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NFL Draft Diamonds Prospect Interview: Rodney Jackson, DE, Grambling State University

Rodney Jackson is a big boy who is hoping to make an impact on Sunday

  • Name: Rodney Jackson 
  • Height: 6’0
  • Weight: 285
  • Position: D-End/D-Tackle
  • College: Grambling State University 
  • Twitter: @iamkingsupah

Tell us about your hometown, and what you love most about it?

  • I’m from a small town in Louisiana called Bastrop. It’s kind of like crabs in a bucket there. Everybody’s scratching and clawing to make it out. I love it there because it helped make me tough. It’s rough there. Its a place that makes a man out of you. 

List these three in order of importance and why: Film Study, Strength and Conditioning and Practice?

  • For me I’d say strength and conditioning is first. I mean that’s where it all starts , the weight room. The off-season is where you get stronger and prepare your body for the season. Second, I got to go film study. Having that great knowledge of your opponent slows the game down tremendously and makes everything easier to see. You get to see tendencies, what they’re really good at, as well as what they don’t do so well. Thirdly I got practice. It’s just as important as the first two, but if you handle the first two accordingly, then practice is easy. 

What do you worry about, and why?

  • I tend not to worry a lot. And that’s what worries me at times. I thoroughly analyze every situation I’m in over an over, putting myself in different situations. Predicting different outcomes. So I’m not shocked at anything thrown at me. Sometimes I ask myself should I be worried ore than I am ? 

Give me an example of when you failed at something. How did you react and how did you overcome failure?

  • Most memorable failure was not being able to lead my high school team to a championship. Football is really all you have there, while failing tends to come in amplitude. So being upset in the first round, I took it pretty hard. I didn’t let it break me. I used it in my favor and it added a purpose to my life. 

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

  • Probably my strength. I take pride in being the strongest guy in the room or on the field. 

Who is the best player you have ever played against in college?

  • Ever ? That’s tough. I’ve played against some NFL caliber players. But my top 4 would be Ashari Goins (Neville High school/Mcneese St), Brandon Parker (North Carolina A&T/ Oakland Raiders) Trent Scott (Grambling St/ Los Angeles Chargers) & Tytus Howard (Alabama St.)

What would your career be if you couldn’t play football? 

  • I’d probably be a regular guy still in Bastrop. Football has taken me places I’d never have dreamed of. 

Room, desk, and car – which do you clean first?

  • Desk. Got to start small and work your way to the bigger things 

If there was a disaster and you could either save three strangers or one family member, which would you choose and why?

  • Probably whoever needed help most or who needed help first. If the stranger was in more need of help I couldn’t skip them for a relative. Everyone is family in a sense. 

If you could be any television or movie character, who would you be and why?

  • My self. Does me being on Last Chance U count for anything? I thought I was pretty funny lol

Tell me about your biggest adversity in life and how you’ve dealt with or overcome it?

  • When my grandmother died I took it pretty hard. It was the day before a game and I had to play through it. When you lose someone who had a significant amount of influence over your life, that’s not just something you can shake off. But the thing about life is, it doesn’t stop, for anybody. So I had to keep going. She would have wanted me to. 

What is your most embarrassing moment?

  • I don’t think I have one to be honest. I don’t really get embarrassed 

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

  • I had a lot of them my senior year, but probably the sack I got in the bayou classic my junior year in New Orleans. As a Louisiana native, you dream of playing in the super dome for the state championship. So just get that sack and hear a roaring 67,000+ crowd go crazy, and looking up to celebrate and seeing my face on the big screen was amazing. 

What song best describes your work ethic?

  • King Supah – Save Me From Me

What is the most important trait you can have (Physical or Non-Physical) to help you succeed at the next level? 

  • Persistence 

If you could bring one person back from the dead for one day, who would it be and why?

  • Lil Snupe. He was just a kid. He had a bright future and was putting zone 4 on the map. 

If you were to open a dance club, what would you name it? 

  • Probably Dèja Vu 

Who is the most overrated player in the NFL? 

  • I honestly don’t think anybody is overrated in the League. If they’re there, they must be doing SOMETHING right. So I take absolutely nothing away from them because there are so many that’ll never come close to having that opportunity. 

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

  • I NEVER wanted to be liked. Just respected. You can like someone I’d they’re nice to you, and then take it back if they’re mean. But respect is ground work. It’s time put in that nobody can take away. 

What player who had his career derailed by off-field issues do you feel for the most and why?

  • Marcus Lattimore. I don’t know it’s just when you watching all the highlights and hype videos of him. He was the best running back in all of college football. Then the two gruesome knee injuries. He could never recover. Then you get your hopes up because he gets taken in the 4th by the 49ers. Just to never take off and eventually retire. It sucks, but unfortunately that’s part of the game 

Do you love to win, or hate to lose?

  • I hate to lose so much that it makes it all the more special when I win. But I don’t take losses, just lessons. 

Who has been the biggest influence on your life and explain why?

  • My grandmother. She’s my “why”. She’s my drive. She’s why I do what I do. Just to put a smile on her face, though she’d be happy with whatever I chose to do. I just want her in a better situation and I’m willing to do whatever to make sure that happens. She saved me. I owe her everything. 

NFL Draft Diamonds was created to assist the underdogs playing the sport. We call them diamonds in the rough. My name is Damond Talbot, I have worked extremely hard to help hundreds of small school players over the past several years, and will continue my mission. We have several contributors on this site, and if they contribute their name and contact will be in the piece above. You can email me at [email protected]

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