Marcell Dareus Interview
Tom Sisti: Nick Saban, your coach at Alabama, is someone who has experience in the NFL and runs his program like an NFL team. Was that a big factor in you going to Alabama, having that system to prepare you to go to the NFL?
Marcell Dareus: “Umm, really it wasn’t. My main reason I went to Bama was that my mother was sick and it was close to home. One thing about coaches is they can always get replaced and they can always be fired and sent to other places but Alabama’s facilities weren’t going anywhere. When I saw the facilities and the teachers and the classrooms, I knew that was where I wanted to go. It wasn’t the NFL background, it wasn’t who he was, it was what they (Alabama) offered.”
TS: You mentioned your mother (she passed away in May 2010 of a heart ailment). You’ve been faced with many tragedies and setbacks so far in your life. Has that helped you at all on the field, knowing that you’ve been able to overcome so much and still be successful no matter how tough things get?
MD: ”Of course. On that note, of course I have to, like everybody, go through a little something in life. Everyone has their own (test), mine is unique but it doesn’t get me down. I don’t get sad about it, I use it as fuel to really push me to keep going and do the best I can in life because I want to be successful and help my family.”
TS: There has to be a big difference in coming into the NFL as the third overall pick as opposed to college where you came in relatively unheralded as a three star recruit. Was it easier in college not having all that pressure to produce immediately or do you prefer all of the expectations and the opportunity for you to start and contribute right away?
MD: “You know it feels good for people to push you to want to do better. Everybody has their own expectations, but it really doesn’t matter whether or not people push me, if they want me to do well, I just gotta go out there and do my business. That’s all that really matters to satisfy myself.”
TS: What was the biggest challenge in getting ready for the draft?
MD: “Just that transition of not really knowing what was gonna happen with the lockout. Preparing for the combine and then getting ready for the draft, you don’t know what’s gonna happen next, (you’re) flying here and flying there. You kind of get lost in the shuffle”
TS: One last question, with the season opener just days away, do you have any message for the league or all of your Bills’ fans out there?
MD: “I don’t really have anything crazy to say but ya’ll just stay tuned and… keep buying my jerseys. (laughs) Keep showing support and I’m gonna do my best out there to support the Bills.”Marcell Dareus is someone who plays with an edge and quiet confidence on the field but is also a genuine and humble man off of it. If this preseason has been any indication, Marcell looks to be a force on the field and has already been embraced by the Bills fan base for the way he seems to “get it” both on and off the field. He’s driven for success and it sure seems as though he’s going to make a big impact on this league for many years to come. We’d like to thank him again for his time and wish him the best of luck this season.