LB Alec Ogletree
August 19, 2019
Q: How do you feel?
A: I feel pretty good, itís been a good training camp for us and I think we are on the right steps to where we want to be as a defense and as a team. You know I got a few more weeks left of training camp and then into the season and hopefully we can finish strong and start the season off well.
Q: Is the defense coming along as you expected?
A: We are and like I said, you canít just talk about it, you have to go out there and do it each and every day. Like Iíve said, we continue to grow as a defense and get better at communication and everybody is coming together really well.
Q: Howís your calf coming along?
A: Itís been good; itís been feeling better for sure.
Q: You have to get that new number out in the game now?
A: I was out there the first game with the new number. When it counts when we play Dallas, thatíll be the real test, for sure.
Q: Youíll be ready for that one?
Q: We probably wonít see you until then?
A: I donít know. Itís up to coach.
Q: When (Jake) Carlock got that interception return in number 52--
A: Really happy, I was happy for him.
Q: Was it the number, though? You had 5 interceptions in that number last year.
A: Itís part the number, but also you have to have some skill. He was able to tip the ball up to himself and he was able to just take it to the house. He had a lot of swag there when he did it.
Q: So, no regrets?
A: No regrets, no regrets. Iím extremely happy for him, glad he represented the number really well and more power to him.
Q: What did you notice when watching the film on the 2 touchdown drives (actually touchdown and field goal) with first team defense?
A: I think the first one, we shouldíve gotten the pick, then we didnít get the pick and kind of extended the drive and we missed some open field tackles and guys kind of got out of position. It couldíve been first game jitters or whatever, but I feel like we communicated really well the next few times we went out there. The first drive, it was pass and we didnít give up a touchdown, did we? It was a field goal, yeah. I mean we had a penalty that extended the drive, so you canít do that, but overall I thought they played well. We handled the sudden change real well and returned the ball on offense and defense went out there and got three and out, made them back up and they missed a field goal, so we made a lot of good strides and being able to go out there and continue to play even when something doesnít go our way.
Q: Which of the defensive rookies is furthest along and how much does that surprise you?
A: Theyíre all kind of right around the same area. Some guys get more reps and then others like Dexter (Lawrence II) has been running with the 1ís and stuff. So you can see how he would grow and improve.
Q: What do you think of Evan Engram so far in camp?
A: Heís done well. I felt like heís gotten even smoother with his routes and getting open more and catching the ball and making those plays in camp and heís got a good relationship with the quarterback in camp and tight ends, so it shows.
Q: Have you noticed anything about his blocking?
A: Yeah, I mean I havenít really dived into it yet, but some of the runs they get, I do see him actually trying really hard to get in there and heís doing his job and thatís what you want out of your tight end and out of anybody, for them to do their job when theyíre called upon.
Q: In the preseason, much of what the defense runs is vanilla. When the regular season starts, how much more can you show?
A: When the regular season starts, the playbook is pretty much wide open. Depending on your defensive coordinator, and offensive coordinator, some I have been a part of where basically what we ran in preseason is the same thing we ran during the year. You also have where you run certain stuff in the preseason and you may or may not run it again in the regular season. Just depends on the type of guys you have there and their abilities. Itís just about winning your matchups. The preseason, like you said, both sides are pretty vanilla in what they do and donít show a lot, but when the season opens up, thatís when you get the full force.
Q: What would you say we are seeing right now, 10 percent, 20 percent of what you guys do?
A: I couldnít really put a number on it. We arenít going out there and running our whole (scheme). We arenít game planning against a team. Certain weeks you have certain stuff that you do, and that determines how much you put in this week and how much you donít. Right now, we are pretty generic in what we do as far as playing our base coverages that we will use during the season as well.
Q: It seems like everyone is like that?
A: Itís pretty much throughout the league. You are going to see two high, you are going to see one high. Thatís going to be all you are going to see pretty much.
Q: Is it important to see your entire first team defense in the preseason?
A: I think we get great reps out here at practice. We take pride in making sure we are communicating well and also communicating in the classroom as well about certain stuff that we see. Itís about making it into the season and being as healthy as you can to sustain throughout the whole year, because itís a long season. Itís also good to get those reps and some teams do it during the preseason games, but some donít. We are kind of in between that, we havenít had everybody out there on the field at the same time mostly. I think during practice we get really good reps and do our best.
Q: Where have you seen Ximines take the biggest step since he has been here, what did you think of him throwing up the X after his sack?
A: The X-man has made great strides for this defense. There is a reason why we drafted him, he is able to get to the quarterback, like you said. When he got to the quarterback he threw up his X. and hopefully we will see a lot of that this year.
Q: Did you drop weight?
A: Do I look good? Thank you. Iíve been working hard, I kind of changed my diet a little bit and tried to eat a lot cleaner than what I was used to doing. Also, still make sure I get the right meals in, the right work done.
Q: How much did you drop?
A: Probably about 10 pounds
Q: Is your body fat percentage down?
Q: From what to what?
A: From halfway to down
Q: Do you feel like you needed to be lighter?
A: This game is a fast-paced game. The guys that they bring in now are not your 250s or 240s. They are 225 and 230 at the most playing linebacker. You have to be able to move and cover ground at a fast speed and make plays. For me, still doing the same thing, if you get lighter, you can be a little bit faster than what you were. Thatís my thinking behind that.
Q: Do you feel faster?
A: I feel like I can definitely still run. I just have to do what the coaches ask me to do. Half of the game is being able to run and chase down tackles or cover out in space and stuff like that.
Q: How do you feel practicing in the heat?
A: Itís tough, itís not easy. If you have the right mindset to make sure you get your work done, it can be an advantage for you because you donít let the elements affect you and what you do. For us, practicing in the heat is definitely good. We are going to have a couple of hot games when we go to Tampa and something like that. Itís probably hotter down there than it is here. It gives us a little bit of preparation about being in the heat like that and pushing through.