Top 10 Photos from Saints at Cardinals. Photos by Michael C. Hebert (New Orleans Saints photos)
Arizona Cardinals Cornerback Patrick Peterson
Conference Call With New Orleans Media
Wednesday, December 14, 2016
What is the overall reaction right now surrounding the news about Michael Floyd and what has happened with him?
"Definitely shock. It is an unfortunate situation. We definitely hope that Mike (Floyd) gets the help that he needs."
What kind of message do you think that is from coach (Bruce Arians) to the rest of the team?
"I can't really say it sends a message. Around here at the Arizona Cardinals we thrive off of three words – trust, loyalty and respect. Like I said, it's an unfortunate situation. Mike (Floyd) is still like a brother of ours. We just hope that he can find another situation and also like I said, get the help that he needs to make sure that he can have a long career after this mishap."
What have you seen from this Saints offense the last two weeks?
"Very explosive. Drew Brees is number one in the league, I believe, in passing and yards per game. These guys are very explosive, starting with him. In my opinion, he's definitely a first ballot hall of famer. He's been doing a lot of great things in his career. I believe he is the only quarterback to have 4,000 yards passing in 11-straight seasons. That is remarkable. The guy just continues to find a way to make everybody around him better. It definitely starts with him and Brandin Cooks who, in my opinion, is emerging to one of the top guys in this league. Mark Ingram (is) running the ball very well for them so they have a balanced attack right now. I believe they are averaging 109 yards rushing (per game). These guys are very explosive and we have to make sure that we pay attention to all our q's to make sure that we put ourselves in the best position."
It sounds like you don't think it's fair to take Drew Brees' zero touchdowns and six interceptions over his last two games in isolation; what have you seen that has led to that mini-trend?
"He is definitely getting the ball out quick out of his hands. One thing that Drew Brees does a very good job of is taking his shots when the defense allows him to take shots. These guys do a lot of great things on the offensive side of the ball. Drew Brees understands defense and how to look off safeties. He has obviously seen everything but we have to make sure that we give him a lot of different looks so that our coverage is not predictable so he'll know where to go with the ball right out of the gate. We have to make sure that we continue to give him different looks, and it's going to be hard to confuse him but try our best to confuse him as best as possible."
On video did he have the look of a quarterback who is struggling a little bit the past two weeks or do you see other factors involved?
"I can't really point out what is going on, why he isn't getting the ball in the end zone or why he is throwing interceptions. A couple of those interceptions were some dropped passes and a couple obviously were some ill-advised throws. The front is forcing him to make bad throws. We already know that Drew Brees is a short quarterback so defensive linemen force him to step up so that he can't see. It's a lot of things that can factor into why he is not getting the ball in the end zone and throwing interceptions. Like I said earlier, Drew Brees is a first ballot hall of famer. He understands how to get out of funks by him being in the league so long. I am quite sure that he understands to stick to the process and to stick to the script. Eventually, it'll turn for him. I hope that it doesn't turn for him against us on Sunday but I definitely wish him the best of luck."
Did you watch a lot of the Saints when you were at LSU?
"I wouldn't say I was a Saints fan but I did watch a ton of Saints football. That was actually the glory days of the Saints when those guys were just getting on that run. I believe they won the Super Bowl my sophomore year in '09. They went to the playoffs again in 2010 and I don't think they've been since or in a while. I definitely watched the Saints games when I was in school in Louisiana. It was fun to see the excitement of them winning and them bringing the excitement back in Louisiana by seeing those guys win and bringing their first Super Bowl back to New Orleans. To be a part of that was definitely remarkable. Just to see what winning brings to the city – it brings so much joy, it brings so much like a new energy. It was fun to be around and being in that state throughout the times that the Saints were really rolling."
Having Tyrann Mathieu, Kevin Minter and you together, what influence has that had on the defense there?
"I wouldn't say that it has had much of an influence. We've got guys that are obviously from Louisiana – Tyrann (Mathieu), Tharold (Simon) and like you said, me and Kevin (Minter) played there but it is not really much influence there. It might be for Tharold (Simon) and Tyrann (Mathieu), but for me and Kevin (Minter), we just want to go out there and do whatever we need to do to help our team win this ballgame. This game doesn't mean as much as it does to Tyrann (Mathieu) and those guys obviously with them growing up possibly being a Saints fan. It might mean more to them but for the most part, I am looking at it as another game."
How special is it for you watch David Johnson from the sideline and also on the field as well?
"It's an honor to watch David Johnson do some of the things that he's been doing to help us win ballgames, and just to see the way his career has taken off since last year. It is definitely remarkable. He has been working extremely hard since he got here. Now that he has the starting job, he's been doing nothing but great things for our offense. He's just so smooth. It just looks so effortless when he's out there running the ball making those violent jump cuts. It looks like he's running in slow motion but he's running past people. David Johnson is just a very special and unique football player. I am happy that we have him on our football team."
What are your reactions to the coaching changes at LSU?
"At the end of the day when your university's used to being at a certain position at the end of the year, used to playing for something at the end of the year and you do not have that over the last four or five years, you kind of see that as a failure. I believe LSU felt it was time for a change. Obviously, coach (Les) Miles was my recruiter. I love him very dearly but the university felt that it was time for a change and that it had to go in a new direction. That is what they did. I think it was a great hire. I think coach Ed (Orgeron) would get some great recruits in there. He has a great resume of recruiting guys, quality guys and NFL guys. That is what we always have. I believe that he will definitely keep the rich tradition as far as putting the most guys in the NFL coming from LSU. I think he'll definitely keep that up while he is the head coach there."
Are there any coverages that have more success against Drew Brees?
"Probably like a 56 coverage. The quarter-quarter halves. That tends to I would not say give him problems, but it gives him a different look. He does not see that very often in defenses. Quarter-quarter half is definitely something that, not only does it confuse him, but it can confuse a lot of quarterbacks because it's a great changeup call. You just never know which side is going to be that quarter side. Which side is going to be the coverage two side because it all looks the same. I believe that is one of the coverages that I've seen him have a couple issues with throughout the season. Can't show it to him too many times. You always have to give him a changeup. That is one of the changeups that I believe that can give him a hard time."
What do you see any differences in the Saints offense this year?
"The biggest change I would say is they're probably taking more shots down the field, but for the most part their offense is the same. They're definitely running the ball a little bit more than they usually have over the last couple times we played them, but for the most part they still have that same identity. Brees is taking more shots than he typically does in ballgames and their running the ball a little bit more. But for the most part they're still getting the ball out quick. Still going to spread you out, still going to hit you with screens. Their still doing their meat of their offense it's just I believe they're taking more shots this year than they did in the previous years."