Transcript: Sean Payton Minicamp Media Availability 6-12-19

New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton
2019 Minicamp Presented By Verizon
Post-Practice Media Availability
Wednesday, June 12, 2019

It seems that Vince Biegel has been getting some work on the edge. What do you like about him?
"His natural position is linebacker. There's certain defensive looks where we'll stand one of those linebackers to an open side or closed side. Part of it's more of the defensive call. So I would say that part of it, what we're doing from a scheme standpoint and it's not specific to him. His exposure to us last year playing and having snaps in the kicking game and a guy that knows what to do with the three positions is important. A lot of it had to do with really the install.”

When you guys drafted David Onyemata who is still relatively new to football, how's he grown?
“Quite a bit. We felt he would. The East-West (Shrine) game, it was really something that helped us. He had a good week there. I think he was Player of the Game. He's a hard worker and he has, I would say, really good natural strength. And so the amount of snaps he's receiving now and I'd say the transition with each mistake early in his career, very quickly he's corrected (that) and is playing extremely well.”

Your first impression of Rishard Matthews, bringing him on board and giving him an opportunity.
“Today he did some good things. He's smart, so he has some experience. It's a chance for us to see him and see how he handles what we are doing from an install standpoint. I think he catches it well. I would say it's really a two-practice evaluation. It has been pretty good.”

Knowing Drew (Brees) how we all know him, I’m sure it was tough for him to miss practice yesterday. (Was it) good to have him back out there?
“Absolutely. He got in last night, shot me a text. He had a good practice. He's someone that's obviously going to work extremely hard on what we're doing. They'll have times during this summer where these guys would get together and throw, but it was good to have him back out there today as a play-caller.”

When you signed Jared Cook you said you liked lining him up opposite of Michael (Thomas). As a play-caller, (can you) explain what he does on the opposite side?
“Typically the X receiver where Mike plays, not always, but typically, it's opposite the tight end. So the coverage roles, then it's advantageous or there's some good looks over there to the tight end side so we will put them in some different spots. He is someone who has a unique skillset and so you can flex him out of receiver playing closer to the ball. It really depends on what we're trying to do."

Looking at the quarterback-center exchange I know it’s unacceptable (to fumble). (Talk about) two out of three plays with Brees and Erik McCoy.
“We'll get that squared away. Yeah, we'll get that squared away. Both of those two, we'll figure it out.”

When you talk to Marcus Davenport it seems like he’s never content, even after a good game. Do you like that quality in him that he is always trying to improve and get better?
“There were a handful of games last year where he played extremely well. He battled an injury and now he's healthy. So I think he's eager to continue to make those steps that you typically make between year one, year two and year three. So we're excited to have him back out there (at) full strength.”

Did Carl Granderson do anything in particular early?
“It's hard. He's receiving reps. We think he's a pretty good rusher. We think he's got a chance to be a pressure player and I think he'll be one of those players that we'll get a much better feel for once in pads.”

So when you're going through these installs and everything, do you have a tried and true thing that you stick to? Or do you kind of evaluate this every year and see if maybe there are changes needed?
“Well, there's some change each year and then yet there's some, situationally, the third down comes typically on that third day, then two minutes, then the red zone. There are certain (periods done on different days). Now within the framework of what we're doing, we tinker some with (what we are doing). It's not the same as it was in ‘07 or ‘11 and yet there probably are some core principles that remain the same. But there's an install pattern relative to the situation in the games.” 

Getting a healthy Patrick Robinson back this season. How much does that feel like maybe a big free agent again?
“Yes. He's someone that is smart. He's played really well in the slot, he had a play today that was impressive. So yes, it's another addition really to our roster based on the injury."

Your conversations with him, just how tough that was. Such a great season in Philly and then coming here?
“Yes, that's always the difficult conversation when a player has an injury that's going to put them down for a season. it's one of the hard things about our game."

On the flip side of that, is P.J. (Williams) going to be pretty hard to unseat in that nickel role?                                                                                                               
“He played well. Chauncey (Gardner-Johnson) is someone that is going to receive work there. We have some depth there which is good and (we have) guys that can play not only inside, but outside.”

You didn't draft a wide receiver, this year? Do you feel pretty comfortable about the guys you have?
“Yes. I think there's some young guys too that are new that we're positive with and excited to work with. So we'll continue to evaluate that position. I liked the group right now and the guys that are here working now.”

One last point on Jared (Cook), he’s been in the league for 10 years, what does he bring to the locker room as far as energy and presence?
“I think number one, he has a calming personality. He's smart, he's competitive. I think he's a good teammate. I think that experience and being in a handful of different offenses that you see him catch a ball naturally, get open in the zones. So he's got some savvy on the field relative to what we're doing. And I think (he’s) a guy that the players quickly warm up to.”

What do you guys like in Kayvon Webster, to bring him in?
“Again, as we go through this process, we're looking at certain traits. And so I think we're probably seven over our 90 number, but enough to where we wanted to see in three days, again, is there, is there anything we're missing? Typically when we finish up here, we'll talk about every one of those guys that concluded.”

The center position was a question going into the offseason, how has Erick McCoy stepped into that role?
“He's doing well. There are three guys working there. We will continue to do that in training camp. It's hard to evaluate some of these positions without the pads on, but he was taking a lot of the reps from the ones today. He's doing well."

The starting linebackers have all arrived in the last two years having a little more stability, has that helped? 
“I think so, and I think we feel like we have pretty good depth there. Guys like Craig (Robertson) who's played a lot of snaps for us. One of them (Demario Davis and A.J. Klein) came via free agency, the other one came via the draft (Alex Anzalone. It has been a position, I thought we played better at a year ago than recently. So that is encouraging.”

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