Here are a few tidbits from the transcripts of today's post-practice interviews.
Q. (Drew) Brees is a quarterback who gets rid of the ball quick, he’s hard to get to?
A. He has only been sacked four times this year, so yeah, he is hard to get to. Hopefully we can do some things to hopefully try to disguise him. No one has been too successful with that. Hopefully we can go out there and play our ‘A’ game. If we bring our ‘A’ game, we will have some success.
Q. Is this one of those cases where just getting pressure and hurrying is good?
A. We are still shooting for sacks. We are definitely still shooting for sacks. But it still is good. Drew (Brees) is a little shorter quarterback than average so we have to get up in his face and kind of block some of those passing lanes that he’s had. If we can do that and kind of move him off his target, then we can have some success, but obviously if he is able to sit back there and look down field for four or five seconds, then he is going to pick us apart.
A. The obvious thing is that he is so physical, so powerful. So it adds a physical element to an offense that not all offenses have. We all would like to have that component where you say, we can just line up against our opponent and be as physical as any defense we encounter. You’re not going to do it with your receivers. It really is going to come down to what your line and the style of runner that you have. He gives us that, he gives us that tone, that physicality, that toughness.
Q. Why is he so frustrated these days?
A. I just think his stats are not as high as the success he has experienced in the past. He wants to do more, which is good. Looking to do whatever he can do, he is looking to do it for the sake of the team. I think that is what he feels, he wants to be an effective runner because he knows our team needs that.
Q. Has he expressed his frustration to you individually?
A. We have talked about it. I told him, ‘to just keep playing. We aren’t disappointed at all. You’re a big part of what we do. You can express your contributions as a runner and also as a pass protector.’ (He’s) a guy that is chipping and neutralizing some superior rushers that we are facing. Not everybody has a guy who can do that, he can do that. We can match him up against a linebacker. We don’t have to make adjustments that a lot of teams have to do. He helps us in so many areas I don’t worry necessarily about the yardage per carry. I just look at the tone he is setting, not only with his running but also with everything he does.
Q: How about their balance? They have been pass heavy in the past. Drew Brees got all of those records. Now they seem to really have a pretty good running game. Talk about their balance and their ability to run the ball.
A: That is the most difficult thing when you play a team that can and does do both. And in my mind they have done a fantastic job of running the ball. Their production is excellent and like you said, their run/pass percentage is so balanced, especially on first and second down. And they are even willing to run the ball on third down. And they have converted on third down runs. You get a lot of teams that won’t even try to do that. But I think, and our guys have already recognized that, I think they are an outstanding rushing offense. They are very clever in the run game and very, very productive. They have a good offensive line and they have several tailbacks that can play. Everybody recognizesReggie Bush but their other tailbacks are excellent runners as well. So, yeah, they are a very legitimate rushing offense. And our players recognize that.
Q. Coach says you have nothing to be down about as far as performance. But, how do you feel?
A. It is what it is, like I said. I am carrying the ball and people see me, nothing else. So I can take the blame for that because a lot of people that don’t really know what is going on. When something happens, the wide receiver runs the route, there is a tipped ball, it’s on the QB because that is what people see. It is the same thing. I am going out there, I’m playing, I’m doing the best I can do for my team. I am not worried. It is going to come. As long as I finish where I finished the last couple of years, I am fine. It is going to come together.
Q. Does it make it easier for you to watch your running mate excelling?
A. Not really. He is a different style runner from what I am. A lot of the stuff suits him perfectly. If someone is running free, he is able to see him real quick, make him miss and do something. Me, I am 6’4, 265 pounds. I am supposed to run into people. I am supposed to take somebody on. That’s me. If I don’t do that, I am terrible. So it is what it is. Anymore questions about the New Orleans or the Giants success?
Q. Are you excited about going back home to play?
A. No question, this is my first time being able to go. We were supposed to go down my rookie year and the storm came. We had to make the midstream adjustment playing them here on a Monday night, which was fine. I am very excited for this opportunity. The Saints are 4-0, good football team, good offensive football team, good defensive football team. They are well coached and they have good players. It is going to be a war and that is something that I think our football is ready for. We’ve got to go down there and handle our business.
[NOTE: A reminder that several times each week I have post-practice or post-game interviews in the 'Transcripts' section of the site. So, remember to look there.]