Gaines talks about his return to practice

Jimmy Gaines started his first practice today and talked about he was feeling, also revealing his admiration for former Canes OLB, Sean Spence. Read on to see everything he's saying.

Q: What was it like the first week seeing everyone out there? Was it frustrating seeing everyone else out there?
A: Definitely. I'm just glad that I'm back.

Q: Is the fight for the black jersey and important thing for you?
A: Yeah. I'm coming back and I'm ready to compete.

Q: What are you doing to get yourself ready for this season that you haven't in the past?
A: Well, really, just by helping everyone else. Helping the young guys and helping some of the older guys too. I wasn't able to help them, which helped me. Just by teaching other people their jobs it helped me learn more and more.

Q: Would you say you're 100 percent now?
A: I'm saying that I'm good to go.

Q: How did you hurt your foot?
A: This happened during the spring, but it's over now.

Q: You had a very productive year, last season. Are you going to return that energy?
A: I'd like to think so. I'm working really hard to get back. I'm just trying to get back to where I was.

Q: Coach Golden said this Thursday that you weren't going to play for the fall scrimmage this Sunday. Are you disappointed about that?
A: No, I'm not disappointed about it because they have faith in me and they know what I can do out there. I definitely want to play, but at the same time they're just trying to protect me and help me out.

Q: Coach also said that you might not be able to attend tomorrow's practice. Do you feel comfortable going tomorrow, or do you think it's better to reserve your strength and make sure that your foot is ok.
A: I'm going to do what the head coach says. So if he says "do this", I'm going to do it. He knows what's best, so I trust him.

Q: Today's your first practice. Do you feel good going out there?
A: Yeah, definitely. I'm excited.

Q: Are you going to try and reserve your movements?
A: I'm just going to play. Just play the game and that's it.

Q: Is there anybody in particular that you watched in the offseason, or any former players or NFL players that you have watched to help your game out?
A: Sean [Spence]. That's my guy, ever since I got here. I kept studying Sean. Whenever Sean was here I would ask "hey, Sean, how's it like over there? Do you read the same? How does the speed compare?".

Q: What have you taken from watching a guy like Spence play?
A: His work ethic, and his knowledge of the game. He's the smartest football player I have been around.

Q: How would you compare your football intelligence to his?
A: Minuet. (Laughs)

Q: What's it like to have a guy like that to lean on?
A: Having Sean here was great. He was like big brother. He helped me out my freshman year and my sophomore year. He was a big help for me.

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