Najeh Davenport, Steelers Running Back, 2006-2008
First, can you let readers know about what you’ve been doing with yourself since football?
Well, I’m currently in my last semester at Nova South Eastern University obtaining my Master in Business Administration with a concentration in management.
I filmed and directed a documentary “A tale of 5 the documentary “. I’m currently in the process of starting a football camp where we bring football to student athletes year round. “Swagger camp” powered by 360Football Academy.com.
How did you get involved in this line of work?
I got involved with the sports camps and documentary because of my hobbies. I love movies and business development and this gave me an opportunity to bring all of my hobbies into one concept.
You came to the Steelers in 2006 as a free agent. What made you decide to play for the Steelers and how did they “recruit” you?
Unfortunately, the Packers cut me, and I thought my pro career was done. I remember trying to update my resume the next day.
That night my agent called and told me the Steelers were interested in bring me out. When I arrived in Pittsburgh I had a 20-minute meeting with BC (Bill Cower) and he shook my hand and told me welcome to the Steelers.
In what ways did the Steelers practices and locker room differ from that of Green Bay’s – how difficult was the adjustment?
The difference between the Steelers and the Packers were night and day relating to the locker-room atmosphere. Pittsburgh was more laid back and family-oriented. The Packers, you were more of an employee and that was about it
You were a versatile player – a good running back, receiver and returner. Do you think that versatility actually made it harder to secure a starting spot for the Steelers and Packers?
A very old saying my coach told me in high school – “A jack of all trades and a master of none.”
I believe the coaches thought I was more value being able to play multiple position so I did what I was ask and when I got a chance to started I produced.
You had a number of injuries in the NFL – including a broken eye socket and broken ankle. How is your health these days – and do you attribute those injuries to your running style?
I only fractured my orbital socket and broke my ankle. I atrribute my injuries to my size and speed I was a big and fast back. Most defenders try to tackle me low and that’s where I believe my injuries came from.
Who were the guys on those Steelers teams that kept the team loose, and how did they do so? Any funny stories?
Definitely Hines and Troy – one joke after another. But what happens in the locker-room stays in the locker –room lol
How was Coach Cowher to play for – what was his involvement in the development of the weekly strategy?
He was a player’s coach, and a great guy.
What were some of your most memorable moments in Pittsburgh?
My most memorable moment was I believe my first home game at Pittsburgh against Kansas City. My first carry I broke it and stiff armed the safety and got run down by a steroid taking defensive end. Classic!