Coach D talks about seniors on defense

What will it take to replace Anthony Chickillo and Denzel Perryman? Read on to see what defensive coordinator Mark D'Onofrio is saying about that and much more.

On whether practicing in rain today will help for Saturday:
No doubt. It definitely does. Whether it happens on Saturday or not, we have to be prepared. The kids were fine. They had good enthusiasm. They had good attitudes. Now we will watch the tape and get some stuff corrected.

On the seniors on defense:
There are six and we will miss them all. Chickillo and Olsen up front. Denzel and Thurston at linebacker and Ladarius and Fentress in the secondary. Other guys contributed but those guys played a major role. It’s a group of six that played a lot over four years and we will certainly miss them. We hope they’ll go out and play their best game on Saturday.

On what Chick has meant the most:
It’s his stability. He’s been a guy who battled through injuries and continued to play. From that standpoint, you can always count on him to be there and that’s a lot to replace.

On losing Denzel Perryman:
He’s meant a lot. With Chick as well, Denzel has continued to improve. He came back to improve. He was a few points from being the Butkus award winner. That’s what you want as coaches. He came back and got better.

On being able to replace those seniors:
The thing that happens, it is always hard. When someone has success in the NFL, you can say it’s hard. What this group gave us is a standard of how to play and prepare. Moving forward, we will be better for what that group of guys taught our younger guys. Replacing Denzel wont be easy but we have to make sure all 11 guys are ready to do their jobs.

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