12 Questions: Rookie Trai Turner

The Panthers offensive tackle will travel to play his hometown Saints for the first time this weekend.

1. How many tickets do you have to buy for family and friends this week?

“20."

2. Where did you grow up in New Orleans?

“Downtown. An area called the 7th Ward."

3. Were you there during Hurricane Katrina?

“I wasn’t there for Katrina. I left maybe 12 hours before. Just a last minute thing. In New Orleans, when a hurricane comes, usually you just ride it out. I was 11 at the time, and when it happened, I didn’t think too much of it. Had a two-day vacation, off from school, no complaints. Left, didn’t understand the magnitude of what happened until maybe a week or so after. I’m like, ‘Mom, why can’t we go home?’ And mom was like, ‘I don’t know if we have a home.’"

4. Did you?

“Yeah. It wasn’t in the best of shape at all. Definitely had some water damage, wind damage. We were fortunate enough not to be there."

5. People from New Orleans are usually extremely proud of being from New Orleans, especially after Katrina. Are you the same way?

“Definitely. I love my city. I love where I’m from, and I appreciate being from there. It taught me a lot of life lessons. I couldn’t be more happy about where I grew up and how I grew up."

6. What’s your favorite dish from back home?

“Shrimp pasta, crawfish pasta, any kind of pasta."

7. Spicy?

“I'm not too big on the spicy stuff. I can take some kick to it, but I’m not too big on the spice."

8. Best three restaurants in New Orleans?

"Definitely a place called Katie’s. New Orleans Food and Spirits. Drago’s."

9. Have you played in the Superdome before?

“Twice. Once when I was 6. It was a rec ball thing. We had a 6-year-old championship. And 2011 for the National Title game [with LSU]."

10. What was it like playing in the Superdome as a 6-year-old?

“I just remember it being huge. I remember the AstroTurf. The old Saints field. It was a huge place to me, especially being 6, playing in a stadium like that, used to playing on a rec ball ground."

11. Were you a Saints fan growing up?

“No. I’m not a Saints fans. I’m not not a Saints fan. But I’m not a Saints fan. I don’t root for the Saints. If they win, cool. If they lose, cool."

12. How would you describe Saints fans?

"Rowdy. Passionate. Crazy. Everything that signifies New Orleans in one place on Sunday or Monday or even a Thursday. So pretty chaotic."

Categories: Black and Blue Review 2, Panthers