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Game 12 - Philly. No biggie. Just a season in the balance ...

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    Default Skins Quotes 12/26/18: Gruden, Josh Johnson

    December 26, 2018

    Head Coach Jay Gruden

    On injuries:
    "Did not participate were [Ryan] Anderson, hamstring; Maurice Harris, concussion; [Colt] McCoy, fibula; [Ty] Nsekhe, knee; Jordan Reed, ankle/foot; [Matt] Ioannidis, hamstring. Limited were [Vernon] Davis, concussion; [Tony] Bergstrom, knee/ankle; Trent Williams, thumb and wrist; [Jamison] Crowder, wrist; [Adrian] Peterson, shoulder and there's one more. I don’t know who that is, I can't read it. Oh, [Zac] Kerin, knee. Zac Kerin, knee."

    On placing any players who can't play this week on IR:
    "There's a possibility. It just depends on if we need those spots for other players or not. If we have 46 guys here that can go out and play that we feel good about, we won't need to put anybody on IR. We'll just leave them as inactive. But if we need to get a spot, like for Ryan Anderson for instance, if he can't go, we might need a spot there and we could put one of those guys down."

    On if he sees new players coming into the building:
    "We've got them all in the building. We signed Marquis Flowers, another inside linebacker, and got a couple of guys on the practice squad that we added recently so we should be OK. Alex Carter, we added, obviously [ArDarius] Stewart, Carlos Henderson, [Jack] Tacho, so we've added some people."

    On why he decided to move on from S D.J. Swearinger Sr. and what the discussions were like:
    "Well, the discussions were private. I had multiple discussions with him in previous instances. At the end of the day, we thought as an organization it was best for us to part ways. Obviously, he wasn’t happy. He voiced his displeasure many, many times. At the end of the day, we thought it was best for him to let him go and best for us moving forward."

    On why Swearinger's comments were not constructive:
    "Well, I think if you read the articles, I think those aren’t constructive. Having a suggestion whether to play zone or man is a suggestion and that’s fine in house. With a microphone in your mouth, it's not productive for anybody. The fact of the matter is, we didn’t play good enough to win against the Titans, but we played good in certain areas – missed a few tackles here and there. We did play some zone, we played some man-to-man and unfortunately we didn’t get it done."

    On if he knew after he saw the comments that he would cut Swearinger:
    "Yeah, I mean we've had discussions before in the past obviously and it's my fault. Ultimately, it's my fault. Obviously, I didn’t make it clear to certain people that we don’t talk about our business to the media. For me to allow that to creep in is ultimately my fault. D.J. did some great things here without a doubt. We wish him nothing but the best. But at the end of the day, that’s something that this franchise or any franchise in my mind can't afford to have, so we moved on."

    On what made this situation with Swearinger different than others on the team:
    "Yeah, it was repeated offenses, yeah. We've had, I've had many talks with him in the past. Obviously, I didn’t get through to him so again, that’s my responsibility. But at the end of the day, we decided as an organization to go ahead and move on."

    On the plan at safety this weekend:
    "Yeah, we've got Ha Ha [Clinton-Dix] still. Obviously, Deshazor Everett has played a lot of ball for us. Jeremy Reaves has been an upcoming talent that we are very interested in. We are going to move Harlan Miller to safety, which he's played safety in the past, so we have it covered. We signed Alex Carter from the practice squad. We probably will boost up Alex Carter possibly here in the next couple of days and we have some other guys to look at. It will be good experience for some of those young guys to get some opportunities to play."

    On core special teamers getting reps at their natural positions this weekend:
    "There could be. I think the ultimate goal is to win the game and put our best players in place to do that. I think we're still reeling a little bit from the loss and being knocked out of the playoffs. That hurts a lot of people. At the end of the day, our job is to put the best team on the field and try to get a victory against our division rival – one of them. So, it's very important for us to do that. Jehu [Chesson] has done some good things and he could get some more reps as could [Darvin] Kidsy. But we still think Josh Doctson is a heck of a player and he needs to be out there. Jamison Crowder for sure. Michael Floyd has done some great things in the running game. Obviously having the ability to look at some different people would also be beneficial."

    On if he made the decision to cut Swearinger or if others were involved:
    "No, it has nothing to do with anything. Any decision we make from a personnel standpoint, bringing people in, cutting people, putting them on IR, it's a group decision. We take every decision that we make very seriously. We have lots of talks about it and discussions and at the end of the day, we're trying to do what's best for this organization moving forward in the long term. Whether I'm here or not, I don’t know. But I know we felt very strongly that this was the right decision."

    On if he discussed the Swearinger move with the team and what kind of message it sends:
    "I don’t know. I'm sure when you have a guy that’s been here a year and a half, two years, there's going to be some friendships that are going to happen and obviously there's a natural reaction to when you lose a good friend of yours and a pretty good player. I didn’t expect everybody to be happy about it. I wish it would have never happened, really to be honest with you, because I like D.J. and I like what he brought to this football team, his energy and his compassion and competitiveness. At the end of the day, we just can't have that. So, I think everybody will learn from it, grow from it and at the end of the day, when you work for a company or work for a team, its best that you try to be positive with your remarks."

