Training Camp Media Availability
Friday, August 1, 2014
How do you see your role this year? Do you feel like it is going good?
“Yeah I feel like it is going to, Coach Payton is a mastermind. He knows all of our tendencies and what not. I am pretty sure he will put all of his players in the right positions to be successful. I feel like my role is going to increase a whole lot.”
Do you guys welcome the physicality of the defense?
“Yes sir, because running the ball wins games. Running the ball brings those defensive backs up so you can go over the top of their heads. It is kind of 50/50 having a sharp run game and a sharp pass game takes a toll.”
Do you think you found a niche?
“My role is the same as it was in college. I pretty much play everything here. I play receiver here. I play running back. I return kicks. I recover kicks. I don’t think that is going to change. I think that is just the type of player I am. I am pretty sure the Saints see that and I view that the same way as well. I pretty much will always be the jack of all trades.”
Is that how you think you stuck with this team?
“Yes sir, the more you can do, the more you can bring to the table, the more your value stays up. Some guys, especially in today’s game, the versatility is a major factor in what we do now a days in the NFL. I feel like my versatility and me being able to split out and me being able to be in the backfield, me being able to go down and cover kicks at a high level, me being able to return kicks at a high level is an advantage I can bring to the table.”
Is your vision and cut backs something you have always been able to do?
“Like you said, the more repetition, the better you get every run. When you go into the film room, that is where you really learn the small and basic parts of what you should do and what keys you should be on certain runs. It is gradually getting the feel for the offensive linemen, getting a feel for what they are reading and what I am reading, pretty much when we are all on the same page.
When Darren Sproles was traded, did you view that as an opportunity to step up?
“To tell you the truth, I didn’t know how to view it because like I said, Coach Payton is a mastermind and he knows what all of our roles are. He said a speech the other day in our meeting room about what happened to him and that we had to accept the role and it is important for you to know your role and not try to play out of your role. That plays a big factor, but when Sproles got traded I saw that as an opportunity, but I didn’t know what to expect.”
How has the opportunity changed?
“When (Darren) Sproles was here, I learned from Sproles. We competed every day in the weight room, in the film room and out here on the field. I saw how he approached every day. He never wasted a day because the days you waste you will never get it back. It’s all going to be a memory whether it be a positive memory or a negative memory it is up to you for you to see the outcome of that. Pretty much, we competed and I learned a lot from him.”
What did you see was the main problem in the punt and kick return game last year?
“I feel like there are 11 men on the field. I feel like we are a unit and you can break one pencil but you can’t break 100. I feel like once everybody gets on the same page from the L 4 to the R 4 to the Mike to the punt returner, even to Coach (Greg) McMahon and Coach Stan (Kwan). Everybody being on the same page and everybody having that same force in their mind that we need a big return and do the small things right, eventually we will break the kick return.”
New Orleans Saints Linebacker
Training Camp Media Availability
Friday, August 1, 2014
How much do you look forward to a scrimmage?
“I think the scrimmage is going to help us a lot. It is one of those things where I think in my position or any d-line, outside linebacker position you are pretty much hitting every day now. The scrimmage is a good chance to tackle. It gives us a chance to brush up on tackles and angles, some things we need to work on.”
Does it feel any different to you?
“It is just one of those things where you are excited, but I have been doing it for a while so it is still practice.”
How do you think you fit in with this team last year and talk about where you are at now?
“Last year, getting traded over I really didn’t know what to expect. I now have a year under my belt, so you kind of understand more of the defense. You are kind of learning the small things that help you learn your responsibility and going out there and doing it. I think anytime you can get experience in the same actual scheme it helps a lot.”
Are we going to see double digits sacks from you this year?
“I will do what I have to do. If double digits sacks come, if they don’t, I will still go out and play. Like I said, my whole thing is I go and I do my job and I do it. As long as my teammates can depend on me or whoever gets the sacks or whoever gets whatever, I am happy for Cam (Jordan), Junior (Galette), I expect a big year from Akiem (Hicks) myself. Guys like Clyde (
You take pride in stopping the run.
“Yeah that’s because right now that is what they are asking me to do. So I go out and I take a lot of pride in doing that and I take a lot of pride in doing whatever they ask me to do.”
What does it take to go against the run?
“I think it is one of those things that it’s a mindset. It’s not one of those things where you’re going to go out and you’re not going to get the glory for it. The guys will get the sacks. They will get the glory they deserve and you go out and just play football. That’s all I know how to do.”
What’s the best part of the red zone battles?
