Doug Marrone - Monday, September 3, 2018

(Opening statement) "We start, obviously, today. The good news is I know the injury report will start coming out Wednesday, but we'll have all 53 players practicing, which is always a good start. We have a lot of work ahead of us this week. Like you guys know before, we're just trying to take things one day at a time. So over the weekend we voted for captains and announced it to the team this morning. On defense we have Telvin Smith and Calais Campbell. On special teams we have Lerentee McCray. On offense we have Blake Bortles, Brandon Linder and Leonard Fournette. That's who the team voted for, and those guys will be the captains for this upcoming season, which obviously I try to put a lot of responsibility on them, having a voice for the team. We're getting started today. We've got the roster, we've got the practice squad players back. They cleared waivers, which is always good. No transactions. We're just going to get ourselves ready and do the best job we possibly can."

(On if Brandon Linder will be fully practicing this week) "Yeah."

(On if last week had been a regular season game, would Brandon Linder have participated) "Last week? Yes." 

(On his running back depth and if three is a small number) "It's a normal amount in the league, three and one on the practice squad. It's pretty much standard. You know I don't really worry about the numbers per se as long as we have enough people for what I think you're going to have to play. We're trying to make sure we put the 53 best players on the roster for us, for us to go play."

(On how to prepare for someone like Saquon Barkley when there is very little film to watch) "I think it's like anything else. Anyone that steps on that field is a good player, and whether you go back to see the traits that they had in college, which we do not just for him, but we've done that for a lot of players, like returners and things of that nature that come out. We're more focused on really ourselves and what we have to do, rather than look at the opponent." 

(On if there any characteristics about Saquon Barkley that stood out) "There's a lot of great players. He's one of them. He's a guy that, obviously, has all the qualities to be an outstanding player in this league for a long time, so we'll have a challenge to try to stop him as well as a lot of other players. They have a good football team." 

(On if he leans on Executive Vice President of Football Operations Tom Coughlin to prepare to face Eli Manning based on his previous experience) "It's been normal this week. The same stuff that we did last year against all of our opponents are really the same things that we're doing this year. We don't have any insight." 

(On if the experience of Offensive Line Coach Pat Flaherty and Secondary Coach Perry Fewell help preparation) "No, we're just going by what we're really seeing on the film. I think it's tough. They've been out of there for a while and the schematics have changed and things are different. Like how we pick the team, we just try to see what we have on tape and do the best job we can." 

(On if he feels Offensive Coordinator Nathaniel Hackett will be more conservative early in the season given the young receiving corps) "I like the guys that we have. They're going to have to do that for us to be successful, whether it's down the field, whether it's blocking, whether it's intermediate routes. They are going to have to stay fresh. They're going to have to do a heck of a job. People are going to challenge them, and we're ready for those guys to step up. They've put a lot of work in." 

(On what he wants to see most from Blake Bortles this year) "Zero turnovers. I mean really, and I say that with anyone on our team that touches the football. That's the one thing that is the biggest cause of winning and losing games. I think that we talk about ball security and that's not just for a quarterback, but for our receivers, our tight ends, running backs, all the time. When you turn the ball over, it's hard to win football games." 

(On if he would be OK with 15 more touchdown passes from Blake Bortles, but five more interceptions) "No, because I know the turnovers will lead to wins and losses more than the touchdowns. Now if you said 15 game-winning touchdowns, I'll take that. How's that?" 

(On if the game this week against the Giants will be emotional for Tom Coughlin and other returning coaches) "I don't know. I'm born right across the river, so I mean it's not emotional for me. I really can't answer that question. It's a pain in the ass. Everyone wants tickets and sideline passes. I don't see anyone when I go up there. Most of them are Giants fans."

(On what Tre Herndon did to make the team) "I think he's a great story. For Tre, I really didn't know much about him, honestly, when we first acquired him. I saw a little tape. You bring him on and we had a lot of people that we felt very comfortable with in the back end. It's like everything else. Every time he had an opportunity he showed up. Then all of a sudden he started showing up on special teams. Then we wanted to see him against better competition and we were able to do that when we practiced against Minnesota and playing in games and playing against our own team. He just kept coming out. It's funny; it's like with [Keelan] Cole last year, if you're on the sideline with the players and Tre would make a play or like last year Cole would make a play, you see a lot of the veteran guys say, 'That guy can play. That guy can play.' I have always said it before, I think players know and he has worked extremely hard. He's very humble, he's very bright. A very bright kid. It's one of those stories where, what happened? Why didn't this kid get drafted? Like I say in the beginning of the year, I don't really care how you are in this room, whether you were drafted or a free agent or whatever it is, but at this point on you are going to have earn your way onto this team. He did a hell of a job." 

(On seeing guys like Herndon and Rashad Greene Sr. make the team) "I like to see people who have to go through adversity. I think everyone loves an underdog. I think that's pretty much how people will view those stories. I think that's what makes it so great. Whatever the odds are you overcome them. When they come in they don't have the amount of reps. It's very limited early on. For them, when they have those reps, they really have to show something. When you do that you have stories like this. We showed our team the night before the last preseason game, we had a couple positions stand up and sit down. If you look at it, three of [the] four starting secondary [players] are [undrafted], college free agents. They weren't drafted. If you look at our offensive line we have a lot of players there that have played in this league for a while, starting with the person we acquired in free agency, who was a college free agent, Andrew Norwell. There are a lot of stories like that and I'm sure we're not the only team. I think sometimes when you look around – I remember some of the players like, 'Wow, I never really thought of it like that,' before the last preseason game when you're looking at four starters in the secondary and three of them were college free agents. They have played a long time." 

(On if he would consider Leon Jacobs an underdog) "I don't. Maybe because of the position he plays and the draft. I don't know anything about that, but we liked him coming out. I know when we watched him I know I liked him and I was happy to get him. I thought that you still don't know, and like I said before, when he's on the field he's very bright, smart, strong. When he was out there he looked like an NFL football player. I think he has played well and he has gotten better and he still has a long way to go, but he's working hard at it."

(On expectations for a rookie starter) "It's difficult for me and I think I've said this before – my expectation is I need you to give your best effort, your best foot forward, because those are things that do not take talent. To go out there and work extremely hard and do those things, for me, that's what I look at from everyone. And then it's, can we develop them? Can we coach them? Do they have enough talent, strength and knowledge to go out there and produce and perform? For me, I start with that foundation and I don't like to do that. Personally, I don't like to put expectations before I start seeing the players play and actually watch them play." 

(On the challenges Odell Beckham Jr. presents) "He is obviously a great player and is part of 11 for them. Like I said before, when you go out on the field, you're trying to stop the 11 players on the opposing team. If you focus too much on one then someone else is going to wind up beating you. They have skill players, they have good running backs, good tight ends, good receivers, solid offensive line and obviously they have a two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback who has been in the league a long time and seen a lot of things. He's going to be very well prepared for us. We have to do a good job of our preparation this week." 

(On if he will pay attention to Jalen Ramsey's comments this week) "I don't have to worry about paying attention because usually it will get to me quick. My focus is to get the team prepared to go up to New York and play a challenging game. Opening day games on the road are very difficult. For me, I just focus on that. I don't focus on the other stuff."

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