Todd Wash - Thursday, December 26, 2019

(On the year that Tre Herndon has had this season) "We were talking actually this morning, [Head Coach] Doug Marrone and I, and [Herndon] is playing extremely well right now. He has not given up very many explosive plays. Guys are going to catch a ball on everybody at some point in time, but we are really pleased with his progress. He does exactly what we want him to do, not only in the pass game, but the run game. You saw a couple last week where he was on the backside of some single width formations, and he was down in there trying to get his face on some people. I think the way he is playing is really a lot of credit to him. He has made himself. I think our coaches have done a nice job with Tre, and he is playing real well."

(On how he approached this week with uncertainty around the 2020 season) "I had a good Christmas. But, no, for us, we have our head down and we go. Our players were not in on Monday, so that was a big game-planning day. We met this morning and did a little more game-planning for some of the situational stuff that we see during the week. Once again, whatever happens, happens. We are good with it. I think that we did a nice job with our players. They are playing hard, and I think that is a credit to the character that they have. We will let the chips fall where they may at the end of the year."

(On if he sees Myles Jack as a middle linebacker next season) "I am not really going to get into that – where Myles will be. I know I talked to him earlier in the week, and he looks good. His rehab is going well and whatever position he plays, he will continue to get better."

(On if he hopes that Sunday isn't Yannick Ngakoue's last game with the Jaguars) "I think for Yannick, I want what is best for him. The organization will decide if he is going to be able to come back or not, but I think he has put some really good stuff on tape. We challenged him early in the year, in the offseason when he was here, about playing the run. I think he has improved statistically against the run, and he is rushing the passer well. He has a bright future wherever it may be, but for the organization's sake, I hope he is a Jaguar for a long time."

(On D.J. Hayden) "He is a very tough individual, physically and mentally. That is some of the things that we talk about you have to be to play this game. I think he is underrated. I think we said this a couple weeks ago, what he allows us to do in the run game … He can cover slots man to man. I would definitely say he is underrated for how important he is for our scheme."

(On if the plan going into the season was to use Hayden the way the team has or if his role has evolved) "We play a lot more split safety than we have the previous three years just for different reasons and all that kind of good stuff. When we get into our split safety stuff, he has to be able to play in the box. He has a gap of accountability in the box, so we have not done as much as that in the past as we have this year. Obviously, he has done a really good job of adjusting his role compared to what it was maybe even a year ago. He was out of the fit on almost everything a year ago. This year, he is in the fit quite a bit."

(On if this has been as challenging a year as he has had in his career and if he thinks of it that way due to all that has happened) "No, [I don't think of it that way]. Obviously, we have to play with who we have in the room. It is our job as coaches to try and get them ready to play at a high level. I would not say it is frustrating or anything like that because we have faith in the guys that we have. I think you have to as a coach. Obviously, yes, you wish all of the guys would have stayed healthy and that kind of stuff, but at the same time they didn't, and it's been a great opportunity for some of these younger guys that maybe would not have had an opportunity to put some really good stuff on tape to help them obviously here and other places."

(On how Donald Payne has progressed) "He has progressed a lot. He has had a lot of tackles. He gets himself in position to make a lot of plays. You really see him evolving and learning the MIKE position on the grass. He has done a great job of communicating. For us on defense, we have had very little busts and stuff like that these last couple three, four weeks. It is a credit to him to get us lined up and get us in position to make plays."

(On how difficult it was to sign players off the street and play them right away) "Obviously you would like to have the guys that were penciled in as your starters that we started the season with. There are a lot of teams that this has happened to. Now, has it been to this extent? I don't know. I don't worry about other teams. Once again, it is a credit to our players, the ones that administration has brought in and they have learned the package, they have put themselves in position to make plays and once again, it is a credit to them."

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