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Transcript - Training Camp Day 10 (Aug. 6, 2019)


Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2019 | Jack Hammett Sports Complex | Costa Mesa, Calif.


On who will play Thursday:

"There are some guys that probably won't play as much. We are going to get a really good look at our reserves. I hate to say that a guy's not going to play this early and then if that guy has to play, then his mind's not right. I'd rather him think that he is going to play and then I tell him before the game that he is not going to play."

On if QB Philip Rivers will play:

"He will be a guy that might be wearing a ball cap. I think we have four quarterbacks in camp. We have three good guys that are competing hard and I want to see all three of those guys play."

On Rivers' reps during joint practices:

"I had him close to 95-100 reps and those are as live as can be, but protecting the quarterback so those are valuable reps."

On the linebackers:

"Linebackers have had a good camp so far, but we've got to go and play an opponent. We will get a chance to watch the film and evaluate and see how they are learning the system because we have a lot of new guys. Right now, they are playing fast, they are playing physical. I like what I see."

On T Trent Scott:

"Every player's different. Not every starter is going to sit in preseason because I have to get the guys what they need to get ready for Week 1 — every player's different. Trent's a young tackle, he needs reps. [G] Forrest Lamp has basically been out for a couple of years, he needs reps. Those guys are going to get plenty of playing time."

On preseason coaching:

"You just want guys executing and doing what they're told to do. You can evaluate that. If there's scheme, that falls back on coaches. We don't have time to scheme preseason and most people don't, to be honest with you. We want guys going out, executing, playing fast, physical, where we can evaluate that."

On the difference in preseason and regular-season games:

"You have 90 players and any time you have that many guys on the roster, you have more chances for distractions. That's why injured guys stay behind, they don't travel with us. It's not that much different once the game starts because it's a real football game. Any time we strap it up and we get on the football field, we are trying to win. That's what we are going to do — try to win."

On the players' mindset:

"You're going to learn a lot on Thursday night about some of these guys because you see them all at OTAs, minicamps, two weeks of training camp and now you get to see them in a live game. This is the real evaluation right here. We've had a lot of exposures, but this is the big one right here. So, we are going to learn a lot about the depth that we have, and we expect that depth to continue to get better and continue to develop. [There are] a lot of young guys right now and they're going to play, so I don't want to put too much into Thursday, but it'll be the first time that we get a chance to see these guys in a live game."

On the importance of reps for the offensive linemen:

"It's very important just to get those reps for experience and just the games upfront and the communication with one another. That's the most important thing with those reps. We get a lot of the quality reps in practice. These guys go up against two pretty good pass-rushers every single day, so I'm not worried about the competition, but they need to work together in that game environment when it's loud and you have to communicate, pass off games and things like that. That's what we are lacking a little bit. As far as physical talent, those guys are pretty talented, but they just need more experience."

On LB Jatavis Brown:

"It's good to see him out there. He's picked up pretty much where he left off. He's had a good offseason, he's had a good camp so far. Now, we will see if he can take it into the games."

On the running backs:

"That group has had a fine camp as a group. You have some young guys in there that you probably haven't heard of, but I think they're going to catch your eye in the preseason. There's [RB] Jeremy Cox, he's pretty steady and we will get a chance to see him run a little bit. He's playing two positions. He's playing fullback and running back so that slowed him down a little bit, but I like what he has done so far."

On Cardinals QB Kyler Murray:

"I'm not sure how much he's playing. We really don't care. We just know what guys we're going to play. It will be exciting to watch him play. I think he is a heck of a football player, that's why he was the first pick in the draft. He grew up 15 minutes from where I grew up, so I've known about him all his life. I knew his father, so I know he is raised right. He's a solid young man, but he's been a winner on every level — high school, college and I don't see him stopping that in the pros. He's just a winner."

On the status of DT Jerry Tillery:

"No, Jerry will not play."

On the status of S Nasir Adderley:

"Yes, he's out."

On the status of WRs Andre Patton and Travis Benjamin:

"Andre Patton and Travis Benjamin, we will see at game time."


On Cardinals QB Kyler Murray:

"Yeah, I watched a little bit of him. Not a lot, but what I do know about him is that he's a very versatile quarterback. Great speed, great arm, a guy that's really smart with the ball. [I'm] definitely looking forward to, if I do get the opportunity, to play against him."

On playing against mobile quarterbacks:

"We have Tennessee on our schedule this year again, so definitely going to have to see another dual-threat quarterback. That just gives us a taste of it early in the preseason and just get ready for the rest of the season, for sure."

