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Transcript - Demario Davis Conference Call 11/19/20 | Week 11 vs. Falcons

New Orleans Saints linebacker Demario Davis talks Matt Ryan, cancer-free daughter

New Orleans Saints Linebacker Demario Davis
Video Call with New Orleans Media
Thursday, November 19, 2020

Can you talk about the faith that you guys were going to be able to turn it around on defense? Was it based on past performance?
"I think your mindset always has to be on your process, not on the results. You have to focus on your process and understand the results are a byproduct of your process. Early on, when you're trying to work on so many different things, it can take a little while to catch stride. We never focused on whether we would have the success or were struggling. We just kind of focused on just making sure our process was right, that we were focused on the right things and as we get to where we want to get in the season and as we start to make strides to that final goal, it's going to be important that we continue along that way."

Based on what Matt Ryan and the Falcons offense has been doing the last couple of games, where do you see them starting to hit their stride?
"I think when you turn on the tape, they have a lot of explosive weapons, the offensive line is doing a good job of protecting him and he's getting the ball out very quick and knows where he wants to go with the ball. There's a lot of dynamic players around him and they're doing a good job of getting those guys the ball where they're strongest and stuff. It's going to be a good challenge for us."

Malcolm Jenkins seems like he's getting his hands on the ball a lot and making a lot of plays these last couple games. Where have you seen him get more comfortable within the defense?
"Malcolm has been a phenomenal player in this league for a long time, so I don't think it's surprising or shocking to anybody that he's playing a high level. It's cool to see it up close and personal, what so many other people have raved about him being a good leader, about him being a good football player. High energy player makes a lot of plays. The coaches can count on him doing a lot. Having him on the defense just makes us better and so definitely I'm not shocked at the success he's having and the level he's playing at. I think to go where we want to go we're going to need him to play at that same high level."

What do you think about the opportunity Jameis Winston or Taysom Hill or that both of them will have this week?
"I think the coaches do a great job of putting us in the best situations to win. I think they've done a good job of bringing in the right guys and of having them on the roster. I think it's a good situation (if) either one of those guys are in the game. They're going to give us the best chance to win. I think it's a great opportunity for them, but at the end of the day it comes down to us being able to play good complementary football. It's not one phase of the ball that has to play at a high level. It's all three phases. That's what we're going to have to do regardless of who's back there. Definitely excited about the opportunities we have."

What does it say about the leadership of this team to withstand some injuries the last couple years that would take some other teams out?
"It speaks a lot about the organization, the types of guys they bring in the building. The type of culture that they work to build and the leadership that we have in the locker room in all different position groups, at all different levels. I think if you have the right culture, you're able to do that, to know no matter who's in the game you're going to get their best effort and it's going to be someone that's going to go in and do their job at a high level, but also the camaraderie and chemistry have always been in synch with one another. I think that's the part that most people can't see, there's an unspoken camaraderie that's happening inside the game. We're in synch with special teams, special teams is in synch with the offense and we kind of gel off of each other. We almost can sense the way the game's going or how it's going to go and know who needs to pick up where. That's what you need to get to where we want to go. We just need to continue to do that and keep doing it at a higher level."

You are more than halfway through the roundtables on racism issues that black women face. What has been your takeaways from those roundtable conversations that you have had with people?
"That's a great question. I think the biggest overall theme is understanding that a lot of times African-American women are left out of the conversation and understanding the things they go through as individuals and collectively. A lot of the times we talk about racism and address the needs of African-American community and it doesn't necessarily trickle down to the black women specifically. A lot of times we talk about sexism and the issues that women face and a lot of times black women are left out. Also they have a lot of unique things to them and being black and being female. Just being able to understand whether that's education or health care or totality in all the issues and injustices that we are addressing, making sure that we take time to focus on the unique groups, particularly when you talk about this unique group with racism and sexism the same, where they intersect, making sure they focus on those specifics. I've been educated, we've been educated as a team and hopefully our community has been educated more on something that we probably haven't paid as much attention to what we have before and we are better for it."

When you talk about process, is that avoiding reacting to a bad game or a bad play, that sort of thing if you are focused on the smaller details?
"Yes, I think when you have your process right, you never get too high or too low. Sometimes you can have unbelievable success and you get back to your process. Sometimes you can get certain situations or something that you weren't expecting that didn't go their way and just focus on your process. When you have your process right, you know what you have to tweak, you know what's right, you know if the ball just didn't bounce your way. I think if you look at the history of the Saints, especially the past three or four years, when you look at the consistency of wins, it tells you a lot about the process and there's a reason why the team is able to play at that high of a level consistently is because the process is right."

We haven't had a chance to chat about it, but can you discuss the good news surrounding your daughter lately and her recovery?
"Going through something like that when it's any of your children especially your youngest child, is tough and challenging. I don't wish that on any parent. But also know there are many parents that are going through it. It's unbelievable news. It was hard. We just put our faith in God and we made it through. Actually today we found out our daughter doesn't have to go through anesthesia anymore, major checkups, just normal visits from here on out. Nobody wants to go through something like that, but we were glad if somebody had to go through it it was us, because we know we have such a tremendous platform and being able to use that platform to bring awareness to  retinoblastoma, which is a very rare form of cancer (helps fight it). And we told our pediatrician about this two or three times and showed him pictures of our daughter's eyes to look at, but there's just not enough research for pediatricians to pick it up quickly. Only 300 children get it a year, so it's so rare that many parents miss it. If it causes parents to do a little more checkup, a little more followup, if they notice something in the eyes of their children, then we can be better for it and if we can bring more awareness to it than we can bring more funding for research. I think it can help a lot of other families. Nobody wants to go through that, but we're a family that just believes God allows everything to happen for a reason and we're going to always turn adversity into something positive and that's how we're going to use our platform to bring more awareness to it. Carly-Faith, she's doing amazing, 100 percent healthy and just praising God for that."

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