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Q&A with LB Rolando McClain



Alabama linebacker Rolando McClain was one of the top performers at his position during his college career. Get to know more about him by reading his comments to the media at the 2010 NFL Scouting Combine.**

Q: Since you've been at the Combine, have you talked to many teams about your game?A: In the interviews, they have told me they like my smarts, they like the way I play.

Q: Do you know which linebacker position you would play in the NFL?A: I don't really know yet. They haven't said. That's up to them. All I can do is play and do my best. I play with a middle linebacker mentality. It's what I'm comfortable with.

Q: Do you feel suited for a 3-4 defensive scheme?A: I played the 4-3 (defense) in high school. I played the 3-4 (defense) and it was a lot better than the 4-3. Under Coach (Nick) Saban, he taught me a lot.

Q: Were you better in the 4-3 defense?A: I was better in the 3-4, I think.

Q: Do you pattern your game after any particular linebacker?A: I love Ray Lewis. I like the way he plays the game. He's one of the best to ever play linebacker. Not just his play, but the way he's able to get the guys up. He's inspirational and he's a real leader. That's why I pride myself after him.

Q: How did Nick Saban help you prepare for the NFL?
A: He coached in the NFL. He knows what it takes to be great. I think me playing under Coach Saban kind of gave me an advantage, especially playing in his 3-4. His 3-4 is so complicated. He's one of the best defensive minds. I learned so much from him.

Q: What are your thoughts on potentially starting as a rookie?
A: I've been doing this since my freshman year. This is something I'm used to; I'm used to being the leader on defense as a "Mike" linebacker, the quarterback of the defense. The things I've done in college will carry over to the pros. We kind of talked about some of those things. It's something I'm used to it's because I've been doing it for three years.



Q: What will help you be a defensive leader as a rookie?**A: I'm a leader. I had to lead seniors as a freshman. My biggest thing is wanting to win. So if I have to be a leader in order for us to win, that's what I'll do, no matter the circumstance.

Q: What was the key to getting seniors to listen?A: A lot of guys saw the way I worked and they admired the way I worked, so it really wasn't that hard. It was tough sometimes, but they admired me. They actually listened.

Q: Did you think at all about coming back to Alabama for your senior year?
A: When I came into college, I had goals. I accomplished all of those goals and I led a team to a national championship and an undefeated season. What better way to go out?

Q: Will you be playing on third downs in the NFL?A: Obviously, I can do it. I did it in college. I never came off the field. I guarded running backs, tight ends, and slot receivers. Obviously, the guys in the NFL are a little bit better but I know I can do it.

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