It’s the old adage — veterans help young guys learn the game. Sometimes, veterans are a little resistant. After all, that guy is trying to take snaps away from you. He’s cutting into your livelihood. Veterans don’t want a rookie to be any quicker in taking their place.
Not so with Calais Campbell and Taven Bryan.
After training camp practice on Monday afternoon, Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone was asked what kind of difference a veteran like Campbell can be for a highly touted first round draft pick like Bryan. Marrone didn’t hesitate to explain:
“I think it is the second point, [learning how to be a pro]. I think players will look, but sometimes, skill levels don’t match. Height, weight, leverage, things of that nature. I think you get a little bit from the skill standpoint, the technique, but I think [Calais has helped Taven with] the way you go about your business, meaning how you show up, how you take care of your body, what you are doing to study, how you watch tape. I really think that is probably one of the toughest things that I have learned over the years. The best thing we can do as coaches is teach players how to watch tape. I know when I was a college coach and even in the NFL, they are watching the ball carrier, they are watching the player, they are watching it like a fan would. You have to be detailed of situations and how you watch it and how guys play. I think Calais [Campbell] brings a lot of that, along with Yannick [Ngakoue] and a lot of other guys. Malik [Jackson] has worked extremely hard. Marcell [Dareus] has been around, so we have a lot of veteran guys there that do a good job of making sure they are prepared.”
From the looks of the first few days of training camp, I’d say Bryan is off to a great start.
I can’t wait to send Calais a fruit basket after Taven’s first All-Pro season.