The New England Patriots draft picks from the second day held court with the media. Here's what they had to say.
60th CB Cyrus Jones
Did you play some nickel in college or were you on the outside more?
"I played nickel a good deal in practice but Coach Saban always wanted me on the outside so that's where I predominantly was in the season, and in games I was always pretty much trailing the top receiver for the opposite team, so they would line up on the outside the majority of the time, so that's where I'd find myself. I can definitely play nickel. It's no problem if I have to slide inside."
Do you enjoy the film study aspect of football?
"Yes, I love watching film. I used to get teased a lot at ‘Bama by my coaches saying I should have an office where their offices were because I was in the film room so much and up there almost just as much as they were. I love watching film and think that's the key to becoming a better player. There are a lot of players in this league that have physical gifts and talent but you know working hard off the field, I think that's what separates you."
What are your thoughts on watching the New England cornerbacks as a fan the past few years?
"They're just a hungry group. That's what I see when I watch, and you know they're smart. They go out there and they play with a chip on their shoulder every Sunday and that's exactly how I play. I can't wait to meet those guys and just try to earn their respect."
78th OL Joe Thuney
What position do you identify yourself with? What position do you think you're going to play in the NFL?
"I think I see myself as more of an interior guy: more as guard, center. If it gets to a pinch in the game, I can go at tackle but it's really wherever coach wants me to play. And I have experience at all five so wherever he sees me best, I think that's the best fit for me."
Why do you see yourself as a fit as a guard?
"Just on the interior, I feel more comfortable. I don't have the typical length of a typical NFL tackle but I feel like I move and pull and have the leverage on the interior."
Have the Patriots indicated what position they'd like you to play?
"They have not. Just going in there with an open mind and hoping for the best."
The Patriots just drafted Jacoby Brissett. What can you tell us about him?
"No way. That's awesome. Great leader, great teammate, loved playing for the guy. He did a really good job at NC State, and I couldn't be happier to hear that news."
Did you learn anything from your time with Brissett that makes you think that he will succeed as an NFL quarterback?
"He was always putting in extra time in the film room. He was there before practice, always before anyone else. He just is always so enthusiastic and always optimistic and positive. It was fun to play for him and he just exuded confidence."
91st QB Jacoby Brissett
How valuable was your experience with Charlie Weis during your time at Florida?
"I think it was tremendous. We simulated some of the stuff that the Patriots do now and it kind of gave me a little familiarity with some of the stuff when I went up there on my visit. I think he was instrumental to my learning curve in college and I definitely carried a lot of things that he instilled in me at Florida."
What does Bill Parcells mean to you and how did that relationship start?
"It started in high school. He has a house out here and he comes around my high school a lot and him and my high school coach, Jack Daniels, are real good friends and I got the privilege to meet him and he's been - I can't even describe what type of person he is and what he's meant to my life. Just him grooming me as a man and preparing me for tough times, hard times, good times. He's been so helpful to me throughout this process and just keeping my steady and keeping a good head on my shoulders and you know I just can't thank him enough."
Did they allow you to make checks at the line at North Carolina State?
"At times we had checks out to the run game and some protections as far as pass game, so I mean I'm sure when I get to New England it will be a little different, but I'll still take some of the same nuances and some of the same knowledge and be ready to learn from those guys."
96th DT Vincent Valentine
When were you first contacted by the Patriots? Was it prior to tonight?
"I actually talked to them at the Combine and then the next time I talked - I had a workout with Michael Lombardi and then I had a workout with [defensive line] coach [Brendan] Daly and then they flew me up for a pre-draft visit. It was definitely busy with the Pats and I mean I was excited. I thought I had a chance of them taking me but it worked out exactly how I wanted it to work out."
What have you seen from the Patriots' defensive line play over the past few years?
"They've been dominant. They have Hall of Fame guys, guys that are Pro Bowl, all those things. Just the Patriots as an organization are a great organization and top of the league obviously so it's always exciting to go to a team where you'll be able to compete for a Super Bowl right in the beginning of your career. I'm just excited to get in there and learn, soak up all the information that I can and just get better every day."
What do you feel your strengths are?
"I think I'm a big, stout guy. [I'm] definitely a good bull-rusher. I feel like I'm versatile like you guys said and so I could play at any position that the coaches put me in so I'm just ready to get to work. Whatever the coaches want me to do I'm willing to do it. I'm just ready for the ride."