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Behind the Facemask: Jacquizz Rodgers

Posted Sep 14, 2012

Atlanta Falcons Vice President of Football Communications Reggie Roberts returns with his weekly Behind the Facemask feature. Today, Roberts spoke with running back/kick returner Jacquizz Rodgers.

Reggie Roberts:  You obviously had dreams of playing professional football while you were growing up in the great state of Texas, but did you ever think you’d be in the NFL?

Jacquizz Rodgers: “I always had dreams of making it to the NFL.  That was always my number one goal even when I was a little kid.  I knew that I had a chance to play in the League when I rushed for more than 1,400 yards at Oregon State during my sophomore season in 2009.  (Rogers averaged 5.3-yards per carry and rushed for 1,440 yards and scored 21 TDs during his sophomore season for the Beavers).”

RR:  You were a big part of a huge game in Corvallis, Oregon when the Beavers knocked off top-ranked USC 27-21 during your freshman year at Oregon State.  Despite your team being 25-point underdogs, you rushed for 186 yards and scored two touchdowns and basically put yourself on the national radar screen with that performance.  What do you remember about that game?

JR: “I remember looking at all of those huge guys USC had, but I also remember how our guys were determined not be intimidated.  We had a great game plan and I remember how fired up everyone was.  You don’t get the chance to knock off the number one team in the nation every day.”

RR:  The first time you touched the ball on a kickoff return during a regular season NFL game, you took it 77 yards which set up a Falcons FG.  Walk us through what you saw when you caught the ball?

JR:  “First of all, I bobbled the ball.  By the time I got control of it and started running, I saw this huge hole on the right side and just hit it.”

RR:  Let’s switch gears.  What’s the vacation destination anywhere in the world that you plan to visit within the next three years?

JR: “Paris, France.  It’s a great place, I am told, and it looks really nice on TV.”

RR:  What’s the last book you read?

JR: “The Energy Bus.”

RR:  Why that book?

JR:  “Because Coach Smith said we all had to read it.”

RR:  Paula Patton or Halle Berry?

JR: “Paula Patton.”

RR:  How many songs are on your iPod and give me your three favorite artists?

JR:  “I have more than 1,000 and my favorite artists are Meek Mill, Plies, and Lil’ Wayne.”

RR:  What was your welcome to the NFL moment last season as a rookie?

JR:  “When I picked up the first down at Detroit that allowed us to ice the game and beat the Lions.”

RR:  I have to ask you this.  Rookies have to go through the rituals of being in the NFL and one of those is to bring the veterans chicken on team road trips.  How much money did you spend on the chicken as a rookie and was that a big pain in the butt for you?

JR:  “I am told that bringing the veterans chicken is a rite of passage in the NFL so I really didn’t mind.  I think I spent about $120 bucks a week so we had 11 road trips last season so I guess I spent right at $1,300.  It’s not the money that’s the worse part…it’s delivering the chicken to all of your guys on the plane.  Guys are moving around and the plane is crowded back in the back where the players are.  Carrying the huge box of chicken on the plane for every road trip wasn’t a lot of fun, either.”

RR:  The word on the street is that you are very tight and guarded with your bread.  In fact, my crack research indicates that you are so tight that you still might not have cashed some of your Pell Grant checks from your days at Oregon State.  Any truth there?

JR:  “I still live like I’m kind of broke.  I’m careful.  I do research, and I just don’t spend money when I don’t have to.”

RR:  Do you do your own grocery shopping, your own laundry, and do you clean your own house?

JR:  “Yes to all three of those questions.”

RR:  How good can this team be this season?

JR:  “I think we can be really good.  We have a lot of weapons on offense.”

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