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Quotes (10/31): Pat Shurmur, Daniel Jones, Sam Beal

Head Coach Pat Shurmur

Q: Is Sterling (Shepard) out of the (concussion) protocol?
A: He’s still in it. He was full, but until he’s finally cleared, he’s in (the protocol). You’re either in or you’re out.

Q: It seems like that’s all that’s left though.
A: We’ll see. Again, until he’s cleared fully by the people that can clear him, he’s in theory in the protocol. Not in theory. Practically, he’s in it.

Q: I’m just saying I know there’s some steps that guys have to take. You have to practice, get through the practice. He’s cleared those steps, it’s just the doctor part now, I think?
A: I would assume so, yeah.

Q: What did you see out of Daniel (Jones) in Detroit? (inaudible)
A: Daniel Jones? I thought he did a lot of good things. I think he took a step forward in his development. He made some really good throws, did some good things in the pocket. He got hit and went backwards on that first sack, whatever that bad play was. But he stayed in the moment and kept playing. I think he just reinforced for me that he’s tough, resilient, tries to do the right thing and has an aggressive approach to playing the position.

Q: Do you get a tangible feel from the guys in the room about how excited they are about how he has developed? (inaudible)
A: I think all of the players want to be surrounded by good players. I think that’s fair to say. So, when they see a young player that’s making improvements and has displayed an ability to at least perform well, I’m sure that’s uplifting for them.

Q: What does Saquon (Barkley) need to do in terms of pass protection? It seemed like (inaudible)
A: I wouldn’t say that. In that case there, the guy kind of delayed blitzed on him. He took off. That’s what happened there. He’s physical in his protection. I think he understands what he’s doing. He just has to continue to improve like everybody does.

Q: The Dolphins and the Steelers wouldn’t let their players wear microphones during Monday Night Football. Will you let your players wear microphones?
A: I’d prefer they don’t. I’m already on record, I’m not a big fan. I’m not a mic fan. Pat (Hanlon) teases me for that. Not Mike, the name Mike, either.

Q: So, when ESPN comes and asks you, you’re going to say no?
A: I’m going to say no.

Q: Does the buck stop with you on that one?
A: We’ll find out.

Q: In the past, what has your answer been?
A: In the past, my answer has been… They will have mic’d certain players. But in this case here, I’m going to say no. 

Q: Because of the (Sam) Darnold thing?
A: Because, first off, I believe that a lot of the communication that happens game day and in the heat of the moment, that should be a little bit sacred. That’s why I don’t like it.

Q: Was the Darnold thing a tipping point for you?
A: Well, I think it brought light to a problem that could occur.

Q: In the last three games, Dak (Prescott) against you guys has gone something like 68-of-101 for 1,053 (yards) and nine touchdowns. Is he just a tough matchup for you guys?
A: Ouch. Well yeah, he’s a really good player. That’s something that we have to get fixed this week when we play them. He’s an outstanding player. He has outstanding players around him. He has people that will block for him. Oh by the way, when it breaks down, he can run. So, he’s a challenge, and certainly, that’s a big part of what we have to do to defend them is kind of keep him in check.

Q: Why do you think it’s been such a matchup against you guys?
A: We just have to get it fixed. I don’t know. I think he’s had success against other teams, as well. But just from our standpoint, we need to get it fixed.

Q: You brought in a left-footed punter (Sean Smith) for the practice squad, obviously to get ready for Monday. What’s the biggest difference for how the ball comes off for a returner to make that adjustment
A: Well, it spins opposite. That goes without saying. Depending on where the tip of the ball is, up or down, how it drops away from you or carries away from you, is absolutely opposite of a right-footed punter. That’s why in this case, we brought in Smith to simulate that.

Q: We’ve seen Russell Shepard on the sideline the last couple of days. Is the plan to designate him to return?
A: We’ll see. I mean, he’s just going through it. At some point, we’ll possibly start his clock here. But I can’t tell you that at this point. But he’s in a position where he could if we want to.

Q: Did Sterling look rusty at all today coming back in his first full practice?
A: No, because in theory he’s been practicing. No, I wouldn’t say he’s rusty. He’s been practicing all along here in the protocol.

Q: We asked you about Dak. How important are matchups between quarterbacks and division opponents? I’m asking because this is Daniel’s first game against them, a divisional opponent.
A: Well, I think it’s important. As you go along and you play the team multiple times, then you get a feel for them, they get a feel for you. But you’re right, this is the first time they’re playing against Daniel as our quarterback. He actually did take a couple snaps, but nothing of note in the first matchup. But he’s on tape having played the games he’s played, so I’m sure that’s what they’re looking to try to defend.

