Nebraska safety Daimion Stafford had to wait for 247 other players to get a call over the weekend saying they were being selected before he heard his name, but it was well worth the wait when the Tennessee Titans took him in the 7th round.
“Real long day, woke early, and you know, basically waiting,” said Stafford in a conference call with Titans reporters on Saturday night. “I am not disappointed. I mean it happens the way it happens for a reason. I’m just excited to get out there and compete, play football.”
Stafford, a junior college transfer to Nebraska, was rated as the No. 18 safety in the draft by FOX Sports NEXT.
During his two-years with Nebraska, Stafford collected 176 tackles, registering four interceptions. In 2012, he was named first-team All-Big Ten by the conference's media.
Stafford was asked by reporters to describe his game overall and what he was looking to work on most when he hit the practice field.
“I am a pretty good all-around player. I do bring wood and that’s probably one of the best things I like to do is punish somebody with the ball,” said Stafford. “I always hustle to the ball, you know what I mean, good things happen. I always keep that in my mind when I am out there.
“Actually I want to improve on everything. But, of course, that is something (pass defense) I actually work on as well as other aspects of the game.”
If Stafford can impress in Rookie OTAs and stick with the Titans during training camp, he will get an opportunity to learn from former Big Ten alum Bernard Pollard, who's expected to start for Tennessee after signing a one-year deal in the offseason. Pollard last season played with the Super Bowl winning Baltimore Ravens, registering 98 tackles and one interception in 13 games. The eight year veteran is known to be a bone crushing tackler – a similar role Stafford was known for during his two years with Nebraska.
“I have been watching him for quite some time,” said Stafford. “Of course, I am going to try and get under his wing and see if he can show me the ropes about the next level and go from there.”