Read what Creed Humphrey, Nick Bolton and Mecole Hardman said at Training Camp this week.
LB NICK BOLTON
Q: How do you feel going into this training camp? How much more comfortable do you feel this time around that you’ve done the whole rookie season thing and going into your second training camp?
BOLTON: “I feel a thousand times better going into this training camp. Again, I got all OTAs, a second OTAs underneath my belt and kind of got the scheme kind of settled in and so I’m excited for what we got going forward, feel very comfortable again. You know I’m just excited to get out there, I’m ready to get out there and showcase everything I’ve been doing.”
Q: How beneficial is it for you this year to actually focus on football during the offseason opposed to preparing for the combine (last year)?
BOLTON: “It has been huge, getting the opportunity to actually focus on football. I’m actually doing things I feel like (will) help me on the football field and help our team better. So having the whole time since we got done with the season knowing what I wasn’t as good at and kind of getting a little bit better at those aspects of it and dissecting my play as well, that’s going to help our defense and help our team out. So, it’s beneficial for me just to be more flexible and kind of work on more specific drill oriented things and also just work on things that are more specific to our skills rather than doing drills and stuff I feel like was more beneficial for me.”
Q: Are you a guy who sets goals? If so, can you share some goals that you’ve set for this season?
BOLTON: “I got one goal, win a Super Bowl. We fell short last year and so in order for me to feel like I had a successful season (we) got to get back to where we were last year and execute in that game. We got the chance to play in the next game but that starts when we get there today just going to continue to work on it all the way until we get down to the season. So, win a Super Bowl I feel like that’s my main goal and that’s what I’m focused on so I can get our team there and our defense can play great team defense, I’ll be happy where I’m at.”
Q: Given Anthony (Hitchens) is gone and now you’re going to be one of the veterans in your position group, people will be looking at you as a veteran and for leadership. What type of leader are you and what is your leadership style?
BOLTON: “I more so lead by example; I’m a vocal guy now, probably wasn’t last year so lead by example is kind of what I pride myself on. I come every single day and put my best foot forward. Got to go out there and execute the scheme and be vocal within the scheme and just doing my job to the best of my abilities. I feel like that’s how I got to this point so I’m going to continue to do that. I feel like that’s what our team needs the most.”
Q: How do you go about getting better at coverage? Is that something you just need reps, extra film study, getting to know the moves of your opponents? What is the way that you go about that?
BOLTON: “Everything you mentioned goes into it. Film study, kind of getting more of our scheme and understanding what (Defensive Coordinator Steve Spagnuolo) Coach Spags wants on third down. Seeing the whole year, watching Ben (Niemann) do it last year and kind of understanding the schemes and what situations kind of arise and how we attack the offenses, so it has been great to have that whole offseason to study and figure out what we want to do on third down. Again, it’s just a lot of things, working on pass coverage, working on understanding route concepts and schemes and what teams are trying to get to with certain down distances. So, all that goes into it, but yeah, I’m excited for it. Hopefully I’ll have the opportunity to play all three downs, but nothing is guaranteed so I’m going to go out there and compete for my spot.”
C CREED HUMPHREY
Q: Are you ready for dorm life again? Did you learn anything last year that may make it a little easier on you this time around?
HUMPHREY: “Yeah definitely, I’m excited. I can’t wait to get back up there to St. Joeand get back after it. You know, it’s a very nice facility, very nice practice fields, indoor facility out here and dorms are nice, so it’ll be really good. This year I ended up renting a bed so you know I’ll have a bigger bed this time which will be nice. But yeah, I’m excited for it. I can’t wait.”
Q: What would you say you guys as a group want to achieve on the offensive line as far as having continuity this season because of how well it went last year?
HUMPHREY: “Yeah, I think everybody on the line this year, we want to be known as one of the most physically dominating lines in the league. We have the pieces, we have the guys that can do it, so really that’s our whole outlook is just being physical, the physicality will show through and make teams know when they’re playing us that they’re going to be playing a physical offensive line that finishes through the whistle, finishes plays and things like that and we’re excited to get to work on it.”
Q: I know you’re a big team guy, so I ask this cautiously, but this time last year you were relatively unknown but you kind of in a way became a fan favorite, I’m sure you get recognized more and more. What has that transition been like going into this camp knowing that a lot of people are going to know who you are?
HUMPRHEY: “Yeah, the transition has been good. The fans here are awesome, they’re one of a kind in Kansas City. So, it has been really awesome just to get to interact with fans and kind of see how they support with their team and stuff. It’s been really cool. Offensive linemen don’t usually get a ton of recognition and stuff and with the video that was put out the rookie of the year thing that the radio station put out was really cool. And fans bought into it and it was really cool to see so I’m really grateful for it and that kind of proves that Kansas City does have the best fan base, so I’m really excited about this year.”
Q: What benefit do you get out of training camp? Can you explain the exact preparation you get as an offensive lineman?
HUMPHREY: “Yeah, last year I felt like I grew so muchthroughout the playbook and my techniques and everything through training camp cause it’s 24/7 you’re thinking about football you’re working on different things at different times of the day. So, I think it’s a huge help for us and it really helps build the continuity too of the offensive line. I mean you’re with the guys every single day for most of the day. So, I think it’s a huge help. We’re excited to get back up there and start working together again because you can build a lot off of training camp so we’re excited about it.”
WR MECOLE HARDMAN
Q: Was just curious if there are things you’ve worked on this offseason and things you’ll continue to work on this camp that you want to get better as opposed to just general improvement?
HARDMAN: “I mean I think it’s all general improvement honestly just talking routes, catching better, you know what I’m saying, recognizing defenses better watching a little bit more film, so I think all that goes into account of trying to become an overall better player in general.”
Q: I know you had talked about improving as a deep threat and things like that but when you came into the league you were raw, how much did you learn whether it’s from Tyreek (Hill) or other guys about tracking the deep ball, about running routes and how much more polished do you think you are going into season four kind of ready for the breakout season?
HARDMAN: “I think I’m ready, you know, learning from the guys that have been in front of me, the veterans that have been in front of me and also having Trav (Travis Kelce) still here. I think just developing, you know what I’m saying, like you said tracking the ball, looking up instead of looking back, knowing what’s around me, knowing my surroundings. So, all that taking it (into) account and just trying to be better year after year, so definitely poised for that for this year and definitely have gotten better every year.”
Q: Last week you were in D.C for the soccer game at Bayern Munich representing the Chiefs, what was that experience like for you? I know you’ve played internationally before but what do you think about possibly being able to play in Germany?
HARDMAN: “Yeah, the environment of the game was very cool man, I enjoyed it. Meeting the players and seeing their game. I think we played in Mexico City my rookie year. Playing in Germany I think that’d be cool just a different environment, different fanbase, it’s probably a little bit different out there as far as like fan wise. But I think that’d be nice to go out there and represent the NFL out there in a different country and try to bring some more fans into this game so it would definitely be a great opportunity to do that.”
Q: What’s it like for you as far as bringing stuff and what you do but also just emotion or excitement or non-excitement level for training camp?
HARDMAN: “I mean now I’m here just packing my bags, got my comforter and my sheets ready. Got a rookie, I think Skyy (Moore) going to get the snacks for us so we’re going to fill his list up with snacks. But I think there’s an excitement level and like non-excitement level because you’re excited to go to camp, the season is here, but like I’m not excited because we got all these hard practices (laughing). But I’m definitely looking forward to it, it’s going to be a big camp with all the new guys in here to get everyone gelled in and get the chemistry down and everybody get the plays down and go into the season ready. So definitely excited for sure.”