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TRANSCRIPT: Head Coach Anthony Lynn Day 3 Availability

Opening statement:

"I'm really excited about the players that we acquired. I think it's very seldom that you get guys that you want in your locker room that match the skill set that you're looking for. Our scouts and personnel department did one heck of a job putting that board together because, like I said, this is one of the best drafts that I think we've had since I've been here. It's just a feeling that I have from watching these young men, talking to these young men and getting to know them a little bit. I'm very excited about these players."

On QB Justin Herbert:

"What is there not to like about him? I think he answered every question and passed every test. He's a four-year senior. He goes to the Senior Bowl and is the MVP there. He goes to the combine, competes his tail off at the combine and has his pro day. He did everything that we asked him to do. All he did was lead his team to the Rose Bowl his senior year and he made plays."

On tackle depth:

"I'm comfortable enough with what we have. I never want to go into a draft feeling like I have to take a certain position. It's just a bad feeling because you don't control the draft. We didn't get a tackle, but we got one in free agency. We have some options from last season with some young guys that I feel good about."

On the quarterbacks:

"Let's not leave out [QB] Easton Stick. He's on the roster as well and he's done one heck of a job. Those guys, it's going to be a competitive room. At the same time, those guys are going to learn from each other. I think Justin [Herbert] is walking into a great situation because he couldn't be around two better pros than [QB] Tyrod [Taylor] and Easton. They have different skill sets to what we've had here in the past. All of these guys, they have arms that can make every throw, they're mobile and just allow you to do more things. Guys that throw from the pocket like what we've had in the past -- I mean, [Colts QB Philip] Phil [Rivers] was excellent at getting rid of the ball and letting other people be his legs. These guys, they can run around a little bit. The offense may look a little different, but you still have to be able to play quarterback and play it from the pocket."

On Herbert's attention to detail:

"It's a pattern with him. He's a 4.0 [grade point average] student all through high school, a 4.0-student in college. I think he graded highest on the Wonderlic test. He's a perfectionist. He would remember something like that. Hell, I wouldn't. It doesn't bother me at all. He's human."

On the unique offseason:

"I'll tell you, especially the quarterback position, it can have a huge effect on those guys, not getting those reps. I don't care how smart you are, until you get our there and get those reps — especially with a new offense and maybe doing some things differently than you've done in the past, like playing underneath the center — that's going to be harder if we don't have camps."

On moving up to get LB Kenneth Murray:

"He's a guy that we had our eyes on. We had a plan. [General Manager] Tom Telesco executed that plan to perfection, I thought. It was really cool. At one point, we didn't think we were going to move up. He just kept talking to different people and we had a chance to move up and get him. He's a guy that is a run-hit linebacker. When you watch the tape, he's a very physical football player. He plays this game like old-school linebackers. He's really intense. He has that speed that we haven't had at that position since I've been here. Also, he has that leadership, those intangibles that I really like in a young man. He was a guy that we were really targeting. I was glad that we were able to go back into the first round and get him. That was just a good pickup."

On Murray and LB Nick Vigil adding versatility:

"Yeah, especially with Kenneth being able to go over and play the WILL position. At the WILL position, you may have to run vertical, a little bit more and cover a little bit more. It's really good that he's able to do that. With Vigil, it's the same way. He is going to bring good, quality depth at the position, as well."

On RB Joshua Kelley:

"You know what, I was hoping that he would be there in the fourth round after the first day ended because we didn't have a third-round pick. This is a young man, after losing [Broncos RB] Melvin Gordon [III] — and Melvin Gordon is one heck of a back. Not to say Joshua Kelley can be Melvin Gordon, but his a downhill, physical runner that I liked watching the tape. He was kind of a late bloomer. He started out, I believe, at UC Davis and kind of grew into the body that he has now, transferred over to UCLA. All he has done every single year is get better and better. We're hoping to keep that trend."

"He's battle-tough. He's been through some things in life and come out on the other side. He's another one of those young men that has been through something, is high-character and great intangibles. At the same time, he's a good football player. That's what I was focused on."

On Herbert:

"We drafted him high to one day be our franchise quarterback, for sure, but I don't want to put a timetable on this young man. No different than that I don't put a timetable on injuries because guys develop and get ready at different times. Does he need a couple of years? Does he need one year? Maybe he doesn't need any at all. I don't know. They're going to go in and they're going to compete. The best guy is going to play.

"[Leadership] is not an issue at all, that I saw. I've only met with the young man once in-person, but he's very respectful and polite. He spoke when he was supposed to. He's a hard worker. I don't see how you could have a problem with this young man. I believe leadership comes when you get out there, hang out with your teammates and start winning some football games. As far as how we're going to manage the offseason, right now all we have is virtual meetings. I definitely signed up for the virtual rookie minicamp. That will be his first exposure to our playbook. After that, who knows?"

On WR Joe Reed:

"You said the keyword right there with versatility. He is a multi-purpose threat. This guy plays wide receiver, he plays running back. He's a return guy. He has been highly productive. I've had guys like this in the past like Joshua Cribbs, Brad Smith. to me, he fits that role where you can have a package for this young man each and every week that can extend two or three drives, or put points on the board. Defensive coordinators have to be prepared for stuff like that. We needed a multi-threat like that. I felt like he was the guy."

