Head Coach Brian Daboll
Daboll: How's everybody doing? Proud of the way the guys competed for 60 minutes again. Got a couple of guys dinged up. We'll get those tests evaluated tonight and tomorrow, so I don't have an update relative to those two players. But again, I like the way those guys competed. Thought the quarterbacks played well, had good rhythm in the game, knew where to go with the football, completed a lot of passes. Got off to a slow start scoring. Defense we did a great job in short fields in the first half. Then the second half, got out there and got that penalty. Hit the guy at quarterback in the helmet. They went down and scored. But again, lot to work on. Lot to clean up. But proud of the way the guys competed.
Q: How do you feel about game management? I know you don't do a lot in preseason. But two particular situations. They had a third-and-16, a holding would have made it a third-and-26, but you declined it. And the other one was you had to call a timeout with on your two-point conversion.
A: Yeah. Three of the guys on the (kicking) team ran out. I think they saw me get excited, so we called a timeout there. And then the other one was a 50-yard field goal. Probably should have took them back, to be honest with you.
Q: (Outside Linebacker) Kayvon (Thibodeaux) seemed like he was in pretty good spirits leaving. Is it positive with him?
A: Yeah. I mean, we'll see. He'll get the tests, and we'll have more for you tomorrow.
Q: How big a scare was it to see him go down like that?
A: I think it's a scare any time. These players work as hard as they can possibly work to try to do as well as they can, and anytime you see someone on the turf regardless of how they got here, it's always, it's hard as a coach to watch a guy go down.
Q: Where do you stand on guys going low in that situation?
A: We'll that's the rules. If they allow it… we do it as well with tight ends and full backs going back to the line of scrimmage. So, got to do a good job of playing it. It's a tough block. But whatever the rules are, those are the rules.
Q: You had said the other day that you might revisit the idea of (Quarterback) Daniel (Jones) playing tonight at all. What made you decide to go ahead and put him out there?
A: We revisited everybody. I just thought he could use it. Our offense could use it with him out there. He played really well. Was in good command. Played well.
Q: You know how much the players put in to try to make the team and everything. What would you say for (Wide Receiver) Alex Bachman to have the game that he had tonight?
A: All this guy's done is the right thing since he's been here. He's showed up in the spring and worked as hard as he possibly could and got better each day. He's one of the first guys in the weight room each day. He was down, down on the depth chart, rep chart if you will, and all he does is compete and play hard. And I appreciate guys like that. I think his teammates do, too. It was good to see him have some success out there. He'll get more chances.
Q: You obviously don't have a track record game management-wise. So, it was like fourth-and-1 at your own 41 in the first half, and you went for it. Is that a preview of how aggressive you might be? Or you just wanted to give the offense an opportunity to advance?
A: We talk about that each week. I'd say we have pretty extensive meetings on that with our analytics department. I think each game, there's a set area where we'd decide that we'd go for it, and a couple of guys give me a heads up, 'Hey these are the, we'll start to go for it if we get to this.' I think there's a lot of things that go into play. I don't think you can just look at a number and do it. But I do think that that'll be an important part of some of our decision-making process, and tonight we kind of went with the numbers, if you will. Now, there's a lot of things: weather, how the other quarterback's playing, how the other team's playing. There's so many different situations that come up. But I certainly use those.
Q: You kind of talked about gut versus numbers. Is it something where gut is kind of the breaking point if it's even? How do you decide when you go with what?
A: It's not really like gut. I think it's a calculated decision. There's numbers and then there's also opponent. There's factors that go into it. There's weather, how the other team's playing, how you're playing at the same time. I'm a big believer in analytics, I am. We used it a lot in Buffalo, and we'll use it here.
Q: Is that as well as you've seen (Quarterback) Davis (Webb) play?
A: In a game? He was in pretty good command. You know, he's been in this offense for, again he hasn't been it for six months. He's been in it for years. So, again, who we're playing, when we're playing them, he has full command of what we're doing. He understands. Look, give credit to these front guys that played. I mean (Tackle) Roy's (Mbaeteka) basically been playing football for a few weeks like with pads on, in his entire life. (Offensive Lineman) Chris Owens just came off the airplane to play pretty much a whole half. (Tackle Will Holden) Holden's playing center for us. So, give (Offensive Line Coach) Bobby Johnson and (Assistant Offensive Line Coach) Tony Sparano – those guys have worked the last two days to get those guys ready. They played an entire half and then allowed Davis to play. But Davis has firm grasp of what we run, how we run it. We know what he likes. There's time invested. Right, three years' time invested with a player. That goes a long way.
