Detroit Lions: Ten(ish) questions with...

Ten(ish) Questions With … is a weekly series where we chat with a Detroit Lions player or coach about whatever. Sometimes it’ll be football related. Sometimes, it’ll be about their dogs or something completely different. Want to hear from a particular subject, send an email to Michael.rothstein@espn.com.

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Jerome Couplin is an interesting character. He has a nickname he had little control over -- "The Osprey" -- and did things the somewhat hard way, climbing from little-known high school prospect to FCS star and now at the bottom again as an undrafted free agent trying to make the team.

The safety has had some success thus far, playing with the second unit last week and at least putting himself in position for a shot at a roster spot. I caught up with Couplin earlier this week to chat about his chances, his nickname and more.

*Some answers were edited for space and clarity.

Q: They were giving you a long look on the second team. Did that give you a feeling like, "Wow, I might actually have a shot at this thing?"

JC: “Honestly, this whole time they’ve been telling us it’s a rep chart, not a depth chart.”

Q: But you’ve been around football long enough…

JC: “Yeah, the more reps, the better, don’t get me wrong. The more reps you get, the more you can develop, the more you learn. You learn by being out there between the lines and getting a feel for things yourself. But it definitely gives me the understanding there is the fair competition there and I’ll get my chance. That’s all I can ever ask for at the end of the day.”

Q: When you’re looking at colleges, how do you end up at an FCS school? With your measurements, it would seem a FBS school would have taken a chance.

JC: “I was a late bloomer so I didn’t have the outstanding junior year that most people have when they get scholarships. I had a lot of teams looking at me going into my senior year. I had a real good year my senior year, but nobody would really pull the trigger. Or there was a coaching change situation where a coach who was recruiting me leaves, so I lose contact. After my senior year, I finished with a bunch of FCS offers and went down my list with my family and researched what was best for me. At the end of the day, William & Mary I felt would be the best pick and I don’t regret it. I would have loved to have gone to a big school, but I’m proud to say I’m part of the Tribe.”

Q: Did any FBS schools offer you?

JC: “Nah. Nope. Zero.”

Q: Being here now, ever say, see, someone should have?

JC: “I had that mindset in college so when we played a big I-A team, my mindset was to show that I belong on this field. I’m not undersized. … I could play at that level. Honestly, a lot of people told me playing against West Virginia last year and the way I played, that helped a lot. So, I didn’t get drafted, I’m undrafted, but at the same time, I’m here. So regardless of drafted or undrafted, big school or not, I have been told if you can play football, they’ll find you and they found me.”

Q: Where does The Osprey nickname come from?

JC: “Andrew Goodman, he writes for Forbes. After my pro day, it happened. He looked and was like, these numbers are ridiculous, how in the world did you not get invited to the combine, this and that. … It was nothing I did. I didn’t know about the nickname until after (the story) was released. So I didn’t know about it. It’s not like it’s something people have called me from being younger or in college. It’s something that just recently developed and just go with the flow. I can kind of understand it. I’ve always had long arms, so it’s not the first thing somebody has picked on me about.”

Q: Were you like what? Did you know what type of bird an Osprey was?

JC: “Honestly, I knew more about the aircraft than the actual bird. So I looked it up and he was like, ‘Yeah, man, your arms are so freakishly long. It’s ridiculous. Then you can get off the ground and you can jump, so it works both ways.’ I was like, ‘OK, cool, just go with it.’ “

[+] EnlargeJerome Couplin
Michael Rothstein/ESPN.comJerome Couplin, in addition to his long arms, has very loose thumbs.
Q: Has it always been the long arms?

JC: “Yeah. High school, even the beginning of college, I used to be able to scratch my knees without bending over. I didn’t have to slouch over. I’m a little taller now than when I was in college. But it was definitely, people messed with me since Day 1.”

Q: Is that the quirkiest thing you do?

JC: “My family has a history of being loose jointed so I can maneuver my body a little bit. I can put my thumb [on my wrist]. It doesn’t even hurt.”

Q: So, you going to be a contortionist as a hobby?

JC: “Nah. I don’t try to figure out what more I can do. I broke a finger once in high school and they were like how does your wrist feel stretching it. I stretched it and they were like, hold on, do it again. So I learned from injury, actually.”

Q: So ... is that the quirkiest thing?

JC: “Yeah, and the freakishly long arms. [Jason Jones] actually said something to me at practice. I was just standing there by the coach and he was like, ‘Man, your arms are so long.’ But, it comes in handy.”
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With ..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions With...: LG Rob Sims; RB Theo Riddick; DE Devin Taylor; TE Joseph Fauria; LB Tahir Whitehead; CB Darius Slay; QB Shaun Hill; WR Kevin Ogletree; C Dominic Raiola; WR Kris Durham; DT Justin Bannan; TE Brandon Pettigrew.

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- He was cut by Green Bay in September, arrived in Detroit in October, won the returner's job in November and tied a Detroit Lions record as a returner in December.

Jeremy Ross has had a interesting season in the NFL -- but one that has turned out to be quite productive for the native Californian.

He is also one of the more engaging personalities in the locker room, so we caught up with him and chatted about his favorite joke and the movie "Hook."

What’s your favorite football memory?

Jeremy Ross: I would have to say, it just happened recently. The Philadelphia game. Playing in that much snow, which was crazy to me. That was something I had never done, never experienced. Wild. I would say that’s now the top memory for football.

When you’re not playing football, what do you do? What don’t people know?

Ross: Watch movies. I don’t really have a hobby like, yeah, I do these things. I’m real simple. Chill. I like to watch movies, all different types of movies. Or go to the mall.

Favorite movie?

Ross: My favorite movie is Hook.

Wait, really? Like the Robin Williams Hook? Really?

Ross: Robin Williams Peter Pan, that Hook.

Why that Hook?

Ross: I’ve loved it since I’ve been a kid. I can still watch it. I do watch it. I like it. It’s really adventurous and it really takes me back. I like it and it’s a great movie. I liked it since I was a kid.

You remember the first time you ever watched it?

Ross: I don’t remember the first time I watched it. I was young, though. I think it was out on VHS or something like that.

You just dropped VHS. Most people won’t know what that is.

Ross: Yeah, yeah. Throwback.

How many times have you seen it?

Ross: More than 10.

So you own it now?

