An interview with ECU offensive lineman D’Ante Smith

February 15th, 2021 | Written by Rob Staton

ECU’s D’Ante Smith had an outstanding Senior Bowl and with his incredible measurements, he might be working his way into the second round.

Check out my interview with him below. If you’ve been able to share these interviews in the past, please do again. And don’t forget to like the video on YouTube and subscribe to the channel.

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163 Responses to “An interview with ECU offensive lineman D’Ante Smith”

  1. 🇨🇦 native & #Minnesota CB Benjamin St. Juste mentioned the #Seahawks, #49ers & #Steelers as teams that he felt he had a great connection with at the @seniorbowl.

    https://twitter.com/JustinM_NFL/status/1361407232122978308?s=19

  2. Bankhawk says:

    Another fantastic interview, Rob. What a beast on the field and an incredibly likeable kid, to boot!
    Heard some buzz about the Hawks sniffing around Zach Ertz and thinking ‘WTF?’. Linking us to yet another superstar tight end to go underutilized? Is that really what they should be prioritizing at this point? Just worries me as I’d prefer to see them adhere to plans more similar to those you laid out in the ‘What I’d do’ piece. Sigh. 🤷‍♂️

    • Rob Staton says:

      Thanks Bankhawk.

      I suspect the Ertz call was a touching base situation more than anything else. If they prioritise that type of move then they’ll have learnt nothing from a year ago. I’m going to assume they learnt something from the mess of 12 months ago.

    • dcd2 says:

      $12M to try and turn an aging, injured TE into a 6th blocker sounds very ‘Seahawky’ to me.

  3. Rob Staton says:

    Josina’s been on the phone…

    https://twitter.com/JosinaAnderson/status/1361412365044998148

    Assuming this is a Seahawks source rather than one of Josina’s random moments… then the ball is firmly back in the Wilson court. What’s his next move?

    • Zxvo3 says:

      I don’t think there’s anything left for him to say, only for him to request a trade. If a trade request is going to happen I predict it’ll be this week.

      • Rob Staton says:

        I’m fascinated to see what Wilson’s next move is.

        Because I’m going to assume, certainly after watching Cowherd’s piece earlier, that the issues between Wilson & Carroll haven’t been solved.

        • Pran says:

          We were all wondering what happened mid season, why offense is not able to adjust, why Russ was so bad, not the same always fighting Russ which we had accustomed to over the years.

          If 2nd Half is any indication, this is what we will continue to see till Russ is traded or Pete can do something to have Russ buy in to his philosophy again.

          Curtains to an Era!

          • cha says:

            The visual of Pete yanking control of the offense back, immediately after admitting in the Buffalo game they gameplanned their defense for the Bills to run a lot and were surprised they lit them up so bad in the air, is so, so ugly.

            • Roy Batty says:

              Those statements were so absurdly ridiculous that I distinctly remember my brother texting me and saying, “You have the worst passing defense in history and you think the other team hasn’t noticed?”

              BTW, my brother WAS a season ticket holder. He told the Hawks to buzz off after they kept reassuring him his “place in line for 2021 is still good.”

    • Sea Mode says:

      $5 says her “inside source” is Greg Bell’s twitter…

  4. cha says:

    Thanks again Rob.

    I know nothing about physical training for pro athletes, but I liked him mentioning yoga 2 or 3 times in the interview.

    I think flexibility is easily one of the most underrated aspects of physical conditioning. I’d imagine with lineman having to torque their bodies perhaps on almost every play, being flexible is a necessity and probably one of the keys to career longevity.

    • Rob Staton says:

      It’s also the kind of thing you have to commit to, which I also think is a positive

    • Sea Mode says:

      I was surprised to hear Meinerz emphasize ankle flexibility for OL. Hadn’t really thought about that much, but it makes a ton of sense.

    • Roy Batty says:

      Yoga is becoming the norm, not the exception, with the newer wave of athletes.

      • Hawksorhiking? says:

        I had a friend who taught pilates to Mack Strong when he played. As nice and tough a guy as ever played for the Seahawks.

        Another great interview. Could he last to Seattle’s second round pick? I’m guessing no.

