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Skins Quotes 6/13/12: Haslett/Morris/Shanahans

It is done.


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

Marine Corps Virginia

June 13, 2012
Redskins Park

Executive Vice President/Head Coach Mike Shanahan

On the team’s agenda for the last day of minicamp Thursday:
“Tomorrow, what we’re going to do is when the players get in, they’ll get in around 7:30-8 a.m., we’ll work out until about 9 a.m. and we’ll run and we’ll lift. Then, we’ll have a couple hours of film, but we’re not going to practice tomorrow afternoon. We’re a little banged up. We’ve done a heck of a job throughout the offseason, all these OTA’s. Tomorrow will be more of a workout, running and lifting, more of a meeting, but we won’t go through what we did today.”

On assessing the team’s performance during the minicamp:
“I think this has really worked out well with the first two weeks in phase one and the conditioning, and getting some great meeting time. [Coaches] spent some time with the players to get them, at least a lot of the new players, accustomed to what we’re doing on offense, defense and special teams. In the [past] three weeks, we had a chance to work with each other, and again, watch film with each other for a couple of hours. We haven’t had a chance to do that through the last few offseasons. To be able to spend that time, again, getting to learn the system, feeling comfortable with each other over the last four weeks with two weeks of three days with the OTA’s and this week with the minicamps and the week before with four days, it’s been a big plus for us. We got a lot done. Hopefully, with a five-week vacation, they’ll come back ready to go.”

On tight end Chris Cooley’s injury status:
“He had a slight hamstring. One day, he had a little bit of a tight groin. The other time, it was a hamstring. They’re just minor. If we practiced tomorrow, he could go. But again, you just don’t want to over-push him and set him back, but it should be no problem at all. The great part about it is the knee is responding 100 percent. He’s had no swelling. The knee has not been drained. The knee has no side effects, no treatment, so that’s a big plus. Anytime you go full speed, especially running routes, it’s not unusual for guys to have a little setback here and there, but his is very minor.”

On if he expects wide receiver Leonard Hankerson and the rest of the team to enter training camp at full health next month:
“He’ll be able to go Day One of camp. Right now, I don’t think [anybody would need to be held out]. I think everybody should be able to go. Hankerson, we could push him in this minicamp. He was doing drill work. The last couple of days you could see the routes that he ran were full-speed. I’m glad we didn’t try to push him or overwork him because I thought we could set him back. Hopefully, over the next five-six weeks, he’ll just be getting better and better.

On Brandon Banks:
“We’ve got a good look at Brandon. He’s done a very good job at coming in in-shape. He gained about 10 pounds. You could tell that he’s been working out extremely hard in the offseason. And I think he understands how competitive our situation is right now on the football team. Not only does he have to do a great job as the return man, but he’s got to help us at the wide receiver position as well if he wants to make our football team.”

On whether or not the requirements are higher this year for Brandon Banks:
“Yeah, I called him in early and I told him that he was going to have to help us at the wide receiver position as well if he wanted to make this football team. And he accepted a challenge and came in in excellent shape, and it’s really positive what he’s done. Hopefully he can continue to do it.”

On Santana Moss’ fitness during the offseason:
“We talked about him. You know the thing about Santana is he’s a man. He’s a man’s man. We talked to him very frankly and said, 'Hey, you’ve got to come in in the best shape as you get older. Sometimes your skills will go down a little bit unless you’re in great shape.’ And he lost 10-15 pounds, probably closer to 15, and to me, he looks like what he looked like three years ago. And that’s what you’ve got to do. I mean, as you get older, you’ve got to make sure you’re in better shape, and if not, then usually you’re not working for a long time. And he took the challenge, came in probably as good of shape as he’s been in the last three years. And he’s been impressive. Hopefully he’ll continue to stay in shape and do the things he’s been doing over the last five or six weeks, or nine weeks I should say.”

On Robert Griffin III’s Olympic trials four years ago:
“All I can say, he won’t be in the Olympic trials. That’s really the only thing I’m concerned about. Obviously what he did a number of years ago was pretty impressive. He has that type of speed, and he can compete at that level. It gives you an idea of the ability he does have. To even think of a guy, a football player, having that type of speed, especially at the quarterback position, is very unusual. But it gives you an idea of what type of athlete he is.”

On the pressure of having one shot like the Olympic trials:
“The thing about the NFL is you get more than one shot, so you’re going to get a number of shots as time goes on. But you’ve got to think that anyone that’s an Olympian, maybe they want to take advantage of the opportunity that they don’t get a lot of shots, and hopefully we do well as a country.”

On Raheem Morris’ energy:
“What I like to do is have people being themselves. You can’t fake it. You’ve got to be what you are. And Raheem is a lot of fun. He’s an excellent football coach; he brings a lot energy. Coaches have a lot of fun. Some days the offense will have a great day, and the next day the defense will have a great day. And there’s a lot of trash talking right now with some of these young guys on the staff, but it’s fun to see. And players buy into it, and it’s a good camaraderie.”

On his assessment of the offense:
“Well we’ve thrown a lot out at them in a short amount of time. Like we talked about before, we’ve got a number of new people here. [We’re] young. We’ve got some free agents. We’ve got some additional talent. And that’s what you’ve got to do. In order to play together, you’ve got to have a lot of people going in the same direction, and to be together for nine weeks is a big plus for us, at least from the start. Obviously, all the rookies didn’t have that much time. But over the next five weeks, they get a chance to go over it again, and once we start training camp, everybody is on the same page. And hopefully we’re going the same direction.”

