Doug Marrone - Sunday, August 25, 2019

(Opening statement) "I appreciate everyone being here. Obviously, you guys that have been with me understand how difficult of a week this is for me personally coming out. There's a lot of things; it's the challenge of how much you want to get ahead, you can get ready for your opening game. It's a challenge of making sure you do the right thing for the people that are still trying to make the team, there are obviously still a couple of spots left. But then it's tough because I probably can, you guys know, relate to the anxiety a lot for the players that have been giving us everything they had and trying to make it into the NFL and in a couple days, everybody's life changes. So, those are the things that are tough about this week. Obviously the one thing [that] hits me a little bit harder probably than most, because I've been through it, but it is what it is. It's the profession we've chosen and the profession that we've tried to make a living in, or go after, or create the opportunities. So, we'll be doing that this week, probably getting a little bit of everything going on. A little bit of the opening day, a little bit of the fourth preseason game, a little bit of spending some time with the players, making sure that we're doing a good job and then just getting ourselves ready. I think when you look at the preseason and what's gone on for us, I think probably the best way to talk about it is, hey, both offensively, defensively, special teams, I think it's a work in progress. I was asked a question after the game, where would you rate them, and I don't know where you rate anyone until you start playing. It's a good question, but you really don't know until it gets real. We'll be out there, and I just want to make sure that the team's ready, coaches are ready, and we're healthy, and [we'll] give our best effort and let's go. And we get better each day."

(On his reaction to Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck retiring from football) "I know his dad, and I know how difficult it is. I know how difficult this game is and I know how great of a competitor he is. I felt [that] it was unfortunate that injuries take a part of it and I'm sure it must have been very, very difficult for him. Just a loss for the game."

(On how he thought Leonard Fournette performed in the preseason Week 3 game at Miami after getting 'banged up' throughout the game) "I don't know [if] I would use the term 'banged up'. Banged up is a term that people use—I just wanted to make sure I clarify that. Next thing you know, it'll be on SportsCenter that he's injured. But no, he's great. I'm really happy. He's in a great place and [I'm] happy with his performance and I'm happy about what he's doing, so I have no issues. I'm excited to see him when the regular season starts."

(On his evaluation of Will Richardson Jr. in the preseason Week 3 game at Miami aside from his two false start penalties) "It's hard to take those out though, when you say that. I think that Will's really worked hard and it's going to be a tough decision and he's done a good job. And make no mistake about it, Will's increase in play and competitiveness has increased A.J. [Cann]. A.J.'s gotten better, too, at the same time. It's so true, I think a lot of times people sit here and think that we say that just as a cliché, but when you have guys, and they're competing, and then all of a sudden you feel someone breathing down your neck you just step it up. And it's not that you don't want to, or you didn't want to before, or you've become complacent, it's just human nature. So I think that's a good decision for us. I think both players can play. I think we'll look at what gives us the best chance and I think it might go now to practice with the games being even."

(On if he will consider playing Richardson Jr. or Cann in the preseason Week 4 game vs. Atlanta or if he thinks watching them in practice will be a good enough evaluator) "I think practice, but I'm not there yet. I'll be able to tell you later in the week, I just don't know. I just can't tell you that right now."

(On what went into the decision to work out free agent safety T.J. Ward) "I don't know the decision, but I can tell you that normally we bring guys in, work them out, just to create a list for us in case we have any problems. That's personnel."

(On how T.J. Ward looked during his workout) "I didn't see him."

(On if there's an acceptable level of pre-snap penalties in the preseason) "I've kind of changed some of the things I've done. You see what we're trying to do. I went over it with the players and went into meetings and talked about it in meetings and I'm just trying to make sure that those things don't occur. I think that obviously it's a reflection on me, so I have to do everything I can, and I try to educate everyone during the week, and then when we have the penalties I try to show them all to the team. Not to try to embarrass anyone, but just, 'Hey, this is what it is. This is how we're hurting ourselves.' I think it's false—you hear a lot analytically that penalties aren't a good indicator of wins and losses, you'll hear that quite a bit. I don't necessarily agree with it, even though the numbers don't show that, but I think they do. I think we have to dig down deeper and that's the one thing I've been trying to talk to the players about and affect then. But again, when players aren't focused, and that's obviously a lack of focus, it all comes on me. That's my fault. I have to do a better job and find different ways to get the focus there or else we're not going to win games."