Ross: Yeah, I have it on DVD. They will know what DVD is.

Beyond Hook, is there a genre?

Ross: I just love movies, man. I just like different things about them, whether it be just the storylines about them, the plots. I’m not really like a movie critic but I just enjoy movies and take them for what they are. I’m real adventurous but I’m still a kid at heart so I still like the Pixar movies. But I just like different things about movies, whether it’s the inspiration of a movie, the comedies of a movie. The way they make the films, I’m interested in different things inside the movies and stuff, how they do it.

If football didn’t work out, was that a career path? Like act or be behind the camera?

Ross: Nah. I’d love to have my own show, like Jamie Foxx or Martin (Lawrence) or something like that. That’d be cool.

Are you funny enough to do that?

Ross: That’s the thing. I’m funny in conversation. I’m funny when we’re hanging out but on the spot go funny, I’m not sure that’s my cup of tea. Maybe if I would have started younger, then I probably could have did it. But now, I don’t think I’m that on the spot funny.

So what do you want to do when football is over?

Ross: It’s kind of up in the air. I’m not really sure. I don’t have it like the day football ends, this is what I want to do. So I’m not sure yet.

Any ideas?

Ross: Right, right. There’s different things, like staying in sports. Coaching or training, some type of thing, somewhere around those lines. I’d like to stay in sports in some sort.

You went to Cal, from California and then Green Bay and now Detroit, what was it like driving in the snow for the first time?

Ross: I had to drive really slow. The wheels, if I pressed the gas too hard, then the wheels started spinning. So I was driving really cautious on the roads, just driving really slow.

So you like Martin, you like Jamie Foxx, what’s your favorite appropriate joke?

Ross: On Martin, like from the show. I don’t have a favorite joke like let me tell you this joke. There’s a scene in Martin where they got snowed in and everybody, they didn’t have no food because they sent Cole out to go get some food and he came back with some frozen pizza, like literally it was frozen, like they dropped it and it shattered and he was frozen. So they were trying to scavenge around for food and Martin was supposed to go grocery shopping and he didn’t. They had no food in the house, at all. So they all spread out around the house, trying to find scraps and stuff. They all got their scraps and laid them on the table. It was like "I found this. I found these couple two nuts and one chip." Everybody was finding little small things. And Gina was over there, sneaking food, because she had a little thing and she started eating it so they had a little food. And Martin and Pam’s relationship, they don’t like each other so Martin’s clowning on Pam always. So he’s like talking to Pam, everybody got done putting their food out and he’s like, "So Pam, how much food you got stored up in your cheeks?" He was referring to her having big cheeks. The way he said it, it was just pure comedy to me.
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With ..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions With...: RB Theo Riddick; DE Devin Taylor; TE Joseph Fauria; LB Tahir Whitehead; CB Darius Slay; QB Shaun Hill; WR Kevin Ogletree; C Dominic Raiola; WR Kris Durham; DT Justin Bannan; TE Brandon Pettigrew

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Since Rob Sims arrived in Detroit from Seattle, he has become a stalwart on the offensive line next to center Dominic Raiola. Combined, the two are the veterans of a Lions offensive line that has protected Matthew Stafford well throughout the season.

When Sims isn’t trying to protect Stafford and open holes for Detroit’s running backs, he is either spending time with his family or cooking for them and others.

We caught up with Sims to chat about his grilling prowess for this week’s Q&A.

[+] EnlargeRob Sims
Scott Boehm/AP PhotoWhen not on the football field, Detroit Lions guard Rob Sims enjoys spending time with his family and grilling out.
What’s your favorite football memory?

Rob Sims: Any time? I’d say winning the national championship in college (at Ohio State). That was big, you know. I was a true freshman. I was able to start in that game and it really defined my career collegiately, you know. I’d say that.

Defined your career as a freshman?

Sims: It put me on the map, you know what I mean. Put me on the map.

How do you feel about this guy (Rodney Austin was peering over the shoulders)?

Sims: It’s one day at a time.

What’s your favorite thing to do away from football, when you’re not playing?

Sims: Just chilling with my kids. I’ve got two young kids that are starting to come to the age where they sit down with me to watch a movie. I don’t have to run around with them. That’s a lot of fun right now. I love basketball, have season tickets for the Pistons.

Why'd you get tickets for the Pistons?

Sims: We make our home here. We are here. So us being here, with the Pistons, we feel it’s important to support other teams and we try to come to Tigers games and stuff like that.

So when you’re watching movies with your kids, is it the same movie over and over?

Sims: Oh man. Yeah. It goes in cycles. It started off with "Wreck It Ralph," when "Wreck It Ralph" came out, we were all about "Wreck It Ralph." I’m trying to get (Mikaella) to the next, "Despicable Me 2" but she doesn’t want to go from "Despicable Me 1." She kind of runs the show. I’m like, ‘Hey, do you want to watch this?’ She’d say, ‘Yeah, Daddy.’ Then, we end up watching whatever. She’ll change two or three times.

Does she understand the movies or is it, oh, cool, cartoons?

Sims: I don’t think she understands some of the little jokes they make that are adult jokes, obviously, but she’ll be running around singing the songs all the time and then my little boy, he'll be sitting there ooh and ahh over the colors.

Besides hanging out with your kids, what do you do, what’s your hobby?

Sims: I like to grill a lot. Like smoke different food. Cook, stuff like that I do a lot of.

Are you any good?

Sims: Pretty good. I think Dylan Gandy’s better, but I’m a close second.

So what’s your go-to?

Sims: The guys will come over and we’ll make ribs. We’ll do chicken wings. Me and Dylan have done like a pulled pork before. We’ve never done a brisket together. I’ve done a brisket and it’s not very good. But he’s better at it.

When did you start grilling?

Sims: My dad was real big into it. Growing up, my uncles, it was kind of a pastime of ours, rain, sleet or snow, we were always out there doing it.

Before your dad passed away, did he kind of teach you everything or did you pick it up later?

Sims: He taught me a lot of that stuff. They always had me doing a lot of that stuff, always telling me I need to get my license. It was a big joke they always had. We had fun with it.

How old were you when you first grilled?

Sims: I had to be young. Had to be early teens, you know. 13, 14 years old.

So what was your grill job as a kid?

Sims: Runner. Yeah, like, go run inside and get me this sauce. Or go inside and get me this seasoning.

