Cornerback Adoree' Jackson
Q: I'm curious what it was like back there returning punts yesterday?
A: Catching punts was more like a nostalgic feeling for me. Just being able to be back there had me feeling like when I was back at SC (University of Southern California) or when I was returning my rookie year at Tennessee. It was fun, it was one of those things where I always remember when (USC safety) Su'a Cravens did it, and he barley caught punts when he went back there and caught with us, it was like riding a bike- second nature. To finally get a real game feel, like two years – that was a nice feeling.
Q: What about this notion that a lot of people say you're too valuable on defense to put back there? What do you think about the injury risk, the added injury risk of being in that position?
A: I appreciate the thought, but at the same time – I love playing the game, I love having fun. It's something I've always been doing. If that's the case, I've been doing it probably since Pop Warner, high school, SC. SC let me play all three ways, so. Did it a little bit in the league. I feel like just being able to go back there having fun, enjoying what I'm doing, but also just being smart at the same time.
Q: That being smart point – did the coaches give you any tips? Like be a little conservative here, we don't need you taking a big shot or?
A: No. They let me be me but at the end of the day, understanding that I'm not being too extra for short returns or worse. Just going out there, doing my job, catching the punt and trying to get what I can get. We're not forcing anything, really.
Q: How big was it to get some takeaways yesterday? One of the things (safety) Xavier (McKinney) always talks about is after games where you guys don't get takeaways – when you don't, he gets upset about that. How nice was it to get some takeaways in the first game you don't have him available?
A: It was huge, especially having those takeaways happen in the red zone at the time that they did, really game-changing plays. Just to get turnovers in general is a blessing and trying to play complimentary football, help out the offense, help out special teams and vice versa. They're making plays, so we're just trying to compliment them. We get them in the red zone coming in clutch – that was pretty huge.
Q: What was Xavier like on the sideline yesterday?
A: He was like a mini coach. He was out there pep-talking everybody up. Just being a positive word and giving affirmations and just trying to give insight of what he sees, what he knows off his film study and be an extra ear for us out there.
Q: Do you feel like in the second half these last eight games that you guys do need to get more takeaways defensively? You've done a lot of good things in the red zone but is that one of the emphasis that you guys had coming out of the bye?
A: I think our emphasis every week is to try to get takeaways and try to get our hands on the ball whether it's forcing a fumble or interception. As a defense, that's one of the best things that you can do is get a takeaway.
Q: You're a guy who never comes off the field. What kind of mindset is that? You're used to doing that but there's a certain fitness that is required running with these guys play after play after play and never getting a break. Could you use a break or do you like being in 60-70 snaps?
A: I'm just out there playing and having fun. It's kind of like being at practice. You just go out there, get all the reps that you can get exerting yourself, really, at practice so that when the game comes you try to make the practice harder and strain yourself a lot harder than what may happen in the game. For us when we're out there, there's never a thought of needing a break, whatever it may be. Just go out there and keep competing for however long it takes.
Q: Do you feel that the Monday through Friday stuff prepares you for Sunday like you said? Or is there a time where you're going to need to take a step back during the week so you can play every snap on Sunday?
A: I think for us, taking care of our bodies the way that we do – hydrating, getting sleep, eating right and then getting the lifts in. Right after the game getting that soreness, that tightness or whatever it is out of your body to get you back going and get you back moving and feeling good. I think the coaching staff, strength staff, (athletic) trainers and nutritionist do a great job helping us get throughout the week.
Q: Is that something you knew coming into the league? A lot of times rookies are 20 years old, they feel like they can run around all day and maybe they don't do that. Did you do that then? Did you have to learn that? Is that something you can teach a guy like (safety) Dane (Belton), who played every snap yesterday and maybe doesn't know that yet?
A: It was told to me. When you're young, your body feels young at the end of the day. It's something that you gradually learn. Everybody has their own routine or regiment of things that they do. As rookies coming in, they do a great job at the college level to help prepare. I think there's some things that you learn, and you just add from different vets to see what they do, see what they use and try to implement it to your routine.
Q: You mentioned what Xavier was like on the sideline, what was it like not having him on the field?
A: It was kind of like he was still there in a sense. Having him come to the sideline, being able to chop it up with him, seeing him with is little headset in pumped up. It's kind of like he was still out there with us at the end of the day. At the same time, we're still trying to – we have this thing where we try to hold each other accountable and play for one another and not disappoint our brothers. Even though he wasn't out there, I was trying to not disappoint him on the sideline.
Q: How is it different when the ball is snapped? Not having him, having a rookie play back there and having (safety) Julian (Love) play deep more. Did things change for you at all?
A: Starts off the week with communication. I feel like we do a great job throughout the week communicating, seeing the things that we look and how we are going to play certain things throughout the game. Having that same accord and being on the same page going throughout the week helps when we get to game day.