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GridIron Guide with NY Giants Rashad Jennings

By Dontaira Terrell
Posted On Feb 07, 2016
GridIron Guide with NY Giants Rashad Jennings

Elite running back on the field and stand-up philanthropist off the gridiron Rashad Jennings exemplary skills extend far beyond the athletic norm. The 30-year old has propelled his NFL career to exceptional heights by serving as the New York Giants leading rusher for the 2015 season but also through his noble efforts in order to give back to the community.

The Rashad Jennings Foundation’s numerous charitable contributions have not only redefined the mission of student athletes and youth by providing life skills and mentorship but also promoting health, fitness, and educational values. His selfless giving has afforded him the opportunity to be recognized as a top finalist for, The Byron “Whizzer” White Award. Which according to the official website of the National Football Players Association [NFLPA] “recognizes players who go above and beyond to perform community service in their team cities and hometowns” and is the “highest honor the NFLPA can bestow on a player.”

A trailblazer that is igniting a path for others to follow suit, we had an opportunity to personally speak with the RB [#23] about his game day playlist, whether or not he has a pre/post game ritual and lots more. For the ladies who will be tuned into Sunday’s Super Bowl game [Panthers vs Broncos] and need a quick 101 tutorial on the basic fundamentals of football, not to worry because Rashad has you covered!


Photo Credit: Official Instagram of Rashad Jennings
Photo Credit: Official Instagram of Rashad Jennings


New You: What is the easiest play explained in 30 seconds or less?

Rashad Jennings: The easiest play explained is called a Victory. At the end of the game when the offensive team has the football in their possession regardless if they want a play or not. It is generally used to run the clock down because it has already been determined that they are going to win the game [no matter what].

The quarterback will take center and everyone will assume legal formation when a player gives themselves up from a physical aspect of “taking a knee.” The referee will then enter, blowing the whistle to signify the end of a play. It is the easiest play in the world and the best play in the game.

NY: Best advice you can give to someone who doesn’t know anything about football but will be tuned into this Sunday’s Super Bowl game? 

RJ: Quite simply put, the football field is 120 yards, there are 100 yards in a play and 10 yards on each side of the end zone. The main priority of the offensive team is to get into the end zone and the objective of the defensive team is to prevent that from happening. It’s similar to a human game of chess match because with every play the offense is trying to figure out a way to get through the defense.

Photo Credit: Official Instagram of Rashad Jennings
Photo Credit: Official Instagram of Rashad Jennings

NY: What exactly is a running back?

RJ: A running back is a position that dots the eye in the backfield behind the quarterback. It’s unique because we’re [the running backs] the last line. We are the guys fighting for extra yardage. When we receive the ball it is handed off to us through the quarterback and we have to run between tackles.

The running backs carry various hats on the football field because it’s the one position that does everyone’s position. We have to ultimately try and run through the linebackers, as well as block like an offensive lineman and catch like a receiver. Plus, we have to be tough like a tight end and smart; treating the entire field like a quarterback does.

NY: Would you say that is one of the reasons why the running back is such an important position to the team?

RJ: No doubt, if you don’t have a good one out there just like if you don’t have a good quarterback it’s going to be a little hard to win but every position is very important to the team.

Photo Credit: Official Instagram of Rashad Jennings
Photo Credit: Official Instagram of Rashad Jennings


NY: Do you have any go-to tunes or specific music that you listen to in order to help you get your head in the game?

RJ: Well, I’m a different breed and unapologetically so. I listen to a variety of music that’s fun and will put me in a good mood. I also enjoy listening to a little R&B that will help me mellow out or play something that will get me hyped before a game.

Generally speaking, I really just enjoy getting lost in my thoughts and try to relax in order to get my head in the game, but honestly, you never know with me, I might play Trey Songz or Chris Brown I even bump Justin Bieber (laughs).

I really like his new album! I listen to the album in its entirety and I know every single song word for word. Recently, I appeared on a lip syncing battle and performed a few of his songs. By the way, have you heard his new album?

NY: Yes, I actually just heard his album and I really like it too! I guess you can say I am now a Belieber (laughs).


NY: Do you personally have any pre or post game rituals?

RJ: I do not have any pre or post game rituals but I definitely have a routine. During the pregame it’s very important to warm-up because my warm-ups are extremely pivotal to my overall success. I then shower, get myself ready for the game and of course make sure that I pray.


NY: During the off-season, what do you most look forward to? 

RJ: During the off-season, I look forward to traveling, training and networking. I really love them all because they all serve as beautiful opportunities that allow me to open up doors to the highest level, especially being in New York City out of all places. Maximizing these chances and opportunities are extremely crucial for us athletes because we have such a small window. Even if you are considered to have a long career it’s relatively short in comparison to most people’s careers as well as other professions.

This current off season I’m really excited about a few projects on the horizon. I’m working on a cartoon with Nickelodeon, I’m appearing in a few television shows while simultaneously working on my foundation


NY: What do you think are three key terms you must know in order to follow the game of football?

RJ: First down is extremely important to know as well as a touchdown and becoming familiarized with what the exact penalties are.


NY: In terms of quarterback styles, what do you believe [if any] are the major differences between Cam Newton and Peyton Manning? 

RJ: They are polar opposites from an athleticism standpoint and how they attack the game and respond to pressures. These are two elite players that will ultimately, completely change what is needed in a quarterback in 2016.


NY: Any Super Bowl game day predictions?

RJ: (Hmmm…) I definitely believe it’s going to be a blowout because I think Carolina is going to blow Denver out (laughs).


For more info or to connect with Rashad Jennings please visit: 

Official Website: http://www.rashadjennings.com

Personal Foundation: http://rashadjenningsfoundation.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rashadjennings23/

Twitter: @RashadJennings

Instagram: @rashadjennings