Long after the fisticuffs at Baltimore Ravens training camp were over but not nearly forgotten after Wednesday's practice, I got a few minutes one-on-one with tight end Davon Drew. Drew has been thrust into the starting position after injuries to both Dennis Pitta (hand) and Ed Dickson (shoulder) over the past two weeks.
Drew was originally a fifth round pick of the Ravens in the 2009 NFL Draft out of East Carolina. Once thought to be the heir apparent to fan favorite Todd Heap, Drew underachieved and was waived twice by the team and never made it onto the playing field in a regular season game as he spent the overwhelming majority of tine on the Practice Squad.
Baltimore Beatdown (BB): So obviously you were behind Dennis Pitta and Ed Dickson and you were looking at film expecting to be called upon when needed and now the two of them go down and you're the number one tight end. Are you ready for this?
Davon Drew (DD): "You take it as an opportunity and try to make the most of it. This is my fourth year coming up and I've seen a lot. I've been at my low, I've had good days and I'm just trying to make the most of my opportunity."
(Read more on the Devon Drew interview after the 'Jump')
BB: Speaking of the highs and lows, you were a draft pick back when Todd Heap was here, then you were gone. You went to Miami and now you're back, you've had the highs and lows, so how appreciative are you to be given that opportunity to not only be back on this team, but to be looked at as a big option in that offense?
DD: "Well, to be honest, when you've had a rough start to your career, you're kind of more appreciative to be here, of the staff here still believing in me. I'm thankful to be here, it's a great place, good tradition, and like I'm saying I'm just trying to make the team so I can stay here as long as possible."
BB: Coming out of ECU four years ago, you're a wide-eyed rookie coming from a program tht wasn't quite the size of a Florida, a Michigan, an Ohio State. Now you look around, see some of these younger guys out here. What's the difference between being a four-year vet as opposed to a wide-eyed rookie?
DD: "I think it's probably more mental, because as a four-year player, you came through the program, you know the ins and outs, you know the tempo, the speed and knowing the playbook both inside and out., stuff like that. Coming in as a rookie, everything is learning, what time to wake up, what time to come over here, learning from vets. I think that has a lot to do with it, just the mental phase of it."
BB: Every player has something they take pride in, whether it's speed, blocking ability, able to move with the ball. What do you feel your strength is, now that you're going to be a number one option at tight end?
DD: "Um, I can't say it's my speed because I'm definitely not the fastest tight end. I feel like I'm a decent blocker and I think that'll be my strength but I feel I can run routes and do stuff like that also so I just try to do what I can."
BB: You get the ball in the open field. Are you going to try to juke somebody out or are you going to put your head down and run over them?
DD: "I can't promise you I'll try to put my head down because I once was an athlete in my days. I might try to make a move on somebody or something like that."
BB: Alright, thanks. Good luck to you.
DD: "Appreciate it."