K'Von Wallace is a rookie, but the fourth-round pick out of Clemson sounds like he's been in the NFL for years.
During a video conference call on Wednesday, the safety said he's focused on developing a "consistent routine" that includes reserving extra time for studying the playbook, getting the proper amount of sleep and hydration, as well as communicating to family and friends when it's OK to check in to not disrupt the preparation for his rookie season.
If you were to survey NFL veterans, many would say those are the habits that they wished they developed earlier in their careers.
Wallace just turned 23 years old last weekend, but he is well aware of another NFL cliché – the best ability is dependability. So when it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic that abruptly changed how we all live our lives, Wallace is taking precautions "very seriously" from proper hygiene to creating a safe environment, whether it's inside the NovaCare Complex or in his hotel room.
"I got a family back home that is counting on me to do my job, so being sick will limit that, and the number one thing that you want to be in the league is available," Wallace said. "I'm trying to make sure I'm available at all times and I'm doing everything I can to limit those opportunities that will keep me away from the NFL."
A two-time National Champion and team captain at Clemson, Wallace looks to bring that winning mentality to the Eagles. While the pandemic forced all pre-Training Camp activities to be virtual, Wallace said that he and his fellow teammates got together for video calls on their own to go over the playbook and the nuances of playing defensive back – how to backpedal better, how to high-point the ball.
Praised for his physicality and willingness to tackle, Wallace said that he's just trying to learn the overall defensive scheme – run fits, everyone's responsibilities – rather than a specific position.
Wallace has shown discipline in limiting distractions, but he's got plenty of personality. He engages with fans on social media as a way of saying thank you to those who helped him get from Richmond, Virginia to the NFL.
"The community is so connected with social media. That's the best way I can communicate with them and be connected with my hometown because my hometown really made me who I was, and they helped me and supported me and motivated me every single day," Wallace said.
"There's a lot of athletes there that get overlooked (in Richmond). I wasn't one of those athletes that got overlooked. I actually got my opportunity. I got my little shine and I'm thankful for them for always believing in me because, without them, I wouldn't even be here, so it's very important that I apply myself to the (social) media, so they know that I really care about them and to know that without them I would be nothing and know that they motivate me. I know there is going to be a kid looking up to me, to be the next K'Von Wallace, and I always tell them, 'Don't be the next K'Von Wallace, be themselves.'"