their first national championship in 35 years.

Then the rings really started to pile up.

The Giants drafted him into a defense that was the backbone of a championship run in his rookie year. Ross couldn’t believe his eyes when he put on his Giants uniform for the first time.

“Once I saw those guys, it was like, ‘Oh man, I played with him on video games. Oh man, it’s [Michael] Strahan,’” Ross recalled. “And then to be a part of a defense that has people like Sam Madison that you watched all the time as a kid, as a DB, to bring you in, it made my rookie year a lot smoother.”

Smooth is an understatement.

In just his fifth NFL game, Ross broke out with two interceptions against the Jets, one of which he returned 43 yards for a touchdown to seal a victory. He grabbed another the following week in Atlanta as the Giants went on to set a league record with 11 road wins. 

“It seemed like everybody was locked in and focused on every game at a time with the ultimate goal of getting to that Super Bowl,” Ross said. “And then to be able to play the Patriots again in the Super Bowl, I think we had a lot of confidence knowing that we matched up with them really well. Our defensive line outmatched their offensive line. We felt that [defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo] put together a great scheme to really put pressure on [Tom] Brady. I don’t think there was one guy on the sideline that didn’t feel like we couldn’t win that game.”

Ross went on to play out the sequel in Super Bowl XLVI before hanging up the cleats for good in 2015. He married his college sweetheart, Sanya Richards-Ross, a four-time Olympic gold medalist in track and field, and the two welcomed their first child this past year. 

When Ross isn’t changing diapers or running his company with his wife, he is back on the field helping out the next generation of defensive backs at Texas.

“Now that I’m retired and done with my first love, I’m coming back to UT to kind of give back to the younger guys,” Ross said. “There’s a lot of things I wished I would have known as a collegiate athlete, as a young man, that I just want to instill in them. Texas is home, the same way the Giants embraced me in the organization. It’s a love that can’t be broken. Once a Giant, always a Giant -- and I bleed orange at the same time.”

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