On Robert Griffin III meeting with the other players during the break:
“I just read about it in the newspaper to be honest with you. We’ve been going pretty hard here over the past five weeks, and these guys are going to work out over the next five weeks. We want these guys to come back in better shape than they’re in right now so they can last for the season. If you do have an injury, recovery time is so much quicker if you’re in great shape. We’ve got a dedicated football team; I’ll be disappointed if they’re not in great shape. A lot of these quarterbacks and receivers will get together on their own, but you know the key is if they don’t have the ability to get together, they’re working out and keeping on top of their business.”

On what the rookies will be doing when they come back on July 16:
“It’s just more a review of film, just going over the installation schedule, getting in a good lift, a good run, maybe a couple hours, not to overdo it, but to get some added time in meetings, a chance to ask any questions over the next month or five weeks. With them, looking at film, kind of going over any questions they might have with their position or maybe another position. It’s a constant learning experience for these young guys. They come back with a lot of questions and you get a chance to spend seven or eight days with them before the veterans come, and it always helps them.”

Offensive Coordinator Kyle Shanahan

On how Robert Griffin III has done thus far:
“I think he’s done a real good job. He came in being in a totally different offense, learning totally new terminology, trying new plays he hasn’t done before. It’s been a work in progress. He’s gotten better each day. He works as hard as anyone can at it, both on the field and off the field. And it’s been a really good camp for him.”

On how Robert Griffin III has surprised him thus far:
“Spending some time with him and getting to know the guy, you get to see how passionate he is about the game. So you could tell coming in how hard he was going to work. It’s real important to the guy. So I haven’t really been surprised with any of that. I don’t think you have to be a coach to see how talented the guy is. I think everyone knows that, so there wasn’t that much surprise there. But he’s picked it up faster than I expected. Anytime a guy doesn’t do a lot of drop-back stuff and things like that for really his whole career, it’s going to take time. And with him, he’s really showing improvement each day. He can comprehend what he needs to do and what he needs to get better at, and it’s all about giving him reps. You know he needs reps. He’s got to let his body go through the muscle memory and everything. But from a mental standpoint and just his vision and grasping what he needs to work on, it’s been very good.”

On his plan for the playbook next year:
“That’s always really evolving. You’ve got to see what he can handle, what the other players can handle. The whole offseason is about finding out who your players are, what they can do, what they do best. So you don’t want to just limit him to too much stuff because then you don’t really know what he’s capable of. So we’re throwing a lot at him. Some days are better than others. Sometimes it takes two steps forward, a step back, but it’s the whole process of learning everything. And you’ve got to know it mentally just to have a chance, and he knows it mentally. Now it’s about going in there and not having to think and just reacting. You know he’s done a good job with it, and the more reps he can get at it, the quicker the process can happen.”

On his advice for Robert Griffin III for the break:
“Like I said, he needs a lot of reps, and that’s going to continue throughout the year too. There’s no better rep than true game-time experience. So it’s going to be a work in progress all the time. But the guy is very talented, and he works at it. So as he does grow, and he’ll always get better, but the guy can do a lot of stuff and make some plays while we’re waiting for that to fully come.”

On whether or not he wants Robert Griffin III to relax during the break before training camp:
“I want him to relax and stuff and not just be stressed out about it all the time, but it’s too hard of a position. To me, it’s one of the hardest positions in the world. It’s a lot. There’s only really 32 people on the planet who can do it, and according to most people, only 10 of those guys are what people want. So it’s a tough thing to do, and if it’s not something you’re working at every day, you can’t just show up and get it done. You’re smart enough to know what you’re supposed to do, but it’s not just knowing, it’s reacting. And if your body isn’t constantly going through those reps and doing things by yourself just constantly for that muscle memory, you’re going to get in that pocket in the heat of battle and you’re going to be thinking. And once you’re thinking, you’re going to be hit. So you know it’s reaction, and you’ve got to stay on top of it every day. The season is going to be here before you know it.”

On the biggest challenge for Robert Griffin III:
“I think the biggest challenge is having to follow rules and stuff. There’s so much to football that it takes guys’ careers to learn. And you know you’re trying to get everything at him at once, and no matter how smart you are and how much you give to him, it’s not about just being able to know it. It’s what I keep saying. You know it’s about repping and going. And you’re not always going to get those reps. It’s been great that we’ve had enough people in camp where we can go two fields a lot. So he’s been able to get a lot more reps than you normally do when you only can go one field. Just to continue to get those reps, and I look forward to the preseason games too where he can get some live reps, and get him as many of those reps as possible so he’s ready week one.”

On things that can be added to the playbook because of Robert Griffin III’s talent:
“That’s what our job is. That’s everything you do, no matter who you’ve got. That’s all your players. Your job is to try everything out, see what these guys are good at, and you study it. Study it everyday of your life. You do it with them, you do it by yourself, and you collectively figure out what gives our team the best chance to move the chains, what gives our team the best chance to win a game, whether it’s scoring a lot of points or whether it’s really just trying to conserve that clock and not turn it over. And each game is different. Each week is different, depending on where we’re going. It’s really just trying to understand each other, understand what each other is capable of doing and putting those guys in the best position to succeed.”

On if he sees a difference in Robert Griffin III’s keeper game and drop-back game:
“Not really, because believe it or not, he didn’t do a lot of keepers in college either. So he doesn’t have a ton of experience with it. But whenever you run 4.3, you know you’ve got a pretty good advantage there running keeper. So it doesn’t always have to be a great look and stuff, and he can still outrun some people. So he’s got a huge advantage over doing that stuff than anyone I’ve ever been around, probably anyone I’ve ever seen. But it takes reps with both the decision making once you get outside the pocket, staying in that pocket, when to leave and make a play with your legs, and when to hang in there and let the routes develop. So it’s been a work in progress with both, but he’s extremely talented in both. Just as talented he is as a runner, which everyone knows running 4.3, he’s that talented as a passer too. He throws it as good as anyone. It’s just about getting the reps, learning how to progress and stay in rhythm and read coverages and do everything.”

