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12 June 2018

Transcript: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mini-Camp Media Availability (6/12/18)

Below is a selection of Tampa Bay Buccaneers quotes from today’s earlier media availability:
Head Coach Dirk Koetter
Defensive End Jason Pierre-Paul
Quarterback Jameis Winston
(On Jameis Winston’s accuracy during the offseason program)
“Well, we chart it every day and so we have a number on it. When you’re going in shorts like we are, the speed, I personally don’t put a whole bunch into it because we’re working on different stuff, we’re working on whatever we’re emphasizing right now. I’d say, just in general, that we’re not where we need to be but I don’t think that’s any big sharp criticism. We need to be better across the board, offensively, than we are right now. That’s not an indictment of Jameis [Winston]. So, I don’t think it makes much of difference compared to where he was last year.”
(On if it’s been more competitive than last year and if that’s what he wants to see)
“Way more competitive. Yes and no. Yes, within the rules of phase three. We’re not playing real rules right now so you have to govern/temper everything you say with that.”
(On red zone takeaways)
“Turnovers, when the red shirts [defense] make a turnover, that’s good for the Bucs. But when the white shirts [offense] turn it over, it’s bad for the Bucs. So, every play out here against each other is half the people happy and half the people sad.”
(On what stood out to him today)
“I really wouldn’t say anything stood out other than that we had a full complement. Today’s the same as the 10 practices we had before in OTAs, juts everybody was here today.”
(On if he had a chance to look at defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul)
“A little bit. Again, it’s shorts football. We’ve all seen plenty of tape on Jason Pierre-Paul and nothing is going to happen in a day of practicing in shorts and helmets that’s going to change any of that.”
(On if Pierre-Paul can catch up faster than the average player because of his experience)
“I think that has to do with the position you play. Number one, the guy’s got experience and it’s not like he’s playing quarterback. So, it’s no big secret why he was brought here. He was brought here to rush the passer and he probably didn’t forget how. If he’s been working out like he says he has been, then I’m sure it’s going to pay off for us down the line.”
(On how he thinks defensive end Demone Harris can help the Bucs)
“How do I think he can [help]? The same way the other 90 guys out here are trying to bust their tails to help us do that right now. I don’t think he can help us any more than anybody else. But, he can do the best he can and that’s really all.”
(On if this is a big year for quarterback Jameis Winston)
“I’d like to see that coach that stands up here and says it’s not a big year for that team. I think it’s probably big for everybody.”
(On linebacker Adarius Taylor’s injury and offseason work)
“Number one, when you go back and look at the injury Adarius had, it’s somewhat of a medical miracle that he’s out here practicing full speed. The second thing that jumps out is he changed his name, he got married and he’s playing all three linebacker spots. So, I’d say Adarius has really stepped up so far and is doing everything he can to help”
(On what he hopes to get out of minicamp)
“Well we’re finishing our install, number one. We really look at minicamp as three more OTAs. You have 10 OTAs so we just call it install 11, install 12, install 13, so we’re at the tail end of both sides. So, defense put in some more of their exotic pressures today. We worked some short yardage. We’re going to work some goal line tomorrow. Again, think about working goal line with no pads on. But you have to put it in, you have to introduce it to them so when you come back in the fall, the guys have been exposed to everything they’re going to be exposed to in training camp. Finishing the installation, getting as many guys on the same page, setting our body weight goals, our conditioning goals. Today was a good taste of what training camp is like. It’s also one of the reasons we like to practice in the morning. But, guys got their final weigh-ins today before coming back for five weeks. So, we’ll put body weights on some guys and it’s going to be a measuring stick for where they need to be, conditioning-wise, when they come back.”
(On what cornerback David Rivers can contribute)
“He’s a guy with good length and a guy that knows what he’s doing a lot more now so he has a chance to show up more.”
(On if he focuses on hype, or the lack of, surrounding the team)
‘I’m the wrong guy to talk to about that because I don’t believe in hype either way. The lesson is we were 5-11 and didn’t get it done. We were 3-7 in one score games so that’s all that matters. We have enough talent to be fine. We have to play better, we have to coach better. Nothing has changed about that.”
