Head Coach Joe Judge
August 27, 2020
Q: There are a lot of practices around the league today being cancelled. What were the conversations like this morning with your team and how did that process go?
A: I spoke briefly with the leadership council today. We’re going to continue the conversations later this afternoon. We have a gap in our schedule. We’re treating today like a day before a game. Obviously, we had a morning practice. That’s a little bit different from what we do on a normal Saturday before a Sunday game. We have a chunk of time until we lead up to evening meetings. We’re going to reconvene later tonight before we kick off the special teams and unit meetings. We’re letting the players think about what they want to do. We’re going to have conversations as a coaching staff and ownership tonight, and we’ll have more answers then.
Q: Was cancelling practice a realistic option or was it sort of a continuation from yesterday when you said that they told you that they wanted to practice because of, as Leonard (Williams) said, the shortened preseason and shortened training camp and all?
A: The players voiced that opinion. They wanted to continue going with it. We had conversations with them two days ago and then again yesterday. These guys have been very urgent on continuing on work. That doesn’t detract at all from what we’re doing in the community, from the action we’re taking as a team, for how we’re staying organized within the social justice groups. We have the Team of Teams program. We’re just making sure that we allot time within a day that we have that as a team to work going forward.
Q: Your two-minute offense today, some good things, some sloppy things. Overall this camp, how do you feel (Daniel) Jones is running your two-minute offense?
A: I think the unit is making a lot of improvement. Two-minute, four-minute situations are things that teams have to really get a feel for each other. Look, for me and Jason (Garrett) as head coach and coordinator, me and Pat (Graham) in four-minute situations, the offense with the personality of the play-calling and then understanding each unique situation, this is why we’re practicing on a daily basis, to make sure we iron out any kinks. But I think the progress has been very good. I’m pleased with the way it’s going.
Q: We didn’t see (Blake) Martinez out there today. Any update on him?
A: He’s just checking with the trainers on something. We’ll have more updates later. We’ll let you guys know.
Q: Matt Peart, saw him getting some work with the ones. What has he shown to impress you?
A: He’s a guy who comes to work every day with a lunch pale and he’s improved going along. As we said early in camp, we’re going to move our line around. We’re going to work guys at different spots and make sure we build in versatility and position depth. We had to move some guys around today for that purpose. He’s a guy who’s improved every day.
Q: When Sterling (Shepard) makes that great play and tosses the ball, and you kind of ask him to just clean it up. How important are moments like that that just no matter who the player is, that you’re just kind of reinforcing the way that you need things to go?
A: Look, every practice is a mini game. You have to learn from the experiences going forward. He made a tremendous play on the play and then he threw the ball. That’s a 15-yard penalty. We’re going to have the ball on the 10-yard line, the penalty is going to put us on the 25-yard line. That’s not something that we’re going to accept from any player on the team. It’s a learning lesson that he’s got to take and go forward. But it’s important that everybody else learns from that same lesson that we don’t have to repeat the mistake.
Q: Who was the player you just met on the field late? Was that (Brandon) Williams or (KeiVarae) Russell? Who was that?
A: It was neither of those guys. It was no one I’m going to give by name right now. But it was neither of those guys you named.
Q: You said you’re going to have extensive conversations with your team later today moving forward. Does that mean there’s the possibility that the scrimmage tomorrow night might not be played? I know some teams around the league have cancelled that. Just curious where you guys stand with yours?
A: I can’t really live in the hypotheticals right now. Right now, we’re planning on having the scrimmage tomorrow. We’ll continue the conversations with our team later on and we’ll see where that takes us.
Q: You mentioned ownership was involved in these conversations. What kind of a role has John (Mara) played in this?
A: John’s been active since the spring in terms of voicing to the players his support. But I’ll really let John speak for himself on that. I think John’s been a key figure, obviously. Him and Steve (Tisch). But starting back in the spring, they’ve been active and present in meetings we’ve had, whether it’s through Zoom, and now as we meet in person with them, it gives us an opportunity to all get together.
Q: How are you going to split up the roster tomorrow for the scrimmage? Is it going to be offense vs. defense or are you going to kind of mix them up?
A: It will be. We’ll have the special teams, it will be full offensive units and full defensive units. But otherwise, it’ll be offense vs. defense. We explored the possibility of splitting the team into two teams. We felt it was really best for the offensive and defensive coaches and units to get used to the communication that they’re going to have on the sideline together, to keep all the offense and defense together. We can still accomplish everything we want to, but we’re just going to go one sideline offense, one sideline defense.
Q: Assuming you have the scrimmage tomorrow, is it going to be scripted or is it going to be kind of a free for all? Pat’s going to call his side, or how is it going to work exactly as far as what you want to see and how it’s going to be formatted?
A: There are certain scenarios I want to make sure that we build in. At some point, I may want to see a two-minute end of half, two-minute end of game, a four-minute situation. I may want to see some low red zone work if that doesn’t come up. I have the freedom to kind of flex it and say spot the ball at a certain point. But I’m going to start with the mentality that we’re going to go out there and play ball. We’re going to simulate this game as much as we can and we’ll let it be natural. Start with a kickoff, kick return, wherever the ball lies, we’re just going to play it from there. It’ll be offense vs. defense. If they go three and out, we punt, we bring out the twos, they go ahead and play.
Q: I know you said you’re still waiting to hear from the trainers, but is there a chance the Martinez issue is serious or are you not too concerned?
A: At this moment right here, I’m not overly concerned. He’s just kind of checking on something right now. We’ll let you know more information as we go.