New Era Scouting http://www.newerascouting.com NFL draft scouting reports, mock drafts, interviews and analysis Sat, 06 Aug 2016 15:26:04 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.4.10 2016 Draft Interview: Lafayette Pitts, CB, Pittsburgh http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/23/2016-draft-interview-lafayette-pitts-cb-pittsburgh/ Sat, 23 Jan 2016 14:43:50 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5586 Scott Porter sits down with 4 year starter Lafayette Pitts of Pittsburgh to discuss the upcoming draft and his time at Pittsburgh.

 

Scott Porter: What kind of person is an NFL team getting in Lafayette Pitts?

 

Lafayette Pitts: They are getting a passionate hard worker. I am blue collar to the bone. Once you get to know me I open up and you will see that I am a great person. I am open minded and always upbeat. I feel that others feed off the positive energy that I have in the locker room and on the field. I am a competitor and open to any challenge. I will work as hard as I have to in order to make a 53 man roster. They are going to get everything I’ve got to offer.

 

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest strengths?

 

Lafayette Pitts: My speed and range. I have the ability to cover man to man. I feel that I can play all of the Defensive Back positions which includes; the Cornerback spot, covering the slot as well as Safety. My tackling ability is also one of my biggest strengths.

 

Scott Porter: Why should an NFL team give Lafayette Pitts an opportunity?

 

Lafayette Pitts: I am very passionate about this game. Football is what I live and die for. I have been playing this game since I was 5 years old. I have spent 18 years working hard to get a shot at making a 53 man roster. It will be a blessing to be given the opportunity.

 

Scott Porter: What did you like most about playing college football?

 

Lafayette Pitts: I love the atmosphere that comes with playing the game at the college level. You’re working and playing alongside a bunch of guys who are passionate and trying to live out a lifelong dream. You make great friends and become very competitive. I went through a lot of head coaches while at Pittsburgh and my teammates and myself remained passionate and willing to learn as each coach came along.

 

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest football accomplishments?

 

Lafayette Pitts: First off being a 4 year starter at a successful D1 program. Another accomplishment was becoming a team captain this past year. That meant a lot to me. Guys looked up to me being the leader of the team. I embraced that role as much as possible.

 

Scott Porter: You played with Tyler Boyd who will be selected early in this season draft as well as James Conner who is a well-established Running Back. How has playing with those types of players helped your growth as a player?

 

Lafayette Pitts: Tyler Boyd’s name speaks for himself around the nation. Tyler is a great person and a great football player. He is one of the first guys on the practice field and one of the last guys off. He works extremely hard. This off-season I was working out with Tyler a lot on one on one drills to get my footwork down and prepare myself. It is a luxury to be able to go up against an NFL Wide Receiver in Tyler Boyd every week to prepare myself for the top Wide Receivers in the NFL. I am a much better player practicing and working with Tyler. I figure if you can cover Tyler you can cover anyone. He is a tremendous Wide Receiver. He is such a great route runner. Tyler is very passionate about the game. James Conner is a hard worker. He has stayed so positive after what he went through with his injury and is going through right now with his cancer treatment. He is still the leader of the team. He has a lot of positive energy.

 

Scott Porter: Can you describe your overall experience at Pittsburgh?

 

Lafayette Pitts: It was a great experience. It was really humbling to be from Pittsburgh and be able to play for your hometown. I walked onto campus as an 18 year old kid and grew as a person. The city was big, campus was big. The opportunity was out there for me to do something. It was an honor to play for a historic program and great tradition at Pittsburgh. A lot of hall of famers from the NFL came from Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh loves their football and it means a lot to them and it meant a lot to be able to be part of the program where I started for 4 seasons. The fans of Pittsburgh love their Pitt Panthers and they stay behind you the entire way.

 

Scott Porter: What are your hobbies off the field?

 

Lafayette Pitts: My hobbies off the field are just relaxing and watching TV and movies. When I have free time away from football I try to stay off my feet and relax. I watch a lot of TV shows. I keep up with over 20 different TV shows.

