CB Prince Amukamara
July 30, 2015
Q: So Victor just gave you a Doctor’s degree— he says your assessment is right on.
A: Oh, really?
Q: Yeah, he says he’s running as fast as ever.
A: Yeah, I trust my eye. We were just out there in Arizona at a performance spot and he came out there for a day and ran a couple routes with Kap and Tyrod Taylor, and I told him you look faster than before— it could be because I haven’t seen him on the field in awhile, but he looked great.
Q: When you guys work in practice, you’re going to be up against him sometimes — are there special instructions that you have or are you going to purposely try to give him a hard time on certain routes to push him and get him [Victor Cruz] back to where he needs to be?
A: Anytime someone is on the field, I definitely have to treat them as if they’re 100 percent unless they have the same color jersey as Eli, which means you can’t really touch him. Or if Victor says, “Hey Prince, chill out” and stuff like that— then yeah— but as long as the tempo is 100 percent, I’m going to give 100 percent.
Q: A lot of people look at this team and look at the offense and the wide receivers and say they’re going to put up points— do you feel that the defense can hold up its end here for the season and get the team where it wants to be?
A: That’s definitely our goal. I can’t give a great assessment right now because we haven’t played anybody and haven’t even played a preseason game yet, but I would say in OTAs and minicamp, I felt as if we were headed that way.
Q: Last year, the big play was kind of a problem for you guys— did you go back and look at that and ask yourself if it was a communication issue? Was it too many people rotating in and out due to injuries? What do you think was the problem and have you guys addressed it?
A: I’d say that there can be many reasons for why the big play happens— a couple of times, I think it was a communication issue, and there were a couple of times where that guy gets paid, too, and that guy just made a play on someone on our defense. The only thing that we can control is our effort and getting on the right page. Every year it seems as if we’ve had a communication problem, so our goal is to limit that this season.
Q: Speaking of getting on the same page, there is a possibility that you might have two rookie safeties playing with you and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. Does that change the level of responsibility that you have? Do you need to communicate more? What, if anything, changes?
A: It just all depends— if it is two rookies, I think it just depends on what they show us. If they show us that they can handle it and they don’t need us to talk to them a lot, then we’ll adjust. But I would say that Coach Spags knows the type of personnel he has to work with, and you do have two veteran cornerbacks who are pretty good, so he might try to lock me and DRC up so there’s not a lot of pressure on those guys, but we don’t really know yet.
Q: How do you overcome the injury to JPP?
A: How do I overcome it?
Q: How does the team or the defense overcome it?
A: It’s tough— it just hit me— we’re going into camp without our cornerstone guy. It’s almost similar to going into camp without Eli. It’s definitely tough, and especially when you look at it like that. But there’s not much you can do besides support him and just wait for his homecoming.
Q: Is it harder that nobody really knows what’s going on with him? This isn’t just a contractual holdout— you don’t know what’s going on with him— does that make it more difficult?
A: Not really, because as long as I know that he’s healthy— which I do know— and I mean healthy as in he’s good and he’s discharged from the hospital and that his health is not an issue… then I can’t be too worried. Him coming back or anything like that, I can’t really worry about because I can’t really control that. That’s the GM and the owner’s job to worry about. Not mine.
Q: Do you know of any players that have talked to him? I know a lot of guys have reached out to him, but do you know anyone that has actually reached him? Have you?
A: Definitely have texted him. Definitely have reached out to him… and I don’t know anybody else who has. And if I did, I don’t think I would tell you that.
Q: Your owner says that he still thinks that whether the JPP thing works out or not that there is enough talent on this team to compete for a Super Bowl and win a Super Bowl. Do you share that feeling?
A: For sure. I think there’s been many cases in the past, and especially here, where the next guy has to step up and we have Damontré, we have Selvie, we have Robert Ayers— and I think that all three of those guys are capable of getting the job done to the level of how JPP can do it. We’re unsure and we’re going to find out if that’s the case, but I would agree with our owner that we definitely do have the talent.