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New Orleans Saints vs. Jacksonville Jaguars: Coach Sean Payton, Jameis Winston, Taysom Hill press conference transcripts

Saints defeated Jacksonville 23-21

New Orleans Saints Coach Sean Payton

Opening statement:

"I have just a couple of things relative to the game. Obviously, I liked how the game started. I thought we had good energy. I don't know how many possessions defensively we had them three-and-out. We hit some explosive plays. We felt like, just from a scheme standpoint, we were going to have to throw the ball early. (Jacksonville has])kind of a heavy front that plays the run pretty well. I thought a number of guys played really well. Hitting those big plays early on, I think, helped loosen things up. Overall, I was pleased, and of course, you start the second half, maybe you get down in some spots position-wise. Some guys had to play more, but we will get a chance to come in tomorrow morning and look at the tape and kind of go from there."

On Marquez Callaway's abilities:

"Listen, we did. We saw it last year. Yeah, we saw it last year. We saw a lot of it last year. I think [Marquez Callaway] is a player that began to gain confidence at the end of the season, and it's carried over into this season."

On what he liked from Jameis Winston:

"The explosives. I thought they pressured (Jameis) on one play, and he was able to kind of quickly switch protection and get into a route for a touchdown. I thought there were some really good exposures there early on, and I thought we handled it well."

On what he needs to see to determine a starting quarterback:

"We'll see. I'll keep you posted. Yeah, I don't have a timeframe though. When we know what direction we are going, we will let you guys know. We're not going try to anticipate saying, 'Hey, it's going to be midweek or next week.' That's, I think, the best way for us to handle it. It's kind of how we've always handled something like this, but I was pleased with not just the quarterbacks. I was pleased with how we played as a team for the most part."

On how important it was to see Jameis Winston perform well:

"Listen, it's important to see all (the team perform well). The thing I just finished telling you is, it's a team game, but we're always updating our résumé. All of this film doesn't disappear. You're always trying to put your best foot forward and create that value for yourself as a teammate, as a player that has a role. Whether it's in the kicking game or whether it's on offense or defense, whether it's for depth, it's something that is a sense of urgency for these guys."

On Marcus Davenport's performance:

"Look, those guys played a quite a bit of snaps. We'll see how (Marcus Davenport) did on tape. He's healthy, and he's going to be important to us."

On his confidence in the cornerbacks:

"We will look at the tape. We have good competition there."

On if his plan for Taysom Hill's snaps:

"If you look, everyone in his group, Phase 2, again, we're counting reps. We're not looking at the quarters, snap-wise. I think it kind of went like we planned. There were a couple of positions where we were a little light and guys had to play more."

Quarterback Jameis Winston

On his first starting opportunity as a Saint:

"I have not started a football game in so long, so I was so excited to get an opportunity to start and lead the pack. It was exciting, and the rhythm was great. (The) offensive line was phenomenal, and we had guys like Marquez (Callaway) making plays all night. You (have to) love that."

On importance of Callaway stepping up as a starter:

"Yeah, absolutely. I think that's what makes Marquez so phenomenal. Like every time the lights turn on, he does an amazing job. I'm just happy that the Lord blessed me to take this opportunity, but as we all know, we have another game next week. We're going to cherish that tonight and move on to Arizona."

On Callaway's progression through camp:

"I think (Callaway)'s just an incredible football player. I mean, the guy was undrafted, right? Who missed out on that guy? I'm happy that we were able to get him. It speaks volumes of our organization and how they see talent. The thing about him, man, it's like when he's out there, it's like we're playing little league football. He loves it so much; he has no fear in his heart. He has elite energy. He's out there playing football. It's fun to have teammates out there that see the game the same way that you see it and just really love taking advantage of these opportunities."

On his strengths:

"I think I'm really good on decisions, I just have to get better on accuracy. I had some balls that I really would like to have back that would have been big completions for us. In particular, that one ball that I threw to the right that was long. I just have to continue to work and get better. Like I said, I'm focusing on execution. As long as I'm executing the right way, my eyes are in the right place, and I'm making the right decisions, I can live with it." (

On the night before his first start:

"I was just thankful. These opportunities do not come too often. Like I said, a whole year not starting a football game. That's what I said in our team prayer, 'Lord thank you for this opportunity.' I was just blessed, blessed that I was able to go out there and have a good game and honor Him. I missed it. I missed going out there and leading the pack." 

