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Behind the Facemask: Robert McClain

Posted Nov 9, 2012

Atlanta Falcons vice president of football communications Reggie Roberts returns with his weekly Behind the Facemask feature. Today, Roberts spoke with cornerback Robert McClain.

Reggie Roberts:  Big stuff this weekend. Big game. Loud dome. Archrival Saints. Have you thought about what that atmosphere will be like this weekend in the “Big Easy?"

Robert McClain: I think it’s going to be a really good environment. We know it’s going to be loud because their fans really get into it. We’ve had a great week of practice, and we’re ready.

RR: Your name sounds so presidential. Do you have a nickname that your friends and family call you?

RM: Bobby Mac, Rob and McClain. Any of those three will do.

RR: Let’s talk about your NFL career. You were drafted by Carolina and have spent time with Jacksonville. This is your third NFL team. Would you like to stay here for a minute?

RM: I definitely want to stay here. This is a fantastic place. We’ve got great players, great coaches and I have learned since I’ve have been here. I’ve been blessed and I thank God for all he has given me since I’ve been here.

RR: Do you know how hard it is for free agents to make the rosters for NFL teams?

RM: I never looked at it like that. All I looked at was the opportunity. I knew that once I got on that field, I had a chance. That’s one of the things my college coach taught me. (McClain played at the University of Connecticut under former coach Randy Edsell). He taught me that the only thing I needed to concern myself with is  being ready. I felt like I had a chance (to make the Falcons roster) during the summer when we took that bus trip up the road to scrimmage and practice against Tennessee. We only had four corners that day, but I told myself that I was going to make the most of all of the repetitions in practice because all I wanted was a chance.

RR:  Not only did you make the team, you recorded your first career interception – on Monday Night Football – against future Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning.  What was that like?

RM: Again, it’s all about being ready. Every week, I prepare myself like I am going to start because in the NFL, you are only one play from being out on that field so you’ve got to stay ready.

RR:  What website do you visit every single day?

RM: CNN. It’s my home page. Since I was a political science major in college, I always check out CNN.com so I can stay up on what’s going on in the world, pop culture, music, travel, and all of the broad categories on that.

RR:  What’s Robert McClain like away from football?

RM: I’m laid back. I keep to myself. I’m kind of a quiet guy.

RR:  In your humble opinion, who is the best dressed Falcons player and who is the best dressed Falcons assistant coach?

RM: That’s an easy one. It’s Mike Pete (Falcons veteran LB Mike Peterson). Every week, he comes with something different, but it’s always, clean, classy and stylish. As far as the coaches, it’s a lot of sport coats so they all kind of blend in. Coach Nolan (Falcons defensive coordinator Mike Nolan) is probably the best dressed assistant coaches on our team.

RR:  I think I read someplace where you are a pretty decent artist. Do you draw or paint?

RM: I started in the fourth grade. Drawing and art runs in my family in that my uncle, my mother, and my brother all draw. I am interested in doing something with my drawing, and I am researching that aspect of art right now.

RR:  Who is your celebrity dream date with?

RM:  Eva Mendez

RR:  Last thing. You are hosting a dinner party. You can have five men and five women from any period of history. Who would you invite, where would the dinner be held, and what would you serve?

RM:  The five men would Robert McClain (Dad), Mark Smith (brother), movie director Spike Lee, and comedians Bernie Mac and Mike Epps.  The five women would be Belinda McClain (Mom), actress Eva Mendez, singer Alicia Keys, First Lady Michelle Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. We would have the dinner at a seafood restaurant somewhere in Rhode Island and we would serve seafood because I like lobster.


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