New Orleans Saints Defensive Back C.J. Gardner-Johnson
Video Call with New Orleans Media
Monday, November 2, 2020
Could you just kind of talk us through the incident yesterday, from start to finish, you know, how it started and what happened, what'd you see?
"Didn't see nothing, it was no incident. We won the game. There's a lot of, he say, she say. Nothing happened, nobody got spit on I know it should be nowhere on the field of play when a game is going on. So I'm not answering an more questions about that. So on to the next question please."
I guess not specific to that play, but just in general, your style of play, do you like to kind of be a little bit of an agitator and get guys in their feelings?
"I didn't do anything, I'm innocent. I play football. It's football, guys get chippy. I don't want to tell you like, I wouldn't be there if I'm not me. So, I'm not going to change for anybody. I'm out there playing football so if they go farther than that, I don't get in between with that, it had nothing to do with me."
Let me rephrase that, like if you're playing hard and you get a guy to act out, did you take that as a win when he gets himself tossed from the game?
"It has nothing to do with me. If he's acting out, that's on him."
We haven't talked to you since the Michael Thomas incident. What could you say about what led to that in practice?
"He's still my teammate. There's still respect for him, can't wait for him to get back so we can play football. I'm not speaking on that situation. I'm sorry. We're good, I see him every day. So, can't wait until we get (him) back, so we can win."
I mean even dating back to college, you have a very animated style about you. Is that something that coaches always try to tell you to find the right (mix), don't cross the line but they like having you near the line (of emotion)?
"If we're not talking about football please, like about the game, something other than this. I don't want to talk about this."
Let's switch to football, on your season, really everybody in the secondary, it seems like a lot of good things, but also battling inconsistency. What's your review currently of the season you're having?
"It's not a me thing. I'm all in it for the team. I'm here to win, just like everybody else is. Of course I've been having a pretty good season, but my thing is improving, helping and being the best teammate I can be and not letting my teammates down. So that's my message right now."
Obviously Marshon (Lattimore) got that big turnover last night and I know that's something that he said that the defense in the secondary in particular has been focusing on trying to do. Do you think that could kind of be something that could maybe spark you guys to go on a run in that area?
"He had two. He had two of them (if he had picked up the one that would have resulted in worse field position on fourth down if he picked it up). But like you said, we haven't touched the ball in the back end since probably what? The first week. And we had a couple called back but, it's something that we actually got to work on in practice. You got to build a habit, you got to build a habit of wanting to get to the ball, put your hands on the ball. Because the more you do that, it's going to fall your way in the game. But you got to practice that habit. I'm glad to see that we got (one), we broke the ice, get one in the game now. So let's keep rolling."
Every time we talk to DA (Dennis Allen) or AG (Aaron Glenn) they're talking about trying to get you guys to keep your eyes in the right place. What's the process just when that needs to tighten up, you know, how do you practice that and how do you guys improve it and get back to that fundamental?
"Just practice. It comes in practice, it comes in repetitions. You have to keep doing it, repping it, repping it, repping it. Everybody in the world isn't going to have perfect eyes, but if you have your eyes in the right spot at the right time on your keys, you look right, you do right. As Coach says so, that's just something you've got to rep. It's a rep, repetition thing."
Is that constant maintenance like it's not like, you can have it and if you get, you know, a little lax with it, it can slip away?
"You can't get relaxed because the moment you get relaxed, the guy will run by you. So, you can never get relaxed. You've got to always be on your P's and Q's when you're going out there, when it comes in your eyes."
You guys will be getting your second look at the Buccaneers, but it might be different if they have Antonio Brown on the field. What do you think someone like him being introduced to the first time could add to that offense?
"Any time, any play. Let's play. Congratulations. I'm glad he's back, get another shot. He's a good player. You can't speak negative about him, you see what he did at Pittsburgh. So just go out there with a good game plan, go out there, do what we've been doing and play good defense and focus on our job. And do what we got to do, not what they have to do or (concentrate) who they have (in a free agency pickup). So we just worry about us and just going out there and competing and doing our thing."
I know you probably haven't gotten into film study on Tampa Bay yet, but have you noticed just sort of from afar that they've really sort of found their rhythm in the passing game and been on a hot streak?
"I've been watching film, I've been watching film. I'm an NFL player, (there) isn't a reason I shouldn't be watching film. So to go to your statement, yes, I've been studying and we've been paying attention, not heavily (Yet). But we know what's going on, we know what to expect, but we got to dive in a little bit more this week."
What can I do for the mentality of a defense just you guys making these plays every week late in the game and stepping up in those crunch time moments?
"That's what we are supposed to do, that is what they brought us here for. We are here to win. That's it. You got the best, one of the best secondaries, everybody sees the numbers, forget the numbers. We've got some of the top DBs, Malcolm (Jenkins), Marshon (Lattimore), Janoris (Jenkins), back there, Marcus Williams. We got a team. The linebacker core we have, the D line that come together. We just worry about piecing it together and just keep it rolling, find a way to win. And that's all we're doing right now is find a way to win, bit by bit, we're just stacking the blocks and (need to) keep going."