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NFL Scouting Combine

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What they said: Lions at the 2018 NFL Combine


On how his Combine experience is going so far:

"It's been good, been exciting. It's been a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be interviewing with a bunch of teams and training at the NFL Combine so I'm really trying to soak it in. There's some long days and a lot of medical stuff that goes with it, but overall it's been a great experience."

On what he wants to show general managers:

"I want them to know that my ankle is alright. Personality wise, I want them to know I'm an intelligent football player with a high character."

On if offensive linemen are the smartest guys on the team:

"Oh yeah. I can vouch [for that]."

On his position flexibility:

"Me personally, I feel like I can play all five (spots). Obviously in college I played center and guard, but I have the length and the footwork to be able to play tackle so I think that definitely helps me."

On losing his phone while ice fishing:

"I was ice fishing with my little brother over Christmas. I have an app called 'Deeper,' it's a fish finder on your phone. I caught a fish and my phone was on my lap. I stood up and it went down the hole. Brand new iPhone X. I screamed pretty loud. I had insurance but it was a big pain. I'd had it for two weeks."

On how close he was to leaving for the NFL the year prior:

"I was pretty close, I'm not going to lie. But then I sat down with my mom and Coach Bielema and decided that there were a lot of goals I still had left on the table at the University of Arkansas.

"I felt like since I lost my dad four months (prior), it was still a whirlwind for me and everything. I think emotionally it was better for me to have one more year of college. The NFL is a grown man's job and you have to be ready for it. I'm ready to go."

On his dad's passing:

"Toughest moment of my life. I think it pushed me. I've really had to lean on football and lean on my teammates and things like that. I think I'm just trying to make him proud. Every day I think of how can I make my dad proud."

View photos of Detroit Lions players at the NFL Combine.


On what sets him apart from the other running backs at the Combine:

"Just versatility, being able to do multiple things, I think that's the thing that comes to my mind immediately."

On the most challenging part of Combine interviews:

"The most challenging part, besides just the quantity, you do so many of them, staying engaged, but everybody wants to know or every coach wants to know, 'What's been your biggest setback of your career or of your life?' Some people want to know football-wise, some people want to know life-wise. Just admitting a setback ... a lot of people are like, 'It's the Combine. I want to be perfect.' But that's not the case. But probably admitting that and how you got over it ... that's the hardest thing."

On a lot of teams going with a two-back approach now:

"That's what you have to do. One guy carrying the football is like 95 percent dead now. It's just too demanding and the guys who do it break down eventually so two-back is where you have to go. Coaches realize that, players are starting to realize that. Don't get me wrong, you want to get your work, everybody wants to be the lead dog, but you're going to need help eventually."

On who he models his running style after:

"I think everybody's running style is their own. Obviously I try to take things from other running backs who have been great or are great now. But every running back is different, even with the comparisons of me to Le'Veon Bell. He's a completely different back than I am. I'm completely different than him. It's just how it is. You can't be the exact same copy of anybody."

On who he looks up to:

"Oh, my dad, for sure. I've answered this question a lot this week. This is a good question they ask. My dad, he had a lot of jobs when I was younger and he finally found his niche. He loves doing basketball training. He goes to work endless hours, endless days a week to provide for us. And he's fought for everything he has now. He's managed to raise kids at the same time, we're all doing well. He's managed to stay with one woman. Nowadays that's rare. It really is, as sad as it sounds. So to look up to that as a positive role model is tremendous."


On representing ULL at the Combine:

"It's definitely a great opportunity, and a blessing for me to reach this opportunity. I'm excited to showcase my talents and show what I have."

On what sets him apart from other safeties at the Combine:

"Definitely me coming from a smaller school, I have to show a lot more. I don't come from a Florida State or Texas A&M, so I'm here for a reason and I'm going to use the time here to showcase my talents. I feel like I'm just as good as any other safety, so I just got to prove it now."

On when he knew making it to the NFL was attainable:

"By the end of my junior year, I saw I was very close to reaching my potential, reaching my goals to come to the NFL Combine. Coming in at the beginning of my senior year, I had a lot of agents reaching out to me basically just telling me how good I was. So, it kind of gave me an idea of where I stood. I never pictured myself being inside the NFL Combine until the end of my senior year when I got the invite."


On the feedback he's getting from teams:

"It's great feedback. It's weird because they've got film and everything and they know everything about you. So, you just gotta be honest and take everything on the chin."

On how he would assess his career at Alabama:

"I feel I did a great job. I was a team player. I was playing an end position. Coming in here I wanted to be a 3-tech so I just wanted to show I'm versatile and everything so I just did what I had to do for the team."

On if he prides himself on being a part of Alabama's history of tough defensive lines:

"Yes. You just want to keep the tradition going. You don't want to be that one year where they're like, 'man, what happened?' You know what I'm saying? So it's definitely a brotherhood and it's a little dynasty within a dynasty. We want to keep the d-line, you know kinda want to keep some dogs there."


On how his Senior Bowl experience helped him prepare:

"It helped a lot, taught me what to expect and just get comfortable with everything happening here."

On if teams have indicated what position he'd play at the NFL level:

"Every team I've talked to has asked me if I've played right tackle, and I told them freshman sophomore year I was right tackle, junior senior year I was left. (The difference is) everything's just like a mirrored version of it really. People think it's just pretty easy to switch over but you learn all the same footwork but different feet."

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