First-round draft pick Jarvis Jones had his first day today in a Steelers practice uniform -- wearing no. 95 no less; historically not a bad number for Georgian 3-4 edge rushers for the Steelers -- but the rookie linebacker already is a seasoned vet in dealing with the media. Here's what he had to say after the first day of rookie camp.
Does he expect to be the opening week starter?
"It’s a long way from now. The most important thing is for me to come out here and try to get in the best shape I can and learn this system and do what the coaches ask me to do. They’re going to make their decision. It’s not up to me. So I’m just going to come out here and give it everything I got and at the end of the day they’re going to make the final decision.
"It’s a lot of hard work. I’m fresh out of college. That’s my dream. Any way I can help my team, that’s what I’m going to do whether I’m a starter or not. Just come out here every day and give it my all. ... I’ve got a lot of stuff to catch up on to even be worried about starting right now. Right now I’m just trying to control what I can and that’s learning the system and be in the best shape I can."
What's he think of the defensive playbook?
"It’s alright. I played a 3-4 in college so I kind of get the concept. They do it kinda different than what we did. I think I’ll be fine."
Has he talked to LaMarr Woodley?
"He called me told me good luck on the night I got drafted, him and Troy, Ike all those guys called me and congratulated me. I haven’t met him in person yet but I’m sure I’ll get up under those guys wings and try to learn everything I can."
On "falling" to no. 17 in the draft
"I landed right where I wanted to be. I don’t think [anything] of it. This team chose me for a reason, because they wanted me to be here. And I fully accept that those [other] teams passed on me for a reason – they didn’t want me to be there so I fully accept that. I’m just going to continue to get better, do everything my coaches ask me to do and just love being a Pittsburgh Steeler."
Any surprises about Pittsburgh?
"I don’t think there’s any surprises. They’re about winning. They’re about playing hard-nosed defense and getting after it down after down. I think im getting the ‘realistic’ of it. I see it and I know what it means. Our coaches today I got the first taste of it."
Was Dick LeBeau tough today?
"Nah, he's more chill, more laid back. He understand it’s our first day. I think they did a great job of implementing what we was coming out here to do because the guys picked up on it well and we flew around and had fun. Today was a good start."
Is he a vocal guy in the lockerroom or on the field?
"I’m more quiet. I’ve never been a vocal guy. I just come out here work hard. I always try to motivate my teammates. Not really [one of these guys that want to be in the spotlight. Never been that, never will. I just want to come out and make plays and enjoy this game. I’m very passionate about it, its something I’m dedicated to – that’s how I want to start and continue my career. I,ve never been the guy that hoots and hollers and jumps around for attention. [i] jjst come out here and try and make plays and help my team."
On feeling any pressure to replace James Harrison:
"I don’t compare myself in [any] way to James Harrison. Great player. I respect him. Never met him. I love his game. I wouldn’t mind being an impact player like James Harrison."