Q: Do you have a favorite group yet?
A: Nope. It's going to depend on situations. I think that as this thing progresses it looks like that's the way it's going to keep progressing. It depends on who we're playing and what they're trying to do how we go about it.
Q: Is it a problem for you? Have you mixed guys like this in the past?
A: I've mixed guys in the past before. It comes from the personnel you have and how they can learn and progress in each package.
Q: Are you drafting for a particular type?
A: This is my first year, but I like the way they've been drafted. This group – we've got some guys who are proven pass rushers and we've got some young guys who can be pass rushers so if they can continue to progress then I think we've got a pretty healthy situation here.
Q: How do you teach them to defend against the rush?
A: You work it with reps. When we get in individual drills, you say, 'hey, if this happens, this is how you're going to play it.' Hopefully we can zero in on teams – kind of knowing what they're doing when they get in different situations. If we can, then we can use those packages and match them up. We certainly don't want to put someone down in the three technique when they're getting double teams if they're not used to doing that so we've got to have a feel for what they're trying to do to us and what the situation is.
Q: Why is Mathias Kiwanuka the candidate to work at linebacker as opposed to someone else?
A: He's done that some in his past and he's more comfortable with it – the dropping and covering – and he does a good job of taking the game plan and learning it and studying it and being on top of that.
Q: We're asking about this but is this something that we might see once a game or is this a big deal?
A: You'd have to ask Coach Fewell that question but I think it's going to depend on how the situation unfolds in each game and at least we've got it in our hip pocket and we've worked it and we've repped it and when we get into a game, we want the best people on the field obviously. Like all 32 teams do, we want to give us the best chance to win and if we think that that package can help us, then we will go for that.
Q: As a line coach, what is fun about working with Coach Fewell?
A: He lets you coach. He lets you be creative when working with your guys. I've known guys who have worked with him when he's been a coordinator and every one of them has said the same thing and I can see it being with him so far. He lets you coach.
Q: Does he ever throw something at you that makes you ask "what are you thinking?"
A: No. Not so far. He's very creative and has a lot of energy as you can see out there and he's a lot of fun to work with. The guys are enjoying it and we just take it one day at a time.
Q: How do you envision someone like Chris Canty? Could he potentially be used in a few different roles?
A: I see him being someone who we can move around a little bit. If we get a team that is just pounding the ball at us, we could put him out at the end. We can move him anywhere across there. I see Chris being able to play anywhere across the front.
Q: Does his ability to play end help you move Kiwanuka around?
A: I think that all of them being able to move – when we get into different rush situations – to be able to move Justin Tuck and Dave Tollefson inside – I think that helps to be able to move guys like Mathias Kiwanuka and Osi Umenyiora and even as things progress, hopefully Jason Pierre-Paul. I mean, I don't want to overload the kid, he's coming in here and has done a great job and is in a great position right now and I just don't want to overload him but I see him being able to do some of that, too. Anytime you can do that and move them around, it makes those guys earn their money on the other side.
Q: A former player like Michael Strahan was able to use great leverage, maintain his lane, and do some serious damage on the defensive line. What makes players like him so rare?
A: There have always been a few players who do that but not very many of them. Michael was a lot of fun to watch and there are just not a lot of guys who could do all the things that he could do. The guy was outstanding with leverage and technique and he was a high-motor guy. Just not a lot of guys come along very often. Hopefully we can have somebody in this group develop into something like that.
Q: Is he your ideal type of defensive end for a system like this?
A: Yeah. No question. He's ideal in any system. You couldn't move him out of there when they were trying to pound the ball and the moment you drop back to pass… He was as good as I've ever seen at triggering off to play action pass. Playing the run and then triggering the pass. That's the hardest thing to do as far as a defensive lineman is to defend the run and be able to trigger quickly enough to get pressure on the quarterback and I remember at Miami and Green Bay when we'd watch tape of the Giants, the most impressive thing I think I watched him do was play over a tight end playing the run, the pass shows, trigger, and get pressure on the quarterback. That's a very hard thing to do – to get pressure on him when people run play action passes.
Q: Is that an instinct that you try to teach?
A: Yeah, you try to teach that but a lot of it comes from just instincts and he was very instinctual. Plus, I think he studied the game. I think he studied it and knew when play action pass was coming and he did a great job.