Head Coach Pat Shurmur -- September 20, 2019
Opening Statement (Pat Hanlon): (Cody) Latimer is the only guy that’s out. He didn’t practice today with the concussion. (Bennie) Fowler was limited and he’s questionable. Everybody else was full and available.
Q: Darius Slayton full?
A: Yeah, he had a good week of practice. There’s a really good chance that he’ll be available.
Q: What does his skillset bring potentially to this offense?
A: He’s displayed the ability to go and make a play down the field, which is good. He’s developed throughout the offseason. Unfortunately, he had the injury that kept him out, which would have helped him. But he does all of the things that a receiver needs to do.
Q: What are some of the challenges going against a Todd Bowles defense?
A: First of all, they’re very fundamental in what they do. When you’re in 21 or 12 (personnel), there are five on the line. So, you have to block them. You have to block them all the time. Then when they get into nickel… He teaches all of the concepts. They can play a, I wouldn’t call it a soft zone, but they can play a quarter zone if they choose. They can pressure if they choose. They can play man free if they choose. They aren’t necessarily extremes, but they can do everything that they need to do to try to defend an offense.
Q: Having Sterling Shepard back, how much does that help Daniel (Jones) just having a steady guy like that out there?
A: Anytime you get your frontline players back, it helps. Certainly, it’s not an excuse when they’re not there. Everybody on our roster is supposed to go in and make plays. But having Shep will be a good boost for us.
Q: With all of the quarterback stuff, this kind of slipped through the cracks. Shepard, the NFL was investigating how he stayed in the game after that concussion (against Dallas). From your vantage point that day or what you’ve learned since, what happened?
A: I have nothing to add to that. That’s something that’s going on behind the scenes.
Q: This transaction kind of went under the radar with some of the bigger news this week, but you claimed a tight end (Kaden Smith). That gives you five on the roster. That just seems like kind of a lot at that position. What went into that?
A: No, he was a player that we liked in last year’s draft. We had a really good grade on him. He was available, so we grabbed him.
Q: What’s been your message to the team with the quarterback change? When you addressed them on Wednesday, what do you say about that?
A: We addressed it on Wednesday that we made a switch, and we got back to work.
Q: You don’t feel the need to say anything special about it?
A: No. We addressed it initially. It was big news, and it’ll continue to be news, obviously. But we addressed it initially and we got back to work. I thought our guys handled things well.
Q: How did you feel about Daniel’s work in practice, getting normal first team reps?
A: I saw a week of practice that’s been very familiar to us behind the scenes. So, good.
Q: Did you have to spend additional time with him this week just getting him ready?
A: We all spent probably a little bit more time, but not really out of the realm of ordinary with Eli (Manning). We spend a lot of time with the quarterbacks, regardless of who it is. We’re always trying to get them ready.
Q: How much do you think about the possibility that the players could look at that move and it could be perceived as, ‘Oh, we’re looking towards the future now’?
A: I think they’re looking at this move based on the fact that we’re trying to beat Tampa Bay. Our future in this business is a short-term horizon. That’s really what it is.
Q: Will Eli be the backup on Sunday?
A: Eli’s the backup. Yup. So he’ll be number two and dress behind Dan.
Q: What do you expect him to do during the game? What can he do as the backup?
A: Be everything Eli is. In this role now, be supportive, help see things, and help make suggestions like all quarterbacks do as we tweak the plan if we need to.