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Jaguars Offensive Coordinator Jay Gruden: Wednesday, November 18, 2020

(On rookie WR Collin Johnson) "Obviously he has great length and size. That's great and now we're just trying to hone in and refine his receiver route-running skills. He's a tough kid, [it'] just a matter of really honing in. Keenan [McCardell's] doing a great job with him. His coming in and out of breaks is important, the depth of routes. He's a big target which is positive. We're trying to figure out ways to get him more involved, but he's coming along at a good rate."

(On the Steelers' front seven) "We're going to have to step up. We have to raise our game to a level that we haven't seen yet, so I think the opportunity's there for us when we're playing an elite team like Pittsburgh. They're not undefeated just because of their defense, they're playing with great team effort. They're physical, they can run, they pursue the football, but most of all they're really sound in what they do. They protect the edges very well at those outside linebackers. Their inside linebackers can run. Their inside defensive linemen are big and strong. [Steelers DT Cameron] Heyward's one of the best in business at his position. Safety, Minkah [Fitzpatrick]'s doing a heck of a job of just being a ball hawk and obviously their corners are holding up very well. So really not a lot of weaknesses there. They're sound, they're tough, they're strong, and they run the ball."

(On getting other running backs involved to give RB James Robinson rest) "Yeah, I mean you'd always like to sprinkle the ball around and make sure James is fresh, especially going into the fourth quarter in some of these close games. But for the most part we're trying to establish the run and be physical. We know what James can do and what he brings to the table. As long as he's healthy, as long as his stamina's in check, then I think he needs to get the ball. That's the first, second down back that you expect now. Hopefully, we can spell him a little bit more. Unfortunately, Chris [Thompson] went out last week early in the game. Hopefully, we can spell him more with [Devine] Ozigbo or Dare [Ogunbowale] so we can utilize those guys as well."

(On the culture of the Steelers allowing them to be consistent throughout the years) "You have to credit [Steelers Head Coach] Coach Tomlin, number one. He's done a great job at keeping that thing together and obviously Big Ben [Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger] has a lot to do with that. He's the calming influence back there at quarterback. You have stability at quarterback, you have a head coach, you have a system in place that you build your system around and throughout the draft and free agency and everything works well. They've been fortunate they've had some different pieces, but the main parts are still there. Coach Tomlin obviously, Big Ben, and some of these other guys that have been there for a while. Hats off to them. It's something that every franchise strives to be, consistent, a winner, somebody who's always in the mix at the end of the year, and that's something we're trying to get to with our young football team."

(On what players like WR Laviska Shenault Jr. and Steelers WR Chase Claypool can bring to an offense) "I haven't really watched their offense. I've been studying their defense and I just know Claypool coming out of Notre Dame was a big, physical guy. Obviously they're utilizing him with the jet sweeps and some other things, and he can run. He's getting behind the defense, so it's not like you can just sit on him [and say], 'Oh, he's going to run a jet sweep.' He can run by you as well, so he has a great arsenal of weapons that he can utilize in his game at wide receiver and Laviska's the same way. He's developing as a good receiver. Unfortunately the injuries this year have hindered him a little bit in that development, but we expect Laviska to have that type of impact on our offense when he's totally healthy, so we can't wait for that date. We might have to be a little bit patient though."

(On if QB Jake Luton is ready for this weekend) "I think so. I think you have to be. He started off his career already against Houston, a rivalry of this franchise, and he had to go up to Green Bay and face Aaron Rodgers in horrible, windy conditions for a quarterback. Now we just have to face the [9-0] Steelers, so it'll be a great challenge for him, but I know he's going to be ready to go. I think it's very important for our entire offense to understand this challenge and really raise their game up, hopefully to a level we haven't seen yet."

(On the inconsistency in the number of targets for WR DJ Chark Jr.) "Probably the weather a little bit and us failing on third down early in the game. We had four conversions early in the game we should've converted very easily and unfortunately, we missed a throw, we dropped the ball, we slipped coming out of a break and we had to punt. So there's really no rhyme or reason for it, just a matter of we have to maintain drives and have more opportunities to get him the ball. Also, we were trying to get James [Robinson] the ball, make a constant effort against Green Bay in that weather to really try to run the ball and get 22, 23 carries. All that plays a factor in it. You try to be a physical team, establish the run, obviously receivers are going to get less targets."

(On WR Chris Conley stepping up for the injured WR Laviska Shenault Jr.) "He's been great about it. He's been a total pro about how he's handled this year. He could've obviously gone on and tanked or become an issue on and off the field, but he's one of the hardest working players we have in practice, if not the hardest. He hasn't griped a little bit. We've had some conversations about his role and his role is very critical to this football team, being a receiver, understanding all three positions, and being able to fill in whenever asked. He's made some big plays in every game this year and he's going to continue to do it, so we're very pleased with Chris, his leadership and his ability to take on whatever role we ask of him."

(On factors that contribute to the game, including the length of the grass last week in Green Bay) "That's a good question. We had some critical plays and players that slipped and fell in that game. Obviously it was a little bit wet, but I think the grass has something to do with it. I think Chris [Conley] fell down on one of his routes. It was a critical point in the game. It was a third down play, [he] would've been wide open but Jake [Luton] obviously missed him. The grass has something to do with it. I can't control that nor can our players but hopefully in the future they'll use a lawn mower."