Q: Is starting against the Cowboys a big step for a rookie quarterback, or starting against a big division foe like that? Is it different than just any other start?
A: He’s played against the Redskins, a division foe, and he’s played against some really outstanding defenses along the way here. He’s played on the road, he’s played at home. He’s just clicking them all off. This just happens to be the first time he’s playing against the Cowboys, who happen to be a division foe and an outstanding defense.

Q: Where is Grant Haley, and does that necessitate you making a Sam Beal move?
A: Grant Haley is practicing. I think his knee was a little sore, but he pretty much did everything today.

Q: What do you think is the ceiling on the offense with all of the skill guys healthy again?
A: Well, we’ll find out. I think we all need to go out and play well together. Again, this is probably the first time they’ll all sort of be out there together. Our new version of things. It’s important that they just go out and play, do their jobs and try to execute. If the ball is thrown your way, catch it. If you’re supposed to block somebody, block him. If we hand it to you and you run with it, make yards. I don’t mean to try to minimize it or boil it down too much for you, but they just need to do their jobs.

QB Daniel Jones

Q: Shurmur just said he would say no if ESPN asked to put a mic on anybody on Monday.  Will you wear a mic if ESPN asks you?

A: I don’t think so, no. I don’t think I’d wear a mic.

Q: Have you ever worn a mic before?

A: No, I haven’t.

Q: Not at Duke?

A: No.

Q: Why would you not want to do it?

A: I don’t know, I feel like I’d rather just be thinking about the game, thinking about what I need to do and communicate with my teammates normally.

Q: Did you see what happened with Sam (Darnold) and the ghost comment?

A: I did, yeah.

Q: What did you think of that?

A: I think it’s a tough situation there for him to be in. Obviously, (it’s) in the heat of the game. I’d rather not be mic’d up in that situation. It’s tough for him and I feel for him.

Q: Does that contribute to your reluctance to be mic’d up?

A: I don’t think in any situation or before that that I’d want to be mic’d up either.

Q: Did you and Pat (Shurmur) talk about that at all or did this just come up now?

A: It just kind of came up. We haven’t talked about it a whole lot.

Q: What did you get out of losing to Detroit, and out of the game last Sunday?

A: It was a tough loss, obviously. We’ve got to find a way to win those games. I said after the game, I think we’ve known throughout the year we can move the ball, we can score points. We have a lot of confidence in that. We just need to be able to do it in the big moments, we need to be able to do it when we have the chance to take the lead or something like that. I think, as far as our confidence, how we feel as an offense, I think we’ve been pretty steady in that and we’ll remain confident. I think we’ve known we can move the ball, it’s just about converting those opportunities.

Q: This will be the first game all year you guys will have Sterling (Shepard), Saquon (Barkley) (and) Golden (Tate III) on the field at the same time. What do you think that’ll do for the offense and for you?

A: I think it’ll help us. Those are all really good players. When you put them all together there’s a lot of different things that we can do, a lot of different ways to attack. I think the guys who stepped in have played well throughout the season. But yeah, getting Shep (Sterling Shepard) back this week will help.

Q: Does the short period you were on the field against Dallas in the season opener help at all in preparing?

A: Yeah, maybe just a little bit of experience against those guys. I think just being able to watch that game, the second time we play them, the second time we’ll run our offense against what they do, it’s helpful to be able to see that and learn from it.

Q: Are you getting used to this, the weekly press conferences, the attention and things like that?

A: I think so. It doesn’t change a whole lot in the week, I have to speak a couple times. But yeah, I think I’m getting used to it.

Q: Week to week, what’s the development been like? Everybody keeps talking about the game slowing down, is that the experience you’re having right now?

A: I think so. I mean at times I’ll feel more comfortable with some things, then there are those other things that I’m still working through and other things that I’m still trying to learn. I think to say it’s all slowing down this soon for me, I’m aware I’m still trying to learn a whole lot and trying to pick it up as quickly as I can.

Q: Getting back to the Cowboys for a little bit, we always talk about how everything is new for a rookie quarterback, but this is finally something that isn’t. You’ve already prepared for this team and played a handful of snaps against them--does that help? Is that a benefit to you in this game?

A: Yeah, I think so. Like you said, just seeing our stuff, our offense against them and kind of how we match up and what certain looks look like against them. I think all that stuff helps in being able to prepare the second time against a team.

Q: This is also your first start against this particular divisional opponent. As a quarterback, this is a team you’re going to be facing twice a year for however many years--do you think about that in terms of starting off this rivalry that is going to become with the Cowboys defense?

A: I don’t know if I necessarily think of it that way, but it is a rivalry, these two teams. It’s a divisional game, it’s an important game, it’s a big game, and I realize that there’s a rivalry element to the two teams playing, just in that they’ve been in the division and played for a long time. So, I’m excited to be part of that, and yeah, I think I realize it’s a big game.

