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Saints coaches Pete Carmichael, Dennis Allen talk about Patriots game

Offensive and defensive coordinator, special teams coordinator held conference call with media

New Orleans Saints Offensive Coordinator Pete Carmichael
Conference Call with New Orleans Media
Friday, September 15, 2017

What are the challenge of preparing for all of the personnel schemes of the New England Patriots?
"Well, I think you just said it. They do use a lot of personnel schemes. It is a matter of film study throughout the week and you can try to get a feel for what situations you are going to use in those schemes. But like you said, they are very multiple on defense."

How would you compare the trio of top three running backs you have to the past?
"Regardless of who we have had in that room, we try to have good balance with all of them. That is our main goal. Some guys might have a little bit more of a specific role. We are comfortable with all three of them on the field, run or pass. So they provide a good balance for us."

Is it pretty common for a show of emotion to happen on the field talking about the cameras centering on Coach Payton and Zach Line*?*
"I don't even know what that was. To me that was a non-factor. Other than seeing it in media, there was nothing there."

Is that something that happens regularly between players and coaches?
"I just think guys are competitive and they are fired up and they want to compete and help win."

How much does losing Zach Strief hurt the offensive line?
"Anytime you lose a guy that is a starter, it has an effect. We like the guys that we have. We are very versatile there. So we have some different options so we will have to wait and see what we can do."

Who would you move to right tackle?
"One thing we have been able to do during training camp is to get guys work in different spots and we will just have to wait and see. Coach said we have a lot of versatility there and we are comfortable with whatever we go with."

Is Adrian Peterson's skillset a lot like Chris Ivory?
"Peterson is great with the ball in his hands and whether it is run or pass we like to get the ball in his hands. He is a very physical runner."

What are the challenges in comparing for a team with two corners, that are as good as the Patriots?
"Overall, the whole secondary is very good. Man coverage skills and like you said, they have multiple personnel groupings. We are going to have to be on our best."

New Orleans Saints Defensive Coordinator Dennis Allen
Conference Call with New Orleans Media
Friday, September 15, 2017

What is the biggest challenge that you have seen facing Tom Brady in the past?
"I think it's having some familiarity with him helps, but yet I know its New England and I know it's the same system, but yet there's some different guys out there and really what you know about New England is I think they do as good a job as anybody in the league trying to figure out how they are going to get their matchups and taking advantage of those matchups. It's really going to be a lot based on as we get into the game trying to figure out what their plan of attack is and who they are trying to attack and how they are trying to attack us."

What kind of steps were taken to correct some of the errors in coverage against Sam Bradford?
"I think anytime you start a season and especially when you start a season in the matter in which we did, there's a race and a sense of urgency to get better and one of the areas that we need to continue to get better at is our communication and I think especially on the back end of the defense. That's been an area for us to focus on and concentrate on. I've stayed encouraged with the way that our guys work and compete and look we didn't play as well as we needed to last week and certainly the way we thought we were capable of playing. We have to work to improve that and we're focused on trying to get ready for New England now."

How valuable is it to have a veteran like Sterling Moore in De'Vante Harris' ear?
"I think that's a good thing. I think Sterling being here, I think when you look at our secondary group and really with the safeties and corners there's probably a little bit more veteran presence with the safeties, but really with the corners it's a really young group so having a guy like Sterling Moore whose been around, who's smart and understands the game can be really beneficial to some of those young guys and we're obviously glad to have Sterling and he'll be a big part of what we do as we continue to move forward."

How different is the Patriots offense without Danny Amendola?
"I do not know because I have not seen it yet, you know what I mean. Obviously, I think he was a very good player for them and he served a specific role for them. They have always had these kind of really good, quick slot receivers that understand how to get in and out of a break and really are on the same page with Tom Brady as far as am I breaking this in or am I breaking this out and it will be interesting to see who they use in that role and how they try and get to those concepts and what that rapport is with Brady. I would expect just like they have always done it's always been a next man up philosophy and they will have a plan to get somebody to run those plays like (Danny) Amendola ran them and you would expect that they would plan on guys like (Rob) Gronkowski and (Chris) Hogan and their backs, Brandin Cooks some of those guys to be able to step up and be able to take on a little bit larger role, knowing that at first they lost (Julian) Edelman and then they lost (Danny) Amendola."

What are the challenges facing Brandin Cooks?
"I think the first thing you have to be able to do and the primary thing you have to do is you have to be able to stay on top of him because he is extremely fast downfield, you guys have all seen it. Those are the types of things that Brandin Cooks does really well is when he gets off the line of scrimmage and gets down the field that speed element presents a big problem .We have to make sure we stay on top of him in coverage and we need to be able to disrupt him on the line of scrimmage and try to have to make him restart his feet off the line of scrimmage and throw the timing off of the route and then we need to be able to get some pressure on Tom Brady and the faster we get to Tom Brady it doesn't allow Cooks to get downfield."

Do you feel like the fullback position has become almost nonexistent?
"There's no question that the fullback is kind of becoming a little bit like the dinosaur, you just don't see them anymore. There not around, but yes, I think having a fullback in the game presents a little bit of a different element from a defensive perspective and how you are going to gameplan for teams that are going to be in these two back sets or in these heavier personnel groupings. I think what you've seen with most offenses even if a team doesn't necessarily have a fullback per say on the roster, I think most teams still have the ability to take one of their extra tight ends or somebody of that nature and be able to put them in the backfield and still be able to run their two-back running game and two-back play action type of stuff with that, but certainly this has become a game that's been a lot more spread out. One thing I will say with these teams that do have fullbacks, New England being one of them, is they'll bring the fullback onto the field and give you a heavier personnel package and make you think they're getting in to run it and all of a sudden they will flex their fullback out and put him out wide and get in a no-back formation thinking that you have bigger personnel on the field, so it makes it harder to defend the whole field with that bigger group out there. Some teams will use that as a decoy and get you to think run really spread you out and throw the ball on you."

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