- Paul Kuharsky, ESPN Staff Writer
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The Jaguars kindly provided a transcript of Aaron Kampman's chat with the Jacksonville media Monday.
Here are some highlights with some of my thoughts.
On playing on the right against left tackles: “Rushing the quarterback is rushing the quarterback. The biggest difference is your right tackle is your heavier guy who you run the football toward his side, and the left tackle is more athletic with not as much weight in their pants kind of guy. For example, in Minnesota, Jared Allen was a left end and then he goes to Minnesota and becomes and right end and has some success. I’m a leverage rusher, I’m a throw a fastball, get in your face kind of rusher. I’m not going to try to run around guys. I believe in collapsing the pocket and that’s how you get to the quarterback. I look forward to going against left tackles. …I don’t know what I can say schematically, but we have talked about right end. There is the capability of playing both, and I have done both in my career.”
Kuharsky says: For $11 million guaranteed, the Jaguars need a guy for the right side. Derrick Harvey takes too much heat, but he’s a good player provided he can play the left and isn’t looked to as the primary pass-rusher. A healthy Kampman creates that possibility, strengthening the team at two spots.
On his recovery from a torn ACL in his left knee: “…Looking at the MRI after it happened I was very encouraged with how things are progressing. I can’t tell you how good it’s been. I’m excited about getting back and being 100 percent… It has come along very well.”
Kuharsky says: Seeing will be believing, but the Jaguars weren’t offering up a four-year, $26 million contract unless their medical people were convinced his knee will be fine.
On owner Wayne Weaver: “What I have found is that usually, whether you’re talking about a church, a business, a team, whatever, the leader of the organization’s characteristics trickle down. I was very impressed with Mr. Weaver in the short time we got together. I had already heard some great things about him. Then I met with [general manager] Gene Smith, and then Coach Del Rio, and then defensive coordinator Mel Tucker. And I saw all the way through people that were interested in values, and character, and doing things the right way. I can get on board with that. That’s how I’ve been raised and what I believe in and hopefully I can add to that.”
Kuharsky says: This is just the sort of thing Smith wants to hear from new acquisitions. Values, character and doing things the right way are the hallmarks of his regime so far and the meat of this snippet could easily come from an interview with Smith.
On how quickly he can have an impact: “It depends on how you define impact. I’m the same guy. The first time I signed a contract with Green Bay it was a lot more than I made as a rookie. With that come expectations. I’ll give the same answer I gave then, and that is I’m still the same guy. I believe the mark of a champion is consistency, and so I’ll try to be a guy that is very consistent. I think respect is earned, and I’ll try to be the same guy every day. I think that can create impact. Guys begin to understand who you are, and how you go about your business. Over time my experience has been that respect is given, and then you have more opportunity to influence.”
“…I think I can help; I hope I can help. I’ve been on a very young team in Green Bay. What I have learned is that with the great teams I have been a part of, they care for one another. That is how you build consistency and you build championships over time, you’re consistently good. Hopefully I will have an opportunity to get to know this locker room and over time develop that respect to where I can provide a positive influence.”
Kuharsky says: The Jaguars purchased a pass-rusher and leadership here. The defense needs more of both. If he’s able to be the first he’ll definitely earn a platform to give them the second.