Head Coach Pat Shurmur -- May 3, 2019
Opening Statement: Alright, first day of the minicamp, it was actually really good. We have 23 of our guys that we either drafted or brought in as free agents. The rest of those guys are tryout guys. It was a pretty competitive day. We saw a lot of good things from a lot of the guys that we drafted. They competed well. This is the first day for some of them of hopefully a long career. There were certainly mistakes, but you clean those up as you go. It is fun to be back out on the field, I think I can speak for all the coaches, it is good to get the young players going. As you know, we will work them through this weekend, they will go away and come back and join the team next Monday. I think the advantage of them doing it this weekend is that theyíll have another week to learn the stuff before they get back here with the vets. With that, I will take your questions.
Q: Howíd you think Daniel Jones looked?
A: I thought he did a good job. It is a lot for a quarterback coming into an NFL system. I thought he did a good job today.
Q: What is your first impression of him as a worker?
A: Time will tell. This is a very accomplished, talented and smart young man that gets it. He worked extremely hard yesterday and today.
Q: Do you start with the basics with him? Square one?
A: Yes, it is square one for all of us, all of the players, especially the quarterback. You are really directing everyone from the snap count to the huddle call and so on. I was telling the quarterbacks that it is sort of a lost art these days to take a snap under center and then call a play in the huddle. Believe it or not, for some of them, that is a new experience. Most teams, (in) college run no huddle. It is operations where they are just looking at cards and basically just say the snap counts. That is part of what you go through when you evaluate and choose a quarterback. Their ability to do that at this level.
Q: Did any of the guys particularly impress you? Maybe guys that you did not expect?
A: I think they all pretty much performed pretty well. There were mistakes and dropped balls. All things you see the first day of a practice. They all competed hard and were smart about how they did it. They were competitive. We will go in there and watch the tape. Typically, it is like when you go to the Senior Bowl, you donít want to really evaluate the quarterbacks on the first day because they are getting used to the receivers. The second day things start to smooth out a bit.
Q: UDFA (Eric) Dungey is listed as a QB/TE. What is it about his skillset that has him listed in that capacity?
A: He is a very accomplished quarterback and made a lot of plays with his feet. He made some good throws out there as well. He is one of those guys we had our eyes on at the draft. We will see. I think he is a good football player. Usually there is a place on the field for good football players. We will see what happens.
Q: What did you think of (WR Darius) Slaytonís first day?
A: He was running good routes. He had a few drops early but by the end of it he made a couple of nice contested catches. That is why you practice. There is a lot to get used to. New routes, new plays, new places to line up. That is why you practice.
Q: Was there any thought of Sam Beal coming in to get some work?
A: He actually could not. By the way his year played out, he was ineligible to come out for this. I donít know the exact wording on it you would have to check with (Assistant GM Kevin) Abrams. We were trying to get him out here but based on his year, he was not able to compete.
Q: What are your thoughts on what happened to Corey Ballentine?
A: I am really disappointed that he was the victim of a crime. He is a great young man. We got to know him really well through the draft process. My son trained with him at EXOS, so I had some knowledge of what a great man he is. It is very unfortunate that he was a victim of a crime. That could happen to any of us. We are here for him. He is going through the vigils and the funerals, the things that he has to go through. We are here to support him as he comes back to us. We are just here for him. Thoughts and prayers go his way.
Q: How is he doing physically?
A: We have not seen him yet. He got shot in the (glute) so I donít know.
Q: The expectation is that he will be able to fully heal?
A: Yes, that is what they are saying, but it might take a little bit of time.
Q: Do you expect that he will be here next Monday?
A: We are hopeful. Again, this is a unique situation. We want him to get full closure on his end. We are sensitive to that. This is a real life situation. We want to make sure he gets full closure. It is May. We play in September. We want to make sure he gets done on that end what he needs to and gets the help that he needs.
Q: What are some things you like about Daniel (Jones)?
A: He is a guy that can execute well from the pocket but he also has a good set of legs so we can move around. Boots, snakes, things we did with Eli. Mobility is important in todayís game. Whether you use him as a runner or, typically if you are going to have a long drive and you are going to score a touchdown, the quarterback needs to do something with his legs in that drive. Moving the pocket, scrambling. Sometimes moving in the pocket and throwing it away or scrambling and making a play. Scramble and slide. A QB and his ability to move his legs is very important.
Q: Is there any position youíre looking to fill that you may not have addressed in the draft?
A: We did draft a tackle, as you know, and then we have another free agent that we signed, but weíre just looking at all positions. When you have a 90-man roster, to find a really good football player in these tryout settings -- stranger things have happened. I think when you look at rosters, thereís a whole heck of a lot of guys that are on teams that are free agents. Actually, more free agents than guys we actually were picked in the fifth, sixth, and seventh round. These types of events are very, very important. You can find a guy that can help you win games.
Q: Obviously, a lot of expectations are on the shoulders of Daniel Jones. Did you have to talk to him in regards to being his own man as opposed to trying to be the next Eli Manning?
A: When we went through the process, we were very certain that he would be his own man. Thatís why we picked him, and we were very certain that he can handle the scrutiny that comes with being the quarterback of the New York Football Giants. Itís a lot of attention. Thereís a lot of passion for what we do, and especially for the guy that plays that position, and weíre very certain that he can handle it.
Q: Was there something specific about him that made you certain that he can handle it?
A: Itís just his mindset. Heís very accomplished, heís very smart, he gets it, and he understands what comes with being the quarterback here. If youíre in this game long enough, youíre in the arena, you get cheered and you get booed, and heís smart enough to know how to handle that type of stuff, and do what he can to help us win football games. Thatís part of it.
Q: How involved were you with evaluating (QB/TE) Eric Dungey and the other free agent quarterbacks available?
A: A few of the guys, but he was a key guy, a guy that we targeted. Obviously, I know all the players, whether we draft them or bring them in as free agents. Obviously, I know the drafted players to a greater degree, but thereís a few guys a year that Iíll call after camp.
Q: Heís listed as a tight end also. Heís not played tight end. Will you work him in the tight end room as well? How will you split his work on the field this week?
A: Weíll just see. I think we wanted to bring him in and look at him as a quarterback, which he played, and then just see how this grows. The one good thing about when you train a player as a quarterback, they learn what everybody else is doing. The details of the other positions, they just need to get it on the field. Heck, this is day one. Heís only been out there for two hours. So, weíll just see how this goes.
Q: What jumped out to you about (DT) Dexter Lawrence today?
A: Again, I think he gets it too. The first thing that jumps out about Dexter is heís a pretty big man. Heís got a feel for things. Heís a guy that can play the run and rush the passer. Weíre looking forward to getting him going. When you pick a guy from Clemson, and heís played on the biggest stage there is in college football. The other thing that struck me is this isnít going to be too big for him. Weíre looking forward to getting him going.
Q: In reference to Corey Ballentineís incident, the way that some of things have been framed and talked about regarding his incident, did that bother you?
A: Iím certainly aware of some of the stuff, I guess. We know most, if not, all the details. Thatís really not for me to comment on.