What is your specialty?

Sims: My ribs are pretty good.

How do you do it?

Sims: I smoke them for an hour and a half at a low temperature, wrap them in foil and then put them back on for about an hour until they get really tender. Then I usually boil my sauce and let them sit in the sauce for a little bit and boil.

Do you make your own sauce?

Sims: No, I use some different stuff. There’s some stuff out right now, it’s called Barlow’s. It’s really good barbeque sauce.

How’d you find it?

Sims: Just being in a specialty market. Had some time to do some stuff and I ran into the guy and tasted it. Actually had the guy come to my house and cook for us one time. It was kind of cool. The guy who makes the sauce. He’s a Michigan guy.
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With ..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions With...: DE Devin Taylor; TE Joseph Fauria; LB Tahir Whitehead; CB Darius Slay; QB Shaun Hill; WR Kevin Ogletree; C Dominic Raiola; WR Kris Durham; DT Justin Bannan; TE Brandon Pettigrew.

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Last month, Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz said the team was looking for more ways to incorporate rookie running back Theo Riddick into the offense.

And while that hasn't happened much -- he usually only sees a handful of plays -- he has become a reliable special teams player in his first season along with being the No. 3 running back behind Reggie Bush and Joique Bell. Riddick has four special teams tackles this season and 25 combined rushing and receiving yards. He has seen offensive snaps in each of the last three games.

We caught up with Riddick this week and chatted about Notre Dame-USC and where he gets his toughness from -- it's not somewhere you might expect.

To start off, what’s your favorite football memory?

Theo Riddick: I guess beating USC. Just everything and it was the final game for us to get in the championship and Notre Dame hasn’t been there since ’88.

You beat them more than once.

Riddick: Yeah, but that last year, with all the seniors, et cetera, that was big.

What do you like to do away from football? You’re a New Jersey guy here in Michigan.

Riddick: I’m a really simple dude, man. I don’t do much, to be honest with ya.

OK, so if you have a week off, what are you doing?

Riddick: I will play basketball. That’s what I love. I have some talent in that. Other than that, I just chill with my family. I’m a very family-oriented guy. So I love chilling with family.

Has it been hard to be away from them?

Riddick: Yes, yes. Tremendously. I’ve got a twin sister, got an older sister, two younger brothers and we’re very tight as a unit and we’re not very far off. I’ve got a twin sister, 22, got a younger brother, 21, and a younger brother, 18. My older sister, she’s 33, but she’s like a second mother so everything ties in together.

So you were the oldest kid but not the oldest kid.

Riddick: Yeah, I was right there on the cusp.

Was that weird? Did you ever have the middle child syndrome?

Riddick: Not really. I am [older] by two minutes, but the whole thing was it kind of sucked having two mothers, you know what I’m saying? They always asked me what I was doing and I was, a little kid, you want to be discrete in what you want to do, et cetera, but obviously where I live, everyone is my family. I’ve got a gigantic family, bro. I’ve got a big family, man. Gigantic.

And a lot of female influence there. What was that like growing up?

Riddick: They were tough on me. You would think growing up, I didn’t have a father in my life at the time, didn’t have a father figure, you would think I would be somewhat more effeminate in some type of ways. But, for example, my first time playing football, my mom took me out in the backyard and tackled me because she said I was too soft.

Were you like, wait, what are you doing?

Riddick: She kept tackling me until I cried. Straight up. I tell everybody the story but nobody believes me. For real.

How old were you? Did you actually cry?

Riddick: I was eight years old and hell yeah, I cried. I was eight years old. Yeah, for sure.

When she’s doing that, are you like ‘Oh my God, why am I playing football?’

Riddick: Yeah. I wanted to quit. I wanted to quit after that. The only reason I kept on playing after that was friends and obviously all of my friends played in the summer so I really didn’t have any guys to hang out with, so that’s when I forced myself to go out and that’s probably the best decision I ever made.

How many times did she hit you before you cried?

Riddick: I can’t remember vividly but I definitely remember her just spearing me and spearing me, telling me I have to get tougher. I remember the first time, I got a sweep, I got a toss to the right and I ran back like 25, 30 yards. I ran backwards. Yeah. To avoid getting hit by the opponent.

So she did that after that?

Riddick: Yeah, she did that after that. She said I was too soft.

Was she yelling at you to be tougher, too?

Riddick: Yeah, like, ‘You’re a man.’ At eight. Like you’ve got to be a man.

That seems to stick in your head still.

Riddick: Yeah. For sure. That’s what brought out my toughness.

Is your mom’s voice in your head in games now?

Riddick: Nah. But before every game, you’ve got to go out there and represent your family. That was so long ago now, it’s kind of out of my brain now. It’s just second nature to be tough.
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With ..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions With: TE Joseph Fauria; LB Tahir Whitehead; CB Darius Slay; QB Shaun Hill; WR Kevin Ogletree; C Dominic Raiola; WR Kris Durham; DT Justin Bannan; TE Brandon Pettigrew.

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Devin Taylor stands out.

[+] EnlargeDevin Taylor
Michael Rothstein/ESPN.comDefensive end Devin Taylor says each of his arm bands has a special meaning.
He has blue hair, won the triple jump in high school at 6-foot-7, and was a pain for opposing offenses during his time at South Carolina. Now in his rookie year with the Detroit Lions, he has recorded eight tackles, a sack and a forced fumble.

He’s seen more time the past two months as an injury replacement for Jason Jones and then Ziggy Ansah.

We caught up with Taylor to chat video games, football and the bands he has on his arms.

What’s your favorite football memory?

Devin Taylor: Hmm, I would say probably making my first-ever start in college. Just because almost like everyone talked about the level of competition changed so much from high school to college, and there were always a lot of doubts to whether I’d be big enough, fast enough and all that stuff. That first game kind of showed, my freshman year and everything, what I could possibly do, or the potential for me to do better things later on.

Is it something you knew you could do, or did it prove something to you?

Taylor: It was almost like working out at practice, winning reps in drills and stuff like that, and not really getting a chance to show what I can do in game situations and stuff because it was only at practice, so finally when I got the opportunity to show, I just showed out.

When you’re not playing football, what do you do?

Taylor: I do a variety of things. Fishing, possible video game stuff. Going to the movies.

