Del Rio Conference Call Highlights

Jaguars head coach Jack Del Rio had plenty to say about the Colts-Jaguars mathups, Indy's small secondary versus his big, physical receivers, the Colts pass-rushing duo of Robert Mathis and Dwight Freeney, and much more!

(on how difficult it is coming off a big win and playing another big game)
"Obviously we expended a great deal of energy Monday night taking on the defending Super Bowl champions (Pittsburgh Steelers), and we know we're on a short week and we're traveling, so we've adjusted our schedule a little bit. We pulled the guys out of pads today and shortened up the day. We're aware of the fact that we're on a short week and we spent a lot of time on Monday night getting (that) victory. So we're trying to do all we can to be as healthy and fresh and get prepared for Indy when we get up there for Sunday's game."

(on if it helps playing a division opponent on a short week, knowing them a bit)
"I think certainly the fact that it's a division opponent that we play and study twice a year, it is from a coaching standpoint—the hours we have to put in to know about them—is probably a little bit better for us. If we had been trying to figure out Pittsburgh's blitz schemes on a short week and traveling, it would have made for a bigger task. But obviously, they have a lot of weapons and they're a darn good football team. So, it's plenty of work as it is."

(on LB-Mike Peterson changing the way people look at MLBs being lighter and faster, and how MLBs were when he played)
"Well, he's a little lighter. I think you can have different styles of players. I think the biggest thing is to have guys that can make plays and be productive for you. After spending his time at outside linebacker (in Indianapolis), he's moved to the inside for us and he's done a really nice job. He's very competitive, very fiery. And he's given us some playmaking, some range at the middle linebacker position that we covet, and it's been a good fit for us."

(on MLB being a natural fit for Mike Peterson) 
"I think each year he's gotten a little more comfortable in terms of where he belongs, where he fits, how it all ties together. He's really been very productive the last couple of years, leading our team in tackles, coming up with sacks, coming up with interceptions. He's really playing some good football for us."

(on LB-Mike Peterson saying the days of playing the respect card being over, being behind them)
"I believe that. I think we're playing for more than respect. I think for us, the respect, we want to respect what we're doing and our approach and our preparation and be respectful of our opponents and go out and compete. In terms of other people noticing, I think at some point, you quit asking or talking about, ‘Can you compete in games,' and you start talking about other more important factors. So, that's kind of where we feel we are as a football team. We're maturing as a football team. We need to be more mature as a football team, but I think one of the areas where we've come up a little short in the past is not keeping our poise and composure in some of the big games. Certainly, we've started very well this year in two ‘big games' and played with a great deal of composure and a great deal of poise. Even in the Dallas game, when we were behind early, we continued to do the right things. I feel good about the maturation process that our football team has undertaken."

(on how much he made composure a point of emphasis)
"I look at it. Last year, certainly we set ourselves back a little bit, not handling the hype and pressure well. Me, as a coach, I'll take the lead and say that it starts with me. We want to be prepared and focused. We want to go out and compete and play smart and tough. I think we have our bearings, I think we have that understanding. I've been driving the point home. And I take ownership. I told the guys this morning, that it starts with me and I'm going to be better and we all need to be better. I think that's just part of the maturation process."

(on this game becoming a rivalry)
"I think in order to have a rivalry, you have to make it competitive, and Indy has won 10 straight in the division and they have basically been dominant and in control of this division for the last three years. We feel like we're a better football team. Obviously, we have aspirations of winning a division title, and you have to win in your division to do that. So, we get an opportunity. It's a new year, a new opportunity. If we want to be a part of this race, then we have to win in the division. It starts Sunday against Indy."

(on the size of Jacksonville's receivers—if that was planned or if it just happened that way)
"We like big, athletic guys. Certainly, we have three very talented, big, athletic guys at wide receiver, and they're getting better. I think with the retirement of Jimmy Smith, one, it's opened up the quarterback to really work the progression and not really lean so much on Jimmy and then two, I think it's provided opportunities and each of those young men are working really hard to take advantage of the opportunities they know they are going to get now that Jimmy's not here."

(on matching up Jacksonville's tall WRs against the Colts' smaller DBs)
"We look for matchups in our advantage all over the place. We also try to minimize our exposure to matchups that aren't in our favor. They have some good players. We have some good players. That will all be part of the chess match."

(on downplaying the two previous wins and explaining that it is a long season)
"It is. It's a long season. We're in Week 3 of a 17-week season, counting the bye, and it's a long season. I've played and coached in this league long enough to understand it's a long season. You can't get too high or too low. We want to be steady, we want to be consistent. Certainly, we understand the importance of winning in your division, as I think everybody understands that. It is early in the year. We don't want to make too much of the first couple of games, whether they came out in our favor or not. We're happy to be 2-0, but I think we have a very healthy understanding of what's ahead of us."

(on DE-Robert Mathis and having two end rushers—Mathis and Dwight Freeney—like the Colts) 
"Very talented. I know Robert Mathis is probably less heralded, but certainly we have a healthy respect for him. Very talented, both of them, at harassing the quarterback. You can't pay too much attention to the ends because DT-Montae Reagor and the guys inside are pretty good, too. It's a good pass-rushing unit and (Defensive Line Coach) John Teerlinck is somebody that I'm familiar with. I played in Minnesota when he was the D-Line Coach, and I know that he does a great job working with the defensive linemen and teaching them how to get to the quarterback."


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