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Attaochu Already Soaking Up Knowledge

Posted May 13, 2014

Jerry Attaochu heeded Head Coach Mike McCoy’s words immediately by seeking out his veteran teammates.

The phone call letting you know you’ve been selected in the NFL Draft is one of the most anticipated moments in a football player’s life.

According to Jerry Attaochu, Head Coach Mike McCoy wasted no time telling him what a fortunate situation the outside linebacker found himself in after the Bolts traded up to take him with the 50th overall selection.  

“One of the first things he told me was I’m going to learn from some of the best in the game,” Attaochu said.  “He said it was a great opportunity to learn from guys like Dwight Freeney and the rest.  He said to make the most of it.”

So how quickly did it take Attaochu to heed his coach’s advice?

“Right away!” he said as his eyes lit up talking about his new teammates.  “I made sure I met them all. Dwight is a real cool guy.  He’s a great veteran who has been in the league for a long time and I know I can learn a lot from him.  (Jarret Johnson) is another vet who I can learn a lot from too.  He knows how to stay in this league.  They both have told me how important it is to get my body right.  Longevity is the name of the game, so whatever I can learn in that regard and others I’m going to listen.”

While Freeney and Johnson are veterans who have been in the league for over a decade, Attaochu emphasized he can also learn a lot from two guys who have been in the league for only a couple years – Melvin Ingram and Manti Te’o.

“I spoke to them a little bit about what it was like when they were rookies” he said.  “They told me a little bit about their experiences and how it is important not to be too hard on yourself because it is an adjustment.  They told me I need to take it one day at a time. It definitely helps having teammates at my position who have been in the same position.  A guy like Manti telling me how it’s going to go is very beneficial.”

While Attaochu is prudent in soaking up as much knowledge as possible from his teammates, he is also busy learning the ins and outs of the NFL and the San Diego Chargers from the coaching staff.

“Right now I’m learning from the coaches as far as what to do and the plays,” he explained.  “As we go further I’m sure I’m going to learn a lot more about everything from them too.  This whole week has been a whirlwind, but I’m excited to learn this system and start the process.”

Attaochu is not only grateful for his teammates and coaches but is also thankful for the way San Diego has responded to his selection.  He’s received a tremendous outpouring of support on twitter (@JAttaochu45) from fans excited to have the outside linebacker on board.   According to Attaochu, that only fuels his desire to prove the Bolts made the right move in trading up to land the player they coveted.

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