 

Follow Scott Porter of NewEraScouting on Twitter @BlitzingDog3

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2016 Draft Interview: Assumption, RB, James Ward, JR http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/23/2016-draft-interview-assumption-rb-james-ward-jr/ Sat, 23 Jan 2016 05:36:29 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5583 See below as Rob Batt takes the time to talk to James Ward of Assumption College about his upcoming training and his collegiate career at Assumption College. James Ward finished the 2015 season with 1,001 rushing yards.

 

Rob Batt: James, tell us about yourself?

James Ward: I am from New Haven, CT. I started playing football at age 6 and then youth football with the New Haven Steelers and Wilbur High School. I played college football for Assumption College.

 

Rob Batt: What was your favorite thing about attending Assumption?

James Ward: Football. Football helped me on and off the field. It helped shape me after going through coaching changes. I had 5 position coaches there but RB Coach Mike Vulcano really helped me by being honest while always being in my corner which helped me really develop my character on and off the field.  This helped improve my studies. Even with being graduated, Coach Vulacno is helping and still being there with him his journey.

 

Rob Batt: What is your favorite play to run?

James Ward: Inside zone run was my favorite play in the playbook.

 

Rob Batt: What are your doing to prepare for the NFL Draft?

James Ward: I am training with Sean Smith at Exceed Sports Performance and Fitness in Northborough Massachusetts. I am hoping to attend the University of Massachusetts proday. I am still waiting to hear back to see if I have been accepted.

 

Rob Batt: What kind of player is a team getting in James Ward?

James Ward: They are going to get someone who loves the game of football and willing to help the team. I can catch the ball out of the backfield, I am willing to work hard and I am coachable. I want to be a leader and am always willing to learn.

 

Rob Batt: What did you major in at Assumption?

James Ward: I majored in business management with a minor in accounting and sports management.

 

James Ward, JR Highlights – https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=17Vl7PAtCtc

 

Follow James Ward Jr on Twitter- @jaywardjr1

 

Follow NewEraScouting’s Rob Batt on Twitter- RobBatt80

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2016 Draft Interview: Adrian McDonald, S, Houston http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/22/2016-draft-interview-adrian-mcdonald-s-houston-2/ Fri, 22 Jan 2016 14:08:04 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5580 Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest strengths?

Adrian McDonald: I would say my greatest strengths are having a nose for the football. I am always around the football. I make a lot of plays. I read the QB well. I have good instincts and am very productive.

Scott Porter: What are your goals for the NFL?

Adrian McDonald. I just want to make an impact. I want to build off my college career. I feel I am the underdog going into the NFL. I want to make the most of that and live out my dream.

Scott Porter: Why should an NFL team take a chance on Adrian McDonald?

Adrian McDonald: I have big play ability to help a team in the turnover department. I am dependable. I know my assignments. I also excel on special teams. I have started since day one on special teams.

Scott Porter: Houston faced off against Florida State in the Peach bowl this year. I felt like not a lot of people gave you guys a chance in that game when they saw the matchup. You guys won that game. What was that experience like and what did that win mean for the program?

Adrian McDonald: It was real big. We didn’t do anything different. We had a chip on our shoulder like we did all year. We saw it as an opportunity for the nation to see what Houston football was about. This wasn’t a fluke season. We worked very hard this season to get to that bowl and nothing was going to change as we put the hard work in and the outcome showed us that hard work pays off. We went into that game as a huge underdog. We were a bunch of 3 star recruits going against a bunch of 5 star recruits. It was a great way for me to go out as a senior in my last game for Houston. The experience was great and I will never forget it.

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest football accomplishments?

Adrian McDonald: From a team standpoint the Peach bowl win against Florida State stands out. Nobody really thought we would have a chance but we all believed in each other. From an individual standpoint I broke the record at Houston for most interceptions. I was a Jim Thorpe award semifinalist. I made 2nd team all conference this year.

Scott Porter: You have had a very successful year and I feel like not a lot of people give you the national credit you deserve. How has being an underdog helped you become the player you are today?