    On if he needs to make a clear message on the standards of the organization:
    "Well we have talked about our standards here and I'd like to think we set high standards and goals for our organization and our football players, not just our teammates, our coaches, everybody. So yeah, obviously every decision we make and everything that comes out in the media, that’s a separate entity. This one here is its own entity again and we felt like we had to address it, not just for the player's sake but for the team's sake."

    On if there are veterans who've dealt with injuries that will be shut down:
    "No, I think if they have the ability to go, they're going to go. I think it's very, very important. This is pro football. If that were the case, I don’t know if we'd have 50 guys or 40 guys to play. I think everybody is banged up to some degree. Trent [Williams] is banged up a little bit, Morgan [Moses] is banged up, [Tony] Bergstrom, obviously Chase Roullier is a little bit banged up. Our linebacking crew is a little bit banged up. This is part of it. This is part of our guys, the type of guys that we brought in here, obviously great competitive spirit. Tough time right now, tough pill to swallow, not being in the playoffs without a doubt. But I do expect the type of guys we have here to step up."

    On what the mindset it is going into Sunday after this season's ups and downs:
    "Well, I think we tell our team, like I said we have high standards for our team and we expect our guys to come out and compete. Anytime they put a Redskins helmet on, we expect great things from them – individually and together as a team. Great focus, great energy, great passion for the game without a doubt, that's number one. Number two is we have to set our goals high and we have to try to figure out a way to beat Philadelphia and focus on what they do and try to come up with a plan to best put our players in a positon to make plays and win the football game. That’s the only thing we can do right now moving forward. Are we sick about the position we're in? Yes we are. There's 15, 16 other teams that are in the same boat, and I expect they are going to go out and compete the last game of the year also. It's no different here."

    On having to talk about other things besides football:
    "Yeah, obviously you don’t want to talk about that stuff, off the field stuff. I'd rather talk about the upcoming opponent, which is a very good opponent. They just got Mike Wallace back, they have two very good quarterbacks, their offensive line is intact, defense is playing extremely well. But when things happen, social media nowadays and microphones in players mouths a lot, sometimes you have to address certain things that you don’t want to. That’s part of my job and we try to communicate to our players, our staff, the right way to go about our business and keeping our business, our business. Unfortunately, we've had a few instances here that we would like to learn from and forget."


    QB Josh Johnson

    On maintaining the focus despite not being in the playoff race:
    "I think as pros this should be pretty easy for us. Me being a 10-year vet, I understand how the league works. Opportunities are very limited. So for us as a team, our motivation should be simple. We’re playing against the defending Super Bowl champs, they’re hot right now, they’re playing great football, that’s motivation one. Motivation two, one thing I’ve learned, you don’t want to put bad things on tape because that carries you, this is who you will be next year whether it be on this team or any other team that’s evaluating you and this can ultimately affect your career. My thing is to just lead by example being a veteran guy and understanding how this league works, so I mean the motivation for me is easy. I mean it should be for everybody, honestly."

    On having a different perspective as a journeyman when it comes to off-the-field controversies:
    "I mean, it’s simple for me I learned quickly you control what you can control in this league. For us, it’s preparation, it’s how we handle things on the field. We’re not the decision makers so those things are out of our control. We should leave them in the hands of the decision makers. But for me being a guy that’s been on numerous teams and experienced so many different situations, I think the biggest thing is always like I just said is to focus on what’s the most important thing and the most important thing is that game on Sunday because the eye in the sky doesn’t lie. You just want to make sure that what you represent on that field is a product of what you feel comfortable with when they go into offseason and evaluating this roster as well as many others."

    On whether or not he has been approached about spring training and if he is thinking about what lies ahead:
    "No, my main focus right now is the Philadelphia Eagles. I can’t really tell you what happens I know this league changes every second, so for me it’s just making sure that I do every day keeping the same thought process, same preparation, making sure we do what we need to do today, tomorrow, Friday, Saturday to give us the best opportunity to win on Sunday and then the chips will fall how they may. But I can’t really worry about that until after the game, that’ll kind of speak for itself, you know?"

    On if he feels any added pressure for the final game of the season and adding onto his tape:
    "No, this I keep telling you all this is fun for me, man. I’ve been on the bench, I’ve been at home, I’ve been a lot of other places where I don’t want to be. So every opportunity I get to go out there on that field I’m excited and I’m going to enjoy this moment most definitely. I just hope that all the fans come out and be able to support us. I’m pretty sure Philly will be having a lot of fans here, it’s a big game for them as well so we’d like to see a lot of burgundy and gold in the stadium because, I mean, we’re going to go out there and give it our best effort to try to come away with a W and it would be no better for us to have somebody come home with us. Especially a team that won a Super Bowl last year, I feel like that’ll be a good thing to feel good about going into the offseason."

