Draft close-up: G Brian Winters

Continuing our preview of this weekend's rookie minicamp ...

Player: Brian Winters, third round

School: Kent State

Position: Guard

Projected impact: He played left and right tackle in college, most recently the left side, but he projects as a guard. The Jets have three veterans at guard -- Willie Colon, Stephen Peterman and Vladimir Ducasse -- but Winters will be in the hunt for a starting job, assuming he can make the transition. Moving inside is easier than going outside, so he should be able to handle it. The guard position is in a state of transition. Winters is the future, and the future may start sooner rather than later.


On whether he feels like he has a chip on his shoulder coming from the MAC and being overlooked out of high school: "There were some other offers on the table in the situation. Obviously, coming from the school that I was coming from, I always had something to prove. In this situation, I’m always going to have that motto in my life, that I still have something to prove. Coming from where I’m from, we weren’t spoon fed. We fed ourselves. I guess I do have a chip on my shoulder."

On whether he sees himself as a guard or a tackle in the NFL: "I got thrown in [at guard] at the Senior Bowl, and I feel that was real comfortable for me as days went on. I feel like that’s where I can excel at the next level."

On Hudson, Ohio, his hometown: "It’s a small town. Obviously, we haven’t produced many players out of this town. We have Bill Nagy, who plays for the Lions. He’s also an offensive lineman. It’s a slow-run town, it’s a great town. [It’s] big on football. Not many players come out, but it’s awesome to have and I’m sure everyone there is really excited."

On his tattoos: "The way I look at it, I have one, maybe two -- actually, three tattoos. My one whole right arm, half of my left (arm) and my back."

On what it will be like to play for a head coach who has a tattoo: "It’s nice. It makes me feel at home, right? [Laughs]