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LA Rams transcripts: Sean McVay, Aaron Donald, and Marcus Peters

When these men talk, you listen.

NFL: Super Bowl LIII-Los Angeles Rams Press Conference Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Head Coach Sean McVay – Media Availability – July 28, 2019

(On the second day of training camp)

“It was good. I think like anything else, there’s some good and some bad, which is to be expected this early. I love the way the guys are competing. I can’t wait to look at this tape, get it cleaned up and then we’ll see how we come out tomorrow going three consecutive days. Really, this four-day stretch represents our longest stretch that we’ll go. It’s a good test, especially coming right out of the gate doing it. But I think it’s necessary. Getting a lot of information and reps, which is exactly what you want this time of year.”

(On if today was a scheduled day off for RB Todd Gurley II)

“It was. That was part of the plan. He’s feeling good. He took part in some of the stuff that we did this morning. He’ll be back out here tomorrow.”

(On the plan for Gurley throughout camp)

“For the first four days it will be (an every other day schedule). Really, the first four days represents the only regularity that we have in camp because we’re practicing against the (Los Angeles) Chargers on staggered days. Then, we break camp the following day after the second practice against the Chargers. Then go up to Napa, and then we’re going to Hawaii as well. There’s a lot of different things, but, really, the first four days, that was part of the plan and then we’ll see where we’re at after that.”

(On how DT Aaron Donald has looked through the first two practices)

“You’ve been watching? He looks pretty good. Like I said, I think the biggest thing is just the way that he affects his teammates. Having him here -- what that represents. When he turns it up, you see why the production is what it is and why he’s the special player that he is. It’s just been great having him out here. The best part about Aaron is, he’s going to look at himself, he’s going to be critical and he’s come out tomorrow expecting to improve on some of the things he did today.”

(On what he’s seen from the backup running backs through the first two days of practice)

“(RB) Malcolm Brown is a great player. We’ve always felt that Malcolm Brown is a starting caliber back. When we lost him last year against Detroit, that was a huge loss for us because he does so many valuable things for us. Special teams, and then, really, for the same reasons that Todd (Gurley II) plays so many snaps, we feel like Malcolm has the capability to play on all three downs. It gives us a chance to see a lot of those backs. (RB) Darrell Henderson (Jr.), (RB) John Kelly has done some good stuff, (RB) Justin Davis. It’s a good chance for those guys, but it’s just great having Malcolm back healthy. He had a good offseason and he’s started off camp the right way.”

(On LB Clay Matthews)

“He’s done a great job. I thought he had a great offseason and I think immediately you see the veteran presence that he has – the versatility. He’s got great movement. He looks really healthy, he’s looking good. I think he feels good and we want to make sure that we keep him that way, feeling good going into the Carolina (Panthers) game. We’re certainly glad to have Clay here and he’s been outstanding so far.”

(On why he stopped practice for a team meeting)

“There’s some things we want to be smart about how we practice. The thing that’s been refreshing about these guys is always done whatever we ask and I couldn’t be more appreciative of that. We got a chance to talk about a couple things and they responded the right way, finished it off and then we got some of our younger guys some good work at the end there.”

(On if guys were being too aggressive or playing beyond the whistle)

“It wasn’t even necessarily aggressive, it was more of just being smart – especially when we don’t have the pads on. We talk about some of the things with the practice etiquette and part of being a pro is learning how to practice and still be able to go full speed, but minimize some of the risk for injury. We just want to make sure we’re always aware of that and that’s really what we talked about.”

(On CB Aqib Talib)

“He’s a great competitor. I think when you see the success he’s had over his career, it’s because he brings it. When he turns it up, you see why he’s been an All-Pro player. He played at such a high level for such a long time. He’s such a smart, instinctual player. I love having him out here, love picking his brain. He sees the game so well. I think guys like him, (S Eric) Weddle, (CB) Marcus (Peters) and (CB) Nickell (Robey-Coleman). (S) John Johnson (III) over with the experience he’s accumulated now in the first couple years of his career. They’re great for (QB) Jared (Goff) to be able to work against. Those tough coverage principles and I love having Aqib out here competing like that.”

