A Burgundy and Gold Obsession

    • Skins Quotes 9/12/18: Gruden, Smith, Reich


      Head Coach Jay Gruden

      On injuries:
      Trey Quinn and Cam Sims both had ankle surgery today. They'll both be put on IR. [Troy] Apke had a hamstring; he did not participate. 'Mo' [Maurice] Harris had a concussion related; he was limited. Morgan Moses, slight knee; he was limited.

      On roster moves:
      "Yes, we signed [Kenny] Ladler off our practice squad. We got [Brian] Quick. Yeah, we activated Jehu [Chesson] from our practice squad."

      On if WR Maurice Harris is still in concussion protocol:
      "He's been allowed to do individual drills and progress from there. As far as still being in it, he's technically not out of it until he's officially cleared but they have progressed him into normal work duty."

      On WR Cam Sims and WR Trey Quinn returning later in the season:
      "Yes, we get two spots and right now we have three possibilities really with [Byron] Marshall, Quinn and Sims."

      On a timeline for their return:
      "Probably around six, seven weeks, eight weeks, hopefully"

      On LB Ryan Kerrigan's streak of consecutive games started:
      "No, he has always taken care of himself. He's one of the best pros we have in here, you know, as far as work ethic [and] taking care of his body. Obviously, if you look at him, you can see that. He works extremely hard in practice. We do take a little bit off of him from time to time. That's just because we ask him to. He never volunteers that, but, yeah, he is just a great worker. I think he's one of those guys that can play for a long time because he takes care of his body, works extremely hard."

      On if he is amazed by Kerrigan's streak:
      "It's amazing. It really is. You know, obviously it’s a tough football game and there's some luck involved in that, but a lot of it has to do with his tenacity [and] his work ethic – offseason, in-season, breakfast, lunch, dinner, what he eats, how he sleeps, all that. He's just the ultimate pro as far as how he takes care of his body."

      On Cam Sims and Trey Quinn's level of surgery:
      "They both were high ankle. Yeah, there's some new procedure they're doing. I don’t exactly know what it is called, but they went in there and did something."

      On LB Ryan Anderson playing fullback and if there was coaching involved in that adjustment:
      "I'd like to think there was coaching involved in this league. I don’t know. But yeah, we coach him up. We try to coach him up. You know, we tried to get him a couple reps on Friday-Saturday just to get him looking at the defense. We don’t give him a huge package of plays, just three or four plays in there. It's really hard to simulate that, you know, without pads on a Friday or Saturday, but Ryan has volunteered himself to do that. Daron Payne has done it before in the past at Alabama, so we have a couple options there in-house without having to activate a true fullback. Ryan's got the body for it; he's got the toughness for it and the power, so he's a good fit for it."

      On what the conversation was like when signing WR Brian Quick:
      "Do you want to come back? Yes. [Laughter] He's a great kid. We hated to let go of him in the first place because he's such a hard worker and had a good training camp. The injury set him back. You know, the thigh injury set him back. When he did get healthy, Cam Sims emerged in his absence and then he got hurt a little bit and Trey Quinn had an emergence. Obviously, 'Mo' Harris was in a position he was in, so numbers-wise we had to let somebody go, but fortunately [for us] he's still on the streets and able to fill a void for us."

      On if Quick will be active this weekend:
      "Yeah, two of our five active guys are on IR now so we have to activate a couple more. Jehu [Chesson] has a chance if 'Mo' [Harris] can't go. Jehu, you know, especially for special teams. That's what his strength is. Then obviously Quick could be the fourth [receiver]."

      On the starting offensive line:
      "Their versatility is key. They can run. They can pull. They are strong at the point of attack and are pretty athletic. So, you can have a lot of versatility there and [Jeremy] Sprinkle getting better at the tight end spot has helped a lot. I think Vernon Davis has gotten better in there, even Jordan Reed has gotten better in there and the receivers blocking well helped a lot too. Obviously, I think Alex Smith with his versatility, able to move around and do some different things with the football helps out and the backs' vision and running after contact."

      On CB Quinton Dunbar's performance against the Arizona Cardinals:
      "Well, he was able to make plays, both in man coverage and in zone coverage. I think it was one of his better games and he tackled pretty well. I think it was one of his better games as a pro here and I think he’s got to continue to make strides to get better and keep studying the game and the people he is covering but he obviously had a big game Sunday."

      On which traits allowed Dunbar to succeed last weekend:
      "Well, he’s a good athlete. Being an ex-receiver has helped out a little bit too because he can see routes and break on things, but really it’s his length and his size. He’s got great speed and recovery speed if he does get beat at the line."

