Welcome to the inaugural edition of Luke’s Mailbag, where I answer 12 of your questions!
Chen asks: Who would you say is the most influential person in your career?
Luke: I would have to say that my brothers are the most influential people in my career. They started to play before I did and they were both very talented football players. Trying to compete with them when I was younger really helped me develop my skills.
Brad asks: I have a son who has played 3 straight Windsor Minor All-Star Games and had an amazing year as a tight end. What tips would you give him to stay on the path to the NFL?
Luke: Congrats on the success! Glad to hear Windsor is producing some good tight ends. I would say, first off, enjoy it. Football offers so many great life lessons, and whatever the ceiling or potential, I encourage kids to enjoy the journey. Keep working hard and try to improve a little each day.
Corey asks: Do you remember what Villanova’s favourite play to open and end every game would be no matter the score?
Luke: We ran 35 Power all the time. My brothers, one played RB and the other played left tackle. I didn’t usually do much on this one haha, but it really worked well for us.
Alisa asks: What is your go-to condiment(s) on your hot dog?
Liz asks: If you had to be stranded on a desert island with only three teammates, who would they be and why?
Luke: Tough question! Off the bat I have to go with Jimmy Graham. I am sure he could channel his inner pilot skills to figure out some way to get us off the island, and being a fellow tight end I think he would have the smarts, toughness and skills to survive. Second, Tanner McEvoy… every stranded situation requires a rookie. Third, have to go with Russell Wilson. You know if a QB goes missing they would send in the Navy, and in the meantime if anyone could end up being prepared to be stranded on an Island, it would be Russ.
Jenna asks: What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
Luke: I like to be active. Since I’ve moved to Seattle, I have actually started to try hiking. There are some amazing trails here!
Tony asks: Luke, our family has been calling you “Double L” for years now. Is there any way to get this nickname to stick?
Luke: I actually have been called that sparingly throughout my college and pro career.
Shawn asks: Who is the toughest defender you’ve ever played against?
Luke: To be honest, going up against the Legion of Boom in practice each week is pretty much as tough as it gets. Many people consider them the best unit in the NFL (myself included) and our defense has been good for a while. I would have to say Kam Chancellor is as tough as it gets.
Mackenzie asks: At what age did you start playing football?
Luke: My first year of organized football was Grade 8, so 13 or 14 years old.
Lukas asks: Why did you decide to take the football route instead of baseball?
Luke: Honestly, I had played football far more seriously and had always loved it. It was my first choice.
Colby asks: What was the hardest part of being a Canadian and getting scouted?
Luke: I would say the toughest part of being Canadian is that most of our programs are smaller on this side of the border. Scouts usually focus on areas where there is a high concentration of prospects, and visit more often. We are a bit off the beaten path but I think we have a good crop of up and coming guys who are starting to change that. With each Canadian that is breaking through, be it at the college level or in the NFL, I think teams will look at Canada a bit more.
Nicki asks: Can you find yourself in this picture?
Luke: Wow, that’s going back… good looking crew! Guess that was before digital and high definition. We may need to save this one for a “Where Are They Now?” feature.
Have a question that you want me to answer in the next segment? Ask it using the hashtag #LukesMailbag on Twitter and I just might respond to you!