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Transcript: New Orleans Saints Coach Sean Payton training camp interview - Sunday, Aug. 23

Payton spoke with media on hurricanes, Saints improvements at quarterback at Saints Training Camp 2020

New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton
Training Camp Video Call with New Orleans Media
Sunday, August 23, 2020

Have you guys made a plan I guess whether or not you have to move or when would that definitive Plan B be implemented if it has to be?
"When I finish talking with you guys here, we're going to meet, receive an update relative to both of these storms, and then begin to put a plan together. Whether it's here, or at a satellite location. Here, we've just got to look closely where generators are, how it affects our facility, how it affects the indoor facility, when would the Superdome be ready with their turf surface. So really two options, one obviously being here and how are we impacted here potentially with power outages? And then two, in the event that we would want to move or have to move, Plan B."

Obviously, you have players from all over the country, maybe they've never been through this or experienced this, do you just tell them what to expect, what to do and how to prepare in some way just from kind of a human standpoint?
"Yeah, look, I met briefly with him after practice, and told him that by the time we're back here for the walkthrough again in the PM we'll have a little bit more information and at that time, to your point, how we want to handle this not only as a team, but for the extended members."

Were (Alvin) Kamara and (Ryan) Ramczyk getting rest days today?
"Yeah, Ramczyk was and Alvin had a little stomach virus. He'll be fine."

Drew (Brees) talked leading up to camp a lot about what he did in the offseason to improve his arm strength, especially to be able to hit deep balls better. I know it's only been a week, but have you seen any evidence of that yet?
"Yeah, there been a couple instances where it came out with the rotation you're looking for and one of the things that he does a great job of every offseason is really looking closely at his own game and how he can make subtle adjustments and improvements. Tom (House), who he works with is outstanding relative to just the specifics with the throwing motion and creating power and how it's done. Obviously, you guys know this, it all starts from the ground through the legs up. It's not necessarily an arm thing as much as it is a transition into creating power and leverage with your lower body through the ground and into the throwing motion. But yeah, I have seen a couple good instances that he's worked on it."

*I saw (Cesar) Ruiz got some snaps at center today. What did you like out of his time there? *"Well, look, we'll look at the film. So I haven't seen it yet, but our plan was every second or third day make a flip there. There were a couple snaps today relative to the run game that he can clean up, shotgun snaps, but we will look at the film and take a peek at it. So we wanted to do that both with he and Erik (McCoy) and both of them are smart enough and good enough players where they can handle a switch like that during a couple day stretch."

*How much of your success do you kind of attribute to, I guess being in sync with Mickey (Loomis) in the front office for all these years? *"Well, look, I think that has a lot to do with it. I think one of the challenges in pro sports, not just football, but pick a sport, is having that functionality, if you will. I've said this before, I think that not picking or looking at any specific team in any sport, but the first step in having a chance to be successful and know it's difficult to do that is being able to functionally operate and lead the correct way. That starts with our owner, president, our general manager, our head coach. Those functions and or those dysfunctions can really allow a team a chance to be successful or prevent a team from being successful. So I would say it matters greatly."

*How important is it for all three quarterbacks to make the cadence sound exact? What's that process like just for them to get on the same page? *"Well, it is important. The process is pretty simple. It's right now the other two sound like Drew (Brees). And then when he leaves someday, it's going to be the others sound like whoever the starter is, because there are some nuances. There are a lot of similarities around the league relative to how a cadence is delivered, but the specifics regarding the voice and the inflection and the timing can vary some. The very early meetings in training camp or minicamp or OTAs, we'll have everyone in the room and Drew will give the cadence and then we'll clap on the get off. Then then all of a sudden Taysom (Hill) then Jameis (Winston), when you're not hearing the claps in sync and there's maybe a discrepancy there, you know that's something that you have to clean up. I do think it's important. I do think it's the first advantage an offense has is understanding when the play starts and the defense does not have that necessarily. And so I think that it's trying to very quickly sound like how Drew's delivering the cadence from a timing standpoint, not necessarily the strength of your voice, but the timing of it."

I would assume you saw some of the qualities in Malcolm Jenkins at a young age, because he was a captain so early and he was doing a lot of community things off the field so early. Are you not surprised at what a visible sort of activist he's become and how much do you value just the makeup of his character and that kind of stuff he's doing even off the field?
"Yeah, all the above. From the day we drafted him and he came in here as a rookie and played in the nickel, you saw toughness, grit. He's a tremendous worker, tireless guy that would study the tape long after everyone was gone he'd be in the defensive back room watching film. And so when you combine his leadership, his work ethic and then his skill set, because he's an extremely talented athlete, you end up getting a player who's played as long as he has and had the success that he's had. So yeah, I'm glad he's back in our building and he'll be important to our success."

There are a couple of testing hiccups across the league. Have you been okay with how the testing has worked here? We have not talked about it in a couple of days. I think that's got to be a positive right?
"Yeah, I think. Every morning Beau (Lowery) gets up early. He looks at his email and then when I wake up I look at my email and no news is good news. I think we've had basically three positive tests that were false positives from our players and to be at this at this stage of preseason, training camp, obviously you don't want to relax or take it for granted, but if you told me that we were going to be basically COVID clean as a team, this this stage of our training camp, I think that's a little surprising and in a good way."

You get Taysom Hill back today after a couple of missed practices, just your thoughts on his addition off the field and how he worked back into it today?
"I'm sure his last 48 hours he probably didn't receive a lot of sleep. Today's his birthday as well. I told him today, I said, 'Listen, you're practicing a little bit like you delivered the baby, but it was your wife.' So there'll be some film for him to clean up some things, but it was good to have him back out there."

*First baby for him, did you give him any advice? *"Well, it's simple. The No. 1 thing is, and it changes, is just sleep, but he's excited. We're excited for him. He and his wife both I'm sure are thrilled to death and anxious to get everyone home."

*Is Jameis Winston's mobility about where you thought it would be? Is it maybe even better since he's lost the weight this offseason? *"He made a few plays in the red zone today. He can he can climb in the pocket. I'd say he's got fairly quick feet. Yeah, I'm pleased with how he's progressed. He had a good practice today. A very good practice."

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