Andy Reid Press Conference Transcript

Of course every head coach is going to put the best possible spin on their team's draft efforts, but Andy Reid seems pretty happy with the Eagles performance. Find out what he had to say in his post-draft press conference.

Opening remarks:
"We have picked up some good players and we expect them to come in, compete and hopefully contribute."

On whether he stuck with the strategy of picking the best player or they were looking to draft particular positions:
"No, as a whole we took good football players and we wanted competition. We were able to do that. C.J. [Gaddis] ends up being a guy that can play corner and safety. So, we picked up a guy that gives us flexibility. We will probably start him off at safety. So, that should be good competition there."

On whether this draft was more about the future of the team than previous drafts:
"Yeah, I would say that. I didn't feel like we had to concentrate on one single position going in. We have done a nice job in free agency and we signed our own players. I thought we had good depth. More so than good depth, we had good quality depth. You take the best player out there even though you might have a stack at that position and let them jump in there and compete."

On why CB Rashad Barksdale was so intriguing:
"He was very interesting. We liked him. He was a baseball player who played one year of football. He has good size and is fast. He has good skill. He needs work at the position, but he's a good athlete. We thought there was an upside there."

On who found him:
"Our scouts do a heck of a job. I end up sitting and talking to you, but between [general manager] Tom Heckert and [vice president of player personnel] Jason Licht and all the scouts, they do a great job of covering the country. Really, when you look at day two, they are heavily involved with day two, along with the chaos that starts in a few minutes with signing rookie free agents. We have had quite a bit of success with rookie free agents making our football team. That is why it is important to have a solid scouting department."

On whether there was a big disparity between the first and second day draft picks:
"No, things fell the way we thought they were going to fall. I am not saying that we knew who every team was going to pick, but the actual players we had on the board pretty much fell where we thought they would."

On whether the team plans on signing many rookie free agents:
"We have a handful of them we can sign. We just don't have a ton of roster spots."

On whether he is satisfied with the team's draft:
"I feel good about it. But again, I want to see them play at this level. Like I say every year, you don't know the first year exactly what you have. It almost takes a couple of years to see how they mature in the program."

On the process of signing rookie free agents:
"The guys actually start contacting players in the 7th round that might not get drafted. Between calling the agents, setting a price on them and finding room in the rookie pool, you have to be able to manage that. [President] Joe [Banner] and [vice president of football administration] Howie [Roseman] do a nice job of that. From there, it's like the NY stock exchange. It's chaos calling guys. There are a lot of phones and conversations going, trying to bid on these players to get them to come on your team."

On how the team addressed the secondary in the draft:
"I think our secondary is okay. I feel comfortable with it. We were able to sign a couple of guys back at corner and safety. We have decent depth there. It was a matter of adding a couple of guys in there and we thought we would be okay. The starters and rotational guys in there are pretty good."

On whether he anticipates teams being very active leading up to camps:
"I think that could happen. It sure looked like teams were trying to push players more than I have seen in years past. In some of those cases, those players will be released down the road. You will have another run on a group of quality players."

On whether he has spoken to QB Donovan McNabb this weekend:
"I haven't spoken to him."

On whether he thinks Nate Ilaoa is more of a fullback or a halfback:
"He's a halfback. (Jokingly) The fullback went a bit earlier. He is 280 pounds."

On whether trading down and drafting QB Kevin Kolb was something that was discussed leading up to the draft:
"You go over every possible scenario; at least what you think is a possible scenario. We looked at all the different trade options that we might have been presented and went from there. To say that we thought about it, yeah we thought about it. But we do the same thing about moving up. Obviously, you have to also figure out who would be there if you just sat there."

On whether he wanted to come out of this draft with a quarterback:
"I thought it was a decent year for quarterbacks. There were a couple of them there that I liked. Obviously, Kevin I really liked. If he was going to be sitting there, I didn't want to pass up the opportunity. I wanted to take what I considered to be the best player up there. That is what I thought."

On whether he liked him better than QB Brady Quinn:
"I am not going to get into all of that. I didn't have to make that decision. I made the decision on the guy I ended up taking. But, I think that Brady will be a good player down the road."

