Q. Shane, when you take over an offense, do you have to kind of unteach habits from the previous staff’s offensive play calling? (Mike Kaye)
Shane Steichen: I don’t think so. I think really, more so than anything, we’re just adapting to what we do offensively, you know, and we just teach the guys how we want to run it and from a technique and fundamental standpoint.
I think that’s the biggest thing and it starts in the meetings and then it carries over to the practice field.
Q. When you have coaches like Run Game Coordinator/Offensive Line Coach Jeff Stoutland and Wide Receivers Coach Aaron Moorehead sticking around, is it a bit of an adjustment to kind of get them to focus on the way you guys call plays? (Mike Kaye)
Shane Steichen: You know, both of those guys have been great. Those guys are great coaches and teachers and they’ve adapted to the way we want to do things and they do a hell of a job doing it.
Q. Falcons defensive coordinator Dean Pees in the past has used a lot of pressure from different angles and is going to make the running backs play a bigger role when it comes to run blocking. How have you seen them progress from the start of training camp to where they are today? (Chris Franklin)
Shane Steichen: They’ve done a great job. [Eagles Running Backs/Assistant Head Coach] Jemal [Singleton], our running back coach, has done a heck of a job. And, obviously, we have a lot of time we go over pressures, pressure meetings. We do that every day, we do that at practice, walk-throughs, reps. The more reps we get at those and the different looks we get, the better we’re getting. So, it’s been good.
Q. How much did you know about WR Quez Watkins before he got here? (Dave Zangaro)
Shane Steichen: I didn’t know a lot. I know he made a huge play against Arizona the year before I got here on the screen. But what he’s been able to do in training camp, it’s been exciting. So, looking forward to him this season playing.
Q. What’s your philosophy in terms of being on the field versus the booth as an offensive coordinator? (Zach Berman)
Shane Steichen: That’s a good question. I’ve thought a lot about going up. Last year, we didn’t have a preseason and I stayed down.
I think it’s a preference for each guy. I was down as a quarterback coach and so I stayed down as the coordinator to call it.
And I think down there, when you’re talking to the guys, you get a feel for how they’re feeling on the sidelines and the momentum of the game. I think it’s big to be down there to talk to the guys. So, I like being down.
Q. So is there a guy, then, who is sort of your eyes up top? (Bo Wulf)
Shane Steichen: Yeah, we got a couple coaches up there. A few. So, they do a good job up there.
Q. What are some challenges the Falcons’ defense presents at different levels? (Ed Kracz)
Shane Steichen: Yeah, no, that’s a good question. Obviously, [Falcons Defensive Coordinator] Dean Pees, he’s been doing this for a long time. His defense has always been very solid.
And, you know, inside, it starts with [Falcon’s DL Grady] Jarrett inside. He’s a good football player. And then 45 [Falcon’s ILB Deion Jones] and 54 [Falcon’s ILB Foyesade Oluokun], their linebackers, those guys can run.
Obviously, we played against them last year in LA, they got some speed so it’s going be a heck of a challenge.
Q. There’s been a lot of conversation around the jersey number changes and how it affects offensive players, quarterbacks, centers. What’s your perspective on it? (Tim McManus)
Shane Steichen: That’s a really good question. I think once you get a feel for it and you know it and you see it on film a few times, then you’ll start to feel it.
But I think just when you see it’s, like, a DB number playing linebacker – I mean, that’s going to be unique to start. But I think once we get used to it and adapt to it, I think we’ll adjust fine.
Q. How do you coach that? (Tim McManus)
Shane Steichen: I think you show them on film and you have the practice jerseys on the field like, ‘Hey now, No. 6 is a defensive end.’ So, you got to talk them through it and show them and walk through it.
Q. Have the quarterbacks kind of mentioned that or have they not noticed that? (John McMullen)
Shane Steichen: We haven’t had very many conversations about that, to be honest.
Q. What’s your opinion on the team’s speed, specifically, the skilled positions? (Josh Tolentino)
Shane Steichen: As far as theirs?
Q. Yeah, as far as the overall group. (Josh Tolentino)
Shane Steichen: Yeah, no, I think they got good speed. They can run around, they can fly, make tackles, they can cover.
Like I said, every week in the NFL, it’s a heck of a challenge. Every team is good. So, we got to show up and play and fight our butts off on Sunday.
Q. Where the offense is now, is that something that you predicted when you guys first started installing it or did it pan out differently the more you went along here based upon QB Jalen Hurts and the guys and what you saw they can do? (Jeff McLane)
Shane Steichen: I like where we’re at. I really do. Obviously, as the season goes, we’ll continue to grow as an offense. But I like where we’re at.
I like the preparation we’ve had going into this week, and I know the guys are excited for this Sunday and the coaches are. And we’re fired up and ready to go.
Q. You guys ended up keeping WR J.J. Arcega-Whiteside on the 53-man roster. What did he show you during camp that made you want to include him in this group? (Mike Kaye)
Shane Steichen: You know what, he’s done a heck of a job. This guy’s tough. Now, he’s tough, he blocked his butt off, he did everything we asked him to do on special teams. And he just kept improving every day and doing what we asked to do.
He’s smart and he just wants to get better every day and we love that about him.
Q. As far as growing goes, those three wide receivers, WR Quez Watkins, WR DeVonta Smith, WR Jalen Reagor, how have they grown through camp to get to this point through opening day? (Ed Kracz)
Shane Steichen: I think it’s just the repetition. I keep going back to that, it’s the fundamentals and details that Coach Moorehead and [Eagles Head Coach Nick] Sirianni, and [Passing Game Coordinator] Kevin Patullo, our pass game coordinator, those guys do a heck of a job of teaching them the fundamentals and details of how we want the route run.
And you can see it. Every day in practice, there’s certain routes that come up. You know, it might be three days ago in practice and the same route comes up and the corrections made.
You know, so it’s been really good to see. So, I’m excited about the wide receiver group and looking forward to seeing those guys on Sunday.
Q. I asked Jalen Reagor this. Is there something to the chemistry of players growing together? You have a quarterback that came in with the same draft class as Jalen and Quez Watkins and DeVonta’s a rookie, so they are all going to grow together. Do we overrate that or is there something to that? (John McMullen)
Shane Steichen: No, I think there’s definitely something to that. Once they keep going over years and years and you get that nucleus, right, and those guys stay together for a while – it’s just all those teams, right?
All the really good ones that have been together for a while, you can see that chemistry. So, I think that’s big. Those guys keep growing together and creating that chemistry.
Q. Does T Jordan Mailata remind you of anyone you’ve seen before? (Bo Wulf)
Shane Steichen: No, he’s the biggest human being I’ve ever seen. He’s a big man.