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Offensive Coordinator Kevin Gilbride Interview



Re: Men's Fitness just posted on their site that Jacobs said it was confusing that he and Ahmad don't get more work.

A: As I said last time, it'll be the first time ever when I hear that they don't want the ball more. That will be a first, whether it's a running back or a receiver or anybody else. I don't even worry about that. I worry about are we moving the ball, whatever it takes. If we're running the ball, great, or we're throwing the ball, all that counts is at the end of the game you're on top.

Q: During the bye week when you self-scout, did you see something that will lead you to be hopeful that this running game will kick into gear here?

A: Even last week we were only averaging 3.7 yards per carry, it's not like we're lighting up the field. It was better, which was encouraging. I think we're headed in the right direction. I've never felt that we're not going to get it going, but it's certainly a work in progress.

Q: It looked like Buffalo was the first team that didn't give you the eight-man fronts.

A: No, not really. Same stuff, but that's what we face every year. Everybody in the league faces the same thing unless you're throwing it 65 times a game and then they're going to play two-high. It's a combination of a lot of things and as I mentioned, we can block it better, certainly they can run it better. It's a combination.

Q: Jacobs averages eight or nine carries. That seems to be a pretty good work load for a backup.

A: Whatever you tell me I'll say yes [to] because I don't really know. Again, those things always have a way of playing themselves out so to be a concern at this point, as a coach, trust me, it's one of the least of our considerations. It's not a high priority. Is it getting us to play better, to run the ball better? Yeah that's a high priority. Usually if a guy is doing well and playing well then more carries come his way. Again, it's something that we have to get better at. We're working feverishly to get better at it. Again, usually between injuries and everything else, when it all plays out at the end of the year those things take care of themselves.

Q: How's Barden looked?

A: Okay. Yeah, I mean he's doing okay.

Q: How quickly can you expect him to get assimilated?

A: He had one game in two years so to think all of a sudden now it's Jerry Rice is unfair to the kid. That's not fair, but that one game he got hurt, unfortunately, was a good game. He played well that game. Hopefully he'll come back, but who do you take out? I'm asking you guys. Who are you going to take out? Who are you going to sit down? It's like anything else, you have to earn the chance and you do that by what he's doing in practice. But the first week he's practicing you're not saying that he's going to be as far along as the guys who have been playing and doing it. He hasn't been there [since] whenever the Dallas game was last year. To ask him to be the same as everybody else, that's an unfair expectation. But he is working hard. He is a bright kid. I think he is going to come along and when a chance presents itself we'll tap into him and see what he does.

Q: Could he play slot?

A: That's where he played a little bit, inside. It's not your prototypical slot, where you're looking for a quicker guy. I sound like a broken record, but to me it's immaterial to me how a guy gets open. Is it speed? Is it cutting? Is it his route sophistication and nuances? Is it size, strength, quickness? But [he's not like] most of the guys in there – the Wes Welkers, the Victor Cruzes, the Steve Smiths when we had him, those kind of guys. The last game he got injured he was in there and he caught the ball very well. He got open, more importantly. I knew he'd catch the ball, but he got open. He showed the courage and sophistication of route running. When he had his chance that day he played well.

Q: A lot of tight ends aren't big guys. Is there any thought to make him a tight end?

A: You have to block. You have to block. Ask him that one. You know how you ask running backs if they want to block? Ask your wide outs do they want to block. To be a tight end you have to be a blocker first.

Q: Can he not do that?

A: Are you going to ask a guy who's been a wide receiver to be a tight end and take on Trent Cole? It's not fair. You're asking a guy to do something he can't do. But you're right. That's where he more of resembles a slighter build tight end kind of kid. Again, he's a bright guy who can play a lot of positions. That's the appeal. He can go in and do a lot of different things for you.

Q: In your self-scout last week did you find a reason why the turnovers are down, especially from Eli?

A: Not from a schematics standpoint. I think he's doing a terrific job in judgment. We've been fortunate that some of the bounces that a year ago bounced up in the air were caught this year. They've bounced and fallen harmlessly to the ground. But I think his judgment has been good. I think he's been willing to take a sack. He's been willing to throw the ball away. He's done a great job with that. I don't see him forcing the ball. So from that standpoint, it was good. We had the bad turnover game and we got beat. Is it his fault? Well it's always going to come on him, but you have a receiver slip, you have a guy break a route, you have another guy not do what he's supposed to. But usually he's been on top of it and been able to overcome those things. I think more of a willingness to accept the ceiling of the play as perhaps a sack or a throw-away, which has been good.

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