Cornerbacks coach Brandon Lynch (6.13.24)

I want to ask you about Denzel (Ward), he talked a lot about how important it was for him to be here as a leader, he’s taking that on, and it’s young guys that kind of follow him. How has he grown since you’ve kind of gotten with them in that role, just being a leader in that room?

“Sure, you know, in our culture, we hold our best players the most accountable, and he’s obviously one of our best players. But when you look at, like, everything that he means to not just our offense, our special teams, but our defense, when your best player is the hardest worker in the room. He comes in early, he stays late, he’s studious, he embodies everything about our team mantra of start, and he’s certainly everything about our defense. He’s a tough guy, he gives great effort, and he plays with passion. So, to see the consistency behind that has really been great.”


He was mentioning that Martin (Emerson) was kind of on his hip. He was working out with Florida with him. Do you see guys kind of gravitate to him? Have you seen Martin kind of gravitate to him specifically?

“Absolutely. I think that, you know, just the culture that coach of fans built here. You know, we talk about the team being the very most important. You see guys reaching down and bringing people up and that’s something that you see with the relationship.”


How excited does that make you as a position coach that two of your guys were like, adamant about even living together basically it sounds like, to train in the down period?

“Sure Ashley (Bastock), you know, it’s a family, it really is, and that’s something that you really can’t fake. You know, these guys come in they really put the team first. But then, you know, as a position coach, really just a facilitator, you know, these guys really do a really good job embodying it, who we are and what the expectations are.”


What did you see from Martin this camp? I mean, you were explosive out there. It seemed like he was in on every play that the ball was thrown. What did you think about him? 

“Sure. Consistency. I know that we talk a lot about versatility, but really consistency and being available. You know, he’s a extremely tough young guy who’s accountable. He’s resilient to the details, and he shows it on display.”


There’s probably, when you say versatility, there’s probably not a guy that embodies that more than Greg (Newsome II). So, what is having kind of that chess piece, I guess if you want to call it play inside, outside, wherever you want, what does having that do to your room?

“As far as with who you know, it’s tremendous. Whenever you can play, man, but then you have versatility of skills to be a very smart, aware zone player. And then when you have, like, the physical tools to match up with small receivers, big receivers, you know, that really helps what our system does.”


Tony Brown told me that you were the best coach that he’s ever had and that you really helped him fall back in love with the game. To have that relationship with a player so early on into this process, what does that mean? And where do you see him kind of going under your guidance?

“Absolutely. You know, honestly, that’s extremely humbling. But honestly, I think that speaks to all of us. I think that speaks to all of our defensive coaches. It speaks to everybody in personnel, speaks to our weight staff and everybody in between, you know, and when I think about his role, like, he’s another S.T.A.R.T player for us, but with him coming in immediately buying into like, who we are, the things that we find important, that’s really going to help our defense.”


Coach the thought that Denzel, Martin and Greg make up the best corner trio in the league, what do you say to that thought?

“You know, I think that every single day we have to work at our habits. We have to make sure that we’re keeping the focus on the work, but most importantly, we have to be consistent, we have to be available, and we have to keep keeping the main thing. The main thing is the team. So as long as we’re keeping the focus on that, we’ll keep improving.”


But if they have that belief, you’re all right with it?

“Oh, 1000%. And I’m glad that they do.”


What was up with Denzel today?

“You know what? Great opportunity to give some of our younger guys some more reps, guys to go ahead and get out there so we can get some more film on display for them”


Was he hurt? 

“Denzel’s great.”


Myles Harden, in your early impressions of him? What are you seeing?

“You know what? He’s one of us. You know, that’s the very first thing that I see. You know, we have a certain style of player that we like to bring in. You know, a guy that has very hard edge, you know, somebody that’s going to give great effort, somebody that plays with swag and passion. He embodies all that, you know, and then, honestly, he’s an extremely smart player. You know, he’s a guy that as soon as he got in the room, you know, the guys immediately gravitated to him because of his work ethic. And again, he’s a smart guy, he puts the team first. So really seeing him, like, really growing in his role as an outside guy, and I know he’s going to do really good things with special teams.”


I know it’s just obviously year two in the defense, but just a couple days of minicamp. But what are you excited about for your group heading into year two in Jim’s (Schwartz) defense and just what you guys can grow next year?

“Yes, yes. You know, the thing that I’m most excited about is for these guys to further their knowledge and the disciplines of our system and also just to grow each other’s relationships. That’s the thing that I’m very most excited about, the thing that we can improve on is just us being consistent. You know, we talk a lot about formations, motions, splits, single width and bigs outside. So, us being able to process information fast, communicate that first, and then execute.”


Brandon, what’s it been like adding Justin Hardy into this room, and what does he bring? Because I think everybody thinks of him as that gunner kind of mentality.

“Sure, sure. Start player. Like, start player for us, you know? And again, like, he is that guy that they all gravitate toward, like period. And I think that AB (Andrew Berry) and (Kevin) Stefanski, they’ve done a really good job getting the right people in the seats, you know? And again, with Larry (Jackson), with everybody in the training room, they’ve done a really good job keeping the guys in the seats. So, really excited about his contribution.”


I got a random one for you. Bubba (Ventrone) told us that he had talked to some of the DB coaches about working with kickers on tackling, has that happened? Have you guys worked with them at all, or has he broached that topic?

“Absolutely. Fundamentals and techniques, right? It’s across the board, you know, and something that I’ve always thought, like, teachers want to teach, right? So, any teacher that gets an opportunity to teach another student, we’re all up for it.”


So how are they doing?

“Oh, good, good. Shared situational awareness.”


Going to put Dustin (Hopkins) out there at nickel or something?

“Hey, get it done.”


Also, with the new D line coach, I know you’re in defense meetings with him and you’ve probably been around him a lot. What, what does Jacques (Cesaire) kind of bring to this defensive staff?

“Sure. Energy. You know, he brings energy, he brings a wealth of knowledge. You know, it’s a people business. So you can immediately tell that like, he has like a pulse on his guys as far as, like, we talk about creating a culture in his room and his culture being the engine, you know, it’s extremely high up there to hold guys accountable, and we keep our best players the most accountable in the system.”


Do you use the playoff loss in Houston throughout the off season? Is it a motivational tool for you, or do you leave it in the rearview mirror? How do you handle it?

“Sure, I think that anytime you get an opportunity to, like, go in and get another rep, any time that you get a chance to like, put your technique and fundamentals on display is helpful. So, that experience is really going to help us moving forward as we reach our next task, and our very next task is really doing a really good job re-getting our energy up and then once we get to training camp, solely focusing on our technique and our fundamentals out there. So that’s really the gas for that.”


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