They tell me this is the hardest part

This is the start of a weekly diary of Dallas native DeMarcus Love's quest to make an NFL team. Love, who attended Carter High School and the University of Arkansas, is projected to be picked late in the first round or early in the second.

The offensive lineman can play tackle or guard, but NFL teams want him mainly at tackle.

Spend some time with Love as he describes his journey to the NFL.

The first installment has him talking about his preparations for the National Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. Love is working out at the Michael Johnson Performance Center in McKinney, Texas, and has plans to leave Wednesday and come back Saturday night after his workouts.

It's been a week where we've been tapering down, going away from what we've been doing. Just grinding. Just more technique and getting smooth and getting ready for that transition for the combine. I'm excited and nervous at the same time for the combine. I'm nervous as far as putting up the right numbers, like running the 40 and the shuttle drills and making sure I get the right number. I have a goal for what I want to run the 40 in, but I want to keep that to myself right now.

I live in McKinney, Texas, for the time being because I'm working out at the Michael Johnson Performance Center. It's nice and quiet out here. I can just chill and get something nice to eat. There is not much to do out here unless you go to Dallas. Frisco is the next town over and it has a big mall and I went there the other day. This apartment I have is like a college atmosphere. Behind the apartments is this Super Target. When I went there [Thursday night] I got some mouthwash and some sleeping pills.

I can't sleep. It's hard for me to go to sleep at times because I'm so amped up from working out and I have to get my rest.

My family has come out here three times. They come from Oak Cliff [a section of Dallas], about a 45-minute drive. My mom and stepdad. I call him my real dad because I didn't know my real dad, and I'm the oldest of two other brothers, so it's good to see them at times.

When I see them, it's good.

While I'm here there are a lot of pro guys working out. I don't talk to them much, but I've seen them, like Sergio Kindle, the tight end from the Cowboys, Martellus Bennett. Thursday, Akin Ayodele, who used to play for the Boys. Michael Irvin was out here too. Donald Driver was here too. I know who they are just seeing them on TV.

[Tuesday] I will do some recovery work and get a massage and then get to Indy. I got a 7:30 a.m. flight. Man, that's early. The earliest flight I've ever taken was 7 a.m. I had to get up around 5 a.m.

This is one of many things I'll be doing. This will be a long process and a lot of the pro guys are telling me this is the toughest part, the last year of college all the stuff you got to do, and after that it smooths out after your rookie year.

We'll find out.