DT Malik McDowell (10.13.21)

On how he has played this season after returning to football:

“Last week was the first week I felt like I actually got my legs back. These last two practices the two weeks before have been my best practices. I am starting to really get the legs back so that is feeling good. Besides that, I am learning every day. Really just trying to get back to the natural movement, not thinking and playing football. I am getting better every day. I am not thinking as much definitely from when I first started playing ball. Definitely giving some situations a little more than I should. Working on my game still every day.”


On how he felt after playing more than 40 defensive snaps in Week 1:

“I felt good actually. I woke up feeling good. The body took a break. That was a long break. The first game did not really affect me too much. It took me a little minute – this is probably the sorest I have been after a game.”


On the next step for his game to reach the next level:

“Elevating. Just always elevating. Have to basically just make more plays. I just want to contribute more. Being in the right spots and doing what I have to do. Just learning the game more. I am learning more of the game like stances, backfields and stuff like that. I feel like that is going to help my game. That is what I am working on right now is learning the backfields, learning reading people’s stances and just hearing call outs and stuff like that. Just paying more attention on the field.”


On the experience of defensive line coach Chris Kiffin telling him he was making the team after the final preseason game against Atlanta:

“Kiff, it was after a game. I was on the phone talking to my mom. You just try to have a little private conversation. He was like, ‘What? Are you on the phone with your mom? Tell her you made the team?’ I am like no, I was not but I actually was (laughter). He called in the act telling her, and they had not told me yet but I kind of knew.”