• Joey Jarzynka

Jets GM Joe Douglas Quotes 4/20/20

COURTESY OF NEW YORK JETS MEDIA RELATIONS DEPARTMENT


Opening Statement… I also want to again acknowledge the efforts of our essential workers, not only in the medical field but in the service industry, the people working in grocery stores, and pharmacies, and parcel services, UPS, Post Office. They really are the epitome of the best of us. I want to thank them for their tireless work to help us and provide.

All of us at Jets, we’re trying to do our best to provide relief in a small way. If we can be a small diversion to everything that’s happening around us. As far as the draft, I think we settled into our working conditions. Like I mentioned before, our IT department’s really shined during this time and they’ve really put us in a position to communicate seamlessly with all of our different groups. And that setup allows for me to go through segmented groups, to have necessary conversations for us to be effective. I think we have set everything up to be as close as possible to what we’d experience if we were back at our facility in Fulham Park.

I want to thank coach Gates, his staff. We just finished up our meetings with the coaching staff last Friday. I want to think Rex, Rex Hogan, Chad Alexander, Dan Zbojovsky, all of our personnel staff for us to come together last week. They were great meetings. I think we were able to accomplish a lot and get us to the point where we’re at today. They did a great job of working remotely, just collaborative. We were able to have lots of people in on the calls and have a lot of positive conversations. It was a great week.

We’ve had our meetings, like I said, with the scouts and coaches. The next step for us, we’ll have some small group discussions that include ownership. We’ll finalize our board in the coming days. And like I said in the last time we talked, we’re going to be ready to roll Thursday. Philosophically, we’re going to take the best player available and our board’s going to represent that.

I think we have all our protocols in place. I think we’re going to have a smooth draft. We have a mock draft coming up with the league after, at one o’clock. So looking forward to going through that, working out any kinks that we may find in the process. We’ll do that shortly.

Outside meeting reps and Dan, we have the ability to make our selection, in the unlikely event that there is a glitch. And again we have a real opportunity in this draft, eight picks and four of them in the top 79. So we’re trying to bring in the players that can make an impact for us and adapt and really stabilize and fortify this roster. So with that I will open it up to questions in the group.


On if he has been in communication with Jamal Adams recently…

I haven’t had any conversations recently with Jamal since last we talked. I will say that our voluntary off season program begins April 27th and the highlighted word is voluntary.


On if his plan has changed regarding Adams being “A Jet for Life”…

Nothing’s changed since the last time we spoke.


On if he will listen to offers about Adams…

Yeah. I mean I’ve made it known that we certainly … the plan would be for Jamal to be here long-term. And again, I’ve also made it known that I have to do what’s in the best interest of this team. And if other teams call and talk about players, I’ll listen. But going into this draft, my intent isn’t to move any players, but if a team calls, we’re going to

have conversations. I don’t view it as hedging. I view it as doing my job.


On if he will engage with teams about Adams…

Well, I’m not going to get into hypotheticals about engaging and going back and forth.


On if he views Adams as an untouchable player…

As far as or how I feel about the quarterback position, I feel like I’ve always made that known and I feel quarterback’s the most important position in all of professional sports. And I feel like we have a very good young player in Sam Darnold. And so Jamal, my opinion on Jamal has been consistent through since I arrived here. Jamal’s an unbelievable young player and again, our plan is to keep Jamal here a long time.


On his timeline with extending Adams…

I think kind of once we get through free agency. We’ve gotten through the draft. I think our next step is going to be to get together as a group and the plan is going to be to connect with Jamal at some point after the draft.


On the difficulty of getting tangibles about players when there isn’t the same amount of in person meeting time with players compared to past drafts…

I think you really have to trust in the work that our guys have done since August, going into the schools. Our scouts, they’re our boots on the ground they’re our recon team. They’re out front gaining as much information and knowledge about players as possible. And these guys do a great job going into schools and building relationships with people in programs and getting great information on players, their makeup, their personality, their football character. And so we lean on that information every year, especially this year. And also to follow up on that, I think our coaching staff has done a tremendous job in terms of using the technology that they’ve been given to get to know these players as best as they can through the last couple of weeks with these video conferencing calls. I’ve been able to sit in a majority of them and they have been outstanding.


On the edge rusher position…

Well I’m really excited. I think I touched on this last time we talked. I’m really excited that Jordan’s back. He’s an outstanding teammate and an outstanding player. And I think when you talk about that position in general, you can’t have enough edge rushers and an edge presence. I think that is one of the premium positions in the league and everybody’s looking to disrupt the passing game, whether it’s an edge rusher or an interior rusher, I think those guys make impacts on games.


On not finalizing a deal with Marqui Christian…

Yeah. Not going to get into the specifics of Marqui other than to say that we’re just weren’t able to finalize the deal at the end of the day.


On Patrick Onwuasor…

When it comes to Patrick, he was the guy that the Ravens have had a lot of success of getting late round undrafted free agent linebackers to come in and produce. Patrick’s been one of those type linebackers. I think what you get with him is you get an unbelievable motor. He has great range. He can track it sideline to sideline and he’s a very good blitzer. We feel like he had one of his better years playing next to CJ a few years ago and I think both of those guys are excited to be teammates again.


