You came to the Steelers understanding your role could be a reserve one, which it was early on. But you are now starting due to injuries. Does that signify the importance of always being ready because you never know when your turn will come?Starting off as a reserve you are always taught that you are one play away so you have to prepare like you are a starter. Even if you are not getting all of the reps, you have to prepare that much harder so if you get your opportunity you are able to take advantage of it.
What's it like playing in a Dick LeBeau defense? Is it everything you imagined it would be and what are some of the biggest challenges of the defense?Definitely. Understanding his defense and the nuances of it, which I am still learning, just seeing how much freedom we have within it yet at the same time everybody has a chance to make a play in it. That's what makes it special.The adjustments are definitely the biggest challenge. We have new adjustments for the opponents and we are constantly trying to disguise things so we aren't being picked up by the offense. Your preparation from a mental standpoint definitely has to be sharp.**
Top photos of LB Arthur Moats.
How has your game improved in this defense?I feel like I am becoming a lot more comfortable with it. I feel like the way the scheme is set up there are favorable matchups and they are asking you to do things that work to your strengths.You just took part in a few Salute to Service games, and for the son of former Marine Arthur Moats II, what does it mean to you that the NFL and the Steelers have such a strong bond with those who serve our country?I love it. I love the fact that we are able to salute the people who have risked their lives for us, past tense and present tense. My personal connection with my father being a former Marine, my uncle and cousin being in the Air Force, on a professional level, at the highest level of this game being able to tell them we appreciate you a lot means so much.What lessons and values from the Marine Corps did your father instill in you?Definitely discipline. I would say that was the biggest thing. And just the mentality that no matter how good or bad the situation is, you are coming out positively.
*How has that transitioned and helped you in football?It helps out a lot, especially being in bad situations. Throughout your whole playing career you are going to be down in some situations, you are going to have some losses. But you always know you are going to bounce back, something positive is going to happen. It only takes one play to swing the momentum. *
What about your role as a father of two, have the lessons he taught you helped be the parent you are?Absolutely. I always tell to my daughters about discipline, especially the older one. I always talk to them about doing the same things but doing them the correct way, to the best of your ability and not taking your talents for granted. *Education appears to be something extremely important to you, as you are pursuing your master's online. Why is that so important?My dad is a high school math teacher now so that has always been in the back of my head. Growing up we talked about education first. When I went to college it was student first and then athlete second. I left a semester early so I went back and finished my undergrad. I am telling my daughters you have to always pursue your education, take it as far as it can go. I feel like I am being a little hypocritical pushing them to go as far as they can go and I am just sitting here with an undergrad and stopping. That is when I knew I had to do it. It's my second year in and I love it. I am half way done. It's all about time management. Some guys like to play video games in their free time or go out. Me, I like to spend time with my family and do my homework.Being new to Pittsburgh this year, what do you like about the city? *The culture here is great. You have the big time sports feel here with the Steelers, Pirates and Penguins. Everybody is so excited about the games here. You go into a store and people say to you big game this week, you have to get the win. The support everyone gives you here is a great feeling. **You managed to juggle five sports in high school (football, wrestling, track, soccer and basketball). What advice would you give kids today about playing sports and being well-rounded?I would encourage them to try something out and see if you like it. Being active and understanding what you like and don't like at an early age is definitely going to help you. I know for me my whole purpose of playing five sports was geared towards helping me in football. People would see me playing five sports and think I really loved playing sports. There was a method to my madness. Wrestling was all about footwork and leverage. Basketball was about footwork and conditioning. Soccer was about footwork. Track was speed. Everything was geared towards football.