Saturday, July 28, 2018
How does it feel to put the pads on for the first day?
“It was a great day. Great energy out there, great enthusiasm. We started off fast on defense, but I always love to get the pads on and pop around the pads a little bit and just have fun with your guys out there.”
Is it always a good thing to see Drew Brees and maybe Coach (Payton) a little frustrated during practice?
“Sometimes. That means the defense is winning. We’re out there having fun, flying around, making plays around the ball, knocking passes down, intercepting the ball so it's always a good feeling to see that.”
How much fun is it for you defensive guys to put the pads on? I know you guys like to fly around and hit.
“For sure, but we have to take care of each other and take care of our teammates. It is always a good feeling to put the pads on, pop around, run around, have fun with each other, and tell them get up for the next play.”
Does it matter to you whether you start or just be on the field?
“I always want to be that guy, but we will let time tell.”
Why did you change your number?
“It’s a new chapter in my life. My mom and I talked about it. It had to be a biblical reason. It’s just a new chapter in my life and a new beginning.”
Has your role changed on the team let’s say versus playing alongside Kenny Vaccaro or has it changed from one year to the next?
“Right now, we’re just going out there and competing for the spot. Nothing really changes in our gameplan right now. We’re just going out here and competing, stacking days, getting better each week and each day with the unit as a whole. We just keep on getting better and competing at the spot, and we’re going to see who the best man is.”
How comfortable are you with this defense now?
“Very comfortable. I’ve been with Dennis Allen going on three years, Aaron Glenn, coach Pete (Giunta) and the same system. Very comfortable now. No minor adjustments. I have got some veteran moves that I can do now that I took from other guys in previous years. Very comfortable in this scheme. It’s great to out there and have fun with my guys.”
It's only been three practices, but to watch a rookie like Tre’quan Smith go out there and make all those catches, has he been impressive to you so far?
“Yes, but we don’t want him to catch any. He's a spectacular guy. He's putting his head down, grinding each day, and listening to what the coaches have to say to him, and just trying to get better.”
Is there anything you see that makes him special? I know he’s only been here for a little bit.
“It’s really early right now, so we’ll just have to see how the days go.”
Did you make the coaches run today?
“Yesterday they did for two turnovers. They were supposed to today because we got another two turnovers. Every time we get two turnovers they have to run half-gassers. Hold everybody accountable.”
Is this as deep a defense as you’ve seen since you’ve been here?
“I think so. With the positions, we keep on getting younger each year. There is great depth at each position and there is so much competition so you have to love it. Go out and have fun, we are always rotating. You never know who you are going to be with because we always split the groups up. We are always trying to see how everybody feels with each other. We’re just trying to get the right group.”
How is the rotation with the safety group? It looks like you guys could have three guys on the field at once?
Yes, you never know. Especially with the Buffalo sets with how we do the three safeties. You never know who is going to be a nickel, who is going to be a free, who is going to be a strong because we’re all safeties. We’re just not labeled as strong or free. We can all rotate, and all confuse the quarterback in that way by disguising our looks or realigning and how we roll and spin down. It’s all different.”
You guys were pretty good last year, how do you think you can improve and be better this season?
“We put last year behind us. We always step into a new day every day. We always step into a new step every day. We always put our front foot forward, just keep on going, just keep on building each day and each week.”