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2013 NFL Draft: transcript of teleconference with Browns third-round pick Leon McFadden

By Ryan Lewis Published: April 26, 2013

The Browns took San Diego St. cornerback Leon McFadden in the third round (No. 68 overall) of the NFL Draft on Friday night. McFadden spoke with reporters via telephone. 

On being drafted - I’m very excited. Words can’t explain how excited I am to be a part of the Cleveland Browns organization. I’m looking forward to working my butt off on the field and helping the team get wins.

On a personal scouting report - I believe my ball skills are very good, my man-to-man coverage, I became a lot more aggressive in the last couple years. My IQ for football, studying my opponent is really big for me. The main thing I would like to work on is my press man and polishing up my technique and keeping my eye discipline.

On being on the Browns rader and being a starter - I didn’t really speak to the Cleveland Browns. This was a big surprise to me. I didn’t talk to them much, probably some basic questionnaires. Other than that I didn’t know their interest in me at all.

Did Brian Sipe put in a good word? -  Probably so. I just thought about that when I got the phone call, the first guy who came to my mind was Brian Sipe, him being part of the organization.

On his height against taller receivers - I don’t look at it as a problem, I’m a competitor and I don’t think my height has anything to do with me and my competitiveness playing.

On the switch from wide receiver his freshman year -  At first I was kind of bitter about it. When I went to school I wanted to play receiver, I wanted to score touchdowns. My coach Brady Hoke at the time gave me a three-day tryout at corner. Ever since I went there I never looked back and I believe it was the best decision I ever could have made. I don’t regret it at all.

On how he's able to compete against bigger, stronger receivers -  Just playing attention to my technique and playing my game and being competitive out there. That’s what it comes down to, how competitive you want to be in between the lines. That’s something I’m looking forward to, the challenge. There’s different types of challenges.

On where he's watching the draft - I’m in Anaheim, Calif. at the ESPN Zone. I had a strong feeling that I would be going this day, but I didn’t know where I would end up. It was a surprise with the Cleveland Browns, but I’m excited. Words can’t explain it.

On his dad's ties to baseball and if there was pressure to play baseball - Growing up the first sport I ever played was baseball. I did all sports growing up, but my dad never pushed me into just playing baseball. He wanted me to live the dream I wanted to do, the sport I wanted to play and football was the sport I wanted to play. I went with it and he supported it. Both parents were really big on education and then sports. Baseball was not pressured on me.

On who contacted him - I talked to one of the West Coast scouts probably at the Senior Bowl or just did a questionnaire for them at the Senior Bowl. I talked a little bit at the combine.

On his Dad's influence: My dad had a big influence on me. He always pushed me to my fullest potential and he supported everything I did. He was hard on me to an extent. He wants what every father wants, play your best and play hard and always give your all in any challenge, anything you’re doing.

On the ESPN Zone: It’s a good amount of people, family and good friends. Nothing too big, nothing too fancy. I just wanted to wanted to be around my family at this time.

On his dad's advice during transition to being a pro athlete - He spoke to me a little bit about how to carry yourself, not as a collegiate athlete, now this is your profession, you have to carry yourself in a different manner. He’s given me tips on that.

On his size compared to Joe Haden - Joe Haden is a great corner. I’ve seen some clips of him back when he was at Florida and a couple plays in the NFL. He’s a competitor and about the same size. I thin I can add to that as a DB, you want to win every battle. It will be a good addition.

Any plans for a celebration in the event of a touchdown on an interception return - (he laughs) I haven’t thought about any touchdown celebrations at all right now.

On his prediction for the future -  I believe I’m going to be a competitor in the NFL; I’m going to try to better myself every time I hit the field. My career in the NFL, I’m going to work hard and have a successful one.

On his strengths -  My instincts and my ball skills would be the biggest thing.

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