As the saying goes, "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans," and there's nothing Swet Tailor loves more than a story about perseverance. Our newest ambassador Brenden Deeg thought he would play football forever. When that dream was dashed, he still found a way to turn what he loved into a different type of career altogether.
Hailing from Canada, Brenden proves the rumor that Canadians are exceptionally wonderful people. Read on as we chat with him about how he started (and stopped) playing football, some of his favorite moments podcasting, and who he predicts we'll see in next year's Superbowl.
Hi Brenden! We're thrilled to chat with you. Tell us a little about where you're from and how you got started.
Sure thing. I was born and raised in Ajex in Ontario, Canada, a small town outside Toronto. I'm fortunate to have amazingly supportive parents who are my best friends.
I played football for York University, but I received a nasty concussion during spring training of my sophomore year. I had to be hospitalized and was a mess for three or four months. I couldn't even attend classes, let alone play football. I did a lot of reflecting and decided I shouldn't return to playing due to that injury. So I dropped out of school, moved back in with my folks, and worked for a few cell phone stores.
Here's the thing; When I left football, I knew I still loved this game. I needed to find a way to stay involved with the sport, and that was by covering it. I wrote for websites like NFL Spin Zone, FanSided, and 4th and Jawn, covering the Philadelphia Eagles. I'm a huge Eagles fan. After that, I got a job at the National Football Post covering NFL betting, and this past July, I accepted a position as the Associate Football News Editor for theScore.
What made you fall in love with football?
I was born into a hockey-loving family and played hockey growing up. My brother plays professional hockey in Germany. But my Dad introduced me to football when I was eight when his favorite team played against the Eagles. Like the bad son I was, I chose the rival team to my Dad to become a fan of. I fell in love with the early 2000's Eagles team.
Football is challenging; it is far more complicated than most people understand. Every play is like a game within itself. I started playing football in high school, and that's when I realized it was the ultimate team game. One of my favorite things is watching humans come together and accomplish a task. To me, that's what humanity is all about. Football is the ultimate example of that in sports.
How did you get started in podcasting?
I started my podcast during the 2019 football season, and the first episode aired on October 17th. I got in at the right time and asked my buddy Eric Warner, a huge Bears fan, to cohost with me. The podcast is called Double Doink, after a game-ending field goal attempt by the Bears against the Eagles in the 2018 NFC Wild Card game.
How much research and prep goes into an episode?
Mainly I research statistics and other little nuggets I can drop during the show, but that only takes about an hour or two. I live and breathe football, so I have already come to the mic with a wealth of knowledge. There have been a few guests outside of football that I've had to research more, like Neema Naz. He's a huge comedian in Canada, and that required me to do more prep beforehand.
The video editing process for social media is the hardest part. I do it myself, and getting those clips condensed enough to keep people's attention spans is super tough.
What are some of your favorite moments from the show?
My first big guest was Alex Singleton, currently a linebacker for the Denver Broncos. I wrote a story on him for the National Football Post and then got to interview him. The most surreal moment was when I interviewed Adam Schefter. He has over 10 million followers on Twitter; he's basically the face of NFL news. I also got to interview Chris Mortensen, who is his right-hand man.
Are your days a little more hectic now that it's draft season?
The NFL draft is the busiest time of year for me. People love draft content, especially because they don't know many of those players yet, and outlets like podcasts are where they get that information.
Being a news editor means you work in shifts since the news doesn't sleep, so I have to record my podcast outside those hours. Scheduling people around that gets tricky.
Who do you look up to in the football and podcasting world?
My current favorite player is Jason Kelce, the center for the Eagles. He's incredible, one of the best centers the game has seen. Of all time? Brian Dawkins. I got to interview him about his book, and it was the craziest 50 minutes of my life, getting to talk to my idol and hero.
What team do you have your eye on for the next Superbowl?
If I had to predict right now, I'd say an Eagles-Chiefs rematch. Not a lot of talent has changed teams; it's been a quiet off-season. They were the two best teams last year, and they haven't lost too much, so I think they'll remain the best two teams this year. That said, things could change during the draft, but I don't really expect it to.
We're dying to know: What Swet gear is your go-to?
I'm a massive fan of the Grey Lightweight Swet Hoodie I'm wearing now; I might wear it too much. The Navy All-In Pants are also insanely comfortable and of incredible quality. I can't wait to try more!