Running backs coach Jerald Ingram, 08.02.09

Q: What do you expect from Ahmad Bradshaw?

Ingram: I think as you saw last year, anytime he had a chance to get out there and have an opportunity to perform, I think he’s excited about that, he’s going to give us a good change of pace. He’s going to be strong, he’ll be powerful, he accepts all challenges, he’s not afraid of any situation out there. I think he’s going to be tough, I think he’s going to be physical, I think he’s going to be a good change of pace guy for us. I think he does show he can catch the ball out of the backfield and help us in that way. But I think the most important thing that you’re going to see is that change of speed when you have a guy like Brandon and even though Brandon has exceptional speed for a guy his size, but he kind of sets a tone for how we are physically and really what we are. He identifies what we’re about. For Ahmad’s size, he does play bigger than he is. He’s a guy that in the last two years does not go down with the first hit. You know he does have that ‘make them miss’ ability and he does have that ability to break tackles as well. I think he’s pretty excited about his opportunity with the program this year.

Q: What’s the biggest thing in terms of his transition, with Derrick gone?

Ingram: Well, in Derrick you had a guy who was 225-230 pounds who could protect the quarterback against these 250-pound linebackers. So, obviously the defense will handle Ahmad differently then they did Derrick. See when you have Brandon and Derrick in the backfield and then you’re going from having a power run and then being able to throw the ball out of the backfield and still be able to protect those kinds of linebackers, there isn’t a lot of drop-off. So you didn’t have to change what you were doing. Well, we may have to change a little bit about what we’re doing with Ahmad at times, but sometimes he’s still going to have to stand up and get his job done. But there are going to be some other things that we could do with Ahmad that we probably weren’t able to do with Derrick. We’re pretty excited about that.

Q: Coach, what are some of the things that go into the person getting the third running back job?

Ingram:  Yeah, in this day of age in the NFL, it’s hard to play with one guy through the whole season. You’re blessed nowadays the way these guys are built and how they train and so forth. Because of our run style, we’re very physical and you know you don’t have that finesse guy that just beats somebody, can take a hit and fall down, there going to get beat up. So when you have a 1-2 punch and a 1-2-3 punch, just like we tried to have last year. In the fourth quarter to have that guy who comes off the bench and excites everybody, is that sparkplug for the offense as well the defense, that’s exciting. We’re not going to get away from that.  Now, hopefully Danny Ware is that kind of guy, a guy who can come out of the backfield, he has that size, he’s kind of like Derrick Ward model wise. The thing that Danny has to have is play experience. He hasn’t had the opportunity to have play experience. Now the time he has been on the field, he’s been pretty productive. He’s excited people to say, ‘hey, this guy’s got some tools, got some talent, got some size,’ and hadn’t had the opportunity to play an awful lot. Now, here’s his chance to be that third guy, or second guy. Who’s to say he’s not the second guy when it’s all said and done. That’s what happens when you have great depth. We’ve got great passion, we’ve got great attitude. Brandon sets the tone for how we are as a group and everybody else kind of falls in. You try and create a tradition, as far as who we are, what we do and have everybody follow on the team as well. The ball is in our hands, we can control everyone on the team and those are the kind of things we want to do here in New York. I think that will happen this year.

Q: You think you need Ware to step up to keep Brandon from wearing down?

Ingram: I think we need whoever, we try to coach here from a standpoint of whoever has that opportunity to step up, you’re the next man. The next man is the most important man on this team. Because, sooner or later, we’re going to need you. Just like when we came down the road during the Super Bowl and we needed Ahmad Bradshaw and Derrick Ward.

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