Skip to main content

Jaguars News | Jacksonville Jaguars -

Transcript - Jaguars Cornerback Shaquill Griffin: March 18, 2021

(On the decision and process in joining the Jacksonville Jaguars) "The process actually went pretty smoothly, it had some ups and downs, you know, being my first one. But I'm going to have to give huge thanks to my team and my support system, by keeping me updated, keeping this anxiety really, really low, not knowing what could be next. I've got to say thank you to them. And Jacksonville was just a clear choice, after knowing that I just needed a fresh start, and everything is just new here. Coming back to Florida, being able to have the opportunity to be a part of something new and something great and something special, I feel like that's the part that I was looking forward to. And don't get me wrong, I've built a life and some great friends and some great relationships in Seattle. But I also learned so much and knowing that there is a business aspect behind it, everything that I have learned, that's something that I hold dear to my heart. But now, it's starting my own journey. You know, I'm behind a group that was called the 'Legion of Boom' at the time. It's always something that they had going on already and now I've got a chance to be a part of something great, something new, something different that we can call our own. So, I'm excited about that. I think that's the most exciting thing – writing my own journey, my own story with an organization that truly believes in me, the same way I believe in them."

(On the value of coming back to Florida) "Of course, you know. You're talking about a guy who is coming out of Central Florida in Orlando and then he flies across the country to the furthest place you can go. It's different and it just feels good. It feels right to be back in Florida. I had a conversation with my mom earlier, on the way here, and she was asking me how I felt. And the only words I had [were] that it feels right. It feels right, you know, taking it all in – you could see I'm like a little kid in a candy store for the first time. So, I like that excitement, it feels great and it makes you want to go even harder. I feel like I can get started right now if I needed to. That's the type of excitement that I have and it just feels good to be back home. This is where it all started, I went to college ball and played here in Florida. Now, I'm back and I'm playing at the highest level back in Florida. It doesn't get better than that, it doesn't. So, it feels good to be back."

(On whether he's hoping to play with his brother, Seattle Seahawks LB Shaquem Griffin) "Of course, but at the end of the day, like I said, I know there's a business behind it. And my main thing I told him, 'Just don't make a decision off [of] where I'm going, do what's best for you. You're your own athlete, you have your own story to write and at the end of the day, our story that we have together will always be there and we're still writing it. It doesn't matter if you go to the same team or a different team.' But we're hoping for the best and hopefully—you know, the best decision is coming here. But we just don't know yet, but until then, I'm supporting wherever he goes and whatever is best for him."

(On how much of a role Jaguars Head Coach Urban Meyer played in his decision to join the team) "I feel like the main thing of the part that he played was [that] I know for a fact that he wasn't going to be afraid to utilize me in any way possible and put me in the best situation to be able to help this team win ball games. And coming from the college background, he has no problem switching it up and changing it up. He's an aggressive coach, he knows how to win. And coming from a winning organization, this is something that I want to bring, and the same way he feels. I think he's [one of the] winningest coaches to ever do it in history. So, I'm coming behind that, that's something that I believe in, something that I support. I'm following a guy that believes in winning, that knows how to win—and I believe in the same thing. So, that's a person that I trust. And I feel like that played a huge part, knowing that this is a guy that is going to take us exactly where we need to go and he's going to put the right pieces together to put us in position to win games that we need to win."

(On the importance of creating a legacy in Jacksonville and turn around a team that is 1-15) "I don't have to do anything outrageous. I just feel like if I come and be completely who I am and completely who I am to this game and give the same to my peers, to my teammates, these coaches, I feel like that's all we need to do. Just bring your true self—I don't need to be anybody that I'm not, so I won't be that. I'm just going to give them everything that I have to give as a player and as a man, on and off the field. And I'm hoping [that] me doing that and being the leader that I am, it trickles down. It becomes so contagious that everybody is doing it. And that's how you turn your program around, when everybody is buying in and believing the same thing. My job here is to get everybody to believe the same way I do. Even if they don't see it yet, my job is to get them to see it, because getting this program, this organization back to where we need to be, first before it even starts. So, that's why I'm here. And I'm not going to change anything or do anything outrageous, I'm just going to be my true self and I'll give these guys exactly who I really am and nobody else."

(On what he learned in Seattle that will help him be a leader for the younger guys in the Jaguars defensive back room, like Jaguars CB CJ Henderson) "Just being teachable and coachable. At the end of the day—you brought up CJ [Henderson] being a young guy, [that] doesn't mean I can't learn from him. And the same way, if I'm talking for myself and I'm talking to CJ, he can't be the guy who feels like, 'Okay I already know it all,' because there's so much more to learn. It doesn't matter if you're year one, year two or year twelve. There's so much more in this game that you can learn, and this game continues to evolve. So, like I said before, the main thing is that everybody's got to believe in something. So, my main thing is I'm going to take this leadership and whatever I do know already from my experience, I'm going to give it to somebody who may need it. It doesn't matter who it is, as long as the guy is going to learn, I'm going to continue to teach. But I'm the same way, I don't think I know it all, so if it's a young guy or an older guy, I want to take whatever I need that's going to help us win games. I'm going to be coachable. But like I said before, we're only as strong as our weakest link and we don't need [any] weak links on this team, so we've got to be able to hold each other accountable and we've all got to be coachable and teachable. So, we've all just got to buy in on the same page and believe in something. So, I'm excited for that, but yeah, I'm just going to be the leader they need me to be."

