“I just knew my career would last longer with football,” Malveaux said. “I feel like my height, I couldn’t be a 6-5 forward or small forward, so I definitely moved to football. I thought that could make my career longer. And I’m in the NFL, so I guess it worked out.”
Since leaving basketball behind, Malveaux has tacked on about 60 pound to his current dimensions of 6 feet 6, 270 pounds. While he’s much thicker, Malveaux still has something of a basketball body with his length.
His body type actually is reminiscent of that of former Dolphins great Jason Taylor, who will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this summer.
“A lot of people used to say (I compared to) Michael Bennett,” Malveaux said. “That’s what a lot of scouts told me in the process. Said I remind them of Michael Bennett. But, shoot, going back old school, I would say Jason Taylor. Pretty rangy guy. I was a pretty long guy. He likes certain pass-rush moves, same kind of I do. So we’ll see where that goes.”
Malveaux joined Taylor’s old team when he signed with the Dolphins as a rookie free agent after the 2017 draft.
Malveaux brings leadership qualities to the Dolphins, as evidenced by his being chosen by University of Houston team captain last season, and he says he also brings pass-rushing ability despite modest college stats (four sacks in four seasons).
“I feel like I’m a really good pass rusher,” Malveaux said. “It’s just that scheme that we ran the past couple of years at Houston kind of limited me as far as pass rushing, but the coaches know what I can do. They know I can pass-rush. I got to kind of show that at the NFLPA Bowl a little bit. I feel like I am a pass rusher.
“That’s my goal, just to prove everybody wrong about that.”
Malveaux was a two-year starter at the University of Houston and also got some scholarship offers in basketball.
He said he gradually was able to put on weight, but called it a slow process.
“I had to make sure it was good weight,” Malveaux said. “I didn’t want to get fat with my weight, just making sure it was all lean muscle. I think my body fat percentage went up like 2 percent since I was 205. So it barely went up. At first, I used to eat whatever. They would be just like, eat whatever you can grab because I was so small, but eventually I started eating really good and staying in the weight room, put in extra work, that’s how I got the good weight.”
Now, he’s hoping to put that weight to good use as he embarks on an NFL career he hopes will be a successful one.
Draft weekend didn’t quite go as planned for Malveaux, but he’s not about to let tha stop him from trying to achieve his goals.
“I figured I would (get drafted),” he said. “After Pro Day, I had some good numbers in a few of my things. My draft stock rose. Teams were telling me a lot of different things. I was hoping to get drafted, but like the coaches said when I came here, it doesn’t matter what you come in as, it’s what you do when you get here. I’m just glad that it’s over with, I’m glad I’m in this spot. Seems like a good home. Just ready to get to work.”