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2019 NFL Draft

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Quotes (4/27): GM Gettleman, Coach Shurmur

DAVE GETTLEMAN: We got 10 guys, seven on defense, threeon offense. You know, really we feel like we addressed everything we pretty much wanted to with this group. You know, today we had a lot of speed today. Notre Dame kid, Wisconsin, Auburn, Ballentine, all those guys can run. Julian Love, we see him competing for the nickel and he can play outside, as well. Ryan Connelly, we see him as a versatile Mike linebacker, very smart, instinctive kid. Darius Slayton is a take the top off the coverage guy. He's a 4.3 guys who plays 4.3, so he's got big time speed. Corey Ballentine, another height, weight speed guy and just played at a small school, and he's got ball skills, he's got ball production. He has played the nickel, as well. We've got the big tackle from Kentucky, George (Asafo-Adjei). I'm not going to try to pronounce his last name. I don't want to embarrass myself. But we see him competing at right tackle, and then we've got the Chris Slayton kid from Syracuse who's a big, violent, inside banger.

So we just -- I stated previously in the postseason presser and a couple times since then that we needed to help this defense, and I feel we addressed that and we filled in some holes with the offense.

PAT SHURMUR: These are all guys that are going to -- the first few guys certainly come in and we're going to expect a lot from them, and everybody here has got a role on our team. Julian Love is a really, really good football player. He can play in the slot. He can play high. He's kind of got that tweener kind of corner safety ability, which makes him a unique player for us. Ryan Connelly we add to the linebacker group, he's one of those guys, he can run sideline to sideline, very physical, and he's a very, very effective, very productive guy. Darius Slayton is an outside receiver that has some inside characteristics, but the 4.3 speed shows up on tape. He's extremely fast. He can get behind the defense, and we all know the effect that can have for an offense.
And then Corey Ballentine, he's just a good solid football player, and he's a guy that's going to come in and compete. And the one thing to remember is all these guys as they fight for a spot on 1st, 2nd and 3rd down, these guys all can run, so they'll be contributing on 4th down, on special teams. And then the last two picks, the seventh-round picks, these were guys that we had targeted, so we picked an offensive and a defensive lineman to fill out the group.
The good thing about this, and as I watch the process, these are all players that we like for numerous reasons, and they were available and in the conversation when we were picking them, so we weren't reaching around the board trying to find guys. In fact, we just kind of hit it right with these players, and so they're medically fine, they're great human beings, and they're outstanding football players, so we're glad to add them to our team.

Q. What's the reason for three corners, not a safety or three corners before the offensive tackle?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: Well, I think that, again, I'm not going to reach. I mean, they were there. These guys were graded and evaluated, and again, what happened was -- with the tackles and the defensive linemen, really after we took Dexter, it feels like three weeks ago, after we took Dexter two days ago, the defensive tackle group fell off the face of the earth, and once we got down through the -- once the fourth round was over, our offensive tackles, that value was pretty much wiped out.
The Kentucky kid we had in the fifth round, and the Slayton kid, they were both fifth-round values for us. You can never have too many corners, either. Let's let them compete. We've got some really good-quality -- some good returning guys. Really another draft pick for us is Sam Beal. He had the surgery. He's coming along well. The way the league is, you guys are the ones that keep banging at us, pass rushers, corners, that's what we did. We listened to you, you know.

Q. Did you know -- you ended up taking 10 guys. Did you know -- you have to see how it all manipulates and you can't force it, but did you pretty much go into this on Thursday and say we're going to get a lot of defensive players, it's not going to be three or four, we have to build this defense and we're going to do that, whether it's five, six, seven, eight, it's got to be a lot of defensive players?
PAT SHURMUR: Well, I think from my perspective, when we were getting ready to pick, there were some offensive players that ended up being in the conversation on the same line, and we just made some decisions that directed us towards the defense. We knew we were going to make some significant changes to the defense, and we already have, two safeties, Markus Golden. So we've done some significant things on defense prior to the draft. We just want to try to improve our football team and make moves that are going to improve the whole team, and I think it's pretty obvious by the way the season played out, there was a pretty -- it was pretty bright that we needed to make some significant changes in some areas, so we went into the draft trying to make our team better. Each individual pick you go through the process of deciding, is this the guy or the guy next to him, and it kind of fell to where we probably picked maybe a corner or two more just because the value of those players was good. So that's how it kind of filled out.

DAVE GETTLEMAN: I'll give you an example. Corey Ballentine, he's 5'10", he's 196 pounds, he runs 4.44 plays 4.44. He's got ball skills, he's played the nickel, he's played outside. How do you pass him up?

Q. The natural reaction when you draft corners is, is Janorisstill going to be on your roster. Is there any doubt in your mind that he won't be here?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: No, Janoris has a bunch of puppies he's got to train.

