Q-and-A with Dustin Keller

Q)When did you become aware that the Jets were going to pick you?

Keller: (I heard) right as the trade was going on. I guess they were trying to trade up so they could get me with that pick. I was on the phone with Mr. Tannenbaum and Coach Mangini and they let me know. It was just great news and my family was really excited.

Q)Did any other teams call you during the first round?

Keller: There wasn't anybody talking to me on the phone. I don't know if my agent was talking to anyone. But (the Jets) were the only team I spoke with.

Q)Where did you watch the draft?

Keller: At Purdue University. They gave me a suite in the press box at the stadium. I [was] with all my family and a lot of really close friends.

Q)Did the Jets surprise you by picking you?

Keller: I'm not surprised. I went on a visit to New York and I really liked them. I think they liked me a lot, and I just think it's going to be a really good fit. I had a really good feeling about the Jets.

Q)Did you expect to go in the first round?

Keller: I definitely wouldn't say that I expected to go first round, but I hoped for it. It was kind of a goal that I set for myself about a year ago, just to put in the work and do everything I possibly could to get myself into the first round. It's a dream come true.

Q)What do you think the transition will be like from college to the NFL?

Keller: In college, more than anything, I was used as a receiving tight end. But I know with work and repetition, I can become a much better blocker. I think in time I can become an every-down type of tight end.

Q)How do you feel about the criticisms of your blocking?

Keller: Some people may feel that way and that's fine with me. They're just some of the people I'll have to prove wrong. It's a type of motivator more than anything else to me. When somebody thinks I can't do (something), I just have to prove them wrong.

Q)What did you do over the last year in terms of work to make yourself a first rounder?

Keller: It was just (working on) every aspect of the game, putting in more work in the weight room, trying to work harder while I was on the field, running and (putting time in) the film room. Even when time's up and practice (and meetings) are over, when you go back home, just popping in a DVD and watching a little more film --it's the small things. It's working on all the little things that pro scouts really catch on to.

Q)What were you matchups with Vernon Gholston like?

Keller: There were a few times that I had to block Gholston. It went well for the most part. He got me a couple times, but I got him a few times. I think I fared pretty well as far as blocking is concerned.


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