QB talked to Fisher about more than football
In his third draft diary for ESPN.com, Matt Leinart talks about his first-ever trips to Atlanta and Tennessee.
Editor's note: Former USC QB Matt Leinart will offer ESPN.com an exclusive look into his life in the days and weeks leading up to the NFL draft (April 29-30).
I haven't been sleeping much with all of the travel this week.
Monday, I was in Atlanta appearing for a network. Eli Manning, Matt Hasselbeck and I were appearing there and signing autographs. We went out to dinner afterwards. Eli wasn't at dinner because he had to leave town, but we hung out a lot that day. It was my first time in Atlanta. I enjoyed it. My flight from L.A. to Atlanta left at 6 a.m. on Monday morning.
Tuesday morning I had an 8 a.m. flight from Atlanta to Tennessee. It was an important day for me with the Titans in Nashville. It was my first time in Tennessee.
I got off the plane and drove straight to the hotel and then to the Titans' facilities. I was pretty much there all day.
|Q&A with Leinart|
Q. St Cloud? (no name) -- Do you think the transition to the NFL will be harder than the transition to college?
A It's going to be different. It will be harder, but in different ways. From high school to college is a completely new game. From college to the pros is a completely new game. However, having played at USC, the transition will be easier on me than on some people that went to other schools. There are good players at some positions in college, but not everyone is a good player. It will be more challenging because it's the best of the best.
Q. Aaron, Chicago -- Looking back at what you've accomplished at USC, what's your greatest moment?
Q. Terry, Atascadero, Calif. -- How frustrating is it to be the epitome of a winning quarterback in college and then for all these questions to be raised the past couple months?
It was the first NFL practice I've gone to since attending a Chargers practice as part of a quarterback camp when I was in coming out of high school. It was interesting and kind of weird seeing that I'm going to be up at that level soon. I think I could fit in right away with the game and the transitioning -- whether it's Tennessee or another place.
It was fun to see the speed of the game. Everyone is like, "Oh, yeah, it's so much different everyone is huge and fast." It gets in rookies' minds. When you're out there, it is definitely different. The speed is definitely faster. Everyone is the best of the best at their position. The windows are a lot smaller and they stay open a lot less time. There are some major differences, but overall it's still football. The plays are still pretty much the same. The defenses are run the same except for more disguising. When it's all said and done, it's still X's and O's. It's just about throwing the ball to the wide open guy. That's something you have to think about.
Coach [Jeff] Fisher and I had an awesome conversation just talking about everything while I was there. When the Titans came to L.A., I talked to Coach Fisher a little bit, but not near as much as we did on Tuesday. I had a chance to sit in his office, talk with him, and just shoot the breeze for awhile. We were both really comfortable around each other. We talked about everything from how it is in L.A., to how it is in Nashville, from football to relationships, and even hunting. I've heard so many great things about Coach Fisher from everybody. It was nice to be able to get a first-hand look at how great a guy and coach he is.
I went out to dinner with some of the coaches and then we took a tour of the town on Tuesday night. It's so different than California because of the land space. In California, you have backyards the size of bedrooms whereas in Tennessee they are acres. The land and space are pretty cool. Downtown is a lot like L.A.'s, but the vibe was different. Everyone was really genuine and super nice. It was a nice city.
I returned to L.A. on Wednesday afternoon. I'm still sick and going back and forth between the East and West Coast with the time change is killing me. I'm looking forward to relaxing now that I'm back in California.
Yet, even though I want to relax, I plan on getting some hard workouts in the rest of the week. I worked out on Saturday and Sunday. I had to take Monday and Tuesday off because I didn't have time. I'm in OK shape, but I just need to continue preparing for that workout with the Jets.
My focus is 100 percent on my visit with the Jets early next week. Reporters have been asking a lot of questions about my agent situation. It is a subject that I would prefer to discuss next week.
You come to a point where you're just ready to go. I'm ready to get to the draft and see what happens.
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