Catching Up With Former Player Rep: Victor Green
A former NFL safety, Victor Green played 11 seasons between the New York Jets, New England Patriots, and New Orleans Saints. He attended the University of Akron and declared as an undrafted free agent in 1993. We recently caught up with New York Jets All-Time Four Decade Team Member and he gave us insight into his life during and after football.
What is your proudest moment as a Player Rep?
I think my proudest moment as a Player Rep was just gathering information when we were out in Hawaii and understanding the whole concept and lay of the land. Understanding what Player Reps are really about and what we were in meetings for. We were kind of making rules, sort of you know? We were there to try to figure out what is going to be the best for your teammates and what is the best for the players in the league. I think the best part for me was just trying to get the best product we could put out for our players. So that once we leave the game, we can be in better shape than when we came in.
What was your experience like as a Player Rep?
Once I became a Player Rep, I wish I had done it earlier. Once I understood what it was about, I loved being that and just being able to understand what would make things better, the league better, and what would make us as players go out there and want to do our job better knowing that once we leave the game, things will be in line and what and what we will need to continue our lifestyle.
How has your career been since transitioning out of the league?
My transition was pretty smooth. I went into television with Comcast. I was there three nights a week and then I went to Fox Sports Radio. I was there every Sunday and Monday, talking about the previous games and then eventually getting into business-type things. So, the transition for me has been pretty smooth. How I have transitioned from the game has been through discipline. Discipline is the thing that we need as players to succeed every year when someone's trying to take your job. You had to have that discipline, you had to have that perseverance, and that determination. I think about that transition into life after football and it helped me kind of prolong my life as well as make money.
What is the biggest lesson you have learned from your experience in the league and how do you apply it to your life now?
I think the biggest lesson from the league is teammates and how to work well with others. When I left the game, I went into business and I was going live with other players or other commentators, and we had to talk before each live session that we went on air and had to all be on the same page. I know you have different scripts that you talk about, but even in business life, you have to trust your teammates and I think that's one of the biggest things that I learned once I left the game is how do I continue to trust employers, employees or the people that you're doing business with?
What is one piece of advice you wish you had known before transitioning into life after football?
I think the biggest thing for me would be lining up things before I left the game. I started kind of doing that, but you need to start doing it in your 3rd, or 4th, or 5th year in the game, not like I did in my 10th. Once the game is done and has ended, players get depressed, and they don't know what they want to do, and they struggle. I would tell anybody to absolutely start building those relationships and building those connections because you never know when you are going to need it and not burning the bridges. I have a golf tournament now, right? That's very successful and that sells out but building a relationship once I got into the game, you know, it was hard, right? If you have those relationships already leading to retirement, it will make it easier. I would say you can start doing what you need to do a lot sooner rather than later.
What milestones have you hit in your current career that you are most proud of?
I think my milestone would be family for me. I have been with my wife for 28 years and I have three successful kids. Kennedy graduated from Williams, and she has my grandbaby, my daughter Victoria just graduated with her Master's in September, and in February my son will graduate early from UNC-Chapel Hill, where he is the starting running back. So those accomplishments are my proudest moments. Yes, you have your individual accolades: I got my street sign, I got a key to the city, and I got the handprint of the President of the United States, Jimmy Carter, the former president. Those are all individual accolades, but my proudest thing is having a 28-year marriage and having three successful kids. All graduating from college and are going to do great things in life and those are my biggest and most proud milestones.
What characteristics from the game do you apply to life?
My 5 words in life are persistence, consistency, dedication, perseverance, and control. I feel that if you have those five things, you can be successful. I used those in the league, and I still use them now. My son has it tattooed on his arm, that is how well he believes it right? So those are things for me, consistency, persistence, dedication, perseverance, and control. That is what I live by and that is how I do my things. I try to do everything as consistently and as dedicatedly as I possibly can, and there are going to be bumps and everything's not going to go as planned. But that is where perseverance comes in; you have to be able to weather the storm.
How do you create a team environment in your day-to-day life?
My wife is my team, and my employees are my team. I run a foundation and have a team of people who help me run my foundation. We must work together, right? The one goal is to raise as much money as we can through business or through our charity organizations. I love that Joe Namath said, “I've figured out that life in general is a team effort; it's a team game.’ Throughout life, you are going to have teamwork and its different facets, right? Football is the players, with a company it is your employees, and with your family, it's your kids and it’s your wife. Everybody must play the same game and to be successful, you must be of the same accord. Sometimes there will be a missing link and that is where trouble comes in. I think if you can get everybody on the same page and you can trust the people to do their job and not micromanage, I think that is where it comes in for me.