  5. Wilson is type of man that need and love to be liked by others. He is loved in Seattle and will not do anything to change that imo. He wont play Watson game. We could see trade this off season only if all of this happen

    1. There is team Wilson is willing to play
    2. That team has enough picks and players to offer to make John happy
    3. John thinks he can find new QB with that picks

    And looks like trade would need to happen in next 15days (because od dead money)…

    So guess, it will all move to next off season, and depending on results in 2021, as soon as season ends we will know will RW be Seahawk in 2022..

  6. Jordan says:

    I think Russ works so hard to be liked that it comes across as awkward and inauthentic.

    I’m not sure that if he ended up elsewhere fans would still pull for him from afar to the same extent as guys like Marshawn and Bruce (or even a non-football example like Gary Payton). Guys who seemed 100% authentic with more relatable personalities.

  7. Sea Mode says:

    Shout-out to any SDB gang down in Texas. Y’all will figure out how the white powdery stuff works soon enough! 😉

    https://mobile.twitter.com/madeline_rapp/status/1361390862987649026

    (And anyone affected by the power outage in the Houston area, hope it gets sorted in a timely fashion)

    • vbullen65 says:

      Thanks, we lost the power at 5:30 AM and just got it back. We are breaking all kinds of records here for cold temperatures!

  8. Sea Mode says:

    RIP Vincent Jackson.

  9. Trevor says:

    Really enjoy these prospect interviews Rob.

    Smith seems like an ideal fit for the Hawks as a replacement for Brown in a year or two. If the Hawks gradually go to a more athletic OL like the Rams then even more so.

    Given how little draft capital we have I am not sure it will be possible but if they can somehow pickup an couple of extra picks on Day #2 I would absolutely love to see them take both Smith and Quinn Meinerz. Add them with Damien Lewis and you have a foundation to build the OL around for years to come.

  10. DC says:

    Any chance that Pete ‘Falls on the Sword’ & retires for the sake of the Franchise and the Fans?

    1 out of 100? Or more like 1 out of 1,000,000?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMRrNY0pxfM

  11. Roy Batty says:

    I shouldn’t be, but I am amazed at how at ease these prospects are. I’m guessing its much more relaxing than being stuffed into a room in Indy to do your umpteenth interview.

  12. RWIII says:

    In regards to Russell Wilson. I am intrigued with Miami. Miami has a legit defense. So that might interested Russell Wilson. But Miami has the number 3 overall pick in this coming draft. Miami has the draft capital that could make for a legitimate offer for Russell Wilson. Miami could also throw in Tua Tagovailoa in a trade.

    I don’t know how good Tagovailoa really is. In my opinion Tag might be overrated.

    Mike Floria thinks Russell Wilson is interested in going to the Dallas Cowboys. Don’t see that happening. What could the Cowboys offer in a trade? BTW: Dak Prescott is looking for a deal that would surpass Russell Wilson’s contract.

    The Saints according to John Clayton are in salary cap hell. Don’t see the Saints/Cowboys making an offer that would please John Schneider. Plus Saints/Cowboys are in the same conference(N.F.C.)

    If there was a team in the NFC that might interest Russell Wilson and the Seahawks would be the Washington Football team. Washington could make a legit offer. Washington would have to include Chase Young and at least two first round picks. And more. One reason Washington makes sense for Wilson is because he is from Richmond Virginia

  13. Sea Mode says:

    Green Bay should go for J.J. Watt, talks Russell Wilson & Seattle Seahawks — Colin | NFL | THE HERD

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=qKAXQ5BCvrQ.

    • Rob Staton says:

      A lot of people aren’t going to listen to those words because there’s a section of the fan base that refuses to acknowledge how serious this is, or that Cowherd and Wilson are tight.

      But that right there — is a video explaining exactly how Wilson feels. Explaining exactly what the issue is. Likely from the horses mouth.

  14. charlietheunicorn says:

    In other news, Goff is reportedly on the block being shopped yet again…. for anything.

  15. cha says:

    Anyone listen to Chuck Armstrong on KJR just now?

    I didn’t, but the tweets coming out of it are about, the video screen at Lumen Field, why the Seahawks haven’t done a throwback, and they’re thinking about a new Ring of Honor inductee for 2021.

    So I assume nothing about RW. Did Softy even ask?