(On which players have impressed him by their offseason body composition changes)
“Well, I’d say it’s a little bit hard to change your body in eight weeks. We’re going into week nine of the offseason. Everybody that’s here is working hard. We’ve had some guys who are in weight gain, we have some guys who are in weight loss. That will continue on through the week. Anybody who’s out here working hard impresses me so I’m impressed with all of these guys.”
(On which injured players should be ready to return in time for training camp)
“Most. There are still three or four guys coming off of surgeries that we’ll have to wait and see when they get back. As you may or may not know, when rookies can come back a couple days before the vets, also injured players; those guys can come back. So we’ll know a lot more that last week in July. Guys like [Demar Dotson] and Kendell Beckwith and J.R. [Sweezy] all the guys that are still out with injuries. We’ll have a lot better feel for where they’re at then. Then Jason [Licht] will make a decision on what he’s going to do with the roster.”
(On the fast, no-huddle tempo used at the beginning of practice)
“That was a two-minute period today. We always do some sort of an 11-on-11, no huddle, in period three. We try to set the tempo. That happened to be a no huddle situation where we needed a touchdown and the defense won them both today. We’re going to do a different version of that on Wednesday. Tomorrow the tempo setting will be no huddle, red zone.”
(On wide receiver Chris Godwin’s offseason work)
“I know you guys couldn’t be out here every single day but if you were out here every day, you would have noticed Chris as one of the guys that every day made some kind of highlight play, on top of being very consistent.”
(On what he likes about defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul)
“He has both of those [edge rush ability and endurance]. He played a ton of plays last year. We really don’t want him to play that many but he doesn’t like to come off the field. If we can hold our depth, right now it looks like we’re going to be pretty deep on the defensive line, much deeper than we have been. If we can hold that depth, that helps everybody. When you guys talked to Noah [Spence] last week, even Vinny Curry who’s an experienced veteran, those guys like to learn from each other. All that does, when you add another guy to the group that they haven’t been around before, is add more experience. They can share that with each other. They’ve been doing a good job of that.”
(On determining defensive rotation)
“I think it will definitely evolve through training camp and then you’ll start to settle in in the season. We have a long way to go on that. But, it’s a nice problem to have right now. It doesn’t always work out that way. As we know, there’s injuries and you just never know what’s going to happen.”
(On how he feels about depth on the offensive line)
“I feel great. I feel great about it. I have to feel great. Those are our guys. As I saiy all the time, ‘your guys are your guys,’ and you better feel great about them because that’s who you’ve got.”
(On if he can read individual progress even though players can’t hit)
“It’s tougher on the lines for sure when they can’t hit. Caleb [Benenoch] played a lot of football last year so we look at Caleb as a starting talent whether he ends up in the starting five or not. He has started games for us before. So really the guy you’re talking about the most there with the least experience is Leonard Wester. He’s played a little bit. These reps that he’s gotten have been invaluable. If Dot’s back and ready to roll in the fall, which I think he will be, then Leonard’s reps will be cut back. So, he should be taking advantage of this. Cole Gardner on the other side, since Donovan [Smith] has been in and out a little bit this spring, that guy is one of the biggest surprises probably of offseason.”
(On tight end Antony Auclair’s injury)
“He’s got an ankle situation going on right now. It’s not significant but he will not be working in this camp.”
(On rookie running back Ronald Jones’ performance thus far)
“He does take it serious and Ronald is very talented. We like what he’s doing. He’s got plenty to work on and right now, we have time to do it.”
(On rookie running back Shaun Wilson)
“We did a ton of work on Ronald Jones. I did no work on Shaun Wilson. Jason [Licht] and the scouts did so that guy has impressed me because I didn’t know about him. I’m not saying any more than Ronald Jones because Ronald Jones was one of the best backs in the draft, right up there at the top. But, Shaun Wilson has done a really nice job. He’s a smaller guy so durability will be the question. But he had a nice punt return today, really good hands, good route runner. He’s smart, he’s picked things up.”
