Apr 26, 2012; New York, NY, USA; NFL commissioner Roger Goodell introduces defensive end Quinton Coples (North Carolina) as the 16th overall pick by the New York Jets in the 2012 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall. Mandatory Credit: James Lang-US PRESSWIRE
Steve Serby got to sit down with new Jets defensive end Quinton Coples. Here is the Q and A, courtesy of the New York Post.
Q: Do you want to be great?
Q: Do you think you can be great?
A: Yes. … I think with hard work, keeping God first, and trusting and believing in the coaching staff that I have right now. I definitely trust them and have faith in them that they’re gonna bring out the best out in me and make me a great player.
Q: What would you say the best way to motivate you is?
A: Hard-nosed, hands-on. Just let me know how it is from the beginning. I want to know the truth, and only the truth.
Q: Which is better: sacks, or sex?
Q: Why is that?
A: You can’t describe the feeling that you get when you have sacks. But when you have sex, it’s a moment feeling. But when you get a sack, the moment sticks with you.
Q: Describe what that moment feels like.
A: It just gives you an adrenaline rush that you have to get another one, or you’re thirsty, and you’re just dying to get another sack.
Q: Any favorite sacks?
A: There’s two. First one is I was in ninth grade. I was in JV, we were playing a 4-A powerhouse team, J.H. Rose from Greenville, N.C., and basically, I was on the right side, came from his blind side, it was right before halftime, he dropped back and … it was me versus him. One of the loudest sacks that I ever had.
Q: Was he hurt?
A: Yeah, he was hurt.
Q: How hurt?
A: He didn’t finish the game.
Q: Do you hate quarterbacks?
A: On the field, yeah. … It’s like they’re just the worst people ever once you’re on the field. It’s like I have to do something to ’em, I have to hurt ’em. They’re trying to hurt my teammates and me in a sense, so I have to make sure that they don’t do that.
Q: What was the other favorite sack?
A: My freshman year in college, I sacked Jimmy Clausen from Notre Dame, first sack.
Q: Tell me about that one.
A: Going against a tough right O-tackle, and I came around, and went on the field. I didn’t really know the game like some of my teammates did, and I’m just going up the field and squeezing the pocket, and Jimmy Clausen stepped up, and I spinned backwards and went right there to him.
Q: Who are some other quarterbacks you want to sack other than Tom Brady?
A: Each 16 of ’em that’s on the schedule (smile). All of ’em. That’s a part of my job now.
Q: How would you describe your on-field mentality?
Q: Crazy how?
A: Just don’t be thinking. I got my mission — I got the play in my head, I got my response to whatever the offensive linemen give me, and I gotta get to the quarterback. One of those three things is gonna happen.
Q: Describe the transformation that takes place from the cool, calm and collected gentleman you are when you put on the uniform.
A: Once I put on the pads on and that helmet, it’s all business.
Q: Describe what you become.
A: (Pause) A Transformer, I guess you could say (laugh). Yeah, it’s something similar like that, where they’re just a car one day and then they can just transfer into this monster.
Q: What would you tell Jets fans worried you might be the next Vernon Gholston?
A: No, I’m not the next Vernon Gholston. I’m Quinton Coples, and all the expectations the fans have for me, I’m looking forward to try and exceed them.
Q: You think Julius Peppers is more of a finesse guy and you’re more of a power guy?
A: I would say that from what I’ve seen on film.
Q: When did you meet Lawrence Taylor?
A: He came and spoke at a chapel in my junior year.
Q: What did you take from that?
A: A man who’s passionate about God and understands that God helped him to his success, regardless through all the situations that he’s been through, God still is the one he can depend on.
Q: The report that you protected yourself for the draft as a senior so you wouldn’t get hurt?
A: That’s a false accusation whoever said that. At the end of the day you can’t play this game of football scared, or on the safe side, because that’s where you do get hurt and you get put out.
Q: What drives you?
A: Pride. Being where I come from, the things that I’ve been through in life, the people that depend on me in my community, my family … that keeps me going.
Q: The things you’ve been through in life?
A: Just hard times. … My mom had to leave me and go to school to go work, and drive trucks, so therefore I had to stay home by myself, and get myself together. I had to provide for myself. I had to leave home in 11th grade to make a good decision for me to go to Hargrove Military Academy. Things of that nature.
Q: Your mom was trained to drive trucks?
A: Yeah, she had a Class C license.
Q: So you were home with who?
A: My stepfather.
Q: How long would you go without seeing your mom?
A: A few months.
Q: Was that hard for you?
A: I didn’t know the man I was staying with. … I knew him as far as comfortable-wise, but my mom’s my backbone, she’s all I got.
Q: Tell me about her.
A: That’s a strong independent woman willing to do anything for her kids. Definitely big on faith. The perseverance that she did throughout my life, and the other things that she overcame while I was in school, while my sister was in school, is just amazing. … She went out and got two or three jobs when we didn’t have no food, or we couldn’t have nothing to eat.
Q: You have a lot of confidence in yourself. Why is that?
A: What I’ve been through. What I’ve seen in life. That’s what motivates me, that’s what makes me have confidence.
Q: Boyhood idol?
A: Michael Jordan.
Q: How good a basketball player were you in high school?
A: I was a very good basketball player.
Q: Who did you get offers from?
A: Virginia Tech, N.C. State.
Q: In Kinston, N.C,. I read that there is no rush hour traffic. … How will you adapt to New York City?
A: (Chuckle) Well , you know, we’re currently in New Jersey. … I definitely don’t plan on going to the city battling traffic every day, so it’s definitely a convenience for me to be here.
Q: Your favorite team was the Steelers?
A: I grew up on Jerome Bettis, just the way he was moving defenses. … Fell in love with Ben Roethlisberger, and Bill Cowher, and how they just kept the tradition of winning and they kept doing things right, and it was just unbelievable to watch.
Q: Three dinner guests?
A: Martin Luther King, Barack Obama, Bill Gates.
Q: Why Bill Gates?
A: He’s definitely a successful man. … He’s done a lot of great things for this country, and he’s a multi-billionaire. I think he’d just have a lot of insight that I would be interested in learning about.
Q: Favorite movie?
A: “American Gangster.”
Q: Favorite actor?
A: Denzel Washington.
Q: Favorite actress?
A: Meagan Good.
Q: Are you going to be a quarterback’s worst nightmare?
A: Yes sir. That’s my name.
He seems like a really great kid, hopefully he will perform on the field as well.