Head Coach Pat Shurmur -- July 26, 2019
Opening Statement: I think it got released. Corey Coleman unfortunately hurt his knee yesterday, so we’ll just have to see where it goes for him. I feel bad for the guy because he’s worked really hard. We’ll just have to see where it is. I don’t have all of the details right now. We’ll just see where that goes. But otherwise it’s Day Two. I thought yesterday was a good day. It was competitive. I thought the guys practiced smart. We got a lot done. I think we took one step forward yesterday. Another day today.
Q: We were told it was an ACL injury [for Corey Coleman]. Is that true? Is he done for the season?
A: Yeah that’s true. So most likely that will be it. Again, he’ll go through the process. He’ll get second opinions and all that stuff.
Q: How much did he figure into the plans for the offense this year?
A: He was a guy that had a chance to be in there and compete to either start or have a role.
Q: Is there a chance Sterling [Shepard] is out for all of training camp? Will he be back for Week One?
A: He’ll be back soon. It’s the tip of his thumb. He’ll be out there running around today. I’m not concerned about that one at all.
Q: You’re pretty short at that position now.
A: We’ll get somebody in, I’m sure. There will be some other guys in. We brought in Da’Mari [Scott] already. We’ll adjust if we have to, how we practice, just to make sure we’ve got what we need.
Q: Will you bring in a veteran now?
A: I don’t know. This is very new for us. We’ll go up there and we’ll discuss as we go. As I mentioned, for whatever reason, adjust the roster to get done what we need.
Q: No surgery for Sterling?
A: No, no surgery.
Q: With Coleman, how did it happen?
A: Just in practice, running around. I don’t know if he was hit. He may have been bumped. But no, he was just out there playing.
Q: Where does that leave you at kick returner?
A: We still have guys that can do it. We have [Cody] Latimer. We have Golden Tate, Brittan Golden. So, we’ve got guys back there that have done it, and we feel good about them.
Q: You don’t want to use Jabrill [Peppers] in that role?
A: Jabrill is a guy that…yeah, I didn’t mention him but he’s one of those guys that we could put back there at any time, obviously.
Q: Can he return kicks, punts and play defense?
A: Yeah, I mean we’d like to find somebody else to at least work at it. The one thing about Jabrill is in critical situations, we can certainly put him back there. He’s done it. I mean, he’s a guy that I’ve talked about it, he can play on all four downs. That’s good.
Q: Given Evan Engram’s skillset, could his versatility help you fill that void [at WR]?
A: Yeah, I think so. I think he’s got wide receiver traits. I think we talked about that yesterday. We actually use him in a detached role, or what would appear to be a wide receiver role. We did it last year, and we’ll continue to do that.
Q: A few of the wide receivers currently on the roster have played less than four NFL games. Does that inexperience worry you at all? Does it increase your interest in signing a veteran?
A: I don’t know if the first part influences the second part. We’ve got a lot of young players at a lot of positions. We’ll get the guys ready to play. I’ve said all along, everybody has to do their part. We had guys yesterday that made plays.
Q: With Janoris [Jenkins] as the veteran in that group, what are you looking for from him this year? Maybe more of a leadership role?
A: Well yeah, he’s going to be thrust into that leadership role by the nature of his age. He’s one of the older players on defense. Talking to him through the offseason and then being with him as we start camp here, he understands that. I think he’s ready to take that on. I think sometimes you look at a guy that doesn’t say much and you think he hasn’t been a leader. All along, he’s played well and played hard and he’s been there. The one thing about Janoris is he’s been very durable. Just by the nature of doing those things, he’s led. So I’m sure he’ll continue to do that and even do it more.
Q: Can Sterling play with the thumb injury?
A: Sure, yeah. I’m not concerned about Sterling. He’ll be out there. He’ll be out there running around today.
Q: Do you think he’ll be back catching at some point in camp?
A: Oh yeah, absolutely.
Q: Will he get preseason action?
A: We’ll see. I think we called him “week-to-week.” So we’ll just see where it is. It’s this part of his thumb, right up here on the tip.
Q: Will we see Darius Slayton?
A: He won’t be out there yet.
Q: How close is he?
A: I’m not sure yet. We’ll see.
Q: What did you think of Daniel Jones’ first day?
A: I thought he did a good job. I thought he made strides. Early on, I think somebody said something about his completion percentage early on. But he had two deep balls that were dropped that were good throws. He finished the practice with a high completion percentage. We track that all along. But within the practice, in terms of getting us in the right plays and making sure we were in the right protections, for the first time out in a training camp setting, I thought he made progress.
