With the Buccaneers likely in the market for a defensive end this April, PewterReport.com chose to feature an edge rusher at both opening practices. While the East West Shrine event typically consists of late-round draftees, a few players might be worth keeping an eye on as potential late targets for Tampa Bay.
On Monday, Penn State’s Anthony Zettel turned in a good first practice. The 6-foot-4, 284-pound defensive lineman finished his senior season with 46 tackles and four sacks after transitioning from an end to a tackle. In 2014 he intercepted three passes, including a pick-six against Ohio State, and became the first defensive lineman since 1959 to tie for the team-lead in INTs. Considered a “tweener” along the D-Line by many, the versatile lineman is confident he can play multiple positions at the next level, even linebacker.
Photo: Eric Dellaratta/PR
Below is the transcript of his interview.
Anthony Zettel, DL Penn State
(On his first day)
“It was alright, kind of slippery out here. Just trying to get my feet under me and play a little lower.”
(On if he’s better fit for DT or DE)
“Wherever they want me. I feel comfortable at both.”
(On martial arts background)
“It helps me a lot with my hands. I have to get better after today; I missed my hands a few times, which is rare. But other than that, it just helps with hand-eye coordination.”
(On preference in 43 or 34 defense)
“I don’t care, wherever they want me. I’m definitely comfortable in 4-3, that’s what I played through college. But I feel like I could play linebacker in a 3-4, or 5-tackle, wherever they need me.”
(On if playing Big 10 offensive linemen helps his transition to NFL)
“It’s just a constant – week after week of solid O-Lineman that come out and hit you. It’s a big boy football game in the Big 10, so just having experience in the Big 10 playing inside and outside is definitely benefitial.”
(On playing big Michigan State offensive linemen, like Jack Conlin and Jack Allen)
“Those guys, they come out and they’re just tough dudes. Their whole O-Line works as a unit, so when you have a bunch of big athletes and tough guys working as a unit, it’s tough competition.”
(On Penn State DE Carl Nassib)
“He’s a great player. Obviously winning the Lombardi Award is special. He has a lot of skills and physical attributes that make it hard for people to block him.”
(On impression of DE Victor Ochi from Stony Brook, teammate on East Team)
“Pretty good. He plays really well and has long arms, gets after it. We haven’t watched film yet so it’s hard to tell.”
Zach is entering his 3rd year covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a writer for PewterReport.com. Since 2014, he's handled a large part of the beat reporting responsibilities at PR, attending all media gatherings and publishing and promoting content daily. Zach is a native of Sarasota, FL, and a graduate of the University of Tampa. He has also covered high school football for the Tampa Tribune and the NFL for Pro Player Insiders.
Contact him at: [email protected]
how’s brian poole looking? think he is a very versatile corner… played nickel, corner & some safety at florida of course i’m bias, he’s the son of an old friend of mine & i’ve known him since he was a kid
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