Head Coach Robert Saleh, 11.17

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Opening Statement…

Alright, injuries real quick for y’all. Billy Turner, he’s going to be out. Chazz Surratt, he’s going to be out. Sam Eguavoen is dealing with the hip, he’s going to be out. Duane Brown will not be activated this week and then obviously, Kenny Yeboah first weekend, he won’t be activated either. Then everyone else, we’re still working in the questionable role, but feel good about everybody else playing.


Zack Rosenblatt, The Athletic: Is Garrett (Wilson) one of those questionable ones?

He will show up on the injury report, yes.

Connor Hughes, SNY: With Duane (Brown), I know you’re pretty confident that when he was activated, it wasn’t going to take too long for the 21-day window. Was it just taking longer than you expected or is he getting pretty close?

We just need constant communication, which he’s been. He’s been awesome and he’s working through it and there’s just some things that there’s not 100% comfort with. Again, he’s been working his tail off trying to get this done and trying to alleviate himself of all the different pain that he’s having, but we’ll continue to work with him and see. I don’t know if, you guys know me, I’m always optimistic that it’s always going to go faster than it should, but obviously, there’s a process for it.


Brian Costello, The New York Post: Is there any worry about Garrett being available Sunday?

Optimistic. We’ll see, honestly, I’m not going to speak for him or the docs, but there’s a couple of hurdles he has to clear.


Connor Hughes, SNY: You have been though with guys who have been questionable before, you said ‘oh, yeah, he’s good’ and then they’ll play or something. I mean, you’re a little more hesitant here to say ‘oh yeah, he’ll be fine’. Or am I reading too much into that?

I don’t want to jinx it. I should knock on wood shouldn’t I? No, we’ll see. He feels good, he’s speaking the right language. Everything is positive, like I said, he’s just got to go through a couple of hurdles.


Brian Costello, The New York Post: Robert, after the Eagles game, in the glow of that win, you mentioned how your defense had embarrassed all the quarterbacks you’ve played.  You are going to see one of those guys on Sunday, I am sure he has been made aware of that comments. You know, would you like to reword that or double down?

Double down? No. Josh (Allen), like I said embarrassing was probably the wrong choice of words in the heat of the battle. Josh is a phenomenal quarterback. He’s one of the top 10 quarterbacks in ball, takes a lot of pride. I mean, he’s a one-man wrecking crew and a damn near superman on the football field. So tons of regard for him, everything we do is about Josh and they’re talented all around them. Tight ends good, obviously (Stefon) Diggs, the backs are good, o line (offensive line) is good. They got a very, very talented football team and Josh has also punched us in the mouth a couple of times too, so he’s well deserving of all the respect he gets.

Connor Hughes, SNY: With them changing their OC (offensive coordinator), how does that make things harder for you?

Not that it’s harder. No, for sure. You go look, obviously it’s a short week. I’m sure he’s going to start sprinkling in his nuance, how much of that and how much of him is going to show up? It’s going to take some time. Will play calling be different? Obviously, of course it will be. Will personnel packages would be different? We are fully anticipating that, so the style of play calling, we have our thoughts on that, but it’ll reveal itself as the game goes, and we just got to continue to just play by our rules and play good ball and play sound, communicate, and play to our standard.

Brian Costello, The New York Post: Is their defense different than recent years? When no more Leslie (Frazier), they also, the two linebackers, (Matt) Milano is hurt and Tremaine Edmunds went into free agency, do they look different? 

No, because at the end of the day, it’s Sean (McDermott) and they do a phenomenal job, so a lot of the principles, everything is still the same. Are the people different because of the injury? For sure. I kind of look at it like in 2020 after the night in San Francisco, we lost a lot of the guys, but it was like year four, so the guy stepping in all knew exactly what to do. They had been there for a long time and it’s the same thing here, all these guys know exactly what to do, and they’re still playing at a very high level, they’re very well coached, they play their tails off, they’re opportunistic, they communicate really well and because of it, they’re still putting together some really good defensive game plans.


Andy Vasquez, NJ Advanced Media: You guys have faced some adversity obviously, the last two weeks, but you look around the standings, everything’s pretty bunched up, it’s all right there in front of you. So overall, what’s the temperature in the locker room right now?

