Jack Del Rio – Photo by: Getty Images
Oakland head coach Jack Del Rio joined the Tampa Bay media on a conference call Wednesday morning and spoke on a number of subjects including his time coaching with Dirk Koetter and Mike Smith. Below is a transcript from the conference call.
(On what factors he attributes to having success on the road)
“I think our football team has been very purposeful coming out. We’ve got a process and they’ve adhered to the process. They’ve embraced it and really focused on just playing good football regardless of the circumstances, regardless of the weather, regardless of the time of day – just to get excited to get out and play good football whenever they put the ball down for us and we tee it up and kick off.”
(On the benefits and difficulties spending the week at the IMG Academy in Bradenton)
“For us, we’re just focusing on trying to keep it as normal as possible for the guys, for the coaches, for the players. We have a tremendous support staff that is providing everything we need, so that we can go about just a typical game week of preparation. So, all of our focus is there. Our workouts, our meetings, the structure, what we eat, everything is basically kind of staying within the normal flow of a game week.”
(On what key factors he believes has led to success in the eastern time zone coming from the west coast)
“For us, it’s just a matter of recognizing that good football teams are going to play well regardless of the circumstances, so we don’t get caught up in the circumstances as much as we do in the preparation and understanding the talent that this team has and the design, the coaches, the structure, the things that we need to do to prepare to play well.”
(On what he sees out of some of his former coaching staff in head coach Dirk Koetter and defensive coordinator Mike Smith)
“It’s a good group of guys. We’ve obviously spent a lot of time together, working together. They’re good men, good coaches and I’m happy for their success.”
(On enjoying this football season as head coach of the Oakland Raiders as well as father to the starting quarterback for the University of Florida)
“Yes,I will get a chance to see my son on Saturday and it’s fortunate that we’re here. I think for us, we both feel very blessed to be a part of two great organizations and I know he’s very happy to be the quarterback for the Gators. He’s working hard on his education, he’s working hard on doing all he can to help his team win. I’m proud of our guys here with the Raiders and the work we’re putting in and the process that we go through each week. So, just feeling very blessed right now and feeling like there’s a lot of work in front of us and just kind of continuing to grind and do the things that need to be done for the good of this team.”
(On how he knew Dirk Koetter was the right choice for offensive coordinator when he was Jacksonville’s head coach)
“I think Dirk’s very organized, a detailed guy. Good teacher, good relationship with the players. I just felt like Dirk was a really good fit at the time and I think he proved that he was with the product that we put out there. Our guys were always very well-prepared and I thought Dirk was an excellent teacher.”
(On if he knew Koetter would be an NFL head coach one day)
“Yeah, I did. Just like Mike Smith, both coordinators – as coordinators, I think you should expect that when you do well with your groups – and that’s the idea, to do well with your groups – and when you do, that some pint you’re going to get an opportunity to lead your own football team. So both of those guys – Mike Smith and Dirk were there with us in Jacksonville and I’m proud to see both of them go on and get those opportunities.”
(On a number of former Jacksonville players and coaches currently being with Tampa Bay)
“I think we had almost an all-star staff there if you really look at it. We had Mike Shula, Dirk Koetter, Todd Monken, Mike Tice, Mike Smith, Mark Duffner, we had a list of really good coaches – Joe DeCamillis, then later Nate Kazcor, who’s now [Tampa Bay’s] special teams coordinator. So a lot of really good coaches were in that building. We knew that, we knew as a staff that we were doing everything we could to help that team be its best and that’s what each staff should do. So, yeah I take great pride in knowing that we did a real solid job then and I’m really happy for the guys because they worked hard and they are good people and good coaches and I’m happy for them to get opportunities elsewhere now.”
(On what running back Latavius Murray means to Oakland’s offense)
“He’s a big back and he’s one of our better players, so certainly you want your players when they’re healthy, able to go, you want to be able to utilize him. So getting him back definitely gave us a shot in the arm.”
(On where Oakland’s defense needs to improve)
“I think for us, just keep playing. We’ve got a good group of guys that care, I feel like we’ll continue to improve as we go throughout the season. We want to build on the fact that we are taking the football away, we’re playing good on third down and obviously those are two keys to winning games. Winning is what we’re after and as we go through the year we want to continue to improve, so we know there’s a lot of work yet in front of us.”
(On what’s harder for him: coaching or watching his son, Luke, play quarterback at the University of Florida)
“Hand down, watching him play. I think playing in this league and playing in this league, that part has come a lot easier than being in the stands and being a dad. I think other dads and moms out there can share that opinion that the hardest thing you do is watching your kid and watching your kid play, without question.”
(On if Luke was interested in football at a young age)
“Yeah, he’s definitely a gym rat. I think it grew as he grew in age. I think once he got into high school, he became pretty serious about pursuing a career.”
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at [email protected]
Wow,that was a very impressive coaching staff .I hope to have coach Smith around for a few more years but I personally think he is a damn good head coach and will get another shot.Atlanta was dumb to let him go,he done a good job but injures killed his team the year they fired him.
Zach,I don’t like the way the website is set up now.the old website looked much better,what the hell are you guys smoking?need to put it down!!this new website style sucks.
Sorry,meant Mark or whoever changed the site(I know it’s been like this a few months)but it sucks and the person responsible for the change should be drug tested and slapped
Seriously? Shut up and move on. It’s the same content, figure it out.
Brobear, go play with your boyfriend!
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