What Dan Quinn had to say on Sunday 

Opening Statement:
“It was great to be back on the field today. We had corrections that we spoke to you guys about on a conference call on Friday. We went back through and had a walk-through Friday night. The players had off yesterday and we wanted to come back out and go for it today. We had a big red zone emphasis. We had a two minute at the end of the half. We wanted to go right back to those situations. Our goals for training camp are to be the best attacking team. That’s situation ball. Those were the things that we really tried to dial in today. It was good to get a couple of guys back and practicing who didn’t participate in the game. That was Jack Crawford, Julio Jones, and Taylor Gabriel, to name a few. It was good to get them back in the mix today. I’m glad to open it up to questions as we’re getting towards the end of our camp.”

On Devonta Freeman leaving practice early:
“I didn’t think he was going to come back. He had some heat stuff that he dealt with from the first practice and then again today. I didn’t get a chance to go in and see him yet, but I’ll find out.”

On Jermaine Grace’s injury and Martin Ifedi’s absence from practice:
“Ifedi’s foot has been bothering him. We’re probably going to hold him this week and we will take a better look after Pittsburgh. We’ll let his ankle settle down. It’s not really coming around as fast as he had hoped. Grace did a rehab run today. He had a strain of a hamstring and we’re hopeful he is going to return. He’s been putting the work in for sure.”

On how pleased he is with Sharrod Neasman’s progress after his position switch:
“It helped a lot for him to find one spot to play. With Neasman, he played a little bit of free safety and strong safety last year. This spring we really ironed it out where we found his role covering tight ends, playing in the box, playing physical and the role on teams. Could he start on punt and kickoff returns? We want to take a strong look at that. Going in he just jumped in with the first group the other night. He’s got a whole year in the system now and through the OTAs. He’s another player going from one year to two years who should take a big jump. We expect that to happen.”

On if he thought Neasman looked out of place:
“I didn’t. The communication part was on point. Playing in coverage looked on point. We’re excited. We expected that from him. He’s put the work in. We’re hopeful to see him take a big jump.”

On having Julio Jones back to participate in 11 on 11:
“It was great for us, and for the team to have Jones back in. He really put the work in on the rehab front as well. He looked fast. He looked explosive. I guess he was probably somewhere in the six to eight. We’ll go a few more than that. The way, style, and intensity that he practices with, it was good to have him back in the mix today.”

On if Wes Schweitzer will start at right guard in the next preseason game:
“I haven’t spoken to Chris Morgan about that yet. I think that’s something that is going to be worth discussing as we get into Wednesday and Thursday. I really want to focus back into camp now. The game is pretty far away from our team’s thinking right now, and the coaches as well. I want them to finish this block and then say to each of the guys ‘What’s one or two things you can get better at?’ Then as we get into Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of next week, I’ll be more comfortable to say who will get the first reps. As it goes right now, I want us to get right back into the grind of it.”

On how he evaluated the right guards going up against Ndamukong Suh:
“That’s really part of the evaluation because we know the talent that he plays with and the intensity that he plays with. That’s the style of player you’re going to have to play against. Right off the bat, he’s gotten some pretty good work against a couple of pretty good defensive tackles here on our own team. Guys by the number 97 and 92. That’s their job. The battle of going up against one another. I wasn’t surprised to see them play well, but those are the kind of matchups that you really like as a coach like ‘Okay, we’re really going to find out some information’. I was pleased with the first night knowing the caliber of Suh.”

On his impression of Ra’Shede Hageman so far:
“I really felt it in the spring where his play really spiked. I think you’ve heard us use the term before, where the game slows down for you a little bit. I think that’s happening with him. Some of the blocks are familiar and the calls are familiar where he is able to be his best self. I’m very encouraged by him so far. He can move like a lighter player, but he plays at 320 pounds. He has the movement of a much smaller, lighter guy. We’re real encouraged by his camp. He’s definitely somebody that’s going up, and I don’t want to say a pleasant surprise, but I think you saw it coming with his intent and his urgency to play. That part has been good.”

