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Transcripts: Marlon Humphrey Introductory Press Conference

Dean Pees opening statement:
"It's a happy day today. I am very excited. I want to give you a quick little story about this guy that he has no clue about. A couple of years ago when he was a freshman, I got invited by coach [Nick] Saban to speak at the Alabama clinic. As most of you know, I was coach Saban's defensive coordinator for four years, so I know a little bit about their defense. During the practice, after we got done with the clinic, we went out to the practice, and we were standing on the sidelines, and coach Saban came over and talked to me for a little bit. I know these guys [the Alabama players] were very happy, because he was not standing back in the secondary with them, so they were probably happy about it. (laughter) He was telling me about this young guy that was there that was going to be a phenomenal player. Who knew a couple years later that I would be sitting here right beside him, and I'm going to be his coach. It is funny how the Lord works and how things happen and work out. But, I remembered that last night when we chose him, and I was hoping that we would. I thought back to that [time] a couple years ago. But, I just want to tell you that the thing about this guy that I am most excited about … Somebody asked me today what I liked the most about Marlon. Here is the thing about him: When you pick a guy in the first round, how about a guy that has family that has played in the league that might know a little about what it takes to be here? How many of us have that? No. 2, how many guys have played in what I would call a 'College Super Bowl' two years in a row? Who has played on the No. 1 defense in NCAA football? Who is six-foot tall, 197 pounds and runs a 4.40 [40-yard dash]? What isn't there to like about this guy? He is the most physical corner – maybe the most physical defensive back – in this whole draft. And this was a strong draft for defensive backs. You guys all know … You guys in the press have been around me long enough to know that we like to pressure. We like to play man coverage. We like to get up in your face. There have been some times last year, like when we were ranked No. 1 in the league after 12 games, and those last four games we were not able to do that. Well, that is why this guy is sitting right here beside me. We have a guy that can do that. On the line of scrimmage, this guy is just absolutely phenomenal. I could not be more excited. I know I am taking a little of your time, Chris [Hewitt]. *(laughter) *But, I am telling you, I am so excited that we are going to be able to do some things that we have been wanting to do and we have done for a while, but we can never do them for a whole season. We have looked out there a lot of times, and we have seen six or seven different corners starting for us over the course of a season, and now we have some stability back there. This guy has given it to us. I can't be more excited to have him here."

Chris Hewitt opening statement:
"I am going to echo every sentiment that Dean said. I think what we picked up in Marlon is a guy that is tough, he is competitive, he is fast and he is explosive. Dean already talked about it – this guy has played in two National Championships and comes from a great program – a program that does every coverage that we do. I think that he will fit in right into our DB room. He is going to add some depth and possibly become a starter. I know that he is going to come in here with those aspirations to become a starter and become a Pro Bowler on our defense. I am extremely happy to have a guy like this that is going to be able to come in here and handle all our coverages and play in the AFC North and help us win championships. Again, Marlon Humphrey [is a] great player and one of the best players in this draft. I am extremely happy to have him."

Marlon Humphrey opening statement:
"I am happy to be here. Last night was a crazy night. I got that call, and Ozzie Newsome did not really say who it was, so I kind of didn't know who it was at first. Once I figured out who it was and what team it was, I was very excited to be a Raven."

*Dean, where do you look at him? Outside? *(Stan White)
"Yes, primarily as an outside corner. This guy has played outside most of the time and has been a good bump-and-run type of guy, getting up in your face and being physical. The other thing that it does is there are a lot of times in this league that you really don't play a lot of corner support. You put it more on the safeties. That could change a little bit, because this guy can hit you and tackle you."

Marlon, you have a father who has also been a No. 1 pick and has played in the league. How much advice have you gotten from him so far, and how much do you want to share with him sitting right there? *(Gerry Sandusky)
(HUMPHREY)* "I guess when you have a dad that played in the NFL, it kind of seemed like … He did not really give me that much advice throughout this process, but he has kind of given me advice my whole life. The things he seemed to tell me during this process I kind of already knew. I can remember all the way back when I was 10 years old, he was just telling me stories that he has had in the past – things he has done wrong and things that he has done right. Growing up, he kind of gave me advice my whole life, kind of for this moment. Having a dad like that that is always there and has been there, done that – I think it has definitely been a tremendous help for me."

