Secondary/Cornerbacks Coach Tim Walton
September 22, 2017
Q: How much does it impact you if (Janoris) Jenkins canít play on Sunday?
A: A lot. Anytime you are missing a good player of his caliber, it affects you a little bit. He has the ability to take out some number one guys. So, it always hurts when you lose a guy like that.
Q: Do you think youíll have him Sunday?
A: Itís going to be a game-time decision. Letís see how it goes tomorrow and see what he is able to do. See how he feels and kind of play it by ear from there.
Q: Is he a tough guy?
A: Very tough. Very, very tough. If he is able to do it, he will be able to go.
Q: Is it different than last week? Did you have to change the game plan on the fly last week?
A: Injuries all work different kind of ways. Heís a tough guy with it. So, we are going to see how he does tomorrow and see how he feels and what kind of load he can handle on it and see if he can go.
Q: How much did he want to go last week?
A: Yeah, he wanted to, but it was bothering him to a point where certain stuff was irritating him. So, it was hard to come out and play.
Q: So, he kind of knew the reality?
A: Yeah, we do a lot of change of directions on the back end so planting and cutting is a big deal.
Q: What have been your thoughts on Darian Thompson so far?
A: Darianís been solid. Right now, I think as a whole back end group, we want to play better overall, period. We have a standard that we try to set with all of the guys. Heís been solid so far, but as a group we need to try to play dominant football. Thatís out goal.
Q: How do you balance DRCís (Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie) workload? Heís a veteran guy so you want to keep him fresh for later in the season, but you also need him now.
A: You know, you just got to go game-by-game with it. If we get in a certain situation where we get in more base or more zebra, we can try to get a few plays out of him that we can spell him here and there. But right now we are trying to win and heís ready, heís in good shape and we need him. He does a lot for us back there. Heís been good with it and heís been playing well so Iíve been pleased with his performance so far.
Q: Ross (Cockrell) has been here two weeks and heís jumped ahead of Michael Hunter. What makes you think he was ready for that?
A: He has experience. He played a little while in this league, four years in the league so far. Smart guy, heís very consciousness, he picks up stuff fast and goes about his business in the right way. Heís played a little bit so Iím proud of him so far in the way heís stepped up the first couple weeks heís been here.
Q: Darian Thompson has a reputation of being a ball hawk, but he made one play last week where he came up on (Ameer) Abdullah that was very impressive. Is that film study combined with instincts and physical ability?
A: He plays good with his eyes. He plays good with his eyes and thatís one of the most important traits a guy can have. Itís really overlooked, but he does a lot of film study. He is very smart also. Heís a guy that is very sharp above the neck. So, he is able to pick up tips and things like that and he made a good play. So, heís smart though. He knows how to diagnose stuff pretty good.
Q: Last year it seemed like whenever Eli (Apple) gave up a big play, more bad plays would follow. Have you seen that again this year?
A: Heís fine. He didnít judge the ball well on a third down on the touchdown the other night, but he responds well. You have to have amnesia in this league. If you play enough, they are going to catch balls on you. Thatís the thing we have to preach to those guys, all of them back there. At some point and time, our best players are going to give up a pass, itís how you bounce back and heís been doing a good job of that. Of those 60-70 plays, he plays a lot of really good plays. Like I said, we just have to try to correct the few that show up that we need to do better at and heíll do that. But heís been doing a solid job for us and his mind is in the right spot with being able to move on to the next play.
Q: Where do you see him being in his progression?
A: Heís doing well. He gave up one pass the other night. Some people donít really know our defense and what goes on. So, he gave up the one the other night and he needs to find the ball. Then on the Dallas play, he needs to squeeze him, but there is a little more that goes into that on that play. But heís doing good. Those were two plays that he needs to play better, but other than that heís been playing pretty well. Plus, a guy like that, he plays 70 snaps, he plays an entire game, all of them. So, when you start adding it up, heís got 140 snaps under him so thatís a lot more. Some of those guys play a lot more than a lot of guys so heís just got to make sure the ones that count, he makes. So, heíll improve with it and be better with it.
Q: Is it tough because you have an offense that canít score so you guys have to almost be perfect?
A: Nah, we just got to keep going and play our part. Theyíll do great. Theyíll get their stuff going. We just have to stop them. Our goal is to stop them. So, thatís what I talked to Eli about. You got to make those plays because thatís our job. Itís our job to make plays. So, thatís what we were supposed to do. We are supposed to stop guys from scoring. Thatís our mentality. We have guys that do it and we have to get that done on a consistent basis, not let them score.
Q: What does Michael Hunter have to do to instill confidence in you?
A: Michael is doing a solid job. Heís just got to keep growing. It all depends what the offense is doing and what we are seeing as far as what those guys role. Everyone has a role. So, heíll be ready. He got a couple snaps in the Dallas game, one or two snaps this past game, but just keep practicing and keep doing the right things and when his opportunity comes, be ready. Thatís the thing. Opportunities jump up before you know it and you just have to be prepared for them. Heís doing that and I think heíll be ready when the opportunity presents itself.
Q: Does the teamís record impact how you prepare?
A: No. No, every given Sunday man. You got good teams you play every week, you play good players every week, we have to go out and win each game. So, we prepare the same every week knowing that youíre going up against a good quarterback, that youíre going up against a good running back, good wide outs, and our job is to win games and stop the other team from scoring. So, our approach is the same every week.
Q: What have you seen from that three-safety package you have been using?
A: Itís fine. You sprinkle it in some. We just to get the right guys in the right place against the right personnel group because it is a matchup league. So, we are just trying to matchup the right things. Andrew Adams, Darian, and Landon (Collins), those guys are all good players too, so we are just trying to put them in the right situation for them to have success.