ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WKBW) — Draft night in Terrel Bernard's household was filled with anticipation and when the 3rd round got underway and selections were being made, Bernard kept his eyes on the bottom of the screen and the teams who were coming up.
"I told my mom, hopefully I get a call from them [the Bills]," he said. "When the call popped up and I realized I was gonna be a Bill, it was a crazy experience. It's something I'll take [with me] forever."
Bernard is coming off a senior season with Baylor where he earned MVP honors in the team's Sugar Bowl win. His performance on the field all season stood out, racking up 103 total tackles and 7.5 sacks.
"I'm energetic and I give 100% effort," he said. "I feel like that's something I pride myself in and I'm looking forward to bringing that to Buffalo."
As one of the school's top blitzers in program history, Bernard brings more threat to the linebacker position. While his size is considered to be small for a guy at that position, he knows his skill will speak for itself.
"I think you've seen a shift kind of in the last few years of NFL running-chase style, more coverage aspect to combat the passing game," he said. "I can do multiple things in the run game and coverage as well."
Bernard has watched his fair share of NFL players in the past including Bills linebacker Matt Milano. He called him one of his "favorite players" to study.
"The first thing that pops out is his instinct and how active he is on the field," Bernard said. "Being able to learn from his is going to be amazing."
With experience both at middle and outside linebacker, Bernard is willing to line up wherever the team needs him in order to compete for a roster spot. But it's his dedication off the field that makes him the hardworking athlete he is today.
Bernard graduated from Baylor with a degree in health and is currently pursuing his master's degree in sports management.
"My mom instilled in me at a young age just how important academics were. That played a big part in going to Baylor and really focusing and graduating," he said. "That dedication and spending the time to be successful in that, that can translate over to football as well and produce on the field."