DE, Virginia Tech
Numbers: 6'2, 259 pounds
2006 Stats: 42 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 6.5 TFL, 12 QB pressures, 1 FF, 2 FR (one for a touchdown) in 10 games.
Career Stats: 135 tackles, 9.5 sacks, 17.5 TFL, 50 QB pressures, 5 FF, 4 FR (one for a touchdown) in 48 games and 26 starts.
The Buzz: Created some excitement at the Combine when he decided at the last moment to do the bench press, even though he just had surgery for a broken arm on January 2nd. He had only benched twice since being medically cleared to start lifting again. The fact that he benched at all made a huge impression on a number of NFL coaches who watched as other players meekly opted out of the bench press for fairly questionable reasons like hamstring or groin problems ... Has a reputation for toughness, not allowing injuries to hold him back from playing ... Sheds blocks well and has good straight-line speed ... Plays with good field intelligence, locating the flow and the ball quickly.
Noteworthy: Earned Super Iron Hokie honors in 2005 for his
weight room performance that included a 560-pound back squat ... Started every
game at right defensive end even though he had broken his arm in spring practice
... In high school, he played was the team's punter in addition to playing
defensive end and tight end ... Had formal interviews at the Combine with at
least 7 teams ... has the size and quickness that has caused some 3-4 teams to
ask him if he's be interested in playing LB as a rush-end ... Ironically, he had
planned to do a full workout except the bench press. But he went ahead with that
and pulled a quad during the 40-yard dash, so he wasn't able to complete it.
He said it to Scout.com...
"I know I'm getting double-teamed. So I had to be tougher than the two across from me. If I can get my hands on at least one of them first and take one on, I know the other one's eventually going to leave me alone -- and I'd just pound them. Coach teaches us to keep pounding every play and eventually they'll give up -- and I feel like a lot of people gave up after they just got pounded."
"I feel like you have to get along as a teammate. You're going to have people from all over and you have to have one guy in the locker room that's able to relate to everybody - not just the people in the locker room, but also the coaches because if not, you'll have no sense of team camaraderie and team spirit. A lot of players can bring other players down if he and the coach aren't getting along, so that's why I get along with everybody, to keep the team together."
A member of the Professional Football Writers of America, Ed Thompson's NFL and college football player interviews have been published across the Scout.com network and syndicated through FoxSports.com's NFL team pages.