Versatility is the word that comes to mind when I watch Jared Odrick play. Odrick showed throughout his career at Penn State that he can be a disruptive force along the defensive line and he displayed the ability to line up as a 4-3 defensive tackle or 3-4 defensive end while at the Senior Bowl. Jared and I talked about where he fits in best in the NFL and how he found out about his Senior Bowl invitation. Read below for the transcript of our conversation.
Spencer: So far, how’s your Senior Bowl experience been?
Odrick: It’s been good. Busy. With all the testing, interviews and practice. But it’s been an experience so far.
Spencer: Have you had a chance to sit down with any NFL teams yet?
Odrick: Yeah, yeah. Quite a few.
Spencer: What’s the oddest thing the scouts have asked you so far?
Odrick: I really haven’t been asked anything out of the ordinary yet, but I know they’re coming. I know those questions are coming.
Spencer: When you were invited to come play at the Senior Bowl, was there ever a doubt in your mind that you’d participate? Or was it something you had to give a lot of thought to?
Odrick: In terms of an invitation, I’d go to my d-line coach, Coach Johnson. I’d go up to him and ask him, ‘Hey, I’ve got something from other all-star games. Should I respond, should I give an answer, what should I do?’ There was a time where he was like ‘we’ll have our talk, we’ll have our talk,’ and he kept pushing it off. I think he was withholding the invitation that I got, I think because he wanted me to work for it like I did in my Senior year. I think that’s the way it came off, but I never asked. I think he received it, he just never told me about it. He just wanted to wait for the right time. But the day I got it was the day I responded.
Spencer: Who’s the toughest lineman you’ve had to face so far this week?
Odrick: Toughest? There was a pretty tough double team I had to face today between [Mike] Iupati and Sam Young. I pride myself in handling double teams and facing them head on and either trying to split them or hold them. But it was pretty tough today. I lost my footing and those two guys got the best of me.
Spencer: Turning to your side of the ball, who have you been playing beside that has really stood out to you?
Odrick: Cal, [Tyson] Alualu. He’s really good with his hands. Very good with his hands, shedding people. I’ve watched him a few times on TV but I was more impressed here in person. But I’ve been playing beside Cam Thomas of North Carolina, so I can’t really watch him. But I’ve been watching Alualu and been really impressed.
Spencer: What would you say is the strongest aspect of your game that you’d bring to an NFL team?
Odrick: It’s hard to talk about yourself because I always think that I have so much to work on.
Spencer: Well look at it this way. If a team was watching you on film, how would they game plan against you?
Odrick: Double team me. I think that’s one thing. I’m the type of player that commands a double team. I guess that’s one thing I would write down if I was a scout. There’s not many times throughout a game that I’m not double team. There wasn’t many times throughout my whole Senior season. I think I’m the type of player that left in single blocking, I’m gonna disrupt plays or go make a play. So I’d probably have to say that.
Spencer: Where do you think you’d fit in best in the NFL? A one gap defensive tackle or a 5 technique in a 3-4 defense?
Odrick: I’d say a 3 or a 5 technique. I think I can play in multiple schemes, to tell you the truth, and I’ve been hearing the same thing from NFL teams. So it will be interesting to see where I eventually land.
Spencer: Jared, I appreciate you taking your time out to talk to me.
Odrick: Thank you.