On whether or not certain passes by Robert Griffin III stand out:
“I don’t really think so. I don’t think it’s about certain passes. He’s capable of making any throw. Everyone knows how strong his arm is, and he can throw it far and he can throw it with a lot of heat too. But he also has got a good touch on it too. I think that his biggest work is being able to make those same plays when his body is out of position, you know, when the pocket isn’t clean, when he’s under duress, being able to hang in there and make something from his back foot and do things like that.”

On balancing Robert Griffin III’s speed and keeping him protected:
“I think we’ll find that out as we go. But you definitely don’t want to run him every time because you don’t want to get him hurt. But also you don’t want to run him every time because it’s pretty easy for a defense to stop the guy if you’re running him every time. That’s why one of the most exciting things about Robert is he can definitely make plays with his legs, but he’s just as special of a thrower too. So when he can get that full package together, it’s not too tough for a coordinator. Because he’s good at both. You do what the defense is giving to you. And when you’re capable of doing that, you know the defense can’t be right.”

On his excitement to use Robert Griffin III’s physical tools:
“Yeah, it is exciting. We’ve had a different quarterback each year we’ve played here. So everybody does some similar things. Everybody is capable of doing pretty much everything. Even though some of our quarterbacks that we’ve had here aren’t the fastest guys, we still do as much keepers as almost anybody, even with slower quarterbacks in our past. So you definitely get an advantage when you get a faster guy in here. The challenge for me is like it is every year: figuring out what they do best. And it’s not always just him. He might do this best, but maybe we don’t have the areas somewhere else that we can go to that. So you’ve got to figure out something else to do that can help in that area. So the more that he can do, the easier it is. It’s awesome when that’s why you trade up to get a guy like this because he’s talented enough to do everything.”

On his excitement for the offense:
“Yeah, I am very excited. These two receivers we brought in I’m extremely excited about. They were two guys we wanted, and we succeeded in getting both of them. To put Robert in, and just so everyone knows the plays he can make, to get some of these guys healthy…You know, we played with a lot of our linemen towards the end of last year who were seventh-round picks, undrafted guys, who never had experience before. And the fact that we played with those guys and gave them some experience, we’re still expecting our starters to come back and be healthy this year, but to know going through last year with some of those guys that we feel a little bit better that we have some depth at that position too. So if we lose some of our guys like we did last year versus Philly in that first game, now some guys are coming in who it’s not their first snap in the NFL. They had to play for about six weeks last year, and you just feel better as a whole. You feel like you can survive some injuries, where in the past you felt like, 'Hey, we’ll be alright as long as you don’t get an injury.’”

On Pierre Garçon:
I just thought without a doubt that he was the best wide-out available. You look at Pierre and you don’t really, as a coach, at least myself and most coaches I’ve been around, you don’t look at stats. Wide receivers can’t really control whether they get the ball, whether they don’t get the ball. You look at how the guy is wired. How talented is he? Can he get off bump? Does he have the physical build to separate versus NFL corners? And he’s as talented as it gets when it comes to that stuff. Does he have good hands? Is he physical? Pierre is fast as can be, he can get off bump, he can get in and out of his breaks, he has good hands, and he’s fearless. He will block as good as anyone, he’ll put his face into anyone, he gets after it, he competes, and he’s everything I look for in a wide receiver.

On any concerns with the running game:
“Anytime when you’ve got injuries like we’ve had, when Tim’s [Hightower] not practicing and other two guys have been in and out with injuries, we’ve been practicing with some other guys who haven’t played for us yet. You always get worried about that but it’s so early right now that it’s part of the offseason and it’s part of training camp too. We’ve got a big group of guys in there and you just hope they’re all healthy when the season comes. You deal with what you have. I love our players. I hope they can stay healthy so you feel very comfortable, but when they don’t, it’s part of the game. Someone else has to step up.

On Santana Moss:
“Santana’s been great.We got Santana to come in, lose some weight and he did. You know a lot of guys can lose weight by starving themselves, staying in the steam and dehydrating themselves and just getting on a scale. Santana did it the right way. I feel he’s more powerful. He’s more explosive. He’s about 10 or 15 pounds lighter and he’s been great out there. He has a better understanding of the offense. This is the first offseason where we’ve gotten to meet with our guys. You know, when we first got here, we met with our guys but we didn’t have any tape. We were showing them all Houston stuff and Denver stuff trying to teach them what we were going to do that year. The next year was last year and we had a lockout so we didn’t meet with anyone. Santana’s entire offseason, he came in, to me he came in possessed. He was ready to go. You saw it physically, and then to see him in the meeting rooms, he’s been great. He’s been so attentive and it’s shown over to the field. The guy’s not thinking out there, he’s confident in his speed. He feels confident in his knowledge of the offense and there’s no hesitation. He’s been very exciting.”

On Defensive Backs Coach Raheem Morris livening things up:
“Yeah he gets on my nerves a little bit [laughter]. No, I’ve known Raheem for a while. He’s one of my boys. He’s funny. We go back and forth, and he’s a little louder out there than myself but I’m very used to it. I think it’s fun. It adds competition. It makes us enjoy practice a little bit more and not to mention he’s as good a coach as I’ve been around.”

On Chris Cooley and Jammal Brown:
“Both of them have done good. You know Cooley, came in last year after the lockout and you could tell right when he came he was hurting and he was trying to fight through it but you could tell he had some knee trouble. He tried to fight through it I think for about four games, then he hurt his hand, and with his knee issues you know we had to put him on IR. For him to come here-it’s the one thing you’re looking for is his knee bothering him- and out there he doesn’t have any hitch in his step, his knee seems clean. He’s not complaining about it at all. He never does really complain about it but we can watch him tightly. You know he’s not limping around and he looks like the old Chris. Jammal’s been good. Jammal had some flexibility issues last year. He got a little tight with some injuries, spent this whole offseason doing yoga. He’s a newfound man. He’s flexible. He’s always trying to show us how he can touch his toes and stuff, and it’s really helped his game. He can open his hips more and it gives him a much better chance on that open edge.

