1. What are the perks of being from Las Vegas?
“You’re exposed to a lot at a young age. You’re just very well cultured. There are a lot of things there from around the world. A lot of wealthy people from around the world come there to live. It’s a very diverse place. The taxes, the weather, the entertainment, the food. Vegas has a lot to offer – more than you think. It’s a great place for older people to retire to.”
2. Did you see a lot of shows?
“I didn’t get into shows a lot but I have seen them as a kid growing up. They’re really cool. When I get older, I want to see more of them.”
3. Do you think an NFL franchise will be successful there?
“I do. Vegas is full of fans. They want to be fans of something. You see with our hockey team, its first year. The fans there were crazy.”
4. What makes playing left tackle so difficult?
“It’s week-to-week the consistency of good rushers and being on top of your game. It’s every play never having a big margin for error. There’s a very small margin for error. It’s a lot like cornerback where if you fall asleep once, you could get burned for six or you could get burned for a sack. You have to be on your toes every play, even if the defensive end decides to take a play off. If he turns it on at the last second, you just never know.”
5. Who is the biggest freak you’ve faced?
“That guy right there [points to Terrell Suggs]. You look at his height, weight and speed and get-off, his rate of moves and technique he uses. It’s the whole nine yards.”
6. How much has Suggs improved your career?
“It helps a ton. Going into games not overthinking who I’m going against. I’m going against him some days, so the rest isn’t so hard.”
7. How’d you become such a big soccer fan?
“It’s a mix between watching it a lot and playing it on Xbox. It’s understanding how complex that game really is and appreciating how difficult it is to play.”
8. Who’s your favorite soccer team?
“Bayern Munich – 100 percent. I do have a buddy on their team, Jerome Boateng. We have the same agency. I’m a big fan of the style of soccer they play.”
9. You seem to be a worldly guy. In what ways do you show that?
“I think it’s important to know what’s going on in the world, to know realities and what’s going on around you in life. I think it’s important to know about other cultures in the world. We’ve grown up in America our whole lives and lived a great life because we’re in a great country. But we could have just as easily been born in a third-world country. But I think it’s important to empathize and learn about other people’s cultures. I think if we learn from each other, it makes you a better person. I try to travel once every year and go somewhere I’ve never been, learn a lot about the culture and the people. I’ve been to Russia and Japan this past offseason. Those were two really cool trips and I learned a lot on both.”
You say ‘what up?’ to Putin? “Not really. I missed my visit to the Kremlin. I actually had a private tour but our driver just left. These Russian Uber drivers don’t wait for anyone. They just leave.”
10. You made national news for adopting your pit bull, Lola. Were you always looking to rescue animals as a kid?
“Now that I look back on it, I was kind of that kid. I wasn’t going to school every day preaching about it or anything, but if ever saw an animal that was hurt, I always tried to help it. I didn’t grow up with a dog. We didn’t get a dog until I was a sophomore in high school. I always wanted a dog.”
How are Lola and Rico doing? “They’re living the life. There’s literally nothing those two can complain about. They’re doing great.”