I'll do Mort's later tonight. Here's Rivera's:
The Drive: How much time spent on #1 pick?
Ron Rivera: Every moment of the day, except today since I'm talking to you two.
D: Have you narrowed your list?
R: We've met with the coaches and all the scouts and we've gone through that list and now we're addressing the process of shortening the list, and we will finish that evaluation sometime next week.
D: Quesiton marks on D, you're a defensive guy, #1 D last year @ San Diego - or are you looking at QB? Cam Newton?
R: What we've done is identified the needs that fit the tema the most right now... How does that player impact us as a defense? does he just help that side of the ball? does he impact the other side of the ball on offense? Does he have special teams value? in about a week week and a halfs time, we ahve to really believe that guy is going to have an overall impact on the organization as well
D: 2 weeks from draft night. Would you possibly consider trading out of #1 pick? getting 2nd rounder?
R: Take a look at all possibilities; scenario we've talked about. Who would possibly make that call that they would love to trade with you? What value is there pick? Some very good players at a few position that WILL be there in the 2nd round. We're trying not to create a guy that is not going to be that guy (hmm), we have to be 100% sure, and we have to listen too.
D: You did say a couple weeks ago you were around 8 different guys you were considering? Do you have a number right now?
R: No, first day we're doing it, little break right now. GOing through the process right now. Next week we should come to a conclusion about top 3, then try to finish those guys by end of next week and by start of that week we will make final questions on those last few guys... Marty & Don have set things up interesting for us to look at these guys... Not sure people know how deep we've had to go... Good group of guys, situation where you've got to make sure how you feel about a guy at the end of the day.
D: Feels like an incredibly important decision for Panthers. Said impact player has on entire organization. Interesting because when I think about that, how important is playing right away?
R: Player will come in and make an impact right away, but certain circumstances may dictate otherwise depending on the guy you pick obviously. Guy that comes in will be young coming into a young group, will be a learning process, but we believe we can make in roads and start winning. Guy has to make impact, has to be ready to make sacrifices.
D: Has anyone called about trades?
R: Nobody directly has done that, nothing solid (Interesting). We are aware that is part of what could happen.
D:How tough is it? Back when you played, having coached, now all of a sudden #1 pick isn't as prestigious as it used to be when you played?
R: When I played, #1 picks didn't need to get on the field, but now when you get taken 1st/2nd/3rd round, you have to get on the field right away. When I was taken in 2nd round you didn't need to play right away - special teams... first start came 3 years after drafted... was around a #1 pick that didnt start until 2nd year... not sure why people get pushed out to start... some guys who can get on the field right away like Dan Marino, but not a lot of guys that are ready for the rigors of playing in the NFL.
D: Lack of patience?
R: Money has changed the game. Salary cap, players have to get on the field since they are replacing players really quickly.
D: Cam Newton causes phones to go crazy for 4 hours. Do me this favor: We'd say Newton is a great athlete, engaging personality, questions about past, his ability to adapt from spread to NFL. Add or subtract anything.
R: I think what you've done is addressed is part of the question we have. It's not just him, but also Blaine Gabbert, but everyone talks about him in the same vein because he's come from a spread. Lots of same questions on both he and Blaine, whether it be D-Lineman or corner, there are questions about every guy because they are coming from different situations coming in to a place where guys are equal or better.
D: One read and run and shotgun spread formation - are you going to look at your biggest need or best player on board?
R: Combination. The one thing that we get when you are first pick, you don't have to worry about the best guy not being there. In our situation, we get to decide what is our biggest need, what is our truly biggest need, but later on then you go back to that.
D: Should impact on the community/jersey sales/how much the Panthers attention get? is that factored in?
R: That is a great question for those guys (front office personnel), but the biggest thing is that IMPACT ON THE COMMUNITY has to be huge. Has to be ready to give back. Always believed that. Ditka emphasized that when I was with the Bears and I believe. Whoever that is has to understand that you are part of a community and you have to give back to it. Not a discussion.
D: Jags pass on exciting "hometown guy", Jags not just about selecting tickets and jerseys. Are we?
R: Bottom line is winning football games sells jerseys and tickets, main focus needs to be about winning. THis team was 2-14 but every game was sold out. And that to me is a huge tribute to the community, and also we've got to work to put a better product on the field this season, faster, better, but most of all smarter, and give back to the community now. Worst I've ever been is 5-11 as a coach, and it's hard on the fans, but if the fans keep showing up to support you, you HAVE to give back to them.
D: How do you prepare for 3rd or 6th round pick?
R: That falls right in line; if we go in this direction, what is the next direction we need to go? If we go QB, do you go offensive lineman? DL? Corner? or WR in 3rd?
D: Do you rank them? Top 30 for each position?
R: Yeah, you also clump players where you think they will fall, and you have to spend time with the guys who you think will fall to you so you dont' waste time on guys you don't think you'll get the chance.
D: What was transition to coordinator to coach?
R: When I transitioned from LB to D-Coordinator, had to go from one group to full defense. Now I'm talking to the whole team. Watched kickers, long snappers work out. It's a change.
D: Not talking to players, not getting ready for minicamp. Must feel weird.
R: Would love to have met everyone talked to everyone. Trying to take a step ahead of the process so we're ready to go when it's time to go.
Edited by mav1234, 14 April 2011 - 08:42 PM.