NFL DraftProspect Interviews

2020 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Ja’Vaun Johnson, OT, University of Texas Permian Basin

Ja’Vaun Johnson the huge OT from University of Texas Permian Basin recently sat down with NFL Draft Diamonds owner Damond Talbot.
  • Name: Ja’Vaun Johnson
  • Height: 6’6 
  • Weight: 295lbs
  • Position: OT
  • College: University of Texas Permian Basin
  • Twitter: JJ_Relentless94

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

• My Hometown is Chicago, IL. What I love most about my hometown is my family, the culture of Chicago, and vast variety of great food!

List these three in order of importance and why: Film Study, Strength and Conditioning and Practice?

•  Film Study would be first, because I’d be able to visual see what needs to be done or corrected with myself. Film study allows me to also know how to prepare for my opponent. Lastly Film study is a great opportunity to study the game in its entirety at every positon.

Secondly Practice, Practice is second for me because I’m able to take any correction or adjustments from film study, and apply it to the field. Practice allows for me to be hands on, and to perfect my craft come game day.  

Thirdly Strength and Conditioning would be the next thing important thing. Strength conditioning is third because after intense film study and practice, it’s important to prepare my body physically to do it all over again. 

What do you worry about, and why?

• Nothing, I literally taught myself not to worry, but instead pray. I literally control what I can, and let God handle the rest.(uncontrollable things)

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

• As a kid I failed many times trying to teach my self how to ride bike, but all I can remember is falling and getting back up again, until one time I got back up started riding, and notice that I didn’t fall. i’ve riding and not looking back ever since. I overcame this failure by being relentless and by not being denied. Because every time I fell, it taught me a different lesson. So I just kept making adjustments until I got it right. Never give up!  

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

• My teammates all tell me my best qualities is my leadership abilities, with my actions and vocally.

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

• The best player I’ve ever played against was probably Azur Kamara and John O’Kelly 

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

• If I couldn’t play football I most likely would be a Pastor

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

• I personally clean my room first, my car, then lastly I clean my desk. 

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

• If there was a disaster I would choose to save my one family member, because I’m always loyal and committed to who I call my family! 

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

• If I could be any movie character I would be Denzel Washington because I consider him the goat of actors, his ability to convince you in all of his roles played is impeccable. 

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

• My biggest adversity would be being the first person in my family to graduate, and me deciding to play college football at the age of 21 after not playing much in high school. On top of that it was first introduction to Offensive Line. I never was recruited out of high school because I had no tape. No one pushed me to do it, so I had to be my own motivation. I trained every day until I finally earned a walk on opportunity at a junior college in California called West Hills College, I was determined so I played what position they had available, which ended up being OL. It was my first time playing that position, but with my relentless character I earned a starting position at left tackle, from there I would start getting recruited by ranked JuCo’s that offered scholarships. I ended up committing to AZ Western College where I won a conference championship, and played in a National Championship game against East Mississippi College. After that season I was getting recruited by every level. I ended up denying division 1 offers to commit to UTPB because I believed in coach Carrigan’s vision, and still do.  I over came all this adversity by staying consistent and not quitting when I felt uncomfortable, but instead I embraced the discomfort. That’s when you grow!

What is your most embarrassing moment?

• My most embarrassing moment would be not graduating high school on time.

What was the most memorable play of your collegiate career?

• My most memorable play of my college career would be my last play of my collegiate career. That played was me taking a knee because we had just won the game, and tears of Joy because it was my last college game.

What song best describes your work ethic?

• “HALL OF FAME” by Swoope

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

• My most important trait would be my size, athleticism, and ability to learn on the fly. 

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

• I would bring my granny back, because she was iconic in my life, and she always pushed for the best for me.

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

• If I were to open adance club I would name it Expression’s Dance Studio

Who is the most underrated player in the NFL?  

• Lamar Jackson for sure. 

Would you rather be liked or respected, and why?

• I would rather be respected, because not only does that speak to your character, but it speaks volumes to who you are and what you represent. I won’t people to respect the God in me.

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

• A player who had his career derailed by off-field issues do you feel for the most for is Antonio Brown, because he has seem to have lost his identity as a person. 

Do you love to win, or hate to lose?

• I LOVE TO WIN!!!!!

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

• The person with the biggest influence on my life is my mom, because she’s been there since day, she has shown me what it means to sacrifice, and go after something you really want in life!

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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