PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — A dream coming full circle Friday evening as Peoria native Kendrick Green finally got the news he was headed to the NFL.
The Peoria High School grad and his loved ones spent the better part of the evening at a watch party in the city, crowded around a television anxiously waiting for his name to be called.
Just before 10pm, Green got the news that the Pittsburgh Steelers selected him in the third round.
Lamont Carroll, Green’s father, said they’ve been waiting for this moment for years.
“I’m very proud, very nervous all at the same time,” Carroll said.
He said his son’s loved playing football since he was about 6-years-old and going into the NFL has been a dream for about the past 15 years.
“I remember he could only play flag football because of his age so once he turned eight and started playing tackle, I thought he was pretty good but you know you don’t want to put that kind of pressure on an 8-year-old,” Carroll said. “We just stayed busy with it, played lots of sports, played lots of instruments and here we are today.”
Carroll said he always saw a bright future for his son and only wants the best for him.
“I want him to be the best that he can be whether that’s Hall of Fame, whether it’s play three or four years and get out of the league and use his degree to maybe coach,” Carroll said. “But as long as he’s doing something positive, I’m 100% behind him.”
Zack Belk, Green’s brother, said he’s glad to see all of his efforts are finally getting noticed.
“I’m just happy for him,” Belk said. “Happy that his dream since he was a little kid is coming true. Happy that all of the hard work and dedication is finally going to be rewarded.”