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Skins Quotes 6/6/13: Shanahan/RG3

McKissic for the win

Boone

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June 6, 2013
Redskins Park


Executive Vice President/Head Coach Mike Shanahan

On quarterback Robert Griffin III setting the first day of training camp as his target for returning:
“Well, you always want somebody to have goals, that’s for sure. You want him to come back as soon as he is ready to go, but the doctors have got to OK him. From the beginning they have talked about the recovery time being anywhere from seven months to nine months. I think August 9 is seven months, and so we will just have to wait and see.”

On tight end Fred Davis:
“Any time you have an Achilles, it’s some tough recovery time. He has worked very hard to get himself where he is at, but I except Fred back full speed ready to go at camp.”

On if he will ease Griffin III in during his return or let him go full speed:
“I am going to sit back and talk to the doctors and see what they say, how they feel and kind of go from there.”

On fullback Eric Kettani being promoted to Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy:
“It is quite unusual to have somebody do what he has done. Not only is he a good football player, but you can tell that he has been quite busy over the last few years. He has been out of college for a number of years. To have that type of drive, still what he does for the service and still what he does on the football field, it keeps him pretty busy. He is a class young man and he has got a chance to compete for a position on our football team.”

On what it was like to be a part of Kettani’s pinning ceremony on Monday:
“It was great. I have never been a part of a ceremony like that. I am very proud of him. He is a class young man and he represents our country the right way.”

On when cornerback and safety relationships develop and how quickly they are formed:
“I think it all depends on how good the players are. The better players you’ve got, the quicker that chemistry comes together. I thought when Brandon played last year – Brandon Meriweather – he played exceptionally well. Tanard Jackson, when he played with his limited experience, looked good when he was out there. I thought Reed [Doughty] did a fantastic job last year coming in and playing the role that he did, and you can see him play at a very high level besides special teams; he always plays special teams well. We’re looking for some guys to compete. I think when you take a look at Phillip Thomas, you take a look at Bacarri Rambo, you’re talking about some depth along with some good players as well. We’re going to let this thing play out, let these guys compete and the best players will play.”

On the return of running back Roy Helu, Jr.:
“Helu brings a lot to the table. I’m glad he’s feeling good. He has practiced the last couple of days. He has looked good in practice. He talked to Dr. Anderson a couple days ago. He OK’d him, and it’s fun to have him out there. Hopefully he keeps on getting better and better, but anytime you have a guy that weighs 225 pounds, he under that 4.5 40, has receiving skills and the opportunity to make a big play… So it’s good to have him back and a chance to compete.”

On cornerback Chase Minnifield:
“We kept him out today. He didn’t ask to be out, but we practiced him yesterday. Anytime a guy comes off a knee injury, we like him to practice when he is OK, but we don’t want to overdo it, especially when you’ve got a month and a half of recovery time. So, he’s going to practice next week on Tuesday and we’ll probably give him Wednesday off as well.”

On the impact wide receiver Joshua Morgan’s injuries had on his performance:
“Well Josh, the last two days, has had two great practices and I see him getting better every day. He is a heck of an athlete. He can make the big play and he is exceptionally tough. In the running game last year, you could tell that he wasn’t comfortable with his ankle and the screws, but he played and he played hurt, but he did an unbelievable job just being able to go out there and compete, especially with some of the setbacks he had with those screws in there. So, I expect him to get better and better.”

On if the screws in Morgan’s ankle limiting his ability to get yards after the catch:
“Any time you have screws in your ankle and it is bothering you out of cuts, it is going to bother your running with the ball in your hands. But he’s over that right now and hopefully doesn’t have any setbacks like he did last year.”

On linebacker London Fletcher’s interception at the end of practice and the excitement it generated:
“Anytime you’ve been practicing – for two weeks and it’s more of a conditioning [time], and the next three weeks the offense and defense is on the field, and this is the third week of a four-week time set – you get these guys very competitive. All the sudden the offense will have a few good plays, and give the defense a little bit of static and the same thing works the other way. So when London intercepted that ball in that four-minute period, he was excited for the defense and rightfully so. I like guys excited, especially when you’re 38 years old, or whatever he is right now.”

On how different special teams philosophies are across the NFL:
“There’s a lot of different ways to do things on special teams. It could be punt protections. It could be coverage. Everybody’s got a little bit different angle, but the one thing you want to do is make sure you’re sound.”

On his own special team philosophy fitting with Special Teams Coordinator Keith Burns:
“First of all, when you interview somebody, you take at a look at all the different areas that he’s coached, and he’s coached all different areas on special teams and he teaches that to you. He presents it the way he’s going to present it to the players. And then you’ve got to get players to play hard. You’ve got to motivate people and you’ve got to feel good about the people that are on your football team. When Keith was with me, he was just like Lorenzo Alexander. He was a great special teams player. He led by example; first guy there, last guy to leave. He’ll do the same thing as a coach.”