It’s good. I mean, I’d say we’ve been facing adversity all year. But no, it’s awesome the guys are in great spirit. I thought, again, practice doesn’t always transfer, but the juice in yesterday’s practice was phenomenal and there’s a lot of energy, there’s a lot of good, positive talk, meeting rooms are alive where people are communicating, asking questions, and speaking. It’s not just a bunch of zombies walking around, which can happen, but I like where we’re at and the mindset, the juice, the energy, and I don’t think it’s because they see blood in the water, I think it’s because they’re excited to go play football and attack this moment and knowing that if we just take it one day at a time, own our moments and play to that championship mindset we’ll be okay.

Brian Costello, The New York Post: This season hasn’t probably gone the way with (Allen) Lazard had hoped. What are you seeing from him right now?

He’s coming out, he’s still working obviously, he’s putting in work, he’s trying to get himself figured out, not figured out, but he’s trying to get into that groove. He acknowledges it, he knows he can play a lot better. Part of his style is like he’s the goon and when he embraces that role of being the goon, where you’re in there and you’re blocking support, you’re making the big boy catches down the middle and the 50-50 balls in the red zone, and all the different things that that he’s done his entire career. When he plays to that role, he usually elevates and so for him just recapturing that and continuing to work is how he’s going to find that and I think he’s working towards that.


Connor Hughes, SNY: Do you think he has experienced a bit more of a challenge because it’s the first time in his career he is playing with a different quarterback? Like I’m sure he and Aaron (Rodgers) learned nuances, body language, just how to play together and now with Zach obviously is different than Aaron.

Maybe, it’ll probably be more of a question for him. Obviously, change is always going to be different. A lot of his success came from Green Bay and now he’s in the new building, new quarterback, all that, for sure you could say that little bit of change can kind of create some not decisions, but his consistency, if you will, but that probably would be more of a question for him.


Zack Rosenblatt, The Athletic: Seemed like Dalvin Cook started to get into a little bit more of a grove this last week, is that promising for him maybe increasing role with Michael Carter and all that?

100 percent, 100 percent. I had a really good talk with him and you kind of saw it with Josh Jacobs at the Raiders, you missed an entire training camp and Josh kind of started slow when you watched the early part of this tape, but when you watch him now, Josh looks really good, in terms of getting his legs underneath them. When you look at Dalvin, he misses all the training camp, not exactly sure what he did even before OTAs, he just wasn’t in the building and then you get to Week One and it’s just like that juice, that pop, there’s something missing, but you’ve kind of seen it over the last couple weeks. I feel like his legs are alive, he’s starting to see the field the way we know he can see the field, so getting him more of a role is definitely a priority.


Brian Costello, The New York Post: With all the injuries you guys have had in the o-line (offensive line), Laken (Tomlinson) has been the one constant at the same position. What has he kind of meant to that group?

Laken has been great. I feel like he’s been improving every week. I don’t want to do it to him, but he’s kind of been an iron man when you consider the o-line (offensive line) and what’s been happening to it for the last two years and he fights through a lot of pain. He’s always trying to find ways to maximize himself and get better and he takes a lot of it personal, which he should, but he’s been great and kind of a big stabilizing human in there at that left guard spot.

Connor Hughes, SNY: You guys have dealt with some issues with receiver. One of the guys that’s familiar to this area, maybe not necessarily your regime is Robbie Anderson, or Chosen. He’s on the waiver wire release, let go. Is that something you guys might explore?

I know Joe (Douglas) will always turn over every stone. I know he’s he can flat-out roll. Pretty sure he got us for one in Carolina, our first year, was that him? He did, that was him. I remember, I’ll keep it to myself, I remember the exact play, there you go, I see you guys, but no, he can roll, he’s got a speed element, he’s got a fastball and whenever a player has a fastball, he’s always worth talking about.


Jeane Coakley, SNY: Long Island? 

Yeah, we got a Long Island team, Floral Park High School, Long Island. The Knights are on a six-game-winning streak and playing for their first championship since 2005. Last week, they took down the number one ranked team in the state, a team they hadn’t been since 98. Good luck to them in the championship game tonight.