Found June 18, 2013 on NFL Draft Zone:

Michael Rios is a player getting extra reps in practice for the Cardinals.  He is gaining extra reps due to the injury bug, that is going around the Cardinals camp. There have been quite a bit of Hispanic football players starting to chase their dreams. Michael Rios aka Mike who is a Cuban American that at wide receiver is trying to become the next Victor Cruz.  This kid is super fast and has great hands. He was an All American at Marist College and is trying hard to show that he belongs.  I believe that Rios could be a guy that shocks a ton of people come preseason, because of his super speed and skills. How many teams were recruiting you coming out of high school and how did you make your decision? 7 Schools were recruiting me out of high school; I made my decision based on the school’s location and academic prestige. I also accounted for the team’s previous season records, their respected division of play and the team’s coaching staff. I wanted to have the opportunity to contribute right away on offense and special teams. Has it always been your dream to be an NFL football player? Being a professional athlete has always been appealing to me, I never thought it was a realistic goal, because I was Hispanic and short, that changed right away once I hit my growth spurt senior year of high school and I got dramatically faster. Once I realized my potential; my focus intensified and my priorities shifted to being the best football player I can be. Who was your favorite NFL team growing up, and did you have a player you rooted for? My favorite team growing up was the Indianapolis colts. I loved watching Peyton Manning run his two minute offense; I loved watching 5’8 Bob Sanders lying the wood on running backs like Jerome Bettis, but my favorite player to root for was Dominic Rhodes. He was an undrafted free agent running back out of Midwestern State. Although he was a backup for most of his career, he always found ways to contribute on offense or in special teams, not to mention his “swag” was off the charts. At your position, how do you break down film, please inform our readers what you look for when breaking down film? I play receiver, so deciphering what kind of defense a team runs has a lot of effect on my routes. I have to be able to read a defense presnap and make an action read right when the play starts. I first identify whether the defense runs a 3-4, 4-3, etc. I then look at their coverage’s and see if they favor a particular coverage whether its cover 3, cover 2, quarters or man.  I then study the safeties to see how much they try to disguise their defense and how often they roll to different coverage’s. I then break down their tendencies on first, second and third down. I then try to study each individual player, especially their dbs and linebackers to see if I can pinpoint any weaknesses  I can take advantage of. What is the best accolade/award you have ever received from playing football? It’s a tie between winning a unanimous vote for 1st team in my conference my senior year and winning special teams player of the week for blocking a kick  that won us the game my freshmen year of college. When did you really feel you had a good chance of making your dream come true? I knew I could do it senior year of high school, first round of the play offs. I was playing Glades Central, which Is a powerhouse football team in Florida, they had several 5 star recruits and had over 15 guys go division 1. Throughout the game I kept catching bombs and they responded by putting their best athlete   “Travis Benjamin”  on me , first play they put him in, I “mossed” him for a 50 yard gain, that was the moment  I knew  I  had good  chance. What is your favorite food?  Steak, rice and beans Do you have any pre game rituals? I watch film, read a list of affirmations, visualize what I want to accomplish in the game,  watch a lot of Dragonballz , eat a lot of pasta and drink a bottle of Pedialite. If you could compare your skills to someone in the NFL, who would it be? I’m a mix between Mike Wallace and Jordy Nelson. Braylon Edwards, but with better Hands. What is the most tragic event in your life that has happened and how did you bounce back?  My friend/football teammate and his entire family, besides his mom, died in a car accident in 9th grade. Back then my perception on life was so skewed, I was a sheltered boy who thought life and everything in it was a “gimme.” I learned that football, friends and family were all privileges that I had been taking for granted and I realized how lucky I was. I bounced back by cherishing al l of life’s gifts and taking all my responsibilities and relationships more seriously, which translated to my success on and off the field. Who has had your back through the good and the bad as you’ve moved on balancing life as a student athlete? My parents have provided so much support in the form of love and financial stability.  My parents didn’t have much growing up in Communist Cuba. My parents have made it their life mission to provide me and my siblings with what their parents couldn’t get them. Whenever I’ve had a problem, they always come through with a solution and give me insight on their perspective. I am truly blessed to have my parents, I have many friends who come from broken homes or their parents can’t provide them with all the luxuries they want, I appreciate them so much, and I am trying to meet them half way right now by making them proud through fulfilling my goals, in which they have been able  to support me with. I wouldn’t be where I’m at today without my parents. Everyone asks this question but I’m curious to know what will you buy first with your first NFL pay check?  I will start investing my money right away into my father’s businesses.


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