On the progress of Kory Lichtensteiger:
“We drafted some guys there, some inside players, so we’ve got a little depth there especially with some of the guys who played last year. I expect Kory [Lichtensteiger] to come back. I expect him to be our starter. I expect him to play as good as he was when he left off. He is coming off an ACL [injury]. He hasn’t been able to do anything at practice yet. I think he could if we absolutely needed him too, but I think he’ll be ready for training camp and knowing Kory, I don’t think he’ll miss a beat.”

On his expectations for the offense:
“My expectation is to win. We don’t go into a season never not expecting to go to playoffs. That’s why we came here; we want a chance to compete every year. It’s been just as disappointing for us as anyone else that we haven’t been able to. We’ve started off good and we haven’t really been able to recover from that adversity once that Week 5 hits. Whatever it is, whether it’s injuries or just not playing well, whatever it is, we haven’t been able to recover and I feel confident that we can do it. I believe in our guys. I know our guys believe in ourselves and we expect to come in and win. Anything short of that and we’re as coaches disappointed.”

On Robert Griffin III’s to-do list:
“Mainly technique, just getting out there and doing it. I don’t care if people are with him. I don’t care if he’s by himself. I don’t care if he’s throwing to his fiancée. It’s just reps. We can sit in media rooms and talk all day; you don’t have to be a genius to learn it all. If you just work at it, which he no doubt works at it, you’ll get it from a mental standpoint. It’s not about just understanding it, it’s repping it. You can’t get enough of those reps. That’s why rookie quarterbacks have usually tended to struggle. You have to learn to experience them. You’re not going to always get that experience in practice. The more situations we can put him in when we’re not around, that he can visualize stuff and put himself in it, it puts him ahead of the curve.”

On tempering Robert Griffin III’s excitement:
“I don’t take any of that away. I think that’s one of the main qualities a quarterback needs to succeed in this league. When you look at all of those top guys, the one thing that they have in common, they’re determined, type-A personalities who are obsessed with getting it right. You don’t have to constantly get them to come in and say 'Hey, work on this’ and they’re like 'Oh alright, I’ll do it.’ He’s not doing stuff to make me happy. He’s doing this because it’s as important for him as it is for us. He wants it just as much as anyone else in this room does. He’s made of the right stuff. Football is what drives him. When you’ve got that type of a guy, you don’t have to push him on anything. You let him be himself and you help give him information to make him better.”

On working with Robert Griffin III after the past two seasons:
“I’ve enjoyed working with our guys. It’s a different challenge every year. Obviously, we trade and get the second pick of the draft and you get a guy this talented that I don’t think anyone on this staff has been around someone this talented, yeah it pumps you up. It’s exciting. It pumps all the players up you know everyone feels excited, but it is a lot of work too. You’re just excited to get at it and I wish there weren’t as many rules in the offseason as we’ve had this year. I wish I could meet with him every day. I wish I could meet with him instead of going on vacation right here but I’m not totally allowed to, so you know that stuff’s a little frustrating because you know how much you’ve got to do and you can’t always do it. What makes you feel comfortable, is what I’ve been saying, when you’ve got a guy who even though you’re not there, you still know he’s stressed about the same things I am. He’s going to make sure that he is working. He is doing stuff and it makes you feel a little bit better.”

On Josh Morgan:
“Josh is the same thing. First thing we always look at is just the skill standpoint. Josh doesn’t have the numbers and other stuff that other guys have had, but I think he would have last year if he didn’t get hurt. If you watch Josh in those games and stuff, he can naturally get off bump. He’s got great hands. He’s a physical guy who runs through every ball. He’s very good after the catch. He’s fearless out there. He’ll put his face in people in the running game. He comes off the ball, doesn’t loaf. He does everything you ask for for a big time receiver. With him getting that injury, it set him back. He hasn’t been full go in OTA’s like Pierre has and everyone else, so we haven’t seen a ton of him out there. He’s been trying to go and push through it and when we have, we see the talent that we’ve got. He’s got to get healthy so he can get more comfortable with his reps, get him more comfortable with what he’s doing out there.”

On Josh Morgan or Leonard Hankerson playing more in the slot:
“It’s hard, because actually to me, it’s the first time we’ve got a few guys who are capable of that. Josh [Morgan] and Hank [Leonard Hankerson] are very capable of that. Santana Moss, I see as one of the premier guys in the NFL at that position. So we have some depth there. We have guys who I don’t think we miss a beat, whoever’s in there. It could be play dependent, it could be just because of injuries, but it’s the first time I see a few guys who can do it, not just Santana [Moss]. All three of those guys are all fast enough to go outside also. So when you have a situation like that, I don’t really have anything penciled in my mind. Especially this time of the year, you like to let them all work it and usually when you’ve got guys who are all good, it plays itself out.”

On Trent Williams:
“I expect real big things from Trent [Williams]. You know Trent is one of the most talented players I’ve ever been around; he’s one of the most talented tackles in this league. When you are that talented, he can get away with a lot of stuff. What’s been so good with Trent this year, just like with Santana and stuff, it’s been our first offseason really with Trent and to really isolate on Trent and him to watch all the tape with himself from all last year with the coaches and to really go on his technique. If Trent is on his technique, he’s going to get bored because he’s going to be able to just block people. You know Trent can do it all. He’s got to really work on that technique and be consistent, because as an offensive lineman it’s hard because you can dominate a guy for 55 plays out of 60 but you have five bad plays and the guy you’re going against is going to break the sack record in the NFL. So it’s not about killing a guy every play. When that game is said and done, how many minus [plays]did you have, how many quarterback hits did you have, how did you affect the game? And I think if Trent can be good at his technique, he can be a premier guy in this league. We need him to be.”

