David Parry traces his football origin to family.
The Indianapolis Colts rookie nose tackle says his father and brother taught him the game at a young age. And they didn’t take it easy on him.
“It was always kind of borderline between playing and fighting,” he said with a mischievous smile. “My dad would tell me after practice or a game how I’ve been playing, how I should improve on it.”
Parry says his mother has also always shown an active interest.
“My mom has been filming games since Little League,” he said. “After games, we’d come back and watch games. I enjoyed sitting down and watching with them.”
The Colts drafted Parry in the fifth round and he’s expected to compete with starter Josh Chapman and backup Montori Hughes for playing time when players report for training camp Aug. 1 at Anderson University.
“I’m not going to back down,” he said, “and I’m going to keep getting to the ball until the whistle.”
Parry, 23, has been described as an overachiever with a high motor. At 6-2 and 300, he’s not as big as the prototypical 3-4 nose tackles, but he’ll undoubtedly add muscle in the weight room.
“I think my height may have hurt me in recruiting or (with) people who wanted to draft me,” he said, “but I think it helps me play. I think it helps me get good leverage, I think it’s harder to move me, and I’ve still got quickness along with strength.”
In a way, Parry is still with family. He’s reunited on the Colts roster with four former Stanford Cardinal teammates, quarterback Andrew Luck, tight end Coby Fleener, wide receiver Griff Whalen and defensive end Henry Anderson. The latter is also a rookie, drafted in the third round.
Parry smiles when asked about Fleener landing a GQ magazine cover. That’s not the Fleener he knew in college.
“I wish I could have gotten the GQ shoot,” Parry said. “I think I look good in a suit.”
It goes without saying Parry is excited to be on a Super Bowl contender with familiar faces.
“This is one of the best teams in the league, a great opportunity, a great franchise,” he said, “and I’m happy to be here with some guys that I already knew, that I already played with in college, so I’m definitely happy to be a Colt.”
He can’t help but chuckle when talking about his path to the NFL. His brother was 10 years older than him, so those games in the yard and continual family “instruction” were eye-opening, to say the least.
Asked about if those experiences toughened him up, he said, “A little bit.”
Phillip B. Wilson can be found on Twitter (@pwilson24), Facebook and Google+.