Q: How much contact did you have with them [the Patriots]?
NS: Fairly limited contact.
Q: Did you come up here for a visit?
NS: No, I never came up for a visit.
Q: Can you explain how that unfolded, because I believe you were scheduled to do so and then it got cancelled?
NS: I don't know exactly what happened. I was scheduled to visit. The minute before I left it was cancelled. That's all I know.
Q: You say you really wanted to come here. Is part of that the fact that they've had such offensive line success here?
NS: All of those guys do great and Scarnecchia is an incredible coach and that's absolutely part of it.
Q: Is there someone in the league you model your game after?
NS: I just play my game and I'm going to do what Coach Scarnecchia tells me to. That's who I'm going to model my game after.
He played 2,540 out of a possible 2,542 plays on offense his sophomore through senior seasons; of those, exactly 1,400 were called passing plays, and he allowed just five sacks those three years. He allowed 21 pressures overall (14 as a sophomore), so the man he was blocking influenced a pass play 26 times in those 1,400 plays, or just 1.8 percent of his career. (Note: This means that he allowed only seven pressures his entire junior and senior year)
Owns the work ethic to become a Pro Bowl offensive tackle. In the spring of 2009, he was awarded the John Wooten Award for outstanding work ethic and the offensive line's Iron Buffalo Award for hard work, dedication, toughness and total poundage lifted in the weight room. He was also a co-recipient of the team's Greg Biekert Award for attention to detail.
Very good student, had a 3.93 GPA in high school and was one of 16 National Football Foundation Scholar-Athletes in 2010.
He was also named one of the recipients of the team's Gold Group Commitment Award which recognizes excellent with class.
His senior year, he also had 10 touchdown blocks, allowed just one quarterback sack and three pressures while being flagged for just one penalty.
Scott Wright: What are your favorite and least favorite parts of playing football?
Nate Solder: My favorite parts are the competition and the camaraderie. My least favorite parts are all the negative associations with football players. I feel like a few bad eggs ruin the whole bunch.
Scott Wright: What will you buy with your first NFL paycheck?
Nate Solder: I think I’ll put most of it in the bank, and then maybe buy a pickup [truck].
The videos are after the jump!
Nate Solder takes on an NFL Scout in a drill- and the "scout" is former NFL linebacker Matt Russell, who won the Butkus Award in 1996 as the "Nation's Best College Linebacker." Not too shabby.
Nate Solder shows off his quickness on Sports Science. They say that every time he blocks someone, he hits them with the same force as Dwight Freeney tackling a player.