(On what Defensive Line Coach Eric Henderson brings to the table)

“I think it’s just that. He’s done an excellent job implementing some different things where we’ve added a couple things that we can do specific to the situation with some personnel groupings – moving guys around. I just think it’s a guy that’s come in here, done a great job working in collaboration with (Assistant Defensive Line) Coach (Thad) Bogardus and (Outside Linebackers) Coach (Chris) Shula and they’ve done an outstanding job with our front.”

(On what he envisions S Taylor Rapp’s role looking like and what he’s seen so far)

“I think when you look at his career in college, he was a really versatile player. He did a great job playing in the box as a blitzer. Great instincts, especially in those traffic situations. He can definitely play in the post – he’s got good ball skills. I think that’s to be determined. I think just day after day, he’s going to continue to carve out a role for himself. It’s still so early in camp. We’re two practices in and we’ve got a long way to go. He’s a guy that had a great college career, did a lot of good things through the offseason program and I think once we get some more work and some more practices, we’ll have a better feel for where he’s at. But I think he’s going to get more comfortable every single day.”

(On keys to having a successful relationship between a quarterback and center)

“I think it’s like anything else. The better you get to know each other, the better you can communicate, the better you’re able to adapt and adjust to the different situations that come up. I think (QB) Jared (Goff) and (C) Brian (Allen) seem to have a really good rapport. The best part about it is those things happen organically because they enjoy each other, and I think there’s a mutual respect that exists. We’ve been really pleased with that. You look at what a great job (former Rams center) John Sullivan did for us the last couple of years – how smart he was. For Brian to be able to see the way John led and the way that he interacted with Jared I think is such a great example of what it looks like to do it right. Brian’s one of those guys that we’re hopeful will take those steps.”

DT Aaron Donald – Media Availability – July 28, 2019

(On being back at training camp)

“It’s good to be back working with the guys, grinding and here with coaches. You know, getting better. So, it feels good.”

(On how training camp has changed since 2016)

“It wasn’t like this. It wasn’t this many fans here and things like that. But it’s good for the fans to be here cheering, making noise, we feed off that and it feels like a little gameday. Just being here, competing, and giving the fans something to watch.”

(On what he hopes to gain from training camp)

“Well I won it because I work. You know just working. But being here and getting myself in football shape and working my moves, hopefully it won’t take me four games to get going this year. I think it’s going to be a plus for me getting here, getting going right away. If anything, I should be better.”

(On if he was excited to bring his family)

“Well for sure. My daughter is six. She doesn’t remember the last time she was at camp, and my son has never seen camp. So, to have them being around and watching me play football and them getting to run around the field these are the types of memories that last forever. So, having them here with me and, like I said, being here back with the guys, competing, it’s a good feeling.”

(On the reception he received from fans)

“A lot of yelling and a lot of noise, I’m like, ‘hey, that’s a lot of love.’ But I appreciate it. And getting to see them, talk to a couple fans, I gave a kid a hug and he was crying, that was pretty cool. Just to know a lot of people look up to you, a lot of kids look up to you. So, to be able to see them and shake their hand and them seeing me in person is just pretty cool.”

(On if he holds back going against his own offense)

“No, we are working. And I’m trying to get myself better and me slowing down isn’t going to get myself better, so I’m just working. Like I said, trying to get myself better. Work my moves, work my techniques. Listen to what (Defensive line coach Eric) Coach ‘Henny’s’ (Henderson) teaching me, the new stuff he’s teaching me. The new D-line coach is great so I’m embracing that and just learning and trying to put that into my practice and into my games.”

(On the possibility of winning defensive player of the year)

“I’m just playing football. If it happens, it happens. My main goal is trying to win the Super Bowl so I’m trying to give everything I can to make myself a better football player so that I can do more so that we can win.”

(On how much Coach Henderson benefited him)

“A lot. OTA, just the type of drills, the techniques he’s teaching us now. He knows football. He’s a young coach that’s hungry, that loves football, that loves teaching football. He’s breaking down film, he broke down film and he’s coaching me so that’s what I like the most. He’s telling me my weaknesses and things I need to clean up and trying to teach me things that I can do better and work better that can help my game. When you’ve got a coach like that, you just sit and listen and you try to keep what you’ve been doing but also add what he’s trying to teach me and make me that much better.”

