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Doug Marrone - Thursday, August 23, 2018

(On how much Blake Bortles has improved as a decision maker) "I think everyone is going to … We look for everyone to be better decision makers because really defensively, we have had the same type of schematics, so those players have been able to adapt and we have made some changes, obviously. Those players grow, and that's what you want to see. For a quarterback, obviously, last year was the first year in this system that we're running. To be able to see better decision making or better command is really expected. That's where we are. Like I said before from the beginning, we saw some growth last year and we're looking for growth again this year out of Blake. He's working hard to attain that. At the end of the day, really what matters is what you do on the field, what you do when you are out there on game day."

(On if his priority is to get a lot of playing time for the starters in this upcoming game) "I think you have to play, that has more been my philosophy. I like to gradually build it up and I like those guys to play. Mentally, play together – communication. I think there is a lot more that goes into it. I think if someone has the potential of maybe they're just feeling off or from a standpoint of injuries, then I take that player right out. There is no need to put him in that situation. But I do believe, and I have always believed, that you get better by playing faster than you do by practicing. I tend to like to play our starters in the third preseason game."

(On if he has ruled anybody out for Saturday's game) "Not yet. We're going to meet. We usually do that tomorrow afternoon and we usually talk to the players before the team meeting because we want everyone preparing like they're going to be ready for play. I'm not going to BS you guys. We want everyone's mindset like, 'I'm playing, I'm playing, I'm playing.'"

(On if he wants that same mindset for injured players such as Brandon Linder) "He still has a shot [of playing]."

(On if he gets more out of watching a guy like Taven Bryan in a preseason game than in practice) "I think I will. I can't speak for the other coaches and I can't speak for [Executive Vice President of Football Operations] Coach [Tom] Coughlin and for [General Manager] David Caldwell, but for me, I do. That is important for me to see him with that game experience because he has not been out there yet."

(On if Taven Bryan is making strides) "Yes, he's ready to go. We'll see how he does in the game."

(On how much it impacts Eli Ankou and Dawuane Smoot to miss practice with injuries) "It affects it a lot, at least for me. Now, again, you guys all understand I don't control the 53-[man roster]. I don't have that. For me, I like to be able to – and I can't speak for Coach [Tom] Coughlin and David Caldwell – but I'm sure … It's a whole lot easier to know who should be on the team and who shouldn't be on the team if you're out there playing. When you're not playing, you have to make probably sometimes some tough decisions. It's no one's fault if the player is injured and he can't be out there to participate. That's not his fault. Injuries happen in the game, but at the same time, we have to make decisions for what is best for the team. Those are tough. Those are tough deals."

(On if he can acknowledge that he has significant input on the 53-man roster) "Oh yeah, I do. We all do [the 53-man roster] together, but I like saying that. You know why I say that? So no one ever asks me those questions. You say, 'Who is going to make the team?' [I say], 'I don't know, you have to ask them.' I was trying to set it up. I was trying to set myself up." (laughter)

(On the difficulty of cutting draft picks) "That's probably a better question to ask the guys that handle personnel. For me, I just want the best players. My belief is that within a team – and I was saying this the other day to a couple of our players – when you're a little kid and you have to choose sides, everyone knew who the best players were, whatever sport you did. When you're in little league baseball, you knew who you wanted on your team. You knew who were the better players. I still think that does it the same. The players [are like that] if they don't have their own agenda like, 'Hey, this is my buddy. I want him to make the team. He should be here.' I think the players know who the best players are. I really do. I think it's our responsibility to make sure that we put the best players out there together that we trust. I think that's important. I think a lot of times everybody within knows who should start at what position."

(On his take on players training somewhere else during the offseason break) "I think with the CBA now, I think it's good. The one thing with the CBA is we're not allowed to do it. The only thing that I get concerned about is it's not as much the nutritional part or the training part, the weightlifting and things of that nature; it's more of the technical part [that I get concerned about.] I would hope that players know enough about what we ask of them that they will be able to go there and train those things and do well. I don't have any issues with that. If anything, I would probably encourage it more than I would not encourage it."

(On if there was a point where he felt like it all clicked for Myles Jack at middle linebacker) "I don't know. Last year when it was like, 'What's going on? They moved Myles?' I was thinking to myself, 'Either of those things could happen.' It's not because of the way Myles is playing, it's just best for our defense to put him in this way. I have always thought that he played well. I think early on as a rookie, every player has to get used to the schematics and the speed. I thought he adjusted extremely well and quickly and we felt fortunate that we knew we could play him at either position and play well enough to win. I don't know if there was that moment. That does happen with a lot of players."

(On if Myles Jack raised his game in last year's postseason) "He played well all three years. He really did. He was a high-level performer in college. He got a lot of notoriety playing both ways. We think we have better running backs and he thinks he can play running back. He might not admit that. He has a chip on his shoulder. He's one of those guys that wants to go out there every day and prove how good he is. The guys on defense get a lot of attention, but those other guys that are on that defense are pretty good football players. You can't play good defense if you have a weakness. People are too good. They will attack it. We feel good about all those players that maybe don't get the notoriety or the spotlight and things of that nature. There are a couple of those guys on defense."

(On the offensive line) "Andrew [Norwell] will be playing, so that's good to get him playing. He had been chomping at the bit to get back. [Brandon] Linder, I don't want to give any false intentions – we are just [holding him back] to see where he's going. It's like Mike [Kaye] asked before, we haven't made a final decision yet on that. If it is close then obviously I won't play him. That's what I will do. I think it's good. J.P. [Jermey Parnell] will be playing. A.J. [Cann] will be playing. I think it's important that those guys can go in there. I know people think it's more of the continuity of playing together and I think that's such a broad range when people talk about continuity. I'm not as concerned about the performance end of playing with someone else or playing with someone different. The continuity is how they're going to push themselves, what they're going to talk about on the sideline, what they're going to do at halftime, if something happens how are they going to correct it as a group? Those are the things I look to more than continuity of the five guys always being there, always playing together because I think that's an unrealistic fact in this league because of injury."

(On if he notices the new uniforms or helmets) "I'm so not the uniform [guy]. I am so not that guy. I remember when I went back to college and I wanted to go back to the uniforms that I wore when I was a player at Syracuse. We're talking about Syracuse University. It was a big thing in college with all these jerseys, all these different jerseys. It was overwhelming for me. First of all, I'm not the most, and you guys know, I have zero style. I still think, I still call it a dungaree jacket because it's a denim jacket. She won't let me wear it and it's my favorite jacket. When it comes to the uniforms – the Syracuse thing – I told the AD, I'm more concerned about what is in the uniform than the uniform. That's how my philosophy has been. I'm more concerned about what we're putting in those uniforms than what we are. I do think if the players are happy I think that's important. I did find that out, that the players, it is important now that the players like it."

(On if he liked the two-tone helmet) "I don't know. I could care less. As long as it's the best helmet, protection-wise. I feel bad. I'm the worst person to talk about stuff like that."

(On if he would wear a Canadian tuxedo) "You guys are killing me. No, but I do own a tux. We have to go to the College Football Awards Ceremony at the Waldorf [Astoria]. That's every year. It's black tie. I used to have to go to black-tie events when my wife was an attorney for her thing. Then I think I had one other black-tie event. I thought to rent a tuxedo is going to cost me $120, maybe I should buy one. In the long run, if I'm not a fat [mass] then I will be able to use this tuxedo for a while. I went out and then I went to the tuxedo place and that's the only place I could ever shop. I said I wanted the most conservative tuxedo that I can use for weddings, receptions, parties and all that stuff. I have the same one."

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