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Thursday Media Transcript: ST Coordinator Thomas McGaughey

Eric from BBI : Admin : 9/6/2018 2:24 pm
Special Teams Coordinator Thomas McGaughey
September 6, 2018

Q: How do all the roster changes affect you?
A: It is what it is. Obviously, it affects you directly. You just got to make due with what you got. You get them up to speed as fast as you can, and just make sure that theyíre ready for game day, everything is detailed out for them. Just go out there and play fast. Keep it simple, nothing big, just keep it simple.

Q: Where has (K Aldrick Rosas) grown the most since last year? Have you changed anything with him?
A: More mental than anything. He has a ton of talent. In his mind, he has to have confidence into himself, and just be able to repeat the same process, tedious process over and over again Ė in his mind as far as being able to take some steps back, see the target, and just relax and swing through the ball. Heís just one year out. Heís getting better.

Q: Did you make any changes to his kicking routine due to his long stride?
A: Itís always something that you got to do with kickers. Itís always just a minor adjustment here or there. Heís done a good job of adjusting, shortening his jab, so he can be more consistent.

Q: How are you health-wise?
A: This past offseason, they found a growth in my bowel duct. In that growth was cancer. They removed it. I had a very extensive procedure, called a whipple procedure. During the whipple, they found a cancer in one of my lymph nodes. Iíve been doing chemotherapy for about the last two months. Iím going on my fifth treatment, and itís going good.

Q: (GM) Dave Gettlemen is going through chemotherapy as well. Has this made you two even closer than before?
A: It helps. We share our chemotherapy stories and talking about the medications and all that stuff. We definitely have our conversations. Dave is a great man. It is what it is. We just got to fight through it and keep moving.

Q: Do you have it under control? Are you still going through treatments?
A: I have a couple more treatments left. It is what it is.

Q: Have you had any scans yet to see where you are with it?
A: I had a scan, it was in Hackensack, three weeks ago. It was fine.

Q: How do you balance work and your health? Is it something thatís going to be time consuming for you?
A: I go down, I do my treatment, I come back. Thatís what it is. Last time I did it, I had an extra day because it was the fourth preseason game. So, I had a little time. The next treatment, Iíll go down, do the treatment, then Iíll come right back.

Q: If Coach Shurmur came to you today and said he wants Saquon (Barkley) to do kick returns, and Odell (Beckham Jr.) to do punt returns, your response would beÖ.?
A: Thank God (smiling). Pretty simple. With a huge smile. You see how big it is now? (laughter).

Q: (Shurmur) Heís kind of toyed with the idea of that, but do you expect to see that happen any time soon?
A: You just never know. These guys are playmakers. Anytime you get a chance to put playmakers out on the field, thatís a chance to win. Thatís what you want to do, trying to win the game. Thatís the purpose.

Q: Take those guys out of the equation are you looking forward to see the other guys?†
A: We got a bunch of guys back there that weíre working. We have some guys with experience. (WR) Kaelin Clay has experience. (WR) Cody Latimer has experience. So, we feel good about those guys and being able to move forward with them. I had Kaelin (in Carolina) last year and had some success with him.†

Q: Youíve had Odell in the past. What do you remember about his return skills from LSU?
A: Just like everybody sees on offense. Itís the same thing. Youíre not going to change just because youíre playing special teams or offense. Itís the same exact skill set. Heís explosive. Heís a big-time playmaker. What you see is what you get with Odell. It is what it is.

Q: Does he know the fair catch sign? (laughter)
A: Obviously, Odell wants to make a play. When he gets a chance to make one, heís going to try to make one.

Q: When you watch the tape of Saquon at Penn State, do you feel a little more comfortable about putting him on kick return?
A: Oh absolutely. Heís a special athlete. Both of those guys are special. Whenever you get a chance to get the ball in his hands, heís a special athlete.

Q: Have you settled on your first team coverage teams for punts and kickoffs? Thereís been some trouble with that in the past.
A: Those things are always under evaluation, based upon what weíre going to have on game day. A guy changes out here, a guy changes out there, whoís up, whoís down. You just never know. Thatís the life of a special teams coach.

Q: What have you seen from P Riley Dixon in terms of his growth?
A: Riley has done a good job. Heís maturing. Heís a young guy. Thatís the thing that people got to understand. Young players make mistakes. Offense, defense, special teams, they make mistakes, but theyíre learning. Every day Riley is getting better. Heís taking the coaching. We made some minor adjustments as far as how he warms up. Getting him a settled in routine. Heís coming along. We look forward to it.

Q: Coming from Denver where the air is thinner, is that an adjustment he (Dixon) had to make?
A: Not so much an adjustment. I coached in Denver for two years. A lot of people talk about the altitude. Itís more of the ball just flies. It doesnít hang, it just flies, and thatís a big difference. When we come back down to sea level, especially here, you got to deal with the wind every day, and thatís a whole different ball game. Those constant cross winds. Itíll get a little cold and itíll get cold with the wind. Thatís just something that heíll have to look forward to down the road.

Q: When you finish the chemo, do you have to take it to radiation?
A: No, just chemo. Itís chemo and I take pills every day. So, just chemo pills, treatment, chemo pills, then I take a week off.

Q: Was there any doubt in your mind that youíd be ready for the season?
A: No, there was never a thought in my mind. Iím sure my doctorís mind though Ė my familiesí mind, my wife Iím sure had a bunch of thoughts. In my mind, I never even thought of that.

Q: Howís your energy been through the chemo?
A: Itís tough. As a football coach, you donít think about this stuff. You get up, you do what you do, and live life. Iím not going to let any chemotherapy or cancer or anything else get in the way of what I do. Iím a football coach. Iím a father and a football coach, and thatís what I do. I got to get up every day. Nobody cares. Theyíre not going to feel sorry for you. Itís get up, go to work, and you got to earn your paycheck.

Q: Had you been feeling ill and they found it? Or did they catch it in good fortune?
A: Yeah, it was good fortune. Actually, I had two bouts with sepsis. They went in with the little endoscopy. When they did it, they saw the mass. The mass is kind of how I found out.
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