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Transcript: Head Coach Brian Daboll

Eric from BBI : Admin : 6/11/2024 1:36 pm
Head Coach Brian Daboll

June 11, 2024

Q. What did you make of the news you got from Darren Waller earlier this week?

BRIAN DABOLL: Yeah, I would say the first thing with Darren is my concern for him is more of a person than anything. I’m lad he's doing well. Spoke to him yesterday. Communicated with him throughout the off-season.

That's his decision, we were going to respect the decision and give him as much time as he needed. Wish him well. Here for him if he needs anything. That's what happens in the NFL sometimes.

Q. That opens up some cap space. Do you expect to use that and make a splash signing?

BRIAN DABOLL: Yeah, I mean we're always going to try to improve the roster. How that is, I couldn't tell you right now. Obviously, we have some money here, and we'll continue to do what we always do and try to improve any way we can.

Q. You did not have Darren here all spring. This is not coming as a shock that he's not going to be here. What do you think of your tight end room now?

BRIAN DABOLL: They've done a really good job. Tim Kelly been a great addition to our staff. Really does a good job leading those guys. They're all conscientious guys, have good ability.

They can play multiple positions, so it will be a good training camp.

Q. Is Daniel Bellinger someone who you think -- is there another level for him? If so, what is it?

BRIAN DABOLL: Yeah, I would say you try to improve every year, so not just specifically Daniel, everybody. That's what he tries to do. Again, a good working group. We will get the pads on here in a month and get ready to go.

Q. When you lose a player, regardless of retirement, injury, do you have to replace them so you have enough numbers to get you through training camp?

BRIAN DABOLL: You're talking about for the position of the tight ends?

Q. Yeah, positioning.

BRIAN DABOLL: We're going to have a couple tight ends here as tryout guys. Get a look those guys. Again, we'll look at it once this gets settled down and over the summer know exactly how many numbers we want. Feel good about our group.

Q. Dabs, you talked in the past about your experience coaching tight ends and the idea -- you were a position coach. How has that changed and is it more challenging nowadays for everything that's asked of a tight end for a young guy like Theo to come in and be ready to have an impact on this team?

BRIAN DABOLL: Yeah, that's a good question. There is a variety of personnel groups you can use. You can play with one tight end, no tight ends, two tight ends, three tight ends, sometimes four tight ends. Depending on the player, you ask them to learn multiple spots.

Most of our guys right now have been trained through Tim (Kelly) to learn two to three spots depending on the personnel group we're in. It's always a challenge when you're learning multiple spots, whether you're young or new. That's the job requirements nowadays.

It's kind of evolved throughout the years, but I think it depends, too, on offensively what personnel groups you want to utilize and how many and all the different positions you ask them to play.

We certainly ask our guys to do a fair amount in terms of learning our system, playing multiple positions, and one time you're the F, one time you're the Z, one time you could be the X, one time you could be the Y. They do a good job of studying it. I would say Angela Baker is doing a really good job with Theo.

She meets with him as much as she can to try to catch him up to speed. He's working at it. He’s a smart kid.

Q. How much was drafting Theo because of the Waller situation?

BRIAN DABOLL: We just drafted Theo because we thought he was a good player. He has good measurables. Obviously you know what his testing was. He’s smart. We thought he would be a good addition to our team.

Q. Dabs, will we see Daniel Jones in team drills the next couple days?

BRIAN DABOLL: I think we'll keep him out of team drills, continue the rehab process. He's really right on point with where he needs to be.

But in terms of the team, we'll keep him out here the next few days and get him ready to go for training camp.

Q. The expectation is that he will be fully cleared for training camp?

BRIAN DABOLL: Yeah, we'll see. He's rehabbing, he’s right where he needs to be. We will give him another month here, but he's making progress.

Q. With this camp, is this a continuation of the teaching camp of OTAs or are you kind of pushing towards the next step?

BRIAN DABOLL: Yeah, it really is. No pads, got to make sure you take care of one another the way you practice. Same kind of rules apply in terms of practice.

What we'll do is have some extra meetings. We’ll meet after practice, go through the tape. We’ll have a couple of NFL meetings we'll do now rather than in training camp. Most of the stuff -- we had an extra walk-through today. Most of everything else is consistent.

We'll only do team stuff today, so be it’ll be individual, it’ll be team. Won't do 7-on-7 today. That's no reflection of DJ or where he is at.

He's not too happy about it, but we're going to go all team today.

Q. Brian, from what you've seen of Malik Nabers at this point, is he the same guy you saw on film or has he surprised you in any way?

BRIAN DABOLL: No, obviously we thought he was a good player where we selected him. He’s got a lot to learn. Was a productive player at LSU. Has a long way to go here. Kind of what we talked about with the tight ends, along with the receivers now, he has to learn multiple positions. He is making strides every day and we’ll try to get him ready to go for training camp.

Q. How does Lawrence Cage factor into the tight end equation for you guys?

BRIAN DABOLL: Yeah, I've been very happy with Cage. Probably one of the most improved players throughout the off-season that we've had relative to playing fast, being able to use his speed, not thinking, being in the system here for a little bit.

