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Del Rio on Drew


The following is a transcript of Jack Del Rio's press conference following the second round selection of Maurice Drew.

"We added Maurice Drew, a second Bruin. This guy has some real explosive qualities about him. Just a couple numbers for you. 28.5 average on punt returns with a long of 81. He led the nation in punt return average with a 29-yard average. He had scoring touchdowns of 72, 66 and 81. He's averaged 23.65 yards per touchdown and scores every 11-1/2 times he touches the ball, or did last year. He's been very explosive. 23 plays of 20-plus yards. In his 35-game career he had 39 touchdowns. So this is an explosive weapon that we've added. Again, another pick that we think can help our offense be more explosive, be more dynamic and we're very happy to have him. He's a former linebacker. He was a AA player at De La Salle (High School) and conquered that story, the high school program. He was a middle linebacker and a halfback. He's tough. He's very strong. He's short but he's not small. This guy is very thick. He's a real A-plus worker, a top quality character. We're very excited about adding this player."

(did you draft him primarily as a punter returner or running back?) "We drafted him as both. I think bottom of the second round would be a little high if he was just a punt returner. We think he can be a positional player. We think he adds real difference making, explosive speed to the offense and to the special teams. We like our running backs. We're not asking him to come in and become a number one guy, but we're going to find ways to get him the ball and create some room for him, some space and let him do his thing."

(does his height prohibit him from being a feature back?) "People have said that at every level and he's been able to disprove that at every level thus far. He'll get an opportunity to prove whether or not he can be that here in Jacksonville. He certainly won't be restricted due to his effort and determination. This is a very strong-willed competitive guy. This is a top competitor. One of the top competitors we had rated on our board."

(who does he remind you of when you played?) "No one really. I don't have a name for you right now. I think he is a unique person. He is very fast, very powerful. He's stronger than most guys his size, so he's rare."

(could you compare him to Joe Morris, who you played against?) "That would be a fair comparison. I don't remember what Joe's speed was. I don't remember his strength. This guy might be a little faster and a little more powerful. But I think he can be a factor for the Jaguars."

(what does the competition at the running back position look like now?) "It was ultra-competitive before we added this guy. I think it just continues. We have good players. This does not mean we don't like anybody in the group. It just means we've made it a little more competitive. We also still remain very high on Chad Owens and he's going to get a chance to compete for a roster spot. So, this does not in any way close the door on anybody. It merely increases the level of talent that we have in our locker room and offensively the level of talent we'll be able to put on the football field."

(were there any talks about LB Abdul Hodge with this pick?) "Not about that particular spot, no. There are a lot of players that we like and we value them and rank them, and we do all that discussion about who we'd like to pick prior to the draft beginning, in particular in the first couple rounds. We highlight some guys, 'boy it'd sure be great if we get to these guys or they get to us,' but in terms of having those conversations on how we're going to take…Now, more in the second day we'll have those kind of conversations when there are a lot of guys grouped and we'll go side to side and look across the board and they're all in the third round or they're all in the fifth round or the sixth round, or whatever it is, and we'll say 'ok , now we like this guy better for need' and what not."

(did you have any trade talks?) "We've had trade talks all day. It just hasn't worked out where we felt like it would work for the Jaguars. You're kind of in a spot where we are where people don't want to go very far back, they don't want to come up. It's just been a day where we've really looked to be active and have looked at a lot of different opportunities and deals but just have not felt it was a fit."

(your satisfaction level of the first two picks) "I'm very pleased with the first two picks. I think everybody this time of year across the league is saying the same thing. We spent a lot of time looking at these guys. When you make a selection, you better feel good about it. You usually feel good about it. We've worked hard at the process. We've been able to acquire a couple guys. There are a bunch of talented players left. We like the way we've been able to acquire two very talented people thus far and obviously we have a lot of work to do."

(how does Alvin Pearman get on the field more now with this pick?) "Very similarly to how he got on the field last year. One thing about Alvin, he's very dependable, very solid. Alvin was good at blitz pick-up and having a role within the offense and special teams. I think the one thing that is not really appreciated with Alvin is that he plays on all the units. He's not just a return guy. He's a guy who can cover kicks and do things, so he remains a guy that we're very high on."

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