Adrian McDonald: I embrace the underdog role. I have been an underdog since high school. I came out of high school as this little 3 star recruit and felt overlooked, but it has helped me in many ways. I know I have to prove people wrong and I work harder knowing that. I felt like not a lot of teams wanted to take a chance on me because of my size. When I got to Houston it drove me to work harder. I am a big competitor and I wasn’t going to let those things stop me from being the player I wanted to be. When I was a Freshmen I played behind a guy by the name of D.J. Hayden who ended up being a first round pick of the Oakland Raiders. He took me under his wing and I learned a lot from him. As I became an upperclassmen and developed into a leader I took on the same role as D.J. helping the younger players and taking them under my wing. I focus on competing and becoming a better player ever day.

Scott Porter: What are you going to be doing this off-season to prepare yourself for the NFL draft?

Adrian McDonald: I am focusing on getting my body and my mind right. I am working on everything I can to become the best player I can be when I get into an NFL camp. I am looking forward to my pro day and hopefully I can turn some heads there. I am working out at the University of Houston. I have been training with Yancy McKnight. I am working hard on drills to post the best number I can in front of the scouts.

Scott Porter: What are your hobbies off the field?

Adrian McDonald: When I can get away and the weather is nice I like to golf. I don’t have a lot of time away from football so when I do I just like to relax and watch movies. I like to eat (laughing). My favorite thing to eat is barbecued baked potatoes.

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2016 NFL Draft Interview: Kavon Frazier, S, Central Michigan http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/21/2016-nfl-draft-interview-kavon-frazier-s-central-michigan/ Thu, 21 Jan 2016 13:27:50 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5574 See below as Kavon Frazier discussed the upcoming NFL Draft and his experience at Central Michigan below.

 

Follow Scott Porter of NewEraScouting on Twitter @BlitzingDog3

 

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest football strengths?

 

Kavon Frazier: One of my greatest strengths is my instincts on the field. I have been playing the game since I was 7. The Safety position you have to have great instincts to survive at the Safety position. My size/speed combination and my ability to tackle is another strength of mine. This season I had a great season. Finished with 108 tackles so I was very productive and I am good at tackling in open space.

 

Scott Porter: What do you like most about playing the Safety position?

 

Kavon Frazier: I like the pressure. All eyes are on you when the ball is in the air. You’re on an island. If you get beat deep everyone is going to know about it. There is a lot of open space in front and behind you. The Safety position requires you to think and react quickly. I like being in the spotlight. You have to be able to support the pass like a cornerback and support the run like a linebacker.

 

Scott Porter: What are you looking forward to the most about your opportunity in the NFL?

 

Kavon Frazier: One thing I am looking forward to is continuing to play the game that I have loved since I was a kid. I don’t play the game for the money. I love the game of football. I am looking forward to playing the game at the highest level. I am looking forward to the opportunity to compete and match my skill set against the top players in the league.

 

Scott Porter: Why should an NFL team take a chance on Kavon Frazier?

 

Kavon Frazier: One reason why an NFL team should take a chance on me is because I am versatile. I can excel on special teams. My college coach was a special teams coach in the NFL for 25 years. When he came in he taught us the fundamentals about special teams and how important special teams are. I think that I can excel on special teams and eventually develop into a starter and a leader on a team. I have the versatility and experience of playing both free safety and strong safety. My first two years at college I played strong safety and then moved to free safety. I feel that versatility will help me a lot. My size is also a reason. You don’t find a lot of safeties my size which is 6’0” 225. I have the ability to run too.

 

Scott Porter: What are your hobbies off the field?

 

Kavon Frazier: I use to play basketball. I don’t get to play a lot anymore but when I have some free time I like to shoot around or play a friendly pick up game once in awhile. I am a pretty relaxed person. I like to watch Netflix in my free time.

 

 

 

 

Scott Porter: What are your goals for the NFL?

 

Kavon Fazier: You know, my first goal is to make a 53 man roster. That is my main goal right now. After that happens my next goal is to contribute and help my team win games. As I develop myself I will continue with bigger goals. Right now my focus is making that 53 man roster.

 

Scott Porter: What was your overall experience like at Central Michigan?