Possible video game stuff? What does that mean?

Taylor: You know, I have a couple of gaming consoles. Sometimes go to the arcade and play some games.

You go to actual arcades?

Taylor: If I can find one that’s reputable. Not just any one.

Is there an arcade game that you’re focused on?

Taylor: It just varies when I get there. Sometimes I’ll do putt-putt golf, that’s fun to do as well.

When you show up at an arcade, are people like ‘Who is this 6-7 guy?’

Taylor: Just get a lot of looks for being tall. Mostly people trying to figure out who I am most of the time.

You pretty good at video games?

Taylor: I’d say I’m proficient. You can’t really say you’re good at something.

So what’s your game?

Taylor: Me? I’d probably say right now Call of Duty or a racing game, either or. The last one I played was the latest Need for Speed that came out. There’s supposed to be a new one coming out later that I might check out.

You also have all the bands that you wear on your arms, how often do you add to those?

Taylor: I don’t usually add most of the time. It’s people I’m randomly talking to and they may have a band that represents another person or a cause or a foundation or something like that. They’ll see mine and say, ‘Hey, do you want one for this?’ They’ll tell me the story behind it, and most of the time, it’s yes and I’ll put it on for that.

Which is the first one?

Taylor: These four (up on his right wrist), they are actually the first four. It first started with my team chaplain (at South Carolina). He was talking about four chairs and stuff and how there is significant meaning behind each chair. You almost want to be like in the first or second chair, society and roles in life and everything like that. That was one of the major things. This other one was actually, one of my former teammates from high school ended up getting thyroid cancer so he ended up going through surgery twice in order to get that stuff. My high school mom had made bands for him and everything, so that’s how I got that one.

Does each one have a meaning to you?

Taylor: Yeah.

What does ‘Zig The Pig’ mean?

Taylor: This one is actually a kid’s foundation, it’s called Children’s Chance (a charity dealing with kids with pediatric cancer). ... Every year back in South Carolina we’d have a dinner where we’d eat and sit with them, you know, talk with them. It was a good time and everything.

You ever worry they’ll get ripped off?

Taylor: I’ve had a few ripped off, but for the most part I’ll either wear long sleeves or I’ll tape up part of it.

Do you wear long sleeves because of that?

Taylor: No, I wear long sleeves because they are comfortable. Yeah, it’s not so much covering these up. It’s just comfortable to me to wear long sleeves.

You going to run out of room on the arms?

Taylor: Yeah, I figure when I get to a certain number, I’ll make a necklace or get a chain and wrap it around.

Do you know the number?

Taylor: Probably 50.

That’s an ambitious goal.

Taylor: Not really. It’s not out of reach. I have about 30 on right now.

Where’d you get the idea for it?

Taylor: I always used to have rubber bands, wrist bands on my wrist growing up, and then there was a one period where I had silly bands with animals and stuff, so I had those on. Then they came out with these different bands, so I pretty much started wearing those.

When did you start with this?

Taylor: Three years ago. Junior year of college.
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions With... LB Tahir Whitehead; CB Darius Slay; QB Shaun Hill; WR Kevin Ogletree; C Dominic Raiola; WR Kris Durham; DT Justin Bannan; TE Brandon Pettigrew.

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Tight end Joseph Fauria has one of the more outgoing personalities on the Lions. He's always got a story, always able to make someone laugh and made big plays during the first half of his rookie season.

A lot has been made of his red zone play and touchdown celebrations, but we caught up with Fauria to chat about life away from football -- a lot of it involving food and whether he's a typical California dude.

What’s your favorite thing to do away from football?

Joseph Fauria: Back at home I love some good beach volleyball, or even some indoor volleyball if I get a chance. Play at the high school or something like that where ever. I like to stay active and if not, shoot, eating. I like eating. Having a BBQ or something. I don’t know, just being outside in the L.A. weather and even out here, when it’s really nice here, being outside and not staying at home.

With the BBQing, is there a pit in the backyard?

Fauria: Well, my second family in Orange County, they always throw BBQs outside and when I’m over there, it’s always a good time.

Second family?

Fauria: You know, I got my family, the blood. Then my best friend’s family, where I used to live a little bit during the summer, they’d take me in. It’s cool.

So they’d have a giant pit?

Fauria: Yeah, they’d do a giant pit.

What would you roast back there?

Fauria: Tri-tip, chicken, everything, man. Making my mouth water, I’m hungry now.

You also mentioned beach volleyball, do you feel like you’re just your typical California beach guy?

Fauria: I wouldn’t say that. I’m not your typical. However, I do have tendencies and I do get caught up in saying, like (Brandon Pettigrew) called me out today because I sounded like a Cali Bro, like, ‘Broo,’ or something like that. But I would like to think that I’m not that much of a beach dude. But I love the beach.

But you are?

Fauria: I’m not a beach bum. I’m not there all the time like a surfer dude, but nothing better than sand between your toes and the sun just shining on your face and freezing your (butt) off in the Pacific Ocean. I love that.

You’re not a surfer dude, but have you surfed?

Fauria: Two times. Too difficult for me to get up.

At 6-7, that could be a problem.

Fauria: Yep, and a big board. Yeah. That’s it.

You seem like you’re a different type of dude in that you have a pretty outsized personality, what do you think is the quirkiest thing about you?

Fauria: Man, my main thing is the way I was raised by my mom and my grandparents and my whole family, they raised me. I took different qualities from each person and I’m just that type of person that always seeks friendship and always seeks camaraderie and always seeks to have fun and have a good time and put a smile on someone’s face. So my biggest quality is trying to be happy and smile and make someone else smile.

How do you go about doing it?

Fauria: I’m just myself and people like that. Most people like that. But yeah, that’s really it, I guess. I can’t put my finger on it that there’s a certain word that’s a certain quality but just being myself.

What’s the funniest thing you’ve ever done?

Fauria: There’s so many to choose from. A laundry list.

Well, what’s the most appropriate funniest thing you’ve ever done?

Fauria: That’s weird. That’s an odd question. I don’t know. It’s a hard question.

Pranks on people?

Fauria: I’m not really a prankster.

So people pull pranks on you?

Fauria: They try.

Best one you’ve been gotten on?

