Philadelphia Eagles News

Head Coach Andy Reid

Opening remarks: "So in the second round we took [S] Jaiquawn Jarrett from Temple and then in the third round we took Curtis Marsh who's a cornerback from Utah State. The thing we liked about Jaiquawn was he has all the intangibles so you're getting a good, solid, smart guy. [He] made all of the defensive calls at Temple. And then you're getting a very explosive hitter; one of the more intimidating, if not the most intimidating safety in this draft. When you talk about people who can come up and smack you, he'll come up and smack you. And he loves to play the game. So again, another solid, solid choice as far as being a good football player, somebody who loves to play the game and is tough.

"Curtis Marsh is a corner that had been a running back that they moved over to corner and he's played a couple seasons at corner. And I'm close with their head coach there and I've had an opportunity to talk to him just on Curtis's upside. What you're getting with Curtis is big, strong, physical, fast, and very, very intelligent cornerback who doesn't have quite as much experience as some of the other guys in the draft. But we feel like, with our coaching here and his athletic ability, we'll really develop him into a fine football player and have a starter eventually here for the Philadelphia Eagles. So all in all we feel very good about these picks and we feel again, they're quality guys, and they're tough guys, and they're good football players, and that's what we're looking for. And again, my compliments go out to [general manager] Howie [Roseman] and [Director of Player Personnel] Ryan Grigson and Ryan's army of scouts there and the great job in which they've done finding these guys, targeting them, and then going and getting them."

On whether he feels Jarrett and Marsh went at the right time in the draft: "You know, that's a good question because Howie and I were talking about it. What you saw in that second round – we didn't feel that the second round was necessarily as strong as it has been in the past. So what you saw people doing is they either moved around a little bit or they targeted a guy they like for their system and they went and got him; good, solid, hard-nosed football players. And that's what we think we got here. And so, who knows if [Jaiquawn Jarrett] would have fallen any further. The kid from UCLA [S Rahim Morris] went [and] this is the next guy up. So it really came down to who needed a safety who's willing to pull the trigger. Is he very worthy of that position? Absolutely. And then same way with the third round, there. We moved around a little bit, moved down, were able to pick up Marsh and we just think he fits into our system.

"I know [defensive coordinator] Juan Castillo and [Secondary/Cornerbacks Coach] Johnnie [Lynn] really like him. And so I think we all had very high grades on him, second round potential, but somebody who had fallen into that third round. There were a handful of corners sitting there that I think are good, quality players that can help you out. But we felt that this kid's upside was good enough to be a starter for the Philadelphia Eagles. Also, his father played in the league. I forgot to mention that."

On whether Marsh is more of a project: "No, I think he's past that. He was invited to the Senior Bowl, played in that, and so I wouldn't consider him a project. But I'm giving you reasons why he was in that third round. And I think one of the reasons is because he converted positions and he just doesn't have as many snaps at the corner position as some of the other guys do. It was interesting what their coach told me about him. When he was hired there he had been a running back and he actually went to the coach and said, 'Hey, listen, I know we're short on corners. We don't have a lot of guys. Would you mind if I jumped over there and tried it out?' And he started from that day on and just did a heckuva job. He's a phenomenal athlete. I think when you see him you'll just go, 'Alright, I see why you did this.' And when you get to see him out playing I think you'll understand that."

On whether Marsh or Jarrett have the potential as return guys: "Well, I mean, you guys know Jarrett was the special teams player of the year and all that stuff and Marsh likewise played special teams. They're not return guys but they're good special teams players."

On whether Marsh is strictly a cornerback and Jarrett is strictly a safety: "Yes. I saw where Jarrett was asked the question and we talked to him about corner. No, he's a safety. And I mean he's one of those – it's not fair to compare him to [former Eagles safety] Brian Dawkins, but they're the same stature; size, same speed and they both will torch you. [They're] different personalities, different guys, but I don't think you want to run over the middle on either one of them. They'll both blow you up."

On whether the secondary is being addressed as a need because of last year's problems in the red zone: "I haven't gone that far. Listen, I'm just trying along with Howie to accumulate good, solid football players that are tough here and that are good people and smart and those types of things. And these guys fit that mold. They're in a position – I think we have a good, young secondary there and these guys add some depth to that."

On whether free agency coming after the draft this year allows him to go after depth in the draft and needs during free agency: "Well listen, I'm going to tell you the same thing I think Howie told you. I've told my staff this and I might have even mentioned it yesterday. But this is just a part of the whole so we've always banked on going in and getting good football players, and that's what we're trying to do. We feel like we did it here. We also know that somewhere along the line free agency is going to come about. And wherever we would feel that we need somebody we could always look at that. But again, these are quality players and we have quality players here. This presents great competition and good youth. And you know how this whole thing works; you build your team through the draft, and then you kind of fill in holes with free agency, knowing that free agency the odds of success have not been great over the years statistically. But you keep the number down in Free Agency and you try to build it this way with the draft."

