Head Coach Brian Daboll
August 14, 2023
Q: Do you have any updates on the injured guys?
A: I do. Would you like to hear them?
Q: Yes, please.
A: (Offensive lineman) Devery Hamilton will not practice today. (Guard) Tyre Phillips will not practice today. (Tackle) Evan Neal will be non-contact, he’s still in the protocol. (Wide receiver) Collin Johnson will not practice today.
Q: Is he (Collin Johnson) alright though or is that a long-term thing?
A: I don’t think it’s long term, but I’m not a doctor either. Right now, I think he is not practicing today. (Running back) Gary Brightwell will not practice today. (Inside linebacker) Cam Brown will not practice today. (Defensive lineman) Ryder (Anderson) is still out. And then (defensive lineman) D.J. will be off of PUP, Davidson.
Q: What about (cornerback Cor’Dale) Flott?
A: He’s practicing.
Q: (Cornerback) Nick McCloud?
A: McCloud won’t.
Q: (Punter) Jamie (Gillan) is alright?
Q: You said McCloud won’t, right?
A: He will not today.
Q: (Inside linebacker Darrian) Beavers. Did he not play as part of his rehab program?
A: Yeah, like I said, I don’t know if you were there or not. Yeah, that was more the plan, but he’ll go today. Everybody else should be out there in some form or fashion.
Q: We know you take (quarterback) Daniel’s (Jones) input into the offense quite a bit, at least in terms of last year, this year. Do you do that with (running back) Saquon (Barkley) too? Because he has been pretty vocal about wanting to be more than just a check down receiver and it seems like you guys have included specific routes that aren’t just like he’s the checkdown guy, he’s an in route, in rhythm, a target.
A: I’d say our coaches and players work together really in everything. We are always going to do what we think we need to do for that game. That’s how we always approach it.
Q: Do you see that as a potentially untapped part of his skillset?
A: I just think it depends on week to week, what we want to do.
Q: How do you work with players, in terms of, they have a really good performance you don’t let them get too high and if they have a bad performance, you kind of keep them even keeled and focused on tomorrow?
A: I think that’s what we always try to do here is to try to be focused on today, get better. You are going to go through a lot during an NFL season and there hasn’t been one in 23 years that I haven’t, so you are going to have down times; you are going to have up times. You have to really stay focused on your day-to-day improvement and regardless of what happens the play before, the week before, you have to have a positive mindset, move on with the right approach for the next play or the next series or the next practice. Try to eliminate any roller coaster riding that the NFL usually tries to get you in.
Q: Do you talk to these guys and say ‘look, you had a bad practice, you had a bad game, we are not going to make a decision based on that one?’
A: I think I try to be as transparent as I can with everybody. The goal is to be consistent, consistently improving. That’s really the goal. You are going to have, everybody is, myself more than probably anybody, is going to have a bad play, a bad decision, a bad day. You have to be laser focused on what your craft is and how you do it to the highest level.
Q: Sounded like you guys thought you got a lot out of the joint practices, now you go forward, it’s just basically you guys and the games between now and the start of the season. Do you have to structure anything differently or do you look to structure anything differently for your practices to kind of get out of what maybe you are not going to get out during the week from going against another team?
A: Yeah, I think you have a plan of what you want to do at the start of camp but that evolves as your team evolves on situational football, more things that you need to get that maybe you didn’t get in the game. Revisit it on a day-to-day basis. We have the layouts of what we want to do but make adjustments where we need to make adjustments. We are still in training camp mode, we will be in training camp mode here for the next couple of weeks so a lot to work on.
Q: (Offensive lineman) Marcus McKethan, I guess you will be ramping him up. Last summer if I recall, cross-trained at guard and tackle, is that something you kind of plan on doing again this year?
A: Yeah, I mean I think anytime you can have linemen that are flexible and that can play multiple spots, you try to do that early on in camp and throughout camp because you never know. If you are not a starter, you are going to have multiple roles so we will put him in there, move him around a little bit. We will see how it goes today and then we will talk about what we do going forward but he will do a little bit more today than he is.