 

Kavon Frazier: Man one word I think of when you ask me that question is the word, “Family”. I honestly don’t think there is another team in the nation that can say they have been what we have been through this season. We have been through more in this last season then my first three seasons combined at Central Michigan. We had to be a family to overcome a lot of adversity. Our team doctor passed away, and then one of our brothers/teammates passed away. That was tough on us all when Derrick Nash lost his battle with leukemia. We took turns wearing his jersey during the season to honor him. I actually got to wear his jersey twice. Once during the bowl game which was my final game at Central Michigan. Then we received the news that our head coach John Bonamego was diagnosed with tonsil cancer. We came together as a team and overcame those obstacles. It made use closer like a family. Some of those guys will be in my wedding someday. I made friends that I will have forever.

 

 

Scott Porter: What is your plan for life after football?

 

Kavon Frazier: I graduated with a degree in child development. I want to help out children at risk who may not be as fortunate as others. I want to be able to inspire kids who may not think their dreams are possible because they may not feel they have the opportunity to make their dream a reality. I want to impact people the way I was impacted by others growing up. I went to a Christian school so I had a lot of father figures growing up even though my dad was never around. I had a lot of role models I could look up to as a kid so I would like to start my own mentoring program to give back what was given to me when I was younger.

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2016 Draft Interview: Margo Reed, CB, South Alabama http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/20/2016-draft-interview-margo-reed-cb-south-alabama/ Wed, 20 Jan 2016 13:27:04 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5570 Margo Reed of South Alabama chats with Scott Porter of NewEraScouting about the upcoming NFL draft and his time at South Alabama.

 

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest strengths?

 

Margo Reed: My greatest strengths are my speed and agilities. I have a natural ability to make plays when the ball is in the air.

 

 

Scott Porter: Why should an NFL team give Margo Reed a shot?

 

Margo Reed: A NFL team should give me a shot because I’m hungry. I’ll come everyday to work and get better.

 

 

Scott Porter: What was your overall experience like at South Alabama?

 

Margo Reed: My experience at South Alabama was great. I enjoyed watching the program grow as a whole from the coaching staff to the players.

 

 

Scott Porter: What are your greatest football accomplishments?

 

Margo Reed: My greatest football accomplishments are winning best walk-on award at South Alabama and earning a full scholarship.

 

 

Scott Porter: What will you miss most about playing college football?

 

Margo Reed: I would miss most about college football are the amazing South Alabama fans, the atmosphere at Ladd Stadium and playing at home in front of my family.

 

Scott Porter: What hobbies do you have off the field?

 

Margo Reed: My off the field hobbies are working-out and hanging-out with my little brother.

 

 

Scott Porter: Playing at South Alabama, a smaller school. They have had a decent amount of players make NFL rosters in the past few years. Do you think playing for a smaller school has been beneficial?

 

Margo Reed: Yes it has been beneficial because of my background and the route it took me to get to this point in my career. Playing at South Alabama help me grow as a person on and off the field. Playing at a smaller school made me realize I have to work for everything in life nothing would be giving to me.

 

 

Scott Porter: What do you like most about playing the DB position?

 

Margo Reed: I like being on the island by myself and I’m a smaller corner so I like the look on the bigger receivers face when I lock him down.

 

Follow Scott Porter on twitter @BlitzingDog3

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2016 Draft Interview: Jordan Canzeri, RB, Iowa http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/18/2016-draft-interview-jordan-canzeri-rb-iowa/ Mon, 18 Jan 2016 23:01:22 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5567 NewEraScouting’s Scott Porter sits down with Iowa RB Jordan Canzeri to talk about his experience while playing football at the University of Iowa and the upcoming NFL draft.

 

Follow Scott Porter of NewEraScouting on twitter @BlitzingDog3

 

Scott Porter: What was your overall experience like playing football at the University of Iowa?

