INDIANAPOLIS — Everywhere Nebraska kicker Drew Brown goes, a little piece of former teammate Sam Foltz goes with him.
Brown met with NFL teams and officials at the combine this week, and his thoughts of his friend remain close to him. In fact, in every interview, workout and media session, Brown’s memory of Foltz never leaves him.
“I wore my No. 27 necklace everywhere I go,” Brown said. “Obviously it’s not going to help me kick better, it’s not going to help me interview better, it’s not going to make me smarter. I think it’s just a good representation of what kind of person he was to me and what he meant to me as a friend and as a teammate.
“He had a lot to do with where I am today.”
Foltz, who was Nebraska’s punter, tragically was killed in 2016 in a car accident that also claimed the life of former Michigan State punter Mike Sadler. Foltz was one of the nation’s best punters and was entering his senior season at Nebraska. He also was Brown’s holder for field goals and extra points.
Brown has tried to represent Foltz since the tragedy. He wore Foltz’s No. 27 jersey at the East-West Shrine Game in January.
“He truly did get the best of me on and off the field,” Brown said. “I can’t thank him enough for everything he did for me, and it’s one of my duties and along with a lot of other people to carry on his legacy.
“He would have had an outstanding NFL career, so that’s hopefully something that I can achieve for myself and achieve for him and his family, too.”
During informal meetings with NFL officials, Brown fielded questions about how he handled the situation.
“How I was able to deal with it, how did our specialist group deal with it while having to play a football season,” Brown said of the questions he received.
Brown was one of the nation’s best kickers during his time with Nebraska. He connected on 45 of 55 field-goal attempts (81.8 percent) and drilled 119 of 121 extra points.