On what he will tell the players before their next preseason game:
“We’re not there yet for the preseason. The message coming back today was let’s go right back into camp mode. What were the things that you specifically wanted to get better at? That’s going to happen some, especially with the first year players. The emotion of playing in your first NFL game, like ‘I thought about this time. I thought about this moment’. It’s a really big moment, so we wanted to recognize it and some played like they were really tight. It’s a good learning experience. I’d much rather that happen now, then in the first game to say ‘It’s the first game of the regular season, I got to really step it up’. Man, you got to play like you can. With some of them, I felt that they felt uptight. We had some fouls that weren’t the best. I’m expecting some of those guys to make a big jump. We went through it and we met individually with a lot of them to say ‘Let’s make sure your style as a ball player really shines through’. It won’t be too much scheme wise, but today and tomorrow is all about us and our focus. Then as we get closer to the preseason, we’ll talk about it again.”
On how Devonta Freeman handled himself throughout the contract negotiations:
“He’s got some great role models on his own team that have been through some of these situations before with contracts, and one’s locker is right next to his. He’s able to talk to him on an everyday basis about how he stayed the course while the process worked out. It’s easier said than done. Based on the field, on the grass, that’s home to Devonta Freeman. That spot on the field, that’s him. He’s such a competitor that he wanted to play the whole game the other night. I said, ‘Good idea, but no’. You’ve got some other guys we are trying to take a look at as well. So, that tells you his mindset and where he’s at. It was fun for him to have kids that were at his camp on the sideline before the game. The NFL connection with youth football is strong because the players remember being that guy. That’s why when fans come here and sit on the hill as kids, I remember as a kid, going to the Giants training camp practices and they remember being that youth football player. We always enjoy seeing the youth guys on the sideline. One guy came up to me who looked like a nose tackle and said, ‘I’m a nose tackle’. I said, ‘Yeah, I already knew that. We’ll be back for you.’ Those guys on that sideline were saying ‘There’s so and so’. The difference between my day of seeing that and theirs is that they all pulled out their phones and were taking pictures on the sideline at eight and nine years old. He handled himself like a champ all the way through the whole process.”

On what he tries to instill in the linebackers like De’Vondre Campbell:
“The role of teacher is one I really embrace here. It’s my job to not only help organize the coaches and throw a great practice, but if there’s some teaching that can get done and for me, especially with offensive line, defensive line, and linebackers, I’ll try to make as much time for those players individually as I can. Sometimes they need that one-on-one instruction that’s real short and real to the point right after something happens as opposed to waiting an hour or an hour and a half for the film. Sometimes you need the feedback right away. He’s really going for it. I’m not just going to put it on his eye surgery because that was just for the catches. His physicality, his urgency, and his voice amongst his teammates, we feel that coming alive.”

On how pleased he is with the second year players taking on a leadership role:
“I’m pleased with that. You can lead from any level, so you don’t have to wait until you’re a long standing veteran in this system. Building trust takes time, so you can’t do it your first year. It doesn’t take much time to lose that trust and it takes time to build that trust. In their year and a half with the program, they’ve shown that we can trust them and count on them to their teammates. So, having that trust and taking on a leadership role, like if Keanu Neal, Deion Jones, Brian [Poole], and Austin Hooper say they’re going to do something, it’s going to get done. So, they don’t have to wait until later to lead. The guys that are coming into year one are recognizing that a guy is only in his second year and has a voice on this team. It’s good also for players like Matt Schaub who is a leader on this team and Matt Ryan to recognize that there are some young guys who have leadership abilities too because they trust them. You don’t have to be a long standing veteran to lead. Not everybody leads in the same spot. Some are more on the field, some are in the weight room, and some are in the classroom. Whatever is your way to lead, we want that part of yourself to come out and be authentic. If you’re not “Rah-rah” then don’t be that. That’s not Keanu’s style, for those of you who know him. He’s a serious minded, strong guy and he doesn’t play and people know that. It would feel unusual for him to take on a different role. For Deion Jones, he’s louder and looser, that’s more accustomed to him. He wasn’t able to do that as a first year player. When I go back and see maybe the first half of the season, he was more rigid. When he made a play, he didn’t even celebrate with the guys, he just did his job. Now you see the communication take place all along. There will be some other ones coming up through. We want to identify those players early who have leadership traits. Grady Jarrett is one that has that. I knew from his Clemson days that he had leadership opportunities. As much as you want it to happen your first year, it just doesn’t go that way because you haven’t earned that amongst your teammates.”

On a possible conversation with the players about kneeling during the national anthem:
“Everything with us we will try to discuss as a team. I’m sure that was the case with Marshawn Lynch, he’s a fantastic teammate. I’m sure that was one that he discussed with their guys too, knowing the type of competitor he is and teammate he is. That’ll be something we do for sure.”

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