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Bill Parcells on Fincher

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; MOBILE, Ala. -- Alfred Fincher drew up enough courage to approach Bill Parcells Wednesday for a conversation that Fincher called the best story of his life. Just as Fincher began to introduce himself to the Tuna, Parcells stopped Fincher cold. ...

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Old 04-24-2005, 11:25 AM   #1
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Bill Parcells on Fincher

MOBILE, Ala. -- Alfred Fincher drew up enough courage to approach Bill Parcells Wednesday for a conversation that Fincher called the best story of his life.

Just as Fincher began to introduce himself to the Tuna, Parcells stopped Fincher cold.

"I know who you are," Parcells told Fincher, the University of Connecticut linebacker and arguably the least heralded player in Saturday’s Senior Bowl.

"It really got me fired up ... almost too riled up (for practice later in the day) because a man like that tells you something ... I really took it to heart," Fincher said. "He told me I was a great linebacker and that I’m going to be a helluva linebacker (in the NFL) someday. I don’t know how he knew about me, but he did. And right away he went to the stories about how he used to coach linebackers, and he started talking about Foxboro because he knew I’m from Massachusetts.

"At the end of the conversation, he told me I was going to be a real good linebacker in the NFL someday. That’s special, man. I almost had a tear."

Fincher has been the eternal underdog, whether at Norwood High School or at UConn. One is the total number of Division I-A schools that recruited Fincher, and even that school was in a transition from Division I-AA.

By NFL standards, the 6-foot-1, 237-pound Fincher may be undersized. He also may not be the fastest linebacker on the stopwatch. But he proved to have superb instincts at UConn, and here he’s created enough of a buzz to pique the interest of the likes of Parcells, two-time Super Bowl coach of the Giants and current coach of the Dallas Cowboys. He also has drawn the attention of John Dorsey, a UConn All-America linebacker and the director of college scouting for the Green Bay Packers.

"He’s a high-character guy with a burning desire," Dorsey said. "He was low on the radar screen in the fall, but he has been like a phoenix rising. He shows feel and instinct in both run and pass."

Fincher has grown weary of being low on the radar screen, tired of being an afterthought when the top linebackers in the country are discussed.

"But they always say the NFL doesn’t miss guys," Fincher said. "Well, I’m out here in prime time now and I’m going to make sure they don’t miss me."

Fincher didn’t find out he would be joining teammate Dan Orlovsky at the Senior Bowl until about four days before he had to report. But when he got the call from a Senior Bowl official, he responded by promising that they won’t regret it. That’s all he ever asked for -- the opportunity. He hasn’t failed with it yet.

"The word around has been pretty good," Fincher said. "They are starting to notice me. You know what, Tom Brady was a sixth-round draft pick. Maybe they just keep pushing me back and won’t get the hint. But when I get there, they’re going to know, because I can’t hide on national TV every Sunday.

"Coach (Randy) Edsall always said, ‘You put it on film, you put it on tape, they can’t hide from it.’"

With hundreds of scouts converging on Mobile this week, they’re all looking for the prototype this or that. It’s the age-old debate between an overachiever who produces versus maybe the underachiever who projects better at the next level.

Fincher didn’t even dazzle college recruiters coming out of high school, so how is he supposed to make them take notice now, playing against the top seniors in the country?

Just watch, vows Fincher.

"I’m a football player and somebody’s going to find a football player," Fincher said. "If they want to take a 6-4 guy who can’t play and miss a 6-1 linebacker who can play ... I can’t do anything about that. But I’m going to get somewhere."

The radar screen is picking him up now.

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Old 04-24-2005, 11:37 AM   #2
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Bill Parcells on Fincher

Hate to say it, but nice find. Who wouldn\'t want a guy with his character on our team? He has a great attitude and is a \"football\" player. Happy to have him on our team.
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Old 04-25-2005, 01:30 AM   #3
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Bill Parcells on Fincher

Wow. Thats cool.
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