Let me lead into this by saying that Devin Danielson is clearly a man of few words. Not that that is a bad thing. His answers were straight and to the point, which is what you’d expect from a hardworking, blue-collar Pittsburgh guy.
Devin played 238 snaps last season and graded out at 68.7, which is knocking on the door of “above average” as far as Pro Football Focus grades go. He’s supposedly got the inside track on the starting defensive tackle job for Pitt to replace Jaylen Twyman. Generally speaking Danielson’s run defense was better than his pass rush last season (as long as PFF grading is concerned), and that’s actually not a bad thing if Pitt has three other pass rushers on the line. I’m looking for Devin to take the next step this year if he breaks into the starting lineup. Here are the nuts and bolts of his interview:
On what he learned from Bill Cherpak (his high school coach: I learned a lot. How to work hard.
What are some examples of hard work: Running hills. Doing ladders. Just conditioning every day.
As a Pittsburgh guy, you’d expect Danielson to have a strong work ethic. I don’t think there are any surprises here. This is one of the reasons why I think we should expect him to improve.
On his thoughts when Jaylen Twyman opted out: I was a little confused at first, but I understand why he did it, and I wish him the best of luck and it just created an opportunity for me and all the D tackles.
On what it was like playing behind Jaylen: He really taught me how to watch film. How to truly watch film. Dive into the smallest details in a o linemen’s stance, the keys to a good get off and a whole bunch of things.
This is not be underrated, and is one of those intangibles that sets guys like Twyman and Aaron Donald apart from the rest.
Some things he needs to work on: Just mainly footwork and getting the fundamentals sound and consistent.
Spoken like a true student of the game.
How does it feel about knowing who the first opponent will be: Very excited.
Did I mention he was a man of few words? But really, what else are you going to say here?
What’s it like to have a bunch of experienced guys on the D Line: I learn something new every day.
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