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Eric Decker: Consistency; Breno Giacomini: Nastiness

Posted Mar 15, 2014

Transcripts of Friday conference calls with Jets’ First Two UFA Signees

WR ERIC DECKER

On when the Jets first reached out to him…

Saturday is when things got started. My agent reached out to me and said that the Jets were interested. Tuesday, we set up a visit with them, and I had a great time. I was there all day Wednesday I had a chance to see the office, the staff, the facility and the surrounding communities and really enjoyed my visit.

On what he considered attractive about the Jets…

I have a lot of respect for the organization. I think the history speaks for itself. I think also the culture that they have there, what John Idzik is doing, and really the coaching staff again, the owner. I think New York, New Jersey is underrated. I got a week to spend out there and really, it’s a beautiful place. They treat their coaching staff and their players first-class and I think that’s important. I want to be part of a culture that wants to win, that wants to do big things. That was definitely an attraction for me.

On if he views his role as being the Jets' No. 1 receiver…

My opinion is I don’t think there are numbers or roles for certain people. I think everyone has a big role in the success of a football team. There are 11 guys on the field at a time. There is not just one guy that makes the difference. It’s going to be everyone together making the difference. I just hope to be a positive asset for this team and help from my experience, be a good teammate in the locker room, be a leader in the meeting rooms, on the field and do what I can to help this team win football games.

On responding to the analysis that his success is tied to playing with Peyton Manning…

As a player, as a competitor, obviously I enjoyed playing with Peyton Manning. He’s a future Hall of Famer. He’s a guy that has had longevity and had success for a long period of time. I learned a lot from him. I had a lot of opportunities with him.

I think my play and my game will be looked at the end of my career by how consistent I’ve been. That’s something that’s important to me is being durable, being consistent, being reliable, and I hope to do that here. Did he help? Of course he helped. He’s a future Hall of Famer, but I think I am also a good football player. I think my skill set and my assets can help a team win football games, that’s why I am excited to be here in New York.

On going from Denver’s passing offense to the Jets' passing offense…

I feel like the New York Jets have given me the most respect, have welcomed me into their building and that’s important to me. I want to be an asset to a team and they expressed that with me. I think this team has a lot of potential. It’s a young football team and I feel like I’ve always played the underdog role throughout my life, throughout my football career, now, college and high school and I am motivated to help this team win football games. To me that’s the most important thing, joining a culture that wants to do that. I enjoyed my time in Denver, but I am excited about this opportunity of being a teammate for the New York Jets.

On if Denver made him an offer to return…

There was no initial offer from them. That’s what I really enjoyed about New York is they saw me as an asset. They respect me as a football player. I enjoyed their company, I enjoy what they’re doing with the organization and that’s why I am a part of the New York Jets.

On if he was disappointed that Denver didn’t make an effort to sign him…

I understand that it’s a business. They felt like they had certain decisions that they wanted to make. There is a salary cap on every team and they have to make those kinds of decisions. It just didn’t work out. Again, I’m excited to be here in New York. I think this is an amazing city, an amazing organization and a great opportunity for me.

On what he can bring from playing in Denver that will help the Jets' young offense…

My goal is to take the knowledge and the preparation that I’ve learned these last four years with some great coaches, with a great quarterback and share that with my teammates. I think you win football games between Wednesday and Saturday and the preparation that we did as an offense in Denver, can be done in New York. Obviously my knowledge, looking into the different offenses that I’ve played in, on the field, in the film study room, those things I can share with my fellow receivers, with my team that will hopefully help bring along that knowledge and help their games as well.

On if New York being the No. 1 media market was a factor in his decision…

Honestly, my priority when I was visiting was football. I wanted to do what’s best for me as a football player and this organization offered that. Obviously, being in the biggest, the best city in the country offers other opportunities, but what my mindset was is what’s good for me from a football standpoint.

On doing his research on Geno Smith before signing with the Jets…

My comment was just from film of last year. I watched the Jets and kind of what their offense schematically was. Geno was at quarterback and I was impressed with his development. Overall that is a personnel decision. That is something that isn’t in my hands or is my decision. I just figured my assets as a receiver would fit well with the New York Jets.

