HEAD COACH DAVID CULLEY
Will DB Justin Reid not be able to play this week due to a concussion?
"Yes, concussion. He will not be able to play this week. He is still in concussion protocol."
Will RB Rex Burkhead be out?
"There is a chance Rex could possibly play this week."
Do you have any additions to the COVID list?
"No additions. Just the ones that have already been reported."
How have you approached the COVID protocols this week and for the future?
"Once a guy gets COVID, the NFL has protocols that he has to go through. We go through it. All of our guys are vaccinated that have gotten COVID so the thing is we just move on and wait until they are able to pass the tests consecutively and see if they are able to get on the field or not. Other than that, the next man moves up."
Are there some players on the Reserve/COVID-19 List that you expect to play on Sunday?
"Well, I'm not really sure yet. We'll have a little bit more clarity on that tomorrow because of when some of those guys became COVID positive."
Who is available at the safety position for you?
"Right now, Eric (Murray) is available. Jonathan (Owens) is available. Those are guys that have been available. So, we'll just kind of move some guys around in that position as backups to help us out right there if we need it, and we just move on with it."
Can you talk about what some of the internal changes that have been made with the enhanced COVID-19 protocols?
"We basically went virtual starting yesterday. Everything is virtual as far as our meetings. We actually get to be on the field with them just like normal, except any time we're off the field is basically a virtual thing. Everybody has to wear a mask at all times other than when we're on the field. It's the same thing when we travel. But basically, we're just going with the protocols that they've assigned us to do."
DB LONNIE JOHNSON JR.
How are you dealing with the COVID situation as it becomes a problem again?
"We are in the business of the NFL and there is a lot going on the COVID stuff around the league. So, we just have to take care of it how we take care of it."
How much of the fact that you have been through this before makes it easier to deal with?
"We just know how to handle it now, the social distancing. That's about it."
What are your thoughts on having an expanded role and maybe starting again at cornerback?
"It's good that I am versatile. I'll go out there and play multiple positions and not be worried about it too much. Learning both of the positions and not going out there and try to focus on one. Just going out there and playing to the best of my ability whether it's at safety or corner."
What do you think about competing against Trevor Lawrence? What have you seen on tape since you guys played him in Week 1?
"The first game I didn't play, so I'm not sure what he's seen from me on film. But watching him on film I feel like he's getting better. He is still a rookie quarterback, so we just have to go out there and take advantage of the opportunities we get."
What is it like with being prepared for the opportunity to fill into multiple roles?
"Like I said with me playing both positions and if they struggle with any of the calls, I'm out there to help them out. I can make the checks from the corner position if I have to. I'm not really tripping on it if they are on my side. I got it. We all work together."
How are things working with the whole defensive unit?
"They are ready. Next man up mentality. At the end of the day, like I said, we are all working together so if we have to make checks from the outside, we will do that."
DB JONATHAN OWENS
What are your thoughts on your opportunity to play this weekend?
"I prepare every week as if I am going to go out there and play. Whenever the coaches do call my number and give me a more impactful role for team, I'm always prepared. Excited for the challenge and whatever they asked me to do, I'm ready to do it."
Is your confidence growing and are you more comfortable with more games playing defense under your belt?
"Absolutely. You go out there and like you said, you play more snaps, you get more comfortable, you think less when you are out there. It has been a while, probably since college before I have gotten a lot of defensive snaps. This year they have been slowly building me up. I went in for a couple of series one game and I played a big portion of the second half last game. Just building my confidence up slowly and like I said, I'm excited for the challenge."
What was it like throughout the year with guys on one-year deals? What are your expectations for the future?
"I kind of just worry about myself. I don't try to think too much into everyone's situation on the team. I just kind of make sure I do my job and whatever they ask of me so I continue to give the coaching staff and everyone else in the building confidence that I can go out there and perform and do my job. I try not to look into all of that and just stick to myself and do my roles on the team."
What's the feeling like amongst the players and yourself with having to deal with the COVID protocols again?
"It's been pretty crazy seeing everything around the league, but everybody is really trying to follow these protocols, social distance and make sure we are all safe, good hygiene, wash your hands and everything. It's been kind of crazy seeing the amount of COVID cases but we just kind of do what we can to help prevent the spread. So, just kind of stay safe and keep your mask on."
In terms of your style of play, how would you characterize your style of play and what do you bring to the table as a safety?
"Fast and physical. Play hard and do whatever the coaches ask of me. Do my job first, that's the biggest thing."
DL DEREK RIVERS
What has been your approach this season knowing you're on a one-year contract?
"It was a blessing. Being on a one-year deal, honestly, it was nothing but the grace of God that I'm still here, to be honest with you. It was a blessing. Once we signed here, I was excited to get back here, see some familiar faces and to still be playing. And then as the season went along, being on P-squad, that's an awesome place to be because you're just growing. You're going up against the ones every day and you serve. The team is only as good as the guys that you're going up against, servicing each other. It's kind of just serving one another and trying to make each other better."
With a lot of players on one-year contracts, how does that affect the locker room culture?
"I think it definitely brings a sense of similarity. It also brings a huge competitiveness, but we've got a great locker room. The D-line room, it's probably the funniest D-line room I've ever been in. We've got a lot of good character men in this locker room from every position, so to be honest with you, whenever we talk about it, it's more or less not so much in a, 'I'm trying to get this, I'm trying to get that,' which that can easily get to that. But for the most part, it's kind of just encouraging one another and trying to keep everybody going."
What is the level of concern among the players as COVID-19 has become a key issue again?
"It's definitely, I wouldn't say a shock, but any time there's change or something happens like that, obviously there's a little bit of, I wouldn't say concern. But for the most part it's kind of like alright, a little bit of a change of schedule. It's just something we have to adjust to. Since the new protocols came out yesterday, everybody's still been locked in on Jacksonville. There's nothing we can do. Like I said, it's just mask up, be careful what you're doing outside of the facility and get ready for Jacksonville."
Do you think what everyone has been through the last couple years helps you all deal with it now as it gets worse again?
"For sure. It's something that we've all been through before. When you've gone through something before, whether that being in your life or whatever it may be, when you see it again, you kind of have an idea of either how to adjust to it or you have that sense, like 'alright, I've been here before. Let's kind of get back into (it.)' I was talking to my wife about that the other day. This stuff's starting to come up. Let's start to wear masks when we're at the grocery store or we're doing whatever."
What went into your decision to sign through the 2022 season?
"Like I said, to God be the glory. It ain't nothing but the grace of God. I was excited that we have another year here. We built a great community of friends, family friends, people that we'd known beforehand. Just to be able to see some of the guys and those relationships, that's the biggest thing is when you come into a locker room in the NFL, a lot of times like yeah, if you won, it's cool. But a lot of times when you leave a team, you miss the people that you met there. Just grateful to be able to be around some of these men again and to come back. Obviously it's been a down year, but obviously next year come back and try to be better."
What is an example of how you all talk about being on one-year contracts?
"Shoot, I know for me personally, like I said, when we talk about one year deals it's kind of like, 'Alright, I'm only here for one year, so make the most of it.' From a relationship standpoint, these dudes here try to encourage and love on the folks that you see in front of you and enjoy the time that you're here, because a lot of times if you start looking too far forward you miss and are not present with the folks you see in front of you. You miss a lot of stuff. For me personally, it's just being present and loving on the folks in front of you."