HEAD COACH JOHN HARBAUGH
Opening statement:"Good to see you guys here. Beautiful football weather out here, right? What a great early fall day to come out and practice football in Maryland. So, we had a great day today, a lot of guys are high in spirits and very focused. It was fun to be a coach today.
"A couple of announcements; 'J.P.P.' [Jason Pierre-Paul] has agreed to terms pending a physical. He's not here yet, actually his daughter's birthday is Saturday, but he'll be here after that, and we'll get a physical and everything should be fine with that. As far as some of the guys out here, 'Bate' [Rashod Bateman] had kind of a personal issue today, so he's fine. He'll play. [Devin] Duvernay has been cleared to play. J.K. Dobbins, he practiced fully. Who else? (Reporter: "Ronnie Stanley?")[Ronnie] Stanley had a recovery day today."
We haven't asked you about T Ronnie Stanley and how his ramp-up period has gone these last few weeks, and he practiced back-to-back days this week. _(Luke Jones) _"I really think it's kind of getting to the point where it's kind of week-to-week, day-to-day-ish. Again, it comes back to him feeling like he's going to be playing at his best. That's really what it boils down to. [He is] very sound, very strong. He's in great shape, maybe the best shape that I've seen him in some ways since he's been here; I don't know, it's hard to compare, but he's doing really well that way. So, when he feels like he's ready to go out there and be Ronnie Stanley at his best, then he'll be out there."
You have the fewest penalty yards in the NFL after two games. What's been the key to that? (Todd Karpovich) _"I appreciate you pointing that out. _(laughter)Alright, yes. Thanks for the question. It's a start, right, and we have a long way to go, but our guys are playing disciplined football. They're doing a good job with their feet and their hands, and playing fundamental football in those kinds of situations, and that's what you do. We're not grabby in the backend, our offensive linemen aren't holders; we don't teach that. Knock on [wood], let's keep it up. Let's keep it rolling."
With OLB Jason Pierre-Paul, do you have a sense of how quickly he'll be able to ramp up, or is it hard to know until you see him? _(Childs Walker) _"It'll be hard to know until we see him, but he worked out though, so we have a pretty good idea that he looks good. It's just going to be how he looks out there really at practice. As soon as he's ready, he wants to play, I know that. He's not coming in here to take a lot of time to get ramped up; I don't think that's in his mind right now. So, as soon as he looks like he's ready to go, he'll be out there."
How exciting is it to bring in a player with the pedigree of OLB Jason Pierre-Paul? _(Luke Jones) _"It's always exciting. I would say about him specifically, it's exciting because he's a football player; he loves football, he's a competitive guy. I've always admired the kind of way he goes about his business, and all the guys – not just him. Some other guys that we've brought in too, there's some under the radar guys that I could mention to you, like T.J. Carrie is out there; I'm really thrilled he's here. He's working to get fully back and help us. So, you feel that way about all the guys that you bring in."
How difficult or different is it for you guys to study the New England offense that doesn't have a true offensive coordinator? _(David Andrade) _"Yes, it's really not a factor. You look at what they do, and honestly, they have a system there that's very much in place. Very well established, obviously incredibly successful over the last 20 years. So, it's an evolution of who they've been all these years anyway, so you kind of take that into account."
RB J.K. Dobbins has had full participation for two weeks now. What is it going to take for him to be able to be active? _(Jamison Hensley) _"Yes, I'm just going to have to leave that for when the time comes. You'll know it when you see it, let's put it that way. [He's] working hard, I'm happy how he's working. We have certain parameters that we're looking at and things like that, and it's not going to be too long."
You mentioned that TE Nick Boyle has been ramping up and if he does play Sunday, his first game back will be in New England, where he injured his knee in 2020. Do you know how he is approaching the possibility of making his debut? _(Jonas Shaffer) _"Yes, we'll see. We have to decide all of those things still. I don't think that's factoring in. You'd have to ask him how it's factoring in. I think it's a very interesting thing to consider; I haven't really talked to him about it, but I don't know really."
All the players like challenges and have goals in mind. Is it something different for them to face a team that they've never beaten at Gillette Stadium? (David Andrade) _"I'm not following." _(Reporter: "You guys have never beaten the Patriots away.") "I don't think that's true, actually." (Reporters: "In the regular season.") "Oh, I don't care. (laughter) We beat them in the playoffs, when it counts for more." (laughter)
With OLB Jason Pierre-Paul not here yet and OLB Steven Means getting hurt, do you anticipate elevating an outside linebacker from the practice squad? _(Bo Smolka) _"That's a possibility. Yes, that's in our possible plans."