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2020 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Jackson Davis, TE, Portland State University

Jackson Davis (93) the tight end from Portland State recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot.
  • Name: Jackson Davis
  • Height: 6010
  • Weight: 245
  • Position: TE/H-Back/Fullback
  • College: Portland State University
  • Twitter: @Mr_Incredible__

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

• I’m from Portland, Oregon. One of the things I love most about Portland is the number of trees and greenery you can find almost anywhere in the city. Another thing is the fact that if there’s a type of food you like, there’s probably a food cart for it, I’m very fortunate to have access to something in a close vicinity like that.

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

•  I would say first and foremost, film study seems to be the most important, at least at the college level and onward. I say this because in order to understand how to practice to play another opponent, you need to know how they will play against you. After that, you can practice effectively enough to where you work in conditioning while at the same time practicing. Finally, keeping up your body during season is one of the most important things as well. This is probably a question that’s pretty debatable, but that’s what I think about it.

What do you worry about, and why?

•  I don’t particularly worry all that much, but when I have too much time to think I worry about making sure I can put food on the table in the future for my family. I think I worry about stuff like this because it’s so far in the future at this point, all I can do is wonder about it. I’m pretty good at moving forward so I don’t worry all that much.

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

• When I was coming out of junior college, I did not exactly get the scholarship offers that I wanted. At that time, I did consider that a failure and even now, I feel at that point I had failed to get what I had worked for. Yet, I found myself an opportunity at Portland State and after taking a year in residence, I found my way onto the field and in a significant role on our offense. I worked my tail off and actively searched for ways to get better, and eventually I reaped the rewards of just continuing to lower my head and keep moving forward.

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

• My teammates would probably say that my best quality would be my work ethic and the fact that I work so hard to get what I achieve.

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

• The best player that I have ever played against would probably be number seven, Charles Akanno from The University of Idaho. He was quick, explosive, and had a way of knowing where the ball was going at all times. He got the better of me at times, and at others I handled my business with him.

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

•  If I wasn’t playing football right now, I would say that my career would probably be to coach football at the collegiate level. I thoroughly enjoy helping other people, but I also love football. I feel I am very good at understanding how to get things across to people while at the same time being able to game plan against potential opponents.

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

• I would clean my room first, then my desk, and then my car. Firstly because I feel that you should have a clean area where you lay your head. Secondly, you should have a clean desk so you have a clean space to do your work that needs done. That is one of the places you will spend a lot of your time. Lastly, I say you should clean your car last because to me, it is simply a tool to get you from point A to point B.

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

• If I had to either save three strangers or one family member, I would originally try to sacrifice myself to save both parties, but if that wasn’t an option, I would probably save the three people. I would say this because knowing my family members, they would probably want me to save the three people and they would understand the situation we would be in.

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

• I would probably be Goku from the DragonBall franchise because he is not only a very powerful character, but he is always working to get stronger and search for others to help make himself stronger. He is very strong willed and loves fighting other opponents in order to both test his skills and become stronger.

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

•  The biggest adversity I have probably had to overcome was after suffering a season ending injury my junior year of college. Following this, I decided to transfer back to a school closer to home and eventually managed to get into Portland State after working so hard to get medically cleared and work through getting my eligibility back. After getting cleared and allowed onto the team, I faced having to fight for my eligibility to play that year with the NCAA. I unfortunately had to sit out that year, but I made the most out of the year that I had to sit out and I am proud of that.

What is your most embarrassing moment?

•  One of the most embarrassing moments of my life has got to be from when I was a sophomore in high school playing in a JV game. I was playing linebacker and was chasing down a sweep to the right when I got blindside blocked straight to my back. I got the wind knocked out of me and continued to make very loud noises that I couldn’t control. It was something my body was just producing on its own in order to get the air back in my lungs. Looking back on it, it is pretty funny and my friends from high school still manage to bug me about it from time to time in order to get a good laugh.

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

•  The most memorable play of my college career is one that won’t be remembered by a whole lot of people, but it is special to me. It was my first official reception for Portland State University against the University of Idaho, and it was a simple flat pass for 10 yards. Yet, the hard work and grind that it took to even get the opportunity to get to that point and get back to doing what I loved, made that moment all the more special for me with all of my teammates cheering on the sidelines so loud I couldn’t believe it.

What song best describes your work ethic?

• The song that describes my work ethic would have to be Heart of A Champion by Nelly. It may be a bit cheesy, but I really do pride myself in failing to ever give up on what I want and working until I get to an opportunity, I can succeed in. This song is definitely in my game day rotation.

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

• I’m going to sound repetitive, and possibly even biased, but I truly do feel the best quality you can have in both football and life is having a champion level work ethic. The human body will allow us to do whatever we push ourselves to do and I wholeheartedly believe that. We are only limited to what we limit ourselves by.

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

• If I could bring anybody back from the dead for one day, I would bring back my grandma who passed away when I was 5. I only have a few memories of her, and I would love for a chance to see and talk to her again and tell her about the things that have happened in my life.

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

• If I was to open a dance club, I would probably give it a name like DNA or something vague like that that can appeal to a broad and general audience and didn’t seem tacky.

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL? 

• I feel like the most underrated player in the NFL is Roosevelt Nix of the Pittsburg Steelers. He does his job and I feel he does it well. He went undrafted and whenever I hear people talk about modern fullbacks, who are already under-appreciated, he doesn’t seem to come up a lot of the time. He has been a big inspiration for how I try to play the game and I hope I could have a chance to learn from him some day.

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

•  I would rather be respected than liked, because whether or not someone likes you really doesn’t matter, but if they respect you, then they will listen to what you have to say. I want to coach in the future and I feel this philosophy is most important when gathering a group of players that you can be real and straightforward with, and they’ll give their all for you. If they respect you, they will want to play for you. The same goes if you are a leader on the team, not everyone has to like you, but they better respect you

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

•  A player that I feel most for that has had his career derailed because of off-field issues would probably have to be Vince Young who had a very strong worded argument with his coach at Tennessee when he was playing for the Titans following a hard OT loss. I wish he could’ve rebounded better than only having one other season following this on an active NFL roster because he could’ve been great.

Do you love to win, or hate to lose?

• I absolutely hate to lose more than anything. Don’t get me wrong, I love to win, but when that’s done, I move on to the next phase of what needs to be done. Losses, they hurt, after a day or so you get past it.

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

•The biggest influence in my life to this point would have to be my mother. She has been my rock and always supported me in all my football endeavors and never wavered in her belief in me and what I can accomplish. She kept me fighting and allowed me to get to this place that I am today. I can’t thank her enough and I just want her to know I love her more than anything.

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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