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What They Said: LeSean McCoy and Tyrod Taylor ahead of Bills-49ers

RB LeSean McCoy

Q: Is playing Chip still a big deal for you this year, or is that behind you now?
A: For sure, way behind me. I think it was more just the team than Chip. Going back to my old team where I did so much there, you know I got there at 20 years old. You know I was there for quite some time so, so I think more it had to do with just going back home. You know my home town is an hour away more than just dealing with Chip. So that’s game right here, it’s just a normal game that we want to win. Going 4-2 this is a big game for us.

Q: Are there any lingering feelings about Chip that you haven’t mentioned?
A: No, I mean I’ve never had a real issue with him. You know, some things we didn’t see eye-to-eye. I mean that’s tons of players and coaches. I think ours is more vocal and kinda immediate which is different from other players, but I have no issue with him.

Q: You did say you can’t shake his hand.
A: Yeah, I mean I’m sure there’s people you work with that you don’t care to shake their hand and hold long conversations about your children and all that and different activities. But you work with them so, I have no problem with him.

Q: Are you going to show him that you’re back to where you were, I’m sure especially after last week you felt like that guy again.
A: I’m just feeling good. The guys up front are blocking really well, we’re winning games and that’s just the main focus. I’m trying to win games in Buffalo and that’s all that really matters.

Q: Would you call yourself a perfectionist, because in the games where you do perform after the game you’re always talking about “this play we didn’t make it”, would you call yourself a perfectionist?
A: I just call myself as being honest. I think a lot of players have good games or star players that are successful. You’ve got to have good game makers, but you can’t just lie on the sunset like that. But no I’m just being honest, some plays that I had back that I wish I could have done better. I’m just trying to perfect my game and be the player that this team needs and that they want.

Q: Do you ever feel satisfied with games you’ve had? Do you reflect on games that way or do you just focus on what you could do better?
A: Kinda both. You know, you always wanna do your best. There are always plays that you want back, you kinda could have done it differently. And then there’s some games that you play well. The numbers might not be there, but you got an assignment and you were 100 percent, you were perfect. That’s very hard, but there are some times that that happens. So the numbers will always show that.

Q: In that sense how good does it feel at least to know after the injuries last year that you’re at least back to playing to your potential and how you at least played previously?
A: I mean with last year it was hard, just with the injuries and the lack of time being here and playing on the same field with all the other starters. That’s always tough and I practiced and go out there and try to have a great game and be out there 100 percent. All those things definitely matter, so I just never really wanted to make an excuse. I feel like whatever you put on tape, that’s what you put on tape. I mean there’s no getting around that, but right now as a team we’re playing well. It starts with the guys up front, they’ve been blocking so well. We’re converting on third downs, getting at the tough yards, we’re making plays we’ve just got to find a way to execute all the time. You know, we tend to do well and then have a dead period, okay and then we get back started again and do well.

Q: How much of a difference has Anthony Lynn made and what are the changes, obviously three straight wins, changes were made.
A: Well, I think the biggest thing is just simplifying the offense, let talent find its place and just let us play. Taking the thinking part out of it and also he gives you so many things to prepare for in the running game. There’s times where I’m behind the quarterback, I’m behind the full back, running shot gun, running center. He does a lot of different mix ups he even does the option. So as a defense you gotta watch us play, you gotta account for everything. You know I think that’s the most dangerous thing that he does he just gives the defense different looks to prepare for.

Q: Do you think that he does a better job than what was done before to take advantage of player’s strengths because it seems that Tyrod (Taylor) seems to be a bit more unleased and he gives the ball you to in spots where he has a little bit more room.
A: It’s hard to really compare it, kinda compare the two, they each do something different. You’re kinda talking about the other coordinator kinda? Yeah, they’re different.

Q: It seems just smoother, the plays have a flow.
A: Yeah, we’re starting to see to get the plays in. One of the biggest things I think is tempo. Coach Lynn is big on tempo, get on the line of scrimmage, getting the calls, getting the checks, having enough time to do that. You know, you’re kinda rushing, you have a lot of motions and you get the play late or the play comes in late. It’s hard to kinda, set the offense where you want it. But, I mean they’re both successful. I think so. I think G-Ro (Greg Roman) is a hell of a coach. He has tons of success running the ball and Coach Lynn’s doing it right now.

