Defensive Lineman Leonard Williams
Q: On a Week 1 win…
A: Just go back to the process. That's something that we've been harping on since we've been in the building, since OTAs. That's something that (Head Coach Brian Daboll) and the players have all bought into – that it's not really the results, it's the process. I think we know as a team that although we got the win and we're happy and excited to start the season off fast, we won by one point. There's a lot of stuff that we have to clean up, and there's a lot of things that we are going to have to do to continue to win, and we're not going to buy into the hype and all that type of things.
Q: The defense, in your mind, do you think you have to play much better than that?
A: Yeah, for sure. I think we did a good job for the most part stopping the run. Especially a team like that that harps on running the ball. For the most part, I think we shut down (Tennessee Running Back) Derrick Henry. He's obviously going to get his plays and get his yards, he's a great player. This transition from Week 1 to Week 2 is very important for all teams around the league, and I think that's when good teams make the biggest jump in assignment.
Q: What does it mean for you to be able to play in MetLife Stadium for the home opener?
A: It means a lot. We need to do a good job this year of bringing back that home field advantage. It starts with winning, it starts with this weekend, and we're going to try to get that going.
Q: Have you had a chance to watch the Panther's rookie left tackle (Ikem Ekwonu) on tape? What do you think?
A: Yeah, I watched a little bit of him. I see they have a lot of moving pieces. They have the guy from the Rams, 63 (Austin Corbett), he's over there playing right guard now, and It think they moved their right tackle to left guard. I feel like because they have some moving pieces, we are going to try to take advantage of their interior offensive line.
Q: Last week, we talked about Henry leading up to the game. Is (Carolina Running Back Christian) McCaffery a similar focus this week?
A: They're definitely different type of backs. McCaffery is really good in space, he's a very shifty back. He's also a screen, draw type of running back. He's really effective in the passing game as well. It's definitely a different focus on a guy like McCaffery.
Q: What about (Carolina Quarterback) Baker (Mayfield)? What do you in him getting outside and plays on the run?
A: He's definitely a guy that if you let get heated up, he can make plays, be effective and he can do all the things that you want in a quarterback. At the same time, if we get on him early and often, we can get him frustrated and make him make mistakes. He's known for getting a lot of balls batted down, so we put a lot of emphasis on the d-line and guys rushing the quarterback to get their hands up, knock some balls down. Also, he drops back pretty deep for an NFL quarterback.
Q: When a quarterback drops back, what is the effect on the line? It gives him more space to throw or what?
A: Yeah, you're just used to quarterbacks in the NFL stepping up more when they feel that pressure whereas a quarterback like Baker Mayfield, he wants to make a play, so sometimes he will drop back even deeper and scramble out the back. As a defensive line, sometimes we don't mind that because it kind of gives us another bite at the apple as long as we keep hustling.