Vince Young and the Restless
So, Vince Young was just 14 of 29 for 155 yards last Sunday versus Dallas. And?! What were the numbers from your first NFL start? Relax. The Tennessee Titans franchise quarterback, drafted third in the '06 draft, will have better days. It may take a few seasons before the agile Young showcases the all-around brilliance he did his MVP-earning night at last year's Rose Bowl, but it'll come. BET is so certain of the Houston native's star power that it had a crew follow the 23-year-old's nearly every move with its cameras for the revealing new reality show, Next Level: Vince Young (premieres Wednesday, October 4 at 9:30PM/EST).
How are you holding up with all the tape recorders and cameras in your face?
I'm a humble guy, man. I'm just taking it for a blessing, for one. Just knowing the background that I come from, I'm good. I'm getting used to a lot of this stuff, so I just stay calm and continue being a role model and the person I am.
So, you're not tired of all the attention yet?
Nah, not yet. I'm just chillin'. Man, it ain't as bad as people think it is. It ain't too bad. And I try to schedule it so that it's not too much going on. I'm trying to learn this offense, for one. I try to schedule stuff so that it'll be comfortable for me.
What's been your proudest moment on the field thus far?
Ah, man. I threw a touchdown this [past] weekend [vs. San Diego]. It was my first touchdown. I was excited about thatâ€”even though we were losing. It was a bad situation, but throwing that [was good]. Guys said I wasn't going to be a quarterback on the next level of the NFL. I went out there and took care of business and got a touchdown pass. I'm just excited about that whole situation.
Are black QBs in college like Ohio State's Troy Smith and Florida's Chris Leak given the same shot as the Chad Hennes and Brady Quinns?
If you just look at me and [Atlanta's Michael] Vick, we run the ball pretty good as well as throw the ball. They're gonna keep saying that we don't need to be playing that position, but at the same time, we winnin' ball games and we're very intelligent behind there. Overall, Chris Leak and the other guys are great athletes. But there's something about me and Vick. They keep criticizing us because we're great runners. It don't bother me. It just lets me know that we're doing something right. Man, that's my motivation. They keep saying this. They keep saying that. [Critics say] I can't do it. And then I come into the game and I do it. [Critics change their tunes and say] Oh, yeah. He's gonna be all right! So, it's just like Vick. But he's winning ball games. He's not worried about what they say. He just goes out there and plays with his teammates and leads them guys to victory. That's all you want to do is keep him in there.
Why did BET approach you about this program?
I just think they liked me as a person and some of the things that I was doing as a young man. Some older guys will wait for a while to do start doing things. I wanted to get out their early. I wanted to start early and try to reach out to some of the kids in the community. [Baltimore Ravens QB] Steve McNair did that to me. I wanted to do that for my community. BET saw that and they saw me as a person who likes to have fun, honor God and a lot of different things. They want to just show the world with this reality show. It's going to show a whole lot. It's where I come from. It's how I act. It's basically my background. It's also my trail from college to the NFL and how the same things are going on. I had to prove that I could do it in college. They're still saying that I can't do it on the next level. I'm going to do it on the next level as well.
Being four weeks into your first NFL season, what has surprised you most about your time there?
Ah, man. A lot of people love football. In college they love it a lot, but when you get on this level, everybody knows about you. They know your history, your stats. I mean, a lot of stuff is going on. But at the same time, the fans really love their team so much. All you got to do is go out there and play the game and entertain'em. They love football so much.
What does a black dude for fun in Nashville?
Man, come hang out with me!
What's a typical Saturday evening out with Vince Young like?
This time of the year, I ain't really doin' too much. We're in the hotel before the game. I go have a nice steak and probably go watch a movie. Then I'll get back to the hotel because of the curfew. Most of the times there's a couple of places to go to in the â€˜Ville. It's some great places to go and just kick it and relax. I be chillin' with people in the community. You know me. I'm gonna be the same.