On Trent Williams and Fred Davis:
“Knowing both of those guys, personally they’re two guys, just as men, that I have a lot of confidence in. I think both of those guys, they’re very smart guys. They know what’s going on. They made very stupid decisions but they are intelligent enough to realize they can’t make that wrong decision again. I trust both of those guys to make the right decision. They’re out here doing everything they can. They’ve been very good leaders on our offense. They work as hard as anyone. I have a lot of confidence in them to make the right decision.”

Defensive Backs Coach Raheem Morris

On the progress of the secondary:
“It’s real early. You’ve got all these guys coming together. [We’ve] got a bunch of new guys. The guys are out there playing well, playing together. Communication is key right now [in] this part of the season. Nobody wants to go out there and do anything foolish. We know we’re in shorts. We’re in our underwear right now. We haven’t really had an opportunity and go out there and do anything that what we want to do. Just getting the timing, the communication, all those things you’re very pleased with. Guys have done a great job just being able to communicate, speaking our language like we like to call it and having the ability to go out and perform well and perform fast.”

On free agent defensive backs Brandon Meriweather, Tanard Jackson and Madieu Williams:
“They’ve done a nice job coming in here. [Brandon] Meriweather first, he’s done a nice job of stepping into that role of strong safety and really getting a lot of help from those other guys that have been here. [DeJon] Gomes has a lot of experience playing in the system last year. Reed [Doughty] has done a nice job of talking to those guys and communicating and really formulating something that they are going to be special and I really like how that whole secondary is coming together. With [Tanard] Jackson being the new guy in, kind of coming in late, coming off the surgery, the offseason surgery that he had from Tampa, he’s done a nice job of fitting into the group. And hopefully he can find a way onto the field and be productive for us and do some things as well. Madieu [Williams] has done a great job coming in here and having the ability to go through phase one, phase two and now getting to this last part of minicamp. I’ve been really proud of what those guys have been able to do on the field, picking up the defense and learning everything they need to learn in order to get what we want to get accomplished.”

On if Jackson’s maturity has improved:
“It’s always hard to say. You’ve got to build that thing through trust. He’s got another opportunity here, so it’s going to be his opportunity to lose or his opportunity to win. Right now, he’s done a good job showing up and hopefully he can continue to do those things and we’ll have to see where that goes.”

On if Jackson can compete to be a starter:
“Everybody can compete for a starting job. I’m in the business of giving guys an opportunity who go out and work hard and play well. If you come out here and play well and do a nice job in the preseason, do a nice job throughout the process, I’m certainly one of those guys who’s going to be in Coach [Mike] Shanahan’s office and Coach [Jim] Haslett’s office to plead the case who I believe needs to start. Then, we’ll go out there and play who we need to play and get wins.”

On if Jackson has to catch up because he missed a lot of the offseason with an injury:
“It’s fair to say that he does and that goes for everybody. You don’t jump into a system as complex as Haslett’s and pick it up right away, even for a guy like Meriweather and Madieu that have been in different systems, coming from different places and they have some familiarity with it. At the same time, they’ve still got to go out there and do it and play it and get some live action.”

On cornerbacks DeAngelo Hall and Josh Wilson learning new roles:
“Those two guys, being able to stimulate those two guys this offseason, giving those guys something new to learn, something new to do… Putting DeAngelo in there stimulates him a little bit. You go out there, you show those guys some tapes of some people out there doing it, some people that you’re familiar with - Ronde Barber, Charles Woodson, some of the plays they made going inside. It fires them up. But having the ability to teach both of those guys that you can go into a game plan and really get detail specific of what you want to cover who and you want to matchup with who and you don’t worry about it, you don’t blink… With the ability to learn those assignments, you can rotate those guys in at safety. You can take those guys all over the field. Really, we all have got to be interchangeable parts. I think that creates the complexity as well as the detail that you want in the defense in order to get what you want to get accomplished on defense.”

On what he learned from his experience with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and if he wanted to take time off:
“Don’t want to do years off. Don’t want to do years off in coaching. Years off in coaching is bad ball. I enjoy what I do way too much, having that ability to come out here and teach younger guys and teach guys to come together as a unit. Teach guys to be disciplined, teach guys to go out there and work in a cohesive unit in order to get goals accomplished is what we do as coaches. So I didn’t even hesitate or blink on a year off. That wasn’t even a part of the equation.”

On if it was tough going from being a head coach to being a position coach:
“No, that’s for guys with egos, man. Coaching is coaching. There’s 32 people that do what I do in the world. That’s it. Only 32 of us whether you’re a head coach, whether you’re a position coach, whether you’re a position coach assistant, whether you’re quality control. There are 32 men that are the very best at their job. Period.”

On being vocal on the practice field:
“We enjoy ourselves. I’m fortunate enough to be in an environment with Coach Shanahan that he allows me to be myself and he allows himself to be fun as well. We’ve got a great young offensive staff that goes out there and they compete. We’ve got great young players out there on the offensive side of the ball that really want to compete. To create that competitive environment, it’s like going out and playing a pick-up basketball game sometimes. In fact, you get a chance to talk a little trash to each other and go out there and really have fun while you get your job done. It keeps people alive. It keeps people coming back to work. These guys have bought right in, it’s been a lot of fun.”

