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Marc Ross Press Conference, 04.28.12

Q: We want to know about the JPP of tight ends.

A: This guy, Adrien [Robinson], he’s a physical specimen. He’s tall. The guy’s 6’4", 6’5", almost 270 pounds, ran a 4.5. He’s just learning how to play football. We think he has tremendous upside and the kid plays hard for being a former basketball player. He plays hard. He just didn’t get a lot of chances. We think the sky’s the limit for him.

Q: When did he catch your eye?

A: Our area scout, Steve Devine, he did a great job going in there and digging him out. He lives in Columbus. That’s his area. So he’s at Cincinnati a lot. He dug him out, brought him to our attention. Our other area scouts did him – Ryan Jones and Chris Pettit – and then of course we started getting on him once we started hearing the enthusiasm about him in the meetings, our first set of meetings about the draft guys.

Q: What do you see in him that Cincinnati did not cultivate?

A: I’m sure they saw the talent, but they’re 4, 5 wide all of the time, shotgun, quick, get it out. So they don’t use the tight end a whole lot. I’m sure they knew what they had. Glowing reviews from the people there who deal with kid and coached him. They feel like they didn’t get the most out of him just because of the type of offense they had. Being here, the coaching, the way we’ll use him, I think he’ll just flourish.

Q: Is he going to take time?

A: Of course at this point in the draft and this kid’s background, it might take him a little more time, but he’s big and fast so just throw him out there on special teams and go run down the field. That doesn’t take much development to do that and he has the mindset and temperament to do that.

Q: When did he stop playing basketball?

A: Maybe his senior year in high school. He got recruited. He didn’t play at Cincinnati. But when you see him, he’s all long and gangly, but filled out in the lower good. He looks like a basketball player.

Q: Which a lot of these new-wave tight ends look like.

A: Right. Which, they were. It’s the new breed of tight end.

Q: A little different than what you guys usually go for?

A: Somewhat when you talk about Ballard and Pascoe, but Travis [Beckum] was a different kind of guy that we brought in here. We just look for talented players in different shapes. It doesn’t matter.

Q: What did you like about the two offensive linemen you drafted?

A: We think Mosley can do both [guard and tackle]. He’s just a gritty, hardnosed, tough player. The throwback kind of guy. High marks from all of our area scouts, just about his competitiveness and determination.

McCants, a little bit more of a developmental guy. 6’5". The guy’s got almost 36 [inch] arms. Good feet for a guy that big. We think he can play left tackle with that length. They’re quite different in their skill set. He’s a competitor, too, McCants, but Mosley is more of that blue collar guy and McCants is more of the athletic, developmental type.

Q: Is Mosley closer to being able to adjust to the NFL?

A: Yeah, I think so. He played at Auburn, started at Auburn – a high level of competition. So I think he can step in right away and not be phased, step in tomorrow. He’s going to be the same guy he was two years ago as he is five years from now, just that gritty hardnosed guy.

Q: Markus Kuhn is 25?

A: He’ll be 26 in training camp.

Q: But he’s still learning the game?

A: Yeah, he’s really still learning the game. The first football game he saw was one he played in, over in the states. He didn’t know much about college football or anything.

Q: Is he really strong?

A: Yeah, he’s strong. He’s big and strong. Tough guy, that you need on the team. Ran 4.9 at the combine. He’s fast, a straight-line fast guy so we think he can run down on kickoffs. Again, when we get this late in the draft we look for special things that guys can do and he’s big and strong and can run fast and he plays hard. So those are the qualities we liked in him.

Q: Tom said that he was rated a little higher than what you drafted him.

A: Yeah, we talked about him for the last few rounds, actually. So he was in the discussion from Adrien on. So with all three of those discussions and finally it was like, we kept passing him over, passing him over. And we are glad he was still there.

Q: Would he be the kind of guy who in training camp you will have to watch because he could – sometimes guys with his profile - he could make something happen in training camp – have a little fight; have a little skirmish?

A: Yeah, he has that in him. I think he might mix it up some. But when you get hard-nosed guys going up against each other all of the time, that stuff occurs. But nothing to where it is out of the ordinary – where he is dirty or anything. He just plays hard. It is the only way he knows how.

Q: How would you sum up this draft for you guys?

A: Obviously every year I come out feeling good about it because I think we do a thorough job. Our scouts do a thorough job, coaches, together. So I come out of it feeling good and we talk about it a lot and make decisions that we feel are best for the team. So we are just not grabbing guys off the board. It is thorough discussions about every guy we take. So we feel good.

Q: It seems like you got a lot of players later than you projected – like Rueben Randle – you were talking about in the first …… Is that a fair assessment for most of those guys?

A: Probably Rueben and Kuhn. The other guys were probably right in the range we thought. Hosley - I expected that to happen just because some of the off the field circumstances. And I kind of compare that to the (Mario) Manningham situation. But pretty much everybody else fell in line to what we thought.

Q: He pretty much fell just about as Mario did.

A: Yeah. I brought that up in the draft room. It was like, ‘This is Mario all over – first-round talent and we took him at the last pick of that third round.’ We sent everybody home with Mario – we sent people home with Hosley this time. But we think he is a good kid. He just made a mistake. Kind of like Mario, we didn’t think he was a bad person, made a mistake or two. And Jayron – we have complete confidence in him.

Q: Did you have him as a first-round talent?

A: Yeah, right on the boarder line cusp there. His size might have pushed him down but the talent itself was definitely – he was right there in the mix with some of those guys.

Q: Is he too small to play safety?

A: Yeah, yeah.

Re: Jayron Hosley

A: He is tough. He doesn’t know that he is that little. He thinks he is 6-2, 225 the way he flies up and hits people and throws his body around. He might get run over some, but he keeps coming; but, no, definitely not a safety.

Q: Do you guys worry about concussions at all? How did that conversation go?

A: With Jayron – no, no. He was fine. He checked out fine medically.

Q: Anything on undrafted free agents?

A: Yeah, that is what I was up there doing. Sorry to keep you guys waiting. But that was what we were doing. We were scrambling getting guys. We signed a nice group of players we think. That is the time, again, our area scouts shine with guys they have been following all year and pushing for and cultivating relationships with. So we think we have a nice group of guys.

Q: Did you get 10?

A: Yeah.

Q: Joe Martinek, Rutgers? What did you see in him?

A: We had him at the local day, obviously. We have been at tons of Rutgers games. He is just a gritty, hard-nosed football player. He has played fullback; he has played running back – done whatever they ask. He worked out really well. He can really catch the ball; a guy that you can throw in at any position there in the backfield and he will not miss a beat.

Q: Did you sign 10?

A: Yeah, it is done. We are done. So follow the tweets.