SCS: Do you feel more comfortable this year with everything they're asking you to do?
DR: Yeah, mentally I feel a lot more stable. The playbook was pretty tough on me last year. But now I've got a year under my belt watching Clark (Haggans), Joey (Porter) and James (Harrison). I feel my more confident now when I go out there.
SCS: Is it beneficial for a guy like yourself to spend a season on the practice squad?
DR: Definitely, especially coming from a defensive end to a linebacker position. The talent level took me a while to get adjusted to as well. I think it worked well. I'd have liked to have been playing, but in this scenario, the practice team was good for me.
SCS: But your expectations are even higher this year, are they not?
DR: Yeah. Definitely. I want to go out and show that I'm accountable and cut down on my mistakes. I feel like I'm stronger and I think I'm faster. I've set the bar pretty high for myself.
SCS: How'd you play in the first game?
DR: I wasn't real happy with it, but I'm going to learn from it. I've got to get the kinks out. I haven't really been that competitive in a year, so I felt a little rusty. I think that had a lot to do with it.
SCS: Is that the tough part about spending a season on the practice squad? You haven't really hit anybody live in a year, while the guys who are coming up as rookies played college ball.
DR: Yeah. That's a bit of a disadvantage for me but I'm working through that.
Five Questions with... Dedrick Roper
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