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Game Vs. Panthers: FS Brian Dawkins

On which hit was harder, the one he had on the mascot before the game or the hit on Carolina WR Muhsin Muhammad: "(The mascot) was in the line of fire; you can't be in that – that's a bad position to be in right before game time. (It) tells you –it was just one of those bang-bang plays (with Muhammad). As much as it is a violent sport, especially a guy that I love and have played against so many times, you don't want him to be injured."

On how the play unfolded for him: "Like bang-bang. I did my read, my progression, I saw the ball up in the air, and I just tried to get it out."

On whether the hit made him feel like he is ready for the regular season: "I need those types of plays. A lot of times I don't get a lot of work at camp as far as contact goes. Some of the live drills, the d-line does such a great job that I don't get a chance to have a lot of contact. I need as much contact as I can get through the preseason so when the first game comes around, I'm not gun-shy, so to speak."

On how pleased he is with how the first defensive unit played today: "I thought we did some good things out there. After that long drive –you want to take back; you don't want the opportunity to give up long drives. That's two weeks that we've given up a long drive. They didn't score this week, but Pittsburgh did last week. That's something that we can work on. All in all we did a pretty good job."

On whether S Quintin Demps has the playmaking ability in the return game: "Oh yeah. You've seen that early. He's just one of those guys that has a nose for the ball. You saw what he can do. He's a pretty dog-gone returner, too."

On whether you can teach someone to have a nose for the ball: "No. I don't know if you can teach somebody to do it. You either want to do it or you don't. To be able to shy away from it – sometimes you get the worst at the other end of it, the pain end of it, so knowing that you still have to stick your nose in it, some guys will shy away from it. It's yet to be seen if that's the type of guy that (Demps) is. I think he's the guy that's going to stick his nose in there every time."

On whether he feels like he's where he needs to be at this point: "Yeah. In every game, for me, it's like you're revving up the engine a little more every game. First game, you're just cranking up the car and getting used to it again. This game you kind of rev the engine up, and a little playing time this next game, so by the first game the engine is completely warm, and I'll be ready to roll."

On his impression of WR DeSean Jackson so far: "He's a very smooth route runner. He comes out of his breaks very quick. He has a real nice little step-back once he catches the ball. He's able to make the first guy miss if he's able to turn around. He definitely has some deep speed, definitely."

On whether the 30-plus club allowed him to be fresh for this game: "Definitely, no doubt. It was a tremendous advantage for us to be able to have that. To have those days off, to be able to rest up, to be able to get our legs back under us and stretch or whatever we need to do. Just to be able to take the day off to recover was a huge, huge thing for all of us, and I would say that I could speak for everybody in that respect."

On whether he is concerned with the special teams units: "No. I saw some good things, I don't know what you guys are seeing, but I saw some good things for the return game. We have two, I would say two pretty good returners back there with DeSean or Demps. Just back there, we have two pretty big-time playmakers back there, so it's going to be up to us, whoever is going to be on the hold up teams, to make sure that we get those guys some room and let them run. When we get those things ironed out, I can expect some big plays from those guys.

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