(On whether of his new defensive teammates have started reaching out to him yet) "Yeah, well, I knew Sidney Jones already, so they put me in a group chat. At first when I saw the group chat, I thought it was someone in Seattle, I was like, 'Okay, maybe they're saying congratulations.' And then I saw all of these new names and stuff, that really got me excited—to know that everybody is already buying in before I even get here. So, at this point, I think I'm just ready to see everybody. If I could, I would find a way to take everybody to dinner just to sit down and talk to them. That's how excited I am. But yeah, I knew Sidney Jones already coming in, I know Rayshawn Jenkins, we grew up—you're talking about at 6 or 7 years old, we grew up together. So, that's someone dear to me. But now I'm just ready to meet all of the guys who I haven't met yet and build that relationship. You know, I'm giving my true self and I'm definitely a humble guy and somebody they can trust, somebody they can believe in and count on. So, I want to get a chance to show the guys that."

(On whether the opportunity to be cornerback No. 1 was the sales pitch to him from the Jaguars) "No, it was never about being the No. 1 corner, that's not even something that they mentioned. I know at the end of the day, I've still got to come here and compete, even though the money comes behind it. But I'm not here to think, 'Okay they're just giving me the job.' I'm coming here to compete with whoever is here. At the same time as me competing, I went the guys to do the same thing, because that's only going to make us better as a group. So, there was never [any] discussion about who's cornerback No. 1 or No. 2 or No. 3, it didn't matter. At the end of the day, I think they brought me here because they know I love this game, I'm passionate about it and I'm going to do whatever it takes to make my teammates better and I want them to do the same for me. So, it was never about who's No. 1, we're all going to make each other better. Because at the end of the day, it could be cornerback No. 1, he goes down, somebody's got to be ready to step up and I've got to hold everybody accountable. So, no cornerback one, no cornerback two, we're all going to be great together as a unit."

(On the transition between going to Seattle and being in a room with veterans and then now coming to Jacksonville and being in a room with rookies that are looking up to him in the same way) "When I first met them, it was nerve-racking. I didn't know what to expect going to a group that has so much established already and then they gave a chance to a young guy like me. So, yeah, I was just trying to do everything right. At that point, I was just trying to do everything right, whatever they told me to do, I was trying to get it done. And now being that guy—but like I said, I learned so much from Seattle, I know what it takes to be a leader, I know how to talk to certain players, coach them up to their own personal way. So, I've learned that, so I'm just going to take whatever I've learned. I'm just going to preach it, I'm going to continue to inspire and continue to show everybody how it's done. But I have no problem taking that pressure upon myself to be that guy that everybody looks up to. I've been there before, so it's nothing new. I love that pressure, if anybody can take the pressure off somebody else's back, I've always been that guy that'll try to take it. So, I'm excited for the challenge, but at the end of the day, I'm going to compete at everything that I do, and I want those guys to be able to trust me and see that. And I'll let them know that I can be a leader and a person you can count on in the secondary to put us in some great positions to be great as a secondary. We're trying to be number one, so that's always the goal and that's what we're going to do."

(On how much the Jaguars pitched to him that he could be on the ground floor of reinventing the franchise) "Well, I don't think it was really anything they had to pitch. It was just something that you can see. You could see the change that they were making, the change that they made, it shows you how important it is for them to try to even get back to where they want to be. And me just seeing that, they didn't even have to tell me that, I've seen it myself and I believed in it. At the end of the day, you've got to believe in something. When I [saw] that, that's something I want to be a part of. I could only imagine we're coming from where we were last year, to one of the most winningest teams onto the next season, I want to be a part of that. That's something that we can talk about this time next year, going into the season. And we [could] have the same discussion like, 'Man, you said you were going to do it.' I want to have those types of talks, I want to be a part of that history. So, that's the part that I'm believing in, that I'm excited for. So, yeah, it was no sales pitch. I've seen it coming myself, I've seen everything kind of unfolding and I just want to be a part of it."

(On whether he's met with the coaching staff yet and if so, how those meetings have been) "Yeah, I've kind of met with pretty much everybody. I didn't get a chance to sit down with everybody for a period of time, but the people that I did get a chance to sit down with, I think I was having too much fun. Because I was over time and I was supposed to be going to different places and everything has a timeframe. And I think I was overdoing it, I was getting too excited. You know, 10 or 20-minute talks turned into 30 to an hour. I think that was my fault, so I'll take the blame for that one. I was having too much fun and it was great getting the coaches to understand who I am, how my personality is. And everybody is accepting, with open arms, so I had too much fun, today. I actually did."