On S Alohi Gilman:

"I think [the late rounds] are great to start looking to get guys that will help you on special teams. I also believe this young man is going to help us in the secondary, as well. We did lose [Patriots S Adrian] AP [Phillips]. This guy reminds me a lot of AP, just the way he carries himself, the way he goes about playing the football game. With the versatility that he has shown on the field, we believe he can fill that role."

On WR K.J. Hill:

"You never know what people are looking at and their needs. We just had him on our board as a play-maker. This young man, I believe he's the leading reception guy in Ohio State [history]. He's had a lot of production. He didn't run extremely fast, but I like the fact that he plays fast. All he does is make plays when he's on the football field. He's going to have a chance to come in here and compete for that No. 3 spot. On top of that, he has some punt return ability."

On thoughts of trading back into the second or third round:

"We just had conversations. That's all."

On the new draft picks:

"I'm very confident in the young men that we brought on the team. These guys are play-makers and they fit our locker room. Like I said earlier, it's hard to find guys that you feel like are a perfect fit in your locker room. At the same time, you have to win football games. That's how I feel about these young men. They have to get here. They have to go to work. Our coaches have to get their hands on these guys and we'll see what happens."

On having virtual time with the coaches:

"Yeah, anytime that you can have meetings with these guys over Zoom or Microsoft Teams, I don't think a lot of our guys had that. We didn't do this back then. I'm sitting in these meetings where it's almost like we're all together. We're talking back-and-forth, we're communicating. It's becoming really efficient." 

On the virtual draft:

"No one knew what to expect. I thought the way the NFL handled this, the way each team handled this, I thought was very well. We had no breakdowns. It was a pretty efficient process. Hell, I was talking to some of the other NFL coaches and we were thinking maybe we should do this again next year. I'm at home in t-shirt and shorts. No tie, no suit, that's pretty comfortable." 

On drafting leadership:

"It's a priority every year to get guys like that. Sometimes, it's harder. This year it just fell in place. There were a lot of good guys out there that got drafted by other teams that we really liked. I'm really happy with the ones that we got."

On adding to the offensive tackle position:

"Everything is possible. You've seen there are some good players out there from free agency that haven't been picked up. Anything is possible."  

On the offseason program:

"I think everybody is doing virtual meetings. They aren't mandatory. It's just like if the guys were in the building. We can only do meetings. I believe a handful of teams are actually doing virtual workouts. I trust our guys to workout on their own to get the job done. They have always done that in the past, but we do have the meetings and we've had almost 100 percent participation just in the meetings because we have some new things going in."

On the rookie offseason program:

"No different than if we had a rookie minicamp. It'd be virtual meetings just for rookies."

On advantages and disadvantages on the virtual draft:

"I don't know if there were any advantages of doing it this way. We're creatures of habit. We're used to being a room looking at this huge draft board and you can visualize things a little better but doing it here with the draft board in front of me and being on Zoom and FaceTiming the coaches I thought the process went really smooth. There were some things that could've happened. My WiFi could've gone out and then, hell, I miss half the draft. That wouldn't be good. This year, I just thought it was a pretty smooth process."

On the 2020 NFL Draft as a sign of hope during the COVID-19 pandemic:

"I can see that because so much has changed. Our values have changed in this pandemic. We had the draft on schedule, on time. It was probably the only thing normal in the last couple of months that we've had."

On if the team will be a run-heavy offense:

"No, I wouldn't say that. There's going to be some games you might have to run a lot. There's going to be some games you have to throw a lot. Whatever the defense is giving us. I just want to be able to run when we have to. That's all."

On getting faster on defense:

"I sure hope so. Getting a guy like LB Kenneth Murray — we were fortunate enough to go back up and get him. At the linebacker spot, he can cover a lot of space. Kansas City has a lot of speed and I think that every pick we take, every move we make, we have to have them in mind. We'll see."

On Herbert's pre-draft meeting:

"We send him things that we feel like can challenge him and some of them were under center. There were some run-actions, a lot of things that he hadn't done yet. Yeah, I guess you could say we want to challenge him that way a little bit. I thought he passed the test."

On if Herbert can excel in the NFL:

"Yeah, I don't think there is anything that this young man can't do. He's 6-6. He's mobile. He's fast. He has a strong arm. As soon as he can get in here and learn our system and our offense, he's going to be just fine. I think he can do whatever he sets his mind to do."

On when the virtual rookie minicamp will take place:

"We're looking at May 8. A lot of people do it the following weekend, but we might still be signing guys because of the circumstances."

On a quarterback working on his eyes:

"When you're taking a snap and you're dropping, yeah, we want your eyes downfield. Guys sometimes aren't used to that if they're out of shotgun all the time. Especially turning your back on the secondary with the hard run-action fakes. You have to make those reads very simple. We would be maybe not in shotgun, but pistol probably more than we have been in a while. I don't want that to be completely foreign to a quarterback. This young man has been in the shotgun his whole life, so I don't want to get him and put him under center right away every snap. So if we put him in pistol, we would get the same things done and, at the same time, we could run read-schemes."

On what's next in the at-home process:

"We're moving along just like we're all together. Like we're in camps. We'll start getting ready for these rookie virtual meetings and right now we're doing the installs with our players on the roster right now four times a week. It's just work as usual for us."

On how the virtual install went with the players this week:

"It was great seeing all the guys. I got as many guys as I could on one screen. It was great just catching up and then watching the guys talk with one another. We had a little fun with that. I thought it was very productive."

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