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Brees: "We are Never Totally Satisfied, but Happy with the Progress"

The Saints signal caller talks about the progress of QB Chase Daniel, the team's running backs and TE Jimmy Graham.


Listen to QB ' Post-Practice Presser

New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees
Post-Practice Media Availability Transcript
Tuesday, August 30, 2011

It seems like Chase Daniel has faced less competition for the number two quarterback slot in 2011 than 2010. Do you see a comfort factor in him?

I think that what makes him a good player and will continue to make him one is the chip that's on his shoulder and will continue. He's not thinking about the guy taking his spot. He's thinking about taking my job. That's what he should be thinking about, because I think any guy who's a good backup quarterback in this league, you have to visualize yourself as a starter and prepare yourself like that every day. He does that.

By having some starters absent from practice today, does that alter what you do?

No it didn't. Keep in mind, we're only two days removed from the Oakland game, Sunday night game, travel across country, getting back at 5:30 in the morning yesterday. Obviously we're playing again on Thursday night against Tennessee. It's a quick turnaround. Obviously what's foremost in our mind is preparing for Green Bay, to prepare both physically and mentally for that game.

Was today's preparation more Green Bay than Tennessee?

No, today was still a camp mentality, competing against ourselves.

Are you happy with your progress from the first preseason game to the third?

Yes, never totally satisfied, but happy to see that we've progressed in the right direction each game and obviously the third preseason game is the one where you get the most significant amount of playing time. I thought we got a lot accomplished in that game, what we wanted to, which was taking whatever we did at Oxnard and carry it over to the game. I felt like we got a tremendous amount of work done while we were there, great reps. Everybody got a shot to play pretty significantly in that game on Sunday night and I thought the tempo was great. I thought the sense of urgency was great. I think the result shows that.

Is it safe to say that the run game has been a highlight in camp? Why do you think that is?

You look at the weapons we have in the backfield obviously, Pierre Thomas who's been here for a long time, Mark Ingram, a rookie, who's come in and really reestablished his physical presence, Darren Sproles, a veteran who we didn't even know all of the things he was capable of until he got here. He's a guy who wows us every day and we're excited to see him continue to progress within his role in the offense. I'm excited to see Chris Ivory get healthy coming off of what he did last year. You watch a guy like Joique Bell in the game and Patrick (Cobbs) and every one of these guys is taking advantage of their opportunities and obviously the offensive line up front despite the change at center and right tackle, they haven't missed a beat. I feel like that's one of the hardest-working groups we have on our team and that shows in their performance.

How do you keep all these running backs happy?

There's lots of ways to use a back besides just handing him the ball. We've shown we can be very flexible in this offense going back to Deuce McAllister and Reggie Bush a one-two punch, Aaron Stecker, who saw a lot of time here and was a big part of what we did. He was the third guy, but the guy who at times had to step up for us and did exceptionally well, so I've looked at it over the years and within our offense and the way Sean Payton and our coaches game plan you're always looking for opportunities for those guys. In the end, everybody wants to touch the ball and play and obviously that's not going to happen, that's impossible. You definitely try to give all those guys a number of opportunities.

Do you think that getting the team out of the heat in California was good for them?

I thought our work in Oxnard was very productive. We got out of it what I had hoped and it's not over yet. We still have the preparation going into Tennessee. Once Tennessee ends, we're in a game week because it's one week from the day that we're in Green Bay opening the season and those count. For us, it's continuing the preparation but getting more into that game week routine.

What do you think of the production you've seen from Jimmy Graham?

The funny thing is we had even more opportunities. Both of us feel we left some things on the field. It's good that you can walk about of a game you win 40-20, you catch five for 73 in the first quarter and a half and say we still left a lot out on the field and do better. He's extremely talented, can do a lot of things and I'm excited to work with him and watch him progress.

Are you impressed with some of his back shoulder catches and diving?

He's 6-6, 260. Try to cover him.

Are you happy with how the offense is now, nine days from the Green Bay game?

I'm not satisfied. We have a lot to do, but I like the progression. I like the fact that we've gotten better a little each day since the start of camp.

How much do you anticipate playing against Tennessee?

I'll be honest that we haven't talked much about playing time yet. We just arrived back. We'll see. I really don't know.

Was the change in practices, mandated by the CBA, a lot different?

It's a change. It's hard to gauge this year's two-a-days. We didn't have OTA's, minicamps to go along with it. It wasn't a normal offseason that we would have had here, so it's hard to parallel the two in terms of how the preparation and if the young people got enough reps. The fact of the matter is we have nine days. We have to be ready for the game no matter what. Everybody's in the same boat as us. It's not like Green Bay had extra time to prepare. We all are in the same boat, so I feel like we've stuck to things, but we still have work to be done.

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