What is your background? Where did you grow up and how were your childhood years (family life, etc)?
I grew up in a little town called Accokeek, in Maryland. I was raised by two terrific role models in my mother and father. I did a little bit of everything as a kid. I played football, basketball, track, and even taekwondo. I was a very active youth and I enjoyed playing outdoors along with my share of video games like any other kid.
When and how did you get started playing football?
I started playing football at the age of 12, as an organized activity to keep myself busy. I was kind of a mischievous adolescent (LOL).
Where did you play high school and college football?
I played high school ball at Gwynn Park in Brandywine, Maryland. I then attended the University of Hofstra, in Long Island, New York.
What was the biggest adjustment going from high school to college to professional football?
I’d say the biggest adjustments transitioning from each level would not only be the speed of the game, but the cerebral aspect as well. Everything is a lot more broken down and game planned as well as the information you receive from coaching is intensified.
How many NFL teams have you played for?
I played for the Philadelphia Eagles and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers my first year. I’ve been with the New England Patriots ever since.
How has your experience been with the New England Patriots organization?
My experience has been unbelievable with New England. They are a first class organization from top to bottom, and the fan support is very “die hard” to say the least. They have tremendous ownership and coaching and I’ve never learned so much about the game of football than I have being part of this organization.
What do you enjoy most about playing the game of football?
I enjoy just what the game of football is all about the most. It’s called a contact sport for a reason. I love being able to go out on the field and be able to hit someone (and it being perfectly acceptable).
What is your typical in-season and off-season day-to-day normal routine like?
My typical in-season routine is very busy. I usually workout from 8 to 4ish during the week. As everyone knows, we work on the weekends. Tuesday is usually players day off, but you like to get ahead on your opponent the next game so a lot of guys go into the facility on that day as well. So a good number of players work seven days a week during the season.
The off-season is just what it’s supposed to be, “off”. Basically, it’s a time to catch up with family and friends and just relax as much as you can from a brutal and grinding past football season. My schedule is pretty much to play it by ear on a day-to-day basis.
What does your typical in-season and off-season diet look like (meal schedule, foods, etc)?
No comment about my diet (LOL)! It’s not the worst, but by no means is it tops in the league. I try to stay away from fast food and fried food during the season for the most part. But in the off-season, it’s no holds barred!
What is your typical in-season and off-season workout routine (how many days do you train and what type of workouts)?
My typical in-season workout is normally what the strength and conditioning coach has developed for me, in regards to a weight room plan. In the off-season, I never like starting from scratch, so I maintain my strength and conditioning on my own with my trainer back in Maryland. It’s nothing too high impact because you still want to use this time to recover from a grueling season.
Do the Patriots have team dietitians and trainers who help with nutrition and workouts for the players?
We do have a team nutritionist who is very informative and insightful. He does an amazing job creating nutrition plans specific for each player.
What is your favorite healthy food or meal?
My favorite healthy meal is baked salmon with green beans and rice. My favorite meal in general is any type of entree, because I’m a side dish kinda guy. I love mac-n-cheese and candied yams, which I can eat every day.
What is your favorite cheat meal or junk food you enjoy most?
I cheat all the time as far as my diet goes. But if I had to name a favorite cheat meal, it would definitely be Chick-fil-La.
How did you and your wife first meet?
My wife and I went to high school together, but we were not high school sweethearts as everyone presumes.
Is your wife into health and fitness also?
My wife was blessed with great genes, but she has been more into health and fitness since we’ve been together.
Do you do most of the cooking or does your wife?
My wife does most of the cooking for sure, but I’m no stranger behind the stove myself. Breakfast is my area of expertise.
How does it feel having your first baby boy?
There are no words or feelings in trying to describe having my first child. It’s without a doubt the greatest gift that anyone can receive. I just wake up and look forward to each and every day because it’s so amazing to see the progression and changes within him already.
What is the toughest thing about being a new father?
The toughest thing about being a new father has to be patience. Babies need a lot time, devotion, and attention. And I’ve never had a greater appreciation of sleep than I do now.
Are you going to get little Kyle Jr started playing football at an early age?
If KJ wants to play football or get into organized sports at an early age, it will be perfectly fine with me. But one thing I won’t do as a father, is force it upon him. They have studies out there that show a direct correlation between kids playing football at a young age and brain damage as they become older adults.
Will you and your wife raise your son with a focus on health and fitness (healthy diet and exercise)?
I think it may just come with the nature of things and KJ will be a product of his environment. I’ve been a gym rat since I can remember, and that has not only affected my wife positively but the rest of family as well. So in this case, I can’t see the apple falling too far from the tree.
What exactly does your charity work involve?
We’re still in the process of getting our own foundation off the ground. But I’m still very active in the New England community as far as charity goes. We mostly do a lot of work with our own Patriots Volunteerism Foundation. That varies from visiting kids at schools, hospitals, etc. We go out in the community and promote different aspects like reading, healthy eating, etc.
Who do you admire and look up to most in life?
I admire my parents the most because of their sacrifice in giving and providing me and my sister with everything we needed in order to become successful. They are true demonstrators on doing whatever it takes for their children and showing what the true meaning of family is all about.
Who or what do you attribute all of your hard work, dedication and perseverance to?
Any and everything that’s gotten me to this point, I most definitely attribute it to the support of my family. They’ve been there since day one, through the ups and most importantly, the downs. My parents have never missed a game or event, and made sure I always got where I needed to be. And no matter what I choose to do with my life, they have been supportive since the very beginning. So, it’s only right that I give them back everything in return, plus interest.
What is the best advice you can give young kids whose biggest dream is to play professional football?
My advice for kids aspiring to be in the NFL would be, first do the little things right. Do well in school, respect your parents, teachers, coaches as well as your peers. It’s all about putting yourself in a position to be successful. Too many kids never give themselves the opportunity to reach their dreams, whether it’s because of grades or a poor attitude. So if you do the little things right, and if you have the talent, they come looking for you.
What are you most interested in focusing on when your professional football days are over (other careers, interests, etc)?
As far as post career, I’m most interested in media as far as broadcasting or being an analyst. Ultimately, I would like to be on the silver screen. I love movies and to be able to have the opportunity to be apart of one is another bar I have set for myself.