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Rashan Gary is 'the engine' who 'drives it'

Key comments from the Packers’ defensive assistants

DL Rashan Gary
DL Rashan Gary

GREEN BAY – The Packers defensive assistant coaches and special teams coordinator met with the media on Thursday. Here's a sampling of their key comments.

Defensive line coach Jason Rebrovich

On the style of play being emphasized:

It's an attack front. If you put the tape on with San Fran, Houston, the Jets – I've been very fortunate in my background being in Buffalo and in Jacksonville and that's really what we did back then, so been fortunate to be around it. But it's about TFLs and sacks. We're going to look to create havoc in the backfield. Every down, we're looking to penetrate and make something big happen. Offensive linemen, not moving so fast laterally, they're going to have to stay on the line of scrimmage a little bit longer with the movements and the ability for us to get in the backfield.

On what it takes to make that happen:

Anytime you're trying to create things in the backfield, you've got to have the whole group swarm to make the play. Can't just be one guy making the tackle. So, you've got to make sure when you are creating a new line of scrimmage, when you are working to get in the backfield, there's other guys that are going to converge. You can't just sit there and watch one guy try and work to make one play.

I said it before, I'll say it again, he's the best leader on our team. I mean, every day he comes to work, every day he's encouraging. When he's out there, he's constantly pulling somebody aside to talk to them. He's the engine. He drives it. It's what he does. So from a mentality standpoint, I don't see any difference (from last year). Now the good thing is, he's had a full year of his injury that he's come back from and we're taking it day by day just like anything else, and hopefully, we're wishing for the best for him this upcoming season.

Linebackers coach/running game coordinator Anthony Campanile

On his coaching style:

I think you've got to love the guys you coach, you've got to love the guys you coach with, and I think that comes back when you do that. My coaching style I would say, I don't know, maybe some people think it's, um, passionate – or whatever you want to say about it. But I just want to be as detailed as I can be and really at the end of the day, you want to make sure that you're getting guys to where they want to go. Sometimes they've got to do the things they don't want to do, to be the player they want to be. So you've got to be honest.

On getting the most out of Quay Walker:

This guy is very dialed in. I'm very excited for him, and I think he's trying to do things the right way. He's a really really talented guy. He really is like a great guy to be around – got the right attitude, is driven and wants to be great. So he's really trying to be very, very detailed in the meeting room, on the field.

Passing game coordinator Derrick Ansley

On Carrington Valentine's rookie year:

When you just watch his POA (point of attack) tape throughout the season, you don't really see a rookie. At least I didn't. Obviously, he has some things he has to clean up and he knows that and we've been working hard attacking those things, but Carrington's wired the right way. He fits right in with that group very well, with Ja and Stokes and Keisean, and Corey Ballentine, Robert Rochelle. All those guys are all wired the right way. Credit to Gute and his staff for identifying those guys and they all have unique skillsets. They're long and they're fast. With that skillset, we have a lot to work with.

On Jaire Alexander in this new system:

I think Jaire Alexander can play in any system. He's a football player; very instinctive, very talented, got cat-like reactionary quickness. He's tough. He's got really good power that can shut it down with those big guys out on the red line. We always talk about being out on the red line, there's no help out there. There's no Wi-Fi service. There's no phone-a-friend. You've got to be able to hold up out there on Doubs, Justin Jefferson, some of those guys and he has that skillset to do it.

Defensive backs coach Ryan Downard

On all the rookie safeties:

We've just got to get these rookies up to speed as fast as possible and they had a great rookie minicamp, but the thing they bring is all three of them are very intelligent and to me, that gives you an advantage to get better faster because you're able to process and learn what's going on schematically. Now, it's how do I get my body in that position and take the individual (drills) to the practice and then hopefully to the game, so it's been fun for me. There's such a gap in the room. There's a veteran (Xavier McKinney), who's a guy that's played really well in this league and then there's some very promising rookies, so bringing those guys together, facilitating leadership, putting X in position to lead that room and then staying all over those rookies, come on now, you've got to meet the standard. So it's been good.

He's got great versatility. When you watch his point of attack, he can play in deep zones. He can play in underneath coverage, as well. He can play in man coverage. He can box fit in the run game. He's got a natural feel to fit the run in the run game and then he can blitz and he was a single-digit missed tackle guy. He has been in his career, which to me, if you get a single-digit guy like that, he's usually a pretty good tackler. Adrian (Amos) was actually that when he was brought in, as well. That was his strong suit, was tackling, but X has all those different things.

He's got a presence about him. Him and Ja are next to each other in the meetings. They compete whether it's in practice in the drills or in the strength and conditioning stuff, and he's leading not only the safety group but the DB group as a whole with Ja. We need that. He helps the culture in the room, too, from the vantage point of toughness and practice habits.

Special teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia

On Anders Carlson's reaction to the three-kicker competition:

I think it's been good. I think it's been good for all three. Body language is a big deal, and how you do react to certain situations. I think the reactions have been good. It's all on film. It's all being graded. They know they're in a competition. I think they can feel that amongst themselves every day in practice.

His response has been (to) work. It was that way during the year last year. He went through some of the ebbs and flows of kicks. And I think he's really been the same way. He's come back a little bit stronger in the offseason than I think he was a year ago. At this point, it's been a good competition.

On the new kickoff rules:

We're not really sure what it's going to look like, right? And ours is a little bit different than the actual XFL because we have these two float players, and we have the ability to have two returners if we want, where the XFL just had one returner and all 10 on both kickoff and kickoff return were on the same line. Now in the return game we have the ability to have two float players, so I think it'll look a little different. Some people think it's going to be exciting. Some think it's going to be dull. I think we all have to wait and see.

I think the exciting thing for us as coaches, and for players that might be at the bottom end of the 53, we didn't lose the play. We still have the play. It's going to be a radical change. It's going to be the same for everyone. It's going to give guys the chance to keep playing kickoff and kickoff return. And we're going to do the best we can to be the best at it that we can.

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