WR Sterling Shepard -- July 24, 2019
Q: When you look ahead to this season now with everyone coming in today and getting ready to go, what kind of team do you have?
A: Itís really early to tell. You kind of have to get out there and get a feel for the guys and the group of guys that we have. I feel like we did a great job building the foundation during OTAs, and weíre just trying to continue that.
Q: Do you think thereís a chance this offense could be dynamic?
A: Without a doubt. We have a lot of playmakers, weíve got guys that make great plays after the catch, weíve got a great running back in Saquon Barkley, and you know our quarterback situation as well. Eliís (Manning) been doing this for a while and he knows what it takes to win. So, I feel like we doówe just have to gel it all together.
Q: Did you get with Daniel Jones or Eli since OTAs, and where?
A: No, I actually didnít get a chance to get with either of them. I was working out in California, so we were all kind of in different places.
Q: How do you as receivers handle a situation where there might be a change at quarterback at some point? Do you have to prepare for both guys?
A: No, I just think you go with what we have. You donít really focus on whatís going to happen, you just take every day by day and get better as a team and a group, and thatís how you can control. You never know whatís going to happen with anybody in this sport. Like I said, you just take it day by day.
Q: Is there pressure on this offense to get things going quickly so that a quarterback change doesnít come about?
A: I donít think weíre going to add any pressure to ourselves. Like I said, I think we just have to figure out how this group gels together. Once again, Iím taking it day by day and I know thatís the thought process of a lot of other guys in the locker room. Whatever happens happens, but weíre going to do our best to put our best foot forward every day.
Q: Every year is different obviously, but do you come into this camp feeling a little more different. Odellís (Beckham Jr.) not here, who has always been with you, and you have a long contract nowódo you have a different mindset coming into this year?
A: I know a little bit is going to be added on my plate, but Iíve been groomed and Iíve been prepared for this moment. With Odell going out the past two seasons, I think Iíve just been groomed for that position, and Iím really just focused on the guys we have in the locker room and the guys we have in the receiver room. So, yes, I know thereís a little bit added on my plate, but Iím not going to put any extra pressure on myself. Iím just going to come out and be me.
Q: Is there more added on your plate on the field or off the field?
A: I think both. Iím the longest tenured guy in the receiver room, so I have to make sure all the guys are in line. I have Golden Tate with me, whoís been around the game for a long time, so he knows how things are supposed to be done, and weíre just going to take it from there.
Q: Do you think you can prove that you can be in that first tier of NFL receivers now that youíre the number one guy here?
A: Thatís the goal, but Iím really focused on the team and getting us back on the right track. The past few seasons isnít the way Giants football has been played in the past, and thatís my main focus. Iím not really focused on personal stats, I just want to get this team rolling.
Q: Pat Shurmur was just here and said that in his mind Daniel Jones has exceeded expectations in a lot of ways. What have you seen from him so far?
A: I havenít had a chance to go with him because he hasnít really run with the ones, but just from what Iíve seen, heís a very polished quarterback and a smart guy. Heís going to be great for us.
Q: Does continuity with the team help expedite the process of gelling together, and how do you mix that in with new guys here?
A: You just have to get them up to speed. Thatís the main thing. Especially with rookies, they donít really know whatís going to happen next, and kind of run around like chickens with their heads cut off. So, you have to get those guys up to speed, and then youíre able to play fast and play without thinking.
Q: You spent some time training with Saquon (Barkley) during the offseason. How much closer are you guys and what have you learned about him going from year one into year two?
A: I love that dude. We push each other every day. It could be--we go outside and toss a ball, and we set up all these different trinkets and hitting bottles with the ball. We compete with everythingówho can swim the fastest, or whateveróand I think itís all in good nature, and itís ultimately going to make us better. Like I said, whatever it is, weíre competing at it.
Q: Did you and Saquon set out this offseason to do more together, or did it kind of happen organically?
A: It just kind of happened that way. We were both going to be training out in LA anyway, so we just thought that we should be together, and any other guy that was going to be out there could come to our house and train with us, too. We had Kyle Lauletta out there for a little bit before OTAs. Whoever came, itís just good to be around teammates and build that comradery.
Q: How did you do in all those competitions with Saquon?
A: On hill runs, I got him in a couple. If you ask him, they were video finishes, so heíll try to stick his hand out or something and try to cheat a little bit, but I think I got a couple of them with most of the challenges we had.
Q: When this offense was clicking at points late last year, what was happening? What was the reason that you saw?
A: I just think it comes down to being on the same page as everybody. When we go throughout the week and we practice, and then we just execute it on gameday, it all just goes to being in sync with each other.
Q: Coming off of last year, do you have a chip on your shoulder? Does the team have a chip on their shouder?
A: I think there is a little bit of a chip on our shoulder. Like I said, this is not how Giants football has been played in the past, and we want to get it back on the right track, so you kind of have to have a chip on your shoulder with that. With the way the last season went, it didnít go the way we wanted it to go, so yes, we do.
He needs to be more consistent catching the ball, and better at coming down with contested balls IMO.