New Orleans Saints Tackle Terron Armstead - 2018 Training Camp Presented by Verizon- Saturday, July 28, 2018
As an offensive lineman, the day you put the pads on it kind of gets real, right? This is when you get into it?
"Yeah, for sure. You can get a real look. It's hard to get the time under your hands and your placement in the jersey. We play the game in pads, so it's a good time to start working towards actual game day."
Early impressions of first-round pick Marcus Davenport?
"I like Marcus. I like him a lot. I like his attitude more than anything. (During) OTAs, he had some struggles. It was new to him, a lot of the speed in the NFL, but you can see the first day he came out with some improvements. He's strong and he's got some long arms. He's got some tools to him and with reps, the more he's doing it, the more he's going to be able to learn more about the game, how to win and how to beat tackles on a consistent basis."
I know you've spoken to it before, but feeling back to full strength, how much healthier do you feel especially on Thursday going into this training camp than in years past?
"I'm a whole lot better. This is my first (healthy) start in camp since '15. That's a great feeling, alone and to get those reps. I've been playing games without practice and practicing during games, so to be able to get that rust off, I have a lot of work to do. I am super rusty techniquewise, eyes, and hands, It's a ton of work. To be able to start it now, it will help me in the long run."
How big of a goal is it for you to play all 16 games and what was the frustration like in past seasons where it's been so close, and you just haven't been able to do that?
"It's been extremely frustrating these last two, three years. It's been extremely frustrating for my teammates, not being able to be out there for those guys and having the guys move around (positions to fill in). Football is what I love to do. I love to play, and I love to be out there, so it hurts me when I when I'm not able to. I'm looking to play every week. I am going to take it one day at a time, a game at a time, but of course I want to play every single day."
You hear all these fans screaming out here behind you, what does it mean to you to be back out here with all these fans here today?
"It's great. The energy was great. They were screaming as soon as we came out the door and that's what we expect from the Who Dat Nation. We expect that energy. That's what we get in the Superdome and that's why our record is consistently pretty well at home."
I know Andrus Peat's still kind of working back in and whatnot, but to come back to this camp as one of the better offensive lines in the NFL and have all five starters potentially week one, what do you think that means to your unit and the continuity?
"That is huge. He is a great, young player. He is only getting better. He still has a lot of growing to do, a lot of getting better to do. We do not want to rush him and have setbacks like I have done prior seasons. Just being too anxious to get out there, like overtalking trainers to get back out there. We do not want to do that with him. We have time. We have time right now, but he is anxious to come back. He is working his butt off and we have depth. We have great depth. We have Jermon Bushrod, John Fullington, and Andrew Tiller. We've got a bunch of guys like Josh LeRibeus, that come in and perform well."
Would you say that you found yourself in the offseason keeping the same routine with the idea that all of these injuries are just bad luck and eventually the odds will come in your favor or would you say that you found yourself second-guessing your offseason and saying should I try new things to avoid injuries, such as new stretches or new activities?
"I've done pretty much everything as far as injury prevention. I've been a lot of places, out of the country, spent a lot of time with different doctors just trying to get over that hump. Anything I can do that's proven to be effective I've been doing. This go-around I was able to just start the offseason getting stronger in areas that were injured before and wasn't able to train an injury because it was still healing. So being able to start the offseason and getting stronger in areas that I haven't been able to, that's the difference in this offseason."
If you put a number on it, maybe from the beginning of last season, that middle portion and then once you came back in the end, is there a percentage of health that you could put on it based on how you feel today?
"No, I really don't like to give percentages. If I'm playing I'm going. The defense doesn't care what percentage I'm at. So, if I'm out there I'm 100. I don't really like putting a percentage on it. I feel pretty good and I'm excited to get back to work, get back to knocking rust off and performing well."
New Orleans Saints Safety Vonn Bell - 2018 Training Camp Presented by Verizon - Saturday, July 28, 2018
How does it feel to put the pads on for the first day?
"It was a great day. Great energy out there, great enthusiasm. We started off fast on defense, but I always love to get the pads on and pop around the pads a little bit and just have fun with your guys out there."
Is it always a good thing to see Drew Brees and maybe Coach (Payton) a little frustrated during practice?
"Sometimes. That means the defense is winning. We're out there having fun, flying around, making plays around the ball, knocking passes down, intercepting the ball so it's always a good feeling to see that."
How much fun is it for you defensive guys to put the pads on? I know you guys like to fly around and hit.
"For sure, but we have to take care of each other and take care of our teammates. It is always a good feeling to put the pads on, pop around, run around, have fun with each other, and tell them get up for the next play."
Does it matter to you whether you start or just be on the field?
"I always want to be that guy, but we will let time tell."
Why did you change your number?
"It's a new chapter in my life. My mom and I talked about it. It had to be a biblical reason. It's just a new chapter in my life and a new beginning."
Has your role changed on the team let's say versus playing alongside Kenny Vaccaro or has it changed from one year to the next?
"Right now, we're just going out there and competing for the spot. Nothing really changes in our gameplan right now. We're just going out here and competing, stacking days, getting better each week and each day with the unit as a whole. We just keep on getting better and competing at the spot, and we're going to see who the best man is."
How comfortable are you with this defense now?
"Very comfortable. I've been with Dennis Allen going on three years, Aaron Glenn, coach Pete (Giunta) and the same system. Very comfortable now. No minor adjustments. I have got some veteran moves that I can do now that I took from other guys in previous years. Very comfortable in this scheme. It's great to out there and have fun with my guys."
It's only been three practices, but to watch a rookie like Tre'quan Smith go out there and make all those catches, has he been impressive to you so far?
"Yes, but we don't want him to catch any. He's a spectacular guy. He's putting his head down, grinding each day, and listening to what the coaches have to say to him, and just trying to get better."
Is there anything you see that makes him special? I know he's only been here for a little bit.
"It's really early right now, so we'll just have to see how the days go."
Did you make the coaches run today?
"Yesterday they did for two turnovers. They were supposed to today because we got another two turnovers. Every time we get two turnovers they have to run half-gassers. Hold everybody accountable."
Is this as deep a defense as you've seen since you've been here?
"I think so. With the positions, we keep on getting younger each year. There is great depth at each position and there is so much competition so you have to love it. Go out and have fun, we are always rotating. You never know who you are going to be with because we always split the groups up. We are always trying to see how everybody feels with each other. We're just trying to get the right group."
How is the rotation with the safety group? It looks like you guys could have three guys on the field at once?
Yes, you never know. Especially with the Buffalo sets with how we do the three safeties. You never know who is going to be a nickel, who is going to be a free, who is going to be a strong because we're all safeties. We're just not labeled as strong or free. We can all rotate, and all confuse the quarterback in that way by disguising our looks or realigning and how we roll and spin down. It's all different."
You guys were pretty good last year, how do you think you can improve and be better this season?
"We put last year behind us. We always step into a new day every day. We always step into a new step every day. We always put our front foot forward, just keep on going, just keep on building each day and each week."