Howard talks defensive improvements

The defense seems much improved so far this spring, and Tracy Howard is one of the leaders on that side of the ball. Read on to see what he's saying about it.

On spring:
It's going well. I'm just out here playing ball and getting better. You couldn't ask for more.

On the defense having more fire now:
Guys are growing up. Everyone is playing with attitude. Guys like Perryman, Fig, and Jamal Carter. They play like dogs and everyone feeds off them. We're all getting better as a whole.

On a big hit by Jamal Carter today:
That's just adrenaline in practice. You want to be physical. Jamal does a good job of bringing that energy to the team.

On going against bigger backs in practice now:
Playing against those guys helps with tackling. Duke can do it all. With those backs, they're more downhill runners and drop their shoulders 90 percent of the time. Playing against those guys we have to be even more physical.

On his confidence:
I've always been confident. I'm bigger so my ability is probably better to bring down bigger backs. I never come on the field without confidence. I can pack a bigger punch now.

On his tackling:
I've been able to tackle big backs. That was never a problem. Now, I don't have to hurt as more or bruise as much. Football is football. I've always tackled. Coach D and those guys have gotten me better since high school. Being bigger and stronger has really helped in that area.

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