S Jabrill Peppers
September 3, 2020
Q: Just want to know how difficult the last couple of weeks have been in the wake of Jacob Blake? How do you feel the organization and you guys are handling it as a group and what you hope to do more in the future?
A: Obviously, it’s a tough situation. That, and everything else that’s going on in the world. Obviously as a black man it definitely affects me heavily. We’ve come together, we’ve had countless talks about how we can make real change and make real impact. I think we’ve done a good job. We’re all in charge of certain areas. We’re helping with police reform, education inequalities, food inequalities. We’ve been having very healthy and productive conversation. Obviously, we can’t do it alone, but we all have large platforms where our voices can be heard and make a huge impact. I definitely think that we’ve been doing a great job of using our voice.
Q: How well do you know Logan Ryan, who is going to be your new wing man in the secondary? How excited were you when he finally agreed to terms on his contract?
A: Obviously, I’m a Jersey guy, he’s a Jersey guy. I don’t know him personally, but obviously I know of him, heard of him. He’s had a very productive career wherever he’s been at. I definitely think it’s a great acquisition and he’ll definitely help the team.
Q: He’s a little older than you. You have never played against him in high school or even college right?
A: No, nope. Never got the chance to line up against him.
Q: After a whole training camp here what is your take on this defense? How much better can it be next season than last year now that you’ve added a bunch of playmakers in the offseason?
A: I’m not really focused on last year. It’s a new year, a new focus, a new opportunity. We’ve all stepped up to the task and we’ve all been working hard. We’ve been working well in cohesion. Obviously, we’re not where we want to be and that’s fine. We still have a week or so until the game. I definitely think we are headed in the right direction. We just have to keep stacking good days on top of good days and put the final product out there on Monday night, which we’re excited about.
Q: We’re about a week away from teams traveling, from playing football games where you are going to be tackling guys from other states. How safe do you feel when in a week new variables are introduced?
A: I think the league has done a good job of following CDC guidelines. I know we’ve done a good job of testing everyone every day all throughout the building. Wearing our masks, keeping our six feet of space. I would like to think that other teams are doing that as well. We haven’t had any problems yet. I think if we keep following the proper guidelines and stating discipline throughout the year, I don’t think much of it. I trust the league, I trust what we’re doing here. I’m just happy we can still go out there and do what we love. That’s my take on it.
Q: In terms of leadership within the locker room, if you go back to the spring, I don’t know if I would have told you with all the circumstances this team would have to deal with that maybe the players would have had doubts as to how close the group could be. Would there be enough leadership for some new guys from old guys blending. I guess my question is are you surprised with how close this team appears to be considering all the circumstances that you have dealt with outside of a traditional locker room? Lets’ face it, that’s where the team bonds.
A: Football is the ultimate team sport. Obviously the better you know the guy next to you, the better you want to play for him. I think we’ve done a great job, even though we are maintaining our distance, we’ve done a great job of getting to know one another. Even tracing back to the spring, having Zoom calls and everybody on text chains or getting to know the new guy. We have a policy, well not a policy, but the guys do a great job of whenever we get a new guy in the building, go up to him introduce ourselves. Make conversations, get to know that guy and make him feel welcome, that’s our thing. I think we’ve done a pretty good job of that regardless of the circumstances.
Q: I just wanted to get your take on going up against Evan every day in practice and how much you think that matchup will benefit you when you are facing opponents?
A: Obviously I don’t need to talk about the elite qualities he possesses. Seeing him every day definitely helps me. A tight end that has 4.4 speed, quick, can go up high point the ball, great breaks, great routes, it’s only going to make me better. I take the challenge head on each and every day. I know he does as well, to just go out there and compete because we know we are going to make each other better. That’s the beauty of it. All those guys, Kaden, Toilolo, myself, Chand ( Sean Chandler), Julian Love, just the constant competition knowing that we’re pushing each other to get better. I think it will definitely show on game days.
Q: They gave him a touchdown on that last one, what did you think of that?
A: You guys know, if that’s live, that’s a tackle. We’re a week away, I’m not going to do anything to clip his heels or anything because we need that guy. People who know the circumstances know that’s a tackle. It’s an offensive league, we know that. They want to see points scored. We know what we’re up against, it is what it is. In my book that’s a tackle (laughing).