Conference Call Transcript: DE Willie Young

Posted Apr 24, 2010

On what he knows about the Detroit Lions
“The Lions is an organization right now that has been going through some ups and downs. But at some point in time, teams tend to make their positive strides moving forward and I think the Lions right now – the program, with this particular draft class – I feel like it’s outstanding. It will obviously be a privledge to be on the same practice field as Ndamukong Suh.

“As far as my emotion goes, I’m excited. It’s an opportunity. I know that I’ve never sold myself short of anything – it’s hard for me to explain my emotions right now. I don’t know how I feel. I’m sitting doing this interview and in my head I’m thinking the entire time; I just haven’t really calmed down yet. I’m just excited about the opportunity.”

On whether he thought he would go higher and if he’s disappointed to be drafted in the seventh round
“No I’m not disappointed at all. I was more so anticipating where I would be and where I would start my new life at. My entire life will change from this point on. I think that’s more what it was and what I was anticipating. Where I would get drafted? I just enjoy playing the game of football so much that I never really got caught up into that. I just wanted an opportunity and I’m excited about that opportunity.”
On what position he will play on Detroit’s defense
“Yes, I will be playing at defensive end with my hand down – yes sir.”
On whether they have told him anything else that they will expect from him
“Being a defensive player and me knowing myself, you don’t necessarily have to inform me on being a hard worker, coming in and taking coaching, being coached hard – that’s second nature to me right now. I don’t really think about that part of it. Coach (Kocurek) said he was going to coach me (hard) and that’s what you expect from a defensive line coach, because there’s nothing about playing defense that’s easy. Even when you make a big play, what’s the first thing your coach does when you come to the sideline? He’s yelling at you, he’s not talking to you with a calm voice. I feel like that’s just what it is when you’re playing defense. That’s kind of what I expect out of a defensive coach. If I’m not getting the job done, let me know. But that’s the least of my worries. I’m excited about being there and contributing to the organization.”
On what kind of contact he had with the Lions leading up to the draft
“I spoke to them at the East and West game and that might have been the first time that we had a conversation. The second time was at the combine and that was it. Those were the only two times that we spoke.”
On what his strengths and weaknesses are
“Honestly I don’t think I have a weakness, at all, I mean, there are always things that I can always get better at. Things that I’m good at now I can get better at. Like, my first step is great. Quickness is great. I might have run a 4.82, but if you look at my game speed, I’m making plays that maybe a 4.4 guy might make, or he may not be making. Those are the plays that I’m making. I’m a hustler, making plays down field, getting to where the ball is, that’s where I’m trying to be at. I don’t know, I’m an all around player. I can put my hand down, I can stand up. I’m capable of doing anything that I’m asked to do.”
On whether he has other relatives that are playing in the NFL
“Yes, Thomas Davis of the Panthers, he’s my cousin. We grew up here in Georgia together, right in Randolph.”
On whether he was a high jumper in high school
“Yes sir, I jumped three times. My fourth jump I tied third in the state. I went out to the track field, actually I was headed to the weight room and the track coach, who was actually our running backs coach, asked me to come out and do some events for him and stuff and I ended up winning. The fourth meet I was at state and tied for third. I think my highest was 6-6.”
On how much he weighed at the time
“190, I think it might have been, 195.”
On what weight he played at this year
“This year I played at 248. I’m pretty heavy now, I’m about 252, 251. I went in there and I looked… maybe 10 pounds or so, and I’m capable of doing it. I have the frame to do it. Now I can kind of relax a little bit and not be worried about so much and thinking so much about the draft now that it’s all said and done I’m sure I’ll be able to kind of worry about that and really focus on coming in and having an impact early.”