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Skins Quotes 8/3: M. Shanahan


The Commissioner
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BGO Ownership Group
Apr 11, 2009
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Greensboro, NC
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Marine Corps
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August 3, 2013

Executive Vice President/Head Coach Mike Shanahan

On Fan Appreciation Day:
“You can tell the fans are excited. I know the players really appreciate the support and how enthusiastic the fans are. It’s been a great week, a great first week. Any time you have your walkthrough sessions basically sold out, full crowds, you hit practice and I think the players really enjoy it. It was nice to have them close to the field today on both sides of the field. [It’s] something we look forward to.”

On practicing in knee and thigh pads today:
“I don’t even notice it, to be honest with you. Players, we just want to put them in a situation before we play our first game, exactly what the rules are. And most of the guys won’t feel a big difference. I think some of the veteran players who aren’t used to wearing pads at all have a little adjustment to make, but they get used to it pretty quick.”

On the last time he ran a practice with the team in full pads:
“I do it one or two times every year. I did it one time last year before our first game. I’ve done it every year just like today, but since the emphasis is there, people are talking about it a little bit more. It used to be with the knee pads that they wanted knee pads in and they wanted thigh pads in, but you could put a napkin in there and they considered that a pad. Now it’s a little bit more strict, a little bit more stringent, and we’ll see how it’s enforced this year.”

On if he wants a game to 'break up the monotony’ of camp:
“We try to put the team through all situations that they’ll see during a game, as you could see with our practices. Sometimes we’ll have second-and-15 and third down, and you run a normal play, it could be third-and-15, second-and-10. So you try to put the offense behind the 8-ball, or maybe the defense behind the 8-ball and see how they adjust. Same thing with the two-minute [drill]. Today, at midfield, six points behind, we had two timeouts. It was nice to have the officials out there, controlling penalties and the atmosphere. I think a couple of days before we had it on the 20 and the 30 in the two-minutes, all different scenarios. Monday and Tuesday we’ll have it where we’re a couple of points behind, where we put the team through field goal situations and kind of a last second field goal where people are running off the sideline, so that’s what you try to do in preseason so it becomes natural to them and they don’t have to think.”

On fullback Darrel Young sitting out of practice:
“He got his leg hurt. He’s a little bit sore and we gave him a day off. He was still hurt, I could see a little bit out there. He’s so tough he doesn’t want to take any time off, but you could see him limping a little bit. I thought it was in his best interest to stay away today. He doesn’t have to prove to me that he’s tough and he has to play in this type of atmosphere. So we gave him two days of rest instead of one. He’ll probably be able to go full speed on Monday… It’s a little bruise, nothing serious.”

On status of safety Brandon Meriweather:
“I really don’t know. I’ll evaluate him in the drill work. Every once in a while we’ll put him in a couple reps. You take a look at the film, see how he adjusts, and if we don’t think he’s ready to go than we’ll keep on working him through the drill work, running after practice, running after our walkthroughs. And eventually we’ll give him more reps as we feel like he’s ready. What we don’t want to do is push the guy too hard and set him back. That’s one of the reasons why he’s not getting any reps right now. We didn’t think he is ready to take any reps. Same thing with [running back Chris] Thompson. He had a few good days, got a little sore. In my experience with that, if you work a guy that’s been off for a while too quick, all you’re going to do is set him back. So hopefully he’s ready to go Monday. If not, Tuesday or Wednesday.”

On quarterback Robert Griffin III’s performance this week:
“I thought he had a good week. The best part about it, there wasn’t any setback. As you have a plan going into your first week, you’re hoping you can execute that game plan. We were able to do that, and next week we have another game plan for him, and we’ll see if he’s able to go through that.”

On what it will take to prove Griffin III is ready to move forward:
“The only reason you [wouldn’t] keep on going forward with the game plan that you have – because you have a game plan for the first game – [is if] after swelling, there was setback, he doesn’t feel comfortable. The key for us is not to push him too quick. You don’t know how he’s going to react in different drills. But right now, there has been no swelling. He feels very good and that’s one of the reasons he hasn’t had a day off.”

On the plan for Griffin III:
“Our plan goes all the way through Tennessee, then we have another plan after the Tennessee game.”

On his impression of the rookie defensive backs David Amerson, Phillip Thomas and Bacarri Rambo:
“You get a feel very quickly of guys that have a chance to play. You can also figure out fairly quickly the guys that don’t have a chance to play, if it’s going to take them some time. All three guys, you could see, have football instincts. It will be fun to put them in game situations, but they’ve been able to handle everything thus far. It’s kind of a fun process to watch the guys develop – How do they grow? Do they keep maturing? Do they play well in games? So hopefully they do.”

On impression of kickers Kai Forbath and John Potter:
“Yeah, I think they both missed one. Pretty good. Pretty good job by both kickers. We did have a little wind, but I think that was a 63-yarder, but you know, he’s got a strong leg, talking about Potter. Obviously what Kai did last year doesn’t happen with rookies. So for him to take advantage of that opportunity should give him a lot of confidence and should help him with this season, believing in himself, and hopefully doing what he did last year.”

On linebacker Perry Riley:
“Perry Riley is very impressive. I think he gets more comfortable with the defense every year, and we put a lot more pressure on him. But with linebackers, you look for quickness and speed – and he has both of those qualities. He’s got excellent speed, excellent lateral movement and he’s an athlete. So hopefully, he makes a big jump this year, but he’s been playing well for us.”

On what specifically Griffin III did to be considered to have had a good week:
“First thing, you have to make sure his arm is in good shape, and his arm was in excellent shape coming in. He did a good job with his drill work, a good job in his preparation leading into camp, so his arm had the strength that you were looking for. And when you take a look at somebody’s knee – or his ability to run – you really don’t know how that’s going to work out. So when you work with his drill work, you watch a person going through 30 minutes of individual work, he’s in special teams for 20 minutes, all different types of quarterback keeps, just different running drills that he does, and for that knee not to swell up is a big sign. And for him to be able to do 7-on-7 drills is a big sign for me for the first week. So, you’re always hoping that there’s no setback like we talked about. There’s no swelling, so he can keep on doing the things that he’s done.”

On his plans for Griffin III next week:
“Like I said, after the game, we’ve got a little bit different game plan. If there’s no setback, I’ll share that with you next week when we implement it.”
I'm liking what I've been hearing about our rooks in the secondary.. Hope it translates in game situations. You have to imagine they will be getting A LOT of work in the preseason.

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