New Orleans Saints Defensive Coordinator Dennis Allen
Conference Call with Local Media
Friday, September 9, 2016
I know that this is not your driving force for this game but is it natural for you to want to show the (Raiders) what they're missing?
"Reality is, we're just going to go out and try to win a game. I think anytime you try to make it about anything other than that, then you're taking away from what your main objective is and what your main goal is. Our focus is really about trying to beat a team and trying to open this season 1-0, win a home game at the (Mercedes-Benz Superdome). That is really all that we have discussed. That is really where our focus is."
How do you look back on your time in Oakland just in general?
"I am appreciative of the fact that I got to be a head coach in the National Football League. Not everybody gets a chance to do that. I am certainly appreciative of having that opportunity. I am thankful that I got that opportunity. I learned a lot about things to do and things not to do. I think I am a better football coach because of it."
Do you see yourself saying hello to (Oakland Raiders quarterback) Derek Carr and (Oakland Raiders defensive end) Khalil Mack before the game?
"I really don't know. That is not where my focus is right now. My focus is on getting my mind ready to call a game, and getting our guys ready to play a game. There are a lot of people there that I have a lot of good feelings towards. I root for a lot of those guys because I think that's part of the foundation that was set within that program. I think they are beginning to see some of the success of that."
What do you see out of their offense?
"I think they're very explosive. I think they're explosive in the run game. These runners are good runners (and) their offensive line's really big and physical. I think they really do a nice job. I think this Lee Smith's one of the better blocking tight ends that I've seen in a while. Obviously, outside on the edges, they have a lot of speed outside. The quarterback is operating at a very high level. He can make all of the throws. He is extremely intelligent and I know that from my time being with him. I think it is a good offense and I think it's an explosive offense."
How underrated is Derek Carr's mobility?
"I know when I'm watching the tape I do not underestimate that (Carr's mobility). I do not underrate rate that. The thing that makes him unique is that he's a prototypical passer. He can go back in the pocket and he can go through his reads, go through his progression, spit the ball out on time, but yet if you give him open lanes and things aren't open right away, he can hurt you with his feet. I guess there must be a misconception out there that he can't hurt you with his feet, but if you watch the tape you wouldn't think that way."
What has been your message to your young group of cornerbacks, that Carr could come after them?
"Go out and compete and do the same thing as you've been doing throughout OTAs (and) training camp. Go out and compete and make plays on the ball. They're going to make some plays, it happens every week and so you just have to go on to the next play and keep fighting and keep competing and I think our guys will do that. I think that's kind of been there mentality and that's why they are in the positon that they're in."
How important is it for you to find a way to get this crowd on your side early on in the game?
"I think that's our responsibility. We need to go out and play good defense and if we play good defense, then the home field advantage will be there for us. We want to go out and play well and make sure that we do a good job and take the ball away a few times and give our offense possession of the football in good scoring position. I think that's just the job of the defense, that's the job of the team, to play well and if we do that then we'll certainly have a home field advantage."
Where did you go on vacation this summer?
"I was a little bit all over the place, but actually I was back up in the Bay area, visiting some friends from my time there and spent a couple weeks up there in the Bay area."