Fauria: I had a night out over the summer and we were responsible and didn’t drive and my car was parked kind of in the red but not bad and the next morning it was gone. Two of my friends were like, ‘oh your [car is] towed. It’s towed. You’re screwed. It’s so much money.’ This was before I was in the league. And, they had moved it the night before while I was asleep and they got me pretty good.

How long did it take you to figure out they had moved it?

Fauria: 20, 30 minutes. I was freaking out. I was trying to figure out the number [of the tow company]. It was bad. I was knocking on doors asking people ‘Do you know the number for someone who tows around here?’ It was funny, but yeah, that’s it.

Where was that?

Fauria: Manhattan Beach, Hermosa area.

Did you get them back?

Fauria: Nah, well, maybe. Yeah.
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions With... CB Darius Slay, QB Shaun Hill, WR Kevin Ogletree, C Dominic Raiola, WR Kris Durham, DT Justin Bannan, TE Brandon Pettigrew.

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- While some players went to Disneyland or back home during their off weeks, Detroit Lions linebacker Tahir Whitehead did something entirely different.

He went on his honeymoon.

Whitehead got married earlier this season to his new bride, Shannon, and discussed his proposal and how he met his wife when he was a college student at Temple in this week's "Ten(ish) Questions With..."

When you have your honeymoon on your bye week, that has to be different than most people, how did that come about?

Tahir Whitehead: It was really planning. We wanted to get married prior to the bye week so when the bye week came, we just go away and do something with each other basically. We went on our honeymoon in the middle of the season, so it worked out pretty good.

Most people don’t go on their honeymoon in the middle of the season.

TW: Most people aren’t in the position I’m in. Most people, you know, they don’t have a bye week so that’s when we timed it up. That’s what we wanted to do and it worked out that way.

How’d you meet your wife?

TW: I met her when I was in college. I actually met her when I was home on break when I was at a high school basketball game with my little cousin.

Where was that?

TW: It was in New Jersey. She was watching her little brother and I came to see my cousin and we kicked things off from there.

So did you just go up to her and say "hi"?

TW: My family was friends with her family and I kept going to the games because I liked her secretly without her knowing and eventually we ended up speaking to each other and started off as friends and then we started dating and things have been wonderful ever since.

How long ago was that?

TW: That was my junior year of college.

So how long did you go from seeing her to actually talking? What was the timeframe? You liked her but didn’t say anything.

TW: Oh, it was when I was home during the winter break from college. It was the month I was home so I went to about three games in three weeks and during that third week, I was actually about to leave and go back to school and, you know, she actually said something to me.

So she came up to you?

TW: I can’t even say she did that. I was trying to get her attention cause I knew I was going back to school and I’m like, "I’ll probably never see her again," so I had to make the move.

How’d you do it?

TW: I was walking out and then I saw her walking by the concession stand and was like, "Excuse me, can I have a minute?"

That was your line?

TW: Yeah, I try to be respectful. I was respectful when I did it and it was probably one of the best things I have ever done in my life.

What high school was it at?

TW: Seton Hall Prep.

You never thought you’d see her again. When did you realize you’d see her again, propose to her and marry her?

TW: Never thought at that point in time that that would be the woman that I married. I watched her through the course of the weeks, knew I liked her and saw that she was different from the other girls I had previously dated and it was just that spark.

How’d you propose?

TW: I proposed this past offseason when I was training. She came down from school because she stayed out here and came and visited me and we went to a restaurant and she was actually about to come back out here. It was her birthday weekend and I told her to look out the window because she had been wanting to see the White House. So she looked across and as she was looking across, I slid down on one knee and then she turned around.

That’s pretty slick.

TW: Then I proposed. It was all me.

Where did you get married?

TW: Here, at the courthouse. Had a few guys, Rob Sims, Nick Fairley, they were there for the big moment. Right in the comfort of our home and went away to the Dominican Republic.

So that must have been a nice break.

TW: Yeah. Pretty nice.
ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions With...: QB Shaun Hill; WR Kevin Ogletree; C Dominic Raiola; WR Kris Durham; DT Justin Bannan; TE Brandon Pettigrew.

Darius Slay has had a season somewhat typical of a rookie. Some high points. Some lows. Even being pulled from the starting lineup.

But throughout most of it, he’s always had a enthusiasm about him. Always, for the most part, seemed happy. That’s just the way he is.

The former Mississippi State cornerback discusses his smiling, his son, and paintballing in this week’s Ten(ish) questions with...

What’s your favorite football memory?

Darius Slay: Shoot, me scoring against Georgia. That’s where I’m from and for me to do that in my home state, I had a ball.

What’s your favorite thing to do away from football?

DS: Be with my son and play the game, that’s it.

Come on, you’ve got to do more than that.

DS: I don’t really do nothing like that. I’ve got a child so I just be chilling with my son.

But your son isn’t up here.

DS: Oh, up here? Man, if I ain’t trying to keep my body up, get massages and stuff like that, but in-season that’s what I’m doing. Offseason, I’m just going to be down south.

So what’s your favorite thing to do with your son?

DS: We play the game or if we’re back at home, we bike ride a lot. We do a lot of bike-riding. He’s got his little four-wheeler thing so we be riding little four-wheelers, having fun.

So you’re both on four-wheelers?

DS: Nah, he got a little electric one. I’ll be riding my bike, he’ll be riding his little electric four-wheeler, that’s it. Just around the community, just riding.

You always been a bike rider?

DS: I’m just trying to spend a little time with my son, that’s it. Spend a little time, get him out of the house.

What’s the weirdest thing about you?

DS: I don’t really know. I don’t really know that. I don’t think I’m weird, that’s why. I don’t know. Somebody else might think of something.

Any quirks? Superstition?

DS: I’m always smiling, no matter what, that’s it. Anything else, no. I don’t think I’m weird. Unless I’m just smiling a lot.

Why do you smile so much?

DS: I try to keep a smile on my face. If I don’t have a smile on my face, there’s a lot going on. So I be trying to avoid all of that. There’s a lot of stress.

What does it take to get a smile off your face?

DS: It gotta take a lot. I don’t know. Something gotta be serious, like mom, at home something, something gotta go wrong, that’s it. Ain’t nothing with football or nothing around something like that will make me not have a smile on my face because I’m blessed. So I just have a great opportunity.

When you look back in college, what did you do for fun?

DS: Shoot, went out a lot of times, stayed out on weekends, chilled with teammates and loved paintballing.

