C Nick Gates
October 30, 2020
Q: Just curious what yesterday was like for you. Kind of walk us through when you found out you had to stay home and what the day was like.
A: They called me at 6:15 and told me what was going on and asked me a couple questions about when do you think you could have been in contact with Will [Hernandez] and things like that. They have those contact tracers that we wear, they can see who’s by [near] who. They don’t know what we were doing but they can tell who’s by who. Trying to see what everybody was doing around each other.
Q: Were you guys in the facility together on Wednesday I take it?
A: No, It was Tuesday. Tuesday was the day. We came in Monday and watched film, Tuesday we had practice and think we were eating lunch or something I can’t remember, it was a couple days ago.
Q: Have you been in touch with Will? How’s he doing from what you understand?
A: He’s doing good. He’s bummed he can’t play, and it sucks. I’m not going to speak for him or anything, but I think he is doing good.
Q: If you end up playing alongside a guy like Shane Lemieux, a rookie, how do you feel like he has progressed and how much confidence you have in him next to you?
A: I have all the confidence in the world in Shane. He’s a smart player, he’s a tough player. He’s proven to me and the whole o-line and coach Colombo he can play football. He’s going to be a good player. I’m excited to see what he can do when he gets in there. I’m excited to play next to him.
Q: Back to what you were previously talking about. What was the uncertainty like last night kind of waiting for your results to come back, not sure if you would be able to practice today or not? Wondering whether you would be able to play in the game? What was your mind like through that time?
A: Just trying to stay positive and keep being optimistic about it. Try to stay positive and control what I can control. Try to get ready for the game and do the best I can to make myself ready if I was able to go. It looks like I’m going to be able to so just stay on track.
Q: Can you talk a little bit about that defensive front of the Bucs. It looks like they do a lot of tricky things and their really tough up front. What do you see in them and where is the biggest challenge for you coming from that group?
A: They’re a really good group, their front seven is really good. They have good linebackers with [Devin] White and [Lavonte] David, they fly around and the make tackles. The down guys, they try to take two and let their linebackers make the plays. They’re just a tough defense.
Q: Do they do a lot disguising of their defense?
A: I wouldn’t say they disguise a lot. When they are going to bring what they’re going to bring, they bring it. You know what they’re going to bring, and they want you to beat them. That’s what I noticed with film. When the safety rolls down, a lot of times he’s coming.
Q: When they call you at 6:15 on Thursday, did they say stay home? Take a test and then go home?
A: We had meetings over zoom, they zoomed us into meetings. We were online with zoom on the computer. I think it was around 9:30-10, I drove up and they walked out. I couldn’t go in the facility or go into the testing center. I drove up and they came out and swabbed my nose and I drove home.
Q: Did you have to take another test today?
A: This morning I came back, and I had to take two tests. I took the normal test and I took the rapid test. I think the rapid test takes 16 minutes to come back. I was on my way back home to do more zoom meetings this morning and they told me I was negative so I could come in.
Q: Were you sitting there thinking we have to get healthy because it’s going to be tough if Daniel [Jones] is playing behind a group that really doesn’t have a lot of experience.
A: I can’t control if I was sick or not. If I was sick, I was sick, if I’m not then I can come back and play. I was trying to be positive and I was like I hope I’m not sick, I hope I’m not positive and things like that so I can help the team.
Q: When you’re in situation like that, when you hear the news today, okay you tested negative. Do you have any reservations about coming back and practicing? You saw the Tennessee Titans do it earlier this year where they were kind of some positive test, they worked remotely that entire week. I’m wondering as a team and players, how much you guys thought okay maybe this is a little dangerous or maybe we shouldn’t do this or should do this. How do you weigh those things?
A: I just trust the trainers and the experts and what they say. They said you had passed two tests or one the one day and two the next day. They said I was good. If they think I’m good and the experts say I’m alright to go, then I trust them.