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Mingo press conf. transcript - 4/26

Posted Apr 26, 2013

The transcript of Barkevious Mingo's introductory press conference.

Browns Linebacker Barkevious Mingo Press Conference 4-26-13

Rob Chudzinski

(Opening statement)- “Thanks for coming today. We are thrilled to introduce our newest Cleveland Brown Barkevious Mingo. A couple special guests that KeKe brought along with him, his mother Barbara is here, as well as his girlfriend Lauren is joining us today. We’re excited about KeKe being here and come on up KeKe, now is your time.”

Barkevious Mingo

(On what he has to do to justify being drafted so high)- “Just come out here ready to work. I think that’s what these coaches are expecting and that’s what I’m committed to do. They brought me in for a reason and I’m here to play football.”

(On if he picked number 51 and why)- “I picked it. It was the closest to 49 I could get.”

(On how well he knows Tyrann Mathieu)- “He was a teammate for three years, a good friend, brother.”

(On if he would like to see Mathieu in brown and orange)- “I’d love to see him in brown and orange. I’d love to see anybody from the purple and gold in the brown and orange. Like I said, we’re all brothers. We bled and sweat in the same uniform and to see any of those guys come here would be awesome.”

(On what he says when people ask him about Mathieu)- “I tell them that he was a great teammate, a great playmaker. He had an instinct for getting to the ball and he just made plays. Didn’t always know how he did it, but he did it.”

(On why he didn’t start playing football until he was a junior in high school)- “My mom really didn’t like us playing contact sports. Basketball is what we did and we enjoyed playing it. She played basketball, my older brother played basketball and we’re just a basketball family.”

(On if his mom has changed her mind)- “She changed her mind. My little brothers are playing now so it’s good.”

(On what the last 24 hours has been like)- “It’s been crazy. I really can’t put it into words. I’m just blessed and thrilled to be here. Hearing my name called last night, I just can’t put it into words. But like I said, I’m excited and ready to get back to work.”

(On he knew anything about the Browns before his visit)- “Before the visit, nothing. I guess I got a little crash course driving through the city with some of the guys that worked here. They kind of gave me a brief history of the team, the city and the new direction they are heading in to. I was thrilled and I’m happy to be aboard.”

(On transitioning to outside linebacker)- “I can say this, I have two coaches that are great for this position, Coach (Brian) Baker and Coach (Joe) Cullen. I know they are going to coach me up well and they’re committed. They’re committed to winning football games, committed to this team and they’re just ready to win.”

(On if he has talked to any players or coaches who have made that transition in the past)- “I have not. Only the guys here and I just haven’t talked to anybody.”

(On if he was surprised at how far Jarvis Jones fell in the draft and if he is that much better than Jones)- “Surprised he fell that low? Yes, but the coaches here obviously knew what they wanted in a player and as a person. I think they made the right decision, obviously, and I’m just thrilled to be here.”

(On if he asked Les Miles about Ohio)- “He actually brought it up right when they were about to pick and he was like ‘I’m from Ohio.’ Then my phone started ringing. It was crazy.”

(On how Miles helped him get to where he is today)- “I think it wasn’t just him, it was the whole coaching staff we had at LSU. They prepared us to be good players, to be grown men, mature and just helped us in every aspect of our lives.”

(On Vernon Gholston making the same transition that he making and how he can avoid not panning out like Gholston)- “I guess just my work ethic. At LSU I played with a high motor. I wanted to get there. Every play I want to get a sack, I wanted to be in the back field. Just having that mindset I guess helps everything else.”

(On if he has to put on weight to be an NFL linebacker)- “I think I could play at this weight right here. A lot of people have been telling me you need to be heavier to be in the NFL, ‘You’ve got to be 20 pounds heavier.’ I actually played lighter some years in my college career and did absolutely fine. I weigh more than I did in college and I don’t think it will be too much of an adjustment to make.”

(On what he weighs now)- “Like 237.”

(On how he won the battle with him mom about playing contact sports)- “I just had to go around her back. Well it wasn’t really around her back, but I really didn’t have her blessing. I obviously won her over late in the year and got her to come to some of my games, and kind of helped her make that transition from basketball to football and it was good.”

(On if he was playing football before his mom knew about it)- “I was practicing.”

(On if he was just a pass rusher at LSU)- “No, that wasn’t just my role. I was a run stopper. I was an every down player. I wasn’t just a pass rusher.”

(On how he played against Alabama)- “I played really good against Alabama. It was one of my better games. Most of the coaches I visited, that was one of the games they enjoyed watching, not only that, but because of the competition level. They obviously had a great offensive line and to see our two lines go against each other, it made those guys want to watch.”

(On describing the perfect sack)- “The perfect sack? Getting a good jump off the line, coming around the edge and just squaring the quarterback up, taking him to the ground.”

