Ed Thompson: Where were you as you waited through draft weekend?
Key Dawson: It's a crazy story. Most of my family was at church
when it happened. I said I was going to stay at home and stay by the phone.
Something happened and our cable went out while I was at home, so I had to watch
the draft on my cell phone, just watching the updates the whole time. My dad got
in, he's a pastor at the church, and he had just gotten in when Coach Dungy
called me. It was a really exciting time and we got a chance to celebrate
and spend that time together.
ET: That's the best story I've heard so far. I can't believe you were just
sitting there with your cell phone...
KD: [laughs] Yeah, I didn't get to watch it, I didn't know anything. I
just watched the names, that's all I got to watch.
ET: Were the Colts the first team you heard from that day?
KD: No, I had gotten some calls earlier and the crazy thing about it was
Cincinnati called me before Indianapolis, and they were planning on taking me
with their next available pick. They told me just to relax and wait. And
as soon as I got off the phone with them, Indianapolis called and said they were
taking me now. I always felt like I was a good fit for this team and I love the
staff and Coach Dungy. It was cool how the day worked out.
ET: Who else did you visit besides the Colts before the draft?
|(Photo: Texas Tech Athletics)|
KD: After the Colts I went to Jacksonville, Cincinnati, and Houston.
ET: But if the Colts hadn't taken you, you would have gone to Cincinnati…
KD: Draft day is crazy, I didn't even know that was going to happen. I
just sat there waiting with my eyes on the phone and Coach Dungy had the next
pick. They were the kind of team I was hoping for, the defense they run and it
was cool that I was blessed with that.
ET: You must be proud of what you accomplished during your college career:
58 tackles 2nd best by a defensive lineman in the Big-12 last year and 6 sacks…what
do you think makes you so successful out there on the field?
KD: I give all the glory to God for all of my talents and everything. I feel
like it was instilled in my from an early age to work hard from being in a
pastoral household and my brothers in something. So that's something that's been
instilled in me to be self-motivated and be disciplined. Just a hard workout can
make up for a lot of things, I always try to push myself and push people around
me, so I think that's the one thing that I excelled at on the field and in
practice. Hard work and studying in the film room and learning more about my
opponent and things like that really helped me have the type of career that I
did in college.
ET: Why do you think you're a good fit for their scheme?
KD: The prototypical defensive end in the NFL is a bigger guy, but I have
other assets I use on the field. Just the type of D-ends, the type of linemen
they use, the fact that they get off the ball and get up the field every play
and just blow things up, I love that type of defense. They use a lot of quicker
guys, a lot of speed and they compensate for some of the size difference with
the NFL, but they do a great job. Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis, those two
are guys that I used to watch and patterned my game after them. So it will
be cool to be in the locker room with them when I get down there.
Scout.com subscribers can read the rest of this interview this weekend
where Key will talk about his visit with the Colts in early April, what he's
noticed about the Colts' defensive ends, his unique first name, transitioning to
the NFL and much more! In the meantime, you can learn more about him by visiting
his Scout.com player profile page.
|A member of the Professional Football Writers of America, Ed Thompson's NFL and college football player interviews and features have been published across the Scout.com network and syndicated through FoxSports.com's NFL team pages.