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Skins Quotes 1/4: M. Shanahan


The Commissioner
Staff member
BGO Ownership Group
Apr 11, 2009
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Greensboro, NC

Marine Corps Virginia

January 4, 2013
Redskins Park

Executive Vice President/Head Coach Mike Shanahan

On how much safety DeJon Gomes practiced:
“Enough where he was limited, but he practiced.”

On if cornerback Cedric Griffin showed him enough to warrant being activated:
“I hope so. That’s why we got him up.”

On if he is ready to play without guard Kory Lichtensteiger:
“Like I said, very similar to [tackle] Trent [Williams], Trent didn’t practice during the week either. We’ll test him out before the game and do what we think gives us the best chance to win.”

On guard Josh LeRibeus:
“Well, he got all the reps, so he got some repetition during the week which is a good thing. A lot of times, guys will go out early and somebody is forced into play that hasn’t had the repetition. LeRibeus got the reps this week and Kory’s got the experience so we’ll see how he is before the game.”

On possibly resodding FedExField:
“Sometimes resodding is good. I’ve had resodding that’s worked quite well. I’ve been on some resods that were very, very poor. We rushed for a lot of yards last week and the surface was good enough to not slip, so that’s a pretty good sign. I know it doesn’t look that good but relative to the footwork, I didn’t think it was bad at all from a running back standpoint as well as the wide receivers. I didn’t see people slipping and so that’s a good sign. Anyway, both teams have to play on the field.”

On if LeRibeus would start if Lichtensteiger can’t:
“Yes, he would start if Kory can’t.”

On if there is any sign of playoff nerves:
“No. I think you said it best. It’s been seven games with a do-or-die situation. So I think our mindset has been the same. Great preparation during the week and you’ve got to go get it done on the weekend.”

On if he would prefer a high-scoring game or a close win:
“I just want to have one more point than they do at the end of the game. The mindset is some games are tight, 10-7, 10-9. Other games are 35-34. I think both teams have the capabilities to score points. Both defenses have opportunities to shut down offenses too. You never know in a game like this which way it’s going to go. It should be a good game.”

On three rookie quarterbacks playing locally on Sunday:
“Well, first of all, I think you talk about the team. Talk about Seattle. They’ve got the No. 1-ranked defense in the National Football League, fewest points scored, a very good offensive line, and a good scheme as well. We’ve got a little experience over the last few years with our offense. We’ve been able to put a nucleus of people together and with the addition of [quarterback] Robert [Griffin III] and [running back] Alfred [Morris] who have been able to make some strides. And relative to Indy, since we don’t go against them like the other teams or look at teams in the AFC like you look at teams in the NFC, but they’ve done a fantastic job as well. So, you’re just trying to take advantage of the opportunity now. But they are three excellent quarterbacks that are playing extremely well.”

On Director of Player Personnel Morocco Brown:
“Morocco’s done a great job. He’s a hard worker, a very dedicated, a very detailed person. If you need to know who’s out there and who gives you the best chance to help your football team when somebody goes down, he does a fantastic job of watching film and a great job of evaluating players.”

On if he feels it would further Brown’s career if he interviewed elsewhere:
“Oh, without a question. You’re always pulling for guys that advance if it’s in your organization or another organization. You want people that work hard to get an opportunity to advance themselves. As we all know, Morocco’s got a chance to at least interview for the GM job and he’d do a great job if selected.”

On if there is a possibility of not wearing a brace on Sunday:
“It’s a medical decision to support the LCL, so you don’t stretch it in a certain way so he can injure it. I shared that with you a few days ago.”

On if Griffin III will definitely wear a brace on Sunday:

On special teams having a major impact on the game:
“Well, it could be a big difference. [Seattle kick returner Leon] Washington is a difference maker, a Pro Bowl player. He’s a Pro Bowl player for a reason. He has a lot of respect from a lot of different coaches and players. He plays accordingly. He has the chance to make a big play and you have a guy like [Seattle defensive end Red] Bryant who has consistently penetrated lines for field goal blocks. It’s been something that we’ve concentrated on and we’ll have to play well in those areas to win.”

On what he likes most about his team:
“It starts with trying to get players who, first of all, play at a high level and I think we’ve been able to do that. We’ve talked about character from day one – guys who are willing to work hard on a day-to-day basis regardless if things are going good or bad. We’ve got the work ethic and sense of urgency that you look for. I think we’ve got that type of football team right now. We’ve got a young football team with a lot of guys that we brought in as draft choices as well as free agents surrounded by veterans who have been around for the last three years. I just like the character of our team.”

On linebacker Rob Jackson being used at other positions than linebacker:
“It’s OK to be an outside linebacker in the 3-4 because if normally you’re in the nickel package, you’re the outside defensive end rushing the quarterback. As I’ve said before, Rob has done a fantastic job on the scout team as an outside linebacker or defensive end. He’s got the quickness to put pressure on the quarterback. He really stepped up the second half of the season and started playing at a very high level. He’s one of the reasons why we’ve been able to win the games that we’ve won.”

On if he has any nostalgia about past playoff runs:
“I think two out of the my last three years in Denver before we were in the AFC Championship game and we lost a tough one – we had the opportunity to beat New England and we lost to Pittsburgh – they went on to win the Super Bowl. The next two out of three years we lost the last game of the season and you realize that it’s all about getting into the playoffs. Once you get there, you have an opportunity. Pittsburgh won the Super Bowl and I believe it was the six-seed that year. It’s how you play once you get there. We’re excited to be here and hopefully we take the opportunity to win some games.”

On how he defines character:
“People being accountable. People taking great pride in what they do. Doing the little things the right way. Accountability. Preparation. Knowing the time you have to put in. That you’re only as strong –as the old saying goes – the weakest link. You have a football team, 46 guys dressing. If everybody plays for each other, you have the chance to do something for your team. If you’re playing individually for yourself and accolades, chances are you can get to the playoffs, but you can’t win it. What I mean by that is, wide receivers taking pride in blocking. You don’t have that all the time. In return, the offensive line taking pride in pass protection, in play action pass. When you’re playing hard for each other usually good things happen. That’s on both sides of the football. So often guys get caught up into not playing for each other and it’s really hard to do something special unless they’re playing for each other.”

On how Griffin III practiced with his brace today:
“The LCL usually takes about a month to heal. We’re right around a month right now. So hopefully it feels better this week than last week. It he looks like he does at practice. With the brace, you have to work through it because it’s going to protect him. But I think, as each week goes by, he’s going to be more comfortable with his knee. Is he 100 percent? I think we’ll find out on Sunday. I can’t tell you that for sure.”

On what it means to play a playoff game at home instead of on the road:
“That’s why your first goal is winning the NFC East because you’re guaranteed a home playoff game, regardless of what your record is. You could be 8-8 and if you win your division, you’re guaranteed a home playoff game. That’s why everyone shoots to win their division. Everybody would like a bye if possible, but if you’re not in that situation what better situation than a playing a home playoff game in front of your fans? That crowd noise is always a big factor.”

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