On linebacker Brian Orakpo’s recovery:
“I walked over to him yesterday and I said, 'Hey, I know what it’s like to be out. When you’re out, sometimes you do miss the game, don’t you?’ He said, 'Yeah, you really do. You realize how much you enjoy playing once you’re away from it.’ And I said, 'I just love the way you’re playing. I love your energy, your attitude. You can tell that he’s giving it everything he has and he’s really practicing at a very high level.”

On the defense:
“I think anytime you’re with the system for three full years, starting on the fourth year, you’re able to take a look at last year – the things we did well, the things we did poorly. If it’s putting players in better position for pass rush, if you’re trying to get better with one defensive scheme compared to the other – what I mean by that is one coverage compared to another coverage – you feel a lot more confident in what you’re doing. And we have a lot more depth than what we’ve had, especially with this system that we have right now. So, full speed ahead and [I’m] looking forward to Richmond.”

On pressure to handle Griffin III’s return from injury:
“I’ll do the same thing I do during the season, the same thing I’ve been doing for 40 years of coaching. I ask the doctors. They’re the best at what they do and they’re going to tell me if he’s ready to go and when he’s ready to go. And we’ll get a chance to evaluate him once they do clear him. But that’s what they do for a living. They take a look at the ACL, the LCL. They’re going to look at it inside and out. They’ll test his strength. They’ll watch his agility drills and tell me where he’s at. These guys know what they’re doing and when the doctors say that he’s OK, then we’ll evaluate him on a day-to-day basis and I’ll try to make a decision if he can do everything full-speed, just like he did last year.”

On running back Jawan Jamison:
“Well, if you’d asked me what Alfred Morris showed me last year, I told you with the running backs and the safeties, a lot of times it’s hard to tell until you get into that first game or second game. [It’s a] very tough position to evaluate until you put the pads on. And he’s going to get his opportunity in a short time to show us what he can do, but right now he’s just trying to learn the system, the blocking scheme, the combinations so that when he does play in a game, he doesn’t have to think, he can react.”

On the possibility of moving an NFL team in London:
“I know it’s pretty hard to travel. I’m sure if they did have a team there, it would be five home, five away. It’d be unique for sure. I’m not exactly sure how they would do it. I’m sure there’s a lot things involved, but it would be interesting if they’d do something like that… I think we all know if they did do it, we know what they’re doing it for. I think it’s always tough when you’re traveling that far away. Especially, for us it would be a little bit easier going there, but if you’re on the West Coast, it’d be a little bit tougher. You’re talking about an eight-hour, nine-hour flight and you’re playing the next week. Sounds pretty tough to me.”

On veterans like Fletcher attending voluntary practices:
“Well, that’s why London is, you know, playing at 38 years old because that’s a priority for him. Staying in great shape, understanding the defense inside and out, leading by example. That’s why you want guys like that on your football team. If they don’t do that in the offseason, that means they’re probably going downhill very quickly. The great ones I’ve been around, Jerry Rice was there at 40 years old and he was the first guy there and last guy to leave, one of the reasons why he played so long.”

On if cornerback Jordan Pugh still has an ear infection:
“Yeah, they won’t let him travel. That’s the reason why he’s not here.”

On tight end Deangelo Peterson:
“He had a little break in his bone yesterday in his foot. Not sure how long it is going to be right now. There’s some swelling and I can tell you more probably the next couple of days. Right foot, I think it was the fifth metatarsal.”

On safety Reed Doughty:
“I think anytime you get a guy like Reed, who came in here as a backup player and played exceptionally well on special teams… He should not be as good as he is on special teams but he’s got the desire, he’s got the work ethic, and he will find a way to make plays. Same thing on defense. When his opportunity came this year to play the safety position, he played at a very high level, especially when you go back at the end of the season and you really study him. So he’s a guy I have the utmost respect for because he gives you everything that he has on every play and he’s trying to teach younger players to be as good as they can play. So he’s a very unselfish guy. Guys like that give you the chance to win.”

On if Doughty has a chance of being named as the special teams captain:
“Oh, Reed’s a guy that I considered one of the captains last year with the way he played. But we have a number of guys that have that ability. Niles Paul has played at a very high level. We’ve got guys that have some speed, have some athletic ability. We’ve got some great competition and that’s what the preseason is all about. You get a chance to evaluate these guys.”

On his respect for Doughty:
“Well, just as a person. If you’re ever around the guy and how he handles himself both on and off the football field, how he prepares, how he lives his life, you know that you’ve got the real deal, a guy that your very proud to have in your organization.”