PAT SHURMUR: He'll become a good teacher. I admire Janoris. He's tough. He's competitive. He always answers the bell, and I've gained a huge appreciation for him coaching him over the last year or so, and so just keep -- put all these young guys in a room with him, and I think Janoris will be Janoris, and if these young guys are smart enough to listen, then they're going to learn a lot of really good stuff.

Q. We only talked to these guys for a couple minutes after you drafted them, but a lot of them seemed like extremely high-character guys, team captains, very grateful, very -- what you're looking for, right, as far as culture. Is it tough when you're scouting these players to -- because you don't want to reach, right, to find a guy who has the value and talent and also has that character along with it, especially in a class that you assembled here with a lot of them who seem to have both?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: You know, it's part of the evaluation process, and I bang on our scouts big time, you've got to vet these guys out. Very honestly, these are the kinds of kids we want to bring in here, smart, intelligent kids who hate to lose, and that's what we're looking for. This was an especially unique group. But we put blues on these kinds of guys, and we had a draft that was almost completely blue because that's what you want to build around.

Q. What about George (Asafo-Adjei) specifically impressed you? On the phone he told us a little bit about his adversity, his background, single mom, all that, and obvious that he's not a guy who's on a lot of mock drafts, so something must have clicked, right?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: Well, it's the length. It was the toughness. You know, he's played in the SEC -- he's going to see good pass rushers every week. He's kind of getting a little taste of what's ahead of him. Like I said, the length, the toughness, and the ability to fight through, lining up in the SEC every Saturday.

Q. We know Remmers came in for a visit a month ago. Any update on where that stands?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: Well, he's still rehabbing, and we're continuing to talk with him, so we'll see.

Q. Are you optimistic that that could happen?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: Time will tell. Got to rehab. Going to bring him in and take another look eventually.

Q. That's essentially the plan then, bring him in another time?
PAT SHURMUR: We had a good visit when he was in.

Q. Did you feel like only taking one offensive lineman, it seems like you're leaving yourself a little light, that's why Remmers --
DAVE GETTLEMAN: Right, no, it makes sense.

Q. Do you have guys that you like now and in the drafting period that maybe you didn't have grades to draft them but you like them coming --
DAVE GETTLEMAN: That's what's going on upstairs right now. There are a couple guys specifically, and we're hoping to land them.

Q. Your son Kyle apparently is signing with Kansas City...

Q. How was that for you today, having to balance your draft and what was happening with your son?
PAT SHURMUR: No, I think it's terrific. I think certainly my history with Andy (Reid) runs deep, and so as we're watching the picks come off, certainly that was running parallel, hoping he was going to end up in a really good place, and I think regardless of whether he was picked or not, he's ending up in a really good place, so he'll go there and compete, and I think he's going to be with a terrific team, and what I consider to be an outstanding quarterback culture, and that's what you want for a young player that's going to learn how to play the position at this level, so I'm happy for him.

Q. I know that you drafted a quarterback, but was that ever going to be an option here, or did you want that to be separate?
PAT SHURMUR: He and I talked about it, and I think that's got to run separate. That's the way we always parented, as well – listen, we're here to support you, but go make your way in the world. We're going to try to help you in every way possible, and as we all know, sometimes this is not very kind. And so he's always known that, and he's always known that he had to go out and do it and compete, and this is just the next step in that, next phase actually.

Q. You're lined up to have a lot of cap space the next off-season?

Q. Is that a big part of your plan, are you looking ahead knowing that that's a deliberate thing, it didn't just kind of happen that way?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: It was kind of both. You know, it's funny, if you have confidence in your drafting skills, you know that two, three years with the -- you're going to be able to start extending, and you always want to be in a position to extend. It was like when I was in Carolina this -- I'm holding on to cap space, and they're screaming about why aren't you doing this, why aren't you doing that. I said, I don't know, call me crazy, there's this guy Luke Kuechly we're going to have to extend and some guy named Cam Newton you're going to have to extend, and these things are going to happen. It's one of those deals where there's obviously different theories on how to manage that cap, but at some point in time, shame on you if you can't keep your good young players home. In Carolina there were a couple times where I just couldn't do it. Financially we had to pick between Kawann Short and Star Lotulelei, had to pick between Trai Turner and Andrew Norwell. They're both going to cost a fortune, so you had to make decisions and keep moving and take the comp picks. But to answer your question here, no, it's part of it, because you can't -- you don't want to get in a position where you're kicking cans down the road and you're restructuring and you're adding cap issues down the road. In an ideal world you clear it and then you can do what you call -- you can get the long-term contracts with flat paragraph 5s and back loading and doing all that kind of crazy stuff. So to answer your question, the short answer is, yes, it's part of the plan.