(On if he lets himself get excited about Josh Allen after watching him play) "You know me, I'm really the exciting type. I get all fired up and I'm an extremist. I go real high and real low. (laughter) Of course not. I don't. I'm happy though. It's a whole lot better than the other way when people are like, 'Where is this guy? He hasn't shown up, he hasn't been productive.' But I go back to the same thing. I try not to get too high, I try not to get too low. I try to see what happens during the year and the consistency. I think it's like every game – whether you win, lose or someone plays extremely well or doesn't, I think it's one of those things where after the year you look and you say, 'OK, here are the 16 games. Here is what he's done. Here is the consistency.' Then I think you can actually explain or put a value to that player of how the year went. I think it's a little glimpse though. The thing in coaching that happens a lot, I heard this a lot when I was growing in the business when I was younger … All of a sudden you see someone do something and a lot of times the people I worked for – the coordinators or head coach – they would say, 'If he's done it once, it's your job to get that out of him all the time.' That's what you try to do. You see someone do something well and you try to get that all the time from him."

(On if he comes down hard on Taven Bryan after his two penalties against Miami) "It's like anything else – you are trying to get that consistency. I think in your point before, if they start off and are doing well and you get excited and then all of a sudden, you kind of have these setbacks – well now, where are you? Are you down in the dumps? Have you given up? Have you walked away or are you looking to replace [them]? There are a million things. I just try and keep things in perspective as in, it's not where we want to be. Fight through it. It's like anything else. We have all been raised different ways and life is going to kick you in the ass and it's not going to be good all the time. I have to come out here all the time and we aren't going to win games at times and I have to sit there and answer questions. You just have to fight. That's the one thing. If you don't, if you give up on yourself, how is anybody else going to keep you long? Taven has had a setback. He is probably disappointed, but hey, he has to get his mind right and go because there were some things he was doing earlier that were really exciting and would really be able to help our football team. That's what he wants to do, so strap it up and get your ass out there and go play and get better."

(On the difference in Dawuane Smoot) "He's really changed. I will tell you that he's come a long way. I had a talk with him the other day. I think in the beginning just finding who you are. I think he'd be a great person to ask that question to because I have talked to him about it. I think he has really come a long way. I think he's playing well, I think we're going to get some really good snaps out of him. I think we're going to get productivity. I think he has worked extremely hard. He has been under the radar because he's a guy that has been here for a while. He helps us on defense, especially adding depth to the defensive line and he helps us on special teams, too. I'm excited to see where he is. He has worked really hard. He's a guy that has been through a lot, probably a lot more than what most people have read about because he hasn't been a starter, but he has worked his butt off. I'm happy where he is. He has done a nice job. He really has."

(On if he has an injury update on Cedric Ogbuehi) "No, I just think we'll take it day by day. I don't think it's going to be anything crazy though."

(On if he would prefer to be less personally connected this week with dealing with the tough cuts and becoming immune to it) "I don't think you ever become immune to that. I think people who are immune to that are bullshitting. I think people who are immune to that have no appreciation for what these people do. I think they have no appreciation for what goes on and their families. I think it's cowardly. I think it's bullshit and I think I hate people like that. I think if you don't have an appreciation for it, if you don't feel bad about it, then you really shouldn't be in this business. I really feel that way. I get pissed. I do. I'm not an emotional person up or down, but this week is probably … Outside of anything happening in my family or things like that, this is by far the toughest week. I hate it. Like I said before, most of these players – 99.9 percent of them have done everything we have asked, everything the right way. It's difficult. The ones that are easy and are the ones that are guys that are assholes that are not going to make it anyway. You cut them with a smile on your face. You can't get them out of the building fast enough, but we don't have that. We have guys that are truly working their butts off."

(On his perspective on the way the tackles looked with Cam Robinson and Jawaan Taylor) "I think we have some time. I liked the way both players looked and played out there. I think they both have things to improve on for us to be where we want to be. I think they would both tell you that, but I think it's trending in the right direction. As far as Cedric [Ogbuehi], I think [his injury] is just day to day like I said to John [Reid] and like I said, it's nothing crazy. We just have to keep working hard. I think the players are working hard to get better. I think the trainers have a good job and I have to do a good job with the schedule making sure they are able to come back. Health is a big thing. You see it around the league. It is tough. It's a fine line of what to do and what not to do. You don't really know until you get to the season. Like I told you, you all have asked what I think about this or think about that and I'm just trying to get this team healthy and get them in the right state of mind in making sure they are ready to go. I really don't know until we start playing."

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