SAN ANTONIO - For a new team in a new league, familiarity is hard to come by. But for San Antonio Commanders defensive lineman Ashaad Mabry, familiarity is exactly why he joined the team.
"I heard about this league and this opportunity, so I wanted the chance to come back and play in my city," Mabry said.
The former MacArthur High star has played his fair share of snaps in the Alamo City. Mabry took his talents to UTSA post-high school, starring for the Roadrunners before spending four seasons in the NFL. He was waived by the Carolina Panthers last August.
"So far it feels very similar to the NFL camps. The way its run, you can tell that these guys are professionals and that they've been around," Mabry said.
With the Commanders, Mabry will play on the same turf that helped launch his collegiate and professional careers. While he'd love another chance to play in the NFL, Mabry says he's just enjoying the ride.
"I'm just using this as a special opportunity to come back and play in front of my family and friends. If the next step is available, its all part of God's plan."
The Commanders kick off their inaugural season against San Diego, Feb. 9. Kickoff is at 8 p.m. at the Alamodome.