Steelers RB, Jonathan Dwyer Interview
Jonathan Dwyer played college football for Georgia Tech. He was an All-American in 2008, and nominated as the ACC Player of the Year in 2008. He rushed for about 3000 yards in three years of college football. He attended the NFL Combine, after deciding to forgo his senior season, and entered the 2010 NFL Draft, and was selected in the 6th round by the Pittsburgh Steelers. This interview was conducted before the 2010 NFL season.
Strauss : If you could meet anyone in the world, who would it be and why?
Dwyer : My grandfather. My mom says I remind her of him… and because, he died before I was born.
Strauss : Who was your childhood star? Why?
Dwyer : Walter Payton. I loved his passion for the game, his intensity, and running style.
Strauss : When did you see your first live NFL game?
Dwyer : When I was six years old, I saw the Carolina Panthers vs Atlanta Falcons and the Falcons won.
Strauss : If you weren’t playing in the NFL, what would you want to do?
Dwyer : Either become a coach, or become an entrepreneur.
Strauss : What is your favorite song to listen to before a game?
Dwyer : My favorite song is lost my mind by Young Jeezy or just any song with a beat and some gospel music.
Strauss : What is your favorite movie of all time?
Dwyer : Friday
Strauss : What is your favorite snack food?
Dwyer : Peanut butter crackers, and I love captain crunch cereal!
Strauss : What is your favorite type of pie?
Dwyer : Not a big pie person, but my favorite cake is red velvet especially my mom’s.
Strauss : What is your favorite TV-Show?
Dwyer : The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Martin, and Tyler Perry’s House of Payne.
Strauss : What is your favorite meal?
Dwyer : Fried chicken, Mac and Cheese, with green beans.
Strauss : What is your favorite video game?
Dwyer : MLB baseball, Madden series, and NCAA College Basketball
Strauss : What is the one thing you can’t leave your house without?
Dwyer : My phones and iPods.
Strauss : How long have you played football?
Dwyer : Since I was five years old.
Strauss : Did you play any other sports in high school?
Dwyer : I played baseball and ran track
Strauss : What is your favorite sport to play other than football?
Dwyer : Hmmm, track because I was ranked the 4th fastest kid in the country in my age group.
Strauss : When did you realize that you were going to play football in college and in the NFL?
Dwyer : To play in college, was after my junior year in high school, and to play football in the NFL was after my sophomore year at Georgia Tech.
Strauss : What impact did your high school coach have on your pro career?
Dwyer : He made the player I am, being physical and having good vision and being passionate and emotional about this game I love to play.
Strauss : Describe the hardest change between the jump from high school to college.
Dwyer : I guess just the game speed, but after getting some reps you start to relax and become more comfortable.
Strauss : How has the number process worked throughout your life?
Dwyer : When I got to Georgia Tech, I wanted my high school number, 12, but Coach Gailey gave the number 21 to me because he thought I would represent the number like Calvin Johnson did. There is a rumor now that 21 at tech is a good luck number. The Steelers gave me 41 to wear.
Strauss : How important has film been to your development?
Dwyer : Actually, I learned in high school that for you to separate yourself from other players you have to be smarter than your opponent.
Strauss : What impact did your college coach have on your professional career?
Dwyer : Coach Johnson made me a tougher being, in the offense we ran, you had to be tough and be very discipline.
Strauss : How had your game improved from your freshman to your junior year?
Dwyer : Probably just maturing, and becoming a smarter player.
Strauss : How influential was Tashard Choice to your growth?
Dwyer : He is my big brother, he helps me out with advice, and is always there for me.
Strauss : Who was the hardest player get by in college?
Dwyer : Hmm, the best player I played against was Chris Long.
Strauss : What is your favorite memory from Georgia Tech?
Dwyer : By far, winning the ACC championship… Beating Georgia, and also, just being around good players and good friends.
Strauss : What was it like to train for the combine?
Dwyer : It was fun and once in a lifetime opportunity
Strauss : What was your draft day experience like?
Dwyer : I heard rumors expecting me to be a 1st round pick, but it was a great experience and once in a lifetime experience. And the happiest moment of my life.
Strauss : What was going through your mind when you were drafted?
Dwyer : Exciting!! So glad to be a Steeler!!
Strauss : Who do you compare your game to? Why?
Dwyer : I try to play like Walter Payton/Eric Dickerson/Jerome Bettis. Walter because of his passion he brought to the game. Dickerson because of his break-away speed and one-cut get up the field mentality, and Bettis because of his physical play he had brought to the game.
Strauss : What do you expect from playing in the NFL?
Dwyer : Just a blessing and a true opportunity to play this game at the highest level, and live my dream of something I have wanted to do since I was 5 years old.
Strauss : Could you have predicted how far football was going to carry you?
Dwyer : Some-what. This was my goal and my dream since I was five years old.
Strauss : What is your favorite quote?
Dwyer : “Never Die Easy” – Walter Payton
Strauss : For someone aspiring to play football in the NFL, do you have any advice for them?
Dwyer : Don’t settle… And always dream and try to achieve your goals and dreams that you want to achieve. Do the little things to get to where you want to be and stay humble… Stay in your books, and keep God first.
Strauss : Is there anything you want to tell your fans?
Dwyer : I’m a hard-working guy and will do my best to be a contributor to help the Steelers get another ring…and I’m glad and excited to be a Steeler. And, my nickname is the JD or Diesel for all the fans
Strauss : Thank you so much.
Dwyer : Thank you, I’m glad and excited to be a Steeler!