Interview: Danario Alexander
A physically imposing player at 6’4 5/8″ and 221 lbs, Danario Alexander led the nation in receiving yards for 2009. The Senior Bowl was his opportunity to show the NFL that he could play with the big boys. Unfortunately, an injury slowed him down at the end of the week and he wasn’t able to shine in the game as he would have hoped. What stood out most to me while watching Alexander during practice was just how hard he was working. I could tell that Danario was doing everything possible to make his routes crisper and he wasn’t afraid to put his body on the line for passes. I sat down with Danario early in the week at the Senior Bowl and we talked about what he wanted to show in Mobile and what players he hopes to emulate once he’s in the league.
Spencer: Overall, how has your Senior Bowl experience been?
Alexander: It’s been pretty good. It’s a different type of deal. I’m walking around and I’m always getting pulled different directions by scouts or whatever. So it’s a pretty big deal for me right now.
Spencer: So you’ve had a chance to talk to all the NFL teams?
Alexander: Yeah, I’ve been interviewing with guys every time I’m in the lobby. I’ve had at least 20 meetings already which is kind of crazy. I’ve got more lined up when I get back tonight.
Spencer: Any particular teams showing a little more interest than others?
Alexander: It’s kind of hard to tell at this point. They all basically want to know the same things. They want to know about your history and everything about your life. And they’re asking me about my knee a lot.
Spencer: How is the knee, by the way?
Alexander: It’s doing pretty good. Doing pretty good.
Spencer: What’s the oddest question the scouts have asked you so far?
Alexander: I haven’t really got to the weird questions yet. Everything’s been pretty basic so far.
Spencer: While you’ve been in practice, what corners have given you the toughest time in passing or team drills?
Alexander: I think the guy from Boise State [Kyle Wilson]. He’s pretty good. He’s a smart player. He can sit on a lot of routes and we’ve been running a lot of comebacks, so he doesn’t sit on those, but he’s a pretty good player.
Spencer: Looking at your side of the ball, who has impressed you on offense this week?
Alexander: I think Jacoby Ford. I think he’s really showing his talents. He caught a lot of balls today. He’s shown everyone that he can play for a small guy.
Spencer: What would you say is the strongest aspect of your game?
Alexander: Being physical. Catching the ball and after the catch. Yards after the catch is a big thing for me. I try to get to the endzone every time I catch the ball.
Spencer: Do you have a specific route you like to run or a particular area of the field that you like to work?
Alexander: I actually like to work the middle. A lot of guys catch the ball and look around but I like to catch the ball and get up field as fast as I can. And you can make a lot of guys miss like that.
Spencer: You led the nation in receiving yards this year, you have all the physical attributes scouts look for, so does it bother you that you aren’t being mentioned along side players like Dez Bryant as the top wide receivers in this class?
Alexander: That’s something I can’t focus on too much. I’ve gotta come out and have a good week this week and put my name out there. I’m pretty sure the scouts see what they need to see. So I’ve just gotta play my best right now to show everyone that I can play.
Spencer: So how important do you think this week is for your draft stock?
Alexander: It’s very important. I’ve gotta come out and show everyone that I can run routes and catch balls and that I’m an all around receiver.
Spencer: What would you say you have to work on the most?
Alexander: Probably just coming out of my breaks a little quicker. Everything else is pretty much polished and good for me right now.
Spencer: Did you have a particular NFL team that you follow or is it going to be “whatever team drafts me, I’m gonna love!”
Alexander: Pretty much, but I grew up a Cowboys fan. I grew up around that area but right now, I’m a fan of every team until draft day.
Spencer: Do you have a particular wide receiver that you grew up watching and tried to model your style of play after?
Alexander: I kind of like watching Moss and T.O. I kind of want to try to mix those two guys and be somewhere in the middle. Be able to catch those deep balls and be as explosive as T.O. is.
Spencer: What are you looking forward to the most in the draft process?
Alexander: I’m looking forward to hearing my name on draft day, of course. That’s my dream. I’ve been playing football my whole life and for them to call my name on draft day, that’d be the biggest thing for me.
Spencer: Thanks a lot Danario, I appreciate your time.