 

Jordan Canzeri: The journey at the University of Iowa couldn’t have been any been written any better then it was. I often think to myself how different things could have been for me had I attended college elsewhere. It would not have been the same. I don’t know where I would be today if I wasn’t at Iowa. God put me through a lot of tests with injuries and overcoming different types of adversity while at Iowa. It crafted me into the man I am today thanks to my coaches and teammates. Coach Ferentz guided me and prepared me on and off the field. I am thankful for having a coach who really cares about me not only on the field but off the field as well. I have learned so much from my time at Iowa. I wouldn’t change it for the world. It was an honor to play for the University of Iowa in front of the greatest fans in college football as well as with my coaches and teammates who have shaped me into the person I am today. Playing at Kinnick stadium is an unbelievable experience and something I will never forget. There is no doubt in my mind that Iowa has the best fans in college football. I will never forget how emotional I got on the sidelines during the Rose Bowl. I will never forget how loud the Iowa fans were when we scored our first field goal of the game. The fans were so proud of us for getting to that game and the season we had. I believe most fans would have left or would have been upset that their team didn’t win that game. After the game Iowa fans waited for us and cheered us even after a tough loss. I am just so blessed to be part of this team and a rich history with this program. I am thankful God put me here and I was able to live 5 years here. It was a great 5 seasons.

 

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest strengths?

 

Jordan Canzeri: I feel that my greatest strength is my full commitment to the game of football. I am willing to do whatever is asked of me and give 100% effort every time I step foot on the field. I feel I am a versatile RB who runs tough with good speed and I can catch out of the backfield. I am willing to adjust and I am very coachable. I listen to criticism well and use it to help myself become a better player. I help the team in anyway if I can.

 

 

Scott Porter: What do you like most about playing the RB position?

 

Jordan Canzeri: I like the accountability aspect of the position. Coaches need a lot of trust in their RB’s and there is a lot of weight placed on my shoulders when helping the team win football games. You have to be very unselfish to play the RB position. You are expected to block for your QB on blitzes, catch the ball out of the back field, and get tough yardage on the ground. There are so many ways to impact the game as a RB. I feel like the RB position is an important part of the team puzzle because that position requires you to do a lot more then just carry the football. It requires a lot of the big things that go unnoticed during the course of a game. As a RB you also have to give a lot of credit to the entire team because without your blocking you aren’t going to be able to pick up the yardage. You have to care about the success of the team, not just individual success and stats to be a successful RB and teammate.

 

Scott Porter: What do you feel is your greatest football accomplishment?

 

Jordan Canzeri: I feel my greatest football accomplishment is being an important part of guiding this Iowa team to a historic season.  Even when there were times when it was best for me be on the sidelines during different situations during the game. This team is going to be remembered for a long time not just by the Iowa fans but from a national level as well. My success helped the team win and to be part of that was a great accomplishment.

 

Scott Porter: What was the Rose Bowl experience like?

 

Jordan Canzeri: It was a great experience and one I will never forget. It was great to be part of a rich history and represent Iowa at the Rose Bowl. The hospitality was awesome. It was a great experience being in California and playing the grand daddy of all the bowl games.  I will never forget the experience and the opportunity it gave me. I remember growing up watching, Texas vs. USC in the Rose Bowl championship game where Vince Young had an amazing game and to be able to say that I played in the same game my Senior season is pretty remarkable. Something I couldn’t have ever imagined.

 

Scott Porter: Why should an NFL team give Jordan Canzeri a shot?

 

Jordan Canzeri: Ever since I was little the NFL has been everything to me. I wasn’t just watching the NFL I was dreaming about playing in the NFL. I am 100% dedicated to the game and will give everything I have to the organization that gives me a shot both on the field and off the field. I am a great teammate and have great leadership skills. I will continue to develop and get better. I love the game of football. Growing up watching the NFL it was always a dream of mine to get there. I remember when I was a kid having a plastic Jets and Packers helmet. I remember a day where it was hailing outside and I went outside put on my Packers helmet and played football in the hail. I was envisioning myself playing in the NFL in a bad weather game. That memory as a kid has always stuck with me. I want to make the most of any opportunity that comes my way. If given the chance I am going to commit and give 100% in everything that is asked of me.

 

Scott Porter: What hobbies do you have off the field?

 

Jordan Canzeri: Off the field I like to hang out with my teammates. I like to go to the University of Iowa Children’s hospital. It brings me great joy to see the children smile after going through a rough time. It is a humbling experience for me to see the smiles on their faces and the joy it brings them when visiting. I enjoy seeing them happy. I also like to get involved with school programs. I like to help make a difference in the community. God put me on this stage to influence others. I see so many kids make mistakes and I like to be a good role model and influence young people as much andas often as I can.

