Center John Michael Schmitz
What's does it mean to you to be running with the ones a lot here already?
A: Yeah, I mean, no jobs are won, what day are we on? What practice? I mean we are just a couple of practices into fall camp. Right now, my main focus is just to continue to keep getting better each and every day and gain that trust with that o-line room and that offense to just prove that I can be out there, and I can make the calls and just be urgent with it.
Q: Does it mean anything to you, putting you there multiple days in a row like obviously at the beginning you were going back and forth.
A: I don't really kind of focus on that. My main focus is really on just taking that one thing, that you focus on every day, which could be a technique, could just a mental standpoint of it, and just keep getting better at it. That's how I am looking at it.
Q: What was your focus today?
A: My main focus today was to just be loud and be urgent up front. Just continue to keep getting better as an o-line and the main thing for me is to communicate upfront and make sure everyone is on the same page.
Q: What's the biggest thing you have learned so far about the pro game since the pads have come on?
A: You are competing in every single play out there. I am going against some of the best d-line there is. It's just an opportunity to keep getting better and just improve my game out there.
Q: You mention the communication, how has that improved? I know it's only been eight practices but how have you seen that going yourself?
A: I'd say each and every day just gain more confidence out there. Keep getting more confident in my calls and putting the offensive line in a position to succeed out there and me and DJ (Daniel Jones) seeing things the same way as an offense.
Q: I feel like being loud kind of stands out to me. When you said to be loud as one of your focuses. Is that not natural to you or why be loud?
A: In a game you have got fans screaming at you. You are going to have to communicate down the line making sure the left tackle and the right tackle know the call. Just to be loud up front.
Q: Every offensive lineman always says cohesion, the same five guys thinking together is the big thing. You have different guys rotating at center, left guard, right guard, so how is this offensive line going to get on the same page?
A: Not only an offensive line, cohesion isn't whoever starts there the first game. It's collective as a whole, as a whole o-line unit. Making sure everyone is on the same page, knows what we are going to do out there, our mission, our goal at the end of the day.
Q: (Offensive line coach) Bobby Johnson said in the spring that it would be an eye-opener when the pads came on and you had to block (defensive tackle) Dex(ter) (Lawrence II) one-on-one. Has it been an eye-opener for you?
A: Dex is a great player. All-Pro last year. Great opportunity to go against him every day in practice. Continue to perfect my craft, learn from him, and at the end of the day get better.
Q: Your former college coach is under some heat from some of your former teammates saying that he mistreated them, toxic culture. Wondering what your response to that is and where you see what your experience in the program was like.
A: Right now, my main focus is with the New York Giants, with this team. I'm not going to talk on behalf of (Minnesota Head) Coach Fleck. I just have nothing but good things to say about him anyways.
Q: He (Minnesota Head Coach PJ Fleck) said that you are a great guy off the field, but you become this nasty guy on the field. How do you describe that transition that takes over you as you go on the field?
A: It's just when you strap up the helmets and the pads come on. It's kind of just a click. A click of just something that, I don't know, kind of comes naturally now. I don't know how to say it.
Q: Is that your blood (on your jersey) or someone else's blood?
A: Could be both (laughs).
Q: Did you set a goal coming in that 'I want to be the starter on week one?'
A: I would just say the main goal was to help out the New York Giants in any way possible to succeed at their goal. If it was starting, if it was just having an impact, that's all I would say.
Q: Now what would it mean to you if you are the starter on day one?
A: Right now, I am just really focused on continuing to get better. Like I said we are early in camp still. Continuing to just communicate with my offense, and my offensive line, get to know each other more, and build that cohesion up.
Q: Did you get a chance to talk to (tackle), Evan Neal, after practice? He walked off.
A: I did not yet, no. No.
Q: Does the rotation of guards next to you, how does that impact you that you have a different guy to your right and left every day?
A: At the end of the day, I mean you have to be ready. I'd say you just have to be ready for anything. You never know what's going to happen in a game. You never know who is going to be out there. Substitutions can happen, and injuries can happen. You just got to be ready to go.