Donte Deayon on competing for playing time in the NFL
Anyone who watched Donte Deayon play cornerback for the Boise State football team expected him to come down with a leaping interception Sunday night against the Dallas Cowboys.
So did Deayon.
Deayon dropped into Dak Prescott’s throwing lane in the end zone and broke up a pass for the New York Giants. The Cowboys scored a touchdown two plays later, on their way to a 20-13 win.
Deayon, who was in zone coverage as the slot cornerback, anticipated the throw to wide receiver Cole Beasley.
“I went up for it but I only got one (hand) on it,” Deayon said. “I was hoping I got two because me, I always want to come down with a pick. I don’t want no breakups.”
Deayon made some spectacular catches among his 17 career interceptions at Boise State from 2012 to 2015 — the fifth-most picks in school history. That playmaking ability has shown up in the preseason, too, and has helped him stay in the NFL.
Sunday’s game marked Deayon’s fifth appearance in three years with the Giants. That’s the closest he’s come to an interception, but he had two in the last preseason game this year.
“I pride myself on that, being a guy to go and get the rock,” Deayon said. “That’s why I’m disappointed I didn’t come down with the interception on that — corner of the end zone, Sunday night, Dak Prescott. I need those. That’s just dropping money right there.”
Deayon played against the Cowboys because of a groin injury to starting cornerback Eli Apple during the game. Deayon doesn’t play special teams, so he entered the game in the second half about 2 hours after warmups. He stretched on the sideline to get ready.
He spent 2016 and part of 2017 on the practice squad and played in four games last season. He has finished each of his first two pro seasons on injured reserve and missed time during this preseason with a hamstring injury.
“That’s all part of the journey,” he said. “... I know there’s ups and downs and I know for a fact I’ll get a shot, and when I get a shot, I’ve got to be ready. That’s been the biggest thing — being ready ... and not only just going out there and playing, but going out there and making a difference.”