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Draft Transcript: Telvin Smith

Posted May 10, 2014

Quotes from LB Telvin Smith after he was drafted by the Jaguars.

LB TELVIN SMITH CONFERENCE CALL

(On what he will bring to the Jaguars’ defense) “The coverage skill, the speed, sideline to sideline player, the passion for the game. I’m going to be that guy you saw on film; if anything I’m going to be more excited to get to this next level and embrace it being a Jaguar.”

(On if he’s excited to come to  a team with former FSU players Geno Hayes and Dekoda Watson) “Down in Jacksonville they’re ‘Nole-blooded and they’re just trying to keep it going. Tough players come out of Florida State, you’ve got to be tough to play there. We are one of the premier college football programs. So to go and come behind those guys, I’m elated. I’m ready to learn.”

(On why didn’t FSU beat Tim Tebow) “I wasn’t there when Tebow played for Florida, but you see what happened when I came.”

(On failed drug test) “I talked to Coach Gus and everybody leading up to the draft. It was a dumb mistake that I made. Coming off of hiatuses, sometimes you get outside of your box and you make dumb mistakes. That was something I talked with the coaches about. It was a decision I made and I have dealt with the consequences of it. That is behind us, we are ready to move forward. I told the coaches that that is behind us and we are going to move forward and go get us a Super Bowl, it’s destiny.”

(On now having to be in an NFL drug testing program) “That’s fine. Like I said, there are choices you make and consequences behind the choices that you make. That was a choice that I made and it’s going to make the NFL process a little bit tougher for me starting out, but I’ve got to go through it. I know I’m going to be OK, I’m tough. I know that with my coaches, with my teammates behind me that I’ll be good.”

(On if he will be more careful now) “That’s it, no mistakes. It’s life, we are going to make mistakes in life, but I’m not going to make the same mistakes I did when I was in college or going through this process. We are ready to move forward and get better every day and go out here and win the Super Bowl.”

(On his relationship with the Jaguars’ staff at Senior Bowl) “Obviously it was some kind of tight bond that was built. When they came in, they came in with energy and that passion for the game. The first time they came in Coach Gus talked to us, and working with coach Bob (Babich) and the linebacker drills and all that. They’ve got an understanding for the type of player I was and what I expect from myself and from other people around me and that’s just to go hard every time and to bring the juice. I feel like I’ve got the juice and they saw that too and it just lasted and they said, ‘we’ve got to get him, we’ve got to get him,’ and I salute to them and we are going to go get us one.”

(On if it was tough to wait until his senior year to start for FSU) “In almost all situations in my life I’ve been that kind of late-bloomer guy. In boys’ club, I started off at center. I really didn’t move to running back or the skill positions until a few years. Then I got to middle school and they put me at cornerback and everybody was telling the coach, ‘don’t play him there’, so that took time. Then I got to high school and I had injuries early on, so I had to sit back and wait. My junior year, I took off and then my senior year I led the team. We didn’t win the state championship, but as a player I had a pretty good year. So going into Florida State, I took on that same mentality and you see what happened. I’m just going to take advantage of the opportunities that I have. If it’s on special teams, then I’m going to make every play that I can on special teams. I don’t think waiting would be something that holds me back or that gets me mad because I understand that everybody has a role on the team and I’m just going to play mine, whatever it may be. It may not be a sit-back role, we are going to see.”

(On if he had to sit out a year of high school football) “No, I didn’t have to sit out a whole year. I came down my 9th grade year and fell on my wrist and fractured my wrist, so I was out and I didn’t get to move up to varsity like everybody else did because my wrist was messed up. My sophomore year, that is when I messed up my finger,  that’s when I got the name ‘Q-tip’, I had to sit out a week or two and then I had to play with that cast on. So there was always something that held me back a little bit and at the same time that propelled me into the player that I became because through all those ups and downs developed that tough mentality, that go get it mentality.”

(On what position he think he will play in the NFL) “Working with (the Jaguars) in the Senior Bowl, so they’ve seen where I can fit at that outside. I was working inside, too, so we’ll see where the coaches feel wherever I can be put on the field to make plays. That’s my job, I don’t get to decide where I get to be, I get to decide how I make the plays.”

(On if he plans to add weight) “Definitely. Over time, as I get older my body spreads out some, the weight will drop on itself. I’m definitely putting on weight, seeing where the coaches want me at.”

(On what his current weight is) “I’m like 219/220 right now.”

(On if he was concerned if teams wanted to move him to safety) “No, I wasn’t. People talk about me playing linebacker, though I’ve done it for four years, and say ‘he can’t do this in this situation,’ and ‘he can’t do that,’ ‘he gets pushed out of the way.’ I’ve seen a guy who is 240 get pushed out of the way. Size matters in a lot of situations and durability over time, but I feel like I have the film to show people that I’m durable. I can go in the trenches and play there the whole game and come out the next week and still be effective in that game. I think I’ll be okay.”

(On his nickname being Q-Tip) “Back home in Georgia, that’s what everybody still calls me, but most of the time, outside of here people won’t even know what that means.”

(On how he got the nickname) “I had to wear a cast on my hand, like the club cast to support my hand. One day at practice I deflected a pass with it and my high school head coach Randy McPherson yelled out ‘Q-tip’ and from then on, it just stuck with me. We used to have this inside thing, Q-tip, and then it grew.”

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