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Houston Texans

12 Questions with DL Maliek Collins | Drew's Dozen

1) DD: You're number 97. What's the story behind it?
Collins: There's no story behind it. I was 96 my rookie year in Dallas. I was there for four years. I wanted to take it up a notch. So I just went 97 last year and it was the best number for me this year, too.

2) DD: It's hot out here. How come you're wearing a hoodie?
Collins: I like to get nice and lean before the season. Trim off any little fat that I got, and get out here and be my best when the season comes.

3) DD: It seems like every day after practice you're always working with one of your fellow defensive linemen. How come they work with you?
Collins: I don't really know. I like to work with guys, even if I'm even if I'm not physically doing it myself. I still get the mental reps being right there with them doing it and making sure they're doing it the right way, too. They know I'm not going to sugarcoat them. I'm going to tell them exactly how it is.

4) DD: That's kind of how we get better, hearing the truth, isn't it?
Collins: Straight up. Yeah. I'm an honest person.

5) DD: What's better about you now?
Collins: I just feel like it's like wine. I get better with time. So I got more and more reps in this league and I think I'm getting better every rep.

6) DD: You got a favorite wine?
Collins: Nah. I don't drink.

7) DD: What do people on the outside not know about you guys on the defensive line?
Collins: I know it's a group that I want to be a part of. That's why I come out here and I grind every day: to make sure I'm a part of that group.

8) DD: You were a hell of a wrestler in high school. How much does that background help you now?
Collins: It helps a lot when it comes to leverage. But that's pretty much it.

9) DD: Conditioning-wise, what was tougher: high school football or high school wrestling?
Collins: High school wrestling for sure.

10) DD: What was the hardest part of it?
Collins: The pointless running. In football, you do football drills, and you get tired doing that, but it's still football. But in wrestling, running has nothing to do with what you do on the mat.

11) DD: I'm assuming you wrestled as a heavyweight. You never had to cut weight, did you?
Collins: Yeah, I did. I was 298 one time and I had to cut 13 pounds in two days.

12) DD: You went 48-0 in your wrestling matches senior year. How many times in those 48 were you truly challenged by the other guy?
Collins: I was challenged in all of them. There was always a good competition. That's why I didn't win my junior year, because I took it for granted. I learned that lesson early on: that I can't go out there and act like I'm just going to beat the person in front of me. I gotta go, no matter what.

BAKER'S DOZEN) DD: What's your perfect meal?
Collins: Some fried rice, shrimp and chicken combination fried rice.

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