EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Fifteen minutes before Saturday's 6 p.m. ET deadline, Adewale Ojomo received the call that he wouldn't be part of the Giants' 53-man roster. The fact that it came down to the wire meant he was one of the last men out.
The defensive end took some consolation out of it, but he was still without a team.
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VIEW: Today's Practice Photos "I spoke to [Giants general manager] Jerry Reese, and he told me that I was good enough, that it was just a numbers thing," Ojomo said Wednesday. "And that if something happened, I'd be the first guy that they would move up. So it was just a little disappointing, but I still would have a job so I kept the faith and knew that I would have another opportunity."
He was right.
A day later, after clearing waivers, Ojomo was signed to the Giants' practice squad. Then the "something" happened when running back Andre Brown was placed on the injured reserve/designated to return list on Wednesday, freeing up a roster spot.
Ojomo, who was on the active roster all of 2012 as a rookie but dressed for only one game, was promoted and once again part of the Giants' 53.
For how long or what it will bring, Ojomo will find out.
"I'm closer to the field, and that's what I want to do," he said. "I want to be great on the field. It's not about fame. It's not about money. It's not about anything else. I just want to play football at this point. That's it."
Undrafted out of Miami in 2012, Ojomo earned a roster spot with four sacks in three preseason games last year. He followed up with 2.5 more in 2013, including a sack in the preseason finale against New England.
However, there is more to football than rushing the passer. Ojomo hadn't shown enough in the other departments, as evidenced in him being the odd man out.
But such is life in the NFL. He, his teammates, and one former Giant-turned-Falcon knew he wouldn't be on the outside looking in when the 2013 season began.
"Kiwi [defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka] is always in my ear," Ojomo said. "He told me when you play that well, you're going to be on somebody's 53, you're going to be playing football somewhere. I spoke to Osi [Umenyiora], too. Osi is over there in Atlanta, and I told him I haven't forgotten the techniques that he showed me. He responded and said, 'Well, you'll be on somebody's 53-man roster for sure.' That just gave me motivation and encouragement to keep the faith."