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Draft Transcript: Caldwell on Rounds 4 and 5

Posted May 10, 2014

Jaguars GM Dave Caldwell's quotes following the team's picks in round four and five

GENERAL MANAGER DAVE CALDWELL

(Opening statement on Aaron Colvin, Telvin Smith, and Chris Smith) “Right after the Senior Bowl, when Colvin tore his ACL, we had two days with him; really impressed us those first two days. This was always a plan to target him with our second fourth-round pick throughout the draft, barring the medical stuff would check out up to date, and to date it has been. He’s on schedule with his rehab and our doctors feel good about it, we feel good about it. ACLs nowadays are a situation that when they’re fixed and they’re fixed right, knock on wood, but we should be good to go there. We feel we got a really quality player there and somebody that can be a pillar of our secondary for the future.”

(On Aaron Colvin’s physicality and willingness to tackle) “Well he is a physical player and he is a good tackler and an efficient tackler which is important at the corner position. He also fits our mold in terms of his length, ability to press, and stay on top of receivers.”

(On when he can begin playing) “He’ll probably start the season on PUP and we’ll see where we’re at right around week 6 as to whether we should activate him. I think we’ll be in the ballpark there and if everything goes to plan he’ll probably start practicing around that time.”

(With the depth at that position does that give you flexibility as to when you play him?) “Yeah, in the NFL it’s a bonus that we can keep another player on our roster and not really have him count against our 53-man roster. You never know how the season unfolds and if we’re rolling and our secondary is playing good then if he’s not ready we can put him on IR. It gives us some flexibility. If the situation where he’s ready to go, and he can go, and there’s an injury there and we need a corner, then that is a good problem to have. We just have to take it slow with him but we feel that there is a good chance he can possibly contribute towards the second half of the season.”

(Are your goals to win now? It appears you are gearing towards 2015) “I think for us it’s to, not preach Gus’s (Bradley) philosophy, but to get better. This is a player that may help us this year. We’re not counting out that he’s not going to help us. We’re going to take it day-by-day and see where it’s at, but it’s not unrealistic to think he can help us. He’ll be nine months out (from his injury) right around the start of the season and that’s usually the conservative measure for ACLs,  so we’ll see where we’re at with it.”

(On advantage of drafting three straight players form Senior Bowl, an advantage?) “It is, and that’s what we said. Later rounds, in the fourth and fifth rounds when you feel good about these guys from the way they produce and the energy they had during the week and the ability to learn the system. We got to see if they were a culture fit here and felt they would be.”

(On Telvin Smith’s future position as linebacker) “He’s 6’3 and has the frame to grow into it. Historically, he’s been a late bloomer so he’s got room to grow, his frame has room to grow. Realistically, when he grows out, he’s going to be a high 220’s, low 230’s type of guy.”

(On where Telvin Smith needs to improve and develop) “First off, coming in and busing his butt on special teams and then see if he can crack the lineup as a nickel linebacker in passing situations. He runs a 4.49 so he has the ability to match up with athletic tight ends. He’s a space player and can cover a lot of ground.”

(On Telvin Smith’s drug situation) “It did bother us, but I don’t want to get into specifics. We had some very candid conversations with him and let him know that we drafted five really high-character guys before him and we expect him to follow the lead of those guys. He knows that it was a mistake of his and he’s paid dearly for it, so now he has the opportunity to make up for it.”

 

(Coach Jimbo (Fisher) said he was the heart and soul of their defense, does he come off as that?) “Absolutely, he’s electric with his energy and passion for the game. Just talking with him on the phone you could tell he was down but was still very positive and very upbeat.”

(How does it help having Geno Hayes and Dekoda Watson here?) “I think it’s good. Dekoda is a very good role model and he’s younger so he’s probably been around him a little bit more. We’ll see, we have a pretty good culture here and a good locker room. He just has to fall in line and know what’s expected of him and we expect him to take care of his business.”

(On Chris Smith’s athletic ability and measurables) “Very good arm length but also ran really well, 4.6 was his 40 time. I think he averaged close to 10 sacks over the last two seasons in the SEC, so he’s been a very productive pass rusher in the SEC. Then had a really good week at the Senior Bowl against top competition down there in the one-on-ones individual sessions of rushing the passer. Gives us some versatility too, we’re going to play him at defensive end but we feel like he can play that outside linebacker spot for us too, if we need too, or can be our spinner in special packages; he has done some of that at Arkansas.”

(On Smith’s field speed) “He’s a very good football player, very instinctive. You know, he’s short for a defensive end. But I’ve been around guys like that with Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis who didn’t have the actual height but he has 34-plus-inch arms to make up for that length and then his speed. We feel like him being able to get some leverage helps pass rushers sometimes.”

(On competition throughout the team) “We feel like we’re really raising the level of competition on the team and we knew it would take some time, but that’s part of the process and we’re not done and we’ll never be done in that aspect of it but we’ll see where it goes.”

(On when he began targeting Aaron Colvin) “When it (the injury) happened, I remember at the Combine I said we had that extra fourth-round pick for Eugene (Monroe), and that would be a nice spot to strike on him. Gus and I talked about it and he said yeah, and they did something similar in Seattle with Walter Thurmond when he came out, he tore his ACL late in the year. Corners are hard to find and this is a guy that played at a high level and very athletic and can do everything we need him to do. We said we wanted to come out with some starters and we have starter grades on him and we feel like this can be a starter in the future.”

(On Gus telling Colvin at the Combine that they would draft him) “Well we were planning on taking him and we talked about it before the Combine. We didn’t know where but we had that second fourth-round pick targeted. We had some discussions throughout today and felt like it’s always been the plan, let’s not deviate from it.”

(On lack of communication with Colvin at Combine) “I think there was nothing we could do with him. We knew he was a great kid, we had two days with him at the Senior Bowl. All our research was great on him, it was really up to our doctors. I wasn’t going to say. ‘Your ACL looks good.’ We knew that it was a medical issue at that point in time.”

(On Colvin’s flexibility between corner and safety)  “We like him as a corner but he has flexibility as a corner. He can play outside and he can play nickel inside too. He’s going to give us some flexibility moving forward.”

(On Telvin Smith’s drug situation) “We studied all that history and Coach Fisher spoke about him being the heart and soul of the team. We really felt like the reports we got on him were good. Hey, they’re college kids, we don’t agree with it, we don’t condone it, but I think we’ve always said we’re not going to take 53 angelic guys, and they’re going to have a past and a history. We need to let them know what our expectations are as the Jacksonville Jaguars not only inside this building but outside this building.”

(Any worries about future drug problems?) “No, I think he’s learned his lesson, I would say. It was a very expensive lesson for him.”

(Did he drop because of the drug situation?) “We believe so, yeah.”

(Any trade chatter with other teams today?) “There was a little bit, but it was more for some future picks. We really wanted to take advantage of this year’s draft and what we had. You never know when you trade future picks, where that team will end up. It could be good, it could be bad.”

 

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