Who doesn't like a massive beard worthy of its own zip code?
[image via bleacherreport.net]
A year ago, Washington Redskins defensive tackle Chris Neild was living in Morgantown, West Virginia, playing for the Mountaineers and plowing through college offensive lines with beard neatly fitted on face.
This year, however, the 6’2, 319-lb. rookie, and his immense face sweater, is adjusting to life as a professional in the NFL.
With the assistance of Brian Tinsman, who works in the front office for the Washington Redskins and owner Dan Snyder as team's chief blogger, I was able to speak with Neild to discuss his transition from WVU into the pros.
Q: Tell me about the transition from college to the pros?
Neild: It is a lot different coming to this level. The speed of the game is twice is fast. More than that. For some people it takes a lot of time to get used to, but some people adjust very quick. So it’s just a matter of a person’s learning curve and just trying to get acclimated to a system that they are in.
Q: What was the first adjustment you had to make?
Neild: When I first got here it was trying to get used to the speed and I think I did a good job adjusting. But you really have to get in the film room as well to stay ahead of your opponent. Sometimes in college you could slack on watching film because you might be playing lesser opponents. But at this level there’s no way you can do that. You can’t go a week without watching film and be ready for an opponent. They’ll take advantage of whatever they can see.
Q: How did the lockout affect your transition?
Neild: I knew it was going to be a crash course with the lockout this year and coming into training camp I didn’t know what to expect. I just wanted to get in there and give it my best and thus far it’s been a really good experience and I’m learning every day.
Q: How has your beard adjusted to all of the change?
Neild: It's actually trimmed now. It was much bigger but I had to take it down a few notches.