Saints quotebook: CB Marshon Lattimore (August 15, 2018)

Reigning Defensive Rookie of the Year expects to be "much better" this season

New Orleans Saints Cornerback Marshon Lattimore

August 15, 2018

How do you look at a preseason game?

“A preseason game is just an extension of practice. It’s a game. It counts, but it’s just an extension of what we’re doing in practice. We try to go out there and just get better against an opposing team rather than just going against our offense. We’re just trying to see where we’re at, what level are we on when we’re going against another team. That’s really what we’re trying to see.”

Are you even more excited about two or three days of practice against Keenan Allen of the Chargers?

“Yes. I love the competition. He is a great receiver and I have a lot of respect for him as a player. Just getting the competition, I’m up for it. I want to do it of course.”

Do you talk to Marcus Davenport at all? I know last year you had some injuries and some ups and downs and now he’s obviously dealing with a similar situation with the expectations of being of first round draft pick. Do you pull him aside and talk to him about it?

“I have not talked to him about it yet. I have not seen him that much because he has been injured. I’ll definitely talk to him about it. Just the pressures of coming in and you have to be the guy because they picked you in the first round and everybody wants to see you be that guy. I’ll definitely talk to him and tell him to play your game and be you. There is nothing special to it. You just have to go out there and be a dog.”

You mentioned the competition level. Is that really what brings out the best in you?

“Yes. I like competition. I like going against opposing offenses and receivers to see where I am at versus somebody else other than Mike (Thomas) and Ted (Ginn Jr.) and our offense. It counts to make you better, but you know it doesn’t count as far as going against another player in a game. I just love that competition. Two-minute, I love going out there against our team and doing two-minute. I try to end it every time.”

Are there periods where it is hard to get that competition up when it gets a little monotonous?

“It is, but that is just me. I have to be in there more as an individual and get it going on my own. I cannot just come out here on my own and just slack during practice. I have to give it my all all the time. That is hard to do sometimes, but I just have to push through it and do it.”

A.G. (Aaron Glenn) was saying yesterday he has you working with different techniques. What is some of the stuff that you’ve been working on?

“I can’t give it out. That’s the secret sauce.”

As you’re working on stuff, is it deeper than if you give up a catch it might be because you’re working on a technique or it’s not as simple as saying Marshon get beat here?

“The media are going to try to say, someone catches a pass (it is my fault). They do not really know what’s going on. Just trying new things and seeing if they work for me, things like that. I’m still playing at a high level and feel like I can play at a high level. I’m not really worried about what the media is talking about.”

Your relationship with Justin Hardee, he said a few minutes ago you give him a lot of tough love. Is that your role with him?

“Yes, it is. Of course, because he wants to be a great player. He hasn’t (played) defensive back since high school when he played safety, but it’s high school. This is really his first year actually trying to play defensive back. I’m going to have to tell him what it is. I’ll have to tell him when he’s doing poorly and when he’s doing well. You have to give him praise and you have to tell him. You can’t sugarcoat it. If you want him to be great, you can’t sugarcoat it. I’ll tell him ‘that wasn’t it. That was a bad rep. You have to move your feet.’ Just things like that to make him better.”

How is he doing with that?

“He is doing great. I told him today he looked like an All-Pro corner out there on one rep he did. I’ll tell him when he’s doing good, but I’ll also tell him when he’s doing bad. That’s just the relationship we have.”

He said you guys worked together in the offseason and one of the things he was trying to get better at was his bump at the line of scrimmage. Is that something you guys worked on together?

“Yes. We worked on it. Just moving his feet at the line. He has these long arms and he can get his hands on people so we were just working on his feet. That’s really it. Once he gets that down pat he’s going to be a great player.”

Patrick Robinson told us the other day that there aren’t many guys who can flip the switch and turn it on during the game, but you’re one of those guys. How much practice or training camp reps do you need before you feel like you’re ready to go?

“I’m ready now. Training Camp is so long. We just work day in and day out. I’m just trying to get better going against our receivers like Ted (Ginn Jr.), Cam (Meredith), Tre’quan (Smith), Mike (Thomas), all those great guys that we got. Just going against them every day and getting better so I can be the best going against the competition. That’s something I look forward to every day.”

How much better do you think you are from a year ago?

“Mentally I’m way better. I know a lot more stuff than last year. Last year I was just thrown in the fire and I didn’t really know too much so I learned on the go. Now going into it, I’m going to know more. That’s really the big step I’ve had from last year to this year.”

Would it be fair to say last year was more you relying on natural ability?

“I told everybody that. Even AG (Aaron Glenn) knows I was going off instincts. I knew some things while I was going, but it was really just more instincts than anything.”

So that ceiling is still high?

“I’m not in my prime yet. I’m going to be much better than I was last year.”

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