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Get to know a rookie: Kenny Hilliard

The Houston Texans have developed an affinity for running backs out of LSU, the latest being Kenny Hilliard, who they took in the seventh round of this year's draft.

"I think the history of success of running backs from LSU is something that’s good," Texans coach Bill O'Brien said. "I believe that he’s a guy that, as most LSU backs, they rotate when they’re there because they all come in as high school All-Americans, so they have to learn how to share the load. He’s willing to do that, so I think he can come in here and help us as a first- and second-down back."

Hilliard has an NFL pedigree. He shared some of that and more about his family in today's get to know a rookie installment.

Who was your biggest childhood influence?

KH: My mother was my biggest childhood influence because she steered me the right way. When my dad deceased in 2006, she was a mother and a father to me. so that was my big influence in my life.

How did your dad pass away?

KH: Diabetes. It runs in the family. That’s why I’ve got to keep myself healthy and gotta watch what I eat.

Who was your biggest football influence?

KH: I have several guys. My uncle, Dalton Hilliard from the New Orleans Saints. My cousin, Ike Hilliard, a receivers coach at Washington. Those guys were also an influence in my life, too. Growing up, I wanted to be like them making it to the NFL. So my dream came true with that. They were another influence in my life.

What did they tell you about being an NFL player?

KH: Just coming in, learning the system. Being a great team player. Whatever the coaches ask me to do, just make sure I do it to the best of my ability.

What’s your favorite food?

KH: Red beans and rice, fried chicken (laughs).

Who makes that for you?

KH: My mom.

Who was your favorite athlete growing up?

KH: Growing up, I’d say LeBron James.

Who was the best athlete you faced in college?

KH: As a team or like, I had a battle? I never had a battle with anyone.

As a team, then.

KH: I could say the SEC conference, if you want to put it like that.

What’s your most prized possession?

KH: My phone, I guess.

What’s your biggest fear?

KH: I don’t really have a fear.

Do you have to do that to play this game?

KH: I mean you can’t be scared to play this game. If you’re scared to play this game then you’re playing the wrong game, I guess.

If you could own any animal, which would it be?

KH: Tiger, I guess. Just because I went to LSU, we need to have a tiger. A baby tiger.

Which emoji best describes you?

KH: The one with the glasses, cause I’m cool.