Ka'Deem Carey was selected by the Bears in the fourth round of the draft May 10 and participated in the team's rookie minicamp last weekend at Halas Hall.
But for the running back from Arizona, it really didn't sink in that he was in the NFL until this week when he began working with Bears veterans for the first time.
"Everything came real when I was sitting in the same room as [Matt] Forte and [Jay] Cutler and all of them," Carey told ChicagoBears.com in a video interview. "It just became so real to me.
"All of the rookies, we just looked around. We didn't want to sit in their seats, so we just stood in back to wait and see if the seats were open."
Carey said the rookies received a warm reception from their veteran teammates.
"They were welcoming," he said. "They know that we're going to be a part of this journey that we're going to take ... They welcomed us with open arms."