(On if the coaches will change the offensive scheme to give Chris Godwin more touches)
“If you guys had your way, we’d adjust our offense around about 20 guys. You can start naming off all the guys you think we should adjust the offense around. I’m being serious, I’m really serious right now. There’s one ball to go around so we have to make it work.
(On his offseason)
"The offseason's been hectic, man, a lot of moving around and getting situated, but I'm here now."
(On the reason behind not attending voluntary OTAs)
"A lot of moving around, bringing my stuff from Jersey, making sure my son's situated – that's basically it."
(On if he was still training while away from the team)
"Of course. I always train."
(On his impressions of the Buccaneers so far)
"I don't know, man. Today's my first day, I'm just getting here. I'm ready to work, really, and see what guys have in store, what I'm working with, and really getting myself better."
(On how much he still has to learn)
"I'm a pro, man, so I'm going to get it right. That's nothing. I'm a pro, that's how I go about it and I'm already catching on to a lot of things. It's just different terminology. That's basically it."
(On what he brings to the team aside from sacks)
"Effort, man. I think you start by effort and determination. Every guy has to be determined to win, to think of winning and putting in the work. I think if we put in the work we'll be fine."
(On if had missed practicing in the Tampa heat)
"You see me sweating. I'm ready to go in the AC. The Florida weather is pretty nice, especially when I get in my car."
(On what it means to him to be back in Tampa)
"It means a lot, you know. It means a lot. It's been nine years. I know everybody's excited – I'm excited, my family's excited [that I'm] closer to home. So I'm really pumped. I think this is going to be one of my best years."
(On not attending OTAs)
"We've got training camp. Training camp is going to be here and I will be here. So you'll get a chance to see me then."
(On quarterback Jameis Winston)
"He's a great guy, man. I came in and he was one of the first guys I actually talked to, besides Lavonte David, who I went to school with, junior college with. [Winston] was one of the first guys that talked to me when I came in and then he talked to me again when I came yesterday. That means a lot, man. Building a chemistry with a team and a teammate, it starts by talking and getting to know your players, and that's what he does. He's a great quarterback, he's a great leader."
(On texting with defensive end Vinny Curry)
"I texted a lot of guys, told them the reason why I was going to be out, and they understand. I texted the coaches, the head coach and the other coaches and let them know. Guys understand. So we have that chemistry already with those guys that I texted."
(On if the job can be stressful)
"It can, it can be stressful. I'm just blessed in the situation – I'm home and I'm close to the family. I've got a lot of support behind me. It's not easy being a football player."
(On being back where he played his college football)
"It feels like a dream. To be honest it feels like a dream, I'm still dreaming. Being in red, it's a big change in my career. It's been eight years with the Giants and now I'm here for Year Nine. It's a big change, but I'm ready and I'm up for it. I'm up for the change and I know I'm going to bring my best game and show those guys, too."
(On what he's getting out of a three-day, non-contact mini-camp)
"I'm going to be doing a lot of running to the ball, get some terminology down, which I'm pretty much – we've been in meetings and I'm understanding a lot. Just different words, like I said. That's basically it, and then come back and get ready for training camp."
(On defensive tackle Gerald McCoy being a team leader and whether he will also try to be a team leader)
"That's a good question right there, man. No, but obviously Gerald's been the guy here and I'm all for falling behind him, and we're going to do it together, man. I'm a guy, I don't really speak much. Everybody sees my effort and stuff from my play and my football game. I'm not a vocal leader, man. That's something I've never been, you just see it in my game, my effort."
(On how much he has been in contact with Defensive Line Coach Brentson Buckner)
(On if he can make up what he missed in OTAs over the next three days)
"Can you make up? Of course. Like I said, I'm a pro. Even though I wasn't here I was at home studying and making sure I know the calls, the installs. That's just something you do. You keep [doing] your work, keep working out – every day I woke up at 6:00 a.m. and went to the gym, got out of there at 8:00 a.m. Just stuff I've been doing, I've been keeping up, so it's not – like I said, it was a situation that I had to take care of. I took care of it and now I'm here."
