Assistant Defensive Backs Coach Deshea Townsend
April 4, 2018
Q: Do you feel like you have enough defensive backs here?
A: Yeah, weíre just starting that process. [Head] Coach [Pat [Shurmur], theyíll do a good job of getting what we need in the room. But the one thing that weíll have to have is the mindset that weíre going to compete.
Q: How much does it help having played in the NFL for as long as you did?
A: I think it just gives them another side of perspective of what it takes to be a pro. Thatís one thing that I always share with the guys, is what it took for me to make it this long. But also, give them some insight on what is going to happen to them on the field. If I can help you from making the pitfall or the mistake that I made, thatís my job. And I think being a player, it gives me a little insight to help them.
Q: Have you been able to talk to cornerback Eli Apple about off the field things?
A: Well, you know, for him we havenít really had the opportunity to sit down and do all that. But, my job as a coach is to be as transparent with my guys as I can. Like I said, whatever mistake I made, my job is to make sure they donít make it. And if I can help you be a better pro, I can only give you what helped me. And thatís the thing about our unit Ė weíre going to be one, weíre going to be close, but weíre going to work. That has to be the mindset of our room.
Q: When you look at the off the field issues of the defensive backs from season, how do you go about getting them to be together and close?
A: Well, the good thing is itís a new year and the mindset of Coach Shurmur, of Coach Bettcher, is weíre going to be a unit. We can only get it done when we get to work, when we get out here on the field and we start to talk about our message, start to talk about what it takes for the Giants to be successful and thatís what weíll do.
Q: Do you think your playing experience will help get that message across?
A: Well, the one thing we know, itíll be said. The one thing I know from the groups that Iíve played in, the good defenses that Iíve been on, the good units that you see in the NFL, itís only done one way. Itís done right. If itís not right, itís wrong and that has to be the message we have to have in the building.
Q: From a talent perspective, what do you see in Eli Apple?
A: Well, you know, thereís a reason you went in the first round. Heís a big guy, he can run, heíll tackle and thatís the thing it takes to be a good corner, if you can get close in coverage. Everybody, every day, the one thing you can always control is your technique. Weíll work that daily. Tackling, youíll work that. But he has God-given ability that most people donít have. Heís 6í1Ē, runs a 4.4 and heíll hit you. So, thatís something good to work with.
Q: What is your initial impression of cornerback Janoris Jenkins?
A: I love him. Same thing. Those guys, theyíre professional corners. Theyíve got a skillset that most people donít have. They can cover. For him, he can get really sticky, he can piece. And thatís the one thing that you love to see when you watch him on tape. You love the way that he goes out and he applies himself, heís emotional. The life of a corner is different. We have to have a different mentality out there than most people have and he has it.
Q: What will you tell these cornerbacks about blitzing and coaching them up there?
A: Well, the one thing Iíve always believed is, when you do get the opportunity to blitz, think about what it feels like when youíre covering. So, that has to be your mindset. Think about the other guys out there with their life on the line, to say. But, think about it when youíre going in there, with your attack, your plan that you have, to go to the quarterback. And thatís the urgency that you have to have. Your brothers holding on back there for as long as they can, letís go get the quarterback.
Q: Why was Curtis Riley a guy that you wanted?
A: Well for one, heís a guy that, he has some NFL experience. Heís a smart guy. Heíll be able to pick up the defense, heíll be able to line some guys up and he has some athletic ability. I think heís a good player, heís a player thatís played in the NFL and heíll be a good pickup for us.