Valley prep star ready for NFL playoff debut

slider nfl_playoffsAt this time a year ago, Prince Amukamara was preparing for the NFL draft.

This week he’s preparing for the playoffs.

It’s been quite a ride for the former Glendale Apollo star who was selected by the New York Giants with the 19th pick in the first round of last April’s draft. 

Amukamara, who was named the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year following his senior season at Nebraska, suffered a broken left foot just one day after signing his contract and missed the first nine games.

“It was a random accident,” Amukamara explained to Brad Cesmat on “Big Guy on Sports.” “It was the first broken bone I ever had in my body.”

After rehab and training, he made his debut November 20th against Philadelphia and recorded his first career interception when he stepped in front of a Vince Young pass just six minutes into the game.

As with most rookies, his first pro season has been filled with both ups and downs as Amukamara has struggled learning the Giants’ system, especially without the benefit of a training camp due to the lockout.

“I thought it was going to be a very smooth transition, but everything didn’t work out as I wanted to,” Amukamara told Cesmat.” “But now I’m playing so I’m happy about that.”

Amukamara has had to make some off-the-field transitions as well, going from the cornfields of the midwest to the bright lights of New York City.

“New York and Nebraska are completely night and day,” Amukamara said. “With the amount of people and type of people. I love new experiences and I love New York.”

On the field he knows the Giants back four will be tested against Matt Ryan, Roddy White, Julio Jones, and the rest of the Atlanta Falcons offense.

“They have an explosive offense with explosive wide receivers so our secondary is going to have our work cut out for us,” he said.

Kick-off from MetLife Stadium is 11:00 a.m. Arizona time on Sunday.