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Transcript: Outside Linebacker Azeez Ojulari

Eric from BBI : Admin : 8/4/2023 3:32 pm
Outside Linebacker Azeez Ojulari

Q. You were frustrated or maybe even distraught at the end of last season that you couldn't stay on the field, and you told us you were going to look into doing some different things. What did you do, what did you change to make sure that you could stay healthy this year? What did you add to your routine?

A: Really just more stretching. More stretching incorporated some yoga into my routine, and those were the main two things that I really added.

Q. Whose idea was the yoga?

A: I talked to some people around, teammates and stuff, but for me, I just wanted better for myself. I just want to do whatever I can to help myself and my team.

Q. Did you add or lose any weight from last year?

A: No, same. Same weight. I don't think the weight was an issue. It's just part of the game.

Q. Did any hydration stuff change?

A: I don't think that was a problem. I think I was well hydrated, just things happen. It's part of football. I'm ready to work this year. I'm ready to go.

Q. Now that you are healthy and out there, is there joy in being able to use your talents and not being impeded by injury?

A: Yes, ma'am. Definitely. It's very exciting to be out here and practice with my teammates and just be available for my team. Just out there working hard every day, just trying to get better.

Q. (Defensive coordinator) Wink (Martindale) has made it clear to us how much he likes your game, pass rushing in particular. What has he shared with you or what have you learned from him about that kind of situation?

A: Yeah, Coach Wink, man, he coached a lot of great players before me. I'm just ready to work and do everything I can to the best of my abilities for the team and for his defense.

Q. Carl Banks I think on his podcast threw out a big number – 15 sacks – as a possibility for you. I think there were only five guys last year who made that number. Do you think that's a possible number?

A: Man, I'm just trying to do what I can for the team or whatever I can, no matter what it is, to just help the team win. However, I can be productive for the team, I'm just trying to do the best I can.

Q. Your sack-efficiency numbers are huge, sacks per snap or sacks per game. DO you ever allow yourself to think, 'If I stayed on the field, that would have been a really huge number?'

A: I don't even try to look at the numbers. At the end of the day, I just want to win and help my team be the best. When I'm out there on the field, (I) just try to be the best I can. Whatever it is, just make plays happen, just try, whatever it is, to help the team win, man, and the defense get better.

Q. Isn't that the best way you can help the team win, by getting a lot of sacks?

A: I mean, that's part of the way. There're other ways – forced fumbles, TFLs, setting the edge. It all works together.

Q. Talk about the excitement or potential of you and (linebacker Kayvon) Thibodeaux playing 17 games together and what it could do for this defense.

A: Yeah, it's very exciting because we work so hard. Every day at practice, we push each other, we battle. We just want to be great. You can see the potential when we're out there practicing, and we just want to make sure we're all ready to go and just ready to fight and win.

Q. I put words in your mouth; I said frustrated or distraught. How would you describe how you felt at the end of last season, not being able to contribute fully?

A: Everything happened for a reason, but it sucked. It's in the past now and I'm focused on this year and put that behind me and (I'm) ready to go this year, for sure.

Q. Wink is always dialing up exotic blitzes for the linebackers. Has he dialed up anything special for you coming off of the edge?

A: No, I feel like there are so many. (Inaudible)
I call him The Natural ....  
Manny in CA : 8/5/2023 10:44 am : link

He's the best pure pass rusher since JPP. Teamed up with Thibodeaux. it's almost unfair.

I think his working on getting more nimble and agile will make him more explosive & keep him from sustaining injuries.
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