Saints quotebook: Vonn Bell (December 24, 2018)

Les East

New Orleans Saints Safety Vonn Bell

Conference Call with New Orleans Media

Monday, December 24, 2018

How nice is it to have Christmas on your off day this year?

“Oh man it’s truly a blessing. Being surrounded by your loved ones and friends and family. Being to spend (time) with loved ones and friends and family like I said is awesome because you also get your mind off football, but also just cherish the time with your family. It’s a huge blessing.”

What’s been going well for you the last few games?

“Really been just dialed in on the game plan and just really trusting it because our position coaches just reiterate that we want to play our best ball in December and that’s when great team’s separate themselves and that’s when great DB units separate themselves and we’ll just believe in that and really just dial into that and just play for each other and just go out there and have fun and just letting it loose on Sunday.”

What did Chris Banjo add to the secondary?

“He just came in man-to-man, five-wide (packages), they had me matched up with a receiver so we brought in another safety. He’s very reliable, always making plays on the ball when he comes in. He’s always a workhorse in our DB room. We have a lot of faith in what he can do and what he brings to the defense. That’s what we believe he can do in that role that he did on Sunday.”

Do you feel like playing the Steelers helps prepare you for anything you’ll see the rest of the way?

“Oh for sure, because it’s always great to go against a receiver group with that (talented) core and just really work your technique and eyes. Go out there and compete at a high level because they have a really complete receiving group and what they do with the five wide, they bring in different receivers. You have to go out there and matchup. They have great communication with their quarterback and just finding space through the defenses and just getting open. They work back to the ball and you just want to turn your eyes and your feet and everything as a DB and just go out there and compete at a high level. Go out there and win your individual matchup and really just be a key component for the defense when you do that. It was a great challenge for us DBs and we just have to keep getting better in that aspect and compete every down.”

How does that Steelers offense compare to the teams you faced thus far?

“They have great skill players in space. Like I said, they are on the same page with the quarterback. Being able to find the ways in the zone and maneuver within that and breaking away and breaking coverage. As a DB you have to train your mind for more than just a three second play because the play can be extended because the quarterback knows how to work the pocket and going against Big Ben (Roethlisberger) and he’s so on time with these receivers. One of the challenges, it’s almost the same as the Rams because they have big vertical threats and going against Julio (Jones) and all those games we played all year. We played well against those guys. It was just another stepping stone on our journey.”

How do you feel like you’ve been progressing through your career? How big has this year been for you in terms of growth?

“It’s been huge. Just stepping into my role, going out there and diagnosing the game, what’s the situation, just going out there and making plays in the passing game and the run game. (I’m) just trying to be an overall complete player for my teammates. Dialing in and just diagnosing the game week in and week out. Having that momentum each week and (to just) keep on going has been huge. It’s been a great year. I’m just going out there and doing it for my guys, leaving it all out there on the line, and playing for the coaching staff. We’re really just enjoying the game and doing it at a high level.”

Last year you clinched the division in week 17. How different is it this year just having everything crossed off?

“All the goals we set during the spring, OTAs, and before the season; we’ve just been crossing them off. Win the division, getting home field throughout the playoffs, and we’ll just keep on checking and checking off. The work isn’t done and that’s what I love about this group. We never get complacent. We’re always hungry and eager for the next mission and the next assignment. We just go out there and go to work every week. That’s why I am saying hats off to this group and what kind of guys we have in the locker room. We’ll just keep on working to the greater goal. We’re just waiting for our next assignment. I think we stepped up to the plate this past weekend. Finishing it off and clinching home field. Now we’re just waiting on our next assignment.”

What is your approach to preparing for a game where you want to stay sharp, but you’re not sure how much you’re going to play?

“We’re going to treat this like a regular work week. The work is not done. We’re not throwing all the hay in the barn. We’re going to fine tune what the coaches provide us and what they bring us this week. Throughout the preparation, throughout the week, we’re going to treat this like a regular work week. We’re going to do what the coaches tell us to do and if we have to play, we have to play. You go out there for your guys. It is all for one purpose, one mission, and that’s what we’re here for.”