A Word With: DeAnte Weldon
George Marinos recently sat down with the dynamic Hanover Rhinos offensive weapon DeAnte Weldon to discuss everything from Ed Hochuli’s arms, to Weldon’s Madden rivalry with teammate Charles Smith.
GM: I’m here with DeAnte Weldon of the Hanover Rhinos. You’ve played for the Rhinos for a couple years now. How did you hear about the team, and what made you decide to try out?
DW: Charles Smith dragged me out to play. He knew I wanted to get back to playing ball, so, he just told me to come to a practice and see how I liked it.
GM: Why do you say that he dragged you?
DW: (Chuckles), Because I’m lazy, but once I get going, I go.
GM: What was that first year of tryouts like for you?
DW: I actually came mid-season. So it wasn’t really a tryout. They gave me a jersey, and saw I could make big plays. Not to mention, our current owner, Adam Bostian, was defensive captain.
GM: What was Adam like as a player and teammate?
DW: One way to describe Adam- he was a hitter. He would get me pumped up, and I was on offense (chuckles). He was a great teammate, too. He stopped me from suspension a few times.
GM: Would you say that you are a pretty intense player on the field?
GM: What would you say your favorite moment on a football field was?
DW: Wow, that’s a tough one. I would say playing Pop Warner. I played for Pikesville Wildcats. We got invited to play in the National Championship down in Daytona, Florida. I played corner, so my coach decided to give me a shot at wide receiver. I caught my first touchdown on offense down there. Ever since then, I’ve loved playing WR.
GM: You played at running back on offense all year this year for the Rhinos. Why the position change, and did you enjoy playing running back?
DW: We needed help at RB, so I’m big on teamwork, so where ever we need a body, I’ll fill in. It’s cool playing RB, but it’s nothing like embarrassing a corner that thinks he can cover you.
GM: Speaking of corner, you played that a little bit this year, and tied for the team lead in sacks. You had a pair of sacks against Carroll County. What’s that like coming off the edge and hitting the quarterback?
DW: It’s always fun being able to have a clear path to put a good hit on the QB.
GM: What’s the one thing you’ve never done on a football field that you want to do?
DW: Honestly I’ve done everything on the field, except referee, I would be a zebra.
GM: I’ve often said that being an official is a thankless job. People get on them when they miss a call, but don’t give them congratulations when they make the right call. What would be the toughest part of being a football official for you?
DW: Probably nothing. I would ignore coaches and ref my game, make calls when I see it.
GM: If you were an official, would you wear really short sleeves to showcase your guns, like Ed Hochuli?
DW: (Chuckles), Of course, let them know I’m not one to play with.
GM: Who has bigger guns, you or Ed Hochuli?
DW: I don’t know. I think Ed might be juicing (chuckles).
GM: If an NFL official has a good season and earns a trip to the Super Bowl, do you think his accomplishment would be tainted by a positive test for PEDs?
DW: Yeah, maybe.
GM: Tell us a little bit about what you do when you’re not playing football.
DW: I go play basketball. Most people don’t know, but at one point in my life, I was better at basketball then football. Other then that, I be chillin’.
GM: Are you from Hanover originally?
DW: Naw, I’m from Baltimore City. I just play ball up there.
GM: How often would you say you hang out in Hanover when it’s not game day?
DW: Every now and then, I’ll come up and chill with (Rhinos teammates) Lakeith (Parker) and Charles.
GM: A lot of people say that Hanover is a pretty simple place, and not much happens here. What do you think about Hanover?
DW: It’s quiet. A little too quiet. I’m a city boy, I’m not used to it.
GM: You are an Oakland Raiders fan. How did you become one living in Baltimore?
DW: My grandfather is an Oakland Raiders fan, and I’ve been watching football with him since I was a baby. My favorite player of all-time is Tim Brown, my favorite Raider, my favorite WR. He is a big inspiration- I wanted to be just like him, catching punt returns, kick returns, catching touchdown passes, even a few reverses. Jerry rice was a great, but in my eyes, Tim brown was the greatest.
GM: What memories do you have of Brown and Rice helping the Raiders to their most recent Super Bowl appearance in 2003? How old were you that season?
DW: Yea 2002-2003 we were 11-5. Uh, I don’t know, I was young. I remember having my created player on the Raiders on Madden 2003 (laughs).
GM: Did you make him 7-foot tall, and 99 ratings in everything?
DW: Naw, 6’3″, and 99 everything (chuckles).
GM: What position did your avatar play?
GM: Who did you bump out of a starting role? Jerry Rice or Tim Brown?
DW: Jerry of course.
GM: So, do you still play Madden, and if so, how would you rate your game?
DW: Yeah. I’ll give my game about 7 out of 10. Most times, if I lose it’s because I did something dumb (chuckles).
GM: What would qualify as doing something dumb on madden?
DW: Like, forgetting to call a timeout when I’m in field goal-range for the win.
GM: How do you forget to call a timeout? I don’t understand that.
DW: I don’t know, (chuckles), I’ll be talking so much (expletive), that I just forget about the clock. Charles beat me twice like that (shakes head).
GM: I bet he never lets you forget that, either?
DW: Yeah, that is true.
GM: What’s your record against Charles?
DW: I can’t even tell you. We battle, either we are tied, or he may hold it by a game.
GM: I have one final question for you. Donald Trump’s hair is ______ and reminds me of _______.
DW: Thin, a toupee.
GM: Thanks for your time, man.
DW: No problem.
Remember, you can catch a new Q&A session with a Hanover Rhinos player on Wordy Wednesdays, once a month during the offseason, exclusively on Rhino Charge, the official blog of the Hanover Rhinos