Head Coach Robert Saleh, 8.23
Antwan Staley, New York Daily News: Duane Brown, has he been cleared? If so, what will he do today?
Yeah, he is cleared. As far as involving himself in practice, he is going to go through an acclimation period. Hopefully, we will get him going tomorrow, but he should be out there, he has been cleared.
Al Iannazzone, Newsday: Are you expecting him Week One?
Antwan Staley, New York Daily News: So, I guess you will just gradually ramp up stuff?
Yeah, for sure. No different than anybody else.
Steve Serby, New York Post: So, who would start at left tackle for Saturday night?
It is going to be between Billy (Turner) and Max (Mitchell).
Steve Serby, New York Post: Do you feel more optimistic about the way your offensive line seems to come together?
Yeah, I have always said if big ‘Bec’ (Mekhi Becton) can get the ball rolling, and we started that snowball down the hill a long time ago with him integrating back into practice and all of that. That snowball keeps rolling and we feel really good about our o-line (offensive line).
Antwan Staley, New York Daily News: Everybody talks about the chemistry between a quarterback and wide receiver. The offensive line is obviously different, how do you gain that chemistry with each other?
Well hopefully, with the way we are set, left tackle, there is still that competition at left tackle, get Duane in there, but with the other four, hopefully that can stay the same for a while. Hopefully, we can avoid the injury bug and those guys can continue to work together and communicate with one another and get going.
Bruce Beck, WNBC: What are your goals, Robert, for this game in terms of what you would like to accomplish, what are you really looking for?
Come out healthy, that’s it. Win, lose, it doesn’t matter. Just go out there and let everybody feel what this offense is going to feel like, the defense what it is going to feel like again. Get out there and just get through some reps and then get off the field and get ready for Buffalo.
Rich Cimini, ESPN.com: Robert, with Corey Davis, is he back today?
No, he is not. He is still dealing with his personal matter.
Rich Cimini, ESPN.com: Obviously, it is personal, but is it something you foresee being, how long do you think he will be gone, and will it affect his status for Week One?
However long he needs. I don’t (know).
Al Iannazzone, Newsday: What does it mean to have somebody like Duane, I know how important he was last year though everything, but what does it mean for this offense, for Aaron (Rodgers) to have someone like him come back?
Just another guy that brings stability, wealth of knowledge, wealth of experience, knows how to play the game of football, knows how to prepare week in and week out. So, there is always a benefit to guys like him.
Antwan Staley, New York Daily News: It seems like you had a great deal of admiration for what he did last year playing through everything he went through, just talk about that a little bit.
Shoot, people wouldn’t even get out of bed for the stuff he went through, and he was out playing NFL football games, and he didn’t have to because his money was already guaranteed. So, when you have guys who just love the game so much that they are willing to just, and the guy had torn rotator cuffs, and he still went out there and didn’t have to and played damn near the whole season, basically with one arm and played pretty darn well. So, he has been in this League forever, you know why? People got to see why, because of the way he prepares, the way he loves the game, the way he fights through pain and injuries, he is not affected by an injury because he is going to continue to find a way to get on the field. He is an absolute pleasure. He is a stud.
Antwan Staley, New York Daily News: How can a player like that really set the tone for everybody else on the team?
Well, it is an example. A lot of the times we look at the glamor of being All-Pro and the glamor of being Pro Bowl, but sometimes we forget to acknowledge what it took to get to that point. We celebrate the reward and the accomplishment, but we forgot about the mountain that was climbed was significant, but to be able to see it with your own two eyes, I think is valuable to any young kid, any young man coming into the League.
Al Iannazzone, Newsday: I’m sure you talked with him, but if Aaron wasn’t here, do you think he would be here? Because obviously what else is he playing for at this point but to win?
That would probably be a question for him. I’d like to think he would be. He was ready to come back before we had a quarterback signed. He was here working and wanting to play and expressing desire to play, so before we even talked about quarterback, I felt like he was in the boat.
Brian Costello, New York Post: He turns 38 next week, do you think it’s risky at all banking on a guy who’s 38 and coming off of shoulder surgery?