On if he reached out to Tim Tebow about his experience with the Jets…

I reached out to a couple of guys. I did not reach out to Tim about that. He was a teammate of mine obviously and a great guy. He spent some time here, but I didn’t get a chance to reach out to him.

On which other teams showed interest in him outside of the Jets…

There were some other teams that had interest and some other visits that were a possibility, but when I came here I just felt at home and I wanted to make my decision and that is what I did. The most important thing to me is that I am a New York Jet now.

On his impression of Coach Ryan now and before he came on his visit…

Getting to meet him for the first time on this visit, he is just a genuine guy. What I have seen before was that he is a competitor. He is a fierce competitor, he loves his guys. That is what I got to find out. He really, truly cares about his coaches, about his players. He is a player’s coach and I respect that a lot. He is a guy that wants to make his players feel comfortable and confident so that you let loose and play with full confidence on Sundays.

On his wife’s reaction to him joining the Jets…

She is excited. She obviously wants what’s best for me in my profession. She spent a lot of time in New York with her career when she was younger and she is excited again to have an opportunity to work now again and to be able to have some resources and things. I think that overall it is a great decision and place for us as a family and career wise.

On the emotions of getting an offer from the Jets and expecting his first child…

Yes, I feel like I have a lot going on. Free agency is obviously a stressful time. The unknown and the possible change is always a fear for some and maybe anxiety for some. I figured when I got here in New York on Wednesday I felt good. I felt at home. I felt at ease. That was really important to me. When I had to make a decision to play with the Jets organization it was almost a sigh of relief. To just have that process over with and get back to my wife, take care of her and get ready for this newborn because family for me is my priority. I am so excited to bring a little girl into this world and start a family of my own.

On if becoming familiar with the area during Super Bowl week helped him make a decision….

It definitely did not hurt. Obviously, I have not spent much time in New Jersey beforehand and the perceptions that you hear about the place, that it is overcrowded and all of this stuff, it really changed my mind when I got to go to the facility and saw the surrounding communities. I think you get the best of both worlds. You get to have, if you want, that suburban-type lifestyle and you get to drive into the best city or take a train. You can have the best of both worlds. That is a great thing to have. I would say that that week helped to just get comfortable and understand the area a lot better.

On the Super Bowl and what kept his production down that day…

It was a tough game. I think from the start, we got behind the eightball. I think we had like seven plays in the first quarter. The opportunities as an offense were down. When you get behind, it gets tougher and they are teeing off. They played with a lot of energy. We turned the ball over. We did some things that did not allow us to be productive.

From a personal standpoint, I wish I would have played a better football game. I wish I would have been more productive. Unfortunately sometimes that happens, that whole experience Super Bowl week as far as what it takes to get to a Super Bowl, what the experience is like and the game itself. At that stage, momentum is huge and every play is huge. I just take it as a learning experience and plan to get back.

On if he or Jeff Cumberland will wear uniform No. 87…

That is a great question. I reached out to Jeff and asked him how dedicated he was to the number. I guess we are going to kind of negotiate what we are going to do with the number. Obviously, he has been there for his four-year tenure. I think that is something that is up, maybe in the air and we can negotiate. Otherwise I will have to find a new home, a new number.

On if he plans on carpooling with teammates to the games with the Jets like he did in Denver…

Well I think that off-the-field relationship is important to build camaraderie, that trust in one another whether it is going to grab dinner together or doing something off the field. That bond is big on the field. When you’re in the heat of the battle, you know you can trust that person because you have a relationship with them off the field and in the locker room.

I think, again, that is why this culture at the Jets organization was huge for me. They’re building that. It is important for everyone to be brothers. That is what wins football games. It is not individuals. It is a team. I hope to build personal relationships with all the guys in the locker room.

T BRENO GIACOMINI

On when the Jets first contacted him…

They called me a few hours after free agency started. But you know I couldn’t really break it down for you guys because I let my agent handle all that business stuff. I kind of stay out of it.

