Skip to main content

Transcript: Mike Smith post-practice interview


On Steelers T Flozell Adams and whole offensive line unit:

"Flozell is their starting right offensive tackle and, of course, he spent the majority of his career as a left offensive tackle. He's a big, physical offensive lineman that is a guy that knows how to play the game. I think he's fit in well with the rest of their offensive linemen in terms of the size of that group. That's probably one of the biggest offensive line groups in the entire League."

On how you gameplan the defense for a young, inexperienced quarterback:

"I don't think it changes a whole lot of what we're going to do in terms of scheme. I think what we have to make sure is, that we understand what his strengths are as a football player. He was a very accurate passer in college. I think he has the all-time completion percentage out there at the University of Oregon. The other thing he does is he runs extremely well. That I think is going to be the biggest thing for us. We don't want the play to break down and have the quarterback gain yards on us. It's going to be important for our defensive line to have very good rush lanes and we've got to be on top of our game with containment as well, because if he gets on the perimeter he's a guy that has the speed to run away from linebackers and certain defensive backs."

On what the hardest thing for an defensive lineman to overcome coming back from an ACL injury:

"I don't think that you have to re-teach the technique. I think the biggest thing is getting through the mental and physical blocks that you may have. You know that you've had two surgeries, you know that you've got to protect that knee and I think early on for people it's a natural thing that they do that. I think after they've had reps, and they've been able to stick it in the ground and be able to hold off double teams, I think that they feel a lot better about what they're capable of doing. It's natural, I think it's human nature that you go through that process. DT Trey (Lewis) coming back from back-to-back years with knee surgeries, I think it's a tribute to how hard he's worked."

On DE Kroy Biermann and what he's improved on since being here:

"I think one of the things that Kroy has really improved on is his strength. He has a better understanding of leverage. He was probably a 248, 250 pound defensive end out of Montana and I think that he's worked extremely hard with our Athletic Performance group. We've worked hard on certain areas trying to help him with his core strength. I think he's really re-worked his body, I think that's probably the biggest thing that everybody notices, and he's got a great motor. He's been an outstanding special teams player for us his first two years in addition to being a guy that's contributing in the pass rush. We anticipate in year three he'll just continue to improve."

On what has evolved at the defensive end position from when coaches stuck bigger bodies out there:

"I think that, you all want to have those big guys, when you start talking about DE Reggie (White) you're talking about a Hall of Famer, and DE Sean (Jones) Pro Bowler. I mean we'd all like to have guys like that. We want the biggest and the fastest guys we can get. I think that the game has evolved a little bit. I've said it many times, it's a spacing game, in terms of how offenses present formations, so you've got to have a little bit more athleticism. I think also that you see more and more people are using defensive ends in some of the exotic pressures that they're running. They're hybrid guys that can help you in pass defense or drop it the zones and even play some man-to-man on tight ends or backs. I think that might be a little bit of the evolution, but if you've got a big, fast one that can do that you'd rather have him than a guy who's a little bit smaller and a little bit slower."

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content