On his relationship with offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan and getting under his skin with trash talk:
“That’s great. I’m glad he told you guys that. We’re going to continue to pump up the juice in training camp. But he’s doing a great job. It motivates everybody to be better. Yesterday, he came out and hit a couple of big plays on us. I know that made his day. Looking at it from totality, it was great to see Robert [Griffin III] get some completions. It was great to see Robert have some success. It was great to see [Kirk] Cousins go out there and really perform. It was great to see all those young quarterbacks go out and do some really great things because schematically, call-wise, you’re starting to see understanding of people and everything coming together. It’s been a really good experience for me.”

On his transition back to being a position coach:
“I learned so much from Tampa and not only just being a head coach, I’m talking about going all the way back to quality control days from guys like Monte Kiffin. And being fortunate enough to build my way up the ladder, being around guys like Mike Tomlin and being around guys like Rod Marinelli who’s done all the things that you’ve done as far as becoming a head coach - either failing at becoming a head coach or becoming a great head coach, whatever the case may be. Really, it’s about the experience you’ve gained from those guys and learning that stuff. Being around the Glazers and that type of ownership group [in Tampa Bay] and now coming here and being around our ownership group and all the things that we can do, it’s just been a great experience for me at a very young age. I’m 35 years young. It’s been a nice ride. It’s been fun and it’s helped me a lot going through the whole transition of seeing everything and seeing the big picture. And not just being selfish about the secondary and being able to see guys on offense have some success in situations that they should and in situations that they overachieved.”

On having a rookie quarterback (Josh Freeman) in Tampa Bay and providing advice to the offensive staff in Washington:
“I don’t know if I would say I am going to give them any input, but I’m always going to give them my opinion. I’m a very opinionated person. I want to be one of those guys that can get it out and say it to you and let you take it in and do what you think you need to do to get guys ready. So I just gave them my experience with [Josh Freeman]. You wanted to try and put Freeman in those situations where he’s going to have success and do some positive things to build that confidence, and at some point, give him the competitive environment like we’ve been able to give him in the minicamp with the situational football that coach provides us with. And then, ultimately, get him into the games into the preseason and going into the season and having success. The young man [Griffin III] has high expectations, even higher than what Freeman had, being the No. 2 pick overall. It’s been a great transition for him. He’s done a great job really falling into his role and all of these guys behind him have done a great job of really supporting him and getting him through the process. It’s just great to see, not from the outside looking in, but from a different perspective of being a positional coach that doesn’t have to try protect everybody out there all the time.”

On how the 3-4 front can help the secondary:
“[It] really fires me up. You just talk about some of the run fits and how good we’ve been versus the run. You know, Washington, with those big guys up front. I remember Doug Worthington was in Tampa. He was the biggest guy I had ever seen coming out the building. Now, here in Washington, he’s one of the smaller guys. You’ve got big guys up front – the [Stephen] Bowens, the [Barry] Cofields, the [Adam] Carrikers and the [Jarvis] Jenkinss. And you look at those big mammoths upfront that we’ve got. And we’ve got backers that are the size of our defensive ends. It’s just a beautiful thing to watch. To watch the leadership come from a guy like London Fletcher that’s something I haven’t been around since Derrick Brooks and that type of a leader, not even Barrett Ruud and those type of guys that really come to work and just lead your defense and get you going in the right direction no matter what the call, no matter what the play, no matter what the situation. It’s been great to be around.”

On if the 3-4 scheme does anything to change what he wants to do:
“Football for me is football. Coverages are coverages. You don’t really change that much. It’s more about what’s going on with the run front. It’s more about what’s going on with some of the coverages that we do, some of the matchup things that I’ve always been nosey and intrigued about anyways. So we’ve done a little bit, dibbling and dabbling with the 4-3 system as well. [Haslett] has always been a guy that I looked at and known a lot about his system because of his time in New Orleans. I got a chance to see him run that through a 4-3 perspective. And now to get here and really figure out what he does as a player and what he did as a long-time positional coach as well as a coordinator in this league has been awesome for me. Getting into his head and him getting into my head and us getting on the same page and really getting ready for the season, it has been awesome.”

On the defense’s weaknesses from 2011 and forming an identity:
“There’s always going to be a weakness every year. There’s always something negative you can find as a coach. We go back, we look at it, we evaluate it and we come back and we’re going to play better. But the ability to come here and you have that chance to help the secondary, our job is to be the very best. That’s our goal at all times, whatever the very best is. Our means of doing that is to force our will on our opponent. It doesn’t really matter about the scheme. It’s more about the culture that you provide in your room, the attitude that those guys have to be able to go and play with. That’s what they’ll do the best. That’s what they’ll do better. And I can hopefully get that done along with all the other coaches on the staff, it will hopefully be a pretty good dynamic for us.”

On undrafted cornerback Chase Minnifield:
“I’m ecstatic he did not run as well in his 40-time to make him a free agent to be able to come to Washington. He’s done a nice job. I’m very happy and very pleased with that room – from guys like [Richard] Crawford, guys like [Jordan] Bernstine coming in here from Iowa. Those young bunch of guys they are hungry. They are really out there competing every single day and I would be remiss to not tell you guys how well they’re doing picking up everything and just being detailed and really being professionals. Those guys leave here later than coaches sometimes. Those rookies have got those rules they can stay a little bit longer, watch a little bit more tape and, really, it’s almost a pain in the neck trying to get rid of them because they want to be around and just learn.”

On how important it is for his career to come to Washington and learn the 3-4 defense:
“For me, I never looked at it that way. I’m the very best and I was the best last year when I got fired. And I’m going to continue to feel that way. We’ll figure all the rest of that stuff out. Right now, I want to help the Washington Redskins win football games. I’m not really concerned about my career, never have been. It’s going in a great direction, don’t get me wrong. But I don’t even think that way.”

