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Chat Reel: Patrick Kerney

Falcons in the playoffs? 'Absolutely'

Posted: Saturday April 15, 2000 06:39 PM

  Patrick Kerney Defensive end Patrick Kerney was the 30th pick in the first round of the 1999 NFL Draft. Scott Halleran/Allsport

CNNSI Host: Welcome to today's chat with Atlanta Falcon Patrick Kerney. Hello, Patrick.
Patrick Kerney: Hello, thanks for having me on.

From Guest: Patrick do you think that the Falcons get their season turned around with a healthy Jamal Anderson? Do you also think the organization can get some help on defense in the upcoming draft?
Patrick Kerney: Absolutely we'll be able to turn it around. With the salary cap, just staying healthy in general is going to be the biggest thing for any team. In the draft, we can definitely get some help on defense even though we don't have a first round pick, there have been numerous late-round picks that have gone on to Pro Bowl careers.

From Jose Vasquez: What has been the biggest improvement in your game after a year in the NFL?
Patrick Kerney: Probably my hands in the pass rush. The NFL level is a lot more of a hand-fighting battle in the pass rush than it was in college. I've been spending extra time prior to practice with my coaches to get the guy's hands out of the way.

From Bruce: Can you comment on John Engelberger? What type of player do you think he will turn out to be?
Patrick Kerney: He has a lot of potential because he is a physically fast and strong guy. We used to have to watch some of their film in college when we were playing the same teams and he's a guy who definitely plays very hard and runs to the ball fast, which is very important in this league.

Greg Basham: Is Draft Day behind the scenes really like the movie "Jerry Maguire"?
Patrick Kerney: *Laughs* The only thing they had in Jerry Maguire is some of his workouts, but it's like that, a big circus.

Reg Dunlop: I was just wondering who you thought was going to win the Stanley Cup. I am a Flyers fan and think they are going to win. Do you share my optimism?
Patrick Kerney: I absolutely do. The Flyers will take the Cup this year.

From Michael Johnson: I really enjoy watching Falcons football down here in Texas. I know that losing in the Super Bowl was tough on all the Falcons and their fans. This year you all will have several key players coming back and getting several good quality players out of the draft. Do you feel that the Falcons will have a better, more hungry team like the one that played in the Super Bowl or will it be a re-building year? Also will Jamal bring back
Patrick Kerney: Definitely, I think guys may have gotten comfortable being NFC Champions. After you go through a 5-11 season you have an awful feeling for the entire off season. Guys are working right so they won't have that same feeling next season. Coach Reeves has been working on some new moves of his own that he's trying to help Jamal with, but I imagine that he'll stick to the Dirty Bird.

From Drew Melchionni: I saw in an interview somewhere that you visited New York City recently. How did you spend your time there? Is this a city you would want to play for?
Patrick Kerney: I spent my time catching up with friends from high school and college, so I spent a lot of time catching up with them. As far as playing there, come free agency, this is a business... I'm happy where I am, but if someone took me away from Atlanta, it's a place I'd be happy to play for.

From Guest: I am in 9th grade and will play varsity football next year. I am a center on offense and linebacker on defense. What can I do to make myself better?
Patrick Kerney: Well, when you're that young, you don't want to get started in heavy lifting, first of all. You should focus on being very mobile, running a lot... and just work on the fundamentals of football.

From Patrick Butler: What do you think are the top three keys in order for the Falcons to return to the playoffs?
Patrick Kerney: No. 1, stay healthy. Absolutely. No. 2, the defense needs to get back to the way it was two years ago. And No. 3, Jamal having a full recovery.

From Adam Wallace: What type of approach do you think the Falcon's management will take in this upcoming draft? ( ex: Players, positions to be filled, etc...)
Patrick Kerney: I have heard from some coaches that we'll be trying to get some quality offensive linemen, probably in the second round with our first pick. After that, you really have to look at going with the best athletes available.

CNNSI Host: That's all the time we have to chat with Patrick. Thank you for joining us.
Patrick Kerney: Thanks. Take care!

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