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Skins Quotes 11/18/11: M. Shanahan


The Commissioner
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November 18, 2011
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Executive Vice President/Head Coach Mike Shanahan

On tackle Jammal Brown progressing from his injury:
“You never really know when you have that groin [injury]. Wednesday and Thursday weren’t normal practices for us, so he didn’t push it that hard. Today, it’s really hard to tell – going to be a pre-game decision. We’ll see how he works out. Same with [Sean] Locklear.”

On what Brown has to do to show that he can start:
“You’ve got to be able to get in a stance. You’ve got to be able to push off. You’re going against some very quick and very powerful defensive linemen. You’ve got to feel comfortable you can get the job done.”

On why running back and safety injuries are the hardest to know whether or not someone is ready to play:
“Well, you can practice and, until you actually take a look at a running back – how he cuts, how he’s able to make somebody miss, how you run after contact… You have to be in live situations to see a person actually cut and see if you can break tackles, see if he can hold onto the football [and] pick up different type of blitzes. On the defensive side, the safety, very seldom do they bring people to the ground. So you’ve got running situations and passing situations. You’re not sure if they can read your keys. Can they react quick to support the run with all different formations? Do they have the right gap responsibility? Are they stepping up when they should be going back? To me, it’s the hardest position to really evaluate until it gets to game situations.”

On if he holds things back against a divisional opponent in the first game to set things up in the second meeting:
“No, usually if you have that type of mindset, you won’t be coaching very long. You better take care of that day because, if you don’t take care of that day, you won’t have to worry about games in the future.”

On how much better of a feel he has for the Cowboys since it is his fourth time facing them:
“We look at a lot of film throughout the offseason. You get a pretty good feel for their personnel. Each year is a little bit different with free agency and the draft. You’re constantly trying to keep up on things. Usually most teams you’ve got a good feel for their personnel and good feel for the personnel in the division because the games are so big.”

On the possibility of tackle Willie Smith playing against the Cowboys:
“Same thing with those offensive linemen – they are on our team for a reason and he’s really done a good job. How he reacts in game situations you never know. Maurice [Hurt] did a good job reacting the first time he got in there. He played well for a guy with no experience. Willie’s still learning – can he transfer from practice to the game situation? He’s got a lot of talent. He’s got a big upside. We’ll see when he plays.”

On shortening practices on Wednesday and Thursday:
“We’re beat up. It’s not only for the guys that are beat up, but when you’re practicing at the type of tempo we practice and you’ve got to run the scout team, you just take those guys that are healthy and you drive them into the ground. When you have as many guys out as we did, can’t have normal practices or you start to get a number of other guys hurt.”
I guess at this point it would be good to see what Willie Smith has. When a friend who went to ECU heard we got him, he told me we got a steal. He was extremely surprised Smith went undrafted. And this guy is pretty knowledgable about sports. He has a radio show in the OBX. Well, that really doesn't mean that much does it? :laugh:

Could the left side of our offensive line for years to come be a 7th rounder and an UDFA?
it would mark a first.

when was the last time an undrafted player was actually unearthed by Washington scouts who went on to have a solid NFL career?

Oh, that's right Marty did find Antonio Pierce in 2001, but he starred for the Giants because the Redskins didn't want to pay him (while they were paying everyone else).

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