Linebackers Coach Bill McGovern
June 7, 2017
Q: What do you think of B.J. Goodson?
A: I think he, like everybody has kind of has noticed, he just seemed a little bit more comfortable being in the system another year being around it. You see him more comfortable gaining more confidence as he continues to get more and more reps in practice.
Q: What do you think the biggest thing is that you need to see more out of him for?
A: Well I think itís like everybody. Itís the second year in the system really for a good number of these guys, third for some, but itís understanding the little nuances that go into it, getting total command of it. For B.J., in particular he is doing a great job in terms of preparing the night before, being ready when he comes in the morning but there is no substitution for reps.
Q: Whatís his skill set look like in your eyes?
A: He has a really good skill set. He looks like he will be good in the run, but again, without pads on right now, weíre moving around but itís not anything that is going to be real definitive right now, but he is a guy that looks like he can tackle, weíve seen on tape that he can tackle. He moves well. It looks like he is moving better in the pass but again you always move better once you always have a better understanding of how you fit in this scheme.
Q: How does the scheme fit for what he does? Youíve seen his skills last year.
A: Itís Spagsí (Steve Spagnuolo) scheme and it kind of takes advantage of everybody and what they do well and tries to gives guys a chance to make plays. So again, the mike linebacker position is one that has got to control our defense, make some calls, make some checks, get us lined up, and let us play.
Q: How is J.T. Thomas doing? What have you seen of him or have you seen him much?
A: He is in all the meetings and everything else. He is great. You know, he is into it and all of that stuff, but again we havenít seen him on the field. I have seen him working with the trainers and everything else. What his actual status is you would have to ask them. I donít know. He has been in all the meetings and doing everything we have asked otherwise.
Q: How pleased were you to get Keenan (Robinson) back and how do you see his role expanding this year?
A: Well one of those things that I think Spags does a great job of is seeing what guys do well and putting them in a position to have success. I think Keenan, in particular in our sub-package really was a positive for us in terms of coverage. He has length, he has size, and he has athleticism so he was a real positive. Hopefully, again we will continue to expand his role in that.
Q: I guess Devon Kennard, last year it seemed that his snaps were limited early in the year. Do you see an expanded role for him? My question would be his health. How much was that a factor last year with his workload?
A: I think it was kind of learning, again, more about DK and DK kept taking on more and more responsibility. Finding his skill set improved a little bit in that he has value rushing the passer and that he has value on first down, second down, and third down. It was one of those situations as we developed through the year we realized that he had more and more value and he has continued to work on it through the offseason and we are excited about where he is headed now.
Q: What did you think of your linebacker group when you went back and looked at it about how they performed last year?
A: There are always things to get better. You always want to see things where we can get better, what can we do and that is what we are looking to do right now here in the offseason. Weíre trying to get the guys more comfortable in the scheme and playing faster in it, taking advantage of some of the things that Spags gives them on defense so that we can get better a little bit there.
Q: In your eyes do you think they exceeded your expectation of what you were thinking going into last season? You didnít know a ton about them.
A: It was the first season with that group so it was really learning with them. It was the first season with that system so we learned about everything. So it was one of those things where there are always things to get better and thatís what we are looking to do to get better about where we go forward.
Q: What do you see about Calvin Munson?
A: Calvin is good. He is a young kid, another guy whoís a sharp kid who gets it, moves around fairly well. He is getting limited reps right now because he is learning it. You know, we are force-feeding it a little bit to the young guys so they are trying to learn as much as they can. But now, when we get a chance to get in pre-season camp that is where you really get a chance to see more, to give them a chance in the summer to kind of soak in it, to keep learning and get comfortable with it a little bit, like we were talking about the other guys getting a little more comfortable and coming back. When we can play with pads that is when you are going to find out, Ďokay, can they really goí.
Q: He rushed the passer a lot in college. Do you think that is something where his skill set will fit here and try to use him?
A: Itís one of those things you just try to find out about what guys do and then you try to give them a chance to do what they do best. We have got a number of guys we feel can get after the passer. Itís one of those things we want to fit him into what they do best. We hopefully have 4, 5, or 6 guys that can get after him.
Q: It wasnít a group that produced a lot of sacks last year. Do you think that was scheme related or personnel related? What do you make of that?
A: It was that we just didnít produce a lot of sacks. It was a little bit of everything, itís not because guys canít rush. We had guys coming in, there were guys that had pressures, and there were guys that had QB hits. But one of those situations again; we had guys up front that had really done a great job in putting pressures on a quarterback and hitting the quarterback. It didnít fault us but again it is something we could always be better at. It is something we are looking to improve on.