Jon Tenuta Transcript

Linebackers Coach Jon Tenuta met Tuesday with the media before the first practice in full pads.

Is there an appreciable difference in playing right cornerback or playing left cornerback?

"You'll have to ask Coach Brown; I don't coach secondary."

Obviously, you have tweaked some things and used a lot of younger players. How much do you think you can learn about this unit between now and the opening game as opposed to what you can only know after playing another team?

"Are you talking about the unit as a whole? I think, obviously, as simple as you make it; then they play fast. I think, obviously, the object for them is to play fast. You don't do too much, but you do enough to stop what your opponent is doing. Our guys are relatively picking up everything we do. There's a lot of carryover in a lot of the things we do based on our fire zones to our man dog. So a lot of things come into play and guys are playing fast."

The first practices have been without pads. How much faster and how much more productive can you be today beginning with full pads?

"I think, obviously, this is the day that they all look forward to because you do some different things in practice that you don't do when you don't have full pads on. But I think our guys are playing fast and the speed of what we have done in practice and in all our group periods and individual periods. I'm very pleased and impressed with my guys and my unit of what they have done in practice. So we pick up the tempo and make things happen and their understanding of what we are trying to do defensively."

What advantages are there of going to two-a-days? Can you pick up things faster?

"I think it's all segmented on what exactly you ask in each practice; of what the main emphasis is. So you work on that emphasis aspect of it, and then whenever the next practice is, that emphasis. So based on: Are you in full pads or are you not in full pads? Is it inside run on this day? For the first practice, is it more-pads oriented? Is it situational? So every practice there is some main topic that you've got to hit."

Are there some guys that are standing out to you right now that look like they could be impact players?

"Well, I think to be honest with you, the guys that were here in the spring, a lot of those guys have matured just through the summertime. And, obviously, I'm very impressed with the freshmen that have come in here and started to learn the scheme; and now going out and getting in line and the ball is snapped; and now they are going to try and maintain their gap responsibility or, if they are a coverage guy, who they have to cover. But they are flying around to the ball so, obviously, the older guys have brought it down to the younger guys and the younger guys understand how we have to play fast."

Do you feel like you are starting to get through to them; that they are starting to understand what you are all about and how you want them to play?

"No question. I don't think there's any question about it."

Toryan Smith is in his third year and will be on the field. Do you think he has a sense of urgency to make an impact?

"Just based on four days of practice, you know, Toryan the last two days has had two very, very productive practices. So the best guys will play; based on the package; based on the situation; and he still is in the fray. So we'll just keep going as ball gets going here and get ready to go play in the first game."

Can you talk about the relationship between Mo and Brian Smith? Is it a classic case of mentor/pupil?

"I don't know if I'm going to go there with that. I think basically you have to talk to them more about that. There's pretty much one voice in my meeting room and then when we get out on the field, obviously, the older guys help the younger guys, so on and so forth. I think all my guys get along pretty good. That aspect you would have to talk to them."

Is there a demeanor about Brian that, not only as a playmaker, you chose him for that middle position? Is there an attitude or a mentality that he has?

"I just think he's the most productive guy there right now, and that's why he's there." Top Stories