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Transcript: Everything Said During D'Wayne Eskridge's NFL Draft Press Conference

WR D'Wayne Eskridge speaks with Seattle media for the first time on Day 2 of the 2021 NFL Draft.


WR D'Wayne Eskridge, Western Michigan

On what made him think Seattle would be a good fit for him:

"I had a lot of great interviews with pretty much all the staff. Just going through it, they made me feel more comfortable when it comes to being taken care of when I come to Seattle. I know I'll be able to come in there and get better and won't have to worry too much about the nonsense. I felt that energy directly. It's just great to be able to go into something that's already written because me saying that, I put that energy into the world and obviously it's already been written as I'm a Seahawk and all. I'm definitely grateful for it."

On what it's like coming from a small high school with not many college offers and becoming a second round pick:

"It's crazy. I wouldn't want it any other way. The things that I had to face and not be able to run from, it's definitely a blessing that I made it through all the obstacles that I did. I'm just thanking the man up above for all that he's provided me with. It's just the beginning, obviously. I'm going to keep it going for all the guys and girls to be inspired from little old Bluffton, Indiana and all the times at Fort Wayne to be able to do what they want to do. It was all the tests, all the hard work and dedication, that sacrifice."

On the disappointment in 2019 with the broken collarbone and the success in 2020:

"My injury of 2019 was probably the best and the worst thing to happen to me in football. I learned much more about myself. I learned that I was much more than a football player when it comes to what I want to do later in life. That helped me bring more love to the game. I just go out there and have fun. Do what I do best. I keep it at that and keep that the main thing. My injury helped me so much more than anything that I could have asked for because no one asks for an injury, but the things that came from that injury, it's priceless."

On who helped him during his rehab process:

"Sarah McBrien, she was the head trainer at Western Michigan. She always kept me up. She knew I was down because all I wanted to do was play football. It's pretty easy to tell how much I love the game of football so she always kept me up. My girlfriend (Arlexis Branson) was also a critical factor. Just being able to talk to her and her pick me up when I was down for sure during that injury. My core family, my mom, my uncle, my aunt, my grandmother, my siblings, some of my cousins stayed supportive throughout the whole process. I'm definitely blessed with the people in my life, they keep me up."

On how he thinks he'll fit in and help the Seahawks:

"I know about Russell Wilson, Tyler Lockett and then DK [Metcalf] so I'll just come in and bring more explosiveness to them. Those are all dogs that I mentioned. I'm also a dog so I feel like I'll be able to fit in pretty good and just take it to another level and do what I'm paid to do."

On what led to his offensive explosion last year:

"The whole season, I made a lot of sacrifices. I knew exactly what I needed to do when it came to my routines and taking care of my body, watching film. I just checked every single box this year. I just did everything that I needed to do and then when it came to the field, it wasn't anything new. I practiced some of the plays that were touchdowns this year that everyone thought was explosive. I was doing that exact thing in practice. It just translated right to the game. I kept it going the entire season."

On knowing someone's cousin who is on the team already:

"Yes sir. (Michael) Ledo, he's with my financial Rise team. It's a position coach I believe. I had some great conversations with them, it bonded well. I'm super excited about it, taking it out there."

On which position coach: "The receivers."

On the Seahawks talking to him about kick returning:

"Most definitely. Even if they didn't talk to me about playing special teams, I'm going in there and making a name for myself regardless."

On what led him to doing kickoff returns last year:

"It was other players, other greats that were there during my time out there. Darius Phillips that plays with the Bengals, he was a great returner. My senior year, I was playing both ways so they kind of wanted to take some of the stress off of me so they had LeVante Bellamy, he's with the Broncos. So we had some greats back there so they were trying to preserve me a bit more so that I could stay healthy during the season and not do too much because I was doing other special teams as well."

On if he's talking from Bluffton right now:

"No sir I'm in Battle Creek, Michigan."

On how much he played in the slot last year:

"I played about 85% into the boundary this year but the rest of that 15% I moved around from the slot to the field slot. I was pretty interchangeable this year."

On if the Seahawks had talked to him about what role they want him in:

"I just pretty much learned all three positions. That's how I learn concepts anyway to be able to move faster in the offense. We didn't really talk specifically about a position, we just talked about would I be able to retain everything to be able to play all three positions."

On how old he was when he moved from Mississippi to Indiana:

"I was young, I was in kindergarten so somewhere around whatever age that is."

Check out photos from the 2021 NFL Draft in Cleveland, Ohio.

On what it was like playing wide receiver and cornerback and what led him to playing wide receiver:

"It was a great experience. There was a select few that played that position in college football all time. There wasn't too many greats that just did it so I was walking in and trying to make a name for myself on the wide receiver side and on the [defensive back] side so it worked out well for me. I put in a lot of hard work to be able to get results. My senior year, I came back and I had a conversation with our head man and it was only right for me to go back to wide receiver. The way that I had progressed and learned so much from corner."

On how today went for him and if he expected Seattle to take him at 56:

"Definitely. As soon as I saw 56, as soon as I saw the Seahawks, I instantly knew. There was some type of energy that came over me and then once I saw the Washington number call me, I instantly stood up. I was so joyful. Now it's time to get to work."

On what he learned while playing cornerback that's helped him at wide receiver:

"It just really slowed the game overall for me. Whenever I'm going against a [defensive back], I always think to myself, what could make me uncomfortable if I was going against a receiver of my stature. I always put myself in that example and then just think of different things that would make me uncomfortable if I was playing corner. That helped me a lot going to the offensive side again in 2020."

On if it's intimidating to work with guys like DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett or does he view them as players he can grow with:

"I'm definitely not coming in with any type of pressure on myself. It's amazing that I made it to this point. I think I can remember in second grade of me dreaming about going into the NFL. Me just getting my jersey is what it's all about because I take opportunities very heavily. I'll always use the opportunity to my benefit. I'm going in to be able to learn from them and then add on to the leadership that they have in that room. Just take it to another level."

On the week of practices at the Senior Bowl and if he felt he had anything to prove there after going to a smaller school:

"Throughout this process, I didn't really put too much pressure on myself. I just kind of do what I do best. I always knew that I was one of the top tier guys. It was just certain times where I may not get as many opportunities as the guys at the bigger schools and stuff like that. I faced things head on so as soon as anyone lines up against me, I'm automatically thinking I can win. I'm not thinking about anything else. I just went down there to show who the real D'Wayne was since I didn't always have a camera on me."

On how he would describe his playing style:

"I would definitely say aggressive, explosive and dynamic. I can do multiple things on the offensive and defensive side. And I can also go and perform well on the special teams so I just bring a whole other juice."

On what he knows about Seattle and the fans here:

"I know nothing. I cannot wait to learn about it. I cannot wait to learn more about it."

On what made it about Seattle that made him want to come here:

"I just felt comfortable being in a good football position with them, more than anybody else that I talked to. They all kept it real with me. It was clear, uncut all the time. I just felt when it came to energies collide, I felt like it molded well instead of going the other way. So I always looked at them a little bit different than anybody else. I appreciated them for that."

On who wins a 40 yard dash between him and DK Metcalf:

"He's like a semi. He moves with a whole lot of velocity. I'm definitely going to run that race, although I'm not going to say he'll beat me in a race. We're going to take it there wherever it goes."

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