On whether he was confident Marsh would last five more picks after they traded down: "This is what I was saying earlier – that you don't know in this draft. I mean there are players coming off [the board] that I'm telling you people because of that second round, again not that there weren't a number of great players there, felt that they feel the third and fourth rounds are maybe a little thicker in quality. So you're seeing players come off of there that you really didn't expect to come off, but it's because people liked them. So you get there and you find a solid guy that you like and you go take care of business. And the safety position wasn't the deepest position on I think anybody's board. We thought that Jaiquawn was just a tremendous football player so that to me was a slam dunk. We brought him over here [and] we worked him out. I feel like I have fairly close connections to Temple so I kind of know what this kid's about and you can't find a single thing negative about this kid here. I mean [former Temple coach] Al [Golden] will tell you that this is one of the two kids that helped him turn that football program around at Temple. And what a compliment that is to him. Not that he doesn't praise all of the guys that helped him build that thing but he said this kid here was one of the primary leaders of that crew that helped turn that program around."

On whether Oregon State defensive tackle Stephen Paea was on the Eagles radar: "Yeah, we did like him. He's a good football player."

On whether today he was able to give the players that showed up to the complex playbooks and talk to them about the season: "Well, you give them anything we needed to give them – offseason program and so on. So we were able to talk to them. And the coaches that have new things they wanted to present were able to talk to them. So it worked out."

On whether he has any idea when he will see the players again: "I don't. Listen, I'm taking it day by day just like I think you guys are. And it was nice to see them here, but I also understand the process that everybody's going through to, again, make this thing right for both sides."

On whether he called QB Kevin Kolb today: "I told you I've tried to talk to a few of the players. Actually, Kevin reached out to me. He has connections with our first pick, [G] Danny's [Watkins] coach that was also his coach. So he texted me and let me know that his coach sends him with the highest praise and just thinks that was a heckuva pick. So we were able to talk."

On whether Utah State's defense is similar to the Eagles defensive scheme: "Well, this is what you saw there. They throw the ball a lot in that conference so you have plenty of snaps of throws. And you saw him in press coverage, which he's very good at; he's so big and physical that he's very good at that. But you also got to see him in off-coverage and you got to see him a little bit inside, or inside receivers. So they do, I'm guessing out West in that conference they do a little bit of throwing the football so you get to see him against pretty good competition and also doing similar things that we do. Terminology-wise isn't the same. It's not the same."

On whether trying to get younger in the secondary is a conscious decision: "Well, younger and deeper is what you're looking at so you need depth there and flexibility. So this gives us another two good young players that really have some qualities. With the two safeties, Howie and I were looking for something special there, and really we have three or four of these guys back there that we feel pretty good about. But Jaiquawn did all of the calls. He made all of the adjustments. He has what I consider tremendous football knowledge and great retention and I think he's just naturally a smart guy – team captain, graduated [and] all those intangible things. But on the football field he's able to translate as smarts and make the adjustments that need to be made on that back end that are so crucial.

"So you use that term 'he never puts you in a bad position'. And as you know, offenses in this league are crazy by formation, by motion, by shifts, and you need a quarterback back there that can move you around a little bit and get you lined up. And he's done that. He's done it well. He's gotten high praise from all of his coaches with it. He's one of those guys that you have to kick out of the office because he wants to know everything, and you need that back there, a quarterback-type back there. And I think we've got a couple of those guys back there that we feel pretty good about."

On whether the Eagles are going to bring back free agent S Quintin Mikell: "Yeah, we really haven't even gone there with all that. Listen, this is a crazy time right now with all that. Howie and I will sit down and we'll figure that all out but right now this gives us some good youth back there."

On whether Jarrett's ability to hit was what sets him apart: "Well, listen you guys have more knowledge of him than you do these other guys because he's right here. So I'm sure you've all seen him play and he's one of those guys that you go watch him play and he jumps out at you. I mean, he just crushes people. And I know that's not the National Football League but I know he did that in high school. I know he transferred that to the college level. And I'd expect him to transfer that to this level. He's a big time hitter."

On what he foresees for the latter rounds: "It's too hard to tell right now the way things are going right now but I think there's talent. Like I told you I thought the third and fourth round had some solid talent in there, and I think when we get to that fifth round and we see that some guys have fallen or whatever that's going to be a good, solid round for us too. So we were able to pick up a sixth round pick that we didn't have when we were working Curtis's thing there with the [Baltimore] Ravens. I think we'll finish strong. Will we move around a little bit? I don't know that yet. I'll have to tell you tomorrow when things get cooking."

On whether he keeps tabs on the teams that drafted a quarterback for a possible Kolb trade: "I watch where they all go. Right now you can kind of eliminate that from your mind because there's nothing you can do about it right now. You just have to kind of see how things fall and go from there. Do I sit there and go, 'Oh my goodness that guy went here.' I don't do that. That's not where I'm at. I'm too focused in on what's happening at the moment here with your own picks."

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