As he was first introduced to the media Friday afternoon Robert Nkemdiche made one thing quite clear.
His focus is on becoming a better football player.
Forget buying a panther or the mistake he made following his December marijuana possession arrest before the Sugar Bowl.
“I hate that that perception was ever created because that’s not who I am,” Nkemdiche said of his character misconceptions. “I made a mistake and I’m moving forward from it and looking forward to it. I can’t wait to get on the field and do successful things.”
The Cardinals are certain Nkemdiche’s head is in the right place after a productive, but at times critiqued, three-year career at Ole Miss. Well worth the “gamble” when the six-foot four, nearly 300-pounder fell all the way down to the third-to-last pick in the first round.
“Our staff had an opportunity to sit down and spend time to get to know Robert a little deeper,” general manager Steve Keim said moments before introducing his top pick Friday afternoon in Tempe. “We took him to dinner and at the end of the meeting, the message was the same. He told us, ‘I know I was meant to be a Cardinal.'”
— Darren Urban (@Cardschatter) April 29, 2016
“I’m going to be a great pro and handle my business,” the well-dressed Nkemdiche confidently expressed.
NFL life is certainly much more than just a game.