Q: What have you liked best about what Daniel did? And on the interception, looks like it was a pass that probably could have been caught.
A: No, we need to catch it.
Q: Why do you think Daniel got in such a good rhythm on that touchdown drive?
A: I think he's been in pretty good rhythm when he's playing games. I know practice is tough, and there's a lot of things coming at him. But he's picking up our offense. Look, he's only a few months into it. But he's done a good job of really, tireless worker. Even when we're on, we'll be on the phone. He's up there every morning with (Offensive Coordinator Mike) Kafka. We're trying to formulate what we're good at right now, which doesn't come easy. It's a continual process of throwing out plays, putting players in different positions, reading body language – 'Do I like throwing to this receiver on this route?', the protections, we see them every day, a lot of those that go along with it. But he's made steady strides. He played well. He was in good command.
Q: How much do you adjust your offense for Daniel compared to I assume you can change depending on who's under center?
A: We're still working on that now. Again, it's training camp. The season's coming soon. But there's constant communication. That's important for Mika Kafka, who's been calling the plays, and Daniel. And I have constant communication with Daniel like, 'Hey,' He's like, 'I kind of really like these four plays. We haven't run them much.' If you like those plays, we're going to put them in. Those are comfortable plays for you, we'll put them in. It's not a big deal. He's like, 'Okay.' We're still building that process, that relationship. And I love the kid, of figuring out exactly what we're going to try to be. And that's – in an early part of installing an offense or a defense or whatever it may be – I won't go back four years ago, but the plays four years ago we were running way different than the plays we we're running four years from now. It's a continual evolvement of time, effort, timing, discussions, protections, routes, all these different things, personnel groupings that go into it. And it takes time.
Q: When Daniel does step up and say like, 'Hey, I like these four plays,' is that a turning point?
A: I wouldn't say it's a turning point. He isn't like shy to say it; I told him if he doesn't feel comfortable with something – and it's the same thing like what you may run with one quarterback you might have some different things for the next quarterback. They're not all the same. I'm not saying you have two call sheets, but you definitely have long discussions with your quarterbacks because they touch the ball on every play.
Q: When you get in that rhythm with Daniel and the first unit, how much do you look at the line first and realize that it's now two games that your offensive line looks like it's really starting to gel out there. I know there are probably things to build on when you start breaking down the film.
A: Again, I think they're making progress every day. This was (Devery) Hamilton at guard now and (Max) Garcia (at center). And we felt comfortable with Garcia. At Florida, he had some. He played a few games in league, and I kept asking him, 'Are you sure you're good?' And he said, 'Yeah. I don't know what the big deal.' You know, lineman mentality. But that's a testament to their coaches that deal with them every day and the players to be flexible. So, some good reps out there; and certainly, a lot to work on.
Q: In the running game it looked like the design, especially down at the goal line, the line was really working well together versus just kind of out there as a unit you put together.
A: I told Mike, 'Let's not have many runs in the second half. Let's not come up with all these designs' – him and Bobby. 'Let's have a couple of runs and that's it. So, these guys know the combination blocks or the down blocks, whatever we got to call so that we're all on the same page based on the players coming in when they've come in and the positions that they played.' Give those guys a lot of credit for Chris and (Tackle Will) Holden and big Roy. It's good to see.
Q: With Kayvon, do you feel like already you've ruled out something severe? I know there's more tests coming.
A: I can't answer that yet. I think they'll do the tests tonight, MRIs and stuff like that, and get a better feel for it in the morning. You hope not, but don't know the answer to that yet.
Q: You played all your starters – the healthy ones – except for (Running Back) Saquon (Barkley), I think he's healthy. What went into that decision for you to hold him back and put everyone else out there?
A: I just thought it was probably best for the team. He's had a really good camp. Gave him the night off, basically. I have a lot of confidence. He's taken a lot of reps. He's had some physical practices, so I wanted to see both (Running Back) Antonio (Williams) and (Running Back Jashaun) Corbin tonight running behind our first line, so to speak. So, the amount of plays if he would have went in there was only going to be a few anyways, so I made a decision to just hold him.
Quarterback Daniel Jones
Q: What can you say about (Wide Receiver) David Sills' development in this system? Obviously, he's been good in training camp and preseason the last two years. What have you seen out of him in practice?
