General Manager Thomas Dimitroff
What was the rationale in drafting Sean Weatherspoon?**
"The rationale was that he was a guy that we had targeted all along. We were very excited to have the opportunity to take an outside linebacker that is going to ramp up our speed, our enthusiasm and our athleticism. In our minds he is a guy that is going to be a four-down player for us."
How much did it help seeing what Sean was able to do while you were looking at William Moore last year?
"It plays into it. You always keep your eyes open on the whole field and Sean was a guy who definitely stood out in having an opportunity seeing them play together. It was ironic, that was not something that drove this decision obviously, but it will be interesting to see how the two of them interact together on this football team."
How important was it to get a play-maker in the first round?
"I think that as Mike (Smith) and I talked about the ramped up enthusiasm we believe he will bring to this rather young defense, I believe that he will fit in very well at so many different levels. The fact that you get a linebacker who has versatility is very, very important for this defense. That is very encouraging going forward."
How different was it having the NFL Draft in primetime on Thursday night?
"Honestly, we were quite focused on the draft. It was a little bit of a sidebar for us. We were very involved in discussions along the way with the Broncos about possibly shifting around. In our minds, philosophically we felt that we were very zeroed in on Sean Weatherspoon and we did not want to try to be cute and creative and lose a guy that we were focused on. We decided to pull that tag off the board very aggressively at pick 19."
What point where you zeroed in on Sean Weatherspoon?
"There were a handful of guys that we were interested in. That handful happened to be three players and he was one of the three. Sean was top of the charts of the three that we had in our handful. It was one of those situations that we felt we might as well capitalize on instead of trying to move back and hoping that he would be there four or five picks later."
Did William (Moore) give you any insight into Sean the person, not just the player?
"You always seek insight from teammates. It is not something that is the end all obviously, but it is always important to discuss interaction and how people get along. It was not one of those things that would have killed the deal so to speak, but William was very positive. I know that through our interviews with Sean throughout the spring that he was very positive about having the opportunity to work side by side with William Moore."
Are you still hopeful to move into the Second Round of the Draft tomorrow? Are you receiving any calls?
"We are getting calls, we have gotten calls prior to the draft, and we still have opportunities possibly. It is just a matter of us determining whether it is worth the movement. It is going to be quite rich to move up into the middle to the back third. We just need to determine if that is worthy of our movement given the players that will be available at that time. This is not necessarily going to be a busy night, but a busy day tomorrow through discussion and possible interaction with a lot of teams that might want to move out of that area in the second round."
Did the draft room take a close look at Georgia Tech wide receiver Demaryius Thomas?
"We were out at his workout in full form the other day and unfortunately he was not able to run his routes in full. Obviously, things worked out very well for him with Denver. It is always tempting when you have an athlete that is that size, has that speed and has the ability to have an impact. He has the ability to jump over the smaller defensive backs in this league, so there is no question that we contemplated. In our mind, as I mentioned before, we definitely are needs based. We have spent a lot of money on Roddy White and Mike Jenkins to be our guys and we are excited about where we are with the recovery of Harry Douglas. In our minds he was not as pressing of a need as what we have at this point."
**Anything surprise you about the first round?
**"I think it fell into place, for the most part, as we had expected. There were a couple of spots here and there, where we did not expect teams would take a player. I think that in the end, our idea was making sure that we analyzed what their needs may be and I think the teams that stepped out of line were picking the best player available on the board at that point. Those were usually the ones that were more surprising."
**Were you surprised that Pittsburgh took Pouncey at pick 18? Was he someone that you were high on?
**"He was another guy that was definitely a consideration for us. He was one of the scenarios that we looked very closely at. I had a discussion with Kevin Colbert at Pittsburgh and I knew that they were very zeroed in on a player. I had assumed that Pouncey was their player, so it was not something that I really thought would come into fruition for us. In the end if he were to be sitting there at the same time as Sean, we would have picked Sean."
MORE ON WEATHERSPOON:**
BIO:Weatherspoon's bio on AF.com * PHOTOS:Images of new Falcon Sean Weatherspoon * VIDEO:NFL Network highlights of Weatherspoon* *
YOUTUBE:Universal Draft Presents * YOUTUBE: Sean Weatherspoon "Right Now" * YOUTUBE: Post-Practice Interview * YOUTUBE: A Day in the Life -- Sean Weatherspoon* *
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