Arian Foster (born August 24, 1986) is a professional football player who plays running back for the Houston Texans. Signed by the Texans as an undrafted free agent in 2009, the Tennessee alumnus was added to the Texans' active roster from the practice squad on November 17, 2009. Foster is known for his vision which enables him to find rushing lanes and for his signature Namaste bow which he frequently performs after scoring a touchdown. He holds the Texans franchise records for rushing yards and rushing touchdowns and is generally considered to be one of the best running backs in the NFL.
Foster was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, but, in 2002, following his parents' divorce he moved to San Diego, to be with his father, Carl Foster, a former wide receiver for the University of New Mexico. Playing at Mission Bay Senior High School, he initially played linebacker, but became a full-time running back in his senior year. That year, he led San Diego County in all purpose yards with 2,500 while compiling 2,093 rushing yards and 24 touchdowns in addition to six scores on kickoff returns. In one game against Claremont, Foster ran for 321 yards. Following the season, he was named San Diego Union Tribune All-San Diego Western League Player of the Year and received All-West Region appointment by PrepStar. He also earned All-California Interscholastic Federation honors. University of Tennessee offensive coordinator Randy Sanders and running back coach Trooper Taylor were impressed by Foster and he ultimately chose to attend Tennessee as part of the 2004 signing class.
Foster's college career peaked in his junior year. He finished the season with 245 carries for 1,193 yards and 12 touchdowns, while catching 39 passes for 340 yards and an additional two TDs.
A subpar senior campaign, as well as scouts' concerns that he was a below-average pass-blocker, repeated lapses regarding ball security and less-than-stellar reviews from Tennessee staff members who portrayed him as selfish and hard to coach, caused his draft value to diminish. A pulled hamstring that prevented him from working out at the NFL Scouting Combine, did little to help his cause. He went undrafted in 2009. Several teams showed interest in him as a rookie free agent, but he chose to sign with the Houston Texans because he thought it provided him with the best opportunity.¹
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