Washington Redskins DB, Jordan Pugh, had a love for baseball as a child but had a change of heart after one blistering Texas day. “I remember burning up while sitting in center field thinking this is not fun. No one is hitting me the ball and I am burning up for no reason, so why should I continue to play this sport,” recalled Pugh. That day he went to his father and told him he wanted to play football.
Since then football has been his everything. Pugh played football at Plano West High School and later proceeded to play football at Texas A&M University. There Pugh’s football skills and knowledge enhanced, permitting him to become a prospect for the 2010 NFL draft. Pugh was drafted in the 6th round by the Carolina Panthers. After being with the Panthers for two seasons, he was released by their organization. However, Pugh wasn’t a free agent for very long. He was signed by the Washington Redskins before the 2012 season. As a Redskin, Pugh received his first career sack on Joe Flacco in week 14 against the Baltimore Ravens, along with his first playoff run. I was able to catch-up with Mr. Pugh during this off season to see how life has been both on and off the field.
Vesti: Looking back at the 2010 NFL Draft, how did it feel to know all your hard work had finally paid off when you were selected by the Carolina Panthers?
Pugh: It’s a feeling you can’t describe. It’s something you’ve always prayed for when you first start playing the sport. You want to reach the highest level possible and when I received that call from the Panthers organization, I was beyond happy. Although, getting that call was joyful, it also added pressure because now your mindset is to prove to them that they didn’t make the wrong decision by selecting you.
Vesti: When you arrived at North Carolina, would you say A&M prepared you enough for the league?
Pugh: Yes, physically and mentally they did prepare me. The hardest part was adjusting to the demands of the league and the business side as well.
Vesti: You have always intrigued me when it came to your religious beliefs. Can you inform everyone on what your beliefs are and how you feel He challenged you while you were playing for the Carolina Panthers?
Pugh: I’m a big faith guy and I believe in God. The biggest things you face in this league are pride, money, and women. It can get hard trying to do the right thing when you consistently see these things daily. When you remember your purpose and why God put you here it gets easier to handle.
Vesti: What transpired with the Panthers that caused the move to the Redskins?
Pugh: Honestly, I have no idea. That’s the thing being in this league, it’s a business. You never get the real reason why things happen the way they do. I wish I did know what transpired but I don’t.
Vesti: How was it going from Cam Newton to RGIII? Who would you say is the biggest Diva?
Pugh: Lmao on the Diva question and no comment. When it comes to going from Cam to RGIII, they are honestly one in the same. I’m a fan of both and yeah they have different things to offer but all in all they are both winners. It comes down to who you prefer. I was honored to be on the same team with Cam and I am now honored to be playing on the same team with RGIII.
Vesti: Since the move to the Redskins, how has your on field play improved?
Pugh: Just playing football overtime has helped improve my skills. Physically, you improve through different coaches. While I’ve been with the Redskins, I’ve improved with breaking down the film and moving it over to on field play.
Vesti: I’ve always called you Plano since the day we met because that’s the part of Dallas you are from. Your high school, Plano West, has recently retired your football jersey. Is it safe to say that you are Mr. Plano now?
Pugh: Lol, no I wouldn’t say I’m Mr. Plano but I am definitely honored that they choose to retire my jersey. It goes to show my hard work didn’t go unnoticed.
Vesti: Since the season is over, what are some of the things you’ve been doing in the community?
Pugh: The past two years, I’ve started my own foundation called Pushing
Upward Going Higher; PUGH. I have collaborated with my high school, PlanoWest, to reach students who have academic passion along with their athletic ability to show them that they have not been overlooked. When playing a team sport, not everyone gets noticed for all their hard work that they have contributed to the team. I take the time to mentor these kids and let them know that they are not being forgotten. I award one student every year that distributes hard work in their academics as well as their on field play.
Jordan Pugh is not only a professional football player, he is also a business man and a public speaker. Check him out at http://www.jordanpugh29.com. Thank you, Mr. Pugh for a wonderful interview. To football fans all over I say: continue to watch and follow Pugh on his journey with the Washington Redskins as they battle to reach the SuperBowl this coming 2013 season.
“The two biggest things that I am about are being a business man and a mentor. I love getting to know people, talking to people, and helping people. Since God has blessed me, I try to lend out a helping hand as much as I can.” – Jordan Pugh