Philadelphia Eagles News

Special Teams Coordinator Rory Segrest

On what he has seen from the special teams: "More so than anything else, I think we've seen some leadership. We brought in some veteran guys through free agency and they're taking responsibility for that leadership role. Also, the returning guys that we've got there have done a nice job of stepping up and just encouraging and helping coach up some of the younger guys and getting them to where they need to be so we can have a good start."

On who the leaders are: "(LB) Rocky Boiman, (DE) Chris Clemons, you know, Q (S Quintin Mikell) stepped back into the role as he knows the leadership. Last year, he was really focusing on his defensive reps and, this year, I think he feels more comfortable with his defensive reps and he's able to give a little bit more attention back to special teams. Again, we've got some good leadership out of those guys."

On whether he expects Mikell to continue playing special teams during the season: "Yeah. Right now, we're at a point where we want to get the best guys on the field and we feel like we've got enough depth there that we'll be able to do that."

On how much depth special teams has compared to last year: "You know, a lot of that has to do with the offensive and defensive depth where we end up out there. From a safety standpoint, for example, last year, we ran into some injuries and we just couldn't afford to get those guys out there on every rep on defense and seeing every rep on special teams. Anytime you've got some depth, offensively and defensively, you've got some guys who can go in and give those guys a blow, then it gives them an opportunity to fill in, in some other spots."

On who the frontrunners are for kickoff return duties: "Kick return, probably the same leaders. You know, right now we're looking at (RB Lorenzo) Booker is probably going to be number one, and (S) Quintin Demps. (We've) still got (S) J.R. (Reed) and (RB Correll) Buckhalter taking some reps there and (WR) Jamal Jones as well."

On whether WR Jason Avant is the emergency holder: "Jason's been working on that for us since we brought (K/P) Richmond (McGee) in. We've also got (TE) Matt Schobel working in there, as well. We've tried to get a guy that could specifically be a right-footed holder. We ran into some issues obviously this morning with some footing. It's the first time Richmond's been able to work through some team reps and it was a tough position for him there. He had a little bit of slippage with his plant foot. He's been doing a nice job for us, so far, and I think, once we get a little cleaner field here, he'll hit some better balls."

On WR/PR DeSean Jackson and how much of his talent is practice and how much is pure skill: "I think it's a little bit of both. You have to know where your blocks are going to set up; where they're going to occur. And, at the same time, that's why we brought DeSean in here. He's an explosive guy. He's capable of giving us those big returns. It's a combination of both knowing where to be and, obviously, having the physical tools to get there."

On who else is working on punt returns: "Quintin Demps is behind him (Jackson). (Then) J.R., and (WR Frantz) Hardy."

On what he likes about Booker on kick returns: "He's got really good speed up the field. He can see the creases there. Same thing from a running back position, he knows how to read the scheme, he knows where to be and he's got the ability to get there."

On how well he can evaluate the return game without full-contact action: "The only difference, we try to keep practices as up-tempo as we can get; as live as we can get with the exception of tackling. That would probably be the biggest issue. The biggest question we've got on Booker right now is what's he going to do when he gets hit? Is he going to break some tackles for us out there? He's definitely got the ability to give us the big return, but is he going to be able to break tackles once he gets hit?"

On what qualities he looks for in players that would make them good special teams players: "I go around and look at all the different drills there. You can really see, both on offense and defense and special teams as well, you can see how guys are going to work in space, how they're going to work in closed quarters there. Absolutely, I try to evaluate all those situations."

On whether a field goal was blocked today: "Yeah they did. Again, that was a situation where Richmond slipped a little bit and didn't get much trajectory on the ball."

On who blocked it: "I'm not sure."

On whether he's spoken to K David Akers about long attempts after last year: "Yeah, we've moved on. It's one of those deals where we know Dave can get the job done. We had to work through some things last year. We ran into a new snapper with (LS) Jon (Dorenbos) coming in. The year before, we had (former Eagles TE/LS Mike) Bartrum in there. We had a couple extra guys during training camp. We just didn't have that continuity. This year, we've got Jon snapping, (P) Sav (Rocca) holding, Dave kicking. Those guys have really gotten into a good rhythm here."

On how other rookies are fitting in on special teams: "They've done a nice job. We've had some linebackers, receivers, some DBs (defensive backs) there, all those guys are in the learning stages right now. I wouldn't say there's any one guy who's just jumped out, but they're learning the system. We've got some good ability there."

On whether he knew last year how good LB Stewart Bradley would be on special teams: "He was a rookie last year. Anytime you've got a bunch of rookies on the field, they're going to make mistakes. Stewart made some mistakes last year, but he obviously, again, he had that physical ability. He got better as the year went along. From a physical standpoint, sure we knew he would be there, but it's just like on offense and defense, young guys make mistakes and that's what occurred last year on special teams a little bit."

On LBs Joe Mays and Andy Studebaker: "Good athleticism, guys that can really develop into some good players."

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