Cornerback James Bradberry
August 4, 2021
Q: What do you think of (Cornerback) Rodarius Williams? The rookie corner looks like he's getting some meaningful snaps and doing some good stuff.
A: I think he has a lot of skill. Now, it's just him getting adjusted to the speed of the NFL and also learning the system. Once he learns the system, I think he'll be able to play even faster.
Q: I know (Cornerback Aaron) Robinson is not on the field, but what have you learned about him from the mental side and just as a player so far?
A: He doesn't talk a whole lot. Of course, when he's in the meeting rooms, he doesn't talk a lot because he's doing a whole lot of listening. I feel like he's very attentive, he listens a lot. He doesn’t really talk a lot honestly, so it's hard to get a good read on him.
Q: We hear all the time about when the pads come on, what kind of work it's going to be with the offensive and defensive linemen, and how that's going to really help them. For someone like you who's trying to perfect this craft, once the pads come on, how does it change for you as a cornerback, and does it give you better work?
A: It really hasn't changed a whole lot. Beforehand when we didn't have pads, I still had to guard the receiver. Of course, the game is a lot less physical on the outside when you’re guarding receivers. It's more about learning route concepts and also just trying to correct your technique and whatnot. So once the pads get on, it really doesn't change a whole lot for a DB.
Q: Back to Aaron Robinson for a second and Rodarius, I mean he's on the field, but you've been a rookie in this league. How important and how much does it hurt a guy like Aaron that he's not on the field? He's coming off surgery. He's not on the field in training camp, and for a rookie, you would think that this is a really important time.
A: I feel like it definitely puts him behind the 8-ball a little bit because he's not on the field getting actual visual reps, but it all depends on how he learns as well. If he learns very quickly, it's not going to be a struggle for him at all. It’s just depending on like how attentive he is and how much he's willing to learn.
Q: What do you remember about your rookie year training camp?
A: Man, it's really a blur because I was trying to keep up with the speed of the game while also learning the defense. I was also with the ones, so the speed of the game and everybody out there knew what they were doing. I was kind of dependent on them to get me the call and kind of put me in the right location and stuff, so it was a big blur. Honestly, I was just doing a whole lot of running around. Then as I learned the system, it started to slow down for me.
Q: When was that? When did you consider that it slowed down and you learned the system?
A: It started slowing down for me like the end of my second year or third year. It took a minute.
Q: Have you been on a little bit of a pitch count the last couple days? Is that just to get other guys more reps because they know who and what you are, or what's the plan there?
A: It's just a lot of DB's and it's hard to get everyone an equal amount of reps. So, somebody has got to lose reps, whether that's the first group, second group, or third group, or the fourth group. Someone has to lose reps and I guess it's just me right now.
Q: Do you not mind a lighter workload? Are you the kind of guy who just always wants to be out there?
A: Even when I have a light workload, I'm still working when it comes to special teams and individuals, so I'm still getting my reps in. If it's not physical, it's going to be mental and I'm cool with either one. It just depends on whatever coach wants me to do.
Q: I wanted to ask you about what you think of yesterday's running and the punishment after the brawl? How do you think the players are responding to it?
A: When you do something that's going to harm the team, especially like during the game, it's going to provoke a penalty, there’s going to be consequences behind that. I just saw it as that was our consequence. Our consequence was to run and do push-ups. And of course, like the physical part, that happens. It’s football, it’s a physical game, so sometimes that happens.
Q: I know the cornerbacks and defensive backs are usually pretty competitive amongst each other, whether it's who's the fastest, or who's the strongest, or who has the most interceptions? I’m wondering if you guys compete to see who's the smartest. It seems like this defense takes a lot of mental power to get a handle on. Do you guys keep track of who's answering the most questions? Who seems to have the biggest grip on the playbook?
A: It's hard to kind of judge who's the smartest when you're in a room like that. But you can just kind of tell how guys go about their business, especially when they're on the field, like when they know what spots they're supposed to be in, and they know like what routes are going to come. You know that guy knows what he's doing, and he's pretty smart. So, I wouldn't say it's a competition, but you definitely start asking the smarter guys around the room a lot more questions.
Q: Are you one of the guys that the other players come to now that you're in your second year in this system?
A: Yeah, I think so. Just me being in my sixth year in the league, young guys are coming in asking questions all the time, so I try to give them the best feedback as possible.