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Skins Quotes 10/8: M. Shanahan

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Boone

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October 8, 2012
Redskins Park


Executive Vice President/Head Coach Mike Shanahan


On the schedule for quarterback Robert Griffin III following his head injury:
“Today, he has basically rest and testing. Then tomorrow, if he passes the test, he’ll get a chance to get some cardio work – get a little workout in on the treadmill. Then if there are no symptoms – like headaches, dizziness, nausea, things along those lines – then he would be able to practice on Wednesday as long as there is no contact. Then, monitor that throughout the week, make sure no headaches come back or dizziness or things along those lines.”

On if the team will work out kickers this week:
“We’re going to work out a few people tomorrow.”

On how he evaluates the kickers:
“Obviously everything is based on how they kick, or if we feel very good about somebody that’s out there that we think will give us the better chance to win.”

On how Griffin III is feeling:
“He’s feeling good. I got a chance to talk to him for 15-20 minutes about an hour ago. He’s feeling good – no dizziness, no headaches, no vomiting. He feels like he’s done well on the tests he’s taken thus far. He’ll see a neurosurgeon, an independent neurosurgeon, here in about an hour or an hour and a half. He’ll go through the tests with him. Hopefully, there are no symptoms that happen over the next couple of days. We’ve gone through this process with [wide receiver] Aldrick [Robinson] last week, and so I’ve got a little bit better feel of the procedures going into this week. Aldrick obviously was out for about a minute and a half, and, at least to our awareness, Robert did not black out at all.”

On if Kirk Cousins will be the starter if Griffin III is not cleared to play:
“I think, first of all, we’re going to go through the process with Robert. Hopefully, there is no setback and he’s ready to go. I’ve got a lot of confidence in both quarterbacks, Kirk and Rex [Grossman]. Kirk has been number two for a reason – because we feel like he earned that right. We feel very good about him and where he’s at, but I also have a lot of confidence in Rex as well.”

On what Griffin III took away from his experience:
“I don’t know. You’d have to ask Robert. Anytime you get hit like that in the National Football League, at least in my experience, when a quarterback gets that first hit like he received, they slide a little bit sooner in plays that come. They kind of protect themselves a little bit more. That’s a process, a learning experience, like we talked about. After talking about it with Robert, if you slide a little bit quicker you protect yourself. We tell him how much we need him [and] how valuable he is to our football team. You’re constantly going to learn that as time goes on.”

On the amount of time Griffin III would have to wait before retaking concussion tests if he shows symptoms this week:
“I’m not exactly sure what that is. If he experiences any type of dizziness, headaches or anything along those lines, he has to go through a process with not only our doctor, but an independent doctor as well. It’s not a good sign. If he does experience any setbacks at all, the chances are he would not play.”
On the amount of first team snaps backup quarterbacks will receive in practice behind a rookie starter:
“Usually it’s normal. The second team and third team quarterback will normally get a couple reps in a period, maybe say 10 reps, maybe one or two [a period]. Then they split up the scout team reps so they are constantly getting repetition through the week.”

On the concussion testing process that the Redskins use:
“What we do is in the beginning, when the players come in, they get a test. After we get Robert on the sideline and ask him a couple of questions, we take him to the little box behind our bench to get a chance to get him by himself. They ask him a couple of questions. Initially, Robert came off the field and he knew the score, knew the quarter. About two or three minutes later, he went in the little box and he didn’t know the quarter, so it changed. After that procedure, we take him to the locker room and he goes through a standard test and then they compare that to the test when he first comes in for his physical. And at that time, they determine if it’s a concussion or not. When the test was not the same as the initial test he took, that’s when the doctors come up with a concussion.”

On developing a game plan early during the week with pending injuries to starters:
“Like I said, let me use Aldrick Robinson for example. Here’s a guy last week, in pregame warm-ups he gets hit and is out for about a minute and a half. About 10 minutes later, he feels great. There are no symptoms and he’s ready to go every day with no signs. I’ve also been with guys like that who have been hit in the head and they feel fine then two days later they have headaches, they have dizziness and you see they can’t play. We should find out in the next few days what happens. Right now, it looks good. I’m not really sure it stays that way, but the professionals will monitor his situation and let us know if is able to play or not. We surely have nothing to do with it.”

On the injury status of safety Brandon Meriweather:
“I’d say it’s going to take Brandon in the area of four weeks before he comes back. That’s just guessing. That’s what our doctor thinks right now, looking at his knee.”

On the impact of previous concussions while testing players:
“I’m sure they take everything into consideration. They take those tests, the baseline test in Indy, the test they have when they come in for their physical. I’m sure they look at all of those things.”

