Center Nick Gates
September 8, 2021
Q: Were you surprised it all that your name was rattled off by (Head) Coach (Joe Judge) as far as the captains?
A: Yeah, no, definitely a surprise. I mean I’ve been in a couple of meetings with the guys and everything, but I was definitely surprised. I’m real honored to be a part of the guys and that the guys see me as that kind of person. I’ve just got to keep coming to work and keep doing what I’m doing to show them why they picked me.
Q: What does it say about your journey? I remember back in your second year in the locker room, and you talked about, ‘I’ve just got to do what I’ve got to do in order to not get cut every week.’ To get to this point, is there any time that you can take a step back and appreciate how far you’ve come?
A: I mean, right now I’m getting the chills. It’s an honor just to be a captain, especially for this great organization the Giants have. Just the people that have come before me that are captains, just to be able to be a part of that legacy, it’s awesome. I’m really excited and really honored.
Q: Since training camp started, people have had an eye on (Running Back) Saquon’s (Barkley) progress. He was working along to the side, but now that he’s been back in practice, what are you seeing out of him? Are you seeing similar skills that you saw last year before he got hurt?
A: You know, he’s just working every day to get better and get back on the field. I don’t know what his thing’s going to be on Sunday – how many he’s playing or what he’s doing, but I know he’s working hard to get back on the field and be able to compete with us out there.
Q: As far as the entire offense, psychologically, what kind of a lift would it be if he were to be cleared and he was out there Sunday?
A: I mean, Saquon’s a freakish athlete. He can make little runs turn into 60, 70, 80-yard runs for six points. It’s always great to have him out there. Hopefully, we can get him out there so he can compete with us.
Q: What about (Quarterback) Daniel Jones makes you guys confident internally? Like he just said his goal is not even individual, it’s just about winning. So, why is he your winning franchise quarterback?
A: Just the way he prepares and the way he comes to work every day. You know he’s going to be prepared no matter what is thrown at him. He watches film more than anybody. He’s in here at 5:30 in the morning and doesn’t leave till 8:30, 9 o’clock at night. He’ll be prepared. That’s what everybody loves about him. You know he’s going to come to work, and he’ll pack his lunch pail and he’s going to be ready.
Q: When he talks to us, he’s very close to the vest. Is he any different with you guys?
A: What do you mean?
Q: Well, he doesn’t give us much, let’s say.
A: I feel like not a lot of us give you guys much to write about (laughs). But that’s just Daniel. I wouldn’t say he’s quiet, but that’s just Daniel. He loosens up a little bit, but what you see is kind of what you get from Daniel.
Q: How big of a deal would it be – you’ve been at center, but when you establish a rapport with a QB, if you were to switch that up and change centers, how much does that change the offense that a different person is there working with the QB when you’ve spent so much time on that?
A: I think (Head) Coach (Joe Judge) is getting us ready and getting everybody on the same page. They’re trying to make it as smooth as possible. We’re rotating enough out there right now. I don’t think it’ll be a problem if it has to happen.
Q: (Guard) Ben Bredeson, how do you get him up to speed? Like even if you’re going to play one snap next to a guy who just got here, how much of a challenge is that? What are the hurdles to clear before you do that?
A: Oh, he’s a smart dude. He already knows the playbook pretty much pretty well. If he doesn’t, he asks a question, ‘Hey Nick, what do I got here?’ I’m usually pretty, ‘Hey, we got this.’ He knows basically the gist of the calls and everything and if he needed anything, it’d be, ‘Hey, we got this call, this is going to be it,’ and he’d be like, ‘Okay, got it.’ He works hard getting in the playbook and learning it.
Q: You guys have taken a lot of grief this preseason. Are you guys just champing at the bit to get out there on Sunday?
A: Oh, definitely. It’s exciting to get out there on game day and compete every day and show what we’ve been doing for what the past five, six weeks out here and finally get to put it on camera and on the field and just go have fun with the guys.
Q: You guys kind of laid down the foundation last year in your first year under (Head Coach) Joe (Judge). In your mind do you kind of have to make the playoffs now for this to be a successful year for you personally?
A: You know we’re just going to take it one game at a time. Just try to win each rep of each game and just take it one week at a time.