New Orleans Saints Quarterback Drew Brees - Post-Practice Media Availability - Sunday, November 25, 2018
It’s bizarre here, Thursday game to Thursday game. But just another day here at the Saints facility? Nothing changes at all?
“The only weird thing is walking in and seeing that there's NFL games being played today. Otherwise, it feels like a Wednesday. That's our prep. It's a seven-day week which is nice after coming off a four-day week. Still there is that race to get your bodies back and then mentally to put the last game behind us and then go on to the next opponent. On to the next opportunity.”
Everybody says next man up. Why are you guys able to do it better than most?
“We talk about it a lot. I think there is an expectation level that is set on both sides of the ball whereas guys if you come in and need to play a certain role for us, you're expected to play at a certain level and we're going to prepare you so that you know what to do and you go out there and play with a ton of confidence. It’s still a team game. We're all working together to help us all be successful.”
What have you seen from Dallas on film? Have you gotten a chance to check over them so far?
“I've seen a lot of them. They are playing at a really high level right now. Obviously, they’re hot, (especially over) the last three weeks. Defensively, they fly around, they’re very well-coached, disciplined, they are taking the ball away. They are just doing all the things that the great defenses do. Getting pressure on the quarterback. Good against the run. So really in every facet of what you would say is winning football, championship caliber football, these guys are doing it right now.”
Since you grew up a Cowboys fan, is it just something that's no big deal?
“I can't say it's no big deal. Going back to the home state. That's where I am from. I am from Austin, Texas. I remember waking up every Sunday morning and watching the Cowboys after church. That was a big deal growing up. That was obviously a heyday for them with (Troy) Aikman and the boys. I played a state championship game in the old Texas Stadium. There's a little something to it. I mean just a level of pride being from the state of Texas, having played football in the state of Texas, and then going back and playing the Cowboys.”
You’ve had some really good games against the Cowboys, is there anything in particular or was it just the way it played out?
“I guess it’s just the way it played out. I feel like we've had some really good teams when we played them. We've had playoff teams. I feel like there's always been a lot at stake. You're always playing for a lot. So these are the type of games you play in.”
When did Dan Arnold first show up on your radar in training camp and what has he done earn your trust?
“Dan (Arnold) has done a great job. He, obviously, has a unique skill set with his size, speed, length. (He’s) really receiver by trait that we've kind of bulked up playing the tight end position. I've played with some of these guys that were transition guys. Antonio Gates comes in as a basketball player hadn't put his hand in the dirt I don't know ever and ends up becoming Antonio Gates. And then, of course, Jimmy Graham. Plays one year of college football and then we bring him in and becomes Jimmy Graham. It's kind of fun to take these guys that you would call maybe projects in the beginning and begin to see them kind of mature within the framework of the position. I think for him what I love most about him is just his eagerness to learn and to get reps and to gain experience and to get better. He wants to please and he's so receptive to everything you tell him. So the sky's the limit for a guy like that. It's really just about experience and gaining that kind of trust and confidence in some of the little nuances of what we do.”
Do you feel like if you're doing what you're capable of, it doesn't matter who’s playing defense against you? Is it fair to say?
“Obviously, what the defense does to a degree dictates how we play, what we’re calling or maybe how we’re doing things, but for the most part as we go throughout the week of preparation, we talk about our execution, we talk about our tempo, we talk about our in and out of the huddle, in and out up and down, getting the ball snapped, guys knowing what to do so they can play fast, play confidently. We feel like if we do that, it doesn’t matter who the defense is, that we can outplay them, ou execute them. You’re obviously, conscious of certain guys and situations and what does this team do on third down? What does this team do in the red zone? What does this team do in certain situations? But for the most part, we just focus on detailing our stuff.”
When you have your individual goals this offseason, coming into this season, how realistic is the idea of possibly having your best season yet?
“I always try to be a little bit better each and every year and, to me, sometimes that's not reflected in the stats. Maybe sometimes it is, but of course I’ve set personal goals. I have personal aspirations. Many I write down, but it's all within the framework of what helps me put my team in the best position to win. That's an approach I take every offseason and this offseason was no different.”
Jason Garrett mentioned today that you’re playing like you’re 23. Do you feel like you’re 23?
“I feel 25. I don’t feel 23. I mean mind over matter. You cannot stop the aging process, but I think you can delay it a little of that. I am having fun playing the game and I have a definite routine. It takes a lot of time. Not just the time to prepare for the opponent, talking film work and studying the plan, practice time and all that, but the time it takes to recover and take care of your body and the maintenance and the weight room and all those things. But I have a good routine. I like where I am at, but you feel like there are still strides to be made.”
*When you have a kicking group like Wil (Lutz) and (Thomas) Morstead, they’ve been so reliable this year, but especially in late game situations. When they’re performing the way they are, how much easier or at ease does it make the offense? *
“I’ll say this: you get into games where you say, ‘Listen it's okay to punt, it's okay to play the field position game.’ It gives you a ton of confidence knowing that we've got a guy who can pin them down in Thomas Morstead and then we also know, man, we just get in range let's sustain the ball, score points. So when you have a kicker like Wil Lutz, man, we feel good about our chances of kicking long field goals, our chances of getting late field goals at the end of the half, at the end of game that end up being significant plays in the game.”
They’ve been here together for three years now, what does continuity do for them?
“I think continuity is huge because not only is there confidence level for us, the team, and him (Lutz), but I think you talk about kicker-snapper-holder (combination). Those have now been consistent for a while and that's there's a lot to be said for that too.”