WR Sterling Shepard -- April 15, 2019
Q: Tell us about your timeline with getting this deal done. Was it something in the works since the end of last season? Or did it come up pretty quickly?
A: ďIt came up kind of quickly. We got it done fairly fast. I think we went back and forth maybe three or four times, but it was all worth it -- about a month and a half, two months. It was done fairly quickly.Ē
Q: Did you expect that to be a possibility this offseason? Were you expecting that?
A: ďI knew it was a possibility. I didnít know how quickly it was going to go, or what the starting point was going to be, but I knew it was a possibility after the season. My agent contacted me. I had spoken with him, and they were pretty sure that it would get done before camp started. It was an exciting moment.Ē
Q: Whatís your reaction to the (Browns WR) Odell Beckham Jr. trade?
A: ďI was a little shocked at first, like everyone was I think, but you sit back and you look at it, itís kind of the nature of the business. That was a point for me to really sit back and realize that this is a business, and thatís just how things go sometimes.Ē
Q: How will you miss him?
A: ďI will miss him in a lot of ways. I learned a lot from him on the field. Thatís like a brother to me. Thatíll never be lost, but just being able to talk to him on game days on what we see. Thatís something that we did all the time. Just different things that we saw on the field, and how to go about handling them. Heís one of the best receivers in the game, in my opinion. Itís great to have that type of guy on your team that you could bounce ideas off of and share whatís going on through their eyes.Ē
Q: Thereís not many guys left from the (former Giants GM) Jerry Reese era. Did that ever enter your mind at all, the fact that you might not be here?
A: ďNo, that never entered my mind. I love being where Iím at. I work hard. I do everything the right way. It never really entered my mind. I didnít think that played a factor. Different things happen with different guys. I didnít think that was a reason.Ē
Q: What are your thoughts on the signing of (WR) Golden Tate, and do you think you guys are similar players?
A: ďYeah, we definitely are similar when it comes to our game. I was pretty excited, to be honest. To have a veteran like that to be able to -- Odell is gone and that was the guy that I bounced ideas off of. To have a guy thatís been in the league that long, and to have been around, itís great to have people like that that you can talk to about the game. I was pretty excited, and I have no doubt in my mind that we will be successful. Weíre both the type of guys that can play inside and outside, and I think coach will use us in a similar way that he used (Vikings WR Adam) Thielen and (Vikings WR Stefon) Diggs, and them. So, I donít see that being an issue at all.Ē
Q: Today was the first time the team came together since the roster moves and the trades. How was the energy around the building?
A: ďYou got new faces, but you get new faces every year, and around this time, itís a little different. Some guys you donít see, but I think everybody realizes thatís just the way this goes. We sit down at the end of the year, we look around, youíre not going to see these faces. This is the team that we have for this year, and make it the best. Guys are just trying to get familiar with each other. Yeah, it is a little different not having Odell sitting next to me and having different guys in the meeting room, but we all know thatís just the way this goes.Ē
Q: Have you given much thought that now with Odell being gone, your other teammates and receiver group will look to you as a leader and helping guide them in learning the offense?
A: ďYeah, it hit me, but like I said a few days ago, I think Odell going down kind of helped me with the leadership part of that. Being able to handle guys coming to me for some help on the playbook, or whatever it may be. I think that kind of helped me out the past 10 games with that aspect. Itís kind of different. You go from having a guy like Odell and having a guy like (former Giants WR) Brandon Marshall and those types of guys in the room, and now youíre the only one thatís kind of looked at for advice. Like I said, I feel like I have been prepped for that, and Iím ready for that.Ē
Q: The fact that Odell signed a long-term deal and soon got traded afterwards, is it unsettling to know that long-term contract might not guarantee you here long-term? How do you view that as a teammate and as a player?
A: ďTo be honest, I donít really try to think too far ahead. I just try to stay in the moment, and just handle things the way that they come. If I handle my business, and do what I have to do, and do things the right way, I have no doubt in my mind that Iíll be here. I think them giving me this contract is them just putting that trust in me that Iím going to do things the right way, and Iím going to perform the way Iím supposed to. Like I said, Iím not looking too far down the road. Iím definitely not going to worry about anything. Iím not one of those guys thatís going to be worried about what may happen. Just going to take one day at a time.Ē
Q: Whatís your relationship with (former Oklahoma QB) Kyler Murray, and how you think he will succeed in the NFL?
A: ďI left right when Kyler Murray was coming in, but heís a great guy from every time that Iíve met him. Heís been successful at every single level, and I donít see anything holding him back at this level. I think heíll do a great job.Ē