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2021 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Noah Curtis, DE, Florida International

Noah Curtis is a high motor DE out of Florida International that participated in this year’s Hula Bowl and Tropical Bowl. He recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds writer Jimmy Williams.
  • Name: Noah Curtis
  • Height: 6’5”
  • Weight: 253 lbs
  • Position: DE/LB
  • College: Florida International University
  • Twitter: @Showtime_Noah90
  • Instagram: Showtime_Noah90

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 FIU as a freshman, my major was Communications. I switched my major to Criminal Justice my sophomore year. I recently graduated just this past December with a Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice. I’ve always had interest in Law Enforcement.

I was able to participate in FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes), and I also volunteered in a community project and fed the homeless.

What do your teammates say is your best quality?
My teammates love the energy and the motor that I bring to every practice, lift and game. I bring the juice everyday and try to motivate my teammates

What kind of role do you see yourself in on the team? What scheme and/or position suits your skill set?
I’m a team first kind of player whether that be as a starter, rotational player or special teams contributor. I tend to lead by example and want to also be vocal with my teammates.

I can play in both a 4-3 and 3-4 scheme. I didn’t drop back into coverage too much at FIU, but I have had experience doing that going back to high school. I’ve lined up at different spots on the field playing a 5 or 6i in 11 team personnel, wide 9 in obvious pass situations or even standing up in a 3-4.

Who is the best player you have ever played against in college?
QB Asher O’Hara recently transferred from Middle Tennessee. I played against him for 3 years, and he definitely gained my respect. He’s a shifty runner and throws the ball really well.

Which one of your teammates impresses you the most?
Sterling Palmer is one of the teammates that impresses me the most. He came into the team as a wide receiver and was moved to tight end. As a freshman he really grinded and put forth a lot of effort to gain strength and learn the position.

Describe a time in your life when you were able to overcome a struggle.
Most people don’t understand the struggles of a college athlete and what goes on in their life on a regular basis. Sometimes it really tests a player and his mental health. My junior year, I had to overcome a lot. There were some outside influences that affected me badly. I was hurt by some of the rumors people had said. Ultimately, I had to take a stand and cut those people out of my life. I had to take a 180 degree turn and strive forward. Since then, I’ve been grinding hard everyday pushing through all the obstacles before me and playing hard on the field.

If you didn’t play football, what other sport would you play?
In high school, I played a lot of basketball. I had been doing that ever since I was little. I did one year of track doing some of the field events like high jump, shot put and discus. Yet, to answer the question, I never played baseball and always wanted to.

What is something that you are most proud of? What would you say is your biggest achievement?
I’m really proud that I was able to earn a scholarship that helped pay the way for me to earn my degree. Getting that Bachelor’s is one of my highest achievements. I’m also engaged to be married and very happy to have my fiancee in my life.

Some of the accomplishments that I was able to achieve in football include several minions on conference team lists. I also won the FIU Comeback Player of the Year in 2018 after coming back from a shoulder injury that took 8 months of recovery. Additionally, I was named team captain this past season. I am honored to be one of the leaders of our team. I was also a 3-time member of the team’s Leadership Council.

Describe one of the most memorable plays of your collegiate career.
One of the most memorable moments of my career was back in 2019 when we played against Miami. We were playing on the Florida Marlins baseball field. That game against Miami felt almost like an away game. Coming out of the tunnel with all the fog going on we received a bunch of “boos”. Yet, as soon as the kickoff happened, we were all playing the best that we ever had. All three phases of the game seemed to be working. We ultimately won that game which obviously was a huge upset. It was such a special game because it was the first time that we beat a Power 5 opponent. It was also nice because Coach Davis formerly coached for the Hurricanes, and we were able to help get him that victory.

Do you have a favorite athlete or professional team? Is there a player that you model your game after?
I’m a big Yankees fan. My favorite football player is Myles Garrett. Some of my coaches say that I play like him and run the same way. He’s one of the best in the league, and I try to model my game after his.

Who is your favorite music artist? What gets you pumped before a game?
I like a lot of different kinds of music, but if I had to choose, being from Florida, I would have to say Kodak Black. Before games, one of the songs that I like to hear is Meek Mill’s “Dreams and Nightmares”.

What is your favorite comfort food?
Having a home-cooked meal is something that I like. Pork chops, rice & beans, and mac & cheese is one of my favorite meals. Before games, one of the snacks that I like is Sour Patch Kids. One of the local restaurants that I like is called Duffy’s Sports Bar. Give me a cheeseburger with some mushrooms and an egg from there, and I also like their brownie sundae for dessert.

Do you have a favorite movie, TV show or actor?
“I, Robot” with Will Smith is my favorite movie. Will Smith is definitely one of my favorite actors. One of my favorite TV shows right now is “Outer Banks” which is a show on Netflix.

What do you do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies? Any secret talents?
One of my hobbies and passions is cooking. I also like to read and go fishing. Recently, I’ve been learning how to play the piano.

Who or what motivates you the most?
My fiancee is my biggest inspiration. She’s my motivator and best friend. For all of my games, she writes notes to encourage me to dominate my opponents.

Another great motivator was our Strength Coach, Chad Smith. Whether it was on the practice field or workouts, he would always speak from the heart, and it showed how much he loved us. He showed such great emotion and how much the game really meant to him.

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