Q. Going back to day one, when you come into a draft off two tough seasons where you've won eight games, is it tough to make a pick for a future quarterback? You're using a 6and you know he's probably not going to play until next year so there's no immediate benefit?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: That's a great question, and that's why I always say, I'm on a tightrope. I've got to think short-term, and I've got to think long-term. That's the box I'm in. That's the position I'm in. Coaches have to win now, and I ask myself -- I've told you guys a million times, I ask myself that question, am I giving Pat and the guys enough players to win with, okay. Andreally, you know, it's tough. But I can say this to you guys right now. When we got in here Thursday night, the question was posed, why didn't you wait until 17. Well, I know for a fact there were two teams that would have taken him in front of 17. I know that for a fact. So it's tough, it really is. It wasn't easy for me to pass up Josh Allen. For me, my background, that was very, very difficult. But I think that much of Daniel Jones and his future as an NFL quarterback.

Q. How much did you try and move up with that 17 pick, maybe get ahead of those two teams so you had two first-round picks, let's say in the top 10?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: After we picked Dan?

Q. Or did you contemplate it beforehand?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: No, I didn't -- no, did not contemplate beforehand. We were going to make the pick at 6 and then go from there. I had no intention of moving up. None.

Q. You guys both said Thursday night that you talked to Eli and he was okay, then there was a report on the radio yesterday that he was upset. Anything you guys -- do youguys still believe he's okay? And did you talk to Lauletta?

PAT SHURMUR: We saw Lauletta in the training room the next day.

Q. So you talked to him?
PAT SHURMUR: Yeah, our people talked to him.

Q. And he was okay?
PAT SHURMUR: Yeah, as far as we know.

Q. Do you want to comment on the radio?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: I'm not going to respond to that. Come on, now.

Q. How much better do you feel about walking the tightrope and having the long-term and short-term crunch, how much clearer is that long-term vision? How much better do you feel about it now after this draft?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: I feel much better. I thought we had a very -- a real quality draft. And time will tell. We're going to know how good this draft was in three years. That's when we'll know. We'll know how good last year's draft was in two more years.

Q. Without being flippant, but do you ever sit here after a draft and look at the things and say to yourself, this didn't work out for us this year, I don't have a good feeling about this?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: You mean like tonight I'm going to look at these tonight and have that feeling?

Q. Yeah.
DAVE GETTLEMAN: I'm telling you right now, no.

Q. I don't mean this year, I mean in any year would you ever think that? Or do you always think I picked these guys that are good players?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: Of course. You know, as far as I'm concerned, we had a hell of a weekend, you know? I mean, gosh. They're good players here.

Q. Is there -- with Oshane Ximines, you've got interior pressure on the D-line too, is there more you'd still like to add to the pass rush from the outside?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: We'll see. You know, we'll see. Again, you guys are forgetting, Markus Golden two years ago before the ACL had 14 sacks. He's coming back, whatever he had, fivelast year. We added him. Lorenzo (Carter) is going to be better. He had the five last year. They get better. The young kids do improve, you know? And really at the end of the day -- listen, my first year at Carolina, we had 60 sacks. It was nuts, okay. Do I want to have 60 sacks every year? Who doesn't? I know Pat wouldn't be upset.
But at the end of the day, it's about moving guys off their spots. It's about all the other stuff. So you know, it's a game within a game.

Q. Pat, what do you need to see from Daniel when he gets here on Thursday, Friday or Saturday?
PAT SHURMUR: We're just going to get him started, put him through the paces, and I think every time they go on the field, you want them to execute what we've given him to do that day, and so we'll start at square one with him and get him up and running and see how far he can take it and how quickly he can learn it. Our anticipation is he's going to learn quickly, and we've seen that he can perform at a high level. It's just got to look like good football, and I think that's make good decisions, throw on time, be accurate, execute well, be smart with the football, all the things you're looking for on Sunday you want to see it in practice, and you give him a little bit at a time, as time goes on, it builds up, and you just hope he builds on that.

Q. Is there a number of slots for the UDFA's that you're looking for?
DAVE GETTLEMAN: Well, we started with 67, 67 plus 10 is 77. I'm counting in my head, I'm not making fun. So basically got 13 -- we may sign just half a dozen guys. I'm not in a rush -- I think I told you guys yesterday, I'm not in a rush to get to 90. In an ideal world you want 90 guys that belong in a camp. So we're -- upstairs those guys know, if he doesn't belong in a camp, we'll wait. We've got rookie mini-camp coming in, we'll have tryout guys, rookie mini-camp next weekend. There will be guys there on tryouts. The first team to 90 doesn't win the Super Bowl, so we'll just kind of do that.

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