Briean Boddy-Calhoun's first goal was just to make a NFL roster. The rookie cornerback from Minnesota went undrafted and, after a training camp in Jacksonville, eventually landed on his feet in Cleveland less than a week before the season opener.
When it was over, Boddy-Calhoun — or better known as "BBC" around by his Browns coaches and teammates— finished the year as both one of the team's most productive defenders and one of several promising young players following a trying 1-15 season.
"This season was everything, it was my rookie year and my No. 1 goal was to make it through my rookie year, to make it on a team and the Cleveland Browns gave me that opportunity," he said.
"And all I wanted to do was seize that and once I got in the door, I just wanted to impress my teammates and impress my coaches and I think I did that.
"Now, more importantly, it's about coming back even better."
Boddy-Calhoun's three interceptions tied for the most by a Brown this past season and the most among his fellow rookies around the league. He also tied for third with 14 passes defensed and was the only NFL rookie with at least one sack, one interception and one interception-touchdown (Week 3 against Miami) this year.
"When he gets beat, he always comes back and makes another play," cornerback Jamar Taylor said. "He shows good resilience and that's what you need out of a young player. I think he's going to be something to reckon with."
It was Taylor, after all, who took the youngster under his wing. "I wouldn't have had the success I had if it wasn't for him," Boddy-Calhoun said.
And now, with a year of experience under his belt, he'll spend the next few months refining the fundamentals and technical aspects of playing cornerback. Boddy-Calhoun added he'll also use that time for personal growth and reflection away from the field.
"I know I want to become a better man, become a better brother, a better boyfriend, a better man overall and as far as football goes, I know I've got a lot of things to clean up, I know I've got to come back better from my rookie year," he said. "It's just about taking that next step in life."
He's also equally aware there's no time to rest on past laurels.
"I'm a player who loves progression — I love progression in anything. So I'm really excited for this offseason because it's an opportunity for me to get better," he said.
"It's an opportunity for me to prove to my coaches once again that I'm a good player, prove to my teammates that I'm a good player, that it wasn't just my rookie year or anything like that and my ceiling is high."