The 2013 NFL Draft is fast approaching, and players are starting to take private visits and workouts with NFL teams as GMs and coaches finalize their boards.
One player who is shooting up draft boards is New Mexico defensive back Freddy Young Jr., who became a full-time starter as a senior in 2012. Young is the son of former NFL linebacker Fredd Young, who played for the Colts and Seahawks.
We at NFL Mocks had the chance to talk to Young less than two weeks before the biggest day in the next chapter of his life, as he gets ready to move to a new city and begin his journey as a prospective NFL player.
Young made a huge splash at his recent pro day, where he caught the attention of NFL teams by running a 4.50 second 40 yard dash and posting a 39.5-inch vertical leap, as well as 19 reps on the bench press at 6’1″ 210 pounds. His combination of size, speed, and athletic ability has really caught the attention of NFL scouts. Here is what Young had to say as he begins his journey to the NFL.
What has the whole draft process been like for you?
“It’s been crazy. Pretty amazing. It’s definitely something I’ve been dreaming about my whole life. Having NFL teams look at me and call me–it’s pretty crazy.”
Who has been the biggest role model in your football career?
“To be honest with you, it’s always just been something that I’ve known I wanted to do. My father played eight years in the NFL with the Seahawks and Colts. Even out of the womb I’ve wanted to follow his footsteps and play in the NFL.”
What are you going to bring to an NFL team?
“I will definitely say the biggest plus is my versatility. I’ve played some cornerback, free safety, strong safety, and I can bring an impact on special teams. I can do a lot of things that can help the team out.”
What have you been doing to prepare for the draft?
“I’ve been training at the University of New Mexico with our strength and conditioning coach. He’s really been investing a lot of time in me. Right now I’m working out twice a day, and just working as hard as I can.”
Your pro day performance really turned a lot of heads. Do you feel that elevated your stock?
“Most definitely. I’ve had workouts with the Broncos, Bears, Raiders, Texans, Packers, and Bills, and they were all in attendance at my pro day as well. I think I really opened some eyes. All of those numbers would have been in the top five at the Scouting Combine. Teams have given me a lot of positive feedback.”
Are there any NFL players you’ve been compared to or would compare yourself to?
“Well, it’s really hard to do that since they are already at that level. I’ve had some scouts compare me to Nnamdi Asomugha because of his size and versatility. He came into the league as a safety and moved to cornerback, and we are both about 6’1″, and I can also play both cornerback and safety.”
Did you have a favorite NFL team growing up?
“When I was a kid, my dad was really good friends with Eric Dickerson, so I followed the Rams pretty closely when I was a kid especially since I thought that I wanted to be a running back when I grew up.”
What would it mean to you to be drafted?
“Words can’t describe. It’s something like I said that I’ve always dreamed of. It would be such a great privilege and opportunity to show the world what I’ve been working my whole life to do. I would take great pride in whatever team picked me up.”
Have you been told where you are projected to be drafted?
“I went to the Scouting Bureau, where they told me I’m most likely to be a late-round or priority free agent. Whether I’m a late rounder or priority free agent, I’m going to give 100 percent.”
Who is the toughest player you played against in college?
“I had the privilege of playing against Doug Martin from Boise State. He’s really hard to tackle, and an amazing running back. As a whole, we played a lot of really tough teams not only within our conference. We also played teams like Oregon, Texas, Arkansas–so I played some tough players.”
Who are you most looking forward to going against in the NFL?
“It will be a privilege to play against any of those guys, you know the Calvin Johnson’s, Victor Cruz’s–just an honor to be on the field with them.”
Big thanks to Freddy for taking some time out of his schedule to talk with NFL Mocks. We wish him the best in the future, and can’t wait to see where his NFL career takes him!
Make sure you follow Freddy on Twitter @FreddyYoungJr