Analysis

Cooper Kupp: I'm 'docked' for being a small-school receiver

NFL Media's Oklahoma Drill series presents exclusive, quick-hitting one-on-one interviews with players and coaches from around the league. No nonsense -- just football experiences directly from the source.

Cooper Kupp

Wide receiver, Eastern Washington

Born: June 15, 1993

Experience: 2017 NFL Draft prospect

Interview by Brooke Cersosimo | March 15, 2017

It was an awesome opportunity to be [at the combine] and be around some really good football players. As much as you prepare yourself for what you're going to do, you can't prepare for it. But it's a lot of fun.

There's times when you're not enjoying it and waiting around for hours sitting in a hospital room. But the overall [combine] experience was a great opportunity.

While I didn't hit some of the marks I wanted and prepared to do, I feel like that doesn't define me as a player. I didn't walk out of there feeling like I'm a different football player. I know who I am and the kind of player I am.

I'm not trying to prove anything to anyone. I know who I am and I've been playing this game for a long time. I'm going to be the guy I've been and prepared myself to be over the last 15 or 16 years. I believe I can be a great player in this league and believe I can be one of the best.

If I had 48 cents in my pocket and six coins, what are the six coins? [That's the weirdest question I was asked at the combine.] It's not tough if you just think about it, but when you have a ton of people sitting there staring at you, it becomes a little more difficult. Any silence seems like it's taking forever.

I love [Eastern Washington's red field]. When it's yours, you have a different feel for it. I got so used to it that it was home. I loved it. But the more I've heard people talk about watching film or a game on it, I understand how difficult it is to watch. I'm going to miss it, though.

I think that if you're from a small school, you're immediately docked. It doesn't matter what you do or what they see on film. Even against [Football Bowl Subdivision] guys, it's, "Oh you're a small-school guy. This is your ceiling." I don't think that's right. Football is football, and there are some pretty good players that have come out of the FCS and did well against bigger competition. Every year, there are FCS schools that have beaten some good FBS schools.

[FCS players are] working hard and we believe that the ceiling isn't even close to being reached yet. ... I know I'm a very good player. I know I am and I'm excited to go out and show it. Wherever people think I'm going to get drafted, it doesn't matter to me. I know when I show up Day 1, I'm going to go play and think I'm going to be very productive.

They will get a guy who comes in Day 1 and knows the playbook. I'm going to be ready to go and play every position. I'm going to be versatile in that regard. I'm going to be reliable and know how to get open in multiple ways. I'm going to know how to run every route in the book that it won't matter what the coverage is. I'm going to know how to get open. I'm going to be a guy that when the quarterback wants me to be there, I'm going to be there.

As crazy as it might sound, [playing in the NFL] has always been a reality, even when I weighed in my freshman year. I was 5-foot-4, 119 pounds and had two-pound ankle weights on, and I knew exactly what I was going to be. In my mind, God made me to play football for a very long time.

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson [would play me in a movie]. I like his energy. I feel like he's got a little quirkiness to him and we're similar in size. I think we'd get along pretty well, too.

I grew up being a running back, so the guys I really liked to watch were running backs. I loved watching Reggie Bush at USC. It was unbelievable what he was able to do. Priest Holmes was another. As I transitioned to high school, I moved to quarterback and then receiver. From then on, I was watching Larry Fitzgerald, Antonio Brown and these great receivers.

I was a [Seahawks fan] at one point in my life. It would be very cool [to get drafted by Seattle] to be around family. I know they would love that.

My career goal is to be a Hall of Famer. That's what I strive to be. I want to be the very best to do it. To win Super Bowls is a part of that, but the end goal is to be a Hall of Famer.

Both are incredible. I don't want to take anything away from [Terrell Owens], but [if I have to pick between the two] I'm going to go with Randy Moss.

[The draft] is still a ways off, and there's a lot to be done before we get there. If we possibly get to go to Philly, we'd love to do that. If not, I just want to be around family.

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