D.J. Humphries: “I feel like I’m a pretty awesome person”

TEMPE, Ariz. – The Arizona Cardinals bolstered their offensive line on Thursday night with the addition of tackle D.J. Humphries, whom they selected in the first round of the 2015 NFL Draft.

Humphries was one of five tackles selected in the first round of the draft.

Humphries had a chance to do a conference call with members of the media shortly after getting his named called:

On if he knew the Cardinals were interested:

“I knew they were interested. I just didn’t know how it would all fall out. The draft is a whole different monster, but I was definitely interested in coming out to the West Coast. I’ve been on the East Coast my whole life. I’ve always wanted to get out there and get to experience something different.”

On what made him believe that he should enter the draft despite the NFL’s letter suggesting he stay in school because of his projected draft position:

“If I don’t believe in myself, nobody else will. That’s exactly how I felt. I believed that I could be a first-round draft pick, and I believed that I could put the work in and make myself a first-round draft pick and gain the weight that I needed to. That’s the type of person I am – once I make a commitment to doing something, I’m all the way in. So once I said that I was coming out of school, it was all the way; all pedal to the metal pretty much to get everything done I needed to get done and prepare myself the way I needed to prepare.”

On if it was a hard decision to go against the NFL’s advice:

“No, I can’t say that it was. It was hard at first, but after I stopped doubting myself and came to my senses, it wasn’t that hard for me.”

On the reaction of people around him to his decision:

“It was pretty positive. All my friends and all my family were in my corner. They all told me whatever you decide to do we’re going to have your back regardless. Of course there was a lot of other outside stuff, a lot of outside people trying to get me to stay in school, but I just felt like it was my time.”

On moving to right tackle:

“No problems with it at all. If you can play left, you can play right. If you can play right, you can play left. So I’m ready for whatever position they need me to play.”

On the intangibles he brings outside of football:

“Probably my personality. I feel like I’m a pretty awesome person. I try not to sugarcoat or script anything. I try to just keep it all real and let people get the real me. I want people to feel good when I leave the room. I want people to feel happy and be smiling. I just try to be me pretty much. Just a hard worker; all I know how to do is be me and work hard. That’s probably the two main things I’m going to bring to the room.”

On playing with a nasty temperament:

“I would say that I get that off my dad. That’s just something he taught me from a jitterbug – no matter what position you’re going to play, you’re going to have to play hard, you’re going to have to play to the whistle, through the whistle even sometimes. It’s been pounded in my head since I was a kid, so it kind of came natural for me when I got older and actually started playing tackle football.”

On gaining weight, how much he weighs now, and how that will affect his footwork when he moves around:

“When I got to training, I was 290. I’m 315 now, so that’s 25 pounds up. I’ve gained about 15-20 pounds every offseason, so it’s not too out of the ordinary for me. As far as my footwork and my movement and stuff, it’s crazy because I feel like I move a lot more balanced now. I feel like I move the same but I’m a lot more controlled and a lot more balanced. I don’t know if that comes with just the training I’ve been doing or if I have more of an anchor to keep me balanced. I don’t know what it is, but I definitely move the same. That’s for sure.”

On if he did anything special to gain weight:

“Nothing special really; just meat and potatoes. It was all meat and potatoes. I’ll tell you what, 5,000-calorie meals three times a day.”

On him being an expensive date when teams took him out to dinner:

“Oh, yeah, I was very expensive. I was appetizers, entrée and dessert.”

On some of the weaknesses he feels like he has to work on once he gets here:

“One of my main weaknesses I think is just getting more consistent overall. I feel like sometimes that nasty temperament sometimes kind of hurts me. Sometimes I want to come right off the ball and hit somebody instead of coming off the ball and playing in my technique like I’m supposed to do. I think it’s just playing a lot more consistent with my technique and playing calmer – not getting so riled up. Sometimes I get a little riled up on the field and I want to be too aggressive so it costs me. Those are probably the two things I need to work on.”

On what he knows about Bruce Arians’ offense:

“I don’t know too much scheme-wise. I learned a couple things when we did the little install when I came on my visit, but as far as scheme, I don’t know too much. I know that he’s a great coach. He’s been coach of the year two years (out of three), so he’s got to be doing something right. Ten wins, 11 wins; it’s got to be right.”

On what he knows about Arizona and the Phoenix area:

“I know it’s hot. That’s what I know. The one time I came down there, it was hot. But the thing about Arizona, it’s hot but it’s not like Florida hot. Florida hot is humid and muggy. Arizona is like hot and nice. I sat outside and it was like 80 degrees and I didn’t sweat one time because there was no humidity in the air. I’m just ready to get out there, to be honest with you. I’ve only been past Texas one time and that was to come to Arizona, so I’m ready.”

On when he will arrive in Arizona:

“Tomorrow morning.”





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