FAN SPEAK with Aaron Wagner

TotalBlueSports.com kicks off the first 2005 edition of "Fan Speak" where TBS subscribers do it all, from picking who to interview to providing the interview questions. For the year's first edition of Fan Speak, you, the fans, asked to hear from outside linebacker Aaron Wagner.

Starting off with the first question is Parley Smith of Provo, Utah who asked:

"Aaron, what do you see as your best competitive attributes; what will fans notice when we see you playing during the games?"

Aaron Wagner chuckled and replied: "Oh wow, that's a good one. I guess that's a bragging question. I say probably just my competitive attributes is the fact that I hate to lose and I hate to screw up. I think I have pretty superior instincts so I guess out there you're going to see some of those instincts shine through and make some big plays this year."

Seth Jones of Provo, Utah asked:

"Aaron, I realize you are a defensive player, but do you see a difference in intensity on the offensive side of the ball this year?"

Wagner replied: "Definitely! That's blatantly, clearly obvious. Those guys out there, you can tell they want it more. Just the little things are what I've noticed like the down field blocking from the receivers. Those kinds of things are where you can definitely tell intensity level has picked up in the offense."

Tyler Tippetts from Las Vegas, Nevada asked three questions:

1) "How is the confidence of this year's team?"

Wagner replied: "The confidence is great so far. I mean, confidence extends from, one, you're performance in making plays, and, two, your teammates and, three, your coaches. Right now we've got all three. It's a good opportunity to build that confidence because this is a brand new unit with new a new coaching staff and new players, so I think it‘s there and it‘s going to keep on climbing."

2) "What specifically has Coach Mendenhall done to bring the Team together this year?"

Wagner: "Aw, specifically if you were here in the off-season works you would have seen all the specific things like all the crazy marathons, and runs up the mountain and fun Fridays and those kinds of things. Those are just team building experiences and those are personal building experiences. He's bringing us all together and he's holding us all at the same level of accountability. I think that's what's bringing us all together and has really meshed this offense and defense together. We all accountable to the same level and same standard."

3) "Are the players as a whole buying into Bronco's system?"

Wagner: "Definitely. I mean, you have to or not going to be a part of this system. There's no picking and choosing. Like I said, you don't make that standard you better think about playing somewhere else or playing a different sport."

Nathan Mills from Peoria, AZ asked three questions of Wagner:

1) "What do you see as the strength of this year's LB corps?"

Wagner replied: "I think one, we have a good returning leader in the middle in Cameron [Jensen]. I think we're athletic and we know our stuff out there, so we're just going to go out and be solid out there, and I don't think people are going to worry about us missing those tackles. We‘ve got guys out there at linebacker that are going to make some plays."

2) "What is the area you, as a group, may struggle the most with?"

Wagner laughed and said: "As a group, I would say fatigue and that's probably about it."

3) "How crazy did it drive you to sit and watch all of last season?"

Wagner: "Oh that's the worst experience. It was a good year for me to build and get better but to not play and sit on the sideline and know that I could contribute was really, really tough on me. But you know what they say, ‘What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger."

Lee Tanner from Delta, Utah asked a two-part question:

1) "What do you expect from the fans at home games?"

Wagner responded: "What do I expect from the fans? Whooaa, I expect some support. I expect them to be out there cheering and getting rowdy like us linebackers. We're going to be out there playing good football, and so we need a lot of fans out there supporting us like good fans should. If you want a good football team, be a good fan."

2) "Do you think that fans should never boo your play when it is lacking intensity and some are not playing smart?"

Wagner: "I would say not because that's not going to bring our confidence level up with anybody on the field, and it‘s not going to inspire us to do any better when we hear that. Just keep cheering for us and don't worry, the coaches will take care of that stuff."

Mark Pedersen from Atlanta, Georgia asked:

"Aaron, what is your Beep Test score relative to all other Linebackers and what is the one QB this year that you would love to hammer into the turf?"

Wagner replied: "Oh wow. Well, my beep score, relative to the other linebackers, is right in the middle of the pack. I'm the biggest and the heaviest linebacker so if I can stay right there in the top, I'm doing pretty good. That's probably my worst test but I'm still right there in the middle.

"As far as quarterbacks, whooa. Who are we playing this year, let's see. Well, I would say Utah's quarterback. Yeah, let's go get him who ever he is. I'll be hitting them all so it's all good."

Nathan Mills from Peoria, AZ asks:

"Aaron, among the LB corps what descriptive words come to mind regarding: Cameron Jenson?"

Wagner: "Cameron Jenson is a consistent and solid player."

"Gary Lovely?"

Wagner: "Gary Lovely works hard."

"Justin Luettegrodt?"

Wagner: "Crazy."

"Markell Staffieri?"

Wagner: "Smart."

"Richard Nehring?"

Wagner: "Intense."

"Paul Walkenhorst?"

Wagner: "Experienced."

"Dan Bates?"

Wagner: "Strong."

"Justin Williams?"

Wagner: "Justin plays D-end but he's a hard worker too."

"And finally yourself?"

"Ferocious!" Wagner responded with a grin.


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