 

Scott Porter: What will you be doing this off-season to prepare yourself for your NFL shot?

 

Jordan Canzeri: I decided to stay and train here at Iowa instead of going to a training facility. I wanted to work with our strength coach Chris Doyle. I am grateful for all the other offers I had but I really enjoy working with Coach Doyle who is one of the best strength and conditioning coaches in the sport. I am going to work on all areas to improve my chances. I am going to be working on my 40 time and complete myself in every phase. I want to gain muscle without losing my speed. With the amount of work I will be doing with coach Doyle I know I will be ready and with the amount of film work I will be watching with coaches I feel I made a good decision to stay at Iowa to prepare myself. I am very happy here. It doesn’t get any better then working with Coach Doyle

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2016 Draft Interview: Bruce Johnson, C, Maine http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/17/2016-draft-interview-bruce-johnson-c-maine/ Sun, 17 Jan 2016 15:01:15 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5563 Scott Porter of New EraScouting sits down with one of the top center’s in college football. Bruce Johnson of Maine.

 

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest strengths?

 

Bruce Johnson: My greatest overall strengths are my athleticism, leadership, and coaching ability. As the game changes and becomes faster, there has been more emphasis on open field blocking. This is something that I worked on for a whole off season and excelled at it throughout my senior year.

 

 

Scott Porter: Share your experience at Maine with us.

 

Bruce Johnson: Cold, Wet, Dark, Gloomy. Going to a school like Maine forces you to turn into a man quickly. There are not many resources, and things were never given to us. We don’t have the huge facilities, fancy gear, or the huge fan base. It is a struggle on a daily basis and all we had was our brotherhood to make it through the day, whether it was 5 am workouts in the dome when it was 4 feet of snow and -10 degrees outside, or summer workouts where players would be piled in a house, sleeping on floors with no money or food to eat. The family bond that was made amongst the players was the best part of it all. I met guys that I will be friends with for the rest of my life. Overall, I had a blessed career being a 2 time All-American/ All-Conference player and capping it off with the prestigious Rimington Award. Through ups and downs, championships and bad season, I am grateful for every second that I spent at Maine.

 

 

Scott Porter: What is the toughest part about playing the C position?

 

Bruce Johnson: Center is much like playing guard except you have to snap a ball, know the playbook like the QB, and you have no forward momentum because you sit in a parallel stance all game long. It is a position that is not really “Natural”. Center takes time because of the terminology and the game play. Snapping a ball is the most important part of every play and there are any slight mistakes, the play is over.

 

 

Scott Porter: How do you think playing for a smaller program in Maine has helped form you into the player you are today?

 

Bruce Johnson: It helped me because of the fact that nothing was ever given to us. We are a blue collar program that has to really strive and grind for everything that we earn. I had the choice to go to other schools, but I am grateful that Maine showed me how to get it on my own and become a man on and off the field. Maine also presented me with the opportunity to further my career because of the long list of NFL standouts that are now Maine alumni.

 

 

Scott Porter: What are you going to do to elevate your game to the next level?

 

Bruce Johnson: As of now, I am training at home in Rochester, New York, at Power Train with former seven year NFL veteran Adam Terry. I’m doing an elite eight week program to get me ready for my pro day that consist of meal prep, two days of position work, four days of training, and three regeneration days. Every day I train is a day that I use to increase my draft stock as the pro day approaches.

 

 

Scott Porter: Why should an NFL team give Bruce Johnson a shot?

 

Bruce Johnson: I am a coachable player that has the ability to play multiple positions along the offensive line and also snap on special teams. I am a natural center that has the quickness and lateral agility to get out in open space and make blocks downfield. Off and on the field, I am a natural leader that loves to work hard, compete, and help others in any way possible to better their lives.

 

Scott Porter: Who has been your biggest influence throughout your career?

 

Bruce Johnson: My biggest influence throughout my career has been my family. They have always pushed me to be the best I can be and have been there to support me mentally, physically and financially when it came to getting a trainer at the start of my college career. Everyone in my inner circle has pushed me to become a better athlete than I had ever envisioned and would always support me no matter how crazy my dream or goal might have been.

