Buccaneers Combine Q&A: Pat Sims

He's met with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at the Scouting Combine, but there are questions about Auburn defensive tackle Pat Sims. Why did he quit the Auburn football team briefly and does that action make him a character risk? Can he play in the 3-4 or the 4-3? He took the time to talk to the media on Saturday and answer those questions in this "Bucsblitz.com Combine Q&A."

Are you doing everything at the Combine?

SIMS: I'm not doing the bench press. During the season I broke two bones in my left hand so I'm just going to wait for Pro Day to reach my peak (March 10).

Can you tell us what happened in 2005 when you left the team?

SIMS: I had a family problem, my sister (Vonda) passed away. Pretty much (just a family) problem. I talked to the coaches at the end of the year and they let me come back on the team.

There were reports that you had a disagreement with the coaching staff?

SIMS: I wasn't mentally into it. I went through things with some coaches and dealing with my sister at the same time, and it just wasn't the right place for me at the right time. My sister passed away. She had a heart attack and she was only 32. It was awfully sudden. I think she had some complications from the surgery she had. I can't go into too much detail because I really didn't want to ask my mother about it.

Was it a tough transition coming back?

SIMS: No, once I came back it was me all over again. I was back into it. I missed hitting people, grabbing on people, pretty much my love of football (came out). When I spent time away from football it gave me a chance to think about what I really want to do in life, a lot of time to evaluate myself and see where I was going to become a better player.

Have teams talked to you about playing in the 3-4?

SIMS: I (can) play everything, 3-4, 4-3 ... I played it in college, I played the nose, the 4 technique and the 5 technique (in college). I do it all.

What teams have you met with so far?

SIMS: I've talked to Atlanta, the Seahawks, St. Louis, Carolina, Tampa (Bay).

How much do you miss basketball?

SIMS: I miss basketball. I loved it. That was my first love. I played three years (on state championship team at Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale).

Didn't you play hoops when you took time away from football at Auburn?

SIMS: Yes sir, I played in intramural league after the season. I think the first year we won everything. I played when the season was over. I could play anywhere from the 1 to the 5, you'd be surprised. Don't let the size fool you. I can shoot it, I can handle (the ball), whatever you want me to do.

Crossover (dribble)?

SIMS: Get on the court with me and see.

Are there questions about whether you can stop the run?

SIMS: I'm that kind of guy I do everything. I'm a pass rusher and I'm a penetrator. I do everything in the backfield. I'm a run stuffer. You can watch the film. I'm a run stuffer, pass rusher, pretty much can penetrate, I take up blocks, whatever the defense is for me that's what I do.

Where do you get this confidence from?

SIMS: I've always had it.

You're from Miami. Why didn't you end up at the University of Miami?

SIMS: I had some grade problems in high school. I was going to graduate, but I think Miami thought I wouldn't qualify. Auburn and Rutgers stood by me throughout the entire process, so I signed with Auburn because they were a better fit.

Will you graduate?

SIMS: I'm four classes away from graduating (his major is public administration).

What sets you apart?

SIMS: I'm just a competitor, my skill, my quickness, my strength, I'm just a competitor. I'm trying to beat the person in front of me.

What was a better feeder program for the NFL — your high school or your college?

SIMS: My high school — Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Does it rankle you that you're ranked behind Glenn Dorsey and Sedrick Ellis at your position?

SIMS: I really can't worry about the other guys or who everybody is talking about. I worry about myself and show people what I can do.

Matthew Postins covers the Buccaneers for BucsBlitz.com and the Charlotte Sun-Herald in Port Charlotte, Fla. An award-winning member of the Pro Football Writers Association, he appears frequently on Scot Brantley Show from 3-6 p.m. weekdays on WHBO 1470-AM in Tampa-Clearwater.

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