On the second year of Niles Paul’s transition to tight end:
“Well, that’s what we’re practicing for, to find out where he’s at. But not too often do you have a tight end that can run under a 4.5 40, that’s exceptionally strong, that can play on special teams very well, can line up in any position. He can be in the backfield. He can be at the line of scrimmage. He’ll just keep on getting better and better with time. That’s what you kind of look for when a guy makes that transition from the wide receiver to tight end position, it doesn’t happen overnight, but he has really done a good job of adjusting both mentally and physically, and hopefully it will pay off this season.”

On the versatility of tight ends Jordan Reed and Niles Paul:
“Well, what you want is you want people that can make plays, and the more speed you have, the more ability you have to make big plays, but you still have to be able to block. So we have the flexibility right now with five of our tight ends to do a lot of different things. So the addition of Fred coming back and a guy like Jordan hopefully coming back and playing at a very high level with a guy like Logan Paulsen, you take a look at Logan and he’s just been so consistent with the running game and the passing game, and so you just hope that you’re injury free and ready to compete.”

On when Davis will return to practice:
“He might be able to go next week but I’m going to keep him away even if he wants to go. I like what I see on a day-to-day basis. You can see the explosion. I just don’t want him to push against anybody right now. I just don’t want to take the chance when he has an extra month and a half recovery time. So we won’t push it, but if we were playing next week, I think he might be able to go.”

Quarterback Robert Griffin III

On additions or changes to his regimen since last week:
“Yeah, you know this week was a big week going four straight days on the field. On previous weeks, we’d have a day off. So to go the four straight, throwing every day, planting, cutting, doing the routes with the receivers, all of the guys kind of did a good job balancing the act for the four straight days. I’ve started throwing on the run a lot more, as you guys saw, doing a lot more plant throws out of the play action, the type of throws that we do in our offense. That’s the encouraging part. I’ve also bumped up the long distance running, as you guys saw today, ran a little bit more. That’s all good. I’m feeling more comfortable doing everything. The coaches are saying that I look a lot better. When they do get to sneak a peek in there, they say I look a lot more comfortable throwing the ball. I look relaxed and it shows.”

On there is any soreness in his knee after four straight days of practice:
“No, that was the encouraging part today. You know, of course whenever the media is out here or fans are out here, you get a little extra juice, but I felt good today regardless. That’s what I’m excited about. To have those four straight days, to still feel good after those four days with no soreness is a good thing.”

On the next stage of cutting he needs to reach:
“I think the advanced stage of cutting would be running and cutting. What I’ve tried to do and what I’ve tried to do with the other guys [Chris] Thompson, [Jordan] Reed and Fred [Davis] and Pierre [Garçon] – Pierre being the only one with an upper body injury – what we try to do is make sure we can do the football-specific things. So I can do an eight-track, do a nine-track, do a four-track, five-track, plant, get through all my reads, whether it’s a backpedal throw, seven-step drop, five-step drop, whether Fred’s cutting off of his inside foot or his outside foot… All those guys, we try to do that first, and then for me at least, I know I’m the only one of the group that has to go through the advanced running and cutting stage where you run full speed to the right and you cut to the left. That’s the kind of stuff that I have to get done here in the next two months and it will get done. As far as football-specific things as a quarterback, I felt good doing those things.”

On if he had a limp after running:
“[Head Athletic Trainer] Larry [Hess] told me that coming out here. I asked him if he was joking because he does joke like that a lot, saying about me limping or anything like that, but I didn’t feel like I was limping. I wasn’t sore at all. I did think he was joking but he said he was serious and some people were saying that they thought I was limping, but no, I wasn’t.”

On injuries help other players receive reps on the field and what that does for the team’s development:
“I think it builds the depth. It’s what Coach [Mike Shanahan] has been saying the whole offseason that we have a lot of depth on this team. It’s allowed other guys to get reps, like you said, that they wouldn’t normally get. The more you play, the better you’ll get. Whenever you can have those guys that are coming off the sidelines – if someone goes down, then they are ready to go as soon as they step in – I think that helps the team.”

On the depth of the team:
“I think the team has been looking really good. The defense has been flying around. Offense, we have our days where we are tearing it up and then we have our days when we are not tearing it up, but that’s just how it goes with practice. It’s been fun to watch but I’m pretty tired of watching.”

On linebacker Brian Orakpo:
“Rak’s been great. You know it was tough to see him there on the sideline the whole year. I went through that in college. It’s tough to see your team go out there and play without you, and he’s done a good job coming back from his injury 100 percent. He’s been firing off the ball. You can watch the film – I’m sure Coach [Shanahan] won’t let you – but if you watch the film, you’ll see him. He’s explosive, he’s very excited to be back, and it tells every day in practice because he’s out there busting his butt and I think guys get back not for themselves, they come back because they want to help the team. And I think that’s what’s been the whole theme for everybody, myself included, with Pierre, Thompson, Reed, and Fred, all those guys wanting to get back. Even the guys that are out there right now like Tristan Davis, Chris Neild, Chase Minnifield, all those guys worked really hard this offseason to get back, to be able to practice and it’s really good to see everybody back out there.”

