Player Interview: WR Darren Waller, Part II

The 2nd half of my (paraphrased) interview with Darren Waller and much of what Jeff Greene had to say (the other stuff was cut for various reasons) are contained herein. Lehhgo! Fun fact I did not include in the interview: Darren Waller's grandfather was a famous jazz musician, Fats Waller!

Q: Just seeing how Stephen (Hill) took advantage of smaller DBs, and obviously watching Calvin (Johnson) over the years, does that give you kind of an idea of how you can take advantage of some of these smaller DBs?

DW: Oh, yeah. I watch film on those kind of guys just to see like, how they play and how they come off the ball and just how they react to different things. They already have an advantage physically and they're just gifted and just knowing that I have some of the similar gifts that they have, I feel like I can have a similar impact on defenses.

Q: In the past there's been some breakdowns on the offensive line that maybe led to some quicker releases by Tevin, that type of thing. What do you see now from the offensive line as far as pass protection goes?

DW: I feel like uh, our offensive line's only getting better, we have a bunch of guys that are coming back, and they're getting stronger in the weight room. They're a whole lot quicker, you know I think they're just anxious to prove that this just isn't a running offense and that they can actually sit back there and give Tevin or Synjyn or whoever's gonna be back there time, and that we can trust them on a week in week out basis and I think they're ready to do that.

Q: You mention the strength and conditioning. What's the biggest difference between Coach Peduzzi and the new gentleman, I can't remember his name? (Gotta love your intrepid snoop making a fool of himself in front of professionals...)

DW: Oh, coach Sisk? He likes to change things up, its never the same thing every day like oh on Monday we're gonna do this, Wednesday we're gonna do this, its always a mix-up, and you just never know. You're not gonna get used to it, and I feel like every week we've grown because, ya know, the running hasn't always been the same, and the lifting is just new things that we didn't do with Coach Peduzzi. We'll do, like, ankle stuff and just like all different kinds of neck exercises and just everything. Coach Sisk just puts so much time into it, he'll pull out the speakers in the indoor, play music while we're warming up to go run, I feel like that's what's great. Him and Coach Walk (Walkosky, special teams coordinator) relate to players right off the bat and that's why we've been able to [respond] to them so well.

See the rest after the jump!

Q: You originally signed here as a safety. Do you miss the defensive side of the ball?

DW: Oh, yeah I miss playing defense all the time. That's uh, that's what I love the most about football, is hitting somebody, hitting people, and I like putting people in different spots. But its cool watching guys like Fred (Holton) and them play safety, just missin' those types of days, but I mean I love playing receiver now.

Q: When did you know you were gonna make that switch?

DW: Uh, I mean while I was being recruited they told me they were considering me playing offense so I wasn't just completely blind to playing receiver coming in. That was something I always kept open to because uh, coming in whatever gets you on the field faster, I feel like that helped.

Q: Have any freshman stood out to you?

DW: We saw Justin Thomas out there for the first time last week, and he just looked as impressive as anybody. Throwing back shoulder fades, he was poppin my hands like my hands were hurting catching slant routes from him, he's got good zip, accuracy, the footwork's there too, I guess its just a matter of time for him [to play]. Tev looks, Tev's just been comfortable in the offense, he's got more pop on his throws, you can tell, I've been in his workout group a lot this summer and he's gotten a whole lot stronger and I think that's made him more confident and feel like he carries himself differently out there...it was really surprising, it was really cool

A post with Jeff Greene's interview is coming tomorrow to wrap up our player interviews for the week. Stay tuned!

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