“Everything is like something that happens in a game. If you’re preparing for a game you have to in the red zone and everything happens fast. The runs happen fast. The pass happens really fast because you have a short field to work with. It kind of works on reaction lining up. You have to be on top of your game or else they will be able to score.”
Can you talk about
“Oh yeah, you have a lot of guys out there making plays. There’s a bunch of young talent on this team. That’s just what it takes, putting the talent together and everybody doing their jobs and going out and playing.”
New Orleans Saints Quarterback
Training Camp Media Availability
Friday, August 1, 2014
How did the skeet shooting go the other day?
“Absolutely we turned it into a competition. It was a lot of fun. Pre-camp, that was a blast. The Greenbrier here has all kinds of different activities to get into. We all, in our quarterback room, have a bit of outdoorsman in us. I probably more than the rest of them, as you can imagine. It was a lot of fun. As you can imagine, Drew (Brees) was the dead eye and I always tease him because he has to be or else his reputation starts to fall a little bit as the most accurate. It was a lot of fun. We got to shoot sporting clays which are different flights of the clays coming out. They could be a rabbit on the ground, they could be a quail coming from behind or in front or side to side. It fits what we do, finding an object, tracking it, tracking it’s speed, it’s trajectory and trying to lead it the appropriate amount and make an accurate shot. It is a lot of fun.”
I thought you would beat Brees at that?
“Well, I am not going to make excuses. He had a good day.”
How excited are you about the scrimmage tomorrow?
“I can’t wait. It’s what you are looking forward to, it’s to finally take all of your install, all the time you spent in meetings, all the tape we’ve watched, all the reps we’ve had this far in camp and apply them in controlled, but real situations. We are looking forward to it. I think it’ll be a good scrimmage and there will be some ebbs and flows of it, but the main focus is to execute without a coach standing besides us, to be put in a position to think on the fly and to not have a script so to speak and just play ball and see what happens.”
Can you talk about your relationship with
“Coming into last year, Ryan was the typical rookie. He kept his mouth shut when he should and he just absorbed. He was a sponge. This year, after just standing around watching, now he’s kind of has a lot more questions and the great thing about it is he is at the point now where he even has a few answers for himself so he doesn’t have to rely on Drew (Brees) or I for all the answers. That is what a room is supposed to be. Drew is supposed to lean on me to see things that maybe he didn’t see. I am supposed to lean on Ryan and vise versa. That is how a room should be. There shouldn’t be anxiety about whose position and this or that because we all wear black and gold at the end of the day and we are all shooting for the same thing and that is a championship. We want to win ball games and we want our team to be better. If each of us are helping each other out, helping each other get better than ultimately that makes the whole of our team better. That is the focus on our room.”
When you were Ryan Griffin’s age, who helped you?
“When I was a rookie, coming in I had Jeff Garcia and Kelly Holcomb in Cleveland. After that I was traded to Tampa and I had Brian Griese and Chris Simms and about two years later, Jeff (Garcia) joined us in Tampa and I had Brian Griese and Jeff Garcia. I was fortunate to have guys that were, Kelly was in his 10th or 11th year. Jeff was in his 11th year when I first came into the league so I had guys that have been around awhile and been in these types of systems, West Coast type of systems that had a lot of verbiage, put a lot of responsibility on the quarterback and so I got to watch them operate that and ask them questions much like Ryan’s doing. Those guys I leaned on and they helped me tremendously. It is my way of giving back to the game what was given to me. I think that is the appropriate way to look at it.”
Do you give each other a hard time when there is a fumble from the snap?
“We have different ways of dealing with it, I will just say that. We have different ways of dealing with it. But again, those are execution issues that if we can’t get a snap off the ground, then we can’t get a play off the ground and that starts with us. We take a lot of pride in, before practice on the line with the centers taking 20, 30, 40 snaps before practice to make sure that is clean. Now sometimes, those are going to happen. You have a slick ball or whatever, but the point is to limit those opportunities for that to happen and to be sure handed.”
What is something that you do not miss about being a rookie in the NFL?
“Oh man, I don’t miss not having answers when I see a blitz. When you are a rookie and it is the first time in that system, then most of the time you don’t have the tools or at least the awareness of the tools at your disposal at the line of scrimmage. Whether it be a new mike id, an audible, a line slide, or whatever to help yourself get protected and hand signal a quick route to a receiver. As a young player, as a quarterback, you walk up to the line, you know something is coming, but you don’t know what to do about it, that’s not a very good thing. I don’t miss that at all.”