  16. neil says:

    Paying Eartz 7 to 10 mil seems totally illogical given all the Hawks have to accomplish this year. Hollister is a free agent and I don’t think he was all that bad. He is not going to be offered that kind of money, maybe the Hawks should match what he is offered and move on.

    • BobbyK says:

      No to giving mediocre players millions. I’m fine with mediocre on rookie contacts, but am sick of the wasted millions to guys like Mayowa, Irvin, Dunbar, Finney, Ogbuehi, Iupati, Olsen, Hyde; bums.

    • Ashish says:

      I don’t think we need super star TE. We haven’t utilized them in past and have been more successful with unknown/upcoming players. Hollister 3 millions is also sounds too much based on how much he was part of the offense.

  17. BobbyK says:

    It’s really amazing what a joke this franchise has become in such a short time. You’d think that a head coach and general manager fresh off long-term extensions would be presiding over a period of optimism and hope (or why give those contracts out in the first place). Instead, they’re not in a great cap situation, they’ve depleted future drafts, aside from DK they haven’t acquired much good young talent, and now the franchise QB is turning on them – for good reason.

    • John_s says:

      Yet the joke of a franchise went 12-4 and won the division, currently are scheduled to have 7 draft picks (2022) and $141 million in cap room (which obviously will go down) in 2022.

      Terrible how they’ve ruined this franchise

      • Rob Staton says:

        In fairness though, don’t they have about 19 contracted players for 2022? Not to mention it’s a lot less than $140m

        And unless they’re willing to do a plan like the one I proposed, they’re going to be using the credit card and that will soon disappear.

        I don’t think people realise how much of a state this franchise is in. Plundered resources, a QB who is unhappy, a limited roster with a lot of holes, holding pattern at ownership that is more of an issue than I think people are comfortable discussing.

        You can mention 12-4 but I’m afraid without RW, that record could easily be reversed. The Seahawks do not have a particularly good roster. And the player most responsible for their consistent run of winning seasons is making it clear the franchise either gets its arse in gear or he wants out.

        It’s maybe not what people want to hear but they need to hear it.

        • Big Mike says:

          Some of us realize it. Others prefer the ostrich approach it would seem.

          • Rob Staton says:

            A large section of the fan base are doing a great impression of this guy…

            Comical Ali

            • cha says:

              Everything’s under control. Situation normal.

              We had a slight weapons malfunction, but uh… everything’s perfectly all right now. We’re fine. We’re all fine here now, thank you. How are you?

              • John_s says:

                I mean I’m not going to go as far as calling them a joke of a franchise.

                Do they have some self inflicted issues absolutely they do but am I ready to go jump off a bridge because of it? No.

                • Rob Staton says:

                  I don’t think they’re a joke of a franchise. I think that’s the wrong language to use to describe the state of the Seahawks.

                  I think a fair way to describe this franchise is one with a LOT of issues that are being covered up with concealer. Some of the issues, such as ownership and the developing saga with Wilson, are far more serious than I think people realise.

                  And then there are smaller yet still serious issues with regards to resource, the roster, the coach, the staff and more.

                  • John_s says:

                    “I think a fair way to describe this franchise is one with a LOT of issues that are being covered up with concealer. Some of the issues, such as ownership and the developing saga with Wilson, are far more serious than I think people realise.”

                    I agree with you Rob on this that there are issues with the franchise and how they’ve operated.

                    As with the Russ thing, I see it’s an issue on both sides and personally feel like it’s time to trade him and maximize his value.

    • Simo says:

      This team clearly has some issues and things to work through this offseason! The cap situation isn’t great (also not nearly as bad as a number of other teams). The RW drama is disconcerting, and something they need to solve sooner than later.

      Sure, there’s been to many draft misses but I don’t think that DK is the only good, young talent they have acquired recently. Here’s a few others to consider:
      — I think Damien Lewis is going to be a fixture at guard for the next 5-10 years
      — Jordyn Brooks looks like he will be a good LB for a number of years, and may even need to fill BWagz shoes this year if a trade goes down
      — We also shouldn’t dismiss guys like Alton Robinson, Marquise Blair, Colbey Parkinson, or even Darrell Taylor just yet. They were all either injured or rookies learning about life in the NFL.

      Otherwise, I agree there’s way to much drama and uncertainty!

  18. ElroyNumbers says:

    Rob – Miami seems like logical trade partner.
    You seem to not be a Tua fan at all. He seems to have the right attitude. Also he is lefty which I am partial too as a south paw. Is it film from nfl or Bama that has you thinking he isn’t the guy?

  19. DougM says:

    Another really good interview. You’re a natural at it. Adding the film clips is a great idea.
    I would also like to say that I think your analysis is right on. I feel that when I read your articles I am coming away with an understanding of what’s going on. Thank you.

  20. Do you think there is chance, and how would you react if 2nd round pick is QB (Mond)?

  21. Rob Staton says:

    I accidentally watched a video about RW & Ciara’s GQ shoot.

    Bloody hell.

    If I was on the team, I would be taking the piss big time.

    • Trevor says:

      His off field stuff has always been corny and cringe worthy but he is taking it to a whole other level lately. There is no way in hell a bunch of Alpha Males in a locker room look at him and say man that guy is a leader of men. They may respect his talent and even his durability / toughness on the field but the corniness and selfish insecurity is just too much. I truly hope the Hawks take advantage of this opportunity and get max value for him then move on. Have not won anything with him as the leader and never will IMO. The team has gone from being the bully to soft as hell.

      • Rob Staton says:

        The line about his greatest fear being losing his wife…

        Goodness me.

        That’s just not a healthy way to live.

        • Big Mike says:

          Nope. Your wife/partner should be an enhancement for your life, not your reason for living.

          • Rob Staton says:

            It’s not so much that there’s anything wrong with your wife being your reason for living.

            It’s more a case that your greatest ‘fear’ should never be your wife leaving you. That’s not healthy.

            • Sea Mode says:

              I haven’t listened to it (nor do I intend to), but I imagine that he intended it to sound romantic or something but it just ended up awkward and cringy.

        • Trevor says:

          Goes a long way in explaining the drama around Golden Tate and his first wife. I think that type of personality is why the LOB and guys like Doug Baldwin always seemed to have such animosity towards him despite respecting his talent.

      • Denver Hawker says:

        Are there any Alphas left?

        I think a big part of rebooting the roster was as much about removing those types of players and filling them with Betas so Russ can ‘lead’ without the hardcore accountability and locker room friction.

        • cha says:

          This gets back to the identity question.

          Seriously, when was the last time PC (or JS if you can find him) talked about being a bully? Or controlling the LOS? Or being aggressive?

          He uses phrases like ‘jacked up’ and ‘pumped’ a lot but that’s more about attitude.

          PC was asked about how the Seahawks got handled against the Rams and pointed to Aaron Donald. And rightly so. But how do you go into the season with Pocic and Iupati and think ‘yeah sure we’re fine at that spot’ ?

          • Rob Staton says:

            PC was asked about how the Seahawks got handled against the Rams and pointed to Aaron Donald. And rightly so. But how do you go into the season with Pocic and Iupati and think ‘yeah sure we’re fine at that spot’ ?

            Another one to throw on the pile of, ‘what’s the thought process here??’

  22. Switch says:

    I was thinking about the Russ trade talks and if we don’t end up trading him this year because of the cap hit or whatever else then I would assume he still only plays one more year for us. Are there any 2nd round Qb’s coming out with potential? We may end up drafting Russ’ replacement this year and letting him be groomed for 2022.

    Btw, I really like this long armed tackle. He has a really solid build and moves well.

  23. Sea Mode says:

    Wow. Well, ok…

    J.J. Watt is seriously considering the Browns as one of his options because they have what he wants, sources say

    https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2021/02/16/report-j-j-watt-seriously-considering-browns/

    • Rob Staton says:

      It’s telling that the Seahawks still desperately need talent and quality on their DL yet they’re seemingly not even in the running here, because their cap situation and resources situation is a mess.

    • cha says:

      Teams with any salary cap room right now have an even bigger advantage than normal. They can attract these types of players.

      The reason being this odd cap year is tying everyone in knots and it is currently impossible to forecast ticket and concession revenue for a season 7 months away.

      The NFL is apparently trying to ink its MNF deal as soon as possible to get a clearer picture on TV revenue for the salary cap and see how much they can manage the cap not bottoming out and wrecking the veteran FA market.

      It’s possible the league won’t know what the 2021 cap number is until just before the league year begins.