Q: Nacho’s (Defensive tackle Rakeem Nu ñez-Roches) back today?
A: Yep. He will be doing something.
Q: Is (wide receiver Jalin) Hyatt’s wrist any kind of concern?
Q: How do you look at the wide receiver competition and what’s important to you when it comes to the back end of that?
A: Still, I’d say it’s ongoing right now. We have got a lot, a couple more weeks of practice, a few more games, so just still kind of let them compete it out and kind of see who rises to the top.
Q: Do you like to have a wide variety of types there and how much does special teams for you play into that?
A: I think it all plays into it. We are not at that point right now, roster cutting and all those things, we are still in the middle of training camp, so these guys are going to have ample opportunity. The more you can do, usually the better it is. Whether you can play in the kicking game or not, create another role for yourself but we are still in the thick of it.
Q: Just having the one cut, do you like that? Can it get too crowded out here or is there no such thing?
A: Well, this is the first time for me doing it. I don’t really think about it too much, just whatever it is, it is.
Q: You think you will like that in third preseason when you don’t, sometimes you run out of bodies there.
A: It’s the same for everybody so just play by whatever rules it is.
Q: What makes (wide receiver) Cole Beasley reliable and a good route runner?
A: He’s quick and experienced, has good hands. He’s done it for a while, he’s been a pretty consistent player.
Q: Now that we are a few weeks from all the contract stuff that happened with Saquon, how have you seen him in camp? Is he the same guy he always is, is he any different at all?
A: Same guy, yep.
Q: Which means what to you, like same guy?
A: Comes in here, does his job, works hard, knows what to do, practices well, good teammate.
Q: After watching the film, it looked like from a layman’s view and the PFF stuff, your backup tackles Korey (Cunningham) and Matt (Peart) had some scuffle in there, in terms of just pressures allowed, any concerns coming out of that about your depth at tackle?
A: No, it was the next part of the process. We will get to go out there and get some live reps. Again, we all have improvement to do, that’s what we will try to do this week.
Q: What did you like about (running back Eric) Gray coming out of Oklahoma? Does it seem like he plays faster than the 4.63 that he got timed at?
A: He was a productive player for them. Did a good job with the ball in his hands. Had some pass receiving skills, open field running. Again, I told you guys this before, we will get him reps returning as many kicks as we can but again, a long way to go like the other young guys.
Q: You have obviously taken the time with your guys on the interior defensive line, whether they have been banged up or coming off of PUP, a guy that seemingly stood out last week was (defensive tackle) Jordon Riley. Just curious what you have seen from that, sometimes guys get thrown in with the big boys and don’t necessarily step up, what has allowed him to step up?
A: I think he’s made steady improvement. He’s got a good room to be in for a young player with the veterans (defensive lineman) Dex(ter Lawrence II), (defensive lineman) Leo(nard Williams) and Nacho and (defensive lineman) A’Shawn (Robinson). They are really invaluable in there for young players. And then (defensive line coach) Dre (Andre Patterson) and (assistant defensive line coach Bryan) Cox do a good job. He’s come along slowly, he’s improved every day since he has been here. Thought he showed out well for himself, played a lot of snaps. He’s in a good spot relative to the room he’s in, the people that he can learn under. He’s got the right mindset.
Q: What’s the biggest growth you have seen in him? Or biggest steps.
A: He’s really just improved day-by-day. Come into this league, it’s all new and then you are inside, he’s big, he’s long, he can bend. He’s learning stuff every day from Dre and Cox but then I’d say those four veterans they are really good teammates and they take those guys underneath their wings and talk to them a lot and he’s done a good job of listening and just trying to get better each day.
Q: Do you have any other update on the other PUP guys? (Wide receiver) Wan’Dale (Robinson) and (cornerback) Aaron Robinson? This week, either guy?
A: I’d just say making progress, but no timetable yet.