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2021 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Josh Pederson, TE, Louisiana-Monroe

Josh Pederson ULM NFL Draft Prospect
Josh Pederson has been a great target at tight end for the Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks. After establishing himself in the Sun Belt Conference, he’s now looking to transfer to another program. He recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds writer Jimmy Williams.
  • Name: Josh Pederson
  • Height: 6’5”
  • Weight: 237
  • Position: TE
  • College: University of Louisiana-Monroe
  • Twitter: @J2_P2
  • Instagram: @joshpederson

Talk about your experience as a student. What is your major/minor? Did you participate in any other activities or campus organizations other than football?
When I first came to school, my major was Construction Management, but I figured out very quickly that wasn’t for me. I changed my major to Kinesiology which suited me better. That major definitely translates well within sports. I graduated with my Bachelor’s May 2020. Outside of the classroom, I’ve participated with FCA. I’ve also volunteered with the Louisiana Children’s Home in Monroe, LA where we do activities with local families in need.

What do your teammates say is your best quality?
They would say that I’m easy going and a good teammate. I’m also considered one of the leaders.

What kind of role do you see yourself in on the team? What scheme and/or position suits your skill set?
I see myself as a leader that leads by example. People would say that I just do things the right way and have a good head on my shoulders. I’m not really a “Rah-Rah” get in your face kind of leader, but I’ll pull you aside and talk to a guy if I have to.

I’m a tight-end that’s usually flexed out and used as a pass catching receiver. You can count on me to make the big play in the Red Zone. As for scheme, I’m used to a spread offense where I’m used as a receiver off of play action and the R.P.O. game.

Who is the best player you have ever played against in college?
My freshman year, I played against Derwin James who’s considered one of the best safeties in the league. He was a ball hawk and all over the field. The best player that I played in the Sun Belt Conference was Akeem Davis-Gaither. He’s a very versatile player who was selected by the Bengals in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Which one of your teammates impresses you the most?
The teammate that impressed me the most was Derrick Gore. He came in from Alabama and really brought that winning mindset with him. He was the hardest working guy in our locker room. He taught me how to be better in practice and on the field.

Describe a time in your life when you were able to overcome a struggle.
The biggest struggle that I’ve had to overcome was during my redshirt freshman year. I had a stomach infection on top of mono. The doctors couldn’t find out what was wrong at first. I lost 30 lbs within 2 weeks because I couldn’t keep any food down. That made me miss fall camp, and I hardly played to begin that season. I finally started some games towards the later part of the season. It ended up taking me a few months to get my weight back to where it was before. 

If you didn’t play football, what other sport would you play?
Golf. I played basketball and baseball all through middle school; yet, golf has really been my best sport. I played golf all 4 years of high school and was a 3-time All-State Golfer.

What is something that you are most proud of? What would you say is your biggest achievement?
I’ve been able to get a few accolades during my time at ULM. I was first team All-Sun Belt in 2019 as well as Midseason All-American and an Honorable Mention Pro Football Focus All-American. I was also named to the Conference Team of the Week 4 times. With all those accolades, I think I’m most proud that I was able to come to ULM after only 2 years of high school ball and now I’m at the cusp of playing football at the next level.

Describe one of the most memorable plays of your collegiate career.
That Florida State game in 2019 was a very memorable moment. We couldn’t really get going in the first quarter and we were down 21-0. I caught a 33 yard TD pass from Caleb Evans which really started to get our momentum going. We fought our way back in that game and ended up going into overtime 38-38. We lost that game due to a failed extra point which is unfortunate, but we really gave it our all during that game and it showed.

Do you have a favorite athlete or professional team? Is there a player that you model your game after?
Well, my dad would be upset if I didn’t say the Philadelphia Eagles since he’s the head coach. My favorite athletes are Dustin Johnson and Justin Thomas who are pro golfers. My favorite football player is George Kittle. I model my game after Zach Ertz.

Who is your favorite music artist? What gets you pumped before a game?
Some of my favorite artists are Post Malone and Marshmellow. The atmosphere of the game gets me pumped, not necessarily the music.

What is your favorite comfort food?
The sushi at the Basil of Monroe is always very good. They have the best lettuce wrap.

Do you have a favorite movie, TV show or actor?
My favorite TV show is The Office. I like the Iron Man movie. Kevin Hart is one of my favorite actors.

What do you do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies? Any secret talents?
I love to hunt and fish. I’m usually in a duck blind or deer stand in my spare time. I’ll also play golf whenever I can. One of my secret talents is that I can do a rugby dropkick very well.

Who or what motivates you the most?
My family, specifically my brother Drew. He played high school and college football, but his career was ended due to injury. He really loved football and wanted to be out there, but it was taken from him. Ever since then, I realize that I shouldn’t take my opportunity for granted and play to the extent of my abilities because that’s what my brother would have done.

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