NFL DraftProspect Interviews

2020 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Desmond Fairell, CB, Carson-Newman

Desmond Fairell of Carson Newman is a player to keep an eye on for the upcoming season. He is always around the ball.
  • Desmond Fairell aka “Des”
  • 5’11
  • 185
  • Cornerback
  • Carson-Newman
  • Twitter: d2_fairell

Tell us about your hometown, and what you love most about it?

  • Growing up in the city of Miami is fun yet tough but I wouldn’t want to do it any other way. One of the things I love most about where I grew up is the competitive nature that we bring to the table. No matter the size, the talent or strength, we have the heart and mindset that we can compete with anybody across the country, we feel we are the best at what we do and not only would we say it, but we can show it. Being raised in Miami can be seen as a privilege for some, but for others, it’s not as easy because of the violence that Miami tends to have. Don’t get me wrong, I love my city and wouldn’t wish to be raised anywhere else, but I just want better for my family and I feel other athletes in Miami feel the same so that’s why we all play with that chip on our shoulder.

List these three in order of importance and why: Film study, Strength and Conditioning, and Practice?
  • In my opinion, practice comes first because I was always taught that the way you practice will always reflect the way you perform in the game. “If you practice good habits, then that’s become apart of you” and vice versa. Second has to be film and study because even if you are not the biggest, fastest, strongest and most conditioned if you study film and understand what the opposing team is trying to do, you will always find yourself in a good position to make a play for your team. Even if you are not a starter, you may never know when your name is going to be called but as long as you are not lost and know what to expect from the opposing team, you should do just fine. Lastly, I have to go with strength and conditioning. Although I chose this as my last priority or importance from the three choices, doesn’t mean this isn’t as important. Only thing I can say about this one is, “hard work always beats talent”.

What do you worry about and why?

  • Me personally, I worry about not being successful in life, whether it’s on the football field or in the classroom, I just want to succeed in life. Not only do I want to succeed for myself, but I feel like my family see the potential in me and expect great things out of me in life. And honestly, I feel like I owe it to them because of the support system they provide to me and the motivation they give me to keep going.

Give me an example of when you failed at something. How did you react and how did you overcome failure?

  • An example of when I failed at something was my freshman year in high school. I went to school with that junior high mindset and that mindset got me nowhere but ineligible to play football. That humbled me and made me want to go harder in life because I knew the kind of life I wanted to live in the future. So, I eventually ended up transferring to another high school, where I became eligible to play spring football my sophomore year.

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

  • Honestly, my teammates don’t speak on my qualities to me, but if I had to say what was being said behind closed doors about me, I would say they say I am “confident but humble”.

Who is the best player you have ever played against in college?

  • I have played against a few talented players in my college career, but I know every day and every game I go out and compete with myself because I know I am my biggest critic and I am my biggest competitor. At the end of the day, as long as I know I gave it my all every play, I would be satisfied. But if I have to pick a player from an opposing team, I would have to pick Keshaun Taylor from Mars Hill University.

What would your career be if you couldn’t play football?

  • If I couldn’t play football, owning my own business would be a goal of mine.

Room, desk, and car – which do you clean first?

  • Room.

If there was a disaster and you could either save three strangers or one family member, which would you choose and why?

  • In a disaster, I would save my family member first because my family is more valuable to me.

If you could be any television or movie character, who would you be and why?

  • If I could be any movie character, I would have to go with Denzel Washington from when he played the role on both the “Equalizer” and “Equalizer 2”. Not only is he a complete killing machine and very smart, but he puts his life in danger to save others that he knows is in danger.

Tell me about your biggest adversity in life and how you’ve dealt with or overcome it?

  • My biggest adversity in life again has to be when I made myself ineligible to play football in my freshman year in high school. I dealt with it by separating myself from what I was used to and transferring to a school that was completely out of my comfort zone. But I did it for all the right reasons, I wanted better for myself and I didn’t want to settle for less.

What is your most embarrassing moment?

  • I don’t have a most embarrassing moment.

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

  • The most memorable play of my collegiate career is the Limestone game, my sophomore year, fourth quarter. Limestone was attempting a drive to tie the game and potentially send the game to overtime. The first play, they ran the ball and the runner got to pass our first level of defense in which he made it to the secondary and tried to bounce it outside. Holding my outside containment, I basically took the ball from him and returned it to about the 5-yard line, setting up our offense to score and put the game on ice.

What song best describes your work ethic?

  • Future- Last Breath

What is the most important trait you can have (Physical or Non-Physical) to help you succeed at the next level?

  • The most important trait you can have is confidence. Being confident you can compete and hang with anybody, no matter the backgrounds.

If you could bring one person back from the dead for one day, who would it be and why?

  • My older brother because he was like a father figure to me and my other brothers. When I first started playing football, he would come to my practices and watch. Every time I made a good play, he would come on the field jumping up down and slapping on my helmet saying, “good job boy”. He gave me that motivation and mindset that I was the best player on the field. When my mom couldn’t give, he would always come through for us, which I appreciated. A lot of little things made him who he was, but those little things didn’t go unnoticed.

If you were to open a dance club, what would you name it?

  • Elite Footwork

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL?

  • Devante Adams from the Green Bay Packers.

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

  • Respected of course because at the end of the day I know what I bring to the table and I want others to know that.

What player who had his career derailed by off-field issues do you feel for the most and why?

  • Tyreek Hill because not only was he just starting to become a big name, but his situation happened so long ago and still to this day it’s coming back to harm him. That just goes to show you how important your decisions in life is.

Do you love to win, or hate to lose?

  • Hate to lose.

Who has been the biggest influence on your life and explain why?

  • Definitely my mom. Growing up as a single parent is tough. Especially going through the adversity she went through with losing her son and mother within a two-month span. She never held her head down and gave up on life cause she knew she had four other kids to look after and make sure that they were and are

Damond Talbot

NFL Draft Diamonds was created to assist the underdogs playing the sport. We call them diamonds in the rough. My name is Damond Talbot, I have worked extremely hard to help hundreds of small school players over the past several years, and will continue my mission. We have several contributors on this site, and if they contribute their name and contact will be in the piece above. You can email me at

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