New Orleans Saints Running Back Latavius Murray
Video Call with New Orleans Media
Wednesday, November 18, 2020
I wanted to ask you about just this rivalry itself, I know you've been to some other cities and had some other rivals like Green Bay and Kansas City. What makes this rivalry so different? Saints vs. Falcons, you feel like?
"I would say probably just the battles that they've had over the last few years. Obviously, them coming in and whooping us at home and then us bouncing back, following that, two weeks after that, at their place, was a big win for us to close out the division. So, I think just the games, just the physicality, the way those games are both played. I would say that."
You think it's more intense than some of those other ones you've been a part of? Or is it about the same?
"It's about the same. When you talk about, division games, division rivalries. Obviously, you know what's at stake. You know, your number one goal for a team should be winning the division. So, I wouldn't say it's any different. But obviously, I think there's, like you mentioned certain teams within other divisions where a game means little more. And I think it's no different from this game here."
It seemed like part of Teddy Bridgewater's success last year was how much everybody in the locker room seemed to really like him? How much of that would you say Jameis (Winston) has?
"Well, look, I think, yeah, everyone in the locker room, loved Teddy, had a lot of respect for Teddy. But I don't want to ignore what Teddy's ability (is) and what he's able to do on the football field. And I think no different from Jameis (Winston), Taysom (Hill) and what they're able to do as football players is what's going to speak first off. But obviously, for both of those guys and Jameis (Winston). We love him in this locker room. His passion about the game, his work ethic. I think all of those things stand out. And we love him because we see that every day."
Obviously, Drew (Brees) didn't practice today, but he was there watching and everything. What does that say I guess about his leadership that he, even though he's dealing with what he's dealing with, he's still there and doing what he can do from the sidelines and watching?
"Yeah, Drew, he really wants to be out there. And so, it hurts him that he can't be and that he's not healthy, to go out there and compete. Talking about a guy that's competed for a really long time and played at a high level and loves the game and loves his teammates, and loves his team. So, I think that's what, stands out and the reason why he is still out there, observing and watching practice and being present. Because he loves this team. He loves the game and he still wants to have an impact on the sideline being there."
As a fellow running back, does it ever surprise you or impress you just how efficient Alvin Kamara is in the passing game?
"Look, so if I'm being honest, prior to coming here, obviously, I got a chance to play against Alvin (Kamara) in Minnesota. And thought he was a, a great player, but being here with him and seeing the things that he does in our offense, the multitude of things he does in this offense. He has great hands. Obviously, he has great vision when he runs the ball. But, I think what's stood out to me the most, especially this season, being able to watch him, is his hands and his catching ability have been, it's off the charts. And it's rare for a running back. And so, it's impressive and there's a reason why he's continued to excel out of the backfield the way he has."
What's something, I'm going back to Jameis (Winston), but what is something about him that you learned this season that you didn't know, just watching him from afar?
"I'm not sure. I've known Jameis (Winston) now for some years, dating all the way back to 2015. So, I knew the kind of guy he was. And I've always known the player he was, just watching him. But, I think, what I realized is him playing and being on our team now is, he's going to be consistent, he's going to be the guy that he is that you've seen with Tampa Bay, that we see in the locker room, full of energy, full of passion, loves the game, loves having fun. And I would say, just now being with him, and playing with him, alongside of him. I see that now. As opposed to observing from a distance before."
Kind of going off of that, Jameis' (Winston) attitude. Is he one of those guys that not only brings that great energy to the locker room, but also can have guys focus up quickly, where maybe he can be like a good quarterback based on his attitude in times of crisis, I guess. Does that make sense? Like, when (Drew) Brees went out in that second half is he kind of a calming source in any way?
"Definitely. His confidence is through the roof. And so, when you have a guy that comes in and has all the confidence in the world in himself and what we are going to go out there and accomplish. Then obviously, everyone in that huddle, they feed off that. So, I think that's important. And so, yeah, I think his confidence speaks for itself, when he's out there and in the locker room."
Regarding Deion Jones, what are your thoughts on the way he plays and also his ability to maybe guard running backs, whether it be you or Alvin (Kamara) in the passing game?
"Yeah, he is a heck of an athlete. High motor guy, runs the field well. And he has done it now for a long time at that position. So, (I have) a lot of respect for him and his motor and the way he is able to make plays on, side to side on the field. So, it will be a challenge, obviously, to try and eliminate him from making those big plays that he has consistently made."
Sean Payton has mentioned a number of times with Alvin Kamara that he has like a rare, unique intelligence among all of the running backs he's coached. First of all, is that something you agree with? And if so, where does he demonstrate that and show that?
"I think, yes. He does have a rare intelligence. Because, again, when you ask a running back to play multiple positions, there's a risk of things going wrong. There is a risk of a running back not knowing what to do. But, with Alvin that's not the case and so, not only does he know what to do, where to line up, when you have him out of the backfield, but then, he also has the ability to catch the ball, and that just makes him that much more dangerous. So, yeah, he is intelligent, because he knows what they ask of him. But then Alvin (Kamara) as a player, can go out there and execute what they're asking him to do. And that makes him really, really dangerous. And as we've all seen this year, he's been hard to stop."