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Transcript: Head Coach Brian Daboll

Eric from BBI : Admin : 8/8/2023 12:56 pm
Head Coach Brian Daboll

August 8, 2023

Good to be here. Got in last night. Looking forward to a good practice, very appreciative to the Detroit Lions, the Ford family, (Lions Executive Vice President and General Manager) Brad (Holmes), (Lions Head Coach) Dan Campbell, who I have a good relationship with. Looking forward to having a good competitive couple of days here. Excited to be here and with that, I’ll open it up to questions.

Q: How much do you think these two days will help you get an assessment of where your team stands?

A: I think it’s kind of the next step for training camp when you practice against another team. I think there is competitive juices, the coaches have it, the players have it, but we are going to try to practice the right way against a really good team. I think the program that the Lions have and what Dan and Brad have been able to do has really been outstanding so it will be a good test for us.

Q: You said the right way, what does that exactly mean and why sometimes do these joint practices not go the right way?

A: Well, you have a bunch of competitive people that are hitting each other every day but we are going to try and take care of one another, keep people off the ground, stay away from the quarterback. Just practice the right way like you are practicing against your team but again the competitive juices flow but do a good job of respecting them and look forward to that in return.

Q: Is there anything you can learn about your rookies and your young and inexperienced players in this setting that you can’t maybe in practice?

A: Sure, I think there is more competitive juices flowing when you are at another place, against different people, with a different scheme. That’s the next step for them and I know they are excited about it.

Q: Dan mentioned getting a lot of defensive looks thrown at him, is there anything that you are particularly excited to look or excited to see?

A: I’d say everything. I love practicing against another team during training camp. Again, it’s different looks, it’s different matchups. It’s a very competitive two days of practice that I am looking forward to.

Q: As competitive as you are, how much do you adjust to what you see in practice or do you stick to kind of your script as to what you do?

A: You are still in training camp mode, so you are trying to develop as a team. You’re not really scouting in terms of getting ready to go to practice. You are running your plays and maybe trying a couple different things but seeing how the players react in a competitive situation I think is important. Nacho, (DL Rakeem Nuñez-Roches), he won’t go today.

Q: Anybody else won’t go?

A: Not (tackle) Evan (Neal), he is still in protocol.

Q: Just those two?

A: Yep.

Q: What about (defensive lineman) A’Shawn (Robinson) and (offensive lineman) Marcus (McKethan)?

A: They are going to kind of ramp up. They won’t be doing any team stuff but we are going to get them in the individual and some of the stuff that we do so get those guys ramped up.

Q: You and Dan Campbell have known each other for years, what’s your respect level been like for him and how early did you know he had the ability to be a head coach?

A: I have a tremendous amount of respect for Dan as a coach and as a person, him, and his family. He is an outstanding, outstanding guy. He’s got high energy. When we worked together back in 2011, I think it’s well documented his interview. The players I think have a lot of respect for him. He’s a high energy, just a really good coach, a good guy that I have a lot of respect for.

Q: (Outside linebacker) Kayvon Thibodeaux here in his second camp now, second year going and what are you expecting to see out of him that you would like to see as the next step for him?

A: Just get better day by day. He’s had a good camp. This will be good competition for him, Detroit has got an outstanding offensive line and just take it day by day and improve at his craft.

Q. When you have your some of your younger guys going up against some of your premier players on this team, I’m thinking of when (center John Michael) Schmitz (Jr.) goes against (defensive lineman) Dex(ter Lawrence II) or anybody who goes up against (tackle) Andrew (Thomas), when you get into a setting like this, is it almost like, ‘You know what, we saw them against our guys, it’s even more interesting to see them against other guys who might not be at that level?’

A: Yeah, I think it's just the next step of our process of this is why we planned on doing it, to get good work, to evaluate them against different players. There’s a lot of players out here competing for an opportunity and for a job and we'll be evaluating all of them.

Q. Do you like the fact that this is against a team that seems to be on the rise? They’re picked to win the division, so it’s a test in that way, too.

A: Yeah, look, this is an outstanding football team that I think has done a really good job the past few years they've been here. They've added a lot of great pieces. I think their draft class, the players that they drafted, we did a lot of work on them, and it’ll be interesting to see those guys. They're all smart, tough, dependable guys that were really good football players, dynamic. (Running back Jahmyr) Gibbs is an unbelievable player, and (linebacker Jack) Campbell, and (safety Brian) Branch and (tight end Sam) LaPorta... I mean, they did a really good job and I’ve got a lot of respect for how they're doing their things.

Q. Is there anything that some of these players can do in the next two days that will affect the way you use them on Friday? If you've seen enough, you don't need to see as much, that kind of thing.

A: I'd say I'm worried about today and we'll revisit that in the next couple days.

Q. Last year you did the joint practices with the Jets, you ended up picking up (safety) Jason (Pinnock) and (tight end) Lawrence (Cager) off of their roster. Is there an added bonus here as well that you can potentially scout guys that could be a part of this team?

A: Yeah, absolutely. You get a look at a whole other roster. So, I know our scouting department will be here and be evaluating the players, not just our players how they do, but also Detroit's players. I think it works well for us.

Q. How’s today going to be structured? Is it going to look like a typical practice?

A: Yeah, it’ll be on the two fields. We'll start out on our field, and they’ll be on their field and then the defense will travel to their offensive field, their defense will come over to our offensive field and it’ll be pretty similar to what you're used to seeing at our practices. We worked well together in terms of coming up with a structure that we think will serve well for both teams.

Q. I’ve seen some joint practices that have 1s versus 2s, that kind of thing. Do you believe in kind of going 1s on 1s?

A: Yeah, no, you’ll see that. You’ll see that.

Q. Did you and Campbell have lots of discussions about how you want to do it today?

A: Yeah, you talk about that in the spring a little bit once you find out you’re playing in the preseason and what we want to do and then sports science gets involved and my assistant and his assistant. There's a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes of trying to get as a productive two days as we can.
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