A: I think he's just a guy who shows up every day, comes to work. I think he just makes a ton of plays and it's hard to ignore how many plays he's made during the spring, during training camp and obviously tonight as well. He's a tremendously hard worker and a really good player. A talented player and someone you can count on to get open.
Q: What do you say to your rookie tight end (Daniel Bellinger) after that play?
A: I think it's just getting on the same page with some of that stuff. I can probably do a better job getting the ball down and I know he'll make that play and we'll get it. He's had a good camp and he's going to be a good player.
Q: How would you feel if you didn't end up playing in the last preseason game and this was what you had to go into the season with?
A: I don't know. Those decisions are well over my head. Like I said, I thought we did a lot of good things and stuff we can build off of. We've got an important few weeks of work here coming up. Obviously with this week most immediately. That's what we're focused on and a lot we got to still do.
Q: Did you expect to play this much tonight? (Head Coach Brian) Daboll was saying on Friday he was kind of revisiting whether he would play certain guys. Did you have to make any kind of push like that?
A: No, that was coach's call and my job is to show up and play.
Q: Has what you've seen so far make you feel like you guys are at least headed in the right direction as an offense as a whole?
A: I felt that way throughout camp. It's a process and we're constantly learning and improving day to day. I felt like we've had a good camp and we've done that through the first few weeks. We got to keep doing that. I think that's what is most important is what we do from this point on and how much we can still improve. That's what we're focused on.
Q: You were on the sideline obviously, but when the crowd gets quiet and then the cart comes out for (Outside Linebacker) Kayvon Thibodaux, what is the sideline like at that point? What are you thinking?
A: I think it was a pretty scary moment there. You never want to see anyone go down. We'll see and it was a tough play. You kind of saw the block and the collision there. I hope he's alright, I think he's doing better.
Q: Did you see that block? What do you think of it?
A: I did, yeah. Well, I think that's legal – it's in the tackle box. It's part of it. It's tough, it's a tough part of the game and I don't have much experience dealing with that – I don't play d-end. But yeah, part of it.
Q: You and (Wide Receiver David) Sills have such a chemistry and rapport. When it comes to building chemistry with a receiver, can anything replace just time spent working with a receiver?
A: Yeah, I think everybody is different. There's nothing more valuable than reps. Getting together, going through it in practice, seeing things, having the conversations, correcting things and moving forward. There's a process to it and you got to put the time in, put the effort in and go through it. He's definitely done that, but we got to do that with everyone as a group.
Q: Did you feel like a thrill of playing in this game knowing that the Bengals went to the Super Bowl last year? More so than the other games?
A: Yeah, they're a good team. A lot of their starters weren't playing tonight but they're a good team and it's always fun to get out at home and play a game at home. It was fun being out there.
Quarterback Davis Webb
Q: Is this the benefit of being in the system for so long? Just being able to step in there and understating where you are supposed to go with the ball, what the players are, and all that type of stuff?
A: It's a group effort. The guys won one-on-one on the outside and had good spacing in zone (coverage), the o-line protected very, very well. No sacks, I mean that's pretty nice.
Q: You talked about all the guys that made plays, you had a nice little run yourself there.
A: Yeah, could have thrown it to (Running Back) Antonio (Williams). He did a good job on that one. It was a good two-point call and (Offensive Coordinator Mike Kafka) Kaf did a really good job getting in and out of the huddle and getting us good plays. Everybody on the field executed pretty well.
Q: What is it like when you get (Tackle) Will (Holden) playing center and what do you say to him to help him stay calm?
A: I think Will is a vet. He's played all the positions on the line except center, his first time was tonight, and he can cross it off the list. He adds value there, he's a smart guy, he's a great communicator and I think he did outstanding.
Q: Did you think did think you would ever have to catch a screwball from a center?
A: He got it back there. He did a good job up front making plays and blocking the guy in front of him. That's all you want him to do.
Q: Did you get to see (Wide Receiver Alex Bachman) hit the griddy?
A: I did. I saw it live. He did it in here after the postgame celebrations. He's got some moves on him, you got to go talk to him about it.
Q: Is there anything you can take into next week's game?
A: Not sure yet. Just kind of enjoy it tonight then wake up and correct some things and build on the performance from (Wide Receiver) Marcus (Kemp) and (Wide Receiver) Keelan (Doss) and Bachman up front. That was the first time that group ever played together. Hopefully, they feel more comfortable next week.
Q: What are some of those things you want to work on?
A: I still think we can hit one down the field maybe. I think I missed a couple down the field. They got separation, I just got to hit them
Long Snapper Casey Kreiter
Q: Were you surprised you went for two in that situation. Did you think you had earned their trust?