Did you feel any more pressure going the same school and knowing what your father did there? Did you ever feel any pressure because you were following what he did there? *(Jamison Hensley)
(HUMPHREY) *"I will not say I felt pressure, but I will say it definitely was kind of … When your dad is Bobby Humphrey, you say your name and [people say], 'Bobby Humphrey's son?' That is a big thing. But, I embrace pressure. My whole family is pretty athletic, and I have always wanted to surpass my dad – a great Alabama running back, NFL running back. My mom is a track star; my brother is a football star. Everybody in my family … It kind of seemed like a family competition. I would not really say it was pressure, it was just more family fun."

(HEWITT) "He plays in the secondary; there is always pressure." * (laughter)*

You join a franchise that has had Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, Terrell Suggs, C.J. Mosley, now. Do you think about that at all as you wear purple and join this organization – who they are and what they have been? *(Mark Viviano)
(HUMPHREY)* "That is what I thought about last night when I got picked by the Ravens. Those guys you just named, they are just known. When I think of the Ravens, those are the guys I think about – those tough-nosed guys. It is definitely a blessing to be asked to be a part of that – a part of that legacy and a part of this team."

*Marlon, I talked to [Hoover high school] coach [Josh] Niblett earlier in the day, and he talked about the fact that he never felt like you played football because you had to or because it was your family legacy. He always felt that it was something that you chose. Can you kind of speak to it from your perspective and what it was like to enter that sport when you are in Alabama and when you have that name? What drew you to the game? *(Childs Walker)
"I think what drew me to the game the most was my mom and dad not letting me play until sixth grade. (laughter) I do not know where they came up with this rule, but they would not let me play until I was in sixth grade. I was in fourth grade like, 'Can I play?' [They said], 'No.' Fifth grade, 'Can I play?' [They said], 'No.' Then, sixth grade comes around. That kind of started it, and when I play football, I just feel special. When the game starts, it feels like something special to me. That is why I have always been so attracted to the game. I think football is something that you have to be pretty passionate about to be good at, or else you are just there. I love the game, and that is one of the things that attract me to it."

Marlon, the ties between the Ravens and Alabama are well-documented. Ozzie Newsome is here, and they have taken more Alabama players than any other school. Is that a source of comfort for you knowing that history? *(Jeff Zrebiec)
(HUMPHREY) *"I think it is a source of comfort. Ozzie Newsome and also C.J. Mosley … I know he is a really great player. A lot of Alabama players that I have asked, older guys that I ask, 'Who is the best player you have seen?' A lot of them say C.J. Mosley. They would just say the way he practiced and the way he carried himself. I think having 'Bama guys around and having guys that were former great players and players now is definitely kind of some comfort."

**Marlon, a lot of NFL coaches talk about Nick Saban's influence on the Alabama defensive players in the NFL and how quickly they have acclimated to the NFL game. Have you thought a little bit about that? What does he do in working with you guys to make that transition easier? *(Keith Mills)
(HUMPHREY) *"Well, I guess I have not really made the transition yet. I hear it is pretty much like an NFL program at Alabama. Coach Saban, he is a strict guy. There is no leniency. It is kind of like the process. I have not made the [transition] yet, but I guess that I will see how good he did pretty soon."

*Can you give us some advice that your mother has gave you? (Peter O'Neal)
(HUMPHREY) *"The biggest thing my mom ever told me was, 'Hard work pays off.' When I was a kid, that is all she used to tell me. Lose a race, you just have to work a little bit harder. Because in the end, it always pays off."

**Marlon, where did you get your physicality from? A lot of people have talked about that. *(Ryan Mink)
(HUMPHREY) *"When I was younger, I wanted to play running back. But, my dad always told me to play defense because instead of getting hit, you can hit somebody. I was a linebacker, and I wanted to be Brian Urlacher. That is the guy who I wanted to be when I was in the sixth grade. I guess that is kind of where a little bit of it came from – not being a running back. Maybe, that is where some of it came from."

Brian Urlacher instead of Ray Lewis? *(Ryan Mink)
(HUMPHREY) "Maybe it was Ray Lewis. I cannot really remember. It was a while ago." *(laughter)

*Because of your father and knowing about him, were there any feelings of maybe trying to be a running back? Or was it that advice that shifted you not to be? *(Jamison Hensley)
"I played running back in sixth, seventh grade. But after a while of [people saying], 'Are you sure you want to play running back?' you keep hearing that and eventually, I was like, 'All right I will go on defense.' And it just sounds a little better: Do I want to get hit, or do I want to hit somebody? It sounds a lot better the other way."

**Marlon, did you seriously think at one point you might be an Olympic track athlete rather than a football player? *(Childs Walker)
(HUMPHREY) *"I never wanted to be just straight track. I wanted to maybe kind of … I forgot his name [Marquise Goodwin], he plays for the Bills. [I wanted to] kind of play football, but then also do track. But, there was never really a time when I wanted to be a track star. I did not ever want to do that; I always wanted to be in the NFL."