(On what he remembers about playing at Raymond James Stadium for USF)
"What I remember about playing there, man, I was still raw, if that's what you call it. I was still raw. Playing there, there were so many fans that we had from USF, the fans that came out and showed support. Just playing there was crazy. For a stadium to be that open, how loud it gets. I'm prepared for that this year. I know that they're going to bring it."
(On being reunited with former junior college teammate Lavonte David)
"It means a lot. It just means the work that he put in. I don't think people know how hard it is to stay in the NFL. You've got guys that come in for one year and never play again. The average is three years, and for him to be doing it this long and for me to do it eight years, that's a long time. I already can see we've got the chemistry, because we were out there and we were going over the plays in the indoor [facility] and Coach said something and I looked over to him, I said, 'Hey, I'm going to do this. Do I got to let you know.' He said, 'Nah, I already know.' So we have that chemistry already. To see him and to be with one of the players I played with, I'm excited to see him."
(On his expectations for the team)
"The expectations, man, for every team is to win the Super Bowl, right? That's the expectations for basically every team. Every year you come in and you think you're going to do it, but the reality is, it's not like that. Like I said, it starts with hard work, dedication, communication. That's basically it, and being determined. It's not just saying it, it's actually doing it. It's something like coming in and Coach was just talking about respect and everything, how you should respect [everyone]. They had a team meeting [about] showing respect or whatever. Just listening – I've been with the Giants and I've been here, so just listening I can see that the guys are interacting and they're ready to go."
(On people saying he hasn't been what he used to be since the accident with his hand)
"I think it's B.S. But, no, that's what challenges me. My obstacle in life, I overcame. Everybody has their own obstacles; mine was my injury and I overcame that. So nobody can say anything to put me down. As I see myself, I'm only going up. If people say I'm not the same or whatever, just wait and see, man. Every year's a different year."
(On playing a high percentage of snaps)
"Oh yeah, last year I think I played every snap. That says a lot right there. That just tells you that no matter how tough the game is going or you're winning, I want to be out there. Mostly the defense was on the field a lot of times last year with the Giants."
(On the Giants having Super Bowl expectations last year)
"Yeah, you see what happened. Like I said, I've been on a Super Bowl team, I've been on teams that expected to be in the Super Bowl and never went to the Super Bowl. All I can say man, when it comes to a Super Bowl team – even Vinny [Curry] can tell you – when it comes to a Super Bowl team it's all about the communication and respect that you've got for guys, and everybody coming together. There's no beef in between."
(On if he welcomes the opportunity to get out of the pressure of New York)
"I got drafted there. No matter I would have been drafted, I would have still been the player I am today. New York has been good to me, but now I'm in Tampa, so it's a different feel. It's like I'm back home. The feeling is there, the drive for me to play even harder now. My son, he's growing up, he knows that I had to move to Tampa and he knows I’m not part of New York any more. This is where I'm at, so I'm ready go hard."
(On if he's energized by the move)
"You know what? Change is very good. Change is very good and I'm accepting the change. It's a big change but at the end of the day I've still got to work, like you’ve got to work. I'm here to work. Gotta work."
(On the Buccaneers not having a double-digit sack player since 2005)
"We've just got to change that. That's why it's a new team, everything. We've got to change that."
(On the first day of mini-camp)
“It’s amazing. What a beautiful day. We’ve got a little cloud coverage, we get out there and play some great Buccaneer football.”
(On connecting with defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul when he joined the team)
“I’m just trying to build a relationship with everybody. Obviously we’re excited to have him here and I’m just happy that everyone’s here. So, it’s time to go.”
(On building chemistry with wide receiver DeSean Jackson)
“I think the whole offseason is very important. Obviously, me and DeSean have done some good work towards that. Definitely having two years up under our belts is going to help in terms of our performance together.”