I’ve been very happy with his progress. He's got a great schedule. He has come in really early. He's taken to the coaching from Tim Kelly. He has had a really good camp.

Q. Will we see anything from Evan Neal other than walk throughs?

BRIAN DABOLL: No, you’ll see him at training camp.

Q. Did he have a setback?

BRIAN DABOLL: Yeah, he's kind of about the same. He's about the same. We're going to back off him here and hopefully we can get -- the plan is right now as of whatever today is, is I think we should have everybody ready to go for training camp, which is important.

So we're going to be smart with a few people. Then hopefully once training camp, July 24th, hits, unless something happens between now and then, hopefully we'll have everybody.

Q. Did he ever enter 11 on 11 on the days we weren't here?

BRIAN DABOLL: No, he's mixed in. He has done some various things. We thought for the next couple days, we'll back off on him.

Q. We talked to Carm (Bricillo) once briefly when the assistant coaches were here. What has told you that you got the hire right, that the offensive line under him is going to be in the vision you want?

BRIAN DABOLL: Well, obviously we're focused on what we're doing right now. He's a very good teacher. I think him and James (Ferentz), I mentioned James before as well, former player, just retired. Have done a good job implementing how they coach, have given them good techniques. Now, you can evaluate movement skills, you can evaluate knowing what to do. The true evaluation is going to come when we're in pads and those guys have to move people and protect the quarterback.

In terms of his communication style, his teaching, he's done a nice job.

Q. We have only seen Josh Ezeudu at tackle this spring. What do you like about him there? Is that because that's where you think he's best suited or because of the numbers?

BRIAN DABOLL: We thought we would give him an opportunity here to play tackle this spring and let him hone in on both sides and continue to work and improve.

He's made good strides. We’ll use him here at tackle next couple days as well.

Q: How many tryouts are here?

BRIAN DABOLL: Just a couple guys.

Q. You said you expect everybody at training camp. Does that include Aaron Robinson?

BRIAN DABOLL: Yeah, I'm hoping. That's correct. He's rehabbing, he’s working. Again, that's the plan. Whether that comes to fruition or not, that's what I'm expecting, for everybody to be out here. Unless there is some type of setback, which you know there can be, whether it's in the rehab process.

DJ is taking the whole group down and working out with them here in a few weeks, setting something up. Hopefully everybody gets to do that and be ready to go here in July.

Q. Where is Aaron at though?

BRIAN DABOLL: He’s making progress.

Q. Drew Lock, the amount of teamwork he's done, are you impressed with where he is now compared to where you started this spring? Is there anything he can do these two days in the spring to turn training camp into a competition rather than “I'm just the backup”?

BRIAN DABOLL: We’ve talked about that. He understands his role. I think he's come a long way. There is a lot to learn playing that position. There is a lot of vocabulary, there’s new plays. One word means something to him in another system. He's been to a few different places. He has been a true pro.

He has definitely improved since he has gotten here. Good to get two more work days here with the guys that he might not necessarily get as many reps with once we get to training camp.
In addition to his poor play  
OBJ_AllDay : 6/11/2024 1:48 pm : link
The injuries to Neal have got to be concerning at this point.
Honestly, my expectations for Neal are very low  
Rick in Dallas : 6/11/2024 2:04 pm : link
He is injury prone with bad technique .
But I hope I’m 100% wrong and he becomes a solid RT.
Neal Looks Like He's On His Way To Be  
Trainmaster : 6/11/2024 2:12 pm : link
Ereck Flowers 2.0

I hope I'm wrong.

RE: Honestly, my expectations for Neal are very low  
Ira : 6/11/2024 2:18 pm : link
In comment 16534662 Rick in Dallas said:
He is injury prone with bad technique .
But I hope I’m 100% wrong and he becomes a solid RT.

I think that's about where most of us are on Neal.
Neal and Ezeudu  
DaveInTampa : 6/11/2024 2:19 pm : link
Not sure if there is any connection to Neal not being ready and Ezeudu apparently being moved to T. I wish the reporter who asked about Ezeudu would have followed up and asked if he is ONLY getting snaps at T or if he will get snaps at both G and T.
RE: Neal and Ezeudu  
UberAlias : 6/11/2024 2:43 pm : link
In comment 16534677 DaveInTampa said:
Not sure if there is any connection to Neal not being ready and Ezeudu apparently being moved to T. I wish the reporter who asked about Ezeudu would have followed up and asked if he is ONLY getting snaps at T or if he will get snaps at both G and T.
Again, I would not automatically assume Ezeudu has been moved to T. He has worked at tackle AND Guard. In the team portion, he is seeing time with the 1s as RT with both Ezeudu and Nelson out. That doesn't mean he isn't also working at Guard and it doesn't even mean he's being groomed as the swing tackle. Most assume that would be Nelson, but he's been rehabbing.
We better hope the other tackles get healthy for camp  
UberAlias : 6/11/2024 3:32 pm : link
If we're somehow stuck with Ezeudu starting at OT, God help us.
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