NYG Postgame (vs. Jets) Transcripts: Head Coach Brian Daboll
August 26, 2023
Q: How quickly do you shift into regular-season mode?
A: Well, there's work to be done here. (General manager) Joe (Schoen) and I, the coaches and scouts, we’ll meet and then we'll talk about the things we need to talk about, and we'll have a week, but we’re really just going to focus on tomorrow, just watch the tape and then we'll have our discussions.
Q: What went into the decision to get (safety/inside linebacker) Isaiah Simmons out there on such a short time, turnaround?
A: I think one, it's good to just give some information to a player that comes in that quick and see how they handle it. So, he came, he was in, he was in early, he was meeting with Eggs (inside linebackers coach John Egorugwu). We only gave him a limited role but wanted to get him out there just to get his feet wet in the defense. Again, it was only, not very many defenses but he studied hard, and he was ready to go.
Q: Do you have an early impression of what you saw from him?
A: I don’t. No, I really haven’t seen too much. He played six or seven plays, maybe.
Q: How about playing (wide receiver) Sterling (Shepard)? Starting him, giving him punt returns and things like that. What was the thought process behind that?
A: Play him and give him a punt return. That was our thought process.
Q: Did you just want to see a few more snaps from him this summer?
A: Yeah. Again, he's been returning punts, catching them for us. So, I thought it would be good to get him one in a game.
Q: Why not give (running back Eric) Gray as much time back there as you can?
A: He’s had a lot. Look, you never know if (wide receiver Sterling) Shep(ard) is going to do it, either. It’s something we started working on last week. So, I wanted him to get out there and fair catch one. He wasn't going to return it, but just kind of get under the lights, do it in a game setting. You never know when you might do it.
Q: As you say, there's a lot of work to be done in the next couple of days. In a game like this, it's the last preseason game, do you find yourself maybe saying during the game, ‘This guy is going to make it; this guy is not going to make it,’ or you don't go there?
A: No, no. I mean, we had a lot of guys go down tonight, so I thought the coaches did a good job of just trying to scramble and put some stuff together where we were. I mean, we were out there with four linebackers and three DBs. We only had three DBs at one point there. So, we were teaching the linebacker to play a safety spot, but I thought those guys that played competed hard. Proud of those guys.
Q: What position or maybe positions stand out to you that perhaps may be the toughest to sort through here the next couple of days?
A: Yeah, it's still going to—probably not prepared to answer that tonight. We'll have a lot of discussions here in the next couple days.
Q: Did anybody really help themselves tonight, or is it more the whole camp?
A: Yeah, I think it’s really everything. It’s tonight, but it's an all-encompassing evaluation of really since you've been here. So, we've had a lot of discussions, we're certainly going to have a lot more. That’s what we’ll focus on here the next couple days.
Q: I know you guys put a lot of thought and planning and research into the injuries that you had last year. You’ve come through this training camp, this preseason, pretty clean at the top of your depth chart. Is that a function of that, do you think?
A: Yeah, well, like I’ve said before, those guys do a really good job. I meet with (head athletic trainer) Ronnie (Barnes) and (director of rehabilitation) Leigh (Weiss) and (assistant strength and conditioning coach Mark) Loech(er) and (director of performance) Sam (Coad) on a daily basis. It’s not just kind of the week; we’ve got a lot of games here early in the season, too. So, it's an all-encompassing evaluation of, really, call it the first part of the season back to training camp, and I thought the strength staff, the trainers, sports science, they did a lot of research, they put a lot of work into it. They’ve done a good job, so I just listen to—I input it, and I don't always agree with it. As a coach, you want to be out there all the time, but they certainly had a well thought out process, very detailed, did a really good job with it.
Q: Is there anything specific looking back that you changed this summer?
A: I think each year is different. We’ve changed a bunch. Schedules, times, sleep, rest time, breaks in practice, longer periods at some stuff, shorter on other stuff, longer periods at the end, a ton of stuff that those guys have really dug into and done a good job.
Q: I know he's on the other team, but was it interesting seeing (Jets quarterback Aaron) Rodgers come on the field and the Jet fans going pretty nutty?
A: No. I’ve said before, I’ve got a ton of respect. That guy’s a Hall-of-Fame player, one of the best to ever do it, but I’m not out there looking at people coming out of the tunnel or stuff like that. I’m getting ready to play a game.
Q: What can facing him in a situation like this mean for some of the younger guys?
A: Yeah, I don't know.
Q: Can they learn anything going up against a guy like that?
A: Yeah, I don't know. We'll see.
Q: (Quarterback) Tommy (DeVito) got the bulk of the snaps. How would you assess the way he played and handled himself?
A: I think Tommy's improved since he's been here. So, he's improved in the practices and the meeting room since he first got here. I think he's come a long way and certainly learned a lot. You can tell it's important to him. He’s gone out there and played well and executed when we played. I'm proud of how he’s competed and how he’s improved.
Q: They obviously changed that rule, the third quarterback rule. Does he put himself in that consideration?
A: We’re going to have a bunch of discussions here soon, tonight and tomorrow morning and the next day.