Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn also met the media after practice Wednesday. Here’s what he had to say:
(On the first thing he noticed about the defensive line) The first thing I guess I’ve seen from the very first day–I was pleased at the mindset of how hard the guys had worked coming in to camp. You kind of had a sense, with knowing this group, of how hard they would work. But then when I kind of came out here for the first practice, you got a sense of the intensity, the mindset to really reestablish the work ethic that it takes. So that’s the first thing I noticed.
(On what Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas have shown since receiving so much attention after the Super Bowl) I think really just the mindset of coming in of we become good players by how hard we work. And really, as you guys know here, the thought of the competition is how good you and I can push against each other to elevate both of our games. And so those two in specific have really embraced that in terms of the competition–the way they go against some terrific receivers. You know the speed out here. If you can run with some of these guys out here, you got a shot. You can feel that.
(On the offensive guys saying working against this defense every day can only make you better and if he feels the same way about working against the offense) We totally feel the same way and the nice part with Tom [Cable] and with Bev [Bevell], there’s a lot of challenging schemes that go on, you know, regarding this offense. Both in the run game and in the pass game so it’s a terrific match up for us along with the players who get to go against each other so today was a good day where we featured a lot of one-on-ones. It was tight-ends and some safeties. It was offensive line, defensive line. It was, you know, some corners and some wide-receivers for just some individual work, just for that emphasis, and the competition of going against each other, to really make both units as good as they can and you really, you admire and appreciate how hard they’re going against each other and, in a respect, it’s for each other, how hard they’re going against each other. You know what I mean, there’s a level of respect there. How hard can I go against you for both of us to play at our very best?
(On Byron Maxwell’s progress in camp so far) You know, the thing that I always regarded with Maxwell is his technique. That’s one of the things that I think – he is one of our most technically sound guys. So as he’s getting going into his technique, he just keeps getting sharper and sharper. So I think, what are we five days in, that’s really when he’s starting now to really be at his best, when he can continue to grind at his technique so from the first to now, he’s one of those guys that like, even though we’re calling him a veteran player now, he keeps improving. More work and more reps that he gets.
(On missing so many linebackers right now) Fortunately for us, the guys have done a good job of adding a number of players at that position so for us, it’s next man up. Certainly one that comes to mind, for me, is Brock Coyle, where maybe he didn’t get as many reps, where now he’s getting more reps and do you take advantage of that opportunity? So it gives those guys a little bit of position flexibility. Am I a Mike that can play a Will? Are you a Sam linebacker but you can also play some things in Nickel? So these things come up all the time and now for us, it’s really the next man up. We have lots of trust in the guys behind them. You saw that with Malcolm [Smith], you know who started games at Sam and starting games at Will. Well he was one that we were talking about in training camp last year – Malcom Smith’s doing a nice job, he’s got good versatility, he can play both spots and then when he got in the game he certainly played well. Although, it’s disappointing to have guys miss time. We went through that last year, if you remember, a little bit, with like, Chris Clemons and Cliff Avril, where they missed a lot of time at our Leo position and it elevated, we got more turns for Benson Mayowa. Okay, we see what we might have there. So as a young player, although, we don’t like to have those guys out, for the young player, the light should go on a little bit and say here’s an opportunity for me and he’s [Coyle] one guy, in specific, that I thought has done a nice job.
(On Brock Coyle) I think there are a couple things. One, I noticed that he’s a really good finisher. The guy is in terrific shape to play football. He’s got good instincts to play and his versatility to play both Mike and Will and he came in really ready to compete, right from the get go, didn’t back down from any of the challenges we put in front of him so he’s off to a good start this early part of camp.
(On Terrell Thomas as an option in the slot) We do. Yeah, one thing I think we see is he’s got length. You know, to get his hands on you so yeah we’re going to try him inside. He’s got such great lateral quickness. That’s one of the things you’re looking for inside when he plays in the Nickel so that’s one of the spots we will feature him inside.
(On Byron Maxwell proving himself last year while playing alongside Sherman, Thomas and Chancellor) I wasn’t surprised at all. I think if you asked any of us, “Would Byron Maxwell play well when he gets his opportunity?” I think we’d all agree we would have said yes. It was because of that consistency that we saw from him out here going against the guys day after day. Those guys that can continually do it day after day and not be up and down, you really have a lot of confidence going into the game. If they can just continue to do what they’ve been doing they’re going to be fine. If some players were to have the inconsistency, that’s something we can really iron out. But Byron in specific had a really consistent training camp last year heading into the season.
(On what he’s seen from Jordan Hill thus far) I think an increase in strength. It’s hard sometimes, as you guys know, to evaluate a lineman during the offseason because all of the practices are going to be in shorts. He worked hard to get stronger, that was one of the things we really wanted to make an emphasis to him. He looked good in the spring; you could tell he was stronger. But it was really until we came out here and he got to push against J.R. Sweezy and James Carpenter, guys who are really strong, so I can see that increase in strength for him. He’s always had the mindset and the attitude to improve. That strength is not only allowing him to be a better run player, but also in his rush too.
(On what he’s seen from Greg Scruggs, who missed last season) I’m one of the ones who is so excited because I didn’t get a chance to coach Greg in his rookie year, so I came in and he missed the year last year. Right off the bat you see his versatility, he’s got the size to play some base end for us and then we can slide him inside to play in nickel. He’s a very well-conditioned guy. In the 2 minute the other day he was one of the ones who was out in front leading down after down after down. That really impressed me about his intensity. So I think right now the thing that’s jumping out is his versatility, where he’s able to play more than one spot, and he can play on all downs.
(On Jesse Williams) The thing going into this camp was could he stay healthy and could he play? For us right now with Jesse, we can see the strength at the line of scrimmage has not changed, and he actually got a little bit leaner. So for us, we can’t wait to see what he can do. He’s as strong as he ever has been, but still a little leaner so his mobility is better.
(On how Williams has been moving after his injury last season) The weight down and the mobility have been a real increase.
(On why Williams was carted off the field today) I don’t have any idea. We’re going to have to check on that today, hopefully everything is good.