Hey Saints fans, welcome back to the Black and Blue Report. I'm Brianna and I am here with Nate Stupar, who is our new Saints linebacker. Hey, how are you doing?
"Good. How about you?"
I'm doing great, thanks. Congratulations for signing with the team, I know you just signed on Wednesday, coming from the Atlanta Falcons. Are you excited to be with the Saints?
"Yes, I'm super excited. I'm ready for the opportunity to come in and work hard and compete and have some fun."
Great, I mean you're moving to New Orleans, so I'm sure there is a lot of fun to be had. Is there anything that attracted you to the city?
"I mean it's just sports culture and the fan base is very, very dedicated and hard core. I'm excited to play in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome."
Definitely, and I really think the Saints fans will take you in as one of their own. Is there anything you're worried about, coming from our rival team?
"No, I'm not worried about anything, if anything it helps a lot because I know the Falcons so well because I've been playing with them the past two years and it's not going to be anything new when they come up on our schedule and I mean, obviously it was a business decision and business from their end and my end and just the best situation for me. I'm ready to connect with the fans and do whatever it takes to earn their trust and get this city behind us."
Great. So, you mentioned that you have a lot of insight being with the Falcons for two years. Is there another role you think you'll play for the Saints, as well?
"I'm coming in and I've always been a hard worker and a grinder, so whatever I can do for the Saints to help get a win is what I'm going to do. Whether it's playing defense, whether it's being backup roles for all three spots, just being kind of like a Swiss Army knife and playing in a lot of different places – I can play special teams, I've always been ace at that. I'm excited to start working with Dennis Allen, Coach (Joe) Vitt and Sean Payton and just get this ball rolling."
I'm pretty sure there is another teammate you might know – your former Penn State teammate, Michael Mauti.
Great. Did you talk to him at all during this process?
"Yes, I was texting him back and forth a lot, just asking him about the city and good places to live, about the coaches, the team and basically everything and he was just very helpful and insightful. He's also just a great teammate and a great guy. Definitely a hard worker, grinder, just like me. He has definitely earned his keep in the league. I'm excited to be teammates again with him."
Great. Do y'all have any great stories that you want to share with any of the Saints fans that may not know about you guys playing together back in college, any fun stories?
"There are tons. Just playing together, you can go back to games, competing with each other and the camp life and just messing around. No one story sticks out, but it has been a fun ride with him for the college days."
That's great, so it's like a reunion. On another note, fans may not know this, but football is in your blood. Didn't your brother play in the NFL as well?
"Yes, my brother played over three years with the Buffalo Bills as a tight end, he played at UVA for his college career. My uncle is Jeff Hostetler, he played in the league for 15 years, won Super Bowl XXV with the Giants vs. the Bills. My dad and uncle both played at Penn State and played football. You can say football is in my bloodlines."
Great, did you learn anything from them growing up? Did they teach you anything about the NFL or playing in college?
"My older brother was kind of, how do I say it – the kid who went first and experienced everything and learned everything and was the grinder through it all. He kind of paved the way for me. He worked extremely hard and earned everything he got and I think that helped me a lot, just learning through what he had to go through and especially through college and understanding that it's a business and getting into the NFL and learning to just kind of stick around and do everything you can. He's very insightful going through that journey. Obviously my uncle has helped me with talking to teams and to just gain a thought of what I want to do and the type of player I need to be. My dad has also been a major influence with that too. I know he wasn't in the league, but he played college ball at Penn State and he has also been an inspiration and such a support."
That's awesome. I know it has to be a great benefit to have all of that support and knowledge in your family and passing that on to you. I think you will be a great asset to the Saints. Is there anything else that you want to tell the Who Dat nation before we wrap this up?
"Just want to tell them you can expect 100 percent from me, if not more. I play with energy and I like to involve the crowd and I'm excited to get into that Dome and start flying around and start winning games, so expect big things and let's have some fun."
Associated Press Photos of new Saints LB Nate Stupar.