The listing contains Hall of Fame gamers like Franco Harris and Drew Pearson.
But for the Carolina Panthers, the NFL legend representing the workforce on Day 2 of the 2021 NFL is former defensive lineman Kemp Rasmussen.
When the information got here out, many youthful Panthers followers, or those that have paid much less consideration to the workforce, questioned if Rasmussen is even a former Panthers participant, although he was a member of the 2003 Super Bowl workforce.
After going undrafted out of Indiana, Rasmussen performed for the Panthers from 2002 to 2005, contributing on particular groups and protection. He performed in 50 regular-season video games and 7 postseason video games. He additionally performed for the Charlotte Cobras, a semi-professional soccer workforce within the space.
Now a firefighter with the Charlotte Fire Department, Rasmussen might be one in every of a wide range of particular selectors for NFL groups throughout Day 2 of the draft. The Observer caught up with him this week previous to his departure to Cleveland, the place this yr’s draft is being held.
The Observer: How did you discover out you’ll be announcing a few of Panthers’ draft picks?
Rasmussen: “I received an email from the NFL, that’s how they contacted me. It was right around April 1, so I thought maybe somebody was just playing an April Fool’s joke on me. But I was super excited. I’ve seen (NFL) legends in the past, announcing picks, and I always thought maybe one day that could be me, type of deal. But to actually get to do it’s pretty cool.”
Which half are you most enthusiastic about? It appears enjoyable to get to know the decide earlier than everybody else.
Rasmussen: “I mean, that’s pretty cool. I haven’t even thought about that, knowing before everybody else does. That is pretty cool. I’m just looking forward to a weekend away with the wife (Heather). We haven’t been able to, I have five kids, so it’s hard to get some time for us to take a trip, so it’ll be nice.”
Have you remained a Panthers fan since retiring?
Rasmussen: “Oh yeah, I’m a huge Panthers fan. I watch every game, keep track of what they’re doing.”
What positions would you prefer to see the workforce tackle?
Rasmussen: “I know some of our positions of need are offensive tackle, safety. Secondary or offensive line.”
What’s probably the most memorable second out of your Panthers profession to you?
Rasmussen: “Getting to play in the Super Bowl is a big deal, but also another game that stands out for me, that same season when we clinched the NFC South against the Arizona Cardinals. I had a really good game, and that was the game that we knew we had clinched and were going to the playoffs, and it was just a big celebration in the locker room and it was a pretty cool deal.”
What stands out to you from Super Bowl XXXVIII?
Rasmussen: “Just getting to play in the game, but the whole week leading up to it was just a huge deal. Everything was so big and so overblown. But once the game started, and the kickoff happens, it was just another football game, really. I mean, it was just you get in the grind and you just do what you’re supposed to do, and it’s just another game.”
What led you to turn into a firefighter after your NFL profession?
Rasmussen: “I went out to Seattle after Carolina, and I got hurt out there, and I had two knee surgeries on the same knee, two years back-to-back. I was trying to rehab and I was trying to stay in shape and get back in the league, and I was working out with a guy who is a Charlotte fireman who was at the gym that I was at. He’s kind of a bigger guy like me who could keep up with me weights-wise, lift weights. I just jumped in and started working out with him and he told me about the job of being a firefighter, and it sounded right up my alley, sounded like something that I’d be interested in. So I put my name in and I got hired that first hiring process, which was pretty cool. It was like two years after I retired.”
What had been your authentic plan after your NFL profession?
Rasmussen: “I got my degree from Indiana in teaching, and that’s what my plan was, was to teach. When this opportunity came about, I really liked the sound of being a firefighter better than being a teacher, even though I think I would have loved being a teacher, too. I think they are both great careers, but I just gravitated towards the firefighter, and it’s been great.”
What out of your soccer profession has helped you as a firefighter?
Rasmussen: “Being physically in shape, just a bigger guy, I’m able to do some of the stuff. On calls and stuff, whenever they need some heavy lifting done or anything like that, I’m the guy that they go to.”
Which fireplace station do you’re employed out of?
Rasmussen: “I’m with the Charlotte Fire Department, Station 40, which is off of Harrisburg Road.”
What do folks not perceive about being a firefighter?
Rasmussen: “I think something that people don’t realize is the amount of training that we do. We have a lot of time, we work 24-hour shifts at the fire station. So there’s a lot of time there, there’s a lot of downtime, but that downtime is not just sitting around, doing nothing. I mean we spend a lot of time training on all the skills that we need, so that when the call does come in, then we’re ready to go.”
All of the NFL former and present gamers announcing picks have been vaccinated for COVID-19. Why was that necessary to you?
Do folks ever acknowledge you on the job?
Rasmussen: “Every once in a while. It’s rare, but you have to be a huge Panthers fan to know who I am. I was never a starter, I was always backup, played special teams, but big Panther fans, like I’m a big fan. I know who the backups are on the Panthers now, so for somebody to know who I was, back when I played, I know that they’re a big Panthers fan.”
Any particular outfit deliberate for the decide?
Rasmussen: “So they make me wear a suit. Being a firefighter, I never wear a suit, but I luckily I had one. I have a suit. I do have some Panther gear that I’m going to wear the rest of the time.”