Clowney is About Power and “Pride”

piture by Leslie Minzey

Clowney is an athletic freak. He is taller, faster, and stronger.

But Clowney is use to this attention. Starting as early as his sophomore year of high school he has had Youtube videos capturing his skills and going viral. From there he was rated the number one high school player out. Many say he is as good as Adrian Peterson and could just be the NFLs Lebron James.

Pro Player Insiders took note of Clowneys power at the Gamecocks Pro Day where over 160 media sources were in attendance. This was much higher then the past years attendance of 20-40 reporters on hand. At the podium Clowney spoke about a wide range of things that must be noted in order to get to know the potential first round pick. His answers had a couple common themes including the love he has for his SC teammates, the “pride” that comes with being the #1 pick, never playing on a losing team, and his recent meeting with Texans Coach O’Brian.

Check out the full podium interview below:

Q: How open are you to play linebacker position if a team asks you to?

Jadaveon Clowney: I haven’t played in a while, but I’m looking forward to it. I really want to go back to that. I always told my teammates, I love to get a running head start on the edge. It would be easier to pass rush that way. I’m just looking forward to playing again.

Q: Was it a good decision to forego the positional drills at the combine?Cloweny ; Crolina

Clowney: It’s something that I have worked on for the combine. Just working on combine drills not of field drills so just waited for pro day to show them what I got.

Q: Did you prove you’re self today on your work ethic?

Jadaveon Clowney: I think I did, I still have a lot of  improvements to do on the field but today was another step I took to show them what I got, show them I can move I think I did pretty good today.

Q: Did you bench today?

Clowney: No, sir

Q: How did dinner go last night with Texans Coach O’Brian what kind of questions did they ask you? How do you think you came across?

Clowney:  It went good you know?We ATE and had a conversation about families and everything, they asked me the same question everybody been asking about my work ethic. I told them the same thing. I think I work just as hard as anybody. I just keep on pushing and get to the NFL Draft.

Q: Are you tired of answering that question?

Clowney:  I’ve been tired of it. I’ve been tired of answering a lot of questions but it’s something you have to do so just dealing with it.

Q: Do you have any individual drills set up or any individual work outs set up already?

Clowney:  I have two set up already but later down the road.  The Rams and the Falcons I want to say those are the only two.

Q: Can you talk about the biggest adjustment you hope to make at the next level? What’s the main thing you feel you got to work on before take the field for your first game?

Clowney:  It’s really learning the game that’s going to be my next biggest hard step. I got to improve on talent wise and athletic skills. It’s learning the game the game is another step up with a lot of smart guys with a lot of talent the same as you got.



Q: Towards the end of that session Romeo Connell was working with you. What’s it like to kind of get close to somebody like that? And to know that you could maybe possibly work with him in the future.

Clowney: It’s great. I had a guy work me like that Bret Long during my sophomore year at Carolina pushing me just like that. I always asked him man why you pushing me like that?

He would say I want you to be great; I want you to be one of the best I feel like these guys want you to be the best to so they push you that way.

Q: are you following free agency and trying to figure out what team is going to pick you?

Clowney:  No. Not really on my mind. I’ve just really been working out. I know that I can land pretty much anywhere I just want to be ready when that time comes.

Q: what was it like being out here on the field probably be the last time you do anything on this field before you come back and get cheered by the crowds?

Clowney:  Man, it was great you know? I’ve been looking forward to it. I’ve been talking about it all week saying man I just can’t wait for pro day to get here and get going. I’ve been watching for the last few years since I’ve been at Carolina watching other guys go through it. I was just looking forward to getting back and move and dropping in coverage and all that. I wish we had pass on hit someone just out here moving around.

Theresa Villano:  Is there a current player that you keep in touch with that has been mentoring you?

Clowney:  No, not really a player. I always talk to my old team mates you know.  I always call and check on them. They see how they are doing and they calling me see how I’m doing. The always telling me you training, you training, it’s a big day for you man. Always telling me how big the next step is and its process and to take it serious you don’t want to have no regrets on what’s going to happen to you. Just keep pushing.

Theresa Villano: Your phones probably blowing up, who do you text message the most?

Clowney:  Probably my mom, she’s always texting me.

Q: Being in this atmosphere today what is what you expected was it more than you would imagine it would be?

Clowney:  I think it was what I expected.  I said there was going to be a lot of cameras out here people recording. I told the other guys to just get ready man just go out and have fun. When you’re having fun you don’t get tired. Have fun with it, its football we’ve been doing these drills for years.

