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Saints transcripts: Lil'Jordan Humphrey, Carl Granderson and Terron Armstead Media Availability| Sunday, Nov. 28

Players look ahead to Week 13 matchup against Dallas

New Orleans Saints Wide Receiver Lil'Jordan Humphrey
Post Practice Media Availability
Sunday, November 28, 2021

What's this year been like for you just going through it?
"Just a lot of work. Just trying to be the best player I could possibly be. And just so I can go on field, stay on the field and kind of find my role for the team. And yeah, that's kind of just how it's been. Just grinding, trying to find my way."

Mentally, how do you handle the fluctuations?
"I mean, I feel like I'm even keel guy. Just stay the same, right? Not everything will go your way all the time. So it's always just about going out there, working my butt off and just staying ready, just in case Coach (Payton) does call me up and be able to play so I'm just trying to stay ready."

How frustrating was it for you that you had to spend a couple of weeks on the COVID list and spend even more time away from the team?
"It was real frustrating, actually. But everything happens for a reason. It probably just wasn't my time. It was just my time to sit back and just watch and take in some more work. So it just wasn't my time. It was frustrating, but got over it."

Did you feel okay during that time?
"I felt great. Yeah, actually didn't have any symptoms. It was a weird little thing for me."

What do you think led to the increase in playing time over the last two weeks for you, and then obviously, in the first game, it seemed like that led to more in the second game?
"I don't know, probably trust. I feel like I have gained the coaches trust a little bit more. And that's part of the reason why so I hopefully I can gain some more trust to hopefully get a bigger role."

What area do you think you've had to do that in most?
"Just blocking, knowing the scheme, being able to get open, just knowing that I'm going to get open. I feel like I struggled with that over the past couple of years. So just something that I've worked on and now they're starting to trust me a little bit more."

What's the process of working on getting open?
"Everything. Just knowing like different situations, understanding like how the body works as a DB, how corners work and what he does well, what he does not do well. Just understanding the game and the little details of the receiver aspect. I think that was the biggest thing that helped me get more separation."

Where would put the team's headspace right now I guess kind of reacting to the losing streak right now?
"It's frustrating, but I mean I feel like we're all here ready to work. We know we've got a lot more in us. We know we can win so we're just ready to work every week, come compete and end this losing streak."

Is that kind of like a thing where if you can just kind of focus on the practice and hope you get those little things right, can you kind of work your way out of it?
"Just doing a little things I feel like. Yeah just like going back to the drawing board, going to practice and I feel like yeah, just doing a little things. Going back to doing a little things right is the biggest thing for us to keep success. We're just working on fixing the little things so we can end this losing streak."

When you're trying to prove yourself or keep the trust up, is that harder when you're going from quarterback to quarterback and there's kind of some changes like do things change for you at all from guy to guy?
"I don't think so. I feel like I have trust in all of them too. And we all do. We've worked with them since OTA's. So I feel like we have a feel for all the guys so it doesn't really matter which quarterback is in. He's going to get to work in. Just do what we do and play ball.

What is it like as a player, especially an offensive player, when you hear (Sean) Payton after a game say obviously we've got a look at everything we're doing, who we're doing it with, there's various ways you can take something like that, but how did you receive that?
"I mean, just work. That's how I can take that. Just get back to work, getting in the weight room, getting in the film room, film study, get with the coaches and just figure something out like within yourself. You've just got to dig deep within yourself and just figure out something out just to do better. So just get back to work. That's all I can say for that."

When you're going through that self-improvement process, how much it is post practice, how much of it is film work, what's the combination?
"I mean, I couldn't give you a number. But I mean, I feel like it's a lot post practice, pre practice film study. It all combines with each other, so I feel like it's an equal amount of time with all of it, even though I don't get a lot of time on the field, but I think it's an equal amount time for all of us."

New Orleans Saints Defensive End Carl Granderson
Media Availability
Sunday, November 28, 2021

Do you like Dak Prescott is one of the more mobile quarterbacks in the league?
"Yeah, I've been watching a lot of film. We've been playing mobile quarterbacks lately so, you know, keeping him in the pocket. So looking forward to (facing) Dak Prescott and keeping him in the pocket and getting after him."