On the Redskins’ third-down conversion rate:
“You’re always critical of yourself, especially when you’re poor. We missed a third-down-and-one, third-down-and-two, third-down-and-three, two-third-down-and-seven, and a third-down-and-eight with Robert. Then with Kirk [Cousins], a third-and-nine, third and 10, and a third-and-11 and we hit one of those. Obviously, it’s an area that we have to get better at. We were also 0-2 in the red zone, something we’ve been very good at. You take a combination of killing those drives, being one-for-nine on third-down and 0 -2 in the red zone, it’s truly hard to win a football game. Saying that, there were a number of positives with the way we ran the football. We make a couple of those third downs, just three or four, and keep drives going, you have a chance to have a dominating day. Still had an opportunity to win, even with those crazy stats as they were. But to beat a good football team, we have to play better than that as a whole.”
On the best case scenario if Griffin III passes all concussion-related tests:
“Tomorrow, what we are going to do is he will get some work on the treadmill. He will get some agility drills and hopefully he is OK. If he is not, then he is evaluated the next day without practice.”

On Griffin III getting hurt while scrambling:
“Each game is a learning experience. He is going to learn a lot as time goes on. He is very competitive like most young quarterbacks are. You want to make every first down and you want to extend every play to the last second. Part of that is knowing that we have to have you out there so these quarterbacks learn in time when to slide. Now if it is the Super Bowl or you are going for a playoff win, then you take some of those chances. But part of process is staying healthy and obviously being out there for your teammates. And it was a learning experience for Robert.”

On how much the concussion awareness of has changed over the years:
“To be honest with you, being around on the sidelines for a while, you kind of get a feel for it. Robert came off the field and I looked him in the eyes, I knew it was something wrong. I said, 'Go see the doctors.’ He said, 'No, I’m OK.’ I said, 'No, you’re not OK.’ I think you can see it when you look someone in the eyes when you are looking at them all the time how they are feeling, sometimes you don’t. Through the years, especially dealing with quarterbacks, when they get their bell rung for whatever reason, you can tell when something is wrong.”

On the change of the culture of concussions:
“The experts are in charge of it now. We are not. We have no say. They have a standardized format which I think is great. It takes us out of the equation and what is best for the player is usually best for the team.”

On if he thinks the report given from the sideline regarding Griffin III’s injury was congruent with the NFL’s policy:
“I really do. When you look at him on the sideline, Robert said to me he was fine. I said, 'You are not fine. I don’t think you are fine. Your eyes look a little glassy.’ The doctors talked to him and he knew the quarter and the score. So they took him back in that little box behind our bench and asked him again, 'What was the quarter? What was the score?’ The second time he missed it, the first time he got it. That is when we took him in the locker room and administered the test for a concussion. And that is when it was decided he had a concussion because the tests were not the same. That is when the doctor’s knew there was some type of problem.”

On if the phrase “shaken up” is appropriate to describe an injury:
“I’m not sure what the appropriate phrase is; I use it all the time. Guys look like he’s 'shaken up.’ Now that doesn’t mean he has a concussion. But that is why they go through these procedures because they don’t let someone like me make those decisions, which they shouldn’t because we are not experts in that area. But the people who are experts, when you think a guy has something wrong with his head, we let the experts look at it.”

On if the offensive line is blocking better:
“We’ve got guys working together for a couple of years. That is a big difference. I think they are more comfortable with the scheme. I think they are more comfortable with each other. The offensive line has to work together to get better. Obviously, the quarterback always presents a problem because he has the capabilities of running quarterback keeps, options, and all the things we are able to do. All those things are a factor as well as the speed of the wide receivers.”

On the injury to safety Brandon Meriweather:
“MCL and PCL. Second and third degree. So he had an additional setback with his knee.”

On the safeties’ performance:
“I thought for three quarters we gave up seven points in a two-minute drive and we scored seven points on defense. So we kept them in check for three quarters. I was disappointed that we couldn’t keep the ball going on offense and you’re not able to get the third down for three quarters and keeping your defense on the field too much. We have done a good job of kind of controlling the tempo of the game and controlling the time of possession and we weren’t able to do that in that game. I think that really hurt us. We kept the defense on the field too long.”

On tackle Jammal Brown:
“He just went up to New York to talk to his doctor. The doctor feels very good. He’s going through conditioning. He’s going through football-related drills. The doctors feel like there’s a chance for him to be back after the bye week. So that’s a good sign.”

On if the bye week is the earliest Brown would return:
“Right now, that’s what they think. Could change.”

On quarterback Cousins replacing Griffin III instead of Grossman:
“It’s tough for anybody to come into that situation, especially with limited reps during the week. You’ve just got to go with your evaluation of your people. Like I said, I’ve got the utmost confidence in both guys. That’s a great feeling to have. I can’t say that I’ve felt that way about my second and third string quarterbacks very often. A lot of times, you’ll feel good about one, not two. I’ve got probably the best situation I’ve been in for a long time.”

