For a player like Phazahn Odom, you just want a chance. A chance to prove yourself at the next level, and when Odom got a contract from the Pittsburgh Steelers after his try out at rookie minicamp, he had to be excited. However, in the back of his mind he had to think his best chance at making an NFL team would be through the practice squad.
Then the team releases Ladarius Green. Suddenly, Odom’s chances just increased tremendously, and the 6-feet 8-inch tight end might have a renewed sense of self heading into the team’s Organized Team Activities (OTAs) this Tuesday.
BTSC was able to obtain a one-on-one interview with Odom through part-time contributor to the site Kelly Anozie (Twitter Handle: @kanozie80). Thanks Kelly for the hard work, and everyone can check out the interview below:
As you probably heard, Ladarius Green, the Steelers primary Tight End was just released today. This no doubt opens the window of opportunity for yourself or any Tight End to make the Steelers roster. Do you believe that you are the Tight End that can take Ladarius' place and why?
Those are big shoes to fill. He's a great player and when he was active, he was one of the top TEs in the NFL. I do not think that I am a Ladarius Green but I do believe I can be an effective red zone target and another receiving threat at TE.
What aspects are you looking to improve before the beginning of camp in August?
As I enter camp I look to improve my blocking technique, become functionally stronger, and learn more about the offense.
In 2012 while at Fortham, you missed an entire year due to an injury. What it is the mental process that you go through to stay motivated when you miss an entire year?
That year I've learned that patience and hard work goes a long way. Missing an entire year can be viewed as a set back or you can use it to get ahead of everyone for that following year.
Do you believe your basketball background puts you at an advantage over all the rest of the Tight Ends trying to make the Steelers roster?
I think that my basketball background makes me fun to watch but there is more to playing TE than catching balls at it's highest point. When it comes to making the roster, it is who can offer more on not just offense but other places like special teams.
Coming into training camp, who is the one Steelers player that you're looking forward to learning from and why?
I never really thought about who I would love to learn from. I've just been trying to absorb everything in my playbook.
What does an opportunity to play for the Steelers organization represent to you?
This is a golden opportunity for me. The Steelers organization has such a winning and positive atmosphere and is historically one of the best teams in the NFL. To be apart of a program like this is a wonderful opportunity .
Stay tuned to BTSC as the team heads into OTAs this week, as well as throughout the rest of the offseason.