Paintball?

DS: We all of us as a team at Mississippi State, we went paintballing a lot.

You good? Or you get shot all the time?

DS: I was pretty decent. I didn’t want to get shot so I was pretty fast, get away.

You wear camo, the whole deal?

DS: Oh yeah, I’d be real "armyed" out. Boots and everything. Everything. Hat and everything. You ain’t hitting me. You hit me, you got to be good.

How many times you get hit?

DS: I got hit three times. I got one little one right here, though. Got hit right on the side (lifts up shirt to show a small black bruise, still there). Still got a bruise. Got caught on the side. That was the hardest one I had. One time I got shot in my hand but that’s it.

One time I got shot through the mask.

DS: Oh, that’s nasty. I bet that was nasty. And that it hurt.

Yeah, I was 13.

DS: Ooh, that had to hurt. Had to hurt.

How did you start doing that, just Mississippi State?

DS: I did it one time with my mentor in high school, you know, he has a group. As a senior he put us on paintballing for the first time my senior year. Then we all just took it at college, like let’s all go paintballing and it was like, ‘Heck yeah.’

You start it?

DS: Nah, I ain’t start it. As a team they were like, ‘Y’all want to go do something?’ It was like ‘What?’ Let’s go paintballing. One of the guys on the team, he had a paintball thing in his hometown so we went there with him.
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions: WR Kevin Ogletree; C Dominic Raiola; WR Kris Durham; DT Justin Bannan; TE Brandon Pettigrew

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Shaun Hill has spent the past four years in Detroit, mostly as the backup to starter Matthew Stafford, but when he has gotten in the game, he has done well.

In his career, the Parsons, Kan., native has completed 591 of 954 passes for 6,381 yards, 41 touchdowns and 23 interceptions between his time in Minnesota (he didn't play there), San Francisco and the Lions.

Now 33 years old, the Maryland product sat down to discuss his adventures in New Zealand, his senior year of college and, with the help of Stafford, why he wouldn't vacation in New York City that often.

What’s your favorite football memory?

[+] EnlargeShaun Hill
AP Photo/Scott BoehmLions backup QB Shaun Hill isn't ready for a second career in farming.
Shaun Hill: Oh man. That’s so hard to say. Favorite football memory? I don’t know, that’s impossible to say. That’s hard to say. Gosh. I don’t know. Give me one section of my football life.

Pros?

SH: That’s the hardest one.

Colleges then?

SH: Okay, we’ll do college then. College was winning the ACC outright and qualifying for the Orange Bowl, that whole experience.

Why that?

SH: We were picked to finish seventh in the conference that year, preseason, and I remember distinctly having a meeting with a new head coach as he came in that spring and he said to me, and I’m going into my senior year, he says, ‘Hey, we’re not going to be any good this year anyway so if you just don’t completely just beat out these young guys during training camp, I’m going to play one of the young guys throughout the season.’ Then we went ahead and won the ACC.

Was that Ralph Friedgen?

SH: Friedgen, yeah.

Were you like what the heck?

SH: Yeah, like, ‘all right, that’s fun.’

You’re a veteran in the league now, what do you do away from the NFL?

SH: During the offseason I go home and, man, I don’t know. Just kind of do a lot of fishing. Do a lot of work on my river property and the little farm I have.

You grow anything? Crops?

SH: No, because I can’t take care of them all the time, but I’m ready for that. Just all that stuff for getting ready to do that eventually, yeah.

What are you eventually planning on growing? Wheat? Corn? Tomatoes?

SH: No, no. More just have my own garden and just have fresh food for my wife and my family. No, I wouldn’t be an actual crop farmer.

So that’s not your second career?

SH: No, no. Nuh-uh. I mess around doing that stuff. And my wife and I like to take a vacation every year.

(Read full post)

Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With..."

Previous Ten (ish) Questions subjects: TE Brandon Pettigrew; DT Justin Bannan; WR Kris Durham; C Dominic Raiola

Wide receiver Kevin Ogletree is one of the newest Lions, having signed with the team a week ago after being released from Tampa Bay.

It’s been a lot of change for Ogletree over the past year, going from Dallas to Tampa Bay and now to Detroit, but as you’ll learn in this week’s Ten(ish) Questions, it might have been harder on another member of his family.

Ogletree had two catches for 20 yards in his first game with Detroit and we caught up with him to chat about the smell of football and how his dog helped with a formation.

We’ll start with a football question: What’s your favorite football memory, high school, college, pro?

Kevin Ogletree: My favorite moment ever, that first time playing football in pads as a kid. The smell, everything was so brand new to me. It was like finding something you love to do, it was a passion I didn’t know about. That was probably the most.

How old were you?

[+] EnlargeKevin Ogletree
Harry How/Getty ImagesKevin Ogletree had two catches for 20 yards in his Lions debut.
KO: 11. 10 years old.

So smell, what would that be?

KO: It’s a football smell, man. It’s a good smell. But it’s like the grass. It’s the sweat. It’s the helmets. It’s pretty disgusting. But it’s definitely a part of it.

When you look away from football, what’s the one thing that gets you going?

KO: I’m a pet owner. I love my dog. I have an English Bulldog who just keeps me smiling and happy all the time. But he’s not here now so it’s like, study your playbook. It was kind of helpful.

Male? Female?

KO: He’s a boy. He’s going to be four years old. His name is Beans.

Beans?

KO: Well, Beans is his last name. His first name is Cluster because early on in Dallas, I had a problem with that formation, it was a cluster bunch formation so I named my dog Cluster so I could remember that formation. It never gave me a problem after that.

That might be the oddest way to name a pet ever.

KO: Yeah, but it helped me. And I’m serious about that. It was a formation that was giving me trouble. Once I named my dog that, I never had to think about it again. I know exactly where I’m at.

(Read full post)

Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look at their lives on and off the field in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions With..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions subjects: TE Brandon Pettigrew; DT Justin Bannan (now released); WR Kris Durham

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- When kicker Jason Hanson retired after last season, center Dominic Raiola became the longest-tenured Detroit Lion.

[+] EnlargeDominic Raiola
AP Photo/Joe RobbinsDominic Raiola has been the Lions' starting center since 2001.
He's been a stalwart in the middle of the offensive line for Detroit since the middle of the 2001 season after being drafted in the second round out of Nebraska, where he won the Rimington Trophy.

