Q&A with Falcons cornerback Isaiah Oliver

081920 Flowery Branch: Atlanta Falcons cornerback Isaiah Oliver loosens up during training camp on Wednesday, August 19, 2020 in Flowery Branch.    Curtis Compton ccompton@ajc.com

Credit: Curtis Compton

Credit: Curtis Compton

081920 Flowery Branch: Atlanta Falcons cornerback Isaiah Oliver loosens up during training camp on Wednesday, August 19, 2020 in Flowery Branch. Curtis Compton ccompton@ajc.com

Here’s what Falcons cornerback Isaiah Oliver had to say to the Atlanta media during a virtual call Thursday:

On where he fits in the defense: “I feel like it’s going to be a lot of different spots. Trying out a lot of different spots right now. We haven’t really made that decision yet … especially in this system with (defensive coordinator Dean) Pees, there are a lot of different things that he likes to do. I can see myself being in a lot of different positions out there on the field. So, I’m excited about it and look forward to what that is.”

On the most interesting thing he did this offseason: “I got engaged. That’s it. I’ll be getting married in July. I’m excited about that.”

On his offseason and the new coaches liking tape of him as a nickel back: “It’s been really good. The offseason went well. The training and everything. I was able to get into a good routine, get in a good regimen. So, I felt really, really good about my offseason. Coming into the OTAs, playing a lot of nickel last year so again that’s a spot (where) I feel comfortable. Especially, getting this offseason doing it, I think that will have a big benefit going into this season. I’m looking forward to that.”

On any talk about playing some safety: “Right now, it’s just a little bit of everything. I don’t think anything has been solidified. I think just during this time in OTAs it’s really more about learning the system, understanding the system, the way coach Pees wants it to be ran and then in training camp we’ll be kind of the time to determine positions, depth chart and everything like that.”

On if he has a preference whether he’d like to play, outside or at nickel: “I like both. So, kind of whatever fits best within the team I’m all for it. Whether that be inside or outside. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter to me.”

On the challenges of playing nickel: “I’ve always been a guy that’s able to understand the defense pretty well. So, knowing where to be and when to be there. And knowing where the other guys are supposed to be, that’s kind of the biggest thing that differs from playing nickel and playing corner. You (must) have a better understanding of the entire defense. Once you’re able to do that, it can be pretty simple. You can just play football after that.”

On working with the new safeties: “It’s been great. All of the guys are really smart so that makes it just 10 times easier. Both guys (Duron Harmon and Eric Harris) have played a lot of football, been in a lot different of situations. Played in a lot of games. So, they bring a very unique knowledge to the team. It’s great that they are here. Lucky to have them. Looking forward to getting out on the field and playing ball with them.”

On learning through virtual meetings: “It’s definitely harder over the (virtual) meeting and things like that. But the biggest thing is just learning the verbiage. That can be the most difficult part about it. The scheme for the most part can be pretty similar to stuff that you’ve ran in the past in the NFL or even college. … Schemes start to run into each other. Definitely learning the verbiage has been the most difficult thing. I think we’ve done a pretty good job defensively as a whole. Going through these practices we’ve got a pretty good grasp of it.”

On his interactions with the younger players: “Definitely, we have a younger DB group. A younger DB (meeting) room for sure. Definitely, (I’m) stepping more into that veteran, leader role. I’ve been embracing that challenge. The young guys have been great. All of them are attentive, smart guys who are ready to work. When you have guys like that, it’s easy to lead guys like that.”

On if the social justice committee plans to address the new Georgia voting laws: “I definitely know that once the season starts, all of that stuff kicks up. I do believe some stuff has been happening, but a lot of it has been over (virtual) meetings as far as I’m aware.”

On if the defense can improve after last season’s showing: “I definitely think we have the right group of guys to do it. The coaches to do it. Just everyone in the building. We are focused. We have the same goals. So, I’m excited about it and I look forward to it.”

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