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Draft Day 3: Conference Calls


On why he thinks he is a good fit in Baltimore:"They are just a tough, hard-nosed team, and I feel that's how I play the game, and I am just really excited to be part of the organization and look forward to getting to practice."

On what position he feels he will play in the NFL:"Wherever they want me to play."

On if he is ready to compete with the current veterans on the Ravens' front seven:"Absolutely. That's what you go into the National Football League for, to compete against the best. I am looking forward to the challenge and looking forward to start practicing."

On if he met with the Ravens at the Combine or had a workout:"I met with them. I talked to them a couple of times, and I feel like each time we had a good connection. And like I said, I am very excited to be a part of this. It's hard to put it into words right now."

On his style as a leader and what he brings to the table as a leader:"I am going to do whatever it takes to do the best I can and to help the team out in any way possible. Whatever that role is, I am going to just embrace it and do everything I can to be the best possible player for the Baltimore Ravens I can be."

On how his recovery from his shoulder injury is going:"My health is 100 percent. I am good to go."


On if he had an inkling Baltimore would pick him:"I was on 12 visits, so I really wasn't sure. I had a lot of options. I really wasn't sure where I was going to end up, but I kind of had a good feeling after leaving Baltimore that [it] would be a good fit for me. I got such a good impression from the coaches, [executive vice president and general manager] Mr. [Ozzie] Newsome, that I was really kind of hoping I would end up there."

On why Baltimore is a good fit for him: "After meeting with [running backs] coach [Wilbert] Montgomery and looking over some tape as a fullback, they did a lot of things that I had done at the Senior Bowl and some stuff I did in college that, I guess, not a lot of people have seen. Some of the things that he told me that he had in store if I were to end up there were really things that fit me well."

On if he feels like he will cross-train as a tight end and fullback: "I would say so, yes. When they spoke with him, they mentioned kind of [using me as] a move fullback and someone that they can use to line up in a lot of different formations."

On how much he values special teams: "Special teams has always been huge for me. All four years in college I was on special teams. Even my junior and senior year when I was getting over 100 snaps a game on offense, I was still involved. I know that will be a big role for me for the rest of my career. I'm looking forward to that."

On how he would rate his blocking: "I'm a confident blocker. Physicality has always been one of my strongest traits. I'm not going to shy away from hitting someone in the mouth. I think I'm a good blocker – a good blocker from the backfield as well."

On how he would describe his skill set to someone who has not seen him play before: "It's kind of a tough, blue-collar, gritty kind of skill set. I like to think I bring physicality to skilled positions at times."

On if he is excited for the opportunity to work with Pro Bowl FB Vonta Leach: "Yes, absolutely. I couldn't ask for a better mentor. I feel like he's been the best fullback in the league for a while now. I'm really looking forward to learning from him and getting to work with him."

On if he feels like he is a different kind of FB that suits more of today's NFL with being able to catch so well: "Yes, I do. I don't think I'm that traditional old-school fullback that's going to run 'isos' all day, but I feel that is something that I can be effective at, but I think there are other ways I can be used."

On if he knows retired Raven Matt Birk at all: "I just met him probably a month ago. We have the same agent [Joe Linta], and we met at a fundraising event in New Haven."

On two Ivy League players being drafted before anyone from the University of Michigan: "It's pretty cool. It's always cool to see the Ivy League get a little respect, and people recognize we play some serious football out there."


On what his emotions are like right now:"I waited a little bit longer than I thought I was [going to] today, but good things come when you wait. I can't ask for a better organization than the Ravens right now. I'm just thrilled for this opportunity."

On if the Ravens gave him any indication on where he is going to be playing: "No, not right now, but I have played right and left tackle at Wisconsin, so either or, or, I'll even move down to guard if that's what they want."

On how much he has played guard: "I haven't, but if that's what they need, I'll definitely step up."

On where and when he expected to be selected in the draft: "I was just talking and hearing some teams and visiting with my agent … I thought I'd go a little bit earlier today. I'm definitely happy with this, and I can't believe I'm a Raven. It's just a great organization, and I can't wait."

On how he would describe his skill set:"I'm a hard worker. Coming from Wisconsin, we take a lot of pride in our run game. We do a lot of power and a lot of zone. We take a lot of pride in our run game. I think I'm a pretty consistent pass protector, as well."

On walking on the football team at Wisconsin instead of taking a Division I basketball offer: "I definitely had a love for basketball early on, but as I went through high school, I thought I'd have a better future in football. I really fell in love with the game. Just being offered a walk-on spot at Wisconsin was a perfect opportunity. I always wanted to go there; that was my dream school. I think I took the opportunity and really rode with it, and great things came out of it."

On how much interaction he had with the Ravens before the draft: "We talked at the Combine and the Senior Bowl a little bit, but other than that, not too much. I talked to [run game coordinator] coach [Juan] Castillo. He's a great guy, and I can't wait to get going for him."

On what similarities he sees between QB Joe Flacco and Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson, who played at Wisconsin: "They are both, obviously, great quarterbacks. Russell Wilson definitely has that secondary threat on foot, but he can also throw the ball, too."

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