(On how this offseason is different for him than past years)
“I have the same goal every year and that’s to get better every single day and improve and that’s what I’m striving to do this year.”
(On if he worked on his deep ball in the offseason)
“Absolutely. After you take a good look at what I need to improve on the most, deep ball comes up every single year. So, I’m definitely focusing on that and getting with my guys to see how we can make that possible.”
(On taking more deep ball reps)
“You’re repping them with the guys that you’re going to throw it to and you make it happen out there. It’s kind of similar to backyard football; throw it out there and let them go get it.”
(On the ongoing NFL investigation)
“My focus has remained with this offseason and with this team. Definitely with the start of mini-camp, we’re excited to be out here today. So, my concentration still remains with this organization and our team.”
(On if this offseason feels more energized)
“I know I’m trying to put out as much energy as I can bring. If the guys are saying it, then I agree. It’s good when everyone is on the same page. I think everyone is feeling a little bit different, a little more confident and that’s a good thing.”
(On what a run-pass option could add to the offense)
“I think whatever we do to execute it, [it has] the capability to work really good for us. It’s definitely giving us more options, it requires more learning and us being right the majority of the time. We have to work together as a team and make sure it works.”
(On the need for more wins)
‘I think everything in life comes down to are you winning or are you losing, and definitely at the quarterback position. In any terms of athletics, it’s about winning. Winning games will make people forget a lot of things. Winning games will make people bring up unnecessary things. As long as we’re winning I’m happy and you guys [the media] are happy too [when we’re winning].
(On how he judges his career so far)
“Again, I look to improve every single year. From year one to year two, I had improvement which matters most. I declined last year so I definitely have to get back up on winning. I think that is one of the most important things, definitely, playing this position.”
(On improvements to the defensive line)
“That’s a good thing. Iron sharpens iron so as long as they’re pushing us, we’re getting better as well. I’m just excited to have everybody here. I’m excited for the great forces we have up front and our whole defense overall is just playing tremendous right now. Like I said, that’s what makes us better.”
(On if he prefers that there appear to be lower expectations from the public this offseason)
“It’s not really about the outside sources. It’s about us collectively, as a team, getting together and backing each other and going out there and executing and winning ball games.”
(On the biggest lesson learned from last season)
“Just win more. When we lose, come together so we can win more.”
(On where his game needs to improve)
“Just on putting us in a better position to win. I think that’s the most important thing. We have to win, we have to win some games.”
(On if urgency ramps up from year to year)
”One of the things that we always talk about is who we are every single day. From day to day, despite your emotions or how you feel that day, you have to come with that same level of urgency every day. In every profession that’s tough. But here, in this profession when all of the spotlight is on us all of the time, we have to find a way to overcome any adversity that we may be facing at home or even in the locker room. We have to make sure that we’re our best selves out here on this football field.”
(On if he trusts in his work ethic)
“My work ethic is unparalleled when it comes to on and off the field. I do everything in this community and for this football team that I possibly can to get better. Now, I can get better at that as well. Like I said, that’s just me. I’m trying to look to improve in everything that I do and if you think I need to get better, then I’ll get better.”
(On what has impressed him about rookie running back Ronald Jones)
“Just his explosiveness and he’s starting to get it. It’s good to see when a young guy is starting to get it. It’s because they care. When guys are out there and make mistakes and are just laughing, you have to pull those guys to the side. But he cares and that’s very important to me.”
(On this rookie group’s ‘swagger’)
“Every rookie group has their own personality. In my opinion, I believe that my rookie class had a lot of swag to them. We came in and did very good, but we have to continue to improve. I think that we, as a team, do a great job of accepting those rookies and allowing them to be more comfortable around everybody and not holding them back and just letting them be themselves.”
(On how important this mini-camp is)
“It’s very important and every day is important, even though this is just walkthrough tempo. We try to relay that message to everybody. Coach [Todd] Monken says that everything matters. So definitely, with this [offseason] finishing up, obviously we want to finish strong and get ready for this run we’re about to make in this upcoming season.”

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