 

Follow Scott Porter on Twitter @BlitzingDog3

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2016 Draft Interview: Taj Letman, S, Marshall http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/10/2016-draft-interview-t-j-letman-s-marshall/ Sun, 10 Jan 2016 23:26:11 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5557 NewEra’s Scott Porter goes 1 on 1 with Marshall S Taj Letman. They discuss the upcoming draft, T.J’s time at Marshall and much more.

 

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest strengths on the football field?

 

Taj Letman: I feel that my biggest strengths are my ability to cover anyone on the field. I am good at covering the slot or whatever is needed from me. I feel I am also a great open field tackler and am a complete safety.

 

Scott Porter: What type of a person is an NFL team getting in Taj Letman?

 

Taj Letman: They are getting a blue collar person who can cover all positions. They are getting someone who isn’t afraid to work hard and will do whatever is asked of him. They are getting someone who is standout on special teams as a gunner on punts or covering kicks. They are getting a player with a lot of upside who has the complete package.

 

Scott Porter: What is your favorite part about playing the DB position?

 

Taj Letman: My favorite part is the challenge it brings due to the pressure of playing the position. It is up to you to make the play. I also like the competition part of the position. You have to win your one on one battle every snap. You also have to have a short memory and bounce back if you do get beat.

 

Scott Porter: What hobbies do you have off the field?

 

Taj Letman: I don’t have a lot of time away from the game but I like watching movies.

 

Scott Porter: What will you be doing this offseason to prepare yourself for the NFL?

 

Taj Letman: I was invited to participate in the Tropic SR bowl in Miami, FL. I am looking forward to that and hope I can impress the scouts there. I am currently training in Cincinnati. I am training at the same facility that Luke Kuechly trains at in the off-season. I am focusing on everything I can to better myself for an NFL opportunity.

 

Scott Porter: What are you looking forward to the most about your opportunity in the NFL?

 

Taj Letman: The experience. I am looking forward to going out and lining up against the best of the best in the NFL. I want the opportunity to make a 53 man roster and develop myself into a good NFL football player. I am looking forward to playing against and with an elite class of football players.
Scott Porter: Your head football coach Doc Holliday has been a very successful coach and has built quite the program at Marshall. What success does he have in your development as a player?

 

Taj Letman: He is a great leader. I loved playing for Doc Holliday. He is a man of his word and a very good person and football coach. He believed in me and gave me the opportunity I needed at Marshall. I learned a lot from Doc Holliday on and off the field. I taught me how to work hard and practice hard. He taught me how to be tough mentally. Doc has won over 30 games in 3 seasons. I admire him a lot.

 

Scott Porter: What was your overall experience at Marshall like?

 

Taj Letman: Playing football at Marshall was a great experience. It taught me a lot about myself and how to work hard for everything I want. It was a lot of hard work and a daily grind but it all paid off and put me in the position I am in today.

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2016 Draft Interview: E.J. Hilliard, QB, Valdosta State http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/06/2016-draft-interview-e-j-hilliard-qb-valdosta-state/ Wed, 06 Jan 2016 13:23:55 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5552 EJ Hilliard sits down for a draft interview with Scott Porter of NewEraScouting.

 

Scott Porter: You were selected to play in a post season All-Star game known as the Dream bowl. What does that mean to you?

 

E.J. Hilliard: Being invited to the Dream Bowl was a great accomplishment. It was a testament to what my senior season represented at Valdosta State. I’m thankful for my teammates and coaches for helping me elevate my game to get my recognition. I also thank my father for doing what he did reaching out to the organizers of the bowl game and getting them to extend an invitation. It’s another platform to display my skill set, character, and passion for the game in front of a larger audience.

 

Scott Porter: What do you like most about playing the QB position?

E.J. Hilliard: What I love most about playing the Quarterback position is the excitement and thrill the responsibility brings. I also love the fact that I could show my intelligence and my charisma to lead a team. Being a Quarterback carries way beyond the field and I like the standard the position holds me to. It’s a fraternity and an honor.

Scott Porter: What is the toughest part about playing the position?

E.J. Hilliard: The toughest part about playing Quarterback is being prepared each and every week physically and mentally. Also being able to handle the pressure, the demands, and expectations the position entails.