No, not him. Seems like whatever they’re putting in water these days, football players are able to last a little longer somehow. I needed that water when I was younger, but no, the way he prepares, I mean you guys see him every day. The guy is just so cognizant and so intentional with how he works day in and day out on his body, so I’m not anticipating any holdbacks because of his age.
Connor Hughes, SNY: Are you guys pleased with where you guys are right now in terms of offense, defense, and special teams at this point in training camp? Sometimes a coach will say “we’re a little further behind and have to ramp it up”. Are you content with where you are right now?
We’re never going to be satisfied, we’re always going to want more, always going to be nervous about something. Whether we got enough reps, whether we’re prepared, whether we’re running efficiently. You see a guy bust in practice and you’re like “Oh my god, he’s not ready to play,” so it’s a nervous tick in coaches. I think we’ve had a really good training camp. For me, just want to make sure we continue to stay healthy as we go into the regular season. It’s just a matter of building reps, continuing to build reps, whether it’s walkthrough, live, individual, group install, just making sure that we’re stacking up reps, purposeful reps, and just getting ourselves ready to play a football game.
Steve Serby, New York Post: Can you explain how this training camp has been different for you with Aaron here?
I don’t know if it’s been different. Obviously having another veteran to lean on and talk to and have great conversations with, that’s always great. Like I’ve said, I’ve been blessed. I’ve had Richard Sherman, who I was able to lean on and ask questions when I was a defensive coordinator. Never shy to go to a veteran player and ask for some thought and some advice at times, so having him here hasn’t changed much, obviously, the attention’s been great, but as you guys know, September 11th, once that rolls around, we’re on our own.
Steve Serby, New York Post: Is it more of a comfort for a head coach to have a guy like that?
It depends. I feel like I don’t have an ego, and I learned this way back in Seattle, when I was a QC (quality control coach) and Pete Carroll was the first person who asked me to draw something on the board and give my thoughts and I was like “Me? My opinion?”. And I learned that he would ask anybody in the building, because you never know where a good idea would come from. Not to minimize the value of Aaron and all the veterans who are on this football team, but you never have the answers as a person in charge, if you will, you look at it as a team, and it’s the team of people that if you allow a voice, and you allow a conversation, again this is my philosophy, you never know where a great idea may come from and you never know how it might help your football team.
Bruce Beck, WNBC: How excited are you to see this thing come to fruition in this game this week to see Rodgers and that unit out there?
It’ll be fun. I’m not holding onto any result. It could be a couple of three and outs for all I know, it doesn’t matter. I just want them to go out, get their feet wet. A lot of anticipation, obviously, but at the end of the day, it’s just go out there. It’s like an MMA (mixed martial art) fighter, you step in the cage for the first time, you just want to use it to your advantage and give those guys a chance to step into the cage together one time before the season starts, so it’s just go out there, have fun with it, execute, and we’ll see what happens.
Connor Hughes, SNY: You mentioned when Pete (Carroll) called you up, do you remember what you put on the board and was it well received?
It was a run play in a fit. I think it was fit and power if I remember right.
Connor Hughes, SNY: Did they use it?
No, no, no, I was defensively just explaining my thoughts on the fit as I remember it and then there was a route concept and how we would fit that to the pass. It was just all within the coverage and just getting a view.
Joe Mauceri, WPIX: I know you’re playing them during the regular season, but does a preseason game against the Giants take your team with a little bit of a rivalry feeling to another level that prepares you for the regular season?
I think, and I might be mistaken, what I think they’ll feel is the fans really love this game too. The Snoopy Bowl, I don’t know if it’s still called the Snoopy Bowl, but I do know that the stadium will be more- not regular season live, but there will be more people in the stadium for Jets-Giants, so at least they’ll get a small taste, different than last week against Tampa, it was half full. Not a quiet crowd, but just a regular old preseason crowd. I think there will be a little more electricity, but for the players, it’s just about going out there, focusing, doing their job and whatever they feel emotionally from the fans, I think they’ll feel and then we’ll move on.