We caught up with Raiola to chat about being in Detroit for a long time -- and one of his other interests, professional wrestling.

You’ve been here for a long time. Does that register at all, how long you’ve been at one spot?

Dominic Raiola: It was, but this year I kind of reinvented myself, so it’s kind of like all brand new to me this year. Which is a good thing, you know. You stop and think, I’m 34. In the NFL, that’s old. But I feel great. I don’t ever stop and think, I just know it’s a different year and I feel different about it. Everything about it.

You reinvent yourself, is that off the field, too, or just on the field?

DR: Every aspect, daily. Football’s always been my life, but I make it more of my life. I don’t know how I could take it to another level, but I did, and it’s working. I feel way better on the field.

Usually when you get to 32, 33, 34, maybe the job becomes less of life than family and other things. Is that weird for you to go opposite?

DR: I just try to soak it all in, really. And that’s just part of it. I’m trying to suck the life out of my profession, and with that I’ve become a better player. I don’t know what it is, but I’m going to keep churning.

Away from football, what’s your favorite thing to do? What’s your hobby?

DR: I’m an avid golfer. My kids are getting bigger, and I like to sit at their practices and watch.

Golf yet?

DR: No, not golf. My son plays football, my daughter plays volleyball. That’s my down time. I’m getting older, I’m in bed at 9:30, 10 o’clock and I’m up at 5. When I get here at 5, that’s when I start sucking the life out of my profession, out of this sport.

I know wrestling is a thing for you? Did that start when you were like 10?

DR: You’re talking WWF?

Yeah.

DR: Oh, it’s back in the day. I think I was 6, like 5, 6. I used to watch the WWF cartoon and kept it going. I knew it wasn’t real.

When did you realize it wasn’t real? For me, it was like when I was 11.

DR: Like 12, 13, maybe. Then you look back, you watch it now and some of the stuff they do does hurt. Some of it is real. But they don’t hate each other, all that stuff. It’s just a storyline. So that’s why I watch it now. It’s like reality TV. It’s a storyline.

Who was your favorite wrestler growing up?

DR: Pssh. Growing up, oh man, I used to love Ted DiBiase, the Million Dollar Man.

[+] EnlargeTed DiBiase
Rick Scuteri/AP Images/WWEDominic Raiola was a fan of Ted DiBiase and the way he toyed with opponents.
Is that just because of the awesome belt?

DR: Yeah that, and I used to like how he just used to belittle people. That was my favorite. He used to ask you to do 30 pushups, you’d do 29 and he’d kick your hand away or bounce a ball off you.

Did you want to be him as a kid, maybe when you thought he was real?

DR: You know what, he was maybe my second favorite. Ric Flair had to be my favorite. I’ve got him right there (points into his locker, where there is a Ric Flair action figure). He’s been there for three years now. Wooooo.

When did you get it?

DR: A few years ago.

Did you buy it? Did someone give it to you?

DR: Somebody gave it to me. I forgot who gave it to me.

Is this now something you’ve passed on to your kids? Are they into it?

DR: My boys are. I just watch it with them. It’s one more thing we can do together.
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look into their lives on the field and off in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions with ..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions: Tight end Brandon Pettigrew, defensive tackle Justin Bannan

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Kris Durham is a proud Georgian, went to Georgia, has fond memories of the state and is having a bit of a problem picking a baseball team to root for lately.

The wide receiver is in his second season with the Lions after being drafted by Seattle in 2011. He has two catches for 44 yards this season. We caught up with him to chat about life, baseball and the Hunger Games.

What’s your favorite football memory?

Kris Durham: My favorite football memory to date? There’s a few. It depends on college, high school, pro. Probably the most is when I had a touchdown against Georgia Tech on senior night my senior year in college. My entire family was there. It was the only game I was able to get every single person in my family to come to.

Going more personal now, your brother-in-law, Blake Wood, is a pitcher for the Indians. Did you almost have to become an Indians fan?

KD: I do. When they play the Tigers I root for the Tigers and when he’s in, I hope he does his thing.

Wait, what did the Braves do to you?

KD: The Braves are my team, now.

So why the Tigers and Indians?

KD: Same division. The Braves, if it came down to the Tigers and Braves in the World Series, I would be very... it would be a good problem to have, I’ll just put it at that. I grew up a Braves fan, been a Braves fan my entire life. Went to Opening Day, been to a lot of games.

(His sister met her husband in college). Were you like, you’re dating an athlete?

KD: Uhh, well, my sister is actually the smart one. She has a pharmacy degree, so she’s technically the doctor.

Are your parents annoyed at that?

KD: I think they are all right. They have a son-in-law who is a pitcher, a daughter who has a doctorate and I play in the NFL. I feel bad for my nephew, that guy has to live up to a lot.

What’s he do?

KD: He’s like 1. His mom’s a pharmacist, his dad plays in the MLB and his uncle plays in the NFL. My uncle played football at Clemson. My dad did the decathlon and was an All-SEC decathlete.

So if he isn’t good at sports then, he’s in trouble?

KD: He better be good at golf or really smart. That’s what I’m saying.

What’s your pre-game ritual?

KD: I like to get to the stadium early and I like to look through a little bit of film. Take my time getting ready. I like to not be in a rush. When I’m in a rush I feel like I’m in a rush to go warm up and a rush to go do this and it throws me off. The only real ritual I have is I like to get there three hours before the game starts.

That’s pretty early. For a 1 p.m. game when do you get up?

KD: Probably 8 or 8:30, have some breakfast and then drive over to the stadium around 10, 10:30 from the hotel.

What’s the quirkiest thing about you? The one thing people don’t know about you.

KD: I like to read a lot, but that’s not really quirky. I read a lot of different stuff. I go from religion books to almost suspense thrillers. I even read the Hunger Games trilogy because I saw the first movie and thought it was interesting.

Isn’t that young adult fiction?

KD: Yeah, but I liked the first movie so went ahead and read the books. But quirky, I used to race BMX. I was ranked in the Top 15 in my age group when I was like 12.

Why did you stop?

KD: I outgrew my bike. And I started get into football and basketball a little more. I was in middle school, so I didn’t have to focus on one sport. I could just do that.

You could have gotten a bigger bike.

