New England Patriots Second Round Draft Pick #65 Deion Branch
Saturday, April 20, 2002
Q: How are you doing Deion?**
DB: All right, doing really good now.
Q: Some of the stuff we were reading maybe projected a little higher, maybe late third or early fourth round, how do you feel being a second round pick?**
DB: It is very delightful. First of all I would like to give thanks to God. Without God there wouldn't be me, so that is my first thing. Second of all to be part of Super Bowl Champions and also future Super Bowl Champions.
Q: You sound pretty optimistic about that?**
DB: Yes sir, yes sir.
Q: Sounds like you have got a good situation here, we have Troy Brown a Pro Bowl wide receiver, but other than that the position seems to be wide open, are you aware of your situation coming in?**
DB: No sir. Coming in as a rookie I just want to come in first of all and make the team. It doesn't make any difference if you are the first, second, third round or fourth pick you still have to make the team and that is my objective to come in, make the team and also benefit as far as helping the team out in every way that I can.
Q: Did you have an idea that you might end up in New England? Where they a team that had interest in you?**
DB: Yeah, there were a couple of more teams. Jacksonville, Baltimore, Kansas City, but you know Coach Daboll came in and visited two days ago and I think it was pretty much settled then and I told him I was going to come out. He wanted to come in and see me, he wanted to visit and I went out and did my best for him. I can only do my best for him so that is what I did and he told me he liked me and that he was going to try his best to help out and that is what happened.
Q: Can you describe your game for us, how you like to play?**
DB: I just try to be a leader on the field by example. I just try to go out and do my job. One thing I do is go by what the coaches tell me to do. I go out and do it in practice. It starts in practice first of all and it carries over into the game and that is basically me.
Q: Was it a pro style offense you had at Louisville?**
DB: well it was a passing type offense. We had great coaches, great players around me and a great team. Fortunately I was just blessed to be a part of the University of Louisville and also to be drafted by the New England Patriots.
Q: When did Coach come out and work you out?**
DB: That was two days ago, Coach Daboll, the receivers coach.
Q: And you said you did your best for him, in your mind what was that?**
DB: Well in my mind, he came in, he wanted to just get on the board. We watched a little film. We discussed certain things that were going on. What I was doing. What the defense was doing. Then we went out and caught a couple passes and then that was it.
Q: How long were you with them?**
DB: I was with them for at least four hours.
Q: Did you come visit New England at all?**
DB: I didn't come visit New England.
Q: Where did you go visit?**
DB: Nowhere. A lot of teams came in, but I never went out and visited any teams.
Q: When you got up this morning what was your expectation? Where did you think you might go? How did you see it playing out?**
DB: Well to be honest, you know me being in my perspective, my position, I was just leaving it all to God. I can't control it. The only thing I could do was try to go out and have a great season and try to go out with a bang and leave the rest of it in God's hands. He controls everything.
Q: Did they tell you how you would fit into the scheme of things here?**
DB: Yeah, coach talked about it. I talked to Jake Hallum and coach Brian [Daboll]. He was telling me all the receivers are 5-9, 5-10 and 5-11. You know they like the shorter guys, quick, fast guys. They are not all prejudice about the guys being 6-2 or 6-3. They want guys that are good people and that can play the game of football.
Q: Did you hear that a lot, that you might be overlooked because of your size?**
DB: I mean that's life. It's going to happen, not only to me, it's going to happen to other guys. I could have been 6-3 and still have been taken at the same position. I can't do anything about it. I am 5-9 and I only have to live with it. I just try to go out and just pour my heart out into the game and thank the lord. I've just been blessed to play this game.
Q: The key to making a big-league roster is sometimes special teams. We see you return punts, is that something you are working on? Talk about your punt returning?**
DB: Well, whatever coach Belichick and all the rest of the staff…if they want me to be a gunner, yes sir I'll be a gunner. If you want me to go in and block field goals, I'll go in and block field goals. I know it's my job being a rookie that I am going to be playing some other positions other than just wide receiver or punt returner. I just have to go out and do my job.
Q: Have you patterned yourself after other shorter receivers?**
DB: Well I look up to a lot of the shorter guys. You know, Marvin Harrison, Jacquez Green, David Patten and Troy Brown. You can only follow those guys you can relate yourself with.
Q: You mentioned two of the Patriots, what have you seen of Troy Brown and David Patten and how would you compare your game to theirs?**
DB: Guys that aren't scared, they have the love for the game. They are passionate. They are 5-9. They know they are 5-9 and you can't do anything about it, but you know you can play the game of football and you can compete with the guys at 6-2 or 6-3.