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QB Litton happy to be back on the field

SEATTLE – For Chase Litton, being on a field and throwing a football Tuesday was a pleasant change of pace.

To say the quarterback’s minicamp experience has been unplanned, would be an understatement.

But, for the 6-foot-5 Marshall product, the only thing that matters right now is being with his teammates and living in the moment.

“It’s just nice to be back playing football, back with my guys,” he said. “I was lucky enough to be here on the first day an I got to meet some new people, so being on the field with them, it’s exciting.”

When Litton landed in Seattle on Dec. 3, he expected to be focused on football as he started the next phase in his professional career after spending his rookie season with Kansas City and much of this season on Jacksonville’s practice squad before being released in late October.

However, shortly after arriving, a family emergency forced him to fly back to Tampa, Fla.

“You deal with things with family and life,” he said. “My teammates have accepted me. My coaches have accepted me. They’ve told me they have my back and they’re going to support me regardless of what you’ve got going.”

Litton preferred to keep the details of his trip private, saying it was an issue with his mother’s health.

“I’m just going to leave it at that,” he said. “She’s trying to get healthy and she’s happy I’m here.”

He tried to fly back from Tampa to Seattle once earlier in camp, but after flying into Denver, he was forced to head home a second time before making it back to Seattle.

“I ended up calling coach (Jim Zorn),” he said. “He was very understanding. He let me go back, take care of my family and do what I’ve got to do.”

After spending a few more days in Tampa, he made another call.

“Hey coach, I’m on a flight right now,” he said.

For Litton, it was time to get back to football.

“My mother knew,” he said. “My family knew. This is my dream and this is what I want to do.”

Fortunately for Litton, he was able to get his iPad with the playbook on it before he flew home the first time, so he spent the minicamp days he missed getting acquainted with the offense. He had photos on his phone and wrote notes on cards.

“I was prepared,” he said.

After spending most of Monday’s practice watching, Litton was able to dive in Tuesday. His journey to Seattle didn’t start as planned, but he isn’t complaining.

“This is my journey,” he said. “A lot of times people get fed up with, ‘why me? Why am I dealing with this? Why is it easier for other people?’ But this is my journey. I’m supposed to be right here. I’m not supposed to anywhere else. I know that. God knows that. My family knows that.”

While he has only been in Seattle for a few days, Litton said he is already enjoying the opportunity to work with Zorn.

“It’s amazing,” he said. “He’s pure comedy. Outside of his knowledge of football, he’s pure comedy.”

But, more important than Zorn’s sense of humor and his understanding of the quarterback position, Litton most appreciated his coach’s willingness to listen to his story and be understanding of what was happening back in Tampa.

“Just to have that feeling, have that love and support from a guy you’ve only been around for 48 hours and just to know he’s got my back and he’s looking out for me, that was big for me,” he said. “I got to open up to him and really tell him what was going on with my life, my family. He accepted me with open arms and, that alone, spoke volumes to me and my family.”

Joining a team that has already been practicing for the better part of two weeks isn’t the easiest challenge, but quarterbacks Brandon Silvers – Litton’s roommate – and BJ Daniels have welcomed their new teammate, helping to ease the acclimation process.  

“It’s a great room,” he said. “I’m rooming with Brandon and I love it. People always think it’s quarterbacks, it’s competition, I get that, but I’m not a hater. Brandon’s not a hater, neither is BJ. We’re three guys chasing the same journey, chasing the same dream. We’ve been brought together here now and we’re happy, we’re excited.

“We know it comes down to the best player and that’s what we love. Competing and being that guy.”

When camp ends later this week, Litton will fly back to Tampa and spend the holidays with his family before heading to Houston for training camp. Between football and family, he has a lot on his mind, but he is doing what he can to simplify things as much as possible.  

“Right now, I take it day by day,” he said. “I don’t think about tomorrow. I don’t think about things I can’t control. I’m in Seattle right now. I’m playing for the Dragons and this is still my chapter of the story.”

After the Dragons wrapped up team meetings around 8 p.m. on Monday, Litton spent more than an hour talking with Zorn before deciding he needed to go for a walk in the city to clear his head.

“I just wanted to see the city, clear my head with everything going on back home and here,” he said. “I loved it. It was cold as hell, but I loved it. Just seeing people, seeing stores, building, it just makes you sit back and realize that, whatever you’re going through, there’s a lot worse out there. It makes you cherish everything you’re going through.”