Saints News | New Orleans Saints |

Joe Vitt Says Home Opener Will be a Great Experience for Rookies

Saints Assistant Head Coach/Linebackers Coach Joe Vitt says playing in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome is "electric" even in the preseason

New Orleans Saints Assistant Head Coach/Linebackers Joe Vitt
Media Availability
Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Are you guys encouraging Chase Daniel to run the ball more?
"He sees man coverage and he sees the defense with his back to him and he sees the running lane, he's going to take it.  You'll even see a guy who's not noted for running do that, a guy like Peyton Manning, so as soon as he sees man coverage, two high safeties and the underneath defenders have their backs to him, the best way to get a first down is to take off and find a running lane.  He's hit some man coverages in the preseason games and he had to hit two today."

Was the offense up to your liking today?
"I'm going to look at the film first."

Did Marquis Johnson get dinged up yesterday?
"Yes, we held him back today. He'll play in the game this week.  He'll go through the walk-throughs tonight and then he'll practice tomorrow."

Can you talk about the excitement of being in the dome on Friday?
"Anytime we have a chance to play in front of our home fans is great.  I think it's going to be a great experience for the new members of our football team and our younger players.  Everyone knows it's electric once you get in there, even for the preseason games with our fans.  We're looking forward to the challenge of Jacksonville.  It's a new coaching staff.  (Mike) Mularkey knows us very, very well from his days with Atlanta, so it's going to be a good challenge for us."

Did you notice the banner flying around during practice that said "Free Payton"?
"No, I didn't notice it."

When you see a handful of dropped passes by players on the offense, what do you tell those guys during film?
"I think number one, it's a lack of concentration.  Number two, it's a lack of ball security.  Number three, it's hot.  They're getting tired, they're getting worn out and you have to work through these dog days of training camp.  It's certainly not acceptable.  Those balls have to be caught."

What can you say about Travaris Cadet and what he's done so far?
"I think he's a great fit for this offense.  He's a guy that can line up on the outside lanes, create mismatches against the linebacker, and potentially create mismatches against the safety.  I know we saw some of his receiving skills coming out of the backfield.  You couple that with the fact that he can be a factor in the return game and he's an interesting prospect."

Does it surprise you that he has all this ability since he's played so many positions over his career?
"Listen, I think it surprised all of us a little bit or else he would've been a drafted player.  I think this is a kid who's really taken full advantage of the opportunity he has right now.  He's shown us his versatility.  He really is grasping the offense.  You don't see the kid making a lot of mental mistakes.  He gets lined up and plays at a high level.  I guess he can create some mismatches."

After all the plays we've seen Jonathan Casillas make over the past couple of days, is it just a matter of Jonathan Casillas staying healthy?
"That's it.  As everyone knows here, to play in this league you have to be dependable, but more than dependable you have to be durable.  Your teammates and your organization have to be able to count on you for 16 games.  He's worked hard in the weight room and he's worked hard this offseason to get himself stronger and to work towards that durability factor, but the key with him is staying on the field."

Will the team be inside tomorrow?
"Yes, we'll be inside tomorrow."

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content