April 11, 2007

Echols working toward his NFL dream

Former Kansas State defensive tackle Quintin Echols observed his first spring practice last Thursday. He was plenty used to the sights and sounds. He'd been there so many times before. Now Echols, who used an impressive Pro Day to improve upon his testing times at the NFL Combine, awaits his future, which, as he says in this Q&A, hopefully involves playing on Sundays.

What exactly has this offseason been like with the NFL draft approaching?

I've just been working out really hard and doing some serious diets. It's different in the NFL than in college. In college you always get a chance to get a second chance, but with the NFL it's all about doing everything right the first time. When I trained at Cleveland, we did five hours of workout and then another five hours of some kind of rehab and tests, mental training and things like that, every day. It's really tough, but it's something you've got to do, especially if you want to make it to the next level and get paid for what you've been doing for five years.

What has been your biggest improvement during the offseason and how do you think you fared in the recent Pro Day at K-State?

Probably my conditioning improved the most. That's about it. I can't play football right now, so it's all about conditioning, you know, keeping my focus on something totally different than football right now. I feel I did pretty good at the Pro Day (see chart). I went to the NFL Combine and my left knee, the one that kept me from playing in the bowl game, wasn't 100 percent healthy, so I didn't do a lot of things and needed to have a good Pro Day. As it turned out, I had a really good Pro Day. All of the scouts talked to coach Ron Prince and coach Mo Latimore. Coach Prince and coach Mo both said they had nothing but good things to say about me, so I think it went pretty well.

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