June 28, 2012
Countdown to kickoff: Mike Archer Q&A, part II
Outside of the linebackers - health permitting - it seems like the defense is in good shape, at least on paper.
"To me, the secondary is where we are experienced. We moved Dontae Johnson to cornerback in the spring. Dontae is one of our best players; we've got to get Dontae on the field more, other than in the nickel package. That's why we moved him to corner, he's going to play corner, he's going to play nickel, and he's going to play safety. He's one of our more productive guys; he's one of our smartest guys. In evaluating our personnel in the offseason, one of the things we said was we have to get him on the field more. He's not going to be off the field very much - he's either going to be at safety, nickel or corner. We play so much nickel now because of what people do and he's going to play corner because he's going to create position competition there.
"On the defensive line, I think we're going to be OK there. We've got Cato-Bishop, McKay Frandsen, Slay, Norman, we've got some depth there. Up front, we're probably going to have the most depth at end. At tackle, I'm still concerned. We played guys last year that weren't ready to play - T.Y. McGill wasn't ready to play, Thomas Teal wasn't ready to play, but they played out of necessity because of injuries. Now, that has to become a positive. McGill has to get better, Teal has to get better. Now, the thing that McGill did in the spring game - when he chased Asa Watson down - that was impressive and that shows you what he's got, ability-wise. Now, he has to do it on a consistent basis. He has to do it, [Deylan] Buntyn has to do it, [A.J.] Ferguson has to do it.
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