3.3.18

James Daniels: The King Of Versatility

James Daniels

Iowa’s James Daniels is one of the top centers in… Wait, let’s try that again. Iowa’s James Daniels is one of the top guards in the 2018 rookie class. Or should it be tackle? It’s hard to tell what position to call him yet, but no matter where he winds up playing, the versatile offensive lineman is a major name to watch during this year’s draft. 

Daniels started two games at guard during his 2015 freshman season before switching over to center for his remaining two seasons. He excelled at both positions, and with his impressive athleticism and length, a possible move to tackle isn’t off the table at the next level either. 

How has he been able to be so versatile? “I feel like I have two things that really help me: I’m smart and athletic,” Daniels explained. “You need to be smart so you can learn each position and switch over when something happens, and you need to be athletic so that you don’t have to worry about being beat on the edge.”   

The Iowa football program also played a big role in Daniels’ ability to develop – just look at all the lineman talent they’ve produced for the pro game over the last few years. “(Head) Coach Ferenz and (Strength and Conditioning) Coach Doyle are the biggest reason for that,” he said. “It’s a developmental program, so we take guys who may not be ready to play right away and grow them into the best players that they can become.”  

And as Daniels preps for his own shot at the next level, he’ll have two excellent role models to give him advice. 

“My dad played football at Ohio State and in the pros, so when I was young, he introduced me to the sport and taught me a lot of life lessons. And my brother (LeShun Daniels Jr.) is two years older than me. He’s my best friend and we would play a lot of backyard football together. He’s in the pros now too and his journey – he got cut, picked up, cut again – really made me look at is work ethic and appreciate it.” 

So he’s got the family pedigree, but Daniels is also his own player. And whether he is asked to be a center, guard, tackle, or, heck, even tight end in the pros, it’s clear he has everything he needs to be successful. 

 


Thanks to James Daniels for his time and make sure to check out the Eastbay Blog for more exclusive stories on the biggest names of the 2018 rookie class.

Alvin Kamara Featured

The Two Sides Of Alvin Kamara

We got a chance to sit down with the New Orleans star Alvin Kamara and talk about what makes him so unique on and off the field.

Nike Football Cleats: Vapor, Alpha, And Force

Are you Team Vapor, Team Alpha, or Team Force? Nike has 3 different cleats for 3 different types of players. Which Nike Football Cleat will you choose?

Best Football Gear by Position Featured

This Year’s Best Football Gear: Cleats And Gloves Built For How You Play

Each football player is unique, so your gear should be too. Let’s help you find the perfect gear for your play style. Here's this year's Best Football Gear.

Donte Jackson Featured

Four Reasons Donte Jackson Is So Fast

Carolina rookie cornerback Donte Jackson is one of the fastest players in football. Find out how his speed is on another level.

Nike The Opening Finals 1

Live At The Opening Finals

Tune in throughout the week for daily updates from The Opening Finals, the nation's premiere high school 7-on-7 football event.

Nike Vapor Untouchable 3 Pro Featured

The Nike Vapor Untouchable 3 Pro: Making The Game’s Fastest Even Faster

Ezekiel Elliott lives for big moments, and he has the perfect cleat for these situations: the Nike Vapor Untouchable 3 Pro.

7 on 7 football gear featured

7-on-7 Football Gear Guide

From cleats to gloves to apparel, here is your 2018 7-on-7 Football Gear Guide. Get the latest gear from the biggest brands.

Jalen Ramsey Featured

10 Things You Need To Know About Jalen Ramsey

Take a second and get to know Jacksonville cornerback Jalen Ramsey — one of the most interesting and talented players in all of football.

Jordan Retro 11 Football Featured

Jordan Retro 11 Football Cleats: The GOAT Joins The Huddle

The Jordan Retro 11 Football Cleats are finally here — they carry that iconic look you love and are built to perform on the gridiron.

Mike Hughes

Mike Hughes: Returning To The Top

Corner Mike Hughes may now be one of the top players at his position in the 2018 rookie class, but his road to pro football has been anything but easy.

Tanner Carew

Tanner Carew: The Best Long Snapper In The Nation

Pro football's biggest scouting event is an opportunity for 336 athletes to showcase their skills to pro teams. Tanner Carew is in a league of his own, however.

Ronnie Harrison

Get To Know Ronnie Harrison

Alabama safety Ronnie Harrison is a big--time hitter and he's ready to dominate against the best football players on the planet.

See More