July 22, 2021
Charlotte, North Carolina, USA
THE MODERATOR: Questions for Malik.
Q. You heard Coach say where he feels your improvement has come. Looking back at the film, looking over these last couple seasons, what have you seen in your game? Where are the improvements?
MALIK CUNNINGHAM: Definitely the improvements going to be in turnover margin, try to keep those things down. Turnovers not something you can work on. I spend a lot of time in the film room, building the confidence in my receivers, those guys to make plays for me this year. So that's what we're going to do.
Q. Almost every school in the league this year has a returning quarterback. 13 out of 14. Think back to when you were a young quarterback. What are the advantages of being an experienced guy as opposed to when you're trying to get used to college football, learn the system?
MALIK CUNNINGHAM: When you're an experienced quarterback, you seen a lot of ball, been around a lot of coaches. I've been around two coaching staffs. I learned a lot from both coaching staffs, added to my game. The confidence you build when you're an older guy. Having those young guys look up to you is always that a plus in that type of thing.
Q. Last year you had 600 more yards compared to 2019, but you did have seven more interceptions last year compared to 2019. What have you done in the off-season to try to get one number to go the right way and the other number to go the other way?
MALIK CUNNINGHAM: Turnover is not something you can work on. Like I say, I've been spending a lot of time in the film room learning from my mistakes, trying to capitalize on those things, turn those things around.
Q. You watch your film from last year. You had a couple of really long strikes. Would you rather air it out or do you like the shorter passes better?
MALIK CUNNINGHAM: I definitely would love to air it out (smiling).
Q. Hoping to see that smile.
MALIK CUNNINGHAM: (Laughter).
Q. What is the biggest difference for you this year to when you look back to 2019 when you were fighting for the spot?
MALIK CUNNINGHAM: Difference now until then, I know I have a role on this team. I had a role back then, but the role is bigger now. Being the leader of the offense, leader of the team. Those guys look up to me, know I have to come through for those guys when we need it most.
Not just be there when everything is high and good, got to be there for the lows. They have to have somebody to look up to and I'm that guy.
Q. What is it like practicing against C.J.?
MALIK CUNNINGHAM: He's a very experienced guy. Me and C.J., actually came in together. Good seeing him on the other side of the ball, looking you dead in the eye, knowing he might know what you're about to do. It's good going against him. He brings a lot to me, and I know I bring a lot to him, as well.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you very much.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports