November 29, 2021
"Changing Lives, Improving Communities"

Louisiana Gridiron Football Rising Star: Ellis Mckneely

Ellis Mckneely is a class of 2022 defensive lineman from Woodlawn high school in Baton Rouge, La. The 6’2 235 pound recruit has the agility to play defensive end, and has flashed his strength and run stopping ability at the defensive tackle position. Coming off a sophomore campaign where he compiled 10 sacks and 13 TFLs, the ceiling for this young man’s potential has yet to be capped. Ellis tells me he has a 275lb bench, a 405lb squat and 425lb deadlift. He currently has a 3.5 GPA.


When did you start playing football?

I started playing when I was around eight years old, it was for BREC league.

Did you play any other sports growing up or was football your first love?

My first sport was tee ball, after that I started playing basketball and then football. For basketball I played the ‘Big Man’ Center position.

Did you play any other positions growing up besides defensive line?

I’ve played defensive end, tight end, offensive tackle, and some defensive tackle.

Going back to last season, what were some of your goals?

I wanted us to win all of our games, go to the championship, and I wanted to make All-District.

Who would you say some of your biggest influences are?

My dad, my mom, my uncle Leander Mckneely Jr. and my big cousin Garrett Brumfield. My dad, because he loves football, he played it in high school. My mom, because she just pushes me through all the hard work, and it influences me. My Papaw, he played ball, he influenced me too before he passed away.

Who would you say your favorite NFL player is?

Chase Young, because we play the same position, and I feel like I can learn from him. The way he moves, everything he does. I feel like he is a positive person, a positive role model.

What do you feel motivates you the most?

God. I just try to put God first in everything I do.

On a scale of 1-10 on game day what would be your ideal performance number?

A 10! I’m ready to go, ready to play. I have high spirited coaches and teammates. We’re ready to get after it.

Going into this season, what are some of the personal goals that you have set for yourself?

Make All-District, All-State, get a Player of the Week. Also keep my grades up.

Speaking of grades, what is your current GPA?

A 3.5

Since the pandemic has been going on, what have you been doing to keep yourself in football shape?

I’ve been working out every day. I’ve been trying to go to camps, but those really didn’t happen. I practice hard. For working out, I’ve been running and lifting weights, trying to stay in shape. I would work out at a gym, or at a park by my yard. Sometimes at school if I had the chance.

When you are getting ready to graduate in the next two years, what would you want your coaches and teammates to say about you?

That I am the hardest working young man that they ever coached. That I am always positive, that I am a good player, I’m good with everybody.

Ellis wanted it noted that he wanted to thank his coaching staff and his teammates at Woodlawn High School.