DL Dexter Lawrence II
October 1, 2020
Q: I know it’s not your position group, but what do you lose as a defense when Jabrill (Peppers) is not on the field?
A: Honestly, he’s the energy guy. He brings a lot of energy to the group, positivity, motor, things like that. Now you have to fill that void. Obviously, he’s an amazing player and we’d obviously love to have him play. But now it’s someone else’s time to take on that role and have that responsibility just to be that guy. That’s why you have second team or you have backup guys that can fill that role.
Q: Can you do the, obviously you’re not going to play safety, or maybe you can, but can you do the energy stuff?
A: Definitely. I try to bring it all the time. Like I said in previous times, the d-line tries to be those guys who set the tone every day, who bring the energy, who try to lead everybody from effort and running to the ball and things like that.
Q: Last year was a rough year. This year, you’re now sitting at 0-3. I’m wondering what’s the mental state of the team in your opinion, and how are you viewing the 0-3 at this point?
A: The mental state, obviously, we want to win, So, the mental state is trying to get a win in any way necessary. No one is beating themselves up about it. We’re just taking these as lessons we have to learn from and see how we can improve every week. We can’t do anything about the past or the past games. We can only do something about who we play this week, which is the Rams. That’s kind of the mindset that we need to have and that we do have. We’ve been having a good week of practice. Just see where it goes from there.
Q: Patrick (Graham) was talking to us today, and we were asking him about things like getting off the field on third down and miscommunications at times. He kept on saying ‘It’s on me, it’s on me, it’s on me.’ He never threw anybody under the bus. Do players like that, or would you rather some guy say ‘hey, he screwed up’ or whatever?
A: I believe it’s on all of us. We’re all in it together. It shows the kind of person he is, taking it for the team. But in my eyes, it’s on all of us. We just need to have that attitude that we’re getting off no matter what. That’s just how we have to approach every third down. That’s how the attitude has been in practice and that’s how we have to carry it over to the game and that’s how we get off on third down. We don’t want to be last in the league in whatever the statistic says. Our goal is just to do everything we can to get off on that down.
Q: A couple things. First, there was the screen pass against the 49ers and then there was the end around touchdown against the 49ers. It seemed like they had you with some misdirection. Was there a problem with you guys in maybe identifying some stuff? Why did you guys have some trouble in open space touchdowns there?
A: That was good on their part setting those plays up. Obviously, it takes all 11 on defense to stop the ball. One guy out of his gap or out of leverage could lead to things like that. It’s just what we have to find out the next day how that happened and don’t let it happen again.
Q: Then on the other side, I know you won’t be going against him but as a guy who plays defensive line, did you grow up watching a lot of Aaron Donald? Were you an Aaron Donald fan? Have you taken anything from his game?
A: Obviously, he’s an amazing player. Everybody watches him if you play his position. Our game is a little different. Obviously, there are some things that he does well that I can’t put in my game. But I grew up watching him and a lot of other guys. But Sunday, I’ll be going against him. It’ll be fun.
Q: You’re obviously a guy who plays inside. When you play a team like the Rams who run so much outside, how do you still make a big impact on the run game?
A: Just get a knock back, being disruptive, not letting them out-leverage me or attack me and me being the attacker. That’s been the mindset of the whole d-line this week. That’s how we’re going to have to play. Set the edges and make the ball come back inside.