Quarterback Taysom Hill

On his review of his performance:

"It's hard to really give you an evaluation without seeing the film but, just like any other game, there's plays that I would like to have back. I think there's some good stuff that we did and continue to build on and get ready for the season."

On Lil'Jordan Humphrey battling back from practice performance:

"I love throwing to LJ. I think he's had a really good camp. I think he's had a really good preseason. I don't remember any specific drops (from practice), maybe he did. LJ is a guy that I trust, that I love throwing the ball to. He fights for you, he's a big target, so I'm not surprised with the way he played. I love playing with him. I love getting reps with him."

On his anticipation for a QB decision:

"This goes back to what we've discussed all camp, and you can control what you can control. That's it."

On his trust in Marquez Callaway as a receiver:

"I think this is the same story that we have seen all camp. I think that Callaway is a guy who continues to get better and better every day. Talk about a guy that you look at and you see a one-on-one matchup and you love creating opportunities for him. He continues to showcase what he can do making plays on the ball. That was a heck of a catch that he had tonight and it's the stuff that we've seen in training camp, so it's nice to see that stuff translate in a game setting."

*On Callaway's confidence as a young player: *"I think there are special dudes, I think that Marquez is one of those guys that's really talented and knows he's good, and the more opportunity you give him, the more he thrives. I didn't watch him play a ton in college, but that's what he did there, too, so it feels like there's not an opportunity that's too big for him. There's not a situation that's too big for him. You create it for him, and he steps up."  "I think this is the same story that we have seen all camp. I think that Callaway is a guy who continues to get better and better every day. Talk about a guy that you look at and you see a one-on-one matchup and you love creating opportunities for him. He continues to showcase what he can do making plays on the ball. That was a heck of a catch that he had tonight and it's the stuff that we've seen in training camp, so it's nice to see that stuff translate in a game setting."

On Callaway's confidence as a young player:

"I think there are special dudes, I think that Marquez is one of those guys that's really talented and knows he's good, and the more opportunity you give him, the more he thrives. I didn't watch him play a ton in college, but that's what he did there, too, so it feels like there's not an opportunity that's too big for him. There's not a situation that's too big for him. You create it for him, and he steps up." 

Wide receiver Marquez Callaway

On if he tried to layout on his touchdown reception:

"I was running and got thrown off balance a little bit. On the way down, I was trying to keep track of my concentration."

On if his confidence is growing:

"Every day I go out there and say that it's a new day and an opportunity to get better. In practice, we got against the DB's and we are getting pushed. Even when you have a bad day at practice, it is something to learn from. There are no bad days especially if you learn from it. I'm excited for the game tonight. I'm happy. The team is happy. Tomorrow my goal is to watch the film and see what we did good and see what we did bad and get back to it." (

On being successful on every route:

"Our coaches try to put us in the best situation. The quarterbacks are going to make the plays. They give us the best opportunities to make the plays out there."

On making one-handed catches:

"As a receiver, we get paid to catch. We run routes and catch. When it touches our hand, We have to come down with it whether we use an arm or a leg, two hands or one hand. We just have to come down with the ball.

On if he checked his cell phone after the game:

"It's still going off right now. I had to put it on do not disturb. I called my mom and my dad and I was talking to them. I'll probably call them when I leave here. I'm going to soak it all in right now and enjoy the night. We got the win and then I'll prepare for next week."

Defensive tackle Jalen Dalton

On playing a football game in some time:

"It has definitely been a journey. I am taking it day by day and rep by rep. I'm trying to get better each play. The game gave me an opportunity to go out and show what I have done in practice. It is just another step. It is nice to be out there again making some plays. I'm leaving plays out there though, so I need to clean up some of the stuff. I just need to get back to work."

On if practices are carrying over to the game:

"I feel like practices are harder than the game to be honest. There is intensity and strain in practice. Come game time, it makes the games that much easier. I have to clean up some stuff. I have to put trust in myself and put trust in my defense as well." (

On the stuff he wants to clean up:

"Just some blocking schemes. I just have to play my technique. It's a big thing with trust. Your teammates have to trust in you that you are going to be there and make plays."

On if he has a preference on where he plays:

"Wherever they need me. I don't have a preference. It's just a great opportunity to be on the team and to be able to make plays.

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