(On his relationship with Jarvis Jones)- “I actually met him leaving the combine. That was my first time getting to meet him. He’s a good guy, he actually sat in front of me on the plane. I met him again on another visit. He just a good person, a good player. I wish him nothing but the best.”

(On a future rivalry with Jones since he is on Pittsburgh now)- “I’ll let you guys come up with the rivalry aspect of it. We’re just here to play football.”

(On when he knew he was an elite athlete)- “Just early on, I was pretty good at everything I did. Basketball, I was okay, I will so that. Track, I was really good. When I started playing football, I just got it quickly. After the first year, getting some offers in then I knew that I could hopefully one day make the jump to the NFL. The success I had late is surreal. Obviously, being drafted to the Cleveland Browns is icing on the cake.”

(On if he played as well in 2012 as he did in 2011 because his sack totals were down)- “I feel I played better. Stats really don’t tell how everything went. Teams were doing different stuff this year. They didn’t want to get their quarterback sacked. They were chipping, they were sliding the line, they were doing a lot of stuff to disrupt our rush from the both ends that we had. And we played mobile quarterbacks. If they could get out of the pocket, they’re hitting you for a homerun. By design, we wanted to contain those guys and keep them in the pocket.”

(On his struggles early on at LSU and conquering them)- “Just being a football player, a college football player. The coaches, they taught us technique, they taught us how to play the game full speed, they taught us everything. Looking back on it, I had some really good coaches and they knew what they were doing and they put our players in the best possible position to make plays.”

(On what he will struggle with as a pro)- “Obviously making the jump from a defensive end to an outside linebacker. I’ll be covering tight ends, two receivers. Obviously, I have to get better at covering receivers.”

(On if he was a three in basketball)- “I was the four.”

(On what he did in track and field)- “I was a sprinter. I was a 400 meter guy, 200 meter and 4 x 4.”

(On the 4 x 4 being tough)- “It was a man’s race. That’s what they called it. In basketball, I was an okay scorer but mainly a defensive player.”

(On being convinced to play football)- “I told somebody I was going to go out there and try it out. I still wasn’t too convinced if I would be good at it. But coach (James) Remedies just came around, he told me that they don’t allow 6-4 guards in the NBA. Then he said, ‘I really think that you’ll be a great pass rusher.’ He told me that and it came true.”

(On how long it took to become a top college prospect)- “We had a track meet, the state track meet, one Saturday. I took a break, I got sized up for state rings on Tuesday then went out for football on Wednesday. That was first practice I’d had. The spring game was that Thursday. I had 15 tackles. I wasn’t supposed to be the starter. The guy in front of me got hurt on the first or second play. I made a lot of plays. Coaches were behind me telling me where to go, but just off instinct, it came easy.”

(On who he wants to emulate in the NFL and who he watches film of)- “I think there is a lot of great pass rushers, a lot of great defensive ends and outside linebackers in this league. I feel if you try to pick from one person then you’ll be let down. So I like to watch a lot for guys with a wide range of skills that I know I can try to emulate to better my game.”

(On who he tried to emulate in high school football-wise)- “Honestly, college was all I watched. I would watch LSU. When I started playing, I really didn’t watch NFL that much. I was a basketball fan. I was a Kobe (Bryant) fan, but I couldn’t do that on the field.”

(On if you notice the crowd in big games)- “You definitely notice. There will be times when we played those big games, those Alabama games, where you’ll want to make a call to a guy that’s right here where this chair is and you’re screaming at the top of your lungs and he can’t understand what you’re saying. He doesn’t even acknowledge you. It’s crazy down there, it’s crazy on the field. The noise is just ridiculous.”

(On if they will have to separate him and Trent Richardson)- “No, I think we’ll be okay. I’ve been hanging out with some Alabama guys while I was in New York and they are okay.”

(On if he got more hits or misses on Richardson when they played)- “I got a lot of hits on him. But he’s a truck, he doesn’t go down easy.”

(On playing at the Dawg Pound)- “I’m just excited to play. I’ve been hearing a lot of stories. One of the commentators last night made a little side joke about my name going in perfectly with the Dawg Pound. Like I said, I’m just excited to play there. I know Cleveland has loyal fans, they pack the stadium and they love their Browns.”

(On what other than work ethic will help him reach the Hall of Fame)- “Like I said earlier, with the coaching from these coaches, I feel that the talent level that I have could go as far as I want it to.”

(On what he needs to get done right away)- “I just want to get back to playing football. It’s been a couple months since the Clemson game. I got a nasty taste in my mouth and I just want to strap them on and play football.”

(On how tough of a task it will be covering tight ends and receivers now)- “I don’t think it will be too difficult. I’m not the stiff hip guy, I think I’m pretty mobile and move pretty well. I think it will be an easy transition. I just have to work on it.”