Athlete of the Week: Fort D grad Robert Quinn

SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCIV) -- Fort Dorchester graduate Robert Quinn is an elite NFL player. He's one of the top defensive ends in the NFL.

But catching up with the Ladson native, two different words come to mind: humble and hungry. But he's definitely the ABC Sports 4 Athlete of the Week.

Robert Quinn can see himself on every summer trip back to the Lowcountry.

"There's some that may want to do this later down the line. I show it's possible. It's good to give to the community to keep kids' dreams going. If you work hard and keep kids dreams alive," he said.

But every year the kids get bigger, stronger, faster and better. So does Quinn. He went from five NFL sacks his rookie year to 10 his second to a mind-boggling 19 this year. He was a one-man wrecking machine.

"As the season went on, I was seeing how I was having productive year, and I didn't want to let it overwhelm me. I took it day by day, and when the dust cleared, I reflected and looked back and saw what I accomplished," he said.

It may sound cliche, but it's true. Talking to Quinn now is almost no different than talking to the quiet kid coming off the field at Fort Dorchester.

His stats and his physique say he's a superstar, but his attitude and his demeanor reflect something more.

"I always give thanks to the man upstairs. Having a year like that is definitely special, thanks to man upstairs. Having a season like that you don't do yourself, give thanks to teammates who helped me have successful year. Did I expect it? I always raise my bar high, extreme. If I fall short it's successful," Quinn said.

Even though his season ended up short of an ultimate goal, a goal his high school teammate Byron Maxwell got to experience, Quinn's postseason was pretty good, too.

"Pro Bowl was nice honor. Captain, first Pro Bowl, that was definitely a great honor. It's tough to do the way they have it formatted, taking the best six players. It was a great honor to do things like that," he said. "It's not individual. I keep giving thanks to teammates that help me succeed. I had a fun year and hopefully as a team we get a few more wins next year and add a few sacks on my total, as long as we're having fun that's all that matters."

There's one final hurrah at home. He's ready, anxious, and excited to get back to his home away from home, back to where he's a little less laid back.

"I take the approach that when we're at work or at facility, let's put in our work. When I'm away I get away so it doesn't beat down on me as year goes on. That way it doesn't drain me out over six or seven months we're playing. We put in work, my team and I. It sounds basic, go to work, practice hard, come game day you sell yourself out there and have a great day," Quinn said.

For this Athlete of the Week, with the numbers he's putting up and the quarterbacks he's putting down, there's no telling what's next.

Quinn and the Rams open with the Vikings on Sept. 7.

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