After Wednesday’s practice at the Poe Indoor Practice Facility in Clemson, linebacker Isaiah Simmons explained why he did not enter his name into the 2019 NFL draft.
“I wanted to come back and be the most dominant person at my position in the whole country,” he said. “I wanted to come back and let everyone know there is no doubt.”
The junior said he wanted to prove himself this year and leave no doubt in anyone’s mind he was one of the best. He also said this is his year to be a leader and to take the young players under his wing.
Simmons on why he did not enter the NFL draft
“It’s not really a big deal, but to me I didn’t make any honorable mentions, first teams, seconds team, or anything. Growing up I’ve always been one of the top guys at everything I’ve done, so I took all of that personal. I wanted to come back and be the most dominant person at my position in the whole country, so there would be no doubt about anything. I feel like throughout the year people said ‘oh he can’t cover’ and ‘he can’t do this, can’t do that’. I wanted to come back and let everyone know there is no doubt.”
Simmons on being a leader
“I’ve got to be more of a vocal guy. Last year I just did my thing, and let those guys lead. Being an older guy on the team now I’ve got to step up and be more of a vocal person.”
Simmons on there being no drop off at the linebacker position
“Everyone had a lot of playing time last year. Shaq (Smith) is a really smart guy. (James) Skalski is a smart guy…Chad Smith even. Everyone is a smart player. Everyone takes their role so serious and wants to be the best version they can possibly be. With that, I don’t think their can be a drop off because we won’t allow it.’’
How Simmons helps the younger players
“I bring them in to watch film with me. I get them thinking right first before they start playing right. I show them the way of life they have to do. Not what you want to do, but what you have to do. It’s tough but they’re leaning. They’re learning fast.”
Simmons on Mike Jones
“He’s like my little brother. I want him to prevail just like I am. Every day after practice, we stay and do work together. We come in and watch film together. I want him to see what it takes to play at a high level.”
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