Hello, I am @jrberendzen on Twitter and this is one of my free agent interviews where I ask very deserving free agents questions about the players themselves and about what a team would get in these players. All of these players should get picked up by NFL, CFL, and XFL teams and get a shot at being a career football player. So I hope you all read this interview and follow Ryan’s journey on Twitter @R_Mueller44
1. What is your favorite workout?
“The Hill” in the Lowe’s Home improvement parking lot in Olathe, Kansas. No matter how good of shape I’m in it still beats me and challenges me. Keeps me humble & hungry for more. It’s open 24/7/365 and is always ready for me.
2. If you could hang out with any football player past or present for a day who and why?
Tom Brady- I would love to pick his brain. I think his career is so unique from his college days, draft day, back up role to getting a chance to play, battled season-ending injuries, back-back Super Bowl champion. He continues to be doubted year after year no matter what he accomplishes. And every year he proves them wrong. He’s a fighter.
3.As a former XFL player what is one thing that you can say you gained from playing there?
I was able to gain that taste back after being away from football for 3 years. It gave a window of opportunity for players like me. Now, I’m eager and hungrier than ever for the return of the league so I can prove to my future teammates what I’ve been working towards since the seasons ended. I’m in the best shape of my life right now.
4.What is your mindset when you are on the football field?
Simple. Go 110% every play, Run the play call to perfection with violence, and tell the guy across from you that you are gonna kick his a** all day today.
5.What are your favorite moments from your football life?
- Earning a scholarship after starting my career as a walk-on at Kansas State.
- Winning a Big 12 championship
- Being voted a team captain in college
- Going undrafted and getting a call from the Chargers to join them in training camp.
- Survived cuts and made the Chargers team
6.What are the keys to success on the football field?
Preparation but to me it’s deeper than that
I always keep this in the back of my mind when I’m playing: Remember that the odds may not always be in your favor and the possibility might seem impossible at first glance but never doubt yourself or listen to the negative news that may come along the way. You can and will ALWAYS overcome any odds against you. Ride the highs and handle the lows. You don’t dare give up, you keep fighting and never let them win.
7. What made you decide you wanted to be a football player?
I fell in love with the training and preparation that all goes into being a football player. I enjoy the “process” of getting ready and being held accountable by my teammates to give them my best. I love that pressure.
8.Rank focus, footwork and skill based on what is most important to you as a football player and explain why?
Skill- you have to have it at the NFL level you can’t just “show up” skill is developed after hours and hours of working on your craft.
Focus- you have to be able to set aside everything in your life and sacrifice yourself for the betterment of your teammates. You have to be willing to give yourself up for them. You owe them your best and you do your teammates a disservice when you are not 100% locked in on football year-round.
Footwork- Football is a game of inches. It’s the difference between making the team and not, between winning and losing. It makes a huge difference.
9. What type of energy do you bring onto the football field?
I play with passion and wear my heart on my sleeve. If you are my teammate I let you know I’m here, I’m dead set on winning and giving you my best every play. I know the next day when I turn on the tape I’ll be damned to hear anyone say that I didn’t give them my best. That’s not up for debate ever.
10.What would a team get in a player like you?
A team would get a tremendous worker and a guy that would push his teammates to their fullest potential. I don’t shy away from the best. I hit it in the face. I welcome the challenges ahead and attack them. I’m not afraid of the big lights, big stage, and big names. I thrive off the challenge and enjoy competing.
11.What has been your biggest challenge in life?
Getting a real opportunity to show I belong in an NFL training camp.
12. What do you hope to achieve as a football player going forward?
Getting invited to an NFL training camp and show NFL teams what they have been missing. I’m hungrier now more than ever and I’m in the best shape of my life. I was a premier pass rusher coming out of college. I am a lot more polished now. I don’t believe there is a pass rusher coming out of college right now better than me. I’m healthy, I’m strong, I’ve put the work in. I’m the other guy “out there” that’s been busting his butt. I’m here to take the food off your plate and put it on mine. I’m here to take your job no need to sugarcoat it.
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