Joseph still smiling after NFL Draft

Former Sooner lineman Davin Joseph talks about being drafted in the first round by Tampa Bay.

Has there ever been a more likeable player at Oklahoma than Davin Joseph? The big guy always seemed to have a great smile going all the time, and according to OU offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson Joseph is the best offensive lineman that he has ever coached. And considering all the great o-linemen that Wilson has coached, that is saying something.

The minute that Joseph was selected by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the first round of the NFL Draft on Saturday I started calling him. And finally tonight Davin called back apologizing for not getting back to me sooner.

Here is Joseph, a first round draft choice who hasn't been to bed in 24 hours, and he hasn't changed a bit. He is still worried about being rude or thinking that people might think he is rude so he had to apologize for just now getting back to me. You have to love the guy!

That is the kind of guy that Joseph is, and he is so nice that he certainly didn't mind joining for the Two Minute Drill.

JH: Now that you are a first round draft choice of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, how big is the smile right now?

DJ: "It is huge. I am on cloud nine right now. It is a great thing for me and my family right now. I am just enjoying the moment."

JH: Can you describe what it was like sitting there and the ESPN guys not even coming close to predicting that you are going to be picked? And then when you are picked and the NFL nor the ESPN guys can even get your name right?

DJ: I didn't know what to think (laughing). I had no idea. I thought Tampa Bay would go after a defensive player. I never knew that they were looking for an offensive lineman. I guess they decided to add more bulk to their offensive line to get more bodies. They actually drafted first and second round for their offensive line.

"It is a great opportunity for me because I was prepared to wait another two or three hours for my call. Winston Justice had not been picked yet. Eric Winston and Nick Mangold weren't picked and I thought those guys would go before me. I thought I would be somewhere in the mid-second round, so I was ready to wait. Then I got that call from Coach Gruden and it was great."

JH: So you were taken by surprise that Tampa Bay took you in the first round?

DJ: "I had no idea. I thought there would be a chance that I could go to New York at 29 or 35, but you are never really to sure. When you look at how the draft was going for a while, Ferguson was picked at four and now we are at pick 23. So I am thinking there should have at least been another tackle picked by now, and I just thought the draft was shaping up for me to go in the second round."

JH: Your offensive line coach, Kevin Wilson, said that he had talked to Tampa Bay three or four times before the draft and they had requested extra film on you. He said he had a good idea Tampa Bay was going to draft you, but I guess you didn't feel that way?

DJ: "Teams ask for a lot of stuff, but I didn't know personally that they were calling Coach Wilson that much. I guess they were just trying to get as much info as they could and they were trying to decide if I was the guy for them. I figured they were looking at a lot of guys. I am glad that they feel in love with me."

JH: Going into the draft you said that you felt you were going to be the second guard taken in the draft. So how does it feel to be the first guard and second offensive lineman in the draft?

DJ: "I was certainly a blessing. It is a great opportunity to be a first rounder, and that keeps Coach Stoops' tradition of first round picks going. We are now at year No. 5 and hopefully we can get it to six next year. It is a heck of an opportunity to be a first round pick. I worked my ass off to get there. It was a great draft day for me and my family and friends."

JH: What does it say about Oklahoma's offensive line that they have had two first round picks in the last two years, plus a second and a sixth? People are always talking about guys who have quit on the offensive line, but I don't think enough credit is given to the guys who stayed and played so well on the offensive line?

DJ: "It just says we have some guys who really cared. We were successful because we had some guys who really cared about football. I believe that they have another group now similar to when me, Jammal, Vince and Wes were. They have a similar group forming now. Hopefully in a couple more years they will have some more first rounders coming or second round guys so that they will get a chance to play pro football.

"I think it is a great thing, not only just about Oklahoma offensive linemen, but about the prideful program that Oklahoma builds on. It shows the amount of talent and quality guys who are coming out of Oklahoma. You see a lot of guys who are talented, but at Oklahoma it is the quality and character of the guys that we have also. It says a lot about the program."

JH: In your opinion, did the fact you went to Oklahoma help you become a first round draft choice of the Tampa Bay Bucs?

DJ: "Oh yeah. Of course. It is something about those Oklahoma guys. I have been told that by NFL coaches in the league that they feel Oklahoma guys play hard. They feel guys from OU are really good people. It is a reflection of Coach Stoops and a reflection the Oklahoma tradition, and it is a reflection of the people in the community also. I am just glad to be a part of it."

JH: What has Tampa Bay told you thus far and what did they tell you when they first called you?

DJ: "I was kind of in shock for the first two minutes, so I am not sure I remember what they said. Coach Gruden was all pumped up on the phone. He was all pumped up. I don't really remember what he said. And then before you know it, I am driving up to Tampa and going to a press conference. I am back in Hallandale right now just waiting to go back up there for rookie camp on Thursday. So, I got the call and now I am a Buc. It feels great."

JH: Do you know what their plans are for you?

DJ: "They just want me to go in and learn as fast as I can. I am just going to go in and learn one day at a time. Of course, I am going to try to contribute my first year. Hopefully that will be in a starting role at guard, tackle, center or wherever that will be. I am going to try to soak everything in so that I can be full-go come day one of training camp."

JH: What was the first day like for you meeting all the Tampa Bay media? Did you go on a bunch of talk shows and TV shows?

DJ: "It was something new for me. Being an offensive guard, you don't get that kind of attention and this is my first time to get into the door of the NFL. There are some great people in Tampa. The media if fabulous, the coaches are great and it is a special place. I am glad to be a part of it. I am pretty sure that I will be happy there for a long time."

JH: Davin, we have had you on the radio a 100 times and you have done a million interviews at OU, so you have been in the spotlight.

DJ: "I was prepared, but now it is just a little different. I am working with some different guys. I got used to you and some of the local guys from Oklahoma, but now I have some new faces and some new personalities that I am dealing with."

JH: What irony for you in that you came all the way to Oklahoma to go to college and play college football, but you get drafted by Tampa Bay, which is just three hours up the road. Your parents can easily get to every home games can't they?

DJ: "It is a three-and-a-half hour drive. So they can come to all the home games now. It is a great opportunity for them to see me play more often. They are diehard Sooner fans and hopefully they will become diehard Buc fans."

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