KD: I did, but it was like, I was just kind of like, ‘It was fun.’ I rode from the time I was in third, fourth grade until seventh grade.

Coolest place you raced?

KD: I raced all over the US. California, Nevada, New York, Georgia, Florida.

Baja?

KD: No, Minnesota. Just all over.

You miss it?

KD: No, not really. When I first stopped, I did, but I kind of filled that void with baseball, football, basketball, that stuff.

If you ended up not playing football, what would you have done?

KD: I have a degree in teaching, so I would be doing teaching and coaching. I am certified to teach history in the state of Georgia. And I could take the test. I also studied science, so I could teach science as well.

How would that go for you?

KD: Kids seemed to like me when I did my student teaching, so I guess it’d be all right. I prefer what I do, but I did enjoy it.
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look into their lives off the field on Sundays in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions with ..."

Previous Ten(ish) Questions with... TE Brandon Pettigrew

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Defensive tackle Justin Bannan is one of the newer Detroit Lions, having signed a one-year deal with the team in August. This is his fifth stop in the NFL, a journey that started when he was a fifth-round draft pick in 2002. He's been to Buffalo, Baltimore, Denver, St. Louis, Denver again and now Detroit.

He has played in 162 games in his career, making 313 tackles and 6.5 sacks while forcing six fumbles. We caught up with Bannan earlier this week to chat about going to Red Rocks, skiing and beating Nebraska.

What’s your favorite football memory, not even NFL but your whole career?

Justin Bannan: Beating Nebraska my last home game my senior year at Colorado. We hung 62 points on them and it was my last game I ever played at CU. That was my senior year. It was a good way to go out, last game being played at CU, at least home game.

You’ve bounced around a few different places. What’s the NFL experience been like?

JB: It’s been a wild ride. Been a roller coaster. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world, but it is definitely a challenging world. But it’s all I know so I wouldn’t trade it, you know.

What do you like to do most away from football, when you’re not playing?

JB: Um, just relaxing, hanging out with my family. Skiing, golfing, fishing, all of that stuff.

Are you particularly good at any of those last three things?

JB: Not really. But I like to do ‘em.

How’d you get involved with those things? Is that just from living in Colorado?

JB: Yeah, I kind of grew up skiing, so I like that. Grew up in the Sierras in Northern California. So grew up an hour from Tahoe. So I grew up fishing and outdoors. Since I’ve been in the NFL I’ve taken up golf, so I like that.

Skiing for you, you’re a bigger guy, how does that go? Is that more challenging?

JB: I just enjoy the experience. It’s not like I’m going down double black diamonds. I take it easy and I just like to get out there and ski.

What’s your pregame ritual? Do you have one?

JB: No. You have a system, but it’s not worth going over right now trying to explain to you.

As far as music goes, what’s your favorite artist? What do you listen to?

JB: I like all kinds. So, it’s just got to be good. That’s all.

So what entails good to you?

JB: Old school country. I like rock and roll, classic rock. A little bit of everything on top of that.

What’s the last concert you went to?

JB: Steve Miller Band at Red Rocks. Just a couple months ago.

That must have been awesome.

JB: Yeah. I go to Red Rocks concerts all the time. Not far from the house. I’ve seen a lot of concerts there.

How many?

JB: Probably 10.

Best venue in the country?

JB: Yes. By far. I do. It’s probably the coolest place to go see a concert.
Each week during the season, we'll chat with a different Detroit Lions player or coach for a look into their lives besides what you see on the field on Sundays in a feature called "Ten(ish) Questions with..." This week's installment is tight end Brandon Pettigrew.

ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- In the five years Pettigrew has been with Detroit, he has started all but three games he has played in after being selected in the first round of the 2009 draft by the Lions out of Oklahoma State.

Lions coach Jim Schwartz likes Pettigrew's ability to block as a tight end -- he lines up on the line a good amount -- but he is also an able pass-catcher. In his career, he has caught 245 passes for 2,418 yards and 14 touchdowns. He's also fumbled six times, losing three.

We caught up with Pettigrew earlier this week to chat about everything but his time with Detroit.

What’s your favorite football memory?

Brandon Pettigrew: Man, I’ve got a lot. My rookie year, me and Matt (Stafford), we won the Cleveland game in the last minute. That sticks out, more than anything.

Not even just here, but back to high school, college?

BP: Probably college, junior year against Texas Tech. Game-winning touchdown I had.

Do you remember the play still?

BP: It was just a stick route. Just took it like 50 yards, broke a couple of tackles and went like 50. (Eds. note: The play was actually a 54-yard touchdown from Zac Robinson to Pettigrew with 1:37 left in the fourth quarter. Oklahoma State won the game, 49-45.)

You think you’d score when you caught it?

BP: No, there was traffic. I had a guy on me. There was another guy in front of me. I had to make some plays to get there. I didn’t think I was going to get a touchdown. I don’t think they called for it to be a touchdown play. I mean, every play is designed like that but I don’t think it was.

What do you like to do away from football?

BP: Be with my family, my wife and my daughter. Yeah.

How long have you been married?

BP: August. A little over a month now. Yeah.

How’s newlywed life? A lot different?

BP: Yeah, the marriage, the official thing is. But we’ve been together for a while. So I’m happy. I’m used to it.

Besides family, do you have any hobbies?

BP: I like to hang out for the most part. Friends. I love to go bowling.

You any good?

BP: I’m decent. I’m decent at bowling. Like shooting basketball. Pretty normal, man. Nothing too much out of the ordinary.

There’s the lacrosse thing. (Eds. note: In an earlier conversation, Pettigrew mentioned he really likes lacrosse)

BP: I like lacrosse. I never actually played lacrosse but I like it.

How’d you get into that?

BP: Me and my college roommate, we just happened to be in a dorm room and didn’t have nothing to do and we were just flipping channels and we just started watching it. It just kind of caught our eye. We were watching Syracuse and Virginia. 2007.

What stood out about it?

BP: Just the physicalness and the technique of it. Just see guys shake around and like the crazy shots, just the angles of the shots having to be made. It looks fun.

They didn’t have that in Texas (where Pettigrew grew up), at least when you were in high school. Would you have played?

BP: Possibly. I probably would have.

Would you have been good?

BP: I don’t know if I would have been good at it but I could have given it a shot, you know.

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