RAMS HEAD COACH SEAN MCVAY
(Wednesday Conference Call with Baltimore Media)
Everyone talks about the greatness of DT Aaron Donald. For someone who has coached him for a few years and has seen him every day, why do you think Aaron Donald is so exceptional?_ (Jamison Hensley)_"It's a rare combination of the talent that is incredible, but then the work ethic that exists. And then the ability to say he never lets complacency set in. He's always challenging himself. No one is a bigger critic of Aaron Donald than he is of himself. And I just think that consistent energy that he brings every single day, that mindset and mentality, accompanied with his skillset, is what makes him so unique and special."
Is there a particular benefit to having a player like DT Aaron Donald when you're going up against an offense that plays out of the pistol so often? (Aaron Kasinitz) "I don't know if it's exclusive to the pistol, because they do a great job of being able to mix it up and present a variety of different things out of that pistol formation and different personnel groupings and things like that. But Aaron [Donald] is a special player. That definitely always helps increase the production level of your defense. He's one of those rare guys that makes the other 10 around him better, and certainly, we're going to have to be at our best against a really impressive unit, offensively, with what you guys have going."
We know you saw QB Cam Newton Week 1 and then QB Russell Wilson Week 5, but how different is it to prepare for QB Lamar Jackson and this offense? (Gabby DiPaula) "It's very different. And they do such a great job. I think Greg Roman has done an outstanding job being able to mix up the personnel groupings, the looks that you're presented with. And obviously, Lamar [Jackson] is playing at such a high level where he's a threat throwing the football, he's a threat running it. You have to honor the fact of what a good downhill, direct runner [Mark] Ingram is. The line is playing well. Tight ends, receivers [are] making plays. So, there are just so many different things that you have to prepare for, and I think, specifically, with what they're activating and the variety of different looks and final formations and motions and things like that out of the pistol, the offset gun, that's what makes it such a challenge. And you have to do a great job of playing disciplined and understanding who has what, especially if they activate some of the zone-read things."
When CB Marcus Peters was traded here, he went out of his way to compliment the Rams organization for everything that they have done for him. Are you looking forward to your reunion with Peters on Monday night? (Jamison Hensley)"I love Marcus Peters. I can't say enough good things about my experience with him. We had a great relationship. He's a great football player, extremely smart. He has great ball skills, great instincts, and I really enjoyed our time together. I'm really happy to see how well he's done on a great team. And then you just look at the production that he's immediately had, when you look at what he did against Seattle in his first game with you guys. I'm really happy for Marcus and really enjoyed working with him over the last year-and-a-half."
What makes former Raven S Eric Weddle a unique presence in your building? (Aaron Kasinitz) "He's one of the smartest football players I've been around. He truly sees the game through the eye of the quarterback. He understands all 22 [roles]. There are certain guys that understand it from their vantage point, but he sees the game big-picture, perspective-wise. He's like an extension of the coaching staff. He has such great ownership. It's one thing to be able to hold the clicker and be able to make corrections. It's another thing where he's able to process this stuff in live time with the play clock ticking, with the changes that need to be made or the communication and calls. And obviously, he's a great athlete that's still playing at a high level there. So, all of those things into one make him a really good player, and that's why he's been so good for us and why he was so good for you guys for a few years as well."
I know a lot of people talk about creativity with your offense. With offensive coordinator Greg Roman, how creative is that? Is it different than anything else that is being run out there today? (Jamison Hensley) "I think so. I think what he's done such a great job of, is he's adjusted the scheme to fit the personnel and to maximize guys' opportunities to make plays and do what they do best. That's a sign of a great coach. Certainly, he's a guy that I've always respected from afar at the various stops that he's been. But what he's done an outstanding job of is implementing some things that are very rare, what they can activate, but still really put a lot of conflict, a lot of pressure, on a defense. And you can see there's an intent behind everything that they're doing, and they intentionally put the defense in a lot of conflict based on what he's doing and some of the plays that he's selecting."