VIDEO: Jefferson on Secondary Progress

Anthony Jefferson, the junior safety, talks about the progress of the young secondary and how the unit is looking forward to the challenge of facing the pass-happy Pac-12...

Anthony Jefferson talked to us after practice.

On the early bye weeks:
For one, with the bye weeks, one benefit is that we get rest and I think that is really important right now, leading into Pac-12 play. We get our legs under ourselves and get a little more rest and treatment that we couldn't have gotten if we had a game. And the second thing is with the young guys, they got a lot more reps this week so I think it's been really helpful with this bye week, to get them caught up to speed.

On how he's benefitting from the bye:
Just mostly rest. I'm getting a lot of rest this week, getting my legs back and a lot of treatment. It's going to give me some time to catch up and study and get two weeks to prepare for them, so I think that will be good for us.

On what he'll do on the off weekend:
I'm trying to watch games all weekend. I think it will be good for me to see what other teams do. Look at other secondaries and see what I can learn from that and how I can get better. I think it will be a good weekend for me.

On the transition to safety:
I played a little safety last year. Corner is my natural position. But as far as safety, I've been getting real acclimated. I've been really comfortable there and I think it's best for the team and we can get guys in position that are suited to play those positions. I think it's been really good. I'm able to be the vocal leader on the field. I think it's working really well. And we'll continue to mesh better.

On how this season feels to him after injuries early in his career:
It's just a relief and a blessing to actually be able to step back on to the field. Just being able to get back on the field and have my family support me at the games and my grandfather being able to come and see me play like he's always been, it's a good feeling. I can't really explain it right now, I'm just going to keep playing and doing what I do and keep getting better and better and get along with it.

On Coach Mora:
Coach Mora has been really great. He's a phenomenal guy as everyone knows. He's just made sure I stayed on track and do whatever I needed to do to get to this point and never let me veer off into the wrong direction with the mental and the physical so I think he's been a big help in helping me get to where I am now.

On starting to face some more passing offenses in Pac-12 play:
For one I think it will be a good challenge for the secondary. For two, I think it will be a good opportunity to show what our secondary is made of. I'm just excited about it. I'm not sure about everyone else, but I'm pretty sure our group is excited, because like you said, we haven't been challenged too much so I think this will be a good test for us and show us what kind of secondary we want to be for the future.

On if the young guys have been fazed or taking it in stride:
Tahaan, he's played in a few games now, Priest has played in some games, so they've gotten their feet wet a little bit so I don't think they're fazed at all. It's just a learning process. And as they keep developing and keep practicing, and get more used to the defense and the technical stuff, I think they'll be phenomenal players. It just takes some time. They're young guys and they have plenty to learn and as the season goes on, they'll get much better.

On if he's watched film on Utah yet:
We've watched a few games already. They do actually pass it, their quarterback is a tall and has good vision. It's a good opportunity and a great challenge.

On facing Dres Anderson, the son of Flipper:
I don't know him, but that was told to us in a meeting, that his dad is Flipper Anderson and played at UCLA. That should be a great challenge.

On going on the road with a young secondary in the Pac-12:
I don't think it's a challenge, I think it's another opportunity. We have young guys, but all of our young guys have been playing great. I don't think the environment will faze us. How we play the game will affect everything. I don't think any type of away game or home game will affect us. We're growing and maturing a lot, faster than I thought we would. I think it's how we come together that will affect the outcome.

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