*Chris, there has been some time here over the past couple of years where you guys have kind of had to sign cornerbacks off of other teams' practice squads or move guys from safety and put them in coverage. What is the comfort level like looking at your depth chart now at cornerback and seeing the top four and also some of the young guys behind them? *(Jeff Zrebiec)
"It is a sigh of relief, obviously, when you have the quality depth that we have now in our room. There is not going to be a drop-off if any one of those guys gets hurt. We can line any of those guys up. I feel very confident about the guys we have in our room right now – that they can line up and do the job and do it at a high level. Adding a guy like Marlon, that makes it all the better."

*Marlon, you talked about your mom and dad, but how did your siblings play into your development as an athlete? Did you look up to your older brother and sister to some degree? What was the dynamic there? *(Childs Walker)
"I wanted to be like my big brother. I remember when he went off to Arkansas on a scholarship, I thought to myself, 'I think I can get a scholarship and play football at a university.' So, kind off my whole family just …. Family time seemed like it was spent around a track or basketball, because you always support your siblings. If you go watch them play, that was always kind of my childhood – at a track or field or any of that. Just being around that the way I grew up."

**A couple years ago, there were some issues here in Baltimore. The Ravens are well-known for Habitat for Humanity and working in the community. Are there any thoughts on what you want to do here about helping the community, being a role model and getting out there to show that you have parents who taught you the right stuff? Any thoughts on how you will do that with the Ravens? *(Peter O'Neal)
(HUMPHREY) *"I plan on doing [that]. I guess first figuring out more about the city, what is around here. Whatever is set up for me or I can figure out more information on, I would love to help. I would love to be around, show my face and see some kids smile."

**Marlon, you said when you were younger, you set some goals and one was to run a 4.39 [40-yard dash]. Were there some other goals that you can share with us that you have set for yourself? *(Kevin Richardson)
(HUMPHREY) *"Like you said, when I was, I think, a freshman in high school, I wrote those goals. I wanted to play in the NFL. I wanted to play in a Pro Bowl. I wanted to play in a Super Bowl, and I wanted to be a first-round draft pick, and that came true. I guess, so far, all of my goals – besides that 4.39; I ran a 4.41 – most of them have come true. I am hoping that this Super Bowl and this Pro Bowl can come true, too."

*Dean, just how much does it free you up to be aggressive on the front end? Not only the addition of Marlon, but just what you guys did adding Tony Jefferson and the makeover you have had on the back end of the defense. *(Ryan Mink)
"It makes a big difference. You guys know I am going to tell you what I think. First thing I think of is the Pittsburgh two-minute drive [in Week 16 last year]. We started out with that drive in four out of the first five plays, we pressured and nothing happened. We could not cover them. That is enough said of how much comfort I have. I want to pressure, and I want to pressure a lot. That is not only based on the guys up front, but it is probably more things that we do … My background is more in the secondary than it is anywhere else, and I usually … I know you kind of build the team from the front up in a way, but in this league that is a passing league, you better be pretty good in the daggone back end to be able to do the things that you want to do up front. I can only send so many if we can cover so many. I just can't tell you how excited I am to have this daggone guy. The guys that we have acquired in the offseason in the secondary … Somebody mentioned how we have been going through defensive backs and signing them off practice squads. I can remember a game I couldn't remember … A guy was actually playing for me, and I could not remember his first name off the top of my head, because we just signed him three days ago. That ain't fun.* (laughter) *To have this guy and to have the guys that we got, I am excited. And to answer another question that you have back there about Alabama and about coach Saban and about how they have kind of groomed these guys, there is probably no team in the NCAA in college football that plays as many coverages and as many things that these guys do. These guys play an NFL secondary back there; they do a lot of things. There are a lot of teams that make it as simple as they can possibly make it, and that is not coach Saban, and that is not Alabama. What that does is that carries over into this league, because we are not simple by any means. To me, that is the greatest thing to what the Alabama players bring to this league."

*In talking with former teammates that are now in the NFL, what is the biggest thing they tell you that you have to learn to be successful in this league? *(Gerry Sandusky)
The biggest thing they have kind of told me is that success does not always come right away. It might take some time, but the main thing is to just stay persistent. I talked to [New England Patriots CB] Cyrus [Jones]; I know he had a rough [rookie] year. He just said, 'Stay persistent. Just keep working, and the time will come where it just starts clicking for you.'"

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