Ed Thompson: You have a fascinating background, even dating back to being born in Saudi Arabia. Tell us more about that...
Jordan Kent: My father was over there coaching [basketball] one of the national teams for Saudi Arabia. He was over there with my mom for about seven years, and they just decided that was a good place to have kids. So me, my younger sister and older brother were all born there. I lived there until I was about 2, then we moved back to the States. So I really don't remember it that well. But it's still pretty unique to say you were born all the way over there. I'd love to go visit there someday.
ET: What was it like playing basketball at Oregon since your dad was the head basketball coach?
JK: I played at Oregon for the last four years and I had a really good time there. Even though he was my dad, we had a really professional relationship on the court. And off the court it was father and son. I really enjoyed it because it's rare for someone to get the chance to play for your dad, especially at such a high level of competition like you have in the Pac-10, a big-time Division-I school. So it was a lot of fun.
ET: You had foot surgery after an injury that occurred in your final collegiate game. Tell us about how that happened and how you're doing today.
JK: The injury occurred with about 30 seconds left in my season. It was the second-to-last play in our bowl game, we were down by 30, you could say it was garbage time. I caught a ball across the middle and started going upfield and I went down and someone fell on the back of my heel and my toe was planted--so I hyperextended my big toe and tore the soft tissue. I had an MRI and on Christmas Eve I got the word that I needed surgery. So it was a pretty difficult Christmas and New Year's kind of dealing with the fact that you had this injury and were going to be out four to six months when you're on the cusp of something you've been working your tail off for the last couple of years. But I knew that things like this happen for a reason, and if I could change it, I wouldn't go back and change it at all because I'm really happy to be up here in Seattle. The toe feels great, my foot feels great right now. We're just going to take things real nice and slow to make sure that I'm ready for training camp. Obviously, there's no need to rush anything right now because if we do, it's just going to end up being a lingering problem. So we're being patient, taking care of the problem and nipping it in the bud.
|Jordan Kent with his father and basketball coach, Ernie Kent (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)|
JK: I think I ran a 4.4-flat--and that was electronic--before my
senior season in football. So I was really looking forward to getting down in
the 4.3s with the training in the offseason. But obviously, I didn't get a
chance to do that with the toe injury. But it's like I tell people, it's one
thing to run a forty lined up and you can time your start and everything like
that, but obviously it's another thing when you've got the pads on. So I just
told everybody to look at the game film because I feel like I played really fast
this past year.
ET: During your pre-draft experience, who were some of the teams that were showing interest in you?
JK: I had a formal meeting with the Raiders at the Combine, and then I worked out in front of Seattle and St. Louis. I got a lot of calls from and took a visit to Atlanta. You know, it really is a crapshoot, especially if you're one of those sixth- or seventh-round picks and teams are looking for the best athlete available sometimes. I was just happy to even be mentioned as a possibility to be drafted despite this injury, and I was really happy to end up in Seattle. It's a great franchise, it's close to home, they've had a lot of success in the last couple of years and I really like how they stress character here.
ET: You're a guy who sets goals and priorities, so what are your early aspirations as you're sizing things up as a rookie in Seattle?
JK: Right now, it's just making the squad one way or another whether it's the practice squad or the 53-man roster--just making this team in some shape or form. You know, it's small steps at a time. Once you've done that, then you want to get into a role where you're contributing on a regular basis. After that, you want to become a starter. After that, you want to be a Pro Bowler. But I really like to focus on the present and short-term goal as opposed to looking too far ahead into the future because then you tend to lose focus on the present.
ET: Who are a couple of the guys you've already felt an early connection with out there in Seattle, Jordan?
JK: A lot of the rookies, actually, because we're all staying at a hotel right now. Courtney Taylor--the other receiver from Auburn who was picked a couple of picks before me--we're roommates and we're getting along great. Logan Payne is a free agent wide receiver from Minnesota, Joe Fernandez, all those guys are great and we've been getting along real well. And then the receivers here are Seattle are just good character guys who help us learn rather than pull us down. So it's a really good situation.
Check back on Monday for a Scout Radio feature with Jordan Kent to learn more about this very talented NFL rookie!
|A member of the Professional Football Writers of America, Ed Thompson's NFL and college football player interviews and features have been published across the Scout.com network and syndicated through FoxSports.com's NFL team pages.|