- The Washington Times - Sunday, November 22, 2015

ASHBURN — Will Compton is at his best when he’s at the heart of a defense and communicating calls to his teammates.

The Washington Redskins’ third-year inside linebacker has always been praised for his high football IQ, dating back to his days at Nebraska when he played for coach Bo Pelini.

It’s a product of his extensive preparation, which starts with detailed note-taking and film breakdowns and ends with Compton watching as many as four full games on the upcoming opponent.

That helped him emerge as a starter in the Redskins’ defense last week against the New Orleans Saints and he’s expected to do so again on Sunday against Carolina.

When he’s not busy studying, though, the Bonne Terre, Mo. native just likes to kick back, watch Netflix or read a book. The 230-pound linebacker loves to eat, too. A lot.

In this week’s Sunday chat, Compton talked about what he’d be doing if he wasn’t playing football, what it was like moving from the Midwest to the East Coast and most importantly, what he likes to eat.

Did I mention he likes to eat?

Q: What would you be doing if you weren’t playing football?
“I’d probably be getting into coaching. If I didn’t make it to the NFL, I would’ve gotten into the coaching world. It was something I always wanted to do anyways. When I came out of high school, I’d ask what I should major in because I ultimately wanted to coach and they’d all just say business or what not, but I always wanted to coach because I love the game. Throughout college, Bo was always telling me whenever football ended for me, I’d always have a place with him.

Q: What do you like to do when you leave Redskins Park?
A: Right now I’ve been watching the Walking Dead, watching TV shows on Netflix. I don’t like shows that have one season out, I like to have shows that have several seasons out. I like to binge-watch. I can’t do the week-to-week wait. Last time I did that was Sons of Anarchy. I love that show, that’s probably my favorite. I like video games, I like to read — do different things. Eat food.

Q: Since you love to eat, what’s your favorite cheat meal?
A: I’m on a huge Thai food kick. I crush Thai food, bro. One time me and Murph [linebacker Trent Murphy] went, we ordered like four entrees. We ate at Thai Pan in Leesburg. It’s a little hole in the wall connected to a gas station, but I highly recommend it. It’s out of this world. I love it so much. I like the cashew nut chicken, crispy basil duck. But Thai Pan doesn’t have the best crispy basil duck dish. I like drunken noodles. The red curry duck, that’s awesome too. If I can have a cheap meal that’s not at a restaurant, I’d be at my family’s house, barbequing chicken, pork steaks, hash brown casserole. Ribs. Wrap em in bacon, smoke em. If I go out to eat, it’s Thai food.

Q: What was it like moving east?
A: It’s cool because there’s so much more to do out here than back where I’m from, but I’m more of a homebody. On weekends, I’d just get together with our friends, play video games. Out here, I love all the different varieties of food. Bro, I love eating, man. I love going to different spots.

Q: What position would you play if you weren’t playing linebacker?
A: Quarterback. If I had the measurements, I’d play quarterback. Growing up, I was a running back and receiver. I was never a quarterback, never thought about playing quarterback. My first offers were for receiver and H-back at Wake Forest. Arkansas offered me the H-back, whatever Peyton Hillis played. Notre Dame offered me as a fullback/athlete, wanted me to try offense first and then linebacker. Everywhere else was linebacker. I knew I wasn’t going to be an offensive player and that if I wanted to make it, it’d be as a linebacker. But I was a little baller. I was All-state.

Q: How do you prepare before a game?
A: When I’m feeling good, I’ve got to really study, make sure I’m on top of my notes. I don’t like to eat too much. I don’t have a whole lot of superstition, it’s more just being prepared. If I don’t feel like I didn’t do the extra preparations, I’ll feel out of whack. I don’t cram. It will be more so on Saturdays. I’ll just remind myself, ‘You know it all, go out there and just play physical.’ I’ll watch a full game. During the week, it’s all cut-ups, situational, run-game, pass-game. On Saturday, I download the games and just watch games. This week, it’ll probably be around four different games.

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