On what he brings to the team…

I think I like to play pretty physical. I know that’s the mentality that they have here, so I’m just going to try to play my role and get better every single day. I’m just trying to bring a little bit of nastiness that I have in me and just play like an O-lineman should play.

On if other teams were pursuing him…

There were a few other teams that were interested, but once again I let my agent handle all the business.

On what he knows about C Nick Mangold and T D’Brickashaw Ferguson…

I know they’re pretty good players. There’s a lot of respect for those guys around the league, especially in the O-line rooms, and I know they’ve got some great leadership so I’m excited to come here and learn from those two for sure and maybe just show them what I’ve got a little bit. It’s good to come into a room with two great leaders like that.

On the biggest selling point on deciding to come to the Jets…

I like the way they play. We played them. I like their defense. We’re on the East Coast so I’m close to home now, and my past relationship with John Idzik has been really good, so that was one of the main things to come over here and try to help this team win.

On how close he thinks the Jets are to being a playoff team…

They were 8-8 last year, so they’re a few games out. The main goal I think would be to win the division first and get a playoff win at home. I think they’re pretty close. They’re starting to load up a little bit here. The defense is pretty good, so if you can play some defense and run the ball, you can get to the playoffs.

On his relationship with Idzik…

When I got to Seattle, I was kind of up and down on the practice squad, off and on, so there was a lot of paperwork to sign, so I was always with John Idzik signing all that stuff. So I just know he’s a great guy, he loves football and he’s all about competition. He wants to win too. He came from a great program just like I did a few years back. I’m just happy to be here with him and the rest of the Jets.

On bringing his Super Bowl experience to the team…

Just the grind of every day. Every week is literally a championship week because, for example, two years back we lost the division because of half a game. So we’ve got to treat every game like it pretty much is a playoff game. And I like to work hard, so just my work ethic and all that stuff. I hear these guys are great teammates to each other and they love to work, so I think I’m going to fit right in.

On if Seattle wanted him back…

I don’t know. I’m sure they wanted me back, but as far as contracts and talks like that, I don’t know I’m not sure. I let my agent handle that.

On if he grew up a Patriots fan…

I can say that I liked football growing up, yes. Yeah, I was. I liked Drew Bledsoe a lot growing up.

On comparing Pete Carroll to Rex Ryan…

I can’t really compare them because I’ve only met Rex for about half an hour. I sat down with him for a little bit, so I can’t really compare those two. I just know that they’re great coaches and players love to play for them.

On the passion he sees from Rex…

Yeah, that’s something that I think every coach should have. It’s kind of cool, I watched a highlight, and Rex was on it a few different times just going nuts. I don’t know if it was after a pick-six or after a touchdown, whatever it was, you could see that there was a lot of passion there. He comes from a football family so it’s built in him. I love that. That’s another reason why I came here.

On if being in the area for Super Bowl week influenced his decision to join the Jets…

No. I kind of know New York a little bit, being from the East Coast. It’s just a little bit closer to home. That’s really the only factor because I know a few guys from New Jersey and all that growing up, went to school with a few guys from Don Bosco, so I kind of knew about the area a little bit and the city is great.

On if the Jets-Patriots rivalry will be extra special for him…

I kind of learned to control those emotions already. I played them once and I’ve been around a little bit in the league. Maybe after the game, after we win, it will be a lot better to tell my friends and family to kick some rocks or something, you know what I mean? It will definitely be fun after we win that game.

On the Jets’ running back situation…

I know Bilal Powell from Louisville and Chris Ivory, too. For us as an offensive line, it doesn’t matter really who’s running the ball, I’m still going to try to bury my guy every single play and then get up and celebrate when my guy is in the end zone. So Marshawn [Lynch], he is who he is, he’s a great runner, but realistically, man, it doesn’t matter who’s throwing the ball, who’s catching the ball, or who’s running the ball. I’m just going to try to do my job as best as I can to help this team win.

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