      On what goes into trap games and how to avoid them:
      "Well, I don’t think we are in that position right now to be thinking of trap games at all. We’re not good enough to be thinking about that anyway. We’re trying to find our way as a football team, identity on offense and defense, a consistency to our football team. We had a great start last week, but we’re all about ball right now, trying to get better today and get ready for a very good, very talented, well coached Indianapolis football team."

      On if WR Jehu Chesson can play in the slot:
      "Probably not, we will probably keep him outside. I think if something were to happen to Jamison [Crowder] we would probably put Jordan [Reed] there full time if need be. Jordan is a great slot receiver. He can do everything."

      On TE Jordan Reed’s blocking against the Arizona Cardinals:
      "I don’t know, but he’s gotten better. I’m very impressed with Jordan and the way he blocked. All those tight ends really did a good job, you know [Jeremy] Sprinkle and Vernon [Davis] like I mentioned before. That’s one of the problems we had a little bit last year. Our tight end blocking wasn’t as good as it should be. Our lines fluctuated in and out and were a problem, so they did well."

      On preparation for Hurricane Florence:
      "I think game plan related. We can adjust our game plan to that. We have a lot of different types of styles of runs and passes that we can adjust if need be, personnel groupings, but as far as practicing on a possible wet field, we have no way of doing that. We just have to adjust at game time if something happens."

      On TE Jeremy Sprinkle’s progress:
      "Yeah, without a doubt his blocking and Sprinkle is deceivingly fast. He can get down on the seams and he’s a good receiver also. But really we’re asking him to; one, focus on being a good blocker at the point of attack and that’s why we took him out of Arkansas. He’s gotten stronger in the weight room with Chad [Englehart] and Wes [Phillips] has done a great job with his footwork and fundamentals and he’s long and strong."

      How does Sprinkle free up offense for other tight ends:
      "Lots of options; its good options to have, you know, the personnel packages vary. Sometimes we are Sprinkle and Jordan [Reed], sometimes we’re Sprinkle and Vernon [Davis] and sometimes we are Vernon and Jordan. Then the single receiver sets sometimes one of the three so we can mix them up, keep them fresh and utilize our best personnel accordingly."


      QB Alex Smith

      On if the success of the running game helped the passing game:
      "I think as a quarterback when you’re throwing the football, anytime you have a run game like that, a defense has got to defend it. It opens up a lot of opportunities for us on the edge, in the perimeter, whether it's play-action pass, just spacing the field. A lot of favorable matchups I felt like we had [was] because of the run game going so well. I mean you love to have balance, any good offense has balance and obviously with us running the ball the way we did – I think kind of setting that tone – certainly a lot of stuff in the pass game came off it."

      On why he is comfortable with RPOs and how it helps the running game:
      "I think experience is the main reason. I’ve had a lot of experience with them since they’ve kind of come and go. Some weeks they are great. Some weeks they are not as great. I think the nice thing is that as a play caller, all of a sudden now you don’t have to be right. In the past if you were having to choose between run and pass, you had to make that decision and kind of play that chess game as a play caller. Now, not as much, you kind of have them built into the same play call and the defense really dictates where the ball goes. So, like I said, some weeks they make a ton of sense based on what you are seeing scheme wise and from a personnel standpoint. Other weeks they don’t and won’t be as good."

      On his impressions of the offensive line's versatility:
      "Yeah, I’ve been really impressed with those guys and not just the starting five as a unit but I think that whole room. The kind of pride they take. The detail they have at their position and as a whole and I think the detail is in all aspects. I feel like they can do about everything and they take a lot of pride in being able to do a whole lot and they don’t get pigeon-holed as a single player or as a group. They can do it all. They are good in space. They can pound it. They are good in pass pro [protection]. I think that’s a strength, not only theirs, but as an offense and a team."

      On how TE Jordan Reed helps the offense:
      "I think the tight end position is such a unique position across the league. These guys are tweeners. They all do a little bit of everything. They have to block in the run game. They have to block in the pass game. They have to obviously be involved in route running as well and we move them around with shifts and motions and those kinds of things. I think these guys all have a lot on their plate, and in Jordan, you have a guy that is really special and unique at doing all those things. His ability to do a lot as a tight end – I mean he is capable of doing about all there is because he has obviously the skillset to do it. I think mentally he works really hard at knowing all those facets of his game. I think he’s a difference maker without a doubt at the tight end position. It’s different when he’s on the field."

      On the diversity of the offense and how it can change when facing a different defense:
      "I think that’s mindset you hope to develop and I think that’s true every week. Last week especially, because we were facing a new coaching staff and a new defense, but every week there is an element of that. You don’t know where their point of emphasis is going to be and I think throughout the week you prepare to have a sound game plan knowing that we don’t know. We don’t know whose turn it’s going to be. You know? You don’t know who is going to have that moment in that key situation and I think good offenses prepare every single guy included to do their job that when your number is called you make the play. You are accountable to the other guys on the offensive side and the team that you piece it together through playmakers and schemes – that you can’t stop us all. That kind of mentality, I think you have to develop that and work at it."

