Conference Call With New Orleans Media
Saturday, May 10, 2014
You had another year of eligibility remaining, what led into your decision to come out early and how do you feel you are going to fit in with the Saints?
“I thought it was time. I’ve been waiting for this my whole life. My ultimate goal was to get to the next level. Football is not just a game to me, it is a lifestyle. Being able to have an opportunity to take the next step, I thought that was the best decision for me. So I made that decision. I feel like God has his plans always. Looking back and pro day and seeing the whole defensive staff come out; He definitely had his eyes and his plans in the right place for me. I feel like I am going to be a great fit for them. I think the tenacity that they are. I am a passionate guy when it comes to this game and I like the defensive mindset that they have in New Orleans. I am just happy to be a New Orleans Saint.”
Did you talk to Rob Ryan at all in this process?
“They were actually pretty quiet about it besides the one time at pro day. I kind of had a feeling, just didn’t know.”
Why did you have that feeling?
“I thought I did a good job with them starting from the time when were at the combine. I sat down with them and we went over some play stuff and I felt like I had a good feel, they got a good feel for me and how I would fit in. When they came out to pro day and had their staff out and I was able to show them what I was able to do and my ability, I felt like that was what took care of it for me.”
How do you see yourself being used on defense?
“Man, to tell you the truth, I see myself being used anywhere they want me to be. I feel like I am an athlete and I can be placed anywhere and I am capable of doing the things that they want me to do.”
Is special teams a strength of yours?
“Off and on during my collegiate career, I feel like, like I said, I love this game and whatever it takes, that’s not something that I am opposed to. I feel like that is definitely going to be a strength of mine because I play the game the way I play it.”
You were the number one prospect in the country coming out of high school. Is it a disappointment to you that you were not a first round draft pick or do you use it as a motivation?
“It is not a disappointment because I’ve been through so much adversity in life and I have grown to be the man that I am now. I use it and I’ve been watching for the past couple of days and I am using it all for motivation. I wasn’t a first round pick so I got to prove to everybody and myself because my expectation for myself is definitely greater than anybody out there. I definitely have to play with that chip and I’ve always been that kind of guy to try and beat myself every day. It is definitely a great motivation for me.”
Did you tear your ACL more than once or did you have two surgeries to repair the same injury?
“No, I had a cadaver. I was actually coming along well. I was trying to come back at six months. I actually tweaked it a little bit. It happened. I had to go get a whole other surgery because of the cadaver you couldn’t tell if it was intact or not.”
And you said you’ve had a lot of adversities, are you speaking mostly of injuries or is there anything else that you were referencing?
“Mostly injuries but playing in college is not an easy road for everyone. Just some of the things that you go through through (at) college and things that you learn and grow from are some of those things that you never forget about.”