The 2019 NFL draft is loaded with blue-chip defensive line prospects, many of whom will come off the board in the first round. But the depth of this year’s class should give all 32 teams some talented options on Day 2 and beyond, and Temple’s Michael Dogbe could be among this year’s best values.
A physical, disruptive defender, Dogbe recently spoke exclusively with MCM about what it means to be Temple Tuff, why his Pro Day was such a success and why he’d love to sack Tom Brady.
JM: I thought you had a big Pro Day, but how do you feel it went?
MD: It was a successful day I think. Honestly, I wanted to do a lot better. They had me at a 1.68 in my 10-yard split. I wanted to make sure that I did that in under 1.70 so I’m definitely happy with that time. I wanted to show that I have a pretty good get off and I think I accomplished that. I was able to show my strength in the bench press with 34 reps. My explosiveness shined through my broad result as well. Some teams clocked me at a 4.9 in the 40 yard dash. It was great to be under five seconds flat there. I think I displayed my ability throughout my position drills as well. I’m pretty happy with how the day went overall, but there’s always room for improvement.
JM: I think that’s the right attitude to have. Did you chat with any teams afterwards?
MD: Teams were coming up to me and complimenting me. They talked about how much they enjoyed watching my performance. I received a lot of compliments. Teams promised to keep in touch with me. Things like that. They were commending the type of day I had.
JM: Have you had any private visits or workouts?
MD: I just wrapped up a private visit with the Atlanta Falcons. I went out to lunch with a scout for the Titans. We had a great conversation. I have three local days coming up. I’m eligible to participate in the local days with the Jets, Giants and Eagles.
JM: That’s awesome. What’s your favorite part about playing DT?
MD: I love the physicality of it. I love playing inside and being able to get after the quarterback. Sacking the quarterback is a great feeling. I can’t even describe it. The ability to dominate and use your will power to control and get past another man is a great feeling.
JM: I love that answer. What does it mean to be Temple Tuff?
MD: Temple Tuff is about doing things the right way both physically and mentally. It’s about putting in hard work. Temple is gonna put you through a lot physically. You’re either gonna quit or you’re gonna continue to push through to the end. They’re gonna challenge you mentally. You’re gonna be tested throughout every aspect. You have to practice like you play. You can’t take any days off. If you can endure all of that, that’s what defines you as Temple Tuff. If you can handle everything the program throws your way and execute at a high level, you’re Temple Tuff. You have to be a leader. You have to be able to lead and stand up through adversity. You have to be a voice for the young guys who are still finding their way.
JM: That’s so great. It’s truly a special place. Playing at Temple allowed you the opportunity to play against some great competition. Who are some of the greatest offensive linemen you ever faced?
MD: I’ve played against just about everybody throughout my years both in and out of conference. I’d have to highlight Chris Lindstrom from Boston College. I played against him this past season and thought he was very good. He’s a guy I was excited to go up against. We definitely had a good battle all game. He’s a gifted player. I played against Notre Dame my junior year. That entire offensive line was very talented. That was in 2017. I respected that offensive line because they were all so good.
JM: They had a great offensive line. Is there a quarterback that you’d love to sack at the next level?
MD: Tom Brady. He’s the greatest to ever do it. He’s been playing the game at a high level for such a long time and he’s won so many championships. It’d be an honor to be on the same playing field as him. I love to compete against great talents. He’s the ultimate competitor. To get a sack on him would be a great feeling.
JM: In closing, why should a team use one of their draft picks on Michael Dogbe?
MD: A team should invest one of their draft picks in me because I’m gonna come in and make the team better. I’m a guy that loves to compete and work hard. I’m gonna challenge my teammates to get better. Let’s make one another better. I’m gonna be very studious. I can’t wait to get my playbook and bury my head in it. I’m always gonna find ways to better myself and those around me. My goal is to come in and contribute as a rookie. I’m chasing championships.