With NFL training camps in full swing and the season just around the corner, dozens of players are hitting the field, working hard to prove they’ll make a splash in 2018. Wide receiver Tanner McEvoy is looking to do just that with the Seattle Seahawks.
After dealing with a toe injury last season, McEvoy is fully healed and feeling confident about his chances to be a primary part of the roster. The 6’6”, 230-pound former University of Wisconsin alumnus has a versatile set of skills with his size and speed, having played at quarterback, safety, and wide receiver during his college career. McEvoy is ready to put those skills to use.
Read our interview with McEvoy—he’s sounding off on his favorite places to travel, how he trains for the season, playing Fortnite for charity for the St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, and why he loves playing video games.
What are your expectations for this season?
First and foremost, it’s to make the team again. Nothing is handed to anyone in this league and I expect to have to prove myself again this year. If I do make the team, I think everyone’s goal is to win a Super Bowl but more immediately to solidify a position atop the NFC West. At the Seahawks we’re all about competition, so we go from winning our one-on-one battles in practice, then take it week to week. Coach Carroll reminds us that each week is a Championship Week. If you don’t have that mindset, you don’t belong in the NFL.
What are some of your favorite places you’ve traveled during the offseason?
I spent most of the offseason training, but I did have a few nice weekends in San Diego and back in the New York/New Jersey area. I also went with a few old Wisconsin teammates to Australia. It was incredible. We went out on ATVs, spent time at the beach and explored the local culture. I also went up to Vancouver, Canada, to participate in the 12 North Sports Classic for the second year.
What did you enjoy about being in the Fortnite tournament?
Honestly, I’d been waiting for this. It’s fun to compete in something other than football and with Fortnite being such a craze right now, it was great—especially playing for a charity so close to my heart. I didn’t realize it was a duos tournament until that morning, so I showed up to the Microsoft Store a couple hours early. I surveyed the scene of gamers onsite and spoke to a few of them. One recommended a friend around my age. After a few practice rounds, I knew this was my guy. The rest is history.
What does it mean to you to have won the tournament and a $50,000 donation for St. Jude’s from Microsoft Stores?
I have some bragging rights over some of my NFL peers. You know, I came to win and now I feel like all those years playing video games was put to good use. It was great. It means a lot, especially knowing the charity I was playing for is St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. They put the money to use the right way, directly impacting the lives of children in need. I’ve felt a connection to St. Jude’s for a long time. Growing up, my niece had a cyst on her spine as an infant and needed surgery. St. Jude’s was right there for my family, no questions asked. More recently, about two years ago, my cousin unexpectedly had a brain aneurysm and there they were again.
What do you enjoy most about gaming? Why is it fun for you?
I’ve been told that I have ridiculous video game stamina. I have always been a gamer. It’s been a part of my life since I was a kid. I use it to take my mind off things and decompress. My favorites are Fortnite, NBA 2K, FIFA, NHL, and Call of Duty. I love playing with other athletes and with friends, but this was the first time I’d actually been part of a live stream and played with fans. Based on some of the comments on the live stream comment section, this tournament victory may have helped me convert a few new fans, so I think it would be cool to do a fan gaming event again soon.