NT Cam Thomas (Kevin C. Cox/Getty)
Few players helped themselves more this offseason than North Carolina's Cam Thomas, who could hear his name called early in the second round. With the payoff for his hard work less than a week away, he takes a break to catch up with Scout.com in the last installment of this interview series.
Cam Thomas is one of the top nose tackle prospects in the '10 NFL Draft. He has a terrific combination of size (6-foot-4, 330 pounds) and strength, allowing him to stuff running lanes and bully his way into the backfield.
Thomas allows us to follow his offseason progress via this series of pre-draft Q&As. In case you missed them, check out Part I and Part II.
Michael Lombardo: How have you been keeping busy in the few weeks since we last spoke?
Cam Thomas: I'm just waiting this process out. It's a long process and I can't let it stress me out. I just know the longer I wait the happier I'm going to be in the long run. Everything's been going good, though. They love me.
ML: What can you tell us about the visits and workouts you've been involved in over the last month or so?
CT: To tell you the truth, the teams [I visited with] asked me not to let that stuff out. Most of the game is like a poker-face game right now, so that's between-us type stuff right now. That's why I haven't been Tweeting about stuff like where I've been going.
ML: How much do you keep tabs on each team's interest in you, if just to figure out where you might be heading?
CT: I don't, really. It'll be a 3-4 or a 4-3. I play both of them and I can play both of them well. Wherever I go, I'm just going to go out there and do my thing.
ML: Do you read the countless mock drafts and see where they project you?
CT: I really don't pay attention to that, to tell you the truth. I'm just waiting for [draft day]. That's how people start stressing, they see something they don't like and they're like, "Dang," and they start worrying themselves. I don't want to put myself through that.
ML: In the new mock draft from our very own Chris Steuber, he has you going to the San Diego Chargers with the No. 40 overall selection. How would you feel if the draft actually plays out like that?
CT: If I go to San Diego, I go to San Diego. It really doesn't matter. I'm just trying to play ball. But if I go to Cali, hey, I wouldn't mind going out there for that Cali love.
ML: Do you have any idea at what point in the draft you might be chosen?
CT: No, I just want to hear [my name] called. I've been watching [the NFL] since I was little, then I saw my homeboys Kentwan [Balmer] and Hakeem [Nicks] get drafted and now that I'm next in line, I'm just waiting for them to call my name out.
ML: What are your plans for draft day?
CT: Nothing, just relaxing with my mom. Every day she calls me asking me, "So, where are you going?" She's so caught up in it, she's telling me stuff that I don't even know. She's always on the computer and I have to tell her to chill out with it, you know, laughing. But I know my mom and my family will be happy, so I will just let it do what it do and just go with it.
ML: As soon as the draft is over, you'll have your first NFL mini camp starting shortly thereafter. How much have you thought about that fact and what are your thoughts about finally competing against NFL players?
CT: Basically, we're all fighting for a job. I have the mindset that I'm trying to fight for the next man's position on the field. It's a job interview and I want to get paid.
ML: Whatever team you join, what will you bring to the lineup?
CT: Like you could see at North Carolina and at the Senior Bowl and the Combine, I'm all about excitement and having fun on the field. We're going to have fun out there on the stage, because once you step onto the field it's like you're on a stage and fans are going to love how we perform.
Also check out our exclusive interview series with Geno Atkins and Charles Scott.
Michael Lombardo is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and a long-time contributor to the Scout.com network. His analysis has been published by the NFL Network, Fox Sports and MySpace Sports. He has followed the Chargers for more than 15 years and covered the team since 2003. You can see more of his updates by following him on twitter.