Marc Mariani was on The Wake-Up Zone here in Nashville yesterday morning. You can read the interview after the jump.How's it going this morning?
Good. I am about to jump in the weight room with Mr. Watterson. You know how fun that can be. I am sure we are going to do something crazy like usual. I am looking forward to it.
What's it like being around that guy every day?
I love it. He brings an energy every day that not too many people have. Like on a day like today where we are dragging a little bit he will get us rolling. He'll get us out of bad quick.
How do you make it through camp when it is so hot?
I just kind of forget what day it is and how far into camp we are. I just try to take it day by day because on a day like this when we have three and a half more weeks of this it's not very promising. It's long and hot, but we all know it is coming every summer. It is the longest part of the year, but once we get to Sundays it goes quick.
How quick is Chris Palmer going with the installation?
It's been intense. We are jamming three months in about a month a day. Once we get it all in, as many times as we may miss something the first few days, we will hit the ground running and take off from there. It's been really quick. It's been tough to keep up but we are trying.
Do you compare it to the terminology from Dinger last year?
There's a little bit of that, but there are tons of offenses in this league and the words can be similar. It's tough to remember when you do it that way. I just try to forget everything and build from ground zero. Every day it is getting easier, but it has been a challenge for sure so far.
What do you feel like you have to do to be an effective receiver?
I felt like I learned a lot in my first year. One of the biggest things that stuck out to me is there is no more of the being bigger and faster than everyone else. You really have to be a technician and do the little things right. One little thing can give your whole route away because these DBs are so good. It was a little easier when you could just run past people. Now you just have to do all of the little things right. That is what I have focused on, doing the little things right and being a technician so I can create some separation.
On Dave Ragone
He has been phenomenal. Talk about energy, he brings it everyday. When we first hired him everyone kind of looked around because he was an old QB but he loves what he does and really cares about getting us better. We are getting a lot out of room right now and really taking pride in wanting to be a strength of this team. We don't want there to be any more question marks when it comes to the receiving core. Hopefully we can keep improving and keep making plays.
How do the new kickoff rules affect what you do?
That will be interesting. I am not real sure. I think returns will go down in number, but I think at times teams won't want to concede the 20. When the coverage team has 5 less yards to cover the kicker might just hang it up there, and I think you might see some pretty intense hits inside the 15 to 20 yard line because they are running so fast. I want to see if teams are going to just kick it out of the end zone or cover it with 5 less yards to cover. I am really looking forward to game-planning that.
What is the biggest reason you had so much success as a returner?
Definitely give credit to the guys working their butts off in front of me. After that I really enjoy that position. I really enjoy returning the ball. I think I see things well. I don't think I am extremely more gifted than anyone else. I am not afraid to catch it and take a hit or catch it with a guy in my face, which sometimes doesn't work out so well. I really enjoy it. I think punt returns especially are one of the most intense plays in the game. I love what I do. I, for some reason, have a knack for it.
What was the first meeting like with Mike Munchak?
He has been awesome as well. None of us had ever experienced anything besides coach Fisher, and then there are all these changes. He isn't a yeller or a screamer but he commands the room. Everyone around here respects him, especially for his experience on the field. We he speaks everyone listens. He is really organized and has everything going. Things have been pretty crisp and clean so far. We are building everyday as far as the Titans organization, and I think a lot of people around here are optimistic about the future.