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Transcript - Eric McCoy Conference Call 12/22/20 | Week 16 vs. Vikings

New Orleans Saints center Erik McCoy talks about the Saints’ offensive execution and the Vikings’ defensive unit prior to the Saints Week 16 matchup against the Minnesota Vikings at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on December 25, 2020.

New Orleans Saints Center/Guard Erik McCoy
Video Call with New Orleans Media
Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Is there a sense that you guys are still kind of waiting on putting together the offensive performance that you guys are kind of capable of. Do you feel like you've hit that yet this year?
"No, not even close. I'm not going to say we have a long way to go, but I think we definitely haven't put our best stuff on film. I don't think we've played our best game as an offense yet. Whether that's rust or chemistry, or whatever it is, I still don't think we've played our best game and not even close to it."

So what do you think is holding you back? I mean, obviously, if you knew the answer than it probably wouldn't be an issue anymore. But what's kind of been like the most consistent issue do you think?
"Just execution, we have to go out every day in practice, in the games, execute our job. That falls on all 11 of us on the offensive side of the ball and we've got to improve on it."

Obviously, first game with Drew Brees back. As an offensive line, is there any adjustment period when you get a guy back at that position?
"I would not say there really was. I mean, Drew's been the quarterback here for what? 16, 17 years now. The guys are used to him, the guys know him. We're just getting back in the groove of things."

Terron (Armstead) was named to another Pro Bowl yesterday. Alvin (Kamara) too and five guys in total, what's it like playing with Terron and Alvin and those guys?
"I mean, Terron's a great guy on and off the field. He's a leader in the room. He's a great friend to have and I couldn't be happier for him. That's a big achievement. I know that he's happy about it. So it's a good thing for him."

Talking about Minnesota's defense, what have you seen from that front? I know, obviously, hasn't performed the same way they did when you guys last saw them. But what have you seen from them?
"That they're a very solid, disciplined group. They're going to play their gaps, they're going to be where they're supposed to be and they're physical. I mean, regardless what the numbers say, they're a physical defensive line, and they're going to play their responsibility really well. They're really well coached."

How big of a role have Dan Roushar and Brendan Nugent played in just keep keeping you guys cohesive, despite all the moving pieces you've had this year?
"Yeah. Well, first off, they're two of the best O-line coaches in the game. Whether we have injuries or COVID things going on, they've always gave us the next man up mentality and make sure that the next person in was ready to go, that they're prepared. They've been coaching everybody the same, whether you're a starter, whether you're a backup, whether you're the jumbo tight end, you're getting coached the same every day. Everybody is ready when it's their time to come."

How do their styles work together?
"They're opposite, but they're similar at the same time. It's an interesting dynamic. I wish I could get more into that, but I really don't have a great answer. They are just both great coaches. That's all I can say."

How often do you like practice the sprints downfield for a block? I saw you doing that again I think on Latavius (Murray's) touchdown this week.
"I mean, it's a big emphasis in our room. Coach Roushar is big on getting to the ball, getting downfield just in case something happens. I'm looking for a block, but I'm also just there just in case the ball is on the ground, somebody needs to recover it. So I wouldn't say that I practice it. It's becoming a habit by now."

Your run game last week wasn't what I know any of you wanted. Can you pinpoint to anything in addition to the third downs that was a catalyst for that?
"I would definitely say the biggest thing by far was the third downs. I mean, it's hard to get all the runs or all the called runs that you want when you're one-of-11 on third down and you're not really getting the chance to field and call those runs. And honestly, I wish I had a bigger and better answer for that, but third down played the biggest role in that."

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