  24. Rob Staton says:

    Kawann Short cut by the Panthers

    Former blog favourite back in 2013… http://seahawksdraftblog.com/kawann-short-is-more-than-good-enough-for-seattle

    Wouldn’t expect him to land in Seattle though

  25. Big Mike says:

    Cowherd with another questioning segment about Pete and his level of power and his level of drafting, type of offense, Adams trade, defensive performance etc. Russ definitely feeding him his point of view would seem. Someone can probably find it on YouTube and get it posted here within the hour I would think.

    • ABCinco says:

      They were discussing it on 710 ESPN this morning too. Danny O’Neill saying that ownership not holding Carroll accountable is false.

    • Rob Staton says:

      If you want to know what Russ is thinking, Cowherd is the one to listen to.

      Whether you like Colin or not — that’s the truth.

    • TomLPDX says:

      It was nice to hear someone finally calling Pete out directly. Cowherd is right on that point…nobody is questioning Pete’s ability to run this organization. None of our local press people will do it, that would be blasphemy! Let’s hope more national people start openly discussing Pete and what he is doing here.

      • Rob Staton says:

        What’s worse for me is — I can semi-understand a local journalist thinking… ‘I’m not going to go after Pete Carroll’. Not in Seattle. In Philly and New York, that’s what’s expected. In Seattle you’ll likely just lose yourself a job. The fans will send you abuse rather than celebrate your brutal honesty.

        That’s not to excuse those reporters from asking tough questions. There’s only really one reporter willing to do that on the Seattle beat. And their should be a willingness to challenge fairly — especially at the moment.

        What I don’t understand is the way some reporters actively go out of their way to be condescending and militant towards fans who might just think that everything isn’t exactly that peachy.

        • cha says:

          Well said.

          I can totally understand a spirited back and forth.

          What I don’t get is the mocking/shutdown tone toward those who think differently. Particularly when there is definitely merit to the argument.

          Going out of your way to use your platform to intentionally pick fights with people isn’t a great use of resources.

    • Rob Staton says:

      So the plan according to this article is…

      — Start Haynes at left guard and re-sign Pocic

      — Re-sign Carlos Hyde and hope for the best with Rashaad Penny

      — Re-sign Phillip Dorsett

      — Re-sign Quinton Dunbar

      If this ended up being Seattle’s off-season, I wonder if Russell Wilson would send his trade request via typed letter, email or text?

    • cha says:

      Seattle’s tight end usage (or lack thereof) in 2020 was an issue that flew largely under the radar.

      Not if you’re part of the SDB community. We were barking about it all season.

    • Big Mike says:

      “What they might do (to address the o-line)…..resign Ethan Pocic and hope for additional development from Phil Haynes

      “What they might do (at RB)….resign Hyde and hope for a breakout year from Penny and add to the room with a late round or UDFA.

      3rd WR….resign Philip Dorsett

      CB…..resign Dunbar

      Brilliant indeed 😞 and if they stay at 3 or 4 draft choices, these “might” situations may well be their only route to filling the roster. But hey, 52nd ranked safety babeeee.

    • Henry Taylor says:

      I do wonder what the point of writing an article like this if you’re going to be that bland and unambitious.

      Like even if that’s what you think will happen, it’s offseason fantasy roster construction, your supposed to be generating interesting conversation. I don’t need to waste my time reading about how the Seahawks should make no effort to significantly improve their roster.

  26. JLemere says:

    So i’ve been thinking about this for a quite while now. What does PC want? I hope PC realizes that this will be his last contract with Seattle, because has soon as the franchise has a new owner, there is a very good chance the new owner will want to go in a new direction. So PC has five years to work with. If the goal is to win Super Bowls, wouldn’t it make sense to go with RW at this point. If RW is traded and they go get a rookie QB, it is going to take at least two years for that QB to reach his ceiling, which limits the window to three years and if the rookie QB is a bust, then that will be it for PC’s career. If PC wants a vet QB but at the cheaper rate, then who? Dak? Wants RW money. Mariota? Maybe, but he isn’t a leader, so would it be on the offense? At least for RW’s first few years, he had Marshawn. Carr? LV is probably looking for a 1st round pick, which SEA doesn’t have. Trubisky? Maybe, but Trubisky doesn’t have the arm that PC looks for in QBs. Then you have guys like Tyrod Taylor and Jacoby Brissett who lost their jobs to Justin Herbert and Philip Rivers. If PC wants to win Super Bowls, the biggest window is with RW, otherwise, there needs to be a QB that both PC/JS like in this draft, otherwise PC’s legacy could be ruined.

