3.2.18

Vita Vea: Destined For Big Things

Vita Vea

Vita Vea is a big dude.  

Actually, that’s an understatement – at 6’4”, 344 pounds, the former University of Washington nose tackle is massive, even by NFL standards. 

So it’s kind of crazy that in college he actually got the chance to play quarterback. Well… sort of. 

“I was a wildcat quarterback in high school,” Vea explained. “Once I showed my ability to run, our head coach eventually gave me a chance to throw the ball. But when it was time, I became way too focused on who I was throwing to and making sure that I threw the perfect spiral. So, I went back, did the three step drop, and let it go. But it was horrible and the ball went like 30 yards in the air. That was the last chance I ever had to be QB.”  

Well, maybe the life of a signal caller wasn’t in the cards for Vea, but he may have picked up a different skill from his time behind center: his fast feet. The largest man on the field shouldn’t also be one of the quickest, but this 23-year-old defies those odds. He’s not out there to just clog lanes, he’s there to make plays. 

At a position that usually doesn’t show up on the stat sheet, Vea was still able to rack up 8.5 sacks and 12 tackles for losses over the last two seasons. He was the anchor to a stout Washington defense and helped push the team to another outstanding season.   

And the person who gave him the push he needed every step of the way during his career is his older brother. “I was that little brother who followed my older brother everywhere,” Vea said. “No matter what I did, he would always lead me in the right direction. This included playing sports. That was always a big thing for us, but he also taught me so much about life and playing that extra role as a volunteer in the community.” 

Whoever drafts Vea in April will be getting an asset to the team and to the city itself. But they’ll also be getting someone with a true passion for the game. 

“The best advice I could give to a younger athlete is ‘have as much fun as you can,’” he said. “’Time flies fast and before you know it, you’ll be at the Combine, getting ready for the pros. So make sure to enjoy all of it.

 


Thanks to Vita Vea 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.

DK Metcalf – Built for Battle

DK Metcalf took the league by storm during his rookie season, but his business is far from over. Read more to find out what's next for the physical phenom.

SPEED REIGNS SUPREME

From the football factory that is South Florida, Marquise Brown is looking to become the league's next great deep threat. As he enters his second season with Baltimore what can we expect from the young speedster?

Three drills to improve your quickness on the football field

Let us take you through three simple drills to improve you speed and quickness on the football field.

Nike Football: The Bond of a Brotherhood

Football is the ultimate team sport. And stars like George Kittle, Aaron Donald, Stephon Gilmore, and Cooper Kupp know it. Find out more about the brotherhood of football.

adidas and Parley for the Oceans push to end plastic waste

adidas is committed to limiting plastic waste in sports. Read how the brand plans to bring their commitment to life, starting with a sustainable football field.

Five Draft Sleepers You Should Keep an Eye On

With football's annual draft just around the corner, here are five names you need to know that could fly under the radar this year.

Coach Lo’s Tips For A Successful Recovery

Steven Lo shares five tips for a player’s successful recovery after practices and game days.

The Nike Vapor Edge 360 Football Cleat: A New Level of Speed and Agility

Nike's newest cleat, The Vapor Edge 360, is all about speed. Find out more about this new, cutting-edge cleat and pick up a pair for yourself!

Be the Best Version of Yourself

Athletics and football create a special bond in Woodinville, Washington. Check out why the Falcons operate less like a football team and more like a family.

Davante Adams runs under colorful parachute on field.

5 Pieces of Advice from Davante Adams

Through his words and actions Davante Adams wants to change the future. Learn to leave a legacy like him with these five pieces of advice.

Haskins Featured Image

Dwayne Haskins Jr.: The Future King

The hype is real. Dwayne Haskins has a reputation of exceeding expectations and plans to continue that trend on his way to becoming the future king of Washington.

Savage Featured Image

Darnell Savage Jr.: 3 tips to prepare yourself for success

Eastbay's July cover athlete Darnell Savage Jr. gives insight on how to prepare yourself for success.

See More