On the importance of the preseason:

"You know, just to get your feet wet. It's definitely just to get you warmed up, get you out there. Like I said, it's just to get you ready for the season. It's just a little taste. Just to go out there, apply your techniques and everything you've been learning over training camp. It's definitely going to get you ready."

On improving skills in training camp:

"Like I said, just going out there, applying your techniques and taking what you learned in practice and training camp out on the field. That's what [Head] Coach [Anthony Lynn] always tells us about. You've got to pack your techniques, pack what you've learned through practice and training camp."

On the excitement of football season:

"I mean, once it hit yesterday, I was like — it's game week. I was very excited. Football is back finally. We just get to go out there and have fun."

On having a healthy linebacker corps:

"It's very encouraging. I'd say only because of how we ended last year with no linebackers available. Having everybody back, getting healthy, I think is a very good asset to our team. Just so that we can have extra people out there on the field. Having our linebackers will definitely help us in the run game, for sure."

On the defense:

"We're playing together. That's what it's about. It's a team-effort sport. I feel like we've been doing what we can to get better each and every day, helping each other get better. I've been seeing in practice that we've been making plays. [LB] Kyzir [White] had a nice one-handed interception earlier. That's the thing about having everybody back and everybody healthy — when we have everybody, there's really nothing that we can't do. I feel like we have a great team as a defense having everybody back healthy."

On the team's defensive versatility:

"We have a lot of guys that can play multiple positions. You've got [S] Adrian Phillips, you've got me, you've got [S] Derwin [James Jr.] — like you said, we've got Kyzir — we have [S] Rayshawn Jenkins, who goes to dime and then goes back to free safety. We've got a lot of people that you can move in different places and just to move around the defense. I think that's really good for us."


On his performance in camp:

"I feel like there's always room to get better, but it's definitely good to be back out here. Definitely excited about this upcoming game, getting back out there, just getting the rhythm, and just enjoying the playing time."

On his focus during camp so far:

"I would say just getting my mind wrapped around everything. Just getting back into the groove, getting my rhythm down from last year, picking it back up where I left off. Just getting my confidence back with my ankle. Every day just getting motivated to come out here."

On if he feels overlooked despite being Clemson's all-time receiving leader:

"I mean it is what it is. I don't really care too much about it. I got to where I wanted to be in life. I just make every day count and enjoy this moment where I am now."

On his strengths:

"I feel like I can do whatever I'm asked. I just come out here, have to learn the concept of our offense and just enjoy the moment. Like I said, I can do whatever I'm asked to do. I feel like I don't stereotype myself [and say], 'I'm this, or that.' I just go out there, play and just do what I have to do."

On the offense

"I just feel like everything we can do with our offense. We got a lot of different things going on. [Offensive Coordinator] Coach [Ken] Whiz [Whisenhunt], he knows how to mix it up. We have [QB Philip] Phil [Rivers] back there — very smart quarterback. He's been in this league a long time. He knows how to get us in the right situations and to make plays."

On QB Phillip Rivers:

"He's just different. I always hear him talk about what happened years ago and bringing it to now. How he attacks the game and how he dissects a lot of things and defenses. He's just very smart. It's humbling just to see a guy like that always learning something new and always bettering himself."

On the team's energy going into the first game of preseason:

"Oh yeah, it's a lot of energy, we don't have to practice against ourselves anymore. We can go out here, have fun, and just enjoy the moment. Just getting ready for this game. Most of us haven't played since they left college, they haven't played since they got hurt. There's definitely a lot of energy going. I know a lot of us are excited to go out there, play and show what we've got."

On a particular focus for Thursday:

"I don't feel like we think too much about what we have to do. I think you just have to go out there and be free — just play the game. I mean, I don't think you have to make this game bigger than what it is. You've been playing since you were seven, six, five — whatever it is. I think you just go out there, have fun and just make the play when it comes."

On his confidence compared to past seasons:

"I wouldn't say comfortable, I would say more confident than I was my rookie year. Rookie year, I'm just going out there and playing. Now, I know exactly what I'm doing, what I have to do and how to execute it. I'm just learning a lot more with the defenses, learning from [WR] Keenan [Allen] how to get in and out of different routes. I feel like I am more confident now."

On not wanting to feel too comfortable:

"You have to be uncomfortable. You get comfortable, you have to go. I am never comfortable. I feel like it's confidence."

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