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DT Rickey Hatley brings 'relentless' style to Iron's defensive line

January 27, 2019 - Alliance of American Football (AAF) - Birmingham Iron News Release

SAN ANTONIO, Texas - If you've never seen Rickey Hatley play, the Iron defensive lineman wants you to know one thing about him - he'll always be in the backfield.

Hatley was a disruptive force during his playing days at Missouri, and he hopes to bring that same level of play to the Birmingham Iron's defensive line.

As a senior at Missouri in 2016, Hatley started all 12 games, recording 28 tackles (18 solo) with a sack and two quarterback hurries. He earned the team's J. Ed 'Brick' Travis Interior Lineman of the Year Award that season.

Hatley, an Atlanta, Texas native, spent time in the NFL with the Houston Texans, Kansas City Chiefs and the Buffalo Bills.

Below is the transcript of Hatley's interview with Iron team reporter Marq Burnett following Day 21 of training camp.

On how has camp been going...

Hatley: "Everything has been good. Just getting back into the groove since we got here on Jan. 4. From the conditioning part to the playbook to the film study, everyone had to get back in the groove because it's been a while since some of us have been on the field. I've been getting my feet wet, knocking the rust off and having fun every day."

On what he's seen from the defensive line...

Hatley: "From mini-camp to now, everybody is getting in the playbook more, learning each other's moves and studying each other more. It's a pretty good group. You have a lot of experience in the room. From (Iron DT) Lawrence (Okoye) who had like five seasons in the NFL to myself who had a couple of seasons, having that experience to give to the young guys is good."

On what he thinks the strength of the defensive line will be...

Hatley: "The interior, and our ability to study everything."

On how the Iron defensive has progressed to this point...

Hatley: "Defense is coming along pretty good. Meeting with (Iron defensive coordinator) Coach Rick (Minter) and (Iron head coach) Coach (Tim) Lewis, those are some great minds in the film room. They have a lot of experience as well. Just to see the playbook they have and we learn from it. If we eliminate mistakes, we can be pretty good."

On how he would describe his playing style...

Hatley: "Relentless, always after the ball and always stay in the backfield."

On how good he thinks this defense can be...

Hatley: "To be honest, there is no limit. As high as we can go, forreal."

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