New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean PaytonPost-Practice Media Availability Friday, September 18, 2015
Toben Opurum said his path to the NFL was kind of like Austin Johnson's as far as they both played different positions in college and they both have got to the this level by special teams?
"It is one byproduct of the offenses you are seeing in college now. You are seeing a lot of one back where the feature running back would be a halfback. That position, you have to find it still if you want it and it is coming from linebacker, it is coming from a lot of different spots. Erik Lorig was a defensive player first coming out (of Stanford). So finding that body type's a little bit more challenging because you don't necessarily get to see it all the time in college. I bet each year in the draft when we actually read the graded fullbacks you might read two that have a draftable grade, that would be maybe give or take, that would be pretty common. But he's done a real good job. He is smart. He can run and it's learning the technique and some of the nuances of blocking. The versatility of that position's obviously important because you'd like that player to be able to catch and yet to be able to fit up in your run game. It's not for every offense. Some offenses would have more tight ends so a lot of it is scheme design."
You mentioned last week that Damian Swann and Kyle Wilson could be emergency safeties. Is that a difficult thing for a cornerback to do?
"Well I think the first thing would be well tell me what you are playing defensively with regards to the free safety position. And yes to your question, if it is not what you have been receiving a lot of work at then there are some nuances to it that you have to quickly get acclimated with so if that were the case than you hope that you have a plan in that allows a new player to excel or have a chance to excel."
Did Damian Swann do a lot of that in college?
"(Damian) Swann did some at Georgia. I know Kyle's (Wilson) done it at the NFL level so those guys have played that position before."
The spot that Tyeler Davison plays on kickoff return, is it unusual to have a defensive tackle playing that spot and what is the thinking behind it?
"It is not unusual. It is really that you are looking for a certain body type with some athleticism and it is generally in the interior portion of that unit. In fact I would say that it is pretty common. When you get to game day 46 on the roster you are really having to utilize all of your talents so an interior offensive lineman for instance, an interior defensive lineman you feel like can move pretty well. He is athletic so those are some of the traits that we would be looking for."
You said acquiring Brandon Browner was because of the receivers that you see in the division. When you acquire a Max Unger is it kind of similar having to deal with players like a Gerald McCoy?
"Well, Gerald (McCoy) is a fantastic player and he will line up obviously over our right guard, at times over our left guard. He is quick off the ball. He is explosive. With Max's (Unger) addition you gain some versatility in your run game and also in protection and so when the guard is blocking a player over him and the center is working to him there is help. It is the away guard that can get stressed who has the one-on-one block and you just can't always slide to McCoy and yet that would be pretty common if you studied their film and you look at teams trying to help the guards on him. But certainly his athleticism and his intelligence, we saw it really the first week he was here and he is playing well. He played well last week."
Do you plan to change up your pregame routine at all?
"Well, the change took place and so, the change took place with the people. We are going to have a pregame meal and we are going to have night meetings. Those are certain things that you are doing and we are always looking at speakers and people that we feel like can help us but specifically there is a schedule they will follow, hotel the night before and get ready to play. I think the more important change is the personnel."
What about practice this week is leading you to believe that your team is making the improvement that you are seeking from game one to game two?
"I thought the tempo was good this week. I think there are a lot of young players that, and I just finished talking about this, that may not be quite accustomed to this league with regards to the balance of 32 teams and if you just paid attention to our series versus Tampa Bay and how close those games have been, overtime, final game last year at Tampa, pick a game and you are going to see games that come down to a field goal or a touchdown. I think that the sense of urgency is going to be there by both teams. It is going to come down to the details and the execution. It is going to come down to the things that we see win and lose each weekend."
Akiem Hicks was saying that there is kind of a rhythm to the pass rush and he felt like they didn't quite achieve that. What does he mean by that rhythm?
"Well the first way to get a rhythm is to force a team to be one-dimensional. In other words, once you are able to play the run and feel like you know it is a pass that is the starting point. And to put yourself in those third down situations where the threat of run is dimensioned and it is third and seven, third and eight, third and nine, those would be, if you show me a game where there has been four or five sacks I am going to show you a team that was probably behind having to throw."
What did you think about the ending of the Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs game?
"Just the final two series, it was unbelievable. We made a big point, (and) you guys have heard me talk about the great job Lovie (Smith) does with his teams. Noticeably they do a great job of poking and pulling the ball out. It has been a big point of emphasis this coming week, certainly the whole year and last night here it is. The play call is fine. If you went back to the history of our league in two minute drives with 40 seconds, 38 seconds and you start with something maybe a draw or a screen and you don't get anything going maybe you all of a sudden end up taking a knee. But there have been thousands of points scored on two minute drives in that situation so there is nothing wrong with what they were doing. Obviously the ball security was an issue."
Is Willie Snead your new emergency third quarterback?
"We haven't announced that. He is a candidate."
His quarterbacking history is one of the more impressive you have probably had among players that play other positions?
"He is a candidate. Lance Moore was a candidate. We had a few, (including) Jairus Byrd. We would typically look at the roster and we know right now who are the guys right now that have had experience playing quarterback in high school or some in college."
Do you have fun with that when you are looking at some of those guys in practice?
"It is not fun. No, we would have a plan and get into more shotgun and do some of those things (if the active quarterbacks were not available). Hopefully that doesn't happen."