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GC EXCLUSIVE - DEMECO RYANS

 
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GridironCentral


Joined: 12 Jan 2006
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Location: Tampa, FL
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 7:34 pm    Post subject: GC EXCLUSIVE - DEMECO RYANS Reply with quote

Here's the transcript of my interview with Alabama LB Demeco Ryans. Sorry it took so long, but I hope everyone enjoys...

www.gridironcentralmag.com

LE: Whatís life been like for you, from the end of last season, up until now?

DR: Itís been pretty hectic. We had the bowl game, and after that I was out in Arizona, training for the Combine and Pro Day. I spent about two months out there. Iíve been a whole traning/diet program. Then, I came back home, and Iíve just been working out here.

LE: It sounds like youíve been having some fun.

DR: Yeah, somewhere in there. Thereís a lot of busy work, but itís been fun, too. Getting to know different people, all kinds of other players from around the country. Youíve seen the names, but now you know who they are.

LE: First things first, congratulations on being named SEC Defensive Player of the Year, and more importantly, adding another Academic All-American honor. How important are honors like that, whether itís on or off the field?

DR: Thank you. Education is the most important thing. My mom always harped on getting good grades in school, all the way from elementary school through college, and up until I graduated. I think it speaks even higher when we see athletes excelling in the classroom, as well as on the field. Most people just see athletes as athletes, but weíre students just like everybody on campus. We have the capabilities in the classroom, not just to play football. We come here to get a degree, not just play football. I think it makes you more credible when you go back home, when youíve performed well in the classroom. People have come up to me and told me what a great role model I am to their kids and their students. Thatís just such a great honor, to have kids look up to you, not just because you play football, but also because of your grades. Hopefully, it will spark them to get it done in the classroom, also.

LE: A lot of people have been talking about how you lack certain measurable skills, and are therefore not an ďeliteĒ prospect. What do you say to people who question your ability?

DR: I donít pay any attention to them. Nobodyís perfect. Everyone has their weaknesses and flaws, and some people think that because of that, some players canít get it done. But itís football. Breaking down prospects isnít an exact science. No one can figure it out. The best player at the combine isnít always the best player in the NFL. For me, this is just an opportunity to go out and show people what I can do, and when people question my ability, it just makes me go out and work that much harder. I just want to show them that I can get it done, no matter how big I am. Itís football.

LE: What LB position do you feel you would fit best at in the NFL, the Sam, Will, or Mike?

DR: I think the Will (Weak-side LB). I think playing the backside, and just being able to run the ball down. Pursuing the ball is what Iím good at, and I take good angles to the ball, so I think that would be the best spot for me.

LE: What NFL teams have you visted/shown interest in you?

DR: I visited the Patriots last week, and Iím going to visit the Lions, Vikings and Redskins.

LE: Is there an NFL team that youíd like to see yourself playing for? Maybe a team you grew up rooting for?

DR: Not really. I really wasnít that much into football growing up. Growing up, I was always a baseball guy, so I never had a favorite NFL team, or anything like that. My friends and I would always just pick a team at the beginning of each season, and it would go back and forth like that, so we never really had one specific team.

LE: You had a great senior season, with capped off an incredible career for you at Alabama. What was it like for you, being the most recognizable player on arguably the best defense in the nation last year?

DR: It was great. It was just unexplainable. Just being the top guy, who kind of led the team. We had a lot of victories this past season, and to have all those guys looking to me as the leader, and me just going out and helping the guys and getting things done. It was great to be looked at as the top guy, but without my teammates help, I wouldnít have been anything last year.

LE: Thereís been some great tradition at Alabama, especially at LB (Derrick Thomas, Cornelius Bennet, etc). What did it mean to you to be a part of that tradition, not only at Alabama, but also as a part of that defense, and at that position?

DR: It really means a lot. To just hear myself being named along with those guys, itís such an honor. Coming here, you always hear about those guys, and theyíre some of the best to ever come through here. To hear people tell me that I remind them or this guy or that guy, itís just a huge honor. I respect those guys, and theyíre some elite players at Alabama. Thereís always been so much pride on this defense, and for me to be able to come here and be a part of this defense, and to be a recognizable figure, itís great, all around.

LE: Are there any NFL players that inspired you, either while you were growing up or even now?

DR: Not really. I like to watch everybody play. Iíve been watching all of the good linebackers since I was in 9th grade, but I donít think thereís any certain player that I ever tried to emulate or anything like that. I just like to watch them all play and pick up things, here and there. Asking questions like, ďHow could he have done that differently, or how would I have approached it? I just try to get better mentally by watching those guys.

LE: What type of NFL defensive scheme do you think would be able to use your talents most effectively?

DR: It really doesnít matter to me. 3-4, 4-3, I think I can handle both well. In the 3-4, I can be an inside guy, and in the 4-3 I can play either side. It really doesnít matter to me.I really think I could fit well in any defensive scheme.

LE: You are an NFL Scout. Break down Demeco Ryans. Give me your strengths and weaknesses, from your perspective.

DR: My strengths are that Iím a solid tackler, and I do well in coverage. I think I need to improve at the point of attack, and strengthen my man coverage skills.

LE: Do you think playing in the SEC has better prepared you for the rigors of the NFL, as opposed to some other conferences?

DR: Most definitely. You have to take every team seriously, every week. Anyone can beat anyone in the SEC, just like in the NFL. Any given day, you can get beat by any team, just like the parity in the NFL.

LE: Name one NFL player that youíre looking forward to squaring up against.

DR: Wow, thereís so many guys. Iím looking forward to facing LaDainian (Tomlinson). I just think heís the top guy. He can bring the shiftiness, he can bring the power game, and he can throw the ball. He can just do it all. I think itís going to be great to face him, because heís the best running back in the NFL, hands down, in my opinion.
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AntonioGates


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great read GIC, and I love that last answer. Maybe he'll have a chance to try and tackle LT everyday at practice.

He seems like a player I would want on my team.
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Element


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

He seems like a good young man, he's definitely got his head in the right place. Personally, I think he'd be a great fit for the Pats.

Kudos on another great interview. Very Happy
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Patsfan01


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think he'll be a great fit for the Pats too. He needs to put on about 10 pounds, but he will be a great LB in this league. Nice interview. One of my favorite players in the draft.
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Tzimisce


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 9:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

More than 10 lbs, I'd say. More like 20 or 25. I'm not sure he has the frame for it.

If he moves inside, he could be another guy like Donnie Edwards, who's undersized but makes a lot of plays, but I personally think the's best suited for the 4-3.
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GridironCentral


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

He's almost 240. I don't think he'd need more than 10 pounds to have enough beef to play inside in the 3-4...
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cew28315039


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 10:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

great interview GC and it is about time Very Happy j/k great job man looking forward to the others
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Patsfan01


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 10:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah Bruschi's at 247. I just looked at an article and Demeco said that he was exactly at 240 now. That was just at his Pro Day. I mean he ran a 4.59 at his Pro Day and is 240 higher then both top ILBs in the draft. Not bad for a guy who is main question marks are speed and size.
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GridironCentral


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 10:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I absolutely agree. He's one of the most underrated players in this draft...
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Vikes need a RB


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Idtake ihm in the second if he fell that far
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cccp


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 11:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yep he's the man and he played for the tide Very Happy
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goblue42


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice Read - I really like his game and the more I check him out the more I like him. The Lions at 40, who need linebacker help, will take a look at him. I think he goes somewhere in the middle of the 2nd round.
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GridironCentral


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If he lasts that long, there will be 1 extremely happy team, and 31 very angry teams...
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