Saturday afternoon, former Dartmouth High standout and University of Georgia tight end Arthur Lynch became the second player from Massachusetts to get selected in the NFL Draft year, going in the fifth round to the Miami Dolphins.
Lynch, a 2009 graduate of Dartmouth, was part of one of the most successful eras in the Indians' program history, leading them to two MIAA Division 1 playoff berths and an appearance in the 2007 Division 1 Eastern Mass. Super Bowl, losing to juggernaut Everett in overtime. Lynch shared the field with another NFL Draft pick, current Jacksonville Jaguars running back Jordan Todman, who went to the San Diego Chargers in the sixth round of the 2011 draft.
Here is the Dolphins transcript of Lynch's conference call with the media this afternoon:
On his thoughts at being drafted by the Miami Dolphins: “Thank you very much. I appreciate it. I’m excited at the opportunity. I’ve got my whole family here, so we’re just kind of excited, kind of running around, just kind of enjoying the moment.”
On what he feels he does the best on the football field: “I think I do a number of things fairly well. I think that’s one thing that a tight end is asked to do, is not just catch, not just block but really understand the game of football and be able to do things well all across the table. That was something that I had to do at Georgia and I think that I’ll be able to translate it to the next level.”
On what he feels he needs to improve on: “I think my technique. I think I’m still pretty raw. I started playing football in high school and I chose Georgia because of how they develop players and how they can put players into the NFL. For me, it’s really kind of mastering my technique – footwork, hand placement, little things in routes. You always just kind of want to perfect your craft no matter what you do, whether it’s your regular job in business or playing in the NFL. You want to perfect your craft and that’s kind of what I plan on doing for the next hopefully ten years.”
On whether he’s better at blocking or catching the ball: “I think blocking definitely came a little more natural from a physicality standpoint. As I’ve grown as a receiver I think I’ve been able to do a lot of things fairly well: Using my body to block out defenders, being able to snatch the ball in tight places. I think I’ve developed more as a receiver when my role at Georgia increased over the years.”
On if he ran at Pro Day: “I did not, I ran just at the Combine.”
On what his time was: “I think the hand time was a 4.68 and electronic time was 4.8. So whatever you want to take it. Those numbers, I think, are irrespective. It’s kind of what you want to make of it. At the end of the day it’s what you do with the pads on and I think I offer a lot as a football player.”
On when he heard he was going to be drafted and in what round he thought he would go in: “When [Jace] Amaro came off the board early, obviously your chances increase because that’s just kind of the nature of the game. You move up on boards when other tight ends go. I thought when the fifth guy went in the first pick of the third round that I might go towards the end of that or in the fourth, but really it’s not where you go, it’s what you do when you get there. Once again I’m excited to be a Miami Dolphin, I’m excited for the opportunity, and I just hope for the best for myself and the organization.”
On four out of the five players drafted so far by the Dolphins being team captains and what the leadership aspect means to him: “I think it means everything. The game of football, for me especially, has been monumental in my growth as a person and obviously my growth as a leader. To be a good football player, I think you have to attain and have many leadership qualities that you might not have or be able to acquire if you didn’t play the game of football. It teaches you a lot of things about life and because of that, I’ve been able to do some things well on and off the field. I think you need to be a good leader on the football field in order to have success. I think that’s why my teammates elected me captain at the University of Georgia and they did in high school as well. I think that I have those qualities and I’ll continue to display those qualities as a Miami Dolphin.”
On if he spoke to the Miami Dolphins through the draft process: “Yes. I spoke to them at the Senior Bowl and at the Combine. And I talked to area scouts and coaches through the phone, text, calls, whatever it may be, and obviously at Pro Day. But it’s so funny because you talk to all these teams and they say they like you and they very may well like you. It’s just a matter of matter of what their needs are and what they value you at, and thank God the Miami Dolphins valued me enough to pick me. I’m excited, again, for this opportunity because it’s a once in a lifetime chance. I hope to make the most of it.”
On if there are any NFL tight ends his game most resembles: “Zach Miller [Seattle Seahawks] and Heath Miller [Pittsburgh Steelers] are two guys that I’ve always looked up to and tried to model my game after. I think that that kind of complete tight end is not a dying breed but maybe undervalued considering what they used to be valued as. You see these guys that are out there flexed out as a receiver and catching all these balls, but those guys are the traditional tight ends and the guys who can do it both – really three facets: special teams, and blocking and catching. That’s kind of what I bring to the table and hopefully what I will be able to continue to do at Miami.”
On the change to his last name: “That was my father’s name. I live with just with my mom now, and lived with her for almost ten years and it’s just her. That’s her last name and that’s my grandfather’s last name and that’s kind of what I took prior to legally changing it. I went by Lynch-Fontaine.”