Head Coach Robert Saleh, 6.6
Connor Hughes, SNY: How much will Aaron (Rodgers) do today?
He’s for sure, I don’t want to jinx anything, but he’s been doing 7-on-7, two-minute, anything team where people can be around his legs, we’ve been holding him out on that stuff.
Brian Costello, New York Post: Was yesterday his first day back to it?
He did Friday. He did some two-minute work and then got in yesterday. Like I talked about last time, it’s been going according to plan.
Brian Costello, New York Post: You guys have talked about his effect on the building and to this team. They put out a video yesterday of him throwing a deep ball. Are there moments when you just kind of see him actually on the field throwing that it’s like, ‘Woah?’
I think there was another one that they threw out there where he threw it to CJ Uzomah. It was a dirty throw. He’s just got tremendous vision, he can see it all and he’s got so much experience that you give him that much, you’re wide open. There’s been some wild moments, I’m sure there’s going to be a heck of a lot more.
Bruce Beck, WNBC: He doesn’t shy away from talking about Super Bowls, whether he’s at a concert or here, I think he calls it ‘manifesting it.’ Does that take some getting used to for you?
No, everyone talks about it. You have long term goals. I think he’s the type that has the discipline to bring it back to the moment, though. The reality is, yeah, we all want to win a world championship. You guys all want to be the best in your craft. So, we have long term goals, but what are you doing in the interim? What are you doing today to prepare you or to get you moving towards your long-term goals? He’s one of those guys that has that discipline, he understands that ‘Yes, this is what I want, but this is what I need to do today.’ If you have that and you can keep that in perspective, I think you’re fine being able to drift off every once in a while.
Connor Hughes, The Athletic: You said that, I remember we talked about Tom Brady, and you were saying that his arm just never fell off from a talent perspective. It seems like you’re talking about Rodgers in the same way. How has he been able to do it and just what about today’s game, can you illustrate that these guys are playing at 39 as if they were 29?
As far as a physical standpoint on what he does day-to-day, that would probably be more of a question for him. I know he is pretty disciplined with regards to eating and all that stuff. He has a way about him. It’s funny talking to (Mike) Nicolini in the strength room, our strength and conditioning coach, he was talking about how strong he is, like Duane Brown strong, I’m convinced it’s probably old man strength, who knows. He’s got tremendous strength, he’s still very youthful. I know his age is just a number for him, but everything looks good. He’s got tremendous zip on the ball, a lot of accuracy, a lot of accuracy. He’s special.
Coach, you said that Aaron has an ability to state that goal, which everybody has and also work on the game, but I feel like every team has that same goal, but they don’t always acknowledge it. There’s that fear of putting those expectations. How does it change things when he walks into the room and says, ‘No, I’m here to win a championship’?
I think, call me different or whatever, it’s not arrogance. Every team wants to win a championship. Every team is expecting to win a championship. That is in the walls and you talk about that, you acknowledge that. Yeah, of course every team wants to win a championship, but you have to have the discipline to bring it back. That’s where messaging comes in and all that. Yeah, that’s what you want, but what are you doing today? You just got to remind everyone what are we doing at this moment because if we’re not doing what we need to do today, then none of it matters any way. Because teams don’t talk about it, doesn’t mean that they’re not really thinking about it. Everybody wants to win a championship. Everybody goes into camp believing that they’re one of those teams that can win a championship. That is a true inner belief no matter what’s said, no matter what the power rankings say, one to 32, all of them think that they’re capable of winning a championship, but what are you doing today? That’s all that really matters.
Have you seen a different type of moxy in the locker room and guys detailing their work to a championship caliber because of what Aaron brings?
I feel like we had that last year. Obviously, the offense and defense coming up but these guys, we got a really, really cool locker room. These guys take everything deliberately, they treat every rep like a championship rep, from walkthrough to group install to team reps, everything is so deliberate in how they go about their business. Now is there a confidence and a belief that they can do more? Absolutely, any time you have that, but again, I don’t think it’s really changed how we practice because I feel like we’ve got a really good group of guys who take everything to heart.
Brian Costello, New York Post: With (Carl) Lawson, do you expect another level from him this year? Further removed from the Achilles injury?