Is Dak Prescott's ability to run as big of an emphasis this week?
"Well going into the game, quarterbacks might not move a lot all season until they play us, you know, then they're running everywhere. So I guess that's going to be the thing for the rest of the year. Every time we play mobile quarterbacks just to contain them and get after them."

What is Dallas doing well offensively?
"They have a good running game, so they're rushing the ball pretty well. They have a strong front line offensively. So it's going to be a test for us this week and we're looking forward to holding them to our standards."

What's the difference between Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard?
"It's two different backs. I feel like Elliott is more of a power back and the other (Pollard), he does it all. He plays receiver, he's agile, he can move, you know, he has got a lot of fly sweeps. So we got to know the personnel going into the game and focus on who's in the backfield."

What's the team's mindset in the middle of this losing streak?
"We stand together, we are a unit. So we stand together, we are not pointing the finger at anyone. We're united and focusing in on the details as a whole and we excited to play on a Thursday night again, in front of the whole world. We ready to get back out there and get after it and try to get a win."

What was it like catching up with Josh Allen after the game?
"Yeah, it's been a while, you know, I've been trying to get a hold of Josh ever since we left Wyoming. So it was an exciting game to get after him and run after him a little bit and touch bases with him. You know, back in college at Wyoming every time I hit his arm, I got kicked out of practice, so I was excited, I told him after the game, I said, this was my first time ever tackling you without getting in trouble for it."

Are you guys excited to play on primetime in front of the whole world?
"We got a lot to prove still, we got a lot of ball left and we haven't been playing like ourselves. So we wanted to get back out there and fly around and make a statement."

What kind of review would you give the defense overall?
"You just got to look at the big picture, you know, we didn't win the ballgame as we wanted to. They had a lot of rushing yards, so we're going to do much better up front. It starts with the D-line. So forward nobody's pointing the finger, we're a unit, a whole, so the defense, we got to step up and we got to play ball and I'm looking forward to that because we're going to do that."

With Marcus Davenport and Tanoh Kpassagnon being out Thursday night, does that add pressure on you going forward?
"Oh, I would not say pressure, but it does give other guys opportunities. We miss Marcus Davenport and Tanoh a lot. That was a big key to our defense, so we missed them (Thursday night). But nobody feels sorry for us, we're the New Orleans Saints, so it's next man up and we got to be ready to go out there and do our job. It's professional."

New Orleans Saints Tackle Terron Armstead
Media Availability
Sunday, November 28, 2021

Did you have a routine rest day today since it was the beginning of the week?
"I've been working through some things. I'm just trying to do everything possible to get ready for this game (Thursday)."

How did you feel against Buffalo?
"It's always hard to tell right after the game, with the adrenaline still going on and all of those things. It's still early in the week right now, so, just working through so I can be out there on Thursday."

What's the environment like in the locker room after losing four straight games?
"Just have to get back to being ourselves, really; get back to having fun and bringing that energy. That's really the biggest difference, getting the bad vibes and losing out of our system and out of our environment. That's really it. That's the message. Bring the energy back, the love, the passion, all of those good things. A lot of positive things come from that."

Do you feel like getting back to winning starts with fixing the offensive struggles?
"I mean, we don't have a choice. There's no other choice. We have to score points to win games. It's no secret that our offense is struggling. We've been having our challenges and complications, but if we want to (go to the playoffs), we need to change. Like I said, it's no secret that we need to improve in a lot of different areas to put some points on the board. It's not just one position group, we have to collectively be better and put more points on the board."

How much accountability has the offensive line taken for the slow starts the offense has had?
"We look to take the responsibility for all of it, honestly. We try to go in and impose our will and establish the run game. It's hard to get going if the run game isn't working, so, that's challenging. It makes it really hard on the offense, so it's on us to be able to produce and start making more plays."

Why do you think the offensive line has had struggles with establishing the running game?
"It's a collection of things. We just have to be better. To narrow it down to a simple answer, we have to be better. I think we have done a much better job communicating as the season has progressed, but I think we can do more from an offensive line standpoint to create opportunities for big plays."

Drew Brees mentioned on the NBC broadcast that he's not seeing the rhythm he's used to seeing on the offensive line. Does the center and the lineman calling out more protections affect the offense more than outsiders realize?
"It's different. I think Erik McCoy's done an exceptional job taking on that responsibility. It is a big added responsibility he has added to his game. It is different man, it is different with the rhythm and tempo, but we can't allow it to be noticeable or be a negative thing towards what we are trying to do. I do not think the (offensive) tempo is the problem. I thought we got lined up, got our play call and were rolling. Execution just needs to be a lot better and sharper."

