GM JERRY REESE
Ok guys. Linval Joseph. Defensive Tackle, East Carolina. Gigantic Man. That's where I can start with him. He's a big human being. He's powerful inside and a run stuffer. Push the pocket back toward the quarterback. Strong kid with a lot of upside for him as well. I'll take any questions.
Q: You saying something about the defense with the first two picks?
A: We want to get better with our defense. We had a lot of points scored on us last fall. We are trying to upgrade our defense. We are trying to upgrade the entire football team, but we feel good about these past two picks, our first and second round picks.
Q: Do you see him as a nose tackle or will he play somewhere else on the line?
A: Yeah, he's versatile. He can play the nose, he can play a three, he can play a three technique, he can play anywhere inside.
Q: There were questions about his pass rushing skills and some injury concerns…what are his strengths?
A: His strength is that he is a big man. He is a powerful force on a pass play. He doesn't get pushed back an awful lot from the line of scrimmage and he holds his ground. He cleans up the lanes for the linebackers. I wouldn't call him a pass rusher but he is disruptive. He can push the pocket and push the offensive linemen back in the quarterback's lap. As far as his health concerns, we have no problem with his health concerns. We developed that stuff and don't see anything as far as his health is concerned.
Q: After last year and the defensive line was brought down with injuries, are you more comfortable with the numbers and depth you have now?
A: Well, good. It is a good problem for us to have. We like to create competition at every position so we should see some good competition on our defensive line. Again, you've got to have some big people in this league. We play a lot of teams that have big offensive linemen like Dallas and Philadelphia and the Redskins. They have big offensive linemen and you have to match those guys.
Q: Is this a need pick as opposed to a value board pick?
A: No, it's a value and a need pick. You know, he was in a good spot for us and we see a lot of value in this pick as well. We got a little bit of both from this guy.
Q: Did the round transpire as you expected?
A: I think you start to see a lot of guys pick a lot of need. We have our charts of who we think needs what. So, we kind of match up pretty good moving forward. We look at people and see what their need is. Sometimes they panic a little bit about what their need is and teams reach for a guy. So, a couple guys came off a little differently than we had exactly on our boards. It is really not a need.
Q: Did the separation of a night keep the second round cooler or calmer?
A: No, I don't think there is a big difference between starting at noon and starting at six. I don't think there is anything different.
Q: With teams panicking, did you guys have a lot of discussion and find a need for middle linebacker?
A: We are looking for good players. If we can find a good linebacker, we will draft him. But, we feel good about the players that we drafted. A defensive end and a defensive tackle. Two really good football players.
Q: Did you discuss linebackers specifically? Were they in the conversation as well?
A: There were several positions we talked about, yeah.
Q: Is Jay Alford doing well in his recovery?
A: He is going to 100%. We're looking forward for Jay to get back. Jay is one of those guys who can pass rush from the inside. He has that motor and quickness that you have to have when you play inside. He is working hard and we expect him to be 100%.
Q: He's not slow in his recovery at all?
A: Not at all.
Q: Is this guy more of a Barry Cofield type player?
A: Well, this guy is a big anchor. He is a load inside and it's hard to push this man back. He is kind of like one of those guys who is a presence and is like a human post. He'll give the linebackers a chance to run to the ball and he will block the inside.
Q: What do your picks say about the defense?
A: It says we picked two good football players and we are adding some depth to our defensive line. There will be a lot of competition at the defensive front. You can never have enough good people inside. So, we have some depth right now, which can go quickly with a 16 game season. For right now, it looks pretty good.
Q: Does it say that the linebacker performance is predicated by the guys who are playing up front?
A: Well, that has a lot to do with it. If you have some big, good space eaters and block eaters up front, the linebackers can make a lot more plays. It sure helps if you have some guys who can pick up a lot more blocks. The linemen who help the linebackers can cut off the forward movement of the ball so you hope it helps. * * Q: One of the scouting services had Joseph as a late riser…
A: I don't think he was a late riser. Some people had him in the bottom of the first round. I don't consider him a late riser. He is a junior and I think he has a huge upside for a young kid. The sky is the limit for him.
Q: With Canty playing over the nose, do you think Joseph comes in here and gives you more flexibility?
A: I think this guy is more of a nose. Chris can play inside and outside and he can play the three. We like linemen who give us a lot of flexibility. We picked two guys who can give us a lot of flexibility.
Q: I meant if he comes in and plays over the nose, does that give you more flexibility with Canty?
A: Yeah. I think Chris can play out in the three more. This kid is an anchor. They probably won't try and let a three penetrate.
Q: Was he the highest rated player at the time of your pick? Does that carry forward? What if in the third round a defensive linemen is the highest player?