Q: DeMarcus Lawrence kind of likes talking about the Giants quarterbacks, do you know anything about that?

A: No, I heard I guess he said something today, but I’m not worried a whole lot about that.

Q: He said you’re like the next Eli (Manning)—what do you make of that?

A: Well, I appreciate that. It’s nice of him to say.

Q: Do you expect to hear from him a lot during the game? I don’t know if Eli’s said anything to you about that part of it, but he does a lot of talking about Eli before the games, I don’t know how much he gets in his ear during the games.

A: I haven’t asked Eli about that, Eli didn’t say anything. I’m excited to play, like I said, it’s a divisional game, it’s a big game, so I’m excited to get out there.

Q: How much is he a guy that you have to keep your eye on specifically? He’s obviously their top pass rusher, a big guy.

A: He’s a good player. They’re good up front, they’ve got a good pass rush, so I think we’ll have a good plan for it and going in we’re confident in being able to handle that. So, I think he’s a good player, they have good players up front, but I think we’ll have a good plan and we’ll be ready to go.

Q: Have you noticed pass rushers try to get in your head when they knock you down or anything, try to give you the rookie treatment at all, that kind of stuff?

A: Not too much, really. It happens, but not too much.

Q: This might be the week.

A: Could be, that’s part of the game. But yeah, I’m excited.

Q: Maybe they’ll have him mic’d up (laughter).

A: Maybe.

Q: I would go with him over you if I was choosing (laughter).

A: Probably a lot more content.

Q: So, if we show up at the house this afternoon do you have anything good for us?

A: I need some candy, I don’t have any candy yet. So, I don’t know if someone comes knocking on the door, but I’ll get some candy on the way home.

Q: Did somebody already ask you how you ended up as Woody?

A: Yeah, it was the costume with the least pieces to it, so that’s the one I chose.

View rare photos from the historic rivalry between the New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys

CB Sam Beal

Q: How close do you feel, do you think you will be out there Monday?

A: They know I want to be out there. I’m not even thinking about it because I know it’s coming, I am just waiting for my moment, I’m waiting for that text or call, just ready for that moment.

Q: They haven’t told you it’s going to be this day?

A: They haven’t told me, they will tell me later. I’ll eventually find out. Whatever happens, happens.

Q: Do you want it to be the Cowboys game?

A: I have so much aggression, that’s the perfect team.

Q: What do you feel like you have to prove to them in the meantime?

A: You have to learn the playbook, you have to be quick, you have to be out there fast. You have to show that you can play, show that you can run. The Cowboys, they are not an easy team, so I can’t go out there 50 percent or 80 percent, I have to come out there 100 percent. They want to see the real me, I’ll get there though, only a couple more days.

Q: Can you really get there, you can’t really hit like they want to see you hit?

A: You don’t want to be like that, I’m out there running around, that’s perfect. As long as I’m out there learning the calls, out there with the team, that’s perfect for me.

Q: You started off getting some scout team looks against Golden Tate?

A: Going against those guys just gets your feet right back. They aren’t taking it easy on you, Golden told me, “you are going to get your feet wet again, we aren’t going to take it easy on you just because you are on scout team” and I appreciated that. Every time I go out there I try to work on my technique, my feet. I’m feeling good, though. Honestly, I’m feeling really good.

Q: Have you gotten team reps?

A: Yea, I have gotten a couple. They are gradually going to put me in there, but I got a couple team reps, I appreciated it.

Q: How tough has this been for you, it’s been a long time?

A: As an athlete, when you love this game, when you have a passion for it and you sit out and just watch, it’s not the most fun, it takes a toll on you. Just having the injury last year, but I’m in a better spot because last year helped me. It was kind of tough for me last year, but this year I’m like okay I have tunnel, I have a light, so I can be more calm and take my time. It’s always tough for any athlete.

Q: We have sort of framed this as your comeback, but this is your debut. I’m sure this is something you haven’t just dreamed of for a year and a half but your whole life.

A:  Yea, the good feelings kind of took it away. Now I just want to prove myself. I’ve been here, the feeling of being a rookie is out the window. I don’t get butterflies anymore, I’m more of like come on I’m trying to get out there.

Q: Did you redshirt in college?

A: This is the longest I have ever sat out. This was something I had to get used to.

Q: Who helped you when you were going crazy a little bit?

A: Family, friends, I had a real friend that stayed up here most of the time I was hurt, she really helped me a lot. You want to think about your family when you are here, you do it for your family, you don’t do it for yourself. You love the game, that part is for you. When you do things, and make the plays you make, you do it for your family, because they are watching. They are the ones that are important.

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