Nick Sirianni

Q. What was your message to the team now that mini-camp is over? How was your assessment of how everything went and what was your message to them? (Chris Franklin)

NICK SIRIANNI: Again, I won’t get into all the messaging we had, but the main message, one of the main messages was come back in the best shape of your life. One of our core values is detail, football IQ and fundamentals, and to play with great detail, you have to be in great shape.

Our guys have done a great job of being in the weight room, of running extra after practice, running during practice, different things, our strength staff and training staff has done a great job of helping these guys get in great shape and now it’s maintaining that so when they come in, it’s not getting in shape, we hit the ground running and we go. There will be natural soreness and things like that as you practice, but it’s being in great physical shape so we can play with great detail.

Q. You talked the other day with working with the young guys on the field and you have so many responsibilities as a head coach. Where does that rank in terms of what you enjoy most about the job? (Bo Wulf)

NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah, when I’m able to have kind of a broad view of everything like a 30,000-foot view, I’m able to give little coaching points to a defensive back of something that I see or to a running back who doesn’t have the ball in the correct arm or anything that has to do with the detail or the overall thing of the play, like a DB went for a play on the sideline yesterday, missed it and gave up a big play as a result of that, and what went through my mind immediately is when I was in high school I would go for a steal in basketball and if I would miss it, it would be an explosive play essentially, and my brother who was the assistant coach on my high school team, I was fortunate enough to play for him, and our head coach, who was a really good coach, but he didn’t get — he’s pretty even keeled, my brother Jay, but he’d get after me pretty good for that.

To be able to do things and see it from a broad view, I love doing that. Coaching — I’m going to have some coaching points for my son in his playoff baseball game tonight. Coaching is why we got into this, to help people become better at their craft. That will help them put in position so they can be better, help teach them detail so they can be better, help them learn situational football so they can be better. I love that. There’s nothing more I like than getting up in front of the team and being able to correct the tape at the end of the day, offense, defense and special teams.

Q. How would you describe the spring that QB Jalen Hurts has had? (Zach Berman)

NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah, I think [QB Jalen Hurts] he’s done a really nice job adapting to some of the different things that we’re doing. Some of the different — there’s different concepts. There’s similar concepts, but in those similar concepts sometimes we’re asking him to read it differently than we have in the past. There’s similar things with the way the routes are being run, and there’s some differences of how we’ve run it in the past, as well, that goes with how the play is supposed to be designed.

I think he’s done a really nice job of handling the things that are similar. I think he’s done a very nice job handling things that are similar but as his job has changed a little bit and done a really nice job of really grinding away to be a master at the offense and all the things that come with it.

So I think there’s a lot that you guys can’t see. You get to see — you’re fortunate to come out to a couple practices during OTAs and then obviously the mini-camp, but there’s so much work that’s happening in here. I’m really pleased with the way he’s led this football team, and he’s just done a nice — like I said, he’s done a really nice job of learning and doing the little differences of what the offense is, and then also his leadership has been — really, you see he’s one of the main leaders on this team, and you see how hard the guys are working. Again, you don’t get to see all that. You don’t get to see it in the weight room and on the practice field all the time, but he’s leading day in and day out, and I’m really happy that he’s the leader he is.

Q. How do you maintain the consistency of that relationship when you’re not dealing with him as much? (Jeff McLane)

NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah, you find time, the same way you find time to carve it out with other guys.

It’s got to be intentional. If connecting is the first core value, I say — that one is a little more important than everything. It’s the same way you do it with everybody. You find the common ground that you have. [QB] Jalen [Hurts] and I both deeply want to win football games. We both deeply care about the culture of this football team. I can tell you those are a lot of the conversations that we have is about the culture, how we lead the culture because we know that the guys are looking to us to do so.

We still have the same common bonds, even though I’m not in the quarterback room all the time.

It’s just being intentional about it on both ends, and that’s how you do that.

But to be fair to your question, that’s a great question because I’m not with him every second of every day like I have been in the past. So it’s about being intentional.

But I know this: When I’m not in there, every single second of every single day, that means I’m around everybody else because my relationship with Jalen [Hurts] is highly important, but my relationship with [DT] Milton Williams is highly important, my relationship with [Defensive Line Coach] Clint Hurtt is highly important, my relationship with [Executive Vice President/General Manager] Howie [Roseman] is highly important, and that’s what you get when you’re not so zeroed in of being with Jalen [Hurts] and the quarterbacks and the offense every single time of every single day.

Q. How do you figure out how to divvy up your time then? (Dave Zangaro)

NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah, I don’t think there’s a playbook for it. I don’t think it’s like, hey, I’m going to spend — naturally I try to do that. I’m like, this is what I’m going to do here, this is what I’m going to do here. But naturally things are going to get you off course.

I like going sitting in a defensive end meeting run by [Defensive Ends/Outside Linebackers Coach] Coach [Jeremiah] Wash [Washburn] with [DE Brandon Graham] BG in there and seeing how connected those guys are. That was awesome that I’m able to see them make a joke and then get back on task and then Wash to give them a good teaching clip and then get back on task. Those have been the things that have been so valuable.

Like I said, there’s not a playbook, but you try to spread it around, go through everything, and then there’s some times where meetings are going on and I’ve got something else to handle, and I really value that, that I’m able to give that time to the rest of the team.

Q. QB Jalen Hurts said he estimated that 95 percent of the offense is new. Is that normal? Is that natural? Seems like a high number to me. (Reuben Frank)

NICK SIRIANNI: Well, kind of like what I said to Zach. I think some of it is — there’s new concepts, obviously. There’s new ways to think about a play, but then with concepts of what we’ve done in the past, he might have a new responsibility within that play. So that’s new to him. Even though we might be running a similar play, his progression may be a little different.