Q: Do you have an idea with all the things that’s going on with (Colin) Kaepernick as a starter? I don’t want to call it a circus, but it’s been sort of an ordeal.
A: Yeah well, football wise we’ve got to prepare for him, but that’s more of the defense, so they’ll take care of that. That’s what they do best, on defense. All the extra stuff, everyone’s got an opinion about it. I think the good thing about being here in American; that’s his freedom. If he wants to speak about it or take a knee, then that’s what he wants to do. There no law again that. As players we’re just trying to win football games. There’s different platforms you can choose to talk about it or make a stand for something like that. The thing is he chose to do it on the field, but that’s really up to him. My take on it is obviously the things the cops are doing is definitely wrong. But there’s good people, there’s bad people. There’s good cops, there’s bad cops. Actually, this game or next game I’m going to invite some police to the game, probably 15 or 20, just an appreciation type of thing because they’re taking so much heat right now and what’s going on is definitely wrong, but I always feel there’s just bad people, there’s good cops and there’s bad cops. So that’s something actually, me and my foundation we’ll be going and also inner-city kids we’re going to bring them to the game too. You know, you’ve got to show appreciation cause nobody’s perfect. I don’t want all cops getting a bad rap for what bad cops are doing, cause there are still good cops. And at the end of the day if there’s something wrong going on, or there’s something that is dangerous I’m sure Kap (Colin Kaepernick) will call the cops, he’ll call 911.

Q: And this comes from someone who’s had a run-in with the police.
A: I mean the thing is, with the media you guys know about the cops situation I had, so for me to say that, that’s genuine.

Q: Are those the police in particular you’ll be inviting?
A: Ha, yeah for sure. Let’s make that clear, only Buffalo cops.

Q: LeSean, one of the differences in the offense has been that there with Jerome (Felton) on the field a lot more the last few weeks.
A: I’m gonna say this, other than Jerome (Felton) getting in my way on a couple of touchdown runs, okay.

Q: Did you guys have some fun with that?
A: I mean it was no fun, it was more what are you doing? But overall Jerome, he doesn’t get a lot of credit, but he goes offensive line, #1 playing the best and #2 is Jerome’s really playing lights out. I think it’s more his style coming down field, he’s floating through the defender, not really have to go side to side or find him, knowing who his guy is, spotting him out and running through him. And actually getting first downs. You know, we need him to, so he’s the most efficient running back we have.

Q: LeSean just to clarify, is this something, to invite the cops and the kids; is this something that you planned this last week or is this something you had planned for San Francisco or?
A: No no no, it has nothing to do about Kap (Colin Kaepernick) or San Fran. We’ve been in talk so it might be his week or next home game. We’re kinda getting it sorted out right now.

Q: So it’s not finalized?
A: yeah not finalized, but we’ve been in talk and having conversations about it. Just trying to find the right date for them. They’ve got to protect us, so they’re busy.

Q: You felt that you wanted to reach out to the police?
A: I reached out to them, yeah. Just, like I said it has nothing to do with Kap (Colin Kaepernick) or the situation. I think that he thinks he’s doing the right thing, because everyone’s opinion is never a wrong opinion and I think he’s right with what he’s saying as far as we need to do something about what’s going on. Because it is wrong, but then again there’s good people and then there’s bad people. There’s good cops and then there’s bad cops. So I’m just trying to show them appreciation.

Q: You’ve been threated a couple of times after what happened not to do anything stupid you must have more emotion as to what Kaepernick is doing.
A: Hey man, just be professional and be respectful. I mean you know right from wrong. He’s a human being, he’s a person. I think fans and people get it confused that these athletes are superstars and they’re not human, but they are. So he has feelings and he has a family, I’m not sure if he has children, but he has a mom and dad and you don’t want nothing to happen to your children, your mom and dad.

QB Tyrod Taylor

Q: What are your thoughts on Colin Kaepernick coming to town? This has gotten well beyond sports. What’s your take on that?
A: Well he has an opportunity to start. I know he’s been waiting on it. They’re trying to switch up things, it looks like, as far as on the field, give a new energy. I’m pretty sure he’s prepared mentally and physically. He’s definitely going to bring a challenge. So looking forward to playing against him.

Q: Do you have any thought at all about what he has started, a national trend, looking at the protest?
A: No. I mean he has every right to believe and stand for what he believes in. I don’t think it’s going to take any attention away from the game itself. He’s standing for something he believes in, and like I said, he has the right to do so.

Q: I think we all knew that LeSean McCoy wasn’t 100 percent last year coming out of camp with a hamstring. Just from watching on film, him last year to him this year, what part of his game do you feel was robbed from him the most with that injury last year?
A: I would say he’s definitely playing with an extra burst, and you could tell last year like you said, the hamstring was definitely bothering him on certain runs. He couldn’t get back to some of the holes that he was trying to get to, and I think this year he’s definitely seeing them and getting back to them with his feet as well.