On learning the new front:
“Oh, it’s awesome. Any time you’re learning in this business, that’s ultimately the goal and that’s what we’ve been doing, and that’s what we have the opportunity to do – share knowledge. Any time you get the chance to be around a guy like [Bob] Slowik, who has been to so many different places and done so many different things, you get a chance to be around a guy like Jacob Burney and learn some stuff from him from upfront and see how he teaches in his techniques… I was fortunate enough to be around a guy like Rod Marinelli, one of the best defensive line coaches I’ve ever been around. Now, I’m around a guy like Jacob Burney. I’m extremely fortunate to be around that type of knowledge and not even to mention some of our offensive staff that I feel like are doing a great job.”

On cornerback DeAngelo Hall:
“He’s done a nice job at responding. Everybody knows all of his troubles in the past. He’s had the ability to come here and wipe that stuff away and go out there this year and really just play football. [He’ll] go out there and play some nickel. You’ve got a new interest and dynamic for himself inside. He’ll have some new interests and dynamics for himself outside. He’s completely bought into the things that we want to do. If he keeps going in the right direction, he’ll be taking my family to Hawaii.”

On the type of skill set it will take Hall to transition to playing inside at cornerback:
“Toughness. That’s ultimately what he [Hall] is. Everybody knows the mistakes. That’s the easy part to find. Joe Blow the fan can find that one. But when you go out and you work at it and you look for a guy that’s willing to put his face in a guy like [Brandon] Jacobs or to be able to get into the mesh with the big boys, that’s what you ultimately look for is the toughness. And then his quickness and instincts are phenomenal and that will do something else to help him go out there and play the game very well and very fast as well.”

Defensive Coordinator Jim Haslett

On how the secondary is coming together:
“It’s going to be a process, but I’m excited about it. I think we’ve had a good offseason. I like the additions, the guys we added to the back end. I thought we ranked well in pass defense last year and I think we can get better with some of the additions we added.”

On defensive backs coach Raheem Morris:
“Well, it’s been good because you know he’s very intelligent. The back end’s a little bit different than the front. We’re running a totally different front than he’s ever run, which I think he’s a little excited about. The run fits are totally different for him, from the standpoint where the safeties fit, the corners fit and everything. The pass game is just a learning process. You know, it’s an ongoing thing right now. We talk every day about different techniques, different styles and he played a totally different style than what we’re playing in. You know, it’s been great so far. He’s fun to be around and he’s smart and he’s got a little enthusiasm. He likes the scheme, he sells it, and he sells it to the players. So it’s been good.”

On teaching the 3-4 scheme to Raheem Morris:
“Well, in the beginning, we spent a lot of time together. And even moving Coach [Bob] Slowik down to the linebackers spot, you know, which he hasn’t done in a little while, the three of us together have spent a lot of time this offseason looking at tape, talking about it, talking about scheme and techniques. We’ve come up with a couple ideas different than we’ve had. I think it will help us a little bit. And Jacob [Burney] has had the last five months off [laughter].”

On how different the new safeties are:
“I think Brandon [Meriweather] is really athletic and really instinctive. He’s got a great nose for the ball. He’s most like some of the guys I’ve coached in the past or we watch on film that emulate the scheme we are trying to play. So I think he’s got great ball skills. I mean, you can see why he was in the Pro Bowl. Madieu [Williams] is really, really smart. He kind of runs the show back there. I think he’s on top of it. He’s kind of like having a coach on the field. He’s also got good ball skills. He can run well. T-Jack [Tanard Jackson] really is athletic. He’s like having a corner back there. He can cover a lot of ground. You know, we just haven’t had him long because of the injury. He had the knee and the shoulder, so he’s probably the furthest behind all of them right now. And I think DJ [DeJon Gomes], I know he’s not an addition, but I think he’s really, for a guy that we stuck in there at the end of the year, he’s really grown up and we’re excited about him. And obviously Reed [Doughty] is steady-eddy, he’s done a great job. But I think it’s great competition. I think you need a bunch of safeties and were going to try to find ways to get them all on the field. We played DJ some at dime yesterday. I think you can do a lot of different thing with the group.”

On being able to have safeties during the offseason unlike last offseason:
“Well, it’s a good combination, because like I said, Madieu [Williams] and Brandon [Meriweather], they’re very good communicators. They talk a lot with D [DeAngelo Hall]. And Cedric [Griffin] is kind of learning too. You know, you’ve got a corner out there running what were doing. But I’ve liked the interaction they’ve had this offseason. And getting up on the speed and the scheme. I don’t think we are where we want to be at yet, but I think we’ve had a good three months and I think it’s been excellent.”

On moving DeAngelo Hall to the nickel spot:
“Well, we’re trying him. Josh [Wilson] has played there some this offseason. We played the two young guys; Rich Crawford and Chase Minnifield. I’ve been impressed with all four of the guys. I like the guys we added through the draft and I’m really impressed with Chase [Minnifield]. I think they’re all great additions. Brandyn [Thompson] has really stepped up. So I like the competition that you have for playing time from all the corners and the safeties. This is the first time you’re gonna have some hard decisions to make on who you’re going to keep and who is not going to make it.”

On DeAngelo Hall’s skills:
“Well, for one, he’s got the best skills I’ve probably ever seen. That’s the big thing. I think it’s something new for him so he’s kind of energized. He really likes it. He’s the kind of guy that can go in there and get sacks. That position should make a lot of plays. When you look at the Charles Woodsons, the guys that play in that scheme, you know you get four or five sacks every year. You get four or five interceptions. You get big plays. And hopefully we can get that out of him.”

