HOUSTON (AP) Arian Foster used to have suits in an array of colors and fabrics, and plenty of bow ties to pull those ensembles together.
But these days there's no chance you'll catch the Houston Texans running back in such fancy garb.
''I got tired of wearing suits,'' he said. ''So I threw all my suits away. I have no suits.''
Now the four-time Pro Bowler only dresses casually, preferring t-shirts and sweat pants no matter the occasion.
''They don't serve me,'' he said of suits. ''I know not everybody can do that. I understand that. But for me that's what makes me happy and I've lived my entire life trying to make other people happy and it's tiring. It gets old.''
At a recent event, every man in the room wore a sport coat or a button-up shirt and the women donned party dresses and stiletto heels. In the middle of it all was Foster, wearing a cream-colored long-sleeved thermal shirt and gray sweat pants with the bright orange cast covering his injured right leg peeking out of the bottom of the pants.
He knew that everyone was ''looking at me crazy,'' but the 29-year-old simply didn't care.
''It's just being me,'' he said. ''Just being comfortable. I don't mean any disrespect by dressing any kind of way, but I'm just a happy human being and I love being comfortable.''
There was a time when Foster embraced dressing up and was one of the more uniquely dressed players in the NFL.
''I used to have bow ties, fedoras, all of that,'' he said. ''I was going (hard) on it.''
Along with the fedoras and bow ties, he would often pair luxe designer scarves with suits perfectly tailored to his 6-foot-1, 227-pound frame.
Always known as one of the league's forward thinkers, Foster has experienced a time of intense introspection in the last year. This is one of the conclusions he came to about his life.
''I really don't feel comfortable in those clothes,'' he said. ''For me it's more than physical. It's like a statement. It's like saying who you are is not necessarily something that you're trying to impress for anybody else. You have to be who you are.''
Despite his shunning of almost all things fashionably, Foster does still sport one signature item that's currently very popular. He's a big fan of plastic Lokai bracelets and often wears one on both of his wrists.
The beaded bracelets, which are intended to encourage balance in life, have one white bead filled with water from Mount Everest, the highest point on earth, and a black bead filled with mud from the Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth. He likes them so much that he's handed them out to both teammates and coaches, and on any given day the bracelets can be seen on wrists throughout Houston's locker room.
Players are generally required to wear suits when traveling with the team to out of town games. Since Foster is injured and out for the season, he won't make any more trips this year. But he hopes to play again, and it will be interesting to see if he makes an issue out of the dress code next season.
He didn't address that possibility, but might have given a hint to his intentions when someone called him the ''most interesting man in the football'' and he sheepishly responded by saying he's more like the ''most rebellious man in football.''
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