      On anything that surprised him in Week 1:
      "I don’t know about surprise. I think just anxious to see us when it really matters. I think all that stuff gets turned up, the intensity, the stress, the anxiety. All those things get magnified once they become real. So yeah, I was anxious to see how we handled that, travelling on the road, an opener, handling our emotions. I think because using them as a strength or sometimes letting them get the best of you and I thought our team as a whole handled that really, really well. There was still kind of the unknown, I think to just see how we handle it and I think it still is. Every week is a different thing and something else is going to come up and we are going to have to be able to handle it. That’s an ongoing test.”

      On how he will prepare for the game with the possibility of inclement weather:
      "No, no secrets. I wish I had a secret or something that made it easy. No, it’s tough; fundamentals, attention to detail when you handle the ball every single play in weather, and obviously that’s a premium, you know, ball security, ball handling, in the pocket and things like that. I wish I had some kind of secret sauce or something but I don’t. I just try to do the best I can.”

      On comparing OL Trent Williams to other linemen he has played with through his career:
      "Yeah again, I think it’s a lot like the Jordan question. I don’t want to necessarily compare the other guys I’ve played with but same thing, he’s a special player. He’s a difference maker as well when he’s on the field. I don’t feel like there is anything he is really limited in doing. I think as a left tackle, he can do it all. He’s great in the open field. I mean, he’s so strong handling any guys his size or bull rush or things like that. He’s got great feet. I think all those things obviously make him that special."

      On if he has been in awe of Williams:
      "I mean, yeah certainly, you watch a lot of film over the years, you see plays, and I think everybody in the league knows the caliber of player he is and how special he is. It’s always different though when you are on the same field as him, and you see it live, and it becomes a little more real. It’s special to see on a daily basis."

      On LB Ryan Kerrigan's streak of consecutive starts:
      "I didn’t know that. I mean, that is a ridiculous stat at that position. Any time you are playing in the trenches with those guys, it’s a different level in there. Every single play, it’s tough to avoid contact and I think credit to him. I certainly see how hard he works, taking care of his body, every single day he’s in here. Whether he’s working out, recovering, doing something, rehabbing, it’s not by accident. I think having gone against him in the past too you see that same kind of relentlessness on the field. Obviously, he’s the same thing, a really elite player when you’re out there every Sunday helping us."

      On his communication with the wide receivers and keeping them involved:
      "I think talking about it like that; that mentality right? There was some unknown. We didn’t know where that game plan was going to go and I think there are going to be weeks like that. There’s going to be other weeks where it comes in bunches and all of a sudden we are going to lean on them offensively and we are going to need them and the ball is going to [thrown to a different receiver] a bunch. That’s the nature I think of week to week and just who you are playing. I think the great thing is we got a bunch of selfless guys out there. I think all they care about is winning. Obviously, they want to be involved and included but [they are] team first guys. I think that’s not always the case at that position around the league and I think it's kind of a credit to the mindset of those guys we have outside [at the wide receiver position]."


      On the benefits and downside of him starting at quarterback early in his career:
      "I don’t know if there were many pros for me playing early. [Laughter] I feel like I dug myself a pretty deep hole that rookie year. Certainly though, playing, I mean, I started every single game, every snap that second year and for me that was invaluable. That kind of experience was invaluable for me. I do feel like that was a different situation in the year prior and these situations are all different. Some of these guys come out more ready than others based on how long they played and where they are maturity wise. How old they are, all these things, how much ball they played, so every situation is different. I don’t think any two are totally alike. So, it’s hard to compare. I don’t think you really compare apples to apples, but I do know for me, I felt like I dug myself a big hole my rookie year and it took multiple years to kind of get myself out of that."

      On the thought of being drafted to a team where he could have sat behind a veteran quarterback:
      "I’ve had people ask me and things like that. I don’t give that much thought. I mean, what’s the point? No. I mean, they are totally different roads and it does me no good dwelling on that. I’m very thankful for where I'm at right now and the road I did have to go down. Certainly, there were tough times and things like that, but no, you can’t go back and change it. So, why dwell on it?"


      Indianapolis Colts Head Coach Frank Reich

      On his playing career influencing his career path and outlook as a coach:
      "I probably think the biggest way it's impacting me is how to prepare. You know, as a backup, you're not getting all the reps, so you need to be real disciplined, real focused to try to get the most out of it even though you're not getting as many reps as, you know, especially as a backup quarterback. Having the mental fortitude, the mental toughness to always be ready – to try to be ready and to stay focused in preparation. I think that's probably the biggest one."

