Quinton Coples says he received Rex’s message loud and clear.
Though the former first-round pick has yet to sit down and talk to his head coach, Coples understands why Ryan expressed disappointment in his weigh-room effort last week.
“I wouldn’t say I got too comfortable. It was just during a drill, it was videotaped and I could’ve gave better effort,” Coples said Thursday. “So the next day when we came back here I gave better effort and made sure that won’t happen again.”
The second-year player said he found out about his coach’s comments from his business manager, who has a "Quinton Coples" Google Alerts set up on his phone.
“It was a first-time experience for me, but it was good,” he said, when asked if he’s ever been publicly called out by a coach.
(During training camp in 2012, Ryan expressed frustration over Coples’ attitude and conditioning after the rookie was subbed out of a preseason loss to Carolina.)
Though he and Ryan “haven’t talked at all,” Coples sees where his coach was coming from.
“He’s a coach and he spoke how he felt,” he said. “I took it, moved on and got better this week. I wasn’t shocked by it. It was just something he did and I responded well. I responded in the weight room and I got better.
“…In that situation, I agree with him, yeah,” he said, adding that Ryan’s comments are a non-issue. “Next day, get in the weight room, go hard, make sure it doesn’t happen again.”
As for his transition to outside linebacker, Coples expressed optimism. “I’m learning the plays, learning the defense better,” he said. “Everything is flowing naturally.”
After playing in the 290-pound range last season, Coples said he’s down to 285 – which falls right in line with his “280-285” target goal.
“I think this will be a big year for me,” he said. “I think moving to outside linebacker will free me up a lot more, open up a lot more opportunities…whether I’m dropping or whether I’m going. So I think it’ll be a big year for me.”