Linebackers Coach Bill McGovern -- September 27, 2019
Q: Do you have enough bodies this week?
A: We have enough. The guys have been working at it. Weíre looking forward to it. Itís a great challenge, but everyone is stepping up.
Q: What have you seen from Ryan Connelly thatís allowed him to step into such a big role so fast?
A: Well, I think the way Ryan prepares. Heís obviously a good football player, but he prepares the right way during the week. Heís gotten himself ready to play and heís shown up on game day.
Q: How much did things change for him? I know it the start of the second half, he had the green dot and was the signal caller. How much did that change things for him?
A: Itís a little something going from having somebody give you the call to making the calls. But again, itís a little bit of a tribute to him in the sense that heís preparing the way he should prepare. Heís on top of his game. He studies it. Heís putting in the extra time. He just has to be a little bit more vocal now.
Q: How much work did he get of that in the preseason, summer, making the calls?
A: At different times through the situations, he was in there. Not so much all the time with the first group, but with the second group. So, heís made calls to the defense out there. During the week at practice, guys all have the green dot on their helmet during practice, so theyíve heard it in preseason, theyíve heard it in practices. Theyíre used to it.
Q: Was that something he did in college, too?
A: No. College is usually all signals, unless theyíve changed something that I donít know.
Q: Has he surprised you with how quickly heís picked all of it up?
A: No. Iím happy with what heís done, as we thought when we had a chance to go and kind of scout him and look at him. We thought he did have some qualities that we really were excited about.
Q: I want to make sure I understood right. They all have the walkie-talkie during practice?
A: In practice, we have about three or four of the guys that will have them in.
Q: So if Alex (Ogletree) is the one getting them, heís still hearing them?
A: Well, otherwise youíre signaling for when the second group goes in. Itís one of those rather than have the change-out. Itís just a league rule that youíre only allowed to have that one on the field at a time.
Q: What about David Mayo? What does he bring? What have you seen from him so far?
A: Davidís a quick learner. Heís competitive as heck. Heís active and heís picked things up in a short period of time that heís been here, so weíre excited to see him play this weekend.
Q: What do you guys like so much about Nate (Stupar), bringing him back? Obviously, heís probably more of a special teams guy when he was here before. But bringing him back when Alec goes down when there are other options out there, what do you like about him?
A: The one thing about it is that Nate is extremely intelligent. He understands our scheme. Heís been involved with our defenses and knows what we do. Heís been out on the field for us before. He was coming off an injury last year, so he was a little bitÖ heís moving better this year. Thatís was what we were excited about, that he has the opportunity to be back with us now.
Q: There was some thought that maybe Josiah (Tauaefa) could get promoted. How close is he? What did you see from him this summer?
A: I like everything that Josiahís doing. Heís been preparing, does a great job in the meeting room. Heís working his tail off. When I say this, heís one of those guys who has definitely gotten better since heís been here.
Q: Would you feel comfortableÖ is he at the point where you think you could put him in a game if they called him up?
A: Thatís above my pay grade.
Q: Iím not saying whether they are going to call him up. Iím saying for you personally, would you trust him at this point to knowÖ
A: All of those guys, if theyíre going to be professionals, they all have to prepare to be ready to make the calls and make the plays out there. Thatís their job. Thatís their job description.
Q: When you have injuries, do you shorten your bench a little bit in the sense that you might play guys more?
A: Sure. Obviously, we have to have seven deacs on game day. But if youíre losing bodies, obviously someone else has to step up and you have to find different roles for different people.
Q: Can any of your edge guys move inside in a pinch if you need it? I know Lorenzo (Carter) had experience there. Is that something that you guys can work with?
A: Could we? Yeah. Weíve done that in the past. There are guys that can handle that. As we go into any game plan, weíre trying to take advantage of their skillsets and get them to do what they do best.
Q: How do you feel about the way Alec Ogletree played the first couple of games before the injury?
A: Heís been playing solid. Heís in good shape. Heís been working at it. He was active and productive. Obviously, weíre looking forward to getting him back. Heís doing everything he can in terms of rehabbing, and weíre looking forward to getting him back when heís healthy.
Q: You talked about scouting Connelly, and that you liked some of his qualities. What were those qualities that you liked when you saw him in college?
A: His intelligence, his quickness. When you talk to people about him that have been around him for a period of time when he was at Wisconsin, their comments. I think those guys, what they saw in him kind of intrigued you as a coach and as an organization.