  27. Big Mike says:

    Ciwherd just now interviewing Schlereth and unsurprisingly he took the offensive lineman’s point of view stating he was disappointed in Wilson cuz plenty of those sacks are on Russ. Definitely true. I would’ve followed up with questions about the offensive scheme and how much that contributes to the sacks as well. Being a national show Cowherd went to JJ Watt instead.

    • Big Mike says:

      Of course it is indicative of what could well be a problem between he and his o-line if he stays as has been mentioned by numerous folks here.

    • Denver Hawker says:

      Schlereth is a personality, but also tells it like it is. I’m not a fan of his broadcasting, but he’s studied the tape for a couple Hawks games this year, and been a starter on Super Bowl winning teams. He’s been quite vocal against Denver trading for a QB despite the media fawning over Watson/Wilson.

      • Rob Staton says:

        I like Schlereth.

        Good personality, good on the radio and the TV.

        Likes his chilli (as do I).

        Probably a good bloke to have a night on the beers with.

        • Scot04 says:

          Makes u wonder on how free-agent O-line guys would feel signing to protect a QB who throws his guys under the bus. Especially since Schlereth is one we were all thinking about.

        • Denver Hawker says:

          100%, stories he tells on the radio here are NSFW. He comes from an era of NFL play and locker room swag that I think appeals to our generations, not the current one.

        • Big Mike says:

          Think he’s for sure a good guy
          Not real fond of him as a color commentator on TV
          Really like him on radio when I hear him interviewed
          Definitely would be a fun guy to have beers with

  28. cha says:

    More

    https://twitter.com/TheHerd/status/1361761907602911233

    Russell Wilson speaking out shouldn’t be considered a non-story.
    @ryenarussillo
    explains:

    “I thought it was a tactful commentary by him because he’s never done anything like that before.”

  29. Leonardo says:

    The Pete Carroll-Doc Rivers comparison that Cowherd made is absolutely spot-on. A coach coasting on a past championship and intense likeability. At the beginning of the year, I had hoped Schneider would use his impending extension to try and force a change in the status quo of the front office and maybe get more say in personnel. It doesn’t seem like he’s done that, so Russ is literally the only guy left with enough clout to exert any pressure on Pete to change his ways.

    If Russ ends up leaving, we might look back at the Pete Carroll extension the way we look at losing Steve Hutchinson in 05; a move that prematurely ended a championship window.

  30. John_s says:

    Isaiah Wilson may be available….

    Tennessee Titans GM Jon Robinson: Isaiah Wilson must decide if he wants to do what it takes to play in NFL

    https://africa.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/30912908/tennessee-titans-gm-jon-robinson-puts-2020-first-round-pick-isaiah-wilson-notice

  31. Mike says:

    Does anyone else think it’s possible Shaq griffin gets tagged? I’m not saying he’s worth $15 a year but other teams are going to see a 26 year old pro bowl corner and I’m not sure the hawks want him to walk away for nothing.

    • cha says:

      Tagged and kept? No.

      Tagged and traded? Maybe.

      • Mike says:

        Was thinking the same thing.

        I don’t think it’s so much that the Seahawks value him at that cap number, but other teams might.

        • Scot04 says:

          If you could get a 2nd or 3rd for him it’s definitely worth it. But if he signs it and you get 0 offers your basically stuck. Tough call. I think they give him they’re value and if he doesn’t take it, they just move on. I don’t think they take the chance on being stuck with him at 15M

      • Rob Staton says:

        Agreed.

        It’s one of the few ways they can get something back. If Griffin has a market, the Seahawks have a duty to milk it.

    • Rob Staton says:

      The reporter misses out one key fact which renders the whole article obsolete.

      What if nobody is willing to pay Carson anything close to $8m a year?

      Might’ve been worth including that thought…

    • Scot04 says:

      Plus this year has quite a few free agent RBs. I could see us offer 5M per year, but not much more.

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