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Quotes: Preston Smith 8-1-2018

On his rookie contract:

"You know, it crosses my mind at times. We haven't (agent) talked to the Redskins personal, I haven't personally, but you know going into the season this year all I know is I got to play ball and I got to, you know, control what I can control and that's my performance on the field. And when the time comes it's going to pay if you play. You play good; they're going to pay good. That's all I know, so I go out there with that mindset, go out there and perfect my craft, go out there and play with a lot of energy and show them that I can be, you know, a key asset to this team in the future."

On having an outside linebacker coach:

"It's great [because] we have somebody who keys in on the things we are going to do at practice that day. And we got a lot of emphasis on the lot of technique that we need to work on throughout the day and on the plays we're going to run and the footwork and the things it takes as an outside linebacker. It's kind of hard for an inside linebacker coach to coach, you know, the inside and the outside, [because] they teach them a different thing then they teach us something different. We got a lot of different footwork and a lot of steps to take. But it's a lot better that we have an outside linebacker coach to work on our technique [and] to help perfect our craft for practice and the games coming up."

On containing QB Alex Smith:

"It's pretty tough. You know, Alex Smith is a great quarterback. He's mobile, he can throw in the pocket and he can hurt you with his feet. But, it's great we get this in practice because we'll see a lot of quarterbacks down the road and going against him in practice, it will prepare us for the future. Now we know how to contain, in the future, we'll know how to contain Alex and a lot of quarterbacks similar to his playing style."

On LB Ryan Anderson:

"Ryan is a great kid. He always studies film. He is aware of his assignments. He knows what to do when he touches the field. [Ryan] playing with a lot of confidence this year is going to help this defense a lot. He can be used in multiple ways. He can drop in coverage and he can rush. He can play the run very well and, you know, he has a lot of tools to be a key asset to the defense." 

On the importance of the interior defensive line:

"It's always great to have a good interior line. We got guys who can stop the run, also, and in the passing game they can push the pocket in [and] keep the quarterback from having a comfortable pocket in front of his face or stepping up to throw passes comfortably. Jon [Jonathan] Allen, Matt Ioannidis, Ziggy Hood, Stacy McGee and Daron Payne, and a lot of other guys - Anthony Lanier [II] - we got a lot of guys who can push the pocket in front of the quarterback to keep him from being comfortable."

On RB Chris Thompson's return to practice:

"That's great because Chris Thompson is a key asset to our offense. He's a great [running] back, he brings a lot of different tools to the offense. He can be used in multiple ways and getting to see him out there practicing, it is a great thing for Chris because, you know, I love him and his spirit. He is a great teammate and a great guy, and I always want to see him on the field."

*On comparing his rookie season to his current state as a professional player: *

"You know, I'm mature. I'm more aware of the game than I was when I walked into the NFL. My technique is a whole lot better; everything is a whole lot better from when I first walked into the NFL. You know, I'm more aware of my technique and of course in more film and I'm more knowledgeable of the game and what's going on around me."

On the differences between the inside and outside linebacker positions:

"It's pretty much the same to me. You know, you see a lot more standing up and hand in the dirt you probably have a better get-off, but I feel like you can still do great at both of them. I had great rushes standing up and I had great rushes down. I feel like it's still, you know, I've worked on standing up rushing a lot more over the years and I feel like I'm just getting just as equal as I would be with my hand in the dirt."

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