It's an exciting time for the Redskins – they're heading to the playoffs and playing a regular season game without implications (for a good reason). For that matter, it's an exciting time to be a Redskins fan, too.
With that attention comes more exposure, and this week linebacker Will Compton got a taste of what it feels like to be relevant in the eyes of the team's most famous fans – he got (after asking) a Twitter follow from NBA superstar Kevin Durant.
The Twitter exchange made news and involved defensive back DeAngelo Hall, Compton's gateway to asking Durant if he had ever heard of him and if he'd be worth a follow. Sure, the conversation played into Compton's sense of humor, but it also goes a little deeper, a validation of Compton's journey from undrafted free agent to starting middle linebacker in the NFL.
"You've got to enjoy the moment," Compton said. "If you don't enjoy the moment, then you're just going through the motions. We're playing a kids game and I'm in the locker room with Pot Roast [Terrance Knighton], DeSean Jackson, DeAngelo Hall, Trent Williams, [Robert Griffin III], Kirk Cousins, I'm in a locker room full of athletes, and there's not a day that goes by I don't feel blessed about that. Shoot, somebody like Kevin Durant's a fan of the Redskins, you're damn right I'm going to try to try to get his attention in some way."
Sometimes it takes guts to interject on Twitter and interrupt a conversation, in this case between Durant and Hall, but Compton saw his opportunity, and, being the businessman he is, took it.
"That's kind of my personality and my humor," Compton said. "I love messing with D-Hall, because he's one of the older guys on the team. I saw him talking with KD, so I'm like this is a chance right here."
While some athletes might try to downplay the interaction, Compton didn't take it for granted.
"What, was I supposed to act like just some cool NFL guy? 'Oh yeah, what's up KD? Yeah it's good seeing you I respect your game, too.' I watch him every year and I know my young self would be disappointed if I acted that way. So, you know I'm gonna enjoy the moment and have fun with it. I did. I thought it was awesome.
Compton isn't star-struck, but he has a deeply ingrained appreciation of his situation, which allows him, for instance, to text back and forth with teammates such as Hall. He recalled receiving a video message from the veteran defensive back the other day on his phone and remembered thinking how incredible it is to have his number at the ready – and especially that Hall has his, too.
"I'm just having fun and enjoying it and soaking in all these moments." Compton said. "You only go through this one time in your life, these things won't happen again. I'm gonna make sure I enjoy it, live in the moment and have fun with my teammates and enjoy it while I can."