Q: How was your relationship with Anthony Lynn in the last three weeks been? Have you gotten any closer? You’ve obviously had to deal with him a little bit more
A: Definitely. I think we’ve definitely grown closer. We’ve met more, because at the end of the day, I’m him on the field. I have to bring his vision, as far as gameplan, to the players and execute it on the field. The more that we become closer, the better off we are as a team, and we’re gradually learning each other and continue to keep working with each other, just trying to build a good relationship and continue to win games.

Q: After the first win here, I asked you if you seemed comfortable when you’re running around and it’s chaotic everywhere. Has he allowed that to be more of how you play and unleashed you a little bit more than it was before? It just seems like you’re more willing and able to run.
A: As far as the freedom to do more of that stuff, certain plays are designed QB runs and I’m able to get those plays but some of that stuff happens on the fly. You can’t predict some of those moments and that’s just me becoming a player and reacting in a positive way, and going out there and trying to create a play. I will credit some of the broken plays where I’m going out there, escaping pressure, that’s just a credit to the guys if it’s a pass play that we connect on. That’s just a credit to the guys. Continue to keep playing through the whistle, and never giving up.

Q: Has he given you a little more confidence to do that? You don’t have someone in your ear saying “stay in the pocket,” and he’s more willing to give you the green light.
A: I was never told stay in the pocket. I was told to do whatever it takes to go out there and win games, and like I said, certain games are going to cause for me to move outside of the pocket more than others. But at the end of the day, you just have to move the chains. Whatever it takes to get a first down, and ultimately, get in the end zone.

Q: Do you see more need to generate bigger plays via the passing game? Any concern that it hasn’t been the case as much as you hoped?
A: We’ve hit some big plays and we’ve also come close to some big plays. That’s not going to be the case every weekend. Of course you want to come out of the game with a couple big plays. That’s definitely a spark and a positive for our offense. If we can continue to stay on the field, I think that’s the main thing. Convert on third downs. The big plays will definitely come. And you want to take advantage when those opportunities come. But you’re not going to hit every last one of them.

Q: When the switch was made at offensive coordinator, Rex said he was going to start attending offensive meetings. Is that still happening and what’s going on with that?
A: He gets to a couple of them a week. He bounces his head in and out of there. He doesn’t say much though. Just observing. Seeing the process and making sure everything is up to par.

Q: Do you see a benefit to that?
A: Yeah in him giving his insight. He’s a great defensive coach, and him telling us some of the things that maybe hurt a scheme or so. Giving his insights on a play call definitely helps us.

Q: What have you learned about Anthony Lynn in the last three weeks? Is he serious? Does he make you laugh?
A: I’ll say it’s a happy medium. I will say, he’s all business with us on the field. He definitely has a sense of humor, but he definitely expects a lot out of the players. He lets us be ourselves, but when we step on that field and when we come into the meeting room, treat it like a game and preparation is business like.

Q: Eric Wood had to be nervous that he screwed up on that missed snap. How’d you break it to him that you weren’t lined up behind him?
A: After we scored the touchdown.

Q: What’s led to you finding Charles Clay more?
A: Charles is a tremendous talent as far as our blocking game and as far as running routes, and it’s my job to get him the ball. Definitely his matchups cause problems for the other defenses, whether it’s a safety or a linebacker, and he catches the ball very well. Runs very good routes. So the more that we can use him, the more I can get the ball to him, the better we are as an offense.

Q: How does he work in the structure of this offense? You know he’s always going to be in a certain place?
A: For sure. Like I said, I think the thing that helps out is matchup wise, you know for the most part that he’s going to win his matchups. He’s just as fast as a receiver, but like I said, in a tight end body. And he gets in and out of breaks very well and catches the ball well. As far as zone looks, he could become the first. It depends on the coverage. For the most part, he’ll win the majority of the matchups he sees, and it’s my job to get him the ball.

Q: When you hand the ball off to LeSean McCoy, how does it feel watching him do his thing, going through traffic like that?
A: Well I’m supposed to be carrying out a fake, but sometimes you get caught watching, and I mean, it’s amazing to see, because I see a back angle. I can see a cut and he’ll see it as well too so we’ll talk about it after the game and maybe on the sideline. It’s definitely a positive, like I said, when he’s out there, running the way he’s been running, definitely very beneficial for our team.

Q: Isn’t it unique and special that some guys can’t see that cut?
A: Definitely. Number one in the league to me. I think I told him that last week. A lot of guys can see a hole but can’t necessarily get to it. He can see it and get to it with his speed.

Q: Do you have expectations for Sammy Watkins to come back this year?
A: I definitely talk to Sammy every time he’s in the facility, we have a conversation about something. He’s working his butt off to get back and the guys, we’d love to have him back and it’s better that he’s healthy, than being out there playing injured. So we encourage him. We lift him up. And once he gets back, we’ll pick up where we left off.

Courtesy of the Buffalo Bills

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