March 30, 2006
It’s been a whirlwind twelve months for former Florida State cornerback Bryant McFadden. At this time last year he was preparing for Florida State’s annual Pro Day, looking to impress a crowd of more than 100 NFL scouts and coaches on hand in Tallahassee. And impress he did, showing personnel types the skills that made him an All-ACC selection following his senior season in 2004. One person on hand was longtime Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Bill Cowher, who thought enough of the Hollywood, Fla. native to take him in the second round of the 2005 Draft.
A year later, McFadden has now come full circle, returning to FSU after his first season in the NFL. A season that saw him take the field in the Super Bowl, an opportunity not afforded to too many rookies. When the dust had settled on his inaugural campaign, he’d recorded 17 tackles and an interception for the Super Bowl champion Steelers. McFadden visited FSU’s spring practices last week and caught up with seminoles.com to discuss everything from the Super Bowl to his days in the Garnet and Gold.
What’s it like coming back here to Florida State and seeing this now that you’ve graduated and moved on to the next level?
BM: It’s a great feeling, especially when I get a chance to see some of the other guys that played here with me. We just come back and hang out together and help out the guys that are still here.
Less than a year after getting drafted you found yourself on the biggest stage, playing in the Super Bowl. What was that like?
BM: It was a blessing and a dream come true. After watching the Super Bowl for the majority of my life and then having the opportunity to play in it, I really can’t describe that in words-it’s just a great feeling.
You hear veterans always telling younger players to enjoy the Super Bowl because you never know when you’re going to be back. Were you able to really enjoy it?
BM: That’s what they were telling us the whole time, just be appreciative of the moment and take advantage of it. I’m just really glad that we were able to take care of business and come away with a victory, because you never know if you’re going to get the chance to be back again.
How did playing against the best competition and on the biggest stage here at Florida State help prepare you for the NFL?
BM: It helped a lot, being out here and having to compete everyday in practice to maintain my position and improve on my ability to be able to play on Saturdays. When I got to the next level, I had to do the same thing and I was already accustomed to doing that. I was comfortable and felt ok with having to prove myself everyday in practice.
What advice do you give to the guys that will be working out at Pro Day and in private workouts for teams leading up to the draft?
BM: Most importantly, have fun, because it’s all football and it’s nothing but a challenge. If you’re a competitive person, you’ll love to have to chance to compete and show yourself to all of the NFL teams. The most important thing is just to have fun and welcome the challenge.