Q: In those situational periods, do you focus more on him making the right read as opposed to how it ends up? Because the read is probably more important.
A: Sure, sure. I think you can watch a guy and see it live and say “Well he did this” or “He did that.” Sometimes you have to be careful about what the results appear to be, because we may have been trying to do certain things. There are times when we’re trying to force the ball down the field where there may be an interception or two in practice that gets charted as something where if it happens in a game, it’s not good, certainly. But there’s something to learn from that. I think as we go, we watch all of the plays. We know what he’s being asked to do. There are times where balls get batted. There are times where balls get dropped. You just have to be… from our standpoint, if he’s making progress and doing what we try to ask him to do, then the mistakes he makes, you learn from it.
Q: So on the deep ball to Bennie Fowler that was dropped, it’s charted as a drop or an incomplete pass. But do you also chart it as a good throw?
A: Yeah, I mean we chart everything. You sort of correct it and move on. The Cowboys didn’t see that play. You learn from it. The guy that needs to learn from that is Bennie. Catch the ball… For your purposes to write about it, I think it’s maybe important. For ours, it was a good read and a good throw. Bennie, catch the ball. That’s it. By the way, I’m not pointing out Bennie. Bennie made a lot of nice plays yesterday. He can drop one post in a lifetime, and that was it.
Q: The play that Lorenzo Carter made, the interception in the backfield, we hear so much about his athleticism. What can you say about that?
A: That was a terrific play. As a head coach, that’s what you like to see. As an offensive coach, you don’t want those kinds of things to happen. But when a guy makes a great individual effort like that, that was awesome. Hopefully we’ll see more of that.
Q: There were some flags thrown in the secondary yesterday. Is it good for the young guys to see what’s going to be called in the NFL, since it’s a little different?
A: It is, it is. What you saw yesterday, too, through the offseason, the guys aren’t allowed to bump and run. There’s really no contact. Yesterday was the first day out there they’re bumping and running. So there’s a lot to be learned from your first time through it. It’s very important to have the officials here. There were a lot of things that happened yesterday that we were able to clean up in the meetings last night. Then we’ll come out today and make sure they get corrected.
Q: Getting back to Lorenzo [Carter], can he be a double-digit sack guy? And do you need him to be?
A: We certainly hope so. We’ve seen guys in their second year really make a jump. He played a lot of really good football last year as a rookie. When I look at him, just looking at him physically, he came back and looks like a more mature body type in his second year. He’s going to be a really fine player. We’re hopeful he can create pressure, just like Markus Golden, who two years ago I think had 12.5 sacks. We’ve got guys there that have gotten close and sacked the QB in the past. Plus X-Man (Oshane Ximines). Plus the other guys we have at the position.
Q: How is Golden Tate’s grasp of the new offense?
A: He’s got it. He’s ready to go.
Q: Have you had any conversations with him about what he likes?
A: Yeah, I think we kind of know what he likes. As we go through the installations, you’ll see depending on what the plays are that we’re installing that day, certain guys in practice will get more touches than others. As we hone in on the game plan, we kind of focus on those plays.
Q: We didn’t see much from Antonio Hamilton last year as a DB. We saw him used more as a gunner. Obviously he makes a play yesterday at DB. Where does he fit in for you guys at corner? What do you like about him at that spot?
A: He’s competing there. We’ve got a better feel for him, and that really was a terrific play yesterday to punch the ball out and score with it. He’s in that group with those guys trying to make the team. He obviously did a lot of good things on special teams a year ago. That sometimes gets you on the roster. Then you kind of grow on the roster into another position, which obviously would be corner for him.
Q: With all of the draft picks at that spot, can a guy like Hamilton, who showed how good he can be on special teams, can that elevate him and kind of keep him on a level playing field as the draft picks?
A: Well, I don’t know. When guys show that they can play on teams, especially skilled position guys, you know the gunner, cover the gunner type guys, they have a role on the team. So once they’re on the team, their role can expand.
Q: On Eli’s response to Odell’s comments to GQ.
A: I don’t make much of that. I think we move on. Those become issues of the day. Quite frankly, I don’t have much response to those comments.
Q: Did you like the fact that Eli had a comeback?
A: I think Eli is a very competitive guy, and very prideful. That’s what I like. Again, those are issues of the day that really don’t concern me.