NORMAN — Landry Jones learned the hard way about pregame traffic in Norman on fall Saturdays.
The former Oklahoma quarterback and Pittsburgh Steelers rookie appeared at the AT&T Fan Zone Tour before Saturday's home game against TCU. Jones took pictures and participated in a Q&A with OU fans.
But Jones was almost late for his appearance after he got caught in pregame traffic.
“I ended up having to run all the way over here to be here on time,” Jones said with a laugh. “It was just totally different. Something I've never done before.”
The record-setting former Sooner chatted with The Oklahoman about several topics, including the NFL life, OU's new offensive system and his “terrible” first play as a pro quarterback in the preseason, when he ran into his running back and fumbled into the end zone, causing a safety.
Q: What has been the biggest adjustment for you between college football and the NFL?
The playbook and the speed of the game. It's a different offense that I'm playing in, but it's fun. Just living the dream and getting to chase after a great opportunity.
And now you're playing in an offense that huddles up.
That's one thing I had to get used to, calling plays in the huddle and doing that type of stuff. I'm getting used to it now.
Your first NFL snap in the preseason obviously didn't go very well …
The first play was terrible.
Was it tough to bounce back from that?
There was literally nowhere to go but up from there, so all the pressure was off. It was just one of those things that happened, miscommunication between me and the running back. After that, it was all fine. It was definitely good to learn from.
You didn't miss a start in nearly four years as Oklahoma's starting quarterback, but now you're working as a backup. Is that a tough adjustment?
Obviously I want to play, and obviously I want to go in there and start. But that's not how the reality of things is right now. It has been a little bit of an adjustment, but now we've gotten into a rhythm of everything. Just trying to figure everything out, what we want to do and how to really help the Pittsburgh Steelers win a football game.
What's it like working under a veteran like Ben Roethlisberger, who has had so much success?
Ben's a great guy. He's helped me out a lot, been really supportive. Now hopefully I can help him out on the sideline and support him like he did me during the preseason. I'm really lucky to be part of that organization.
People often make comparisons between Ben and Blake Bell because of their size and mobility. Do you see those similarities?
Yeah, both are big guys, hard to take down. Gonna make a lot of plays with their feet. I think Blake's a little different than Ben is, but there are a lot of similarities in their game.
Watching from afar, have you been surprised by how Oklahoma's quarterback situation has shaken out?
You know, I wasn't really too surprised that Trevor won the job. He's a really athletic guy, and the way the offense was going and the way they were shaping it, I wasn't really too surprised about it. But whenever Blake went in, you know, he's similar to what Trevor is and this offense suits him really well, too. It's made for a guy who can run around and make plays with his legs. I think the quarterback run game has really turned this offense around.
Is it weird watching OU quarterbacks run around like that?
It's just totally different than what me and Sam (Bradford) were running. But I think it's for the best, just the way the recruiting classes have gone and the way the offense is run now, being a spread offense and spreading the field out. I think they're gonna do a great job with it.