On his philosophy regarding a player who had a flagged test at the combine…

I would say, in years past it was a little bit different. When a player failed a combine drug test, he was automatically put into the program. Obviously those things have changed in the new CBA. As far as the actual test, I think look, I mean we’ve all made mistakes in life and I think what we’re trying to do but you try to vet the situations like that is the timing of that mistake and the digging into the behavioral aspect, the decision making aspect of exactly why that mistake was made. So our board isn’t going to be set until Thursday. It’s fluid and our guys are going to be digging on background until Thursday night. So we’re going to do a lot of work on a lot of players up until that timeframe.


On the gap in picks between 11 and 48 and if he plans to be active to try to bridge the gap…

Yeah, obviously 11 to 48 is a long gap. I think when we get together in these strategy sessions, we’re going through a lot of different scenarios. Those include who would we move up for at 11 but who do we move back? What would we do? So we’re going through all those different scenarios right now, especially when it comes to 11 and 48 and who we think is going to be there. Obviously there’s a lot of meat left on the bone when it comes from pick one to 47, so it could go a number of ways. So right now, we’re primarily focusing on pick 11 but we’re also putting our top 50 players together and making sure we have the best top 50 that we could possibly have for Friday night.


On if he has received any interest from other teams on Adams…

I’m not going to go into any conversation I’ve had with other teams on any of our players.


On the importance of the draft for him…

No, I mean I don’t take this opportunity like lightly. Like I said, we’ve got eight picks and four in the top 79. And we have to do our best to get the right type of player, the right type of person that’s going to come in here and turn things around and get us going in the right direction. And we’ve seen impact drafts make a real difference in a short time. So those are the things that we discuss. I mean coach Harbaugh says all the time in the draft meetings, who are the guys we’re excited about. Let’s get the guys that we’re all excited about. And we take that subjective viewpoint. We mix it with the objective view point of analytics and we tried to follow the right path to the right player.


On what he expects to get out of the draft practice run and if there are any anxieties or challenges due to technology and working remote for the draft…

Well it’s either going to allay them or create anxiety. In all honesty, I feel like this is going to be a smooth process. I think so many people have worked hard to make sure that this is going to be smooth and we have backup plans in case something crazy were to happen with power or internet. So I’m looking forward to getting into this draft room and seeing how it’s going to work. Right now I have no concerns, so I’m excited about joining this mock draft in half hour.


On where his draft room is located at his house…

I have an office on the first floor. It’s a makeshift office, but I think we’ve done a good job. I’ve got a nice desk. I’ve tried to create an environment that’s almost identical to the environment I have my office at Florham Park and I’ve had a lot of help from a lot of people doing that. My wife was upset because we moved into our house during the season, so I hadn’t really spent much time in the house and we didn’t really have the proper decorations up. So I feel like the last two days we made sure and getting pictures on the wall so it looks good for the camera and she’d been on me about that.


On if he believes Adams should be the highest paid player on the team right now…

I’m not even going to touch that one. He’s an outstanding player and we would like him to be here a long time.


On what he makes of the wide receiver draft class…

We’ve done a lot of work on these wide receivers. We feel it’s a good group. We feel like there’s other positions that are deep as well. So if the right opportunity presents itself, if there’s a wide receiver when we’re on the clock that we think has a chance to come in here and make an impact, help us, help us in terms of offensively or special teams as a core team or a returner, those are all the things that we’re looking at as far as wide receivers coming in here. But we’re really excited about the guys we have too. I know Adam (Gase) and Breshad (Perriman) have had great talks recently. Obviously Jamison (Crowder) is a unbelievable slot player for us that we’re excited about. Josh Doctson coming in here, he can have an opportunity to compete. So, we feel like if the right opportunity presents itself at the position to add to that room, it can be a great thing.


On how he views the organization’s offensive tackle position right now and the draft class of offensive tackles…

Yeah, light waters here, the tackle size is a good class and I think with us right now, with George (Fant) coming in, I think he’s going to be an ideal fit athletically for what we’re doing in our scheme. A guy like Chuma (Edoga) who has a ton of abilities, he’s got unbelievable feet. He’s going to have an opportunity to compete for a starting spot. And then I mean I want to give a shout out to Conor McDermott too. I mean he was a tackle that we acquired from waivers last year, who came in, who busted his butt, grinded every day. Great work ethic, great personality. He was able to come in and start the last two games at offensive guard and play at a pretty good level. We were able to win those games because he played good ball. So I think like the wide out position with Manish’s last question, I think if we can find a guy at the right fit, that could come in and upgrade the tackle spot and help us, that’s going to be an interesting addition as well.


On if he anticipates ramping up efforts in free agency after the draft concludes…

Yeah, I think things are going to ramp up pretty quickly around the league with some of these guys that are still waiting for homes because, especially now that it’s changed in the past, free agent acquisitions countered against the compensatory formula out until May and June now. Now, it doesn’t count against your compensatory starting the Monday after the draft. So I think the market will pick right back up for free agent players the Monday after draft.

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