The Washington Commanders' newest running back, Chris Rodriguez Jr., spoke with the media earlier today. Here are some of the highlights from his press conference.
On it feels to get drafted:
"Feels good, man. I'm excited. Ready to get to work, man. I mean, it's one of those moments I waited for my whole life, man. It feels almost unrealistic almost, man. I'm ready to get to it."
On what was going through his mind when we got the call:
"Honestly, today it was like, I had family members calling me and everything, and I was like all right, y'all gotta stop calling me. Like I'm waiting for a call, so my heart kept dropping and dropping and I got that call. Everybody's looking at me, I'm just thinking like, ah, man, here it goes and then everybody has their phone out. For me it was just like, it was just exciting but at the same time, it's business. I'm ready to get to work. I'm ready to get to it."
On if he knows RB Antonio Gibson:
"AG, he was a senior when I was a freshman. I looked up to him kind of, I would say when I was a freshman because when we played him, he was the guy on their team. He was one of those guys from my hometown that I followed. I don't keep in touch with him, but I watch everything he does if he knows it or not."
On if it's surreal being reunited with Gibson now:
"Honestly, yes. Who would've thought that I would be playing with him, especially when I was younger watching him destroy us. I mean, my team wasn't that good. They were extremely good, but no, watch him destroy us. Who would've ever thought that I would be playing next to him?"
On if he knows LB Jamin Davis:
"Jamin my boy. When I first got to Kentucky, Jamin, he kind of kept me above float. I was always in my head about not playing, but he was always saying like, Peach State pride. It's what he always used to say. I was one of the few Georgia boys on the team. At Kentucky, it was mostly Ohio and not Georgia. So when I got there, it was him, Yusuf [Corker] and we stayed Peach State pride and we kinda lived by it and kept working."
On why Marshawn Lynch is one of his role models:
"When I was growing up, I was watching Marshawn and he was that guy for me. I couldn't tell you why. I just liked the way he played football. Ever since then, I was like, all right, I need number 24. So, I couldn't tell you why him, but definitely him. He's him."
On how he wants to make an impact on this team:
"Yeah, I just wanna show them that I'm willing to do anything. Not only am I willing to be a running back, I'm willing to be a great teammate, willing to be on special teams, any special teams at that, and I'm gonna give him my best 24/7. There's not gonna be a day that I take a day off. I'm not gonna take a rep off. Like, this is something I've been dreaming for my whole life and it's coming true, so it's time to get to it."
On what this means to him with his mom passing in January:
"It means a lot. I tell everybody, like my mom, she's my biggest motivation in life. It's hard I'm not sharing this moment with her, but I know she's looking down. She's proud of me and I continue to make her proud."
On what family members are with him today:
"Man, it's a lot. I tell you that it's a lot. It's a lot of people in there. I got my dad, aunts, uncles fiancé, her family, cousins. Man, you go down the list, it's a lot of them. If I could pinpoint a few, I would, but it's none that stand out more than the other."
On how many people are there:
"Probably like 50, I guess I would say maybe more. And then got some on the way that some teammates that were driving from different schools that had transferred out, they're all on the way here. Some people that weren't able to get here in time, they're on the way. High school coaches on the way. So yeah, I mean, it's a lot of us here. A lot of people are gonna be here tonight. I've already got a lot of messages and everything's like, man, I can't go through all that stuff, but we're gonna get through it."
On who called him:
"I think it was him [Eric Bieniemy] at the time. I was like, I just blanked out and the moment it was just like, it was like, Hey, as Washington Commanders we're gonna, our pick is coming up. We want you and everything just blanked out. I had cameras in my face and phones blowing up everybody. Somehow people knew before it came on tv. Don't know how, but if I could give you a pinpoint name, I would, but at the same time, I can't."
On if he knew the Commanders were interested in him:
"No, but at the same time, I didn't know who was interested in me. I just knew whoever it was gonna be is gonna get the best me. I'm ready to get to work, ready to play, man."