Choppin It Up With Arthur Moats of the Buffalo Bills

Arthur MoatsIn the first “Choppin it Up” article for Optimum Scouting, I got a chance to talk with Arthur “DaBody” Moats. To those of you who don’t know who Arthur Moats is, he is a past Buck Buchanan Award winner who was able to pave his way to the draft coming out of James Madison University.

Coming out of James Madison University, Moats had 29 career sacks, and was a monster off the edge, the biggest knock on him was his size. The Buffalo Bills didn’t believe that was a problem and drafted him with the 178 pick in the sixth round. Scouts said if he was bigger or stronger he could be a stud, but he proved to everyone that you don’t need size or weight to get to the quarterback (Just Ask Brett Favre).

“Don’t Cross the Moats” was the nickname he was given to him by fans after putting an end to Brett Favre’s consecutive games starting record. I got a chance to talk with Arthur and breakdown his experience as a Buck Buchanan award winner and what it takes to go from “Diamond in the Rough” to a NFL contributor.

As a Buchanan Award winner do you get to vote on the next winner, such as the Heisman?
No, I didn’t, I believe that the media outlets and coaches get the say in that, I wish they let the past players have a say.

What do you win for the Buck Buchanan Award?
You receive a self portrait of yourself, and also your name is engraved on the award, that stays with the Sports Network. They send a painted action picture of yourself to both you and your school. It is a great award to have, and I am honored to have it.

Who do you think should win the Buck Buchanan Award this year, Have you been watching?
I haven’t been watching as much as I should be, but hopefully it is an East Coast guy.

Did you have any big schools coming after you, coming out of high school?
Yeah, I had 13 full scholarships from teams, they were from teams in the Atlantic 10 and Mac, Kent State and Akron, Partials from Tech and Penn State.

What is your biggest accomplishment, so far in your career?
Making my first NFL tackle, I remember making that tackle against the Packers, playing special teams, that was one of my best NFL moments.

How many twitter followers did you gain after knocking out the legend Brett Favre?
Wow, Man I probably jumped up like 700 or 800 twitter followers, it was a huge jump, and I thank them for that.

I see that you play an instrument, is that correct? What type of music do you like?
Yeah, I play the keyboard/piano and drums. I have been playing the drums since I was 8 and the keyboard/piano since sophomore year in college. I like all genres, rap, gospel, hip hop, classical, and rock and roll.  They are all great to listen too.

Was that you playing in Bryan Scott’s (Safety for Bills) video called Dedicated?
Yeah, that was me, it was real cool, it was something positive. Most NFL players want to be in rap videos, It felt great to be with other NFL athletes working on an R&B song.

What do you love the most about the Buffalo Bills organization?
The fact that they gave me the opportunity and taking a chance on a small school guy. I think we can win here, we have the unity and we all play hard for each other. The fans are the best too, a real blue collar area, where the fans embrace and love their team.

Do you think exposure is the biggest problem for these kids coming out of the lower divisions?
Yeah, I feel that they don’t get the same exposure, if you have more attention more scouts will be out there, more games on TV. Small Schools are not on television that much and you don’t get the NFL scouts to attend your games, because they are always at the bigger schools.

If you could tell these young players advice on how to prepare themselves now that most of their seasons are over, what would you say to them?
Stay Hungry, this process is not easy, you might not feel that you are getting the opportunities or the looks you might want, but when you have an opportunity, get the most of it. Especially in these upcoming Bowl games, they need to showcase their talents against other talents.

I see you have been re-tweeting my Diamond in the Rough Articles about other young FCS, DII, and DII players that are coming up, what do you like most about them?
It is great that small school guys are getting the exposure, if you are not writing these articles then how are they going to get their names out there.  Nobody is writing about small school guys, I really like what you do with the articles.

Who is your favorite player growing up, and favorite team?
I was a Cowboys fan growing up, because I liked Deion Sanders. My favorite player right now, is Ray Lewis when I began watching film of defense, you begin to love his passion for the game.

What are your dreams after your career in Football?
Be a successful person, living life to the fullest and enjoying it with my family and friends.

Now I have a few questions from our followers on Twitter, Facebook and The Buffalo Bills Message Board. 

Would you prefer the 3 – 4 or 4 – 3 defense?

I don’t like one better than the other, they both bring something to the table and both have their pros and cons. I like multiple fronts, because I can be utilized differently. If you are in the same front, teams can figure out what you are doing and beat you easier. From Denverbill of the Buffalo Bills Message Board

Which player on the team do you look to as a mentor or at least someone that you feel you can approach for advice?
Andre Davis, ILB and Team Captain, he is a good guy and I know he understands the game.

From Intimidatortj of the Buffalo Bills Message Board

How far away do you think the Bills defense is from becoming a top 10 defense, and what is most needed to get there?
I don’t believe we are far off, from being a top 10 defense. The hardest thing is staying strong as a unit and doing it every play. You cannot take any play off, because mental errors can hurt you as a team.

From William of Washington, D.C.
I would like to Thank Arthur Moats for this opportunity and be sure to follow us on twitter @dabody52 (Arthur Moats) and @drocksthaparty (Damond Talbot)