Transcripts: Jordan Akins Press Conference (8-29-2020)

Could you talk about the camp TE Jordan Thomas has had especially with all the injuries he had last year and him being one of the stars of this camp?

"First and foremost, Jordan's come into camp in great shape. He's dropped about, I want to say, about 20-plus pounds. He's a lot faster. He knows a lot more mentally. He looks good overall. He's been rolling with the ones as well as with the twos. J.T., he looks like he's been on top of his game this offseason. He definitely didn't take no time off."

Head Coach and General Manager Bill O'Brien said no position has looked better than the tight ends this camp, how do you feel about your overall performance and what is it that's made you guys so good from top to bottom?

"Just competing. We all bring something different to the table. We have different types of game and we just make each other better. We don't down each other. We don't look at is as a competition. We just go out there and make each other better. We teach each other and we learn from each other. I think that's what keeps us going. We definitely want to make plays for the team so once our number is called, we want to be able to execute."

The other night after the scrimmage you had a discussion about social justice issues with WR Kenny Stills, DE J.J. Watt and S Michael Thomas addressing the team. What did you take away from that conversation and what do you think about some of the plans you can make going forward as a team?

"As of right now we're still working on that as a team. What I got from it is just that we're all on one accord. No one looks at each other differently just because of their skin color. So, we're on point right now. We're really focused on football right now and winning our first game. But that's still in the air right now."

Head Coach and General Manager Bill O'Brien and Offensive Coordinator / Quarterbacks Coach Tim Kelly have said your game has been more consistent this year. What did you do going into your third season here to make a big play every day and be able to contribute that way?

"Instead of just using my athleticism, I really just set aside and picked the brains of vets. I wanted to see how they think. Really, Darren Fells has been outstanding for me. I still talk to Jerell Adams, and I watched a lot of film. I kind of just found myself mentally, if that makes sense, for the game. I know my athleticism will speak for itself but that was my focus this offseason. I really was trying to see how the vets think and just put the athleticism and the mental together. It seems to be working out fine for me this year."

What are the things you find yourself and some of the other tight ends giving TE Kahale Warring advice about?

"With Kahale, man, I just tell him to have fun. Kahale has a lot of talent. We're similar in ways and we're different in ways. I think he overthinks sometimes, but I just always let him know, hey, this is still a game and you have to have fun. Don't overthink it. Don't beat yourself down, you're still learning. The more repetition you have, the better you'll be."

With all the protests going on with other pro teams, would you consider not playing in the season opener?

"Nah, not really, man. I'm here. I'm here to play ball. I think my political views are totally different. As far as that goes – as I mean by different, I try to separate my game from politics. I don't try to put both into two. While I'm in the building I'm a Texan."

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