Tight End Darren Waller
Q: Did it surprise or take you back a little bit that you're going to be a captain right away?
A: It means a lot. It something you don't take for granted. I don't come in to try to earn a 'C' on my jersey. I just come in to try to impact guys in a positive way because I know I'm somebody that's been in the league longer than a lot of guys in the locker room have, so they may look at me to see, 'How's he been able to sustain through good times and through bad?' I try to set an example like that, and it manifested into being a captain and I'm going to continue to try to do the same things that I've been doing as far as uplifting guys and just being a positive example.
Q: Have you been a team captain before?
A: Yeah, I was a captain in '21 with the Raiders.
Q: When you'd been there for a while…
A: That was my third year.
Q: What do you take from that experience, being a captain with the Raiders and bringing it here? How does that impact how you go about things?
A: Something I learned being captain for the first time was you don't have to be anybody other than yourself. It's about finding your own leadership style. I feel like it's still unfolding for me. Even back then it was still a feeling-out process. Like, do I say a lot more, or do I do different things? Now, for me it's I feel more comfortable and how I lead is saying things (inaudible) sometimes, saying things that need to be said, but more so leading by example, encouraging guys when they may be in a rut or things may not be clicking, just being there for them when some people may turn their back on them and be like, 'What's going on with him,' but just try to be there for people. That's kind of more my leadership style.
Q: Did it take you a while to find that here, or did it happen almost right away with guys?
A: I feel like it started right away because I got here and I've never really been one of the oldest guys before and here, I am. I'll be 31 in a couple of weeks. I know guys look to that no matter what you've done in your career. It's like, 'Okay, this guy's been here for a long time; how has he been able to stay here?' So, I take that into account with the decisions that I make, the routine that I have, because you never know who may be watching. I try to carry that into every aspect of the day.