    On whether he thinks about how evaluators or whoever may be looking at his tape in the offseason are looking at it:
    "I mean I think I’m accustomed to that because that’s the nature of this business. So I really can’t focus on that because, I mean one team may think you’re doing well and another team may not think you’re doing that well it’s all about how they feel about their perception. So, I think that’s another situation that’s out of my control. What I can control is at the end of the day how we go out there and make sure I do my part to help the Redskins get in a position to win. So, I’m just kind of re-narrowing my focus like I’ve always done and just trying to focus on that."

    On whether or not he would like to return to the Redskins:
    "Yeah, we got some wins. I mean we played well in the past two games since I’ve been here. We’ve played well, we fought hard, we won, we beat a good Jacksonville team and then we came down to the wire with a Tennessee team it just didn’t happen to go our way. I think this is another great opportunity to prove to not only ourselves but to prove to people out there that we’re not a bad football team at the end of the day. So, if we go out there with a win on Sunday beating, again the defending Super Bowl champs while they’re playing great football, I think that’d speak a lot about this team going into next year."

    On how the environment of the Titans game felt and his complete performance:
    "It was a great atmosphere, man. It was very lively, you felt the tension of the game. You could feel that it felt like a playoff game. I’ve been in playoff games on the sideline, but being in that environment felt real similar I just never actually got to play in that environment until Saturday that was the first time. So, it was a great learning lesson for me and it was an opportunity that I mean we want to be in again. We’ll see what happens on Sunday, but I would love to be in situations like that all over again. That was really cool to be able to play that game in the situation how it went down."

    On whether or not he has lived up to his own expectations of how he wanted to play coming in for the Redskins:
    "I’m probably my worst critic, honestly. So, I see a lot more of the things that I could do better, and people tell me I need to stop doing that. But, that’s just by nature who I am. I’ve just got to hold myself very accountable so, I mean if I feel like there’s a problem I just look at myself first and what I could’ve done different. I’ve been happy about the fact that we’ve been able to be in a position to win football games, that’s my job first and foremost as a quarterback to give us a chance to win and we’ve been able to do that. Once the season’s over I’ll probably reflect back on everything just to really take it all in to see how this season went, but right now I’m really trying to stay as focused as possible because I feel like that’s very necessary with the magnitude of this game that we’ve got going on Sunday and for me to lead by example, I think that’s my job and my responsibility to make sure I’m doing my part to get this team ready to go."

    On the touchdown drive against the Titans that went for over 100 offensive yards and if he ever thought he was out there for an extended time:
    "I think the linemen might have. You know, they were working hard on Saturday. But, I think what happened with that drive we just kept playing, which was the beauty of it. We had a false start, we had a good first play then we had a false start then we took a sack and then we got a conversion. We just kind of kept playing the next play and I think that’s kind of what’s important in this game is to treat each situation as its own. You play that play for what it is, and have the ability to move on whether it be good or bad to the next play and then try to execute that one as good as possible and then the next thing you know you’re down there in the red zone scoring touchdowns and then we’re excited. So, I think if we keep that approach up we’ll be able to score more touchdowns. But that drive was good, it was awesome for us to control the clock that way. It really set the tempo for the game and what type of game it will be and it ended up being a great game."

    On his 24-hour rule and if he dwelled on the Tennessee loss over Christmas:
    "No, I flushed it. I flushed it, I had to. Everybody made me, but I was pissed, I was. I was pissed. I felt like I know I’m a better player than I showed in that situation. But at the end of the day, I used Christmas as the opportunity to get ready on the Eagles. I mean, all my family is back home, they’ve been with me all year so we were good. Christmas for me was a work day. My best Christmas present would be us getting a victory on Sunday."

    On if he studied film on Christmas:
    "I was here. I was here all day. I’ve been with my family all year, we’re good, they’re good."

    On if he has had a chance to talk to QB Alex Smith this season:
    "I haven’t gotten to talk to A. Smitty, but I wish I could. If you’re watching this, ‘What’s up?’ I mean we got to spend some time together in San Fran, really good dude, man. I’m sorry what happened to him. You hate to see good people have bad things happen to him, but I’m pretty sure his spirits are high and he’s going to bounce back strong."





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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Skins Quotes 12/26/18: Gruden, Josh Johnson

    I know we are still evaluating guys like Doctson but does Jay have to say that he is ‘one helluva player’?

    The hyperbole just made me wince.
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    Default Re: Skins Quotes 12/26/18: Gruden, Josh Johnson

    Quote Originally Posted by Bulldog View Post
    I know we are still evaluating guys like Doctson but does Jay have to say that he is ‘one helluva player’?
    He's talking about "in practice".
    He just forgot to add that in at the end.
    As busy as he is, I can see how he forgot.
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    Default Re: Skins Quotes 12/26/18: Gruden, Josh Johnson

    Typical though.

    A tougher coach would have said that ‘ we have hopes for Josh but he has a long way to go still’............

    A first round pick from 2016 should have accomplished a lot more by the end of 2018 than #18 .
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