Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Keenan Lewis prepares for the NFL team's practice in Pittsburgh Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
Posted: Thursday, 14 March 2013 6:38PM
WWL Exclusive: First interview with CB Keenan Lewis
Jay Vise Reporting
WWL's Bobby Hebert and Kristian Garic were the first media members to interview new Saints cornerback Keenan Lewis after he signed a five-year deal to return home to play for the Black & Gold.
Lewis said that being recruited by a team that had Drew Brees at the helm was definitely a factor.
"I watch Drew Brees a lot. Everything that he brings to those guys...the passion that he has for the game, it's an honor to play with a guy like that. He's giving his all, every single play. So that just motivates me more to just follow along with him...He's a tremendous guy, and one of the best leaders in the game, and I've never met him. I can just tell, by the way he carries his team. I took that into consideration, to have an opportunity to have a leader like that, and to play for him, I was very excited.
Keenan, who racked up great numbers at O. Perry Walker, talked about what it is like to be able to play for his hometown:
"When I first came out of Oregon State into the Draft, I was dreaming that (the Saints) would pick me. So, when they didn't I had to go to Pittsburg, so I was a little jealous...I always told my family members, one day I'd like to end my career in my city. So, just to have the opportunity to be here for a long time...I'm ready to go, I'm excited."
Bobby asked him about being the "complete" cornerback, being stout in the run-support game, and if his size and weight help him tackle runners.
"It helps me a lot. I train extremely hard, and I prepare for that. In this lead, it's about covering. With those guys, we're the last line of defense...I try to make tackles that come my way, so that we don't have touchdowns scored on us."
And, the Cajun Cannon noted that Lewis has the brains to go with the brawn, being a four-time Academic All-Pac 10 choice
"Definitely, that was a great honor to have. I come from a background full of teachers. My Mom is a teacher...that is something I strive for, I'm a great role model in my community, and in the city of New Orleans. These kids and everyone look up to me to do the right thing, so I try to do do everything possible, so I know that one day one of these kids can follow my footsteps."
In fact, Lewis confirmed to us that us he turned down bigger money from other teams for the chance to come home and play in the Superdome.
"This is one of those opportunities, a dream, I couldn't pass up. You know, when you're chasing a dream, it's not always about how much money you can get. Sometimes, you just got to capture it. I talked to Coach Payton, and Rob Ryan, and all the guys on the staff, and I really enjoyed myself."
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Series History: The Panthers lead the series 19-17
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