FOXBOROUGH – Like most millennials, Keion Crossen spends a lot of time staring at his cell phone.
Saturday was no exception.
Crossen spent the afternoon with some teammates constantly “refreshing the Twitter page” to check if there were any updates on whether the rookie cornerback had made the Patriots’ original 53-man roster.
Crossen said his emotions were “pretty settled” throughout the day.
“At this point, you’ve put in the work, and either you get the call or not,’’ said Crossen.
His phone never rang, however, and that was a good sign for the seventh-round pick out of tiny Western Carolina University.
Crossen had received no indication which way the team was leaning but he knew he “had put in a good amount of work and I was just blessed not to get the call.’’
The 5-foot-10-inch, 185-pounder said he enjoyed the moment at 4:01 p.m. but at 4:02, he turned his focused toward preparing for the season opener against the Texans Sunday.
“Hard work, dedication, being persistent, and like I said, God deserves the glory and that’s what I lean on the most,’’ Crossen said when asked how he got from Western Carolina to the Patriots’ 53-man roster.
Crossen credited the coaching staff with helping him get acclimated and smoothing his rough edges, especially after a tough Week 2 preseason game against the Eagles in which he drew two pass interference calls.
“They did a great job of working with me and making sure I understood the transition from college to pros as far as the defensive back standpoint,’’ he said.
Crossen bounced back nicely with strong performances in the final two exhibition games, separating himself from the pack of young corners looking to secure a spot.
“Obviously after the penalties I was just trying to fix the errors that I was making,’’ said Crossen, who said many of his teammates offered encouragement after the flags. “So the next play was the thing I had in mind that night. That night was just an eye-opening night for me and kind of fixed everything and carried them over the next few weeks.’’
Crossen didn’t make any celebratory calls on Saturday but finally spoke to his parents on Sunday. Amazingly, mom and dad had no idea he had made the cut “until I told them.’’
He said “they enjoy that I get to enjoy my dream” but their reactions were pretty opposite.
“My mom cried, my dad’s a little tough, so he played a little hard ball,’’ said Crossen. “But they’re happy. They’re happy parents.”