Jaguars News | Jacksonville Jaguars -

Linebacker Joe Schobert - September 10, 2020

(On what he wants the defensive identity to be in 2020) "Well I think you always want to be a top defense in the NFL, and it starts up front. It starts [with] stopping the run. [Defensive Coordinator] Coach Wash always says to the d-line, 'You earn the right to rush the passer.' So, if I had to choose, I'd say I want our identity to be a run-stopping machine that gets after the passer and creates a lot of turnovers."

(On DE Josh Allen as a player and a leader being named one of the captains) "I think he's doing a great job stepping up and being a vocal leader on the field, getting guys pumped up for practice. I can't wait to see him on game day. You can tell he takes his job, his craft, extremely seriously and he gets the other guys on the defense to along with him. Whether it's staying after practice, working on extra moves, or talking after meetings just to make sure everybody's dotting their I's, crossing their T's. He does a good job with all that stuff."

(On how the defense will stop the Colts this weekend) "I imagine they'll be a similar offense to what they ran in the past and Philip [Rivers] has familiarity with [Colts Head Coach] Frank Reich's scheme being in San Diego back in the day together. I think they're a run first offense and they build everything off of that. They do a good job creating formations to try to out leverage you, try to get you out of your gaps. They're able to take advantage of it and then off of those play actions, they're able to hit shots over the middle and down the field. So, you have to do a really good job stopping the run and knocking that out and that will make the game a little bit easier for us."

(On how much pressure the throws over the middle of the field will put on him) "It's a stressor for any defense, especially when you want to play downhill. But as a defense, we're just going to have to communicate when they get into the looks. When they get into their formations where the threats are there, we all have to be on the same page, and everybody has to be communicating and playing as one and we'll be able to take care of it."

(On the positives aspects of being one of the youngest teams in the league) "Fresh legs for one. Then a lot of young guys just come into the league, you have a chip on your shoulder, you have something to prove. If the team takes their role seriously [and] is accountable, there's a lot of hungry guys in the locker room who are looking forward to making big plays on Sunday. They're not going to be complacent because they haven't done it in the league yet, so they want to build their brand. They want to build their profile and there's a lot of opportunity for that."

(On not knowing how some of the younger guys will play on Sunday without having played in any preseason games) "Yeah, for sure, I think there's going to be a lot of surprises over the NFL in the first couple of months or the first month of the season. With no preseason games, a lot of young guys [are] stepping up into big roles, a lot of old guys coming back. You haven't been put in the situation in preseason to sharpen so you're going to see some surprising things I think until people get their feet under them in terms of their football legs for in games. It's going to be a fun experience. When I get out there, I'm looking forward to seeing what our guys do. I have a lot of confidence in them."

(On what he's seen from the defensive front and if they're capable of stopping the run) "I have the upmost confidence in our guys upfront in doing a good job. Starting with Abry Jones right in the middle, he's the one I'm usually stacked behind. He does a great job being able to keep the double teams off the linebackers, allowing us to get free, chew gaps, and everybody else is doing the same thing. The way their defensive line's taught just to define the gap they're in, so if they get a reach, just define it and our linebackers can play fast and play over the top. I think everybody understands that and when everybody does that, works as one, you see a lot of good things in the run defense."

(On losing defensive lineman early in camp and how the defense has prepared since) "I think the core group that started camp has been able to get a lot of practice in together, understand how to play off of one another. It's going to be fun going into the game on Sunday with those guys. Like we said previously, with no preseason games, [it's' been] a little less of a camp this year in terms of the time. It's going to fun going in on Sunday, but like I said before, I have a lot of respect for our guys up front and we've worked together and jelled as one unit and I think you're going to see good things on Sunday."

(On if the first two weeks against the Colts and the Titans, two teams that like to run the ball, will be two of their toughest tests this season) "I think we're going to start off the season with a bang to two divisional opponents. Those games always count extra just in terms of divisional standings. They're big run-focused offenses and our big focus this year is on the defensive side of the ball to be able to stop the run. So, it's going to be a true test of what we got here in Jacksonville and I'm looking for to it."

(On if the team will surprise a lot of people this year in regards to stopping the run) "I think we're going to surprise a lot of people in all facets of the game, run defense being one of them."

(On what strides he made personally in training camp) "Just getting a new defense under my belt, the new terminology, being able to communicate effectively, growing in those strides has been probably my biggest thing. Once you're able to get familiar, once you're able to get a little settled, then you start trying to recognize what the offense is doing and make your own plays within the scheme. I think I've been able to do that step by step as training camp's gone along. I've gotten more comfortable. [I've] been able to make a couple plays here and there and hopefully just keeping that building as the season goes along."