Reporting Daryl Ruiter
BEREA (92.3 The Fan) – The Cleveland Browns signed running back Robbie Rouse the team announced Saturday.
Rouse, who was attending rookie minicamp on a tryout basis, started 26 of the 50 games in which he appeared for Fresno State.
“It was a great feeling and feels like the hard work paid off,” Rouse said. “It’s a dream growing up as a child to be a professional football player and now I’m here. I’m just grateful for this [opportunity] and am thankful.”
Rouse was on his way to Dallas to spend the weekend with the Cowboys when the Browns called so he turned around to come to Cleveland where thought he’d actually get a contract.
It’s not often that a player of his height makes it in the NFL but it’s something that he hopes will be an advantage for him and not a negative.
“My quickness and my ability to catch the ball [help],” Rouse said. “My size too because my lineman, they’re 6-6, 6-4; you can’t see me and by the time they can it’s too late and I can use my change of direction ability to make them miss.
“It’s always been hard for a player like me [with my size] so I have to work hard.”
The 5-6, 190-pound back finished as Fresno State’s all time career rushing leader with 4,647 yards and 37 touchdowns. Rouse added 110 receptions and 794 receiving yards in 4 seasons. He ran for over 1,000 yards in each of his final 3 seasons at Fresno and totaled 21-career 100 yard rushing games.
The Browns are pretty deep at running back starting with Trent Richardson. Then there’s Chris Ogbonnaya and Montario Hardesty in the mix as well but Rouse isn’t the least bit worried.
“I’m just going to learn the playbook to the best of my abilities and bring what I can to the table,” Rouse said. “Just catching the ball and making people miss; I want to be a complete running back and see where I can fit into the offense.
“I’m here to work hard.”
Rouse is the 19th player to be signed as an undrafted rookie free agent this offseason by the team.