Are you guys trying to have a more positive mindset moving forward?
"No, we're not sugarcoating anything. No, not at all. I think we need to bring our energy and compassion back. That's an element of the game that we can't mimic, you have to go out there and create that momentum. We're trying to bring that back. We're not trying to spin anything to be more positive, no."

Are you trying to be less negative moving forward?
"I mean, being negative does nothing for you. If we're finger pointing or getting down on ourselves, what are we doing? This is our job. We have to come to work everyday and put our best foot forward, be productive. There's never a situation here where it's acceptable to lose or to be down. It's the NFL. We're still in everything to this point (playoffs) despite having a four-game losing streak."

How painful was it you to have to watch games from the sideline for a couple weeks while sitting out with injuries?
"It's tough man. I always want to be out there helping the guys and going through (battle) with my brothers, for sure. You're seeing more guys go down and having a sense of urgency to do everything possible to get back. It's a real thing. You're trying to make sure everybody that is returning is healthy enough to play, functional, and can go out there and be productive. We don't want to put anyone out there too soon."

What is it like for a ten-year veteran seeing this offense struggle right now, already having seen this offense operate at such a high rate of efficiency in the years past?
"Yeah, (Buffalo) wasn't pretty from a results standpoint. You can turn on the film and see a lot of things done well; blocked fronts, receivers open, quarterback making good throws, there were things we did well. But collectively, we didn't put enough together, and string plays or drives together (to win). It was hard to watch and look at spotty situations like one area doing extremely well one play and then the next play, not so much. It's definitely challenging, in an offense that we've been explosive in and had a ton of success, but we're struggling right now. We need to figure out a way to get this offense going right now and be more productive."

Do you see the little plays over the course of the game mount up into bigger struggles as the game goes on?
"Oh, for sure, yeah. It's not by accident that when you get the negative, self-inflicted plays and penalties, it's a recipe for bad offense. Even when you're doing so many good things well, marching down the field, but you down and turn the ball over. So, no."

How frustrating is it to make those little mistakes knowing this team is more capable than what they're showing right now?
"We've got to correct them. Every day. It can start to sound cliché, saying we've got to be better, but that's literally the only thing we can do. You have to come to work without being sensitive, be coachable, be honest with the fact that we have to improve in a lot of areas. We've done a lot of things well, but collectively, to be that machine we need to be in order to make any sort of (playoff) push, we have to improve."

Is this year different where you're monitoring how other teams are doing relative to the playoff standings?
"I mean, the point of view is different than the last few years where we've been the one or two seed pretty much the whole time. The point of view is different, but the end result is the same. We all get into sudden death once you get hit January 5th. It don't really matter where you play or who you play. We've been a number one or two seed and exited in the first round, but we've also been to the NFC championship, Super Bowl, and all of those good things. We just have to make sure we're ready for the tournament though, not just sneak in or have some teams lose to let us get in, none of that. We have to put ourselves where we belong."

Does the extra seed or week of practice help give you more time to correct the issues?
"I don't necessarily look at the numbers or play the elimination game. We just have to focus on Thursday, really. That's a big one. Dallas is a really good team playing well right now. So, we have to get that one and see where it goes after that."

Is it a learning process for the lineman to know how and when a quarterback moves in the pocket?
"Every quarterback is different with their comfort and where they like to throw the ball from, how they move in the pocket, their feel in the pocket is all different. So, just getting more comfortable and getting more snaps with the guys back there. Ultimately, our job is to protect. Wherever (the quarterback is), our job is to keep anybody off of him. That's just the nature of the game."

How much different has it been this year than it was with Drew Brees?
"Yeah, I played with Drew for eight years. I knew exactly where he'd be depending on the snap. So, it's been different from Drew (Brees), to Teddy (Bridgewater), to Taysom Hill to Trevor Siemian, even Luke (McCown). It's always been different."

What stands out to you about Micah Parsons on film?
"He's an athlete. He's a guy that's really having fun, enjoying the game, and has elite change-of-direction (skills). He's somebody that's been disruptive and very productive for (Dallas). He's definitely someone we have to watch."

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