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Fan Q&A: Eric Weddle
The Chargers traded up 25 spots in the second round of the 2007 NFL Draft to select safety Eric Weddle out of Utah.
After he racked up 135 tackles in 2008, Weddle followed with another productive season, posting 82 tackles, second on the team behind linebacker Stephen Cooper.
In Week 3 last season, Weddle all but finished the game against the Miami Dolphins when he intercepted Chad Henne and returned it 31 yards for a touchdown with just under six minutes remaining.
Weddle answered fan questions Thursday.
David Ewing; Carlsbad, Calif.
Do you see your role this year as being different from your previous years with the Chargers?
I’m a guy that’s been around for a little while now, which means I take on more of a leading role. It is up to Quentin Jammer and I to take ownership of the defense and teach the younger guys the ins and outs of the game.
Luke Sluiter; Byron Center, Mich.
How far along do you think the Chargers defense has come since last year, and how far do you think it could carry the team?
This is miles and miles from where our defense has been in the last couple of years. The continuity, the relationships, the communication and the fact that both the safeties and corners are better technically will contribute to a productive defense this year.
Mike Carpenter; Lakeside, Calif.
What do you do before a game to get fired up?
I don’t really get fired up. I like to stay cool, calm and collected (the three C’s). Aside from that I listen to a little music, go over my notes and make sure I’m as mentally prepared as I can be.
Laurie Dishon; Escondido, Calif.
What is your favorite thing to do outside of football?
I love playing with my kids, going to the movies, playing golf and camping every now and then.
B.J. Martinez; Delano, Calif.
After a few years under your belt, how has your leadership role changed?
Being in my fourth year I’ve seen and grown a lot. I have seen both big wins and big losses, and as a player I must learn to grow from both the positives and the negatives.
Alex Ballesteros; Puebla, Mexico
Being an NFL player is every football player’s dream, but what would you say is the hardest part about being one?
It’s not so hard. It’s a job in that the game requires so many hours, but this is a game that millions would love to play and I happen to be one of the lucky ones. This is the game I love. I take every play like it’s my last.
Jimmy Byeah; Centreville, Va.
What are the chances of this year’s team making it to the Super Bowl and what are some of the offseason changes that will help this team get there?
I think our chances are good. I think our team will be closer. I’ve seen our togetherness as a team and when we get into those close games I think we will be ready.
Daniel Humpal; Cedar Falls, Iowa
Do you try and emulate a certain defensive back on another team, and if so, who and why?
There are guys that I look up to, especially those who have been great players for many years. I look up to Jammer in a lot of ways in that he came into the league and struggled and then you see where he is today as one of the elite corners in the league.
Tadd Dolfo; San Diego
Is there any one hit that you have either given or received that you remember the most?
My rookie year when I sacked (Bears quarterback) Rex Grossman.
Gabrielle Osuna; San Diego
What is the first thing that comes through your mind as you run through the Chargers Helmet and are greeted by thousands of screaming fans?
The energy, the excitement and the opportunity of a lifetime definitely come to mind. You have to take that time and make the most of it and not take anything for granted.
Ryan Jones; Colorado Springs, Colo.
Where is your favorite place to eat in San Diego?
Mi Guadalajara in Escondido is one of my family’s favorites.