On Jarvis Jenkins’ healing:
“I thought he struggled early. You know, just not doing anything for such a long period and we thought last week he started getting his feet back underneath him and his legs, where he is starting to look like himself. And he feels comfortable about what he’s doing. I think the next step for him is probably going to be putting the pads on. He’ll probably take a little step backwards again for not having them on for a whole year. You know, when you put them on for the first time and your neck hurts so bad for a week, you forget what they’re like. And I think by the time we get rolling and the season starts, I think he’ll be up to speed with everything. Obviously he’s got great athleticism. You can see that all the time”

On whether Jarvis Jenkins will play on the left or right side:
“He can play both sides. I think he’s more of a right side guy. He can play on the left. You know, he’s going to be a nickel guy for us too. We think he’s got good speed and good pass rush. We’ll do a number of different things with those guys.”

On how the defense should be this year and how it will support Robert Griffin III:
“I hope we can be the main cog that we can be like what Cincinnati did with their young quarterback. They played great defense. Hopefully we can be in that same area. I think we have the type of players that we should be able to step up and do that this year. Obviously with the addition of him [Robert Griffin III] and the scheme, I think our offensive scheme is about as good as it can get in the league. It’s hard to prepare for. I’m excited about the upcoming season”

On what has impressed him about Robert Griffin III:
“You see he’s got great talent. You see the speed, the arm strength. I think his intelligence, just watching his poise for a young guy [is impressive]. I think the world of him. Just watching him and just spending a little bit of time with him, I think he’s way ahead of his time for a young kid, a young guy that’s coming into the league. And I think he’s done a great job embracing the team. You know for a young guy to come in and do that and have everyone rally around you, that’s hard to do and I think he’s done a nice job of it.”

On Chase Minnifield:
“I like that he’s just a football player. You can tell that he grew up with his dad and that he’s got ball skills. He’s got football intelligence. He’s got awareness. He’s smart. He can play a lot of different positions. The only knock on him he has is coming out is he had the bad knee and he ran and should have never ran the 40. He had a bad 40 time and he became a free agent. We saw him on film and we thought he would be a high draft pick, a third-round draft pick, that can help somebody so we went after him as a free agent. Thank God we got him. I love the kid. Hopefully, like I said there is some great competition, and you know, you can only keep five or six corners in and hopefully he keeps progressing the way he’s doing because I like the kid.”

On making sure London Fletcher re-signed:
“I think that was evident by everyone in this whole town that we wanted to have London Fletcher back. He runs the show. He runs this defense. He may be the best football player I’ve been around since I’ve been doing this. I got a lot of admiration for the guy. He runs the show for us out there. He’s smart. He has everything you want in a football player.”

On Raheem Morris being loud:
“I told him yesterday to get the hell away from me because he was yelling at Kyle [Shanahan] so I couldn’t pay attention at practice [laughter]. I looked over and it was the first time he had been quiet in about an hour. He enjoys being out there. He enjoys football. We’ve got a guy with enthusiasm and so you’ve got to enjoy that.”


I took the red pill
BGO Ownership Group
Dec 12, 2009
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Orlando, FL

Kent State

Good to hear Tana dropped some weight, he should get some speed back. While I understand bulking up for middle routes he was starting to get LL syndrome it appeared.


The Owner's Favorite
Jun 30, 2009
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Raleigh, NC


Reading and then re-reading this, I'm beginning to wonder about Kyle.

"So you don’t want to just limit him to too much stuff because then you don’t really know what he’s capable of."

This sentence frankly confused me-maybe it was the grammar, maybe it's just a reflection of how Kyle talks but it seems to lack clarity-you don't want to just limit him to too much stuff? O.K., Kyle just what the hell are you saying here? You don't want to limit him to too much-how does one limit somebody to "too much?" Maybe I'm missing something, I dunno.

Oh, and speaking of "stuff".

"I want him to relax and stuff"

"I think the biggest challenge is having to follow rules and stuff."

Could you be a bit more specific about this "stuff" you're referring to, Kyle? I would be really interested in knowing what else you would add to "following rules" that would be challenges to RG3. Given what we've seen so far RG3 seems to be one of the lowest risk candidates the Redskins have when it came to being willing to "follow rules." The same applies to the relaxation thing, what else specifically would you like to see RG3 do during this break?

Some of this comes across like a canned memorized speech an OC is trained to use when responding to questions rather than usable insights for we fans.

Maybe I'm being too picky and/or displaying my own "I need information!" temperament but I found some of his vagueness unsatisfying.
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Reading and then re-reading this, I'm beginning to wonder about Kyle.

"So you don’t want to just limit him to too much stuff because then you don’t really know what he’s capable of."

This sentence frankly confused me-maybe it was the grammar, maybe it's just a reflection of how Kyle talks but it seems to lack clarity-you don't want to just limit him to too much stuff? O.K., Kyle just what the hell are you saying here? You don't want to limit him to too much-how does one limit somebody to "too much?" Maybe I'm missing something, I dunno.

Oh, and speaking of "stuff".

"I want him to relax and stuff"

"I think the biggest challenge is having to follow rules and stuff."

Could you be a bit more specific about this "stuff" you're referring to, Kyle? I would be really interested in knowing what else you would add to "following rules" that would be challenges to RG3. Given what we've seen so far RG3 seems to be one of the lowest risk candidates the Redskins have when it came to being willing to "follow rules." The same applies to the relaxation thing, what else specifically would you like to see RG3 do during this break?

Some of this comes across like a canned memorized speech an OC is trained to use when responding to questions rather than usable insights for we fans.

Maybe I'm being too picky and/or displaying my own "I need information!" temperament but I found some of his vagueness unsatisfying.
yea....I was wondering abt the language also - kinda sloppy if you ask me. but you know what...as much as I enjoy reading this...errrr....stuff.......its all
bent to keep everyone happy. early in the process...no need for more detailed assessment at this point. once training camp starts...so will the content

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