Q: How do you balance what people are saying about you and the criticism you hear? Staying focused and trying to turn that into something positive.

Clowney:  I never worry about what people say about me. I’m dealing with them each and every day. It’s like a family in the locker room. When I was here every time the media says something about me they always say don’t worry about it I got your back. It’s a family it that locker room. I’ve dealt with that my family back home says not to worry about it and to just keep working hard it’s going to get better.

Q: You met with Texans Coach O’Brian last night. What where your initial impressions of him?

Clowney:  He’s a great guy. He wants you to work, he’s all about working and being that guy he wants you to be a great player for him. We talked about his locker room he got a group of good guys up there; they don’t want no bad vibe up there in the locker room. I’m not that guy I’m a guy that smile and cracks jokes a lot but when it’s time to play I’m on top of that to also.

Q: Following up on Linebacker, when is the last time you played it? It sounds like you’re at point that you prefer that or you just feel open to it?

Clowney:  I feel like I can play it, every time my teammates telling me about playing that position. I’m not playing a position on the field I’m an athlete. So once I get to start at working at whatever you want me to play at I can be good at it no matter what I just have no problem dropping and moving.

Q: Do you feel like you should be the first pick?Clowney-Carolina

Clowney:  Yes what you think? I don’t know any guy up here that’s going to say no. If you ask another guy that and they say no I don’t know what they doing out here, so yes I feel like I should be the first pick.

Q: After spending time with Texas do you feel like you could be the first pick?

Clowney:  I don’t know I just want to let them know what type of guy they are getting in the locker room and out on the field and everything about me. I don’t have no bad history or bad I wasn’t really worried about that part what every they want to know I’ll answer.

Q: If the Texans take you are you intrigued with the possibility of playing with J.J. again? Have you spoken with the team owners/GM on what’s life like with the Texans?

Clowney:  I spoke to him and he said the defense is really one of the best. But with J.J. Watt to play with… a guy like that, that would be great fit for them just playing on the side of him would be great. No telling how far I will get in this game.

Q: What was it like for you to be in the Houston Rockets Locker room, what would it mean for you if they took you?

Clowney:  Them guys are just like me, they like to have fun and crack jokes but when it’s time to play its time to be serious on the court. We had a great time in the locker room; it was pretty exciting for me.

Q:  Is you knee bother you at all giving you any problems?

Clowney:  No, Sir.

Q: Secondly, when you get that question about work ethic from coaches or media who ever. Do you understand that question? Is there anything justifiable with the question or do you think it’s unfair?

Clowney:  I understand it well, but I think I believe it’s unfair because work ethic is not a problem. I come out here every Saturday I play my hardest on the field. I might be the only person you’re watching you all might say he look tired but look around. I’m not the only person tired here it’s a long game you’re going to get winded every now and again. That’s why we have backups or rotate. In the NFL there’s a lot of guys everybody getting paid to their job I’ll have plenty of guys to rotate with so I don’t think I’ll have a problem.

Q: Why should you should be #1 pick?

Clowney:  I can pretty much do it all, anything on defense I can help I can be a playmate to go out here set the tone for the next guy coming out and help my team out and win games. Every team I’ve played on we have never had a losing season. Before I got there I could watch them lose not just here but back in high school. When I was in middle school I’d just say that a losing team wasn’t going to be my team when I play on that team. I come in with a “change attitude.” I just tell the players we aren’t going to start losing.

Q: What are you going to miss most about your college experience?

Clowney:  My teammates… boy. Those are a good group of guys, they are family and brothers. Everybody had each other’s backs cracking jokes and laughing with each other. (Here) you always run into a guy that kind of has the same background as you had growing up. Having that in the locker room to know somebody has the same thing you’re going through is great to sit there and talk about our problems. Having someone to count on to not tell anyone your business. That’s what I’m going to miss about playing with Carolina and having this group of guys here.


Q: Being the #1 high school recruit coming out of South Point, how important is it to you to be that #1 pick? Is it just to be for a matter of pride or is it more about fitting with a team?

Clowney:  It’s a pride thing. I told my Coach I will come to Carolina for three years I want to be 1st, 2nd, or 3rd place in draft.  They told me that you will be if you come. They (the coaching staff) helped me get to my goal. I just told myself to work to get to that point.



For more follow Theresa_PPI @playerinsders

Photographer: Leslie Mincey

Graphic Photo by Mike Yduarte

Trish Scott Contributed to this post

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