New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton - Conference Call with New Orleans Media - Wednesday, November 7, 2018
Is there one thing that stands out about you with Cincinnati?
"They're coming off a bye. They've had obviously some big wins. They're 5-3 and had some tough losses. Their turnover numbers are good. They've always been good since Marvin's (Lewis) has been there. I think they play real good third down offense. Their two-minute offense has been good. They'll give you some no huddle. On defense it's a physical defense. It's a front that we think is strong, stout (and) very active. They are talented in the secondary. It's been a while since we played them last. But we're diving into as much film as we can and getting onto this gameplan. Today will be the first day we'll give the base install to our players."
How does Geno Atkins fit on their defensive line and what problems does he cause for your line?
"He's a real good football player. Each week we've talked about someone else, but man he's active (andn) he's strong. I think he plays with great leverage and get off. We'll have to handle that on the road especially."
Have faced players like Ndamukong Suh and Aaron Donald last week, is that preparation for him or are they all different players?
"Each of those players certainly has different traits, skillsets that separate themselves, but the key for us is watching as much tape as you can when they're at home and watching his get off. How he sets an edge, what he tries to do when he's pass rushing, how he plays a double team, all those things that can take place. He's isolated a lot because he's playing a lot of three technique, but he's a good football player."
You're facing another member of the 2017 running back class in Joe Mixon. What do you remember of that group and about him?
"Each one was a little different. We spent time with Joe (Mixon) when he came on a visit. He was strong, big, physical (coming out of college). He has real good receiving skills, someone that became natural to and you saw it in the college tape. I think you're seeing some of his best football now and you watch him. He's strong (and) he has real good vision and burst. He's something and he'll be one of the keys for us and how we're able to defend him, because he's a young guy that I think is just coming into his own and putting up great numbers. He's extremely hard to bring down and he has real, real good speed."
We see the big stats from Mike Thomas, but what do you feel like you are missing from your receiving corps?
"Nothing right now we're doing well. We're doing well. Each week we'll have different players in different spots tight ends, running backs. But you're asking a question I think based on the other reports so I'll get to the next question. We worked out some players yesterday, which we do every week. We may or may not sign a receiver. That has nothing to do with how the other guys are playing. I just finished saying we worked out receivers. I'll get back to you if we sign one."
What has been holding Cameron Meredith back in recent weeks?
"Nothing's been holding him back. Oftentimes it's the progression sometimes he didn't play as many snaps in Minnesota based on our personnel. He had some big plays against Washington, so a lot of it's just the progression of what we're doing."
How does the Cincinnati offense look different is A.J. Green isn't available?
"It is a huge impact. He is someone that commands a ton of coverage respect. (He is) Obviously one of their better players, so it's hard to ask how it'll look. You have to defend the offense in its entirety and obviously the offense itself will look similar, but how will it be without him in the lineup if he is not playing? He is one of their better players. That is always difficult."
How is Cincinnati so successful in red zone defense?
"They have been good. They've got a new defensive coordinator Teryl Austin is in. He was in Detroit a year ago. They've done a good job down there. We haven't gotten to the red zone plan yet but understanding teams are going to get down to that end of the field obviously, trying to hold (them) to field goals. Those are four point plays especially the third down snaps to take place down there, so we're going to have to be on point with our red zone."
What have you seen from Tyler Boyd this year?
"He's had a really good year. I remember him coming out to kind of come into his own. He's strong, has strong hands in traffic. He is smart."
How did Trey Hendrickson do filling in for Marcus Davenport last week?
"Good. We were pleased."