I am excited for him. My personal experience would be Richard Sherman who had the Achilles injury. We signed him that first year, he had a decent year, but was nowhere near where I remembered and then the second year removed, it was like he was back. That was the 2019 year and just learning about Achilles injuries and it’s a two-year injury. The first year you’re not quiet where you want to be and then that second year everything comes back. Yesterday was the first day we’ve seen him, he looks freaking awesome. I’m really excited for him and what he can do having two years removed from that injury.
Dan Leberfeld, Jets Confidential: Robert, with Duane Brown, I know you said you’re going to play the best five players on the offensive line. Duane hasn’t played right tackle ever in the NFL, he said the last time he played it was at Virginia Tech, either his sophomore or junior year. Could he possibly play there? Is that a scenario or after all of these years of left tackle, that’s what he is?
That’s something that we’ll look at. He obviously is very comfortable at that left tackle spot. There’s guys who can play right and left and just trying to sort it out. We’ll get to all of that as we go, but I have a feeling Duane will be a hard out anyway. He looks good, he’s doing a real nice job, but everything will be taken into consideration once we start to settle in on which five are going to be the five that we roll into the season with.
Dan Leberfeld, Jets Confidential: (Follow-Up) What do you mean by hard out?
As in he’s going to be hard to push out the door.
Rich Cimini, ESPN.com: How’s Will McDonald IV fitting in and how could he impact the way you rotate all those defensive ends?
Will looks the part. I love his personality. He is a dude, man. He’s got tremendous length, his bend, just going through drills. I know there hasn’t been much o-line, d-line, but it’s freakish, just his bendability and burst off the ball and all that stuff and his length. Obviously, there’s things from a developmental standpoint, all rookies go through it with regards to a little bit more size, a little bit more power, developing the ability to run through tackles is always going to be the biggest thing for a defensive lineman, but I love where he’s at right now, he’s got a long way to go, but you guys know as we rotate, if they dress on gameday, they’re going to play at least 20. He’ll be part of the rotation.
Zack Rosenblatt, The Athletic: Jeremy Ruckert is a guy that didn’t really play much last year but you’ve seen a lot of him out at practice so far. What has he showed you between last year and now?
He looks awesome. He’s hungry. Last year he had plantar fasciitis, as he was dealing with the foot injury all season, but he looks like a guy on a mission. We’re not in pads yet, but I’m not worried about him in pads. He’s got a nasty streak to him. Excited about him and the direction he’s going in for sure.
Antwan Stanley, New York Daily News: There’s a report saying that you don’t plan on holding mandatory minicamp next week and if that’s true, what went into that thinking?
With the Hall of Fame game, we’re reporting a week earlier than everybody else and guys need to get away. We’ve been here, they’ve put in a really good off-season, all the guys have since April, so April, May, June. Just to give the guys an extra week to go take their break because you need a week off and then you got to rev back up to get ready for the season. Having this extra week, taking the week off, then the Fourth of July, there’s just a lot of things that can mess up the flow, but we’ll pick it up and we’ll regain it once we get back for the Hall of Fame Game.
Rich Cimini, ESPN.com: So, the players aren’t required to be here at all?
Jori Epstein, Yahoo Sports: Robert, the Bills extended defensive tackle, Ed Oliver, this week. Giants and Titans already got Dexter Lawrence and Jeffrey Simmons done. How eager are you to get Quinnen (Williams) done and do you expect that to come before you break?
I speak for everyone, I probably speak for Quinnen in that we all want it to get done sooner rather than later. Again, I’ll let the business guys handle all that stuff, but it’s going to get done. He’ll be here for camp, he’ll be ready to roll and once he is, I’m sure he’ll be the same guy he was a year ago.
Al Iannazzone, Newsday: Is he missing anything by not being here right now?
You’re asking a coach, of course he is, but I think he’ll be fine.
Brian Costello, New York Post: How has (Jamien) Sherwood looked? Is he kind of grabbing that third linebacker job right now?
Yeah, (Sherwood) Wood’s doing a really nice job. He’s got it hard. He’s got to work between SAM and MIKE, so he’s got to do two positions at once and it’s year three for him. He looks really good though. He’s very smart, he’s very comfortable in the system and he’s executing at a high level. Again, excited for him to get pads on, not that I’m even worried about his physicality and all that stuff. Just excited for real football, defending the run and doing all the things that we think, just to see the steps that he’s taken.
Bruce Beck, WNBC: Just to clarify, Robert, you’re going to have a mini camp next week, it’s just not going to be mandatory?
No, we’re not doing it. Everyone’s dismissed.