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest strengths?

E.J. Hilliard: I believe my greatest strengths are my decision making, accuracy, arm strength, competitive nature, mobility as well as intelligence.

Scott Porter: A lot of people aren’t able to watch Valdosta State play which is a pretty successful program. Can you explain to people what kind of season you had as a team and as a player?

E.J. Hilliard: Valdosta State is a very storied, rich and historic program and I’m thankful that my road in life led me through that program. We had a great season, fell short of our main goal which was a National Championship but the bond we created was unbelievable. We went on a six game winning streak to keep our playoff hopes alive after losing two conference games back to back which ending in the second round of the playoffs. As a player I believe I had a good season, I was blessed with a coaching staff, support system that believed in me as a player and as their leader. I threw 22 Touchdowns versus 5 Interceptions, I did my best to protect the football and give my team the best chance at winning.

Scott Porter: What are your goals?

E.J. Hilliard: My goals are to be the best Quarterback I can be, I love the game of football and the joy as well as excitement it’s brings. To play professionally is a gift and would be a testament to the hard work that I put it to get here. I want to have longevity in professional football, as well as a successful career. I want to represent my last name and continue to make my family proud of me.

Scott Porter: What are you looking forward to the most about your opportunity in the NFL?

E.J. Hilliard: What I am looking forward to the most about my opportunity in the NFL is the chance to showcase my ability to be able to perform on the highest level of football. I am also looking forward to what I will be able to learn and use to elevate my game and make me a better player as well as person.

Scott Porter: What separates you from other QB prospects?

E.J. Hilliard: What separates me from other Quarterback prospects will be my dedication to my job. The time I will put into mastering the scheme as well as my position. I also believe what separates me from other Quarterback prospects is my ability to see things and react, my spatial awareness and my progression through reads.

Scott Porter: What type of person is an NFL team getting in E.J. Hilliard?

E.J. Hilliard: The type of person an NFL would get with E.J. Hilliard is a young man who is coachable. I will be able to learn and understand an offensive scheme. I am passionate about the game and I will always give my best every chance I get. I was raised well by my loving parents so I wouldn’t do anything to draw unnecessary or negative attention to myself or the organization.

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2016 Draft Interview: Donnie Duncan, CB, New Mexico http://www.newerascouting.com/2016/01/03/2016-draft-interview-donnie-duncan-cb-new-mexico/ Sun, 03 Jan 2016 17:52:23 +0000 http://www.newerascouting.com/?p=5549 Scott Porter of NewEraScouting sits down with New Mexico CB Donnie Duncan.

 

Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest strengths?

Donnie Duncan: I feel that my greatest strengths are my playmaking ability; I have a nose for the ball.

Scott Porter: What are your expectations of yourself in the NFL?

Donnie Duncan: I expect to continue to have fun and compete with the best that this league has to offer. I have waited for this opportunity all my life and it’s finally here so whatever organization wants me will get someone that will continue to work hard and get better everyday and everything else will fall into place.
Scott Porter: What do you feel are your greatest football accomplishments?

Donnie Duncan: My greatest football accomplishment are winning my high school’s first championship in history my senior year (the same school Warren Moon attended) and getting to a bowl game my senior year of college, the first since 2007.

Scott Porter: What was your bowl game experience like?

Donnie Duncan: It was an eye opener for me; it showed me what big time college football was all about. Not too many people can say that their bowl game was a home game; you had to be there to experience that atmosphere on game day, too live! I’m just glad we got to experience that before I finished up my collegiate career.

Scott Porter: What are you looking forward to the most about your opportunity in the NFL?

Donnie Duncan: I’m looking forward to competing with the best of the best and getting better along the process.

Scott Porter: Who has been your biggest influence throughout your collegiate career?

Donnie Duncan: My family, they are my “Why” so when I play, I play for the name on the front and the back of my jersey. But when I go home its feels good to have my family who are going to keep it real with me and keep me level headed.

Scott Porter: What is your favorite part about playing the DB position?

Donnie Duncan: Competing! You’re on an island by yourself the majority of the time so you’re going to have to hold your own out there. At corner it is me versus the QB and the WR and I’m going to choose me every time.

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