On the activation process for Brown:
“I believe that we still have a chance to activate him right at the bye week.”

On if he is satisfied with the long snapping and holding:
“Yes, I am.”
 

Fear The Spear

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On if Kirk Cousins will be the starter if Griffin III is not cleared to play:

“I think, first of all, we’re going to go through the process with Robert. Hopefully, there is no setback and he’s ready to go. I’ve got a lot of confidence in both quarterbacks, Kirk and Rex [Grossman]. Kirk has been number two for a reason – because we feel like he earned that right. We feel very good about him and where he’s at, but I also have a lot of confidence in Rex as well.”
Wow. All those sentences, just to basically say, "I am not answering the question"
 

Fear The Spear

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Very good news....Pulombus is a sieve...especially at critical times.


Thanks for posting this.
I wouldn't consider that "very good" news.

So, at best, we get Brown for half a season.

At worst, his fragile frame has another setback, and re-injures himself, ending his season, and possibly career.

Or somewhere in the middle ground, he plays on and off for the rest of the season, and even when he plays, he's not back to his prior level or 100%

I'm not getting my hopes up. I'll believe it when I see it, when it comes to Brown's return.
 

Lanky Livingston

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Yeah...if Brown plays more than 4 games this season, I'll be shocked.

EDIT: but a large trash-can would be more effective than Polumbus, so I guess it does count as "good" news.
 

Canadian Hog

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Part of me says that even if Griffin is cleared to play this week, you sit him down on Sunday and take every precaution necessary. We need to look at the big picture here. This team isn't going to the playoffs this year, Robert is obviously the cornerstone of this franchise and all future success over the next 10-12 years hinges on his health and play, and it would be a travesty to have a situation develop where the guy has to fight concussion problems at such a young age.

He's far too important to just throw him back to the wolves against the Vikings in Week 6 in what appears to be a season where we won't be playing for much come December.
 

Boone

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I guess the thought would be, if he appears to have fully recovered from his concussion, he's not at any more risk to experience one next Sunday than he is any other future Sunday in his career.

Ultimately, the idea that you can protect him - it may be wishful thinking. He's got to learn to protect himself.
 

Lanky Livingston

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I guess the thought would be, if he appears to have fully recovered from his concussion, he's not at any more risk to experience one next Sunday than he is any other future Sunday in his career.

Ultimately, the idea that you can protect him - it may be wishful thinking. He's got to learn to protect himself.
Being a doctor you're the expert on this stuff, but I thought existing concussions made having another one much more likely?
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TomE

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Junior Seau would beg to differ
Did Seau have the benefits of the current precautionary medical testing that is now being done?

Griff cannot play without clearance, which is a good thing. The onus is on the doctors to get it right not we of the internet medical society.

All I'm saying is that if he's cleared then he needs to get back in the saddle and ride with a new respect for the power of the horse.
 

Miles Monroe

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Did Seau have the benefits of the current precautionary medical testing that is now being done?

Griff cannot play without clearance, which is a good thing. The onus is on the doctors to get it right not we of the internet medical society.

All I'm saying is that if he's cleared then he needs to get back in the saddle and ride with a new respect for the power of the horse.
While the testing now is better then when Junior played, it's on the lower end of the medical testing scale from what I can see. I haven't heard of them doing CT Scans, and IMO, if they were really concerned about head injuries, every player would have a set of scans prior to ever playing a down. That way, they would have something to compare to if a head injury does happen to the player.
 

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My understanding is that they now do baseline tests when players come in, I have no idea what they are but they probably do not include CT as you suggest.
 

Miles Monroe

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My understanding is that they now do baseline tests when players come in, I have no idea what they are but they probably do not include CT as you suggest.
I'd love to know just what the base line testing is. Depending on what school of thought you subscribe to, one contends that concussions are tied to early onset Alzheimers.
 

Lanky Livingston

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I'd love to know just what the base line testing is. Depending on what school of thought you subscribe to, one contends that concussions are tied to early onset Alzheimers.
I also read a fascinating study that suggested Lou Gherig may have had complications from multiple concussions and not ALS.
 

Miles Monroe

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I also read a fascinating study that suggested Lou Gherig may have had complications from multiple concussions and not ALS.
I'll have to polk around to find that. It's a subject i have a great interest in. My dad had early onset, and they attributed it to a had injury in a car accident. I've had three concussions, so the study the more I know, the more I can help myself. Saw a special on concussions in youth sports. It focused on the second highest group sustaining them, female soccer players. Pretty scary.
 

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