      On if there are parallels in coaching and being the backup quarterback:
      "Yeah, I do think there's parallels. I think the parallel is the fact of just what you said that you're really, you know, you're not the guy, you're there to support the guy. As a coach, that's really all you're trying to do. You're just trying to do everything you can do to help your players get ready to play on Sundays."

      On what made him decide to transition from ministry into coaching:
      "You know, I just got to a – I mean I always knew I wanted to get into coaching. When I finished playing and I did what I did for a lot of reasons, one obviously because of the beliefs and the things I wanted to do in the ministry. But also, because my children were young and I wanted to have a schedule where I could be flexible enough and spend time with them while they were at a young age. Then once my children got a little bit older, I just always knew I had a passion for this game and a passion and a love to coach. My dad was a football coach. My mom was a track and field coach. My brother's a head coach. I love football and love being around it, so it just felt like it was the right opportunity to get back in after my children got a little bit older."

      On if his coaching path has gone how he expected:
      "Yeah, you know what I never could have predicted this path. I mean, the coaching profession is crazy, it's fun. You meet a lot of great people and you learn a lot from the people you work with. Yeah, I didn't know what to expect. I just knew you want to be part of a team, you want to be part of an organization that's trying to do things the right way. You want to be around the players and you want to be around the competition. My attitude was just go in there and work hard and enjoy the moment. Don’t try to be a climber. Don’t try to be that guys who's always looking to try to get the next job. I never approached it like that. I never cared about the next job. I just tried to do the best I could at each job I was at."

      On the process of him interviewing for the head coaching position at Maryland a few years ago:
      "At the time it happened, obviously we were in the middle of an NFL season and so my initial response was that I wasn’t interested. I didn’t want to go through an interview process and be one of three guys or anything like that, but because it was my alma mater and I had great love and respect for my alma mater, there were early indications that it wasn’t going to be a big contingent of people and that I was on a very, very short list. I talked with the people at the Chargers at the time and they were gracious enough to allow me to interview and that went very well I thought. It came down to myself and one other guy from what I understood and I didn’t get the job."

      On if he was disappointed he didn’t get the job:
      "Naturally, if you're interviewing for a job and you don’t get it, you're going to experience a little bit of a disappointment. The truth of the matter is I've had enough things like that happen. I just have the perspective of not meant to be, not the right time, not the right place. Keep working and other opportunities will come."

      On if he has kept up with what's has been happening at Maryland recently:
      "Believe it or not and this is the absolute truth, I mean I have no time to keep up with it. Not that I don’t have an interest in my alma mater or care, I do care. The demands of this business are such that I haven’t read one article about it."

      On LB Ryan Kerrigan and how impressive his consecutive starts streak is:
      "I mean, I got so much, I got incredible respect for this guy. I mean not only is… you're right his longevity is near second to none, but just his productivity as well. I mean this guy is a force. You know, having played in that division for the last two years, I've experienced what it's like to be on the other side of the ball from him. He's an excellent player and I know he's a team leader and the kind of guy that represents this league the way you want it represented."

      On his impression of WR Ryan Grant:
      "Really good. I mean Ryan had a good first week for us. You know, had eight catches and, you know, hard worker. You know, really a talented young receiver. We're really excited to have him."

      On TE Mo Alie-Cox's progress and development as a football player:
      "Really well. I love working with Mo now. Mo's a really talented player and we're really excited to have him. He's a big man. He has the right attitude, very good skillset and for a guy that's transitioned from basketball. I've been around a number of those guys who have been transitioned from basketball and Mo is doing very well for himself."

      On what he thought of RB Adrian Peterson's performance against the Arizona Cardinals:
      "You know, I thought he looked great. I mean the guy's incredible. Truly one of the greatest of all time [and he's] just such an exciting and electric player. He still has that elusiveness and his inside running ability, the jump cut stuff that he's always had. I mean, I just think this guy is one of the true all-time greats."

      On why he thinks the run-pass option is catching on so much now:
      "You know, I think that what's happened is a few teams have experimented with them and had success. It's a little bit of a copycat league and, you know, I think at first there's a little bit of a resistance because you think, 'No maybe that's just a college thing.’ But, then when you realize that there's ways to carry it over to where it makes sense in the NFL. You can't deny some of the success that you've seen out there."

      On if he sees a creative offensive concept coming anytime soon:
      "Well right now I think it's going to ride out with this RPO thing for another year, you know, this being a thing because not that many teams did much of it last year and what I've already seen this year is there's a whole lot more teams doing it this year than were doing it last year and looking at different variations of it and different creative ways. There's so many different variations to the RPO game. I mean it's almost endless and I'm already seeing so many more teams and so many more plays that are incorporating that. It's pretty remarkable."




      Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
      This article was originally published in forum thread: Skins Quotes 9/12/18: Gruden, Smith, Reich started by Boone View original post
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