Ed Thompson: Let’s talk a little bit about your career at
Louisville, because I think you’ve got one of the interesting stories of this
draft. You’ve got just 19 starts under your belt, but you had a
tremendous impact on the passing attack of Louisville. Talk about your
Harry Douglas: I redshirted my freshman year in 2003. I was
pretty average at that point, but I became more dedicated to the game. I
had a coach that worked with me, so I caught a lot of balls, ran extra routes
and a lot of things that could better me. I worked harder my sophomore
year and I started getting to play a lot, and that made me work harder in the
weight room and even harder towards becoming a great receiver. I had a
great junior year, but we also had a great season, winning the Orange Bowl.
Then my senior year, I knew I would have to work harder because I knew a lot of
people would be gunning for me because of what I accomplished in my junior year.
And I didn’t want to be a player that everyone thought just had one great year
and then I was never heard of again. I wanted to live up to expectations and do everything that people thought that I was going to do for a second
year. So I worked hard during my senior year to make sure I stayed at that
level. or got better.
Thompson: You certainly are to be congratulated. You
finished second in both Louisville and Big East history with 2,924 receiving
yards. Out of all the things you accomplished at Louisville, is that one
of your top accomplishments that you look back on with pride?
Douglas: Yes sir, that’s one of them.
Thompson: What else stands out as you look back on your
Douglas: I think my junior year I had the most yards ever in
Louisville history in one season. I tied the Orange Bowl record my junior
year for most receiving yards and catches. And our team winning the Orange Bowl,
Harry Douglas catches a pass in full stride.
AP Photo/Keith Srakocic
Thompson: You had a right ankle sprain in the fourth game of
your senior year against Syracuse. How much do you think that limited you
from having an even bigger season overall your senior year?
Douglas: I think it did a little bit. I know I came back
early from the injury. That was my first time missing games in my
career, period — the first time ever being hurt like that. I just wanted to get back on the field and try to help my
team win more football games and compete. So I came back about two weeks early. I was still kind of sore, but I was just sucking it up and
giving it my all to help my team win.
Thompson: You have terrific speed and I think what makes you
so dangerous once you get off the line of scrimmage is that it’s tough for
guys to keep up with you.
Douglas: I think the main thing is my first step. My
first step is so quick going off the line, and then I have the speed to
accelerate and run by you. My first step is probably quicker than a lot of
people think it is.
Thompson: You’re the kind of guy that will also lay
yourself out for the ball. You aren’t afraid to do that, and yet
you’ve been very fortunate with injuries. Since you’ve had the ankle
sprain, has that made you any more tentative about having to throw your body out
where you need to make the catch?
Douglas: No, there were some games we had after I had the
injury. I didn’t care and it didn’t matter. The ball was in the
air and I was going to try and go get it.
Thompson: Talk about your leadership out on the field.
I’ve had the opportunity to talk to you in person and I can tell from your
personality why people respect you and enjoy being around you.
Douglas: I try my best. I try to bring confidence to
my team because I always say the best way to go into a game is to go into it
with confidence. I’m the person on the team who is always getting people
up, people feed off of my energy. Different people you’ve got to push
different ways. I’m a vocal leader, but at the same time you have to
lead by your play.
Thompson: I know you approach the game seriously, but it’s
also very obvious that you’re a guy who has an awful lot of fun playing this
game, aren’t you?
Douglas: Yeah, I love to play the game. I love the
limelight. I’m serious about winning, but I laugh a lot out while I'm out there. I just love the game, period. I love being around the
game of football.
Thompson: I think one thing the Senior Bowl reinforced is
that when it was game time and clutch time you were there to make that big 23-yard
reception that helped setup the winning score.
Douglas: We were on the 5-yard line and those are the kind
of situations I love. I know a lot of people probably wouldn’t want to
be in those situations — down by a couple points and you have to drive 95
yards — but I perform great
under pressure, so I love those kinds of moments of a football game.
Harry Douglas makes a diving catch to set up a Louisville touchdown.
AP Photo/Garry Jones
Thompson: What are you most excited about when you look back
on your performance at the Combine?
Douglas: My route running. That’s the one thing that
I take pride in. I can get in and out of breaks and cuts going full speed
and without having to chop my steps. I try to get out my breaks well and
come back to the football and catch it well with my hands. Also my three cone,
because I had the best three cone out of everybody at the Combine, so I was
really excited about that.
Thompson: You had the opportunity to work with a terrific
quarterback in Brian Brohm. Why is Brian going to be successful at the NFL
Douglas: He’s a student of the game and a very smart
quarterback. He has a great personality and he understands what it takes
to be a quarterback. He has all the tools to be a great quarterback at the
next level. As a receiver you always want a quarterback who is going to
lookout for the receiver, and I think he does a great job of that.
Thompson: During those drills at the Combine you had some
opportunities to catch some passes from some of these other top quarterbacks.
Was there anybody else that really stood out to you, where they threw a ball to you and you went, “Wow, that was a nice throw.”
Douglas: Joe Flacco. His ball came with a lot of velocity and at the same time
it was accurate.
Thompson: You know there's one black mark on your brilliant
college career that we have to talk about. During your 2005 season you threw one
pass and it was intercepted.
Douglas: [laughing] I was the holder for field goals.
The snap got away from me and I rolled out to pass. He was open and I
threw it, but the guy who was covering came over and his vertical had to be at least 44 to
45 inches. He jumped up real high and stayed up in the air. Brian (Brohm)
gives me stuff about that all the time, too [laughs].
Thompson: You know that ruined any chance you might have had
of being a quarterback...
Douglas: Yeah, [laughs] my quarterback days are over.
Thompson: Is there anything I haven’t asked you that you
want the fans to know about you?
Douglas: My brother and I are best friends. A lot of
people probably don’t know that I have a little brother who starts at point guard
for Florida State and is one of the best point guards
in the ACC. A lot of people don’t know that we’re best friends.
We talk every day and I support him all the time.
A member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of America, Ed Thompson's player interviews and NFL features
are published across the Scout.com network and at FOXSports.com. You can contact him by email
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