(On if Coach Henderson was the reason he wanted to be in OTA’s)

“100 percent. He’s definitely a guy, once I saw the drills, after I got to talk to him and get to pick his brain a little bit. He’s a big reason why I wanted to continue to learn and I felt like what he was teaching me could benefit me and help me a whole lot as far as improving my game. It’s like I always say I want to get better, and that’s what I’ve got to do. Listen to coach and work it.”

(On the young guys on the defensive line, specifically DT Greg Gaines)

“First two days he’s been solid. A big guy, been playing great run tech, pushing the pocket great. He’s definitely showing up. You know, coach kind of moved him over with us a little bit. He got a little rush with us. He’s getting better and grinding. So hopefully he keeps getting better and better. There’s still a lot more of him.”

(On his plan in regards to workload during camp)

“We’re still talking, but I’m pretty sure I’m going to work. But they want to make sure that I’m still fresh and I’m healthy. That’s the main goal. It’s to get all the great work you want to get, but at the same time make sure your body is still fresh so that come game time you’re ready to go. I’m pretty sure we have a nice game plan. We’ll see what’s going to go on. I’m going to trust the process and hopefully my body stays healthy.”

(On helping the young offensive linemen get ready for Week 1)

“Like I said, we’re here to compete. My job would be trying to get myself better, at the same time get them better. They’re trying to get me better. If I can do that. If I can beat them on the play, they can learn from it and vice versa. So, we’re just going to keep going at it and hopefully we get better together.”

(On what he missed the most and what he missed the least from training camp)

“My body was in great shape. No aches, no pains, no nothing, but it’s good to be out here with the guys. Just being here, being an older guy, getting to lead the younger guys. Them watching me work and me pushing them just saying little things like that. But just being here with the guys, that’s what you miss, the grind. This is where it all starts and where it all happens. So, me being here now from the start to the finish is a big plus.”

CB Marcus Peters – Media Availability – July 28, 2019

(On how he feels about his second training camp with the Rams)

“It feels comfortable. It feels good to be back out here. Great to be here. Year two with the Rams.”

(On how he spent his offseason)

“I was busy. Giving back to the people, just hanging out. Not too much.”

(On what S Eric Weddle brings to the team and how he helps him)

“His leadership. Just the way that he’s really a coach on the field, the way that he’s disguising and giving you opportunities to make plays just based off his disguise, it’s amazing to have him here. It’s going to be wonderful. Good to have him here.”

(On how he feels about his contract extension)

“I’m just here to play football, the rest of that stuff will take care of when it’s time. I feel that you just keep coming and you do what you need to do and everything will get taken care of man. We’ve got bigger goals, really. All that other stuff will take care of itself.”

(On how he has dealt with the Super Bowl in the offseason and how he is moving on)

“I think it makes me … I mean I’m just hungry. It’s just good to be back. That’s what I think is going to make us better as a whole team with us just coming back with as many guys as we got coming back and we got the extra additions. I think it just makes us that much more hungry. We see exactly where we can be at if we just put our focus into getting better every day. Put the hard work in and it will pay off for us.”

(On how the DB group challenges themselves with veteran leadership like S Eric Weddle and CB Aqib Talib)

“Just to get better each and every day. I think for just me and (S) John (Johnson III), a bit younger than those two. They’ve played a lot of football. So, just as much as I did last year, I soaked up as much game that I could from (CB) Aqib (Talib) and just having (S) Eric (Weddle) here this year for John, he just helps so much with his game. It’s trickling down from everybody. Eric is able to do so much with just his play, and it allows for us to do so much with our play. It’s working so good already. I think it’s going to be crazy.”

(On WR Robert Woods getting more recognition as a great receiver)

“He should have been getting it. ‘Woody’ (WR Robert Woods) caught 100 balls at each year at (University of Southern California) SC I think, something like that. He was doing numbers, so you’ve got to give the man respect.”

(On what makes Woods so good)

“He’s got everything and he’s consistent at it. If you need him to go up and get a certain block, if he needs to do a jet sweep – he got it. You need him to catch the ball down field and he’s got the speed to do it. He’s got pretty much everything in his game.”