A: Well, if it is another defensive linemen, then we would consider it. You can't play with 20 defensive linemen. We are cognizant of how many defensive linemen we do have. We are not over the limit yet.
Q: Then you go to need?
A: Well we go to good players. Again, we never try to get just need picks. We try and get a combination of both. I say this all the time, we stress that and try to do that. Sometimes we can and sometimes we can't. Again, you can't have 20 defensive linemen. Unless you have them go both ways, like you used to, Dave.
Q: So at what point do you have to consider need over value?
A: Yeah, I mean, need and value. It's a combination of both thoughts. We continue to look for good football players, and that's what is most important. We look for good football players. We are cognizant of what people consider our needs and what we consider to be our needs. Most importantly, is good football players.
Q: Do you agree that linebacker is an obvious need?
A: We are trying to create depth everywhere. Everywhere. All over the defense, all over the offense. Right now, we only have two picks and we picked two defensive linemen.
Q: Without identifying them, do you have obvious needs?
A: We have needs to get football players. Thanks guys.
Jerry (Reese) was just here and spoke to you about Linval Joseph. I will just tell you this, for another youngster, three-year player, he was 319 at his pro day, he ran 4.97, vertical jump 31.5 inches, he had a 20-yard shuttle that was very, very good under 4.7. He is an athletic young player, very strong – 39 reps on the bench. Stays down, very quick, you see a lot of athleticism and quickness in his play. You see more in terms of the tackles and the assists. He does have the ability to walk the offensive guard back. He doesn't have a lot of production in the sack game. He does have thrown for losses, tackles for loss, pressures on the quarterback. A big, strong defensive tackle that can play on the center or as a three-technique, and a young guy, again, that we can work with.
Q: Is that why he is so impressive, he looks like he has a knack to get beyond the line of scrimmage.
A: I think he has outstanding quickness and power, obviously. When he stays down, keeps his pads down, he is very difficult to keep from penetrating. He is a penetrator.
Q: He is a nose?
A: No, he can be either way. When you watch him play on collegiate film you will see that he has played on the guard a lot.
Q: The last guy that was that big and could move that fast that you had here was Fred Robbins last year. Does he remind you at of him?
A: I think Fred is probably a little taller than Linval is, but the same kind of initial quickness – yeah.
Q: When you had Fred doing that kind of stuff for you, what did it do for your defense – when he was really healthy, before that knee thing and was able to get that quick push?
A: What we were able to do was to penetrate and of course to keep people off the linebacker level. No one was being pushed back into the linebacker depth. That is what has to be re-established again – keep some people clean so they can go to the ballcarrier.
Q: Speaking of linebacker, do you think you need to address that position quickly?
A: Well, we will see. It would be great if need and the valuation were at the same level – high. And we have a few more picks to make so we will see.
Q: Your first two picks haven't come from big conferences. Any concern?
A: That is all taken into consideration when you put the grade on the player. I think there is some level of comp or number of years of service, however you want to say it, that may have been responsible for a tick or two being held back. But it still allowed the player to have an outstanding grade.
Q: Are you not surprised your first two picks were defensive players.
A: Am I surprised? Of course not.
Q: You are not surprised? This kind of makes sense?
A: I'm a part of the (process) ---- thank you.
Q: Did you speak with Skip Holtz about Linval?
* *A: Yes. We were at South Florida when Skip had taken that job.
Q: Can you share anything that he said?
* *A: About what I have just said – a real quality kid, first one in the weight room, shuts the lights out, hard worker.
Q: Since you have been here, has the Giants' philosophy been to look at Combine numbers as one of the more important evaluations?
A: It has always been – it is a part of it. It has always been a part of the total picture. By itself? No, of course not. They always have to go on the field and play. But all of the factors – the interviews, the Combine, the Combine numbers, the speed, the height, weight speed, the medical – they are all put together to give you a final grade on the player.
Q: Did you have this guy in for a visit?
A: No. We were at his workout, sure. He had a very good workout, by the way. He had lost some weight and I think he was 328 at the Combine and probably 319 at his workout.
Q: Where would you like him to be?
A: Big, strong and as powerful as he can be. Whatever the weight is where he runs the fastest and is the strongest.
Q: How are you liking your defensive line now?
A: We are coming; we are coming. Get some of these guys that are here healthy and competitive again; that is a good thing.
Q: Does this kid have the explosion to split doubles?
A: (East Carolina) had a pretty good defensive front now. They did, they had some nice looking… But he has that ability, yes. As I said, if his pads stay down, it is very difficult to move him because of his strength. If he gets up a little bit --- we all have issues.