The way a route detail is taught as far as, ‘hey, this has to happen on this play,’ that may be a little different.

There naturally is going to be differences in everybody’s offense. There’s similarities in everybody’s offense across the NFL. There’s differences in everybody’s offense.

But I think that’s the really important thing, that his job responsibility has changed a little bit on some of those things. But again, like I said, I think he’s doing an excellent job of adapting to new schemes, reading the old schemes a little differently, and then mastering the stuff that he’s already done so well.

Q. I know it’s still early in building the offense, but overseeing that with Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore, last year you said staleness was an issue. What do you see in maintaining it fresh through the season and beyond? (Brooks Kubena)

NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah, just different ways to do it. The fact that we’ve been in a similar system for three years and then there’s going to be differences, I think that’s how you stay fresh. You’re constantly trying to evolve as far as what you’re studying. When you study things, usually, and you’re a staff that’s together again, you have to go outside and study. Well, when we’ve studied things this year, yes, we’ve went outside into different places to study things and talked to different coaches, but we’re able to — Kellen naturally is able to learn some things about the way we did it before, I am able to learn some things the way Kellen — that’s major growth, when you’re in there — you’ve got the guy who, you know, Kellen being responsible for that, you get to grow together and ask those questions that sometimes quite frankly you don’t have that opportunity. You might have a couple days at a place or they come in here. But we’re together all the time.

That’s been good. Again, just pleased with the progression of the offense and where we are, and I know we’re asking a lot about the offense. I’m really pleased with what the defense is doing. I thought they did some really good things, were good on their drops. Man, they worked so hard over – [Defensive Coordinator] Vic [Fangio] had them over and over and over again matching routes, over and over and over matching routes. It showed up during our 7-on-7 drills in the way they were there and the way they were in position to match things.

Again, pleased with the direction we’re in, we’re going. By no means is that a finished product. We haven’t even put pads on. The guys need to come back in the best shape of their lives, and we got to have a great training camp leading up to our first game.

Q. Do you miss the micro part at all? and do you think the macro part maybe leads – (Bob Brookover)

NICK SIRIANNI: I think I still have both parts of that. There are still some micro parts that I have that I’m — I get to go to a receiver meeting and coach up a receiver meeting or whatever it is. And [Wide Receiver Coach] Aaron [Moorehead] does an unbelievable job. Or grab a receiver on the side and ‘hey, hey, look how we’re doing this.’ You’re still coaching football, or the story that I got to tell one of the defensive backs the other day or the ball security.

But I do see how much value there is in looking at it with a 30,000-foot view of everything.

Again, we’ll just keep going and keep getting better as a football team. I’ll keep getting better at what I’m doing, they’ll keep getting better at what they’re doing, our coaches will keep getting better at what they’re doing, and we’re just trying to get better every single day.

Q. Defensively in the past you’ve told us there’s certain things that you need. Has that changed at all with Defensive Coordinator Vic Fangio because he’s got so much experience? (John McMullen)

NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah, there’s still things — I feel just in a great spot. I’m so pleased with, again, everything with how we’re going through on defense right now. We haven’t had the pads on yet, and that’s the next step. But there’s still things that you have, you’re like, ‘hey, this is the way I see this,’ whether that’s offense, defense or special teams, and those are discussions that you have to have as a staff.

But Vic has so much experience of doing this. He’s done this at a high level for a very long time. I’m really happy he’s our defensive coordinator.

Q. Yesterday DE Brandon Graham spoke very highly about the way the communication has been so far in this off-season. He indicated that last season things weren’t on the same page at times, and it really showed in that last game. Additionally, RB Kenneth Gainwell went on a podcast recently, and when asked about the collapse at the end, he talked about how connectivity was an issue. He indicated connectivity was an issue, which is a core value. What are you noticing between the way things were last season to now in terms of those aspects? (Dave Uram)

NICK SIRIANNI: I think we all understand how important — it’s so important — they’re all in this room because they have talent. All our players in this room have talent. But the best teams have something else. They have something else, and it’s the culture. It’s the things that — it’s your daily habits of being connected, having accountability, being extremely detailed, being tough, that we’re trying to drop in the bucket over and over again.

I think sometimes you can lose sight of that, of like, ‘hey, we’re not just going to win games because we’re talented.’ It takes everything.

That’s what — we know we have the right pieces – [Executive Vice President/General Manager] Howie [Roseman] has done an unbelievable job of putting this team together and we have the right pieces in here. I’m excited to go to training camp with these 90 guys and these coaches and this front office and this support staff.

But at the end of the day, it’s never just about the most talented– not in football. It’s never about, in football, the most talented team wins. It’s not in football.

We all realize that. We all realize that, I think, and it’s just about going to work every single day, making ourselves better coaches and better players every day, but doing that and also making ourselves to have the best culture every single day.

That, again, is just your daily habits of what we practice there. So, every time that these guys are connecting in multiple different ways, and I’m so happy about that, they’re holding each other accountable, they’re holding themselves accountable. They’re paying attention to the detail. That’s great. That’s great, but that was only OTAs. That was only mini-camp.

Again, it’s your daily habits that you’re continuously doing that, and that’s what we’re trying to do, and that’s what we feel like we’re not going to take advantage of — we’re going to make sure we stay committed to all those things because we know at the end of the day it’s not just the most talented team that wins, it’s the best teams, it’s the best culture that wins.