On how he thinks Kolb picks up new schemes:
"Well, we will find out more down the road. The things we presented him, he handled very well. He seems to be very coachable. He seems to retain the knowledge of the small packages we presented him when we went to visit him. Are there things he needs to work on? Yeah and he will. He's a hard worker. We will see how he does here."

On whether he factors potential fan reaction into the decision to draft a player:
"No, you can't do that. You have to do what you think is right for the team and make sure you keep a good level of quality players on your team. You have to keep supplying your team with that and that is the important part."

On whether he worries about how the locker room will perceive certain picks:
"No, I know that if the young men can play, that is all the players care about. Can this player help us win games, either now or down the road? I am saying that for all positions. I honestly think that is what the players care about."

On second day draft picks having more success than first day picks:
"I think you need that balance. Particularly if you are going to make the cap work. If you have to go out and spend your money on free agency every year, rather than signing your own players, I think you run into trouble. It's very important you draft well, so you have the players to re-sign."

On trading within the division:
"I don't worry about that. As long as we get a good player – now if you make a trade and you don't come out with a good player, it was not a good deal. That they got a good player, I don't worry about that."

On whether the Dallas trade was something discussed early in the week or whether it came up yesterday:
"It was an option and then it came up during the draft."

On the depth chart at linebacker:
"I am just going to put them all out there and let them go. Let's see how it all works out."

On how he feels about this year's draft:
"I feel good about it. The one thing I did when I took some time off was having a beta cam set up. I had film sent to me. I was able to spend the free time that I had, watching film. Normally, in the early morning and evening, I was able to catch quite a bit of film."

On the flexibility the team has at linebacker:
"We have a bunch of different looks. I am going to play the best three players. I really don't care who it is or how it all works out. I just want to make sure I get the three best guys out there."

On whether the team would consider switching to having a left and right outside linebacker as opposed to having a strong and weak side linebacker:
"No, we probably won't do that. We will probably keep it the same."

On whether the team was always high on RB Tony Hunt:
"We didn't want to tell you. [Tom Heckert] can't tell you he wants a player because all of the sudden, someone else takes him. Then your sitting here asking, ‘Why didn't you take Tony Hunt.' He gave you the old smoke screen."

"On how many of the draft picks came here for a pre-draft visit:
"Well, Kolb came in. Hunt came in and Barksdale came in."

On whether Kolb left here today with a copy of the playbook:
"We went over a couple of things. I gave him a few things to think about."

On whether all the rookies will be at the first mini-camp:
"Yeah, they should be. It's the next mini-camp we have to see about."

On whether he believes anyone on the team will have to miss the second mini-camp:
"I don't think they are. I was glancing at that. But, I really don't take that into consideration. You start doing that and you might miss a good player. I will have to go back and look at that. I think most of them will be okay."

On whether he is counting on quarterback Donovan McNabb to work with Kolb:
"I don't think anyone takes someone under their wing necessarily. I don't think that has to happen. Donovan is the type of guy who will answer a question if the kid has one and likewise for the other two. Normally the quarterbacks are a pretty tight knit group. Donovan is not going to be holding secrets back. That is not the way it works. This is not about Donovan vs. Kevin."

On whether Donovan will use this as extra incentive to do well:
"He is so competitive anyway. That is almost saying that he is not trying hard enough to win every game. He does everything possible to be the best he can. This was not used to motivate him, because he is not one of those players. The top players don't need that. Their motivation comes from wanting to be the best."

On whether he will try to get more reps for the rookie QB than he will for the veterans:
"We will see how that goes. I have not gotten into that. Kevin will get his share though."

On how important it is for a rookie to end up in the right system:
"I think it is important. I think it's tough on quarterbacks. That is why that is a tough position to fit. The success rate for drafted quarterbacks in the NFL is not great, as far as making it. There are some factors that go into that; where you go and how you are used. It's tough on a young guy if he comes in and – take the quarterbacks that came out with Donovan. There were a couple situations where the head coaches were not there that long and now he has to learn a new system. That is tough on a guy."


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