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SI Kids Q&A: Maurice Jones-Drew

Running back Maurice Jones-Drew of the Jacksonville Jaguars is on the cover of the October issue of SI Kids. For the cover story, Jones-Drew took on a member of SI Kids' Gamer Gang in a video game challenge (check out the issue to find out who won). Afterward, the 25-year-old star who won the 2010 Madden Bowl against top NFL gamers caught up with SI Kids reporter Duane Munn for a Q&A.

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What was the first video game you ever played, and do you remember how you fared?
The first game I ever played was Super Mario Brothers on Nintendo. When I got the SEGA I started playing Madden, so I did alright the first time ever playing Madden.

Is there a moment you can remember that stands out as the exact point you became a hard core gamer?
When I was born. I came out of the womb with a controller in my hand! It's just been that way ever since.

How many hours per week do you spend playing video games?
It depends. I have two kids now. It used to be six, seven hours a day. Now it's like more an hour or two a day. So I'd say about five hours a week.

How does this year's version of Madden compare with previous editions?
It's more realistic. Obviously you have your glitch players every now and then. But I think it's a great game. They've changed a lot of things around to make it a level playing field so you can't find many glitches. And it's fun.

How do you satisfy your gaming itch on the road? Do you carry portable systems?
No, I focus on the [real] game, the task at hand. Football is the most important thing when we are in season.

Who's the best gamer on the Jags besides yourself?
There's a couple. [Offensive lineman] Uche Nwaneri and [safety] Gerald Alexander.

What's the secret to being a great gamer?
First, talent. And then hard work. That's what it comes down to. You've got to be talented at it and then work hard. You've got to work at it every day, just like anything else in life.

Who gives you the best challenge among NFL gamers?
The guys on the Jaguars. I won the Madden Bowl, but that was just too easy. The Madden Bowl is when they try to get all the best gamers in the NFL and they put you in the tournament, and I knocked them off one by one. I won the whole thing.

Do you play online with other NFL players?
I play with a couple guys from the Redskins and the Bears: Matt Forte, Chris Horton, Kareem Moore. Those are just off the top of my head. When we play Madden. They know who I am and I know who they are, so they can talk trash. We always play with our teams.