A: I had to buy that timeout. I got a little overzealous running onto the field when I probably shouldn't have. So, I'm happy we got out with the win and it didn't come down to a timeout that I would have to buy. You never want that to happen.
Q: Were you the one that saw (Giants Head Coach Brian Daboll) "Dabs" get all excited and think you'd decide to go out and kick?
A: I was just kind of in the moment and I ran out there a little too early, so I'll buy the timeout. But we talk a lot in our room, especially with us specialists, about whatever the team calls on us to do we're ready to do. So, if it's our jobs to stand on the sideline while they go for two, that's what we'll do. If it's kick a 57-yard field goal, that's what we'll do, too, and (sticking to work) with your job, especially as a specialist.
Q: Did you know you'd be called on to give lessons in holding?
A: (Laughs) you know, I didn't. I love kicking, I love punting, I love doing all of that stuff, so part of the competitor in me was a little disappointed Jamie (Gillan)got to kick off and not me.
Q: Could you have gotten a touchback?
A: He went into the net just in case we needed to. No, I'llbe honest I think Jamie (Gillan) definitely has the upper hand in that department, but we have our little friendly competitions every week on whether it's kickoffs, punts, doing whatever, so I think it's kind of an iron sharpens iron thing.
Q: (Giants Safety) Julian (Love) steps in and you're going to teach him how to fly the plane, right? How to land the plane?
A: Yeah, he's such a good athlete, right? It was pretty simple, it was more just kind of show him what it looks like, snap him a couple balls on the sideline, give him the confidence I'm going to get you the ball that's easy to catch, put it down this way and Jamie's—he's a good athlete, too, he's a ball striker. We don't try to oversimplify things in our room. It's see ball, kick ball; grab ball, snap ball.
Q: It's almost helpful I would think that he's a left footed kicker because then he doesn't have to turn things around, right?
A: Yeah, I take a lot of pride in the laces. I think on the PAT the laces weren't out where they should have been, so I'm going to have to get with him next week and really work on that because that is something I really take pride in.
Wide Receiver Alex Bachman
Q: Unable to capture question
A: I've been on scout team kickoff for three years now. Like I said, I kept my mouth shut and my head down and just try to give a good look for our kick return team. But also tried to improve my craft as well. Fortunately, those looks, and that hard work paid off for me tonight. I really wanted to go down, I actually get frustrated every time I don't make the tackle. I always want to be the guy, I'm the five, the penetrator, I'm supposed to cause havoc in the return game so luckily, I was able to do that tonight and I was fired up about it.
Q: Is there something about this offense where it looked like some of the routes that you guys had, instead of being the safety valve for the back, it was like you guys were in the middle of the field? You had a number of catches like that, it was almost like (Quarterback) Davis (Webb) knew if he had to go somewhere he went to you in that spot. Does that kind of feed into your skill set a little bit in this offense, the idea that you're not just running down the field?
A: Yeah, it just comes from I happen to share the same agent as (Free Agent Wide Receiver) Cole Beasley, Cole lives in Austin, Texas with me. He and (Retired Wide Receiver) Danny Amendola, I've picked their brain; I've picked the slots brain. I have a high football IQ, I can read 'zone' and 'man', and things like that. Like I said, we were on the same page, been on the same page, built that in practice and so we really made it work tonight and glad we did.
Q: Did you talk to Beasley specifically about this offense?
A: Yes, exactly. I picked his brain, there were a couple times where (Head Coach Brain Daboll) Dabs facetimed in and we were just talking. But, I just picked his brain around different things and what he's looking for and how to run one route 10 different ways because sometimes you're going to run and the same plays are going to be called, and you've got to make it look different for the defense. So, I've been learning more about how route running can turn into a chess game really, I can give one look and set it up for the next one. So specifically, obviously those two touchdowns tonight, I kind of knew we were going to score on them or be successful at least because of a previous play that already happened. I'm like "alright this is perfect; I've already set them up for this play to work". I'm just thankful and appreciate the opportunity to go out there and play football.
Q: Impressive game tonight congratulations. How long did it take you to decide to do the "Griddy" dance?
A: I actually hit it during OTA's, and my teammates liked it. I did Hip-Hop in high school, so I do love to dance and love music. I had an opportunity to do some commercials and stuff when I was little, but football was always my first passion. But you know I still miss dancing, so anytime I can get in the endzone and have a little fun, I take advantage of it.