Vederian Lowe has been putting in the work for more than a decade and it finally paid off Sunday afternoon when the 315 pound Rockford native answered his phone.

Lowe was a standout athlete at Auburn who excelled on the football field. And in 2016 committed to play football under Lovie Smith at the University of Illinois.

Lowe would start his freshman year. The team wasn't very good but Lowe was a bright spot on the team.

Lowe's life got a little more complicated when he was only 19. He and his girlfriend Haylee (now wife) became pregnant. The young couple, not knowing what to do, looked to their family for advice. It was Lowe's grandfather that instilled the confidence in Vederian to go ahead and have the baby and to make the situation he found himself in work.

Vederian made it work and then some.

The arrival of a baby into Lowe's life gave him a new purpose in life and according to Haylee, a drive that she had never seen before.

Vederian began getting more and more national attention. Could he make a name for himself in the NFL? Possibly. Lowe thrived through a coaching change at Illinois that saw the man that recruited him, Lovie Smith, get fired and was replaced by Brett Belima. Lowe never thought of transferring, and just worked harder at getting better.

Then Lowe's life got a little more complicated. By Lowe's senior year, he and Haylee added another newborn to their family and had taken over the custody of Vederian's younger brother after their mom passed away from an enlarged heart.

Lowe was no longer a college student playing a game for teenagers, he was a man ready to take his next big step.

Lowe's entire tale is told very well in this video put together by NFL Films.

Lowe won't be the only NIC-10 alum to join a NFC North team this offseason.

Harlem grad and Syracuse standout Josh Black has been invited to tryout at Bears camp this offseason.

Black and Lowe are two offensive linemen that we will be sure to keep an eye on during the upcoming season.

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