On if he has come a long way in his rehab in three weeks:
“Yeah, I mean that’s what you want. Every day you want to feel better, and that’s how it’s been. I feel comfortable. I know the coaches say I look more comfortable, more fluid. Running-wise, they say my stride and my gait look a lot more fluid and that’s positive. That’s what you want. You want to always be positive.”

On if running the first team offense on the first day of training camp is a realistic goal:
“Without a doubt.”

On the differences in wide receiver Joshua Morgan’s movement this offseason:
“Josh has been good, as you guys saw. [He had] a couple of spectacular catches, which he is capable of being. He’s capable of being a beast and that’s what we need him to be. He came, last year he had that rod in his ankle from the injury the year before, so he got that taken out. So he is cutting a lot better. He feels a lot more fluid and he feels good. Just imagine you have a rod in your ankle and you’re playing in 30-degree weather. It is going to be a little sore. So he got that out, he is feeling a lot better and we feel good about him.”

On what makes him say he will be “without a doubt” ready for training camp:
“One, it is a mindset, and then two, it is just how I felt and how it’s progressed. Like you said, over the last three weeks, you know, I’ve had a lot of progress and I feel a lot better. So, if you think – I think training camp’s a month, month-and-a-half away? Two months? – I feel really good about that and the start of the season is even farther than that. I feel good about that and that’s why I say without a doubt.”

On comparisons to Adrian Peterson’s rehab:
“Yeah, I mean, I’m not Adrian, but when it comes to the pressure of coming back from the injury, it’s like the old saying, 'You only feel pressure when you don’t know what you’re doing or you’re not confident in what you’re doing.’ I feel confident in what the coaches are going to do with me, I feel confident in what I’ve been working with, with Larry – Larry Hess in the training room – and those guys. I feel confident in my body and the way it has been responding, so there is no pressure there. It is just a matter if I am ready, I go. If I am not ready, I sit.”

On his biggest frustration during OTAs:
“Watching. I mean, that’s it. I’m getting all the mental reps I can, helping the guys out as much as I can, talking to them about different plays. A year of experience helps you no matter what anybody says. I’ve only played one year, but that year of experience helped me a lot. So to sit here and see it from a different perspective also helps, but that doesn’t mean you have to enjoy sitting there and watching and that is not something I enjoy. So I’m looking forward to getting back out on the field.”

On comments made by Donovan McNabb:
“I mean, it is what it is. Everybody is going to have their own opinion and he is free to have that opinion. So I’ll just leave it at that.”

On if he would be interested into talking with McNabb:
“Yeah, I watched Donovan play when I was younger, so I saw what he went through and the ups and downs and I think it was five NFC Championship games. I know the history, so it’s not something I’d be opposed to, but like I said, right now I’ve got other things to do.”

On running back Roy Helu, Jr. returning to practice:
“Helu looks great. We call him 'Helu J-R’ because he randomly threw that junior on there after someone put a third on their jersey. He’s looked great. Just this morning in practice, in film, Coach gave him a shout out, said he is glad to have him back out there. And we are. He is a guy that can really help us. Him, [Chris] Thompson and all the other guys that are competing for spots right now, they all are really explosive players and he’s got to find out who is going to make it out of the group. But we definitely have a good batch of backs back there for sure.”

On the first day of training camp is the “right” target:
“I think it is the right target if I’m healthy. I’ve talked to Coach. I’ve talked to the doctors. I’ve talked to Larry [Hess]. I’ve talked to everybody that’s close to me. If I am ready to go Week 1, then I play. If I’m not ready to go Week 1, then I can swallow pride and not play. It’s that simple. When I talked to Coach, I told him I’ll be honest with him. If I feel like I’m ready to go and there’s no doubt in my mind that I can play, then I’ll be ready to go. But if there’s an ounce of doubt or a minor setback then I won’t play.”
 

tshile

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biggest takeaway for me on Shanahan's presser:

The reporters have finally stopped asking about Griffin's knee and started asking good questions again.
 

tshile

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I prefer he show great things and then go somewhere else.
:)
 

Boone

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Oh, and Coach Mike "I Ask The Doctor" Shanahan continues to cover his butt.
I think Shanahan deserves a lot of the criticism for keeping RG3 out there while clearly hurt to begin with, but in fairness what do you expect him to say to those kinds of questions?
 

Win4us

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Liked Griff's comment about the D flying around. Man I hope those youngling safeties catch fire early.
 

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