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2020 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Landan Word, LB, James Madison University

Landan Word the physical linebacker from James Madison University recently sat down with Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot
  • Name: Landan Word 
  • Height: 6’4
  • Weight: 235
  • Position: LB
  • College: James Madison University 
  • Twitter: @landanword1

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

• I am from Haymarket, Virginia a small town on the outskirts of rural Virginia. Haymarket is about 45 minutes from Washington D.C. making it easy to be close to the city but just far enough to get away from all of the noise. 

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

• Film Study (without a true knowledge of the game you cant play to your full potential. I was injured for the first half of my junior year with a broken collar bone, and it wasn’t the physicality that kept me locked in, it was the constant film study that put me where I needed to be when I returned.) Practice ( For me, the transition from film study, to getting physical reps on the field is where I see the most improvement. Learning from film and then getting to work on my craft I believe are the most important.) Strength and Conditioning ( This is also an important factor of my game but this is something that is usually required by the team. You can go above and beyond with film study to practice)

What do you worry about, and why?

• I worry about the way the media can effect a team. There have been times where I have seen how the media can create a division in the locker room. 

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

• When I first came to JMU I was trying to compete for a starting position. I lost, and it was hard for me coming from an FBS school to lose a starting spot that I thought was just going to be handed to me. It took me time to realize that I had to earn everything and once I realized that I was able to put my ego to the side and learn from the older guys who were ahead of me. I made sure that when my name was called on I could be trusted and that I was capable of making plays. 

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

• My natural athletic ability and physicality 

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

• Lamar Jackson 

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

• I would like to coach for a few years in hopes of one day opening up my own training facility for high school and college athletes. 

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

• Desk… I can’t get work done in cluttered spaces

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

• Family member. Family has always been the most important thing to me. They have always had my back and been with me through everything. 

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

• Spider-Man. Swinging around on webs and climbing up and down buildings is really bad ass

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

• Making the transfer from UVA to JMU was pretty hard for me. I received a lot of backlash from the fans, leaving my father’s alma mater, leaving close friends and family as well as coming into a new place on my own where I didn’t know anybody was challenging for my psyche. But I always knew in the back of my mind that it was the right decision and that it would all eventually pay off. 

What is your most embarrassing moment?

• Losing to our rival high school my senior year 

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

• My first career interception against Stony Brook. 

What song best describes your work ethic?

• Immortal (Trippie Redd) 

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

• The ability to not be complacent with your work I believe is the most important trait to succeed 

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

• My Grandfather. I never got to meet my dad’s father but I have heard all of the stories. That is one man that I would love to meet 

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

• L-Dub

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL? 

• Thomas Davis

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

• Respected. People look at you in a different way when you have earned their respect. I don’t need to be liked by everyone, but you know when someone respect’s you and when they don’t. 

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

• Josh Gordon. The amount of talent and potential that he had was absurd. But he just couldn’t get right off the field which is why I believe he never reached his full potential 

Do you love to win, or hate to lose?

• I love to win 

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

• My father. In school and sports he was always the one to give me advice from his own first-hand experience. When I was younger I never listened to what he said. It was hard for me to take criticism and life lessons from someone so close to me, but as I have grown older I have developed an understanding for everything that he has told me. Now that I have matured and grown I am able to take the things that he gave me, and still gives me and utilize them in my own fashion. 

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 nfldraftdiamonds@gmail.com

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