Earlier this week, I had the great privilege to interview former Ravens great WR Qadry Ismail. Thanks to Qadry for taking the time!
I hope you enjoy this interview:
Joe Wedra: Who was your inspiration as a young player?
Qadry Ismail: I really looked up to a few guys in my youth… Here’s two that stood out… I loved the play of Earl Campbell from the Houston Oilers. I thought I was going to be like him when I grew up; also, Michael Jordan and his competitive will really inspired me to work hard and believe in myself.
JW: What was your biggest challenge getting to the NFL?
Q: Biggest challenge… How to practice like I play in a game- Full speed and intense focus.
JW: How do you balance being friends with a team-mate, and also competing against him for a spot on the team?
Q: I felt like if I focused in and did my job and took care of what I needed to do- then let the chips fall where they fall… Control what I could control… and be a teammate that builds up a fellow player and not tear him down.
JW: What was your reaction when you found out you got drafted?
Q: Dream come true! Wow, I’m going to play in the NFL!!!!! Um, where is Minnesota on the map? Ha ha ha.
JW: How could you compare the Baltimore Ravens organization with others that you were a part of?
Q: They simply do things the right way. They are not perfect but they have a goal, and that’s to WIN and put good players in position to do so. Other organizations that I was a part of didn’t really get that "Win" statement… It starts with good ownership and the Ravens have a first class person in Steve Bisciotti.
JW: How much sleep did you get the night before Super Bowl XXXV?
Q: Slept like a baby! All my life I waited for it to happen and sure enough… I was ready!
JW: How much sleep did you get the night AFTER Super Bowl XXXV?
Q: NONE! I was exhausted…
JW: Besides the Super Bowl, what was your most memorable moment playing with the Ravens?
Q: Beating the Steelers in Three Rivers Stadium and my stats were 6 catches 258 yards, 3 TD’s – all over 50 yards.
JW: What advice would you give to young players striving to make the NFL?
Q: Have a backup plan in case you don’t make it!
JW: Again, thanks to Qadry for taking the time to answer my questions.