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Skins Quotes 9/30/11


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

Marine Corps Virginia

September 30, 2011
Redskins Park

Executive Vice President/Head Coach Mike Shanahan

On if wide receiver Anthony Armstrong is going to be ruled out for Sunday’s game:
“No. It will be a pre-game [decision] and hopefully [his hamstring] will get a little bit better, so we’ll test it before the game.”

On signing players that didn’t fit into the schemes of their former teams:
“I think everybody does that if you’re playing in a three-man front or a four-man front. You’re going to try to look at people that fit in your scheme. The defensive linemen in a 3-4 are different than the defensive linemen in a 4-3.”

On if playing two tight ends against the Cowboys was a part of the game plan:
“Most of the things we do are game plans – matchups against different personnel groups and what we think we can do when we get two excellent pass rushers like the Cowboys have. [We] have two tight ends on the line of scrimmage because it gives you a little bit of an advantage because they are a little bit farther away from the quarterback. A lot of teams that play teams with excellent pass rushers will go to more two-three tight ends.”

On the team’s depth if fullback Darrel Young is unable to play:
“That’s why we took a guy like Mike [Sellers] and worked him back to the tight end position and the tight end position [to] the fullback position once we went into summer camps. And Chris Cooley, even though he’s worked at the tight end position, a lot of the assignments with that position with the motions are the same as the fullback, so he’s adjusted to that well.”

On if he focuses on key plays in games like the third-and-21 play against the Cowboys:
“If you don’t, that means you’re pretty blindsided. I could go back to the Houston game as I told you last year and I can go through five plays distinctly on offense, defense and special teams as well, at least a couple that really stood out and say 'hey, each one of those are the difference in the game.’ … You have to have a game plan of all scenarios. You live and die from those calls from offense, defense and special teams. You always re-live it, especially when you don’t win. When you win a game like that, you don’t even look back. When you lose a game, you think about it every night. That’s the nature of this business. When you put so much time into it and you have a chance to win a football game and you don’t win it, you go back through a lot of those scenarios… That’s football – it’s going back and trying to learn from mistakes and hopefully not make them again, especially when it’s the difference between going to the playoffs and not going into the playoffs.”

On learning from mistakes:
“I take a look at technique and see if everybody’s responsibility was right. If everybody did it the right way, sometimes players make plays and you give them credit too. Other times, you might be out of position on a certain play. We put a lot of pressure on the coaches and pressure on the players. Everybody has to be accountable and when everybody is accountable, then you have a chance to get better.”

On the importance of yards per play statistics for offensive balance:
“If you take a look at attempts per play, usually 6.3 yards per play will lead the NFL. Sometimes, it’ll get a little carried away for 6.5 and other times it’s 6.1. You would like to be in that area of six per play. That means you’re one of the top five offenses in the NFL and that means you’re doing well. If you’re doing well, then you’re doing a good job on third downs and you’re doing well in the red zone and you’re moving the football because you’re taking an average each play. Some teams like us, at the start of last year, were more successful on first down and we weren’t very successful in the third down area and the red zone. You’re working for that complete game and it takes a lot of work.”

On if there is a red zone percentage he strives for:
“We went through it – the Giants, we’re 3-for-4, then you’re 2-for-7 and then you’re 1-for-3. Most people don’t realize — about the three times that we were in there — where the ball was. Not many people know when you get the ball at the 19-yard line and it’s third-and-3 or you get the ball on the 18 and a half and it’s third-and-5 and everybody says 'oh, you’re in there three times inside the 20. First down.’ It doesn’t really happen that way. We have to improve in all of those areas. We’re nowhere near where we want to be and, hopefully, we get better each week… If you’re right in the 70th percentile, you’ll be at the top every year.”

On if he’s more concerned with the red zone percentage or number of trips inside the red zone:
“We kind of go through each play. Like we said, first-and-10 on the 10 and we got second-and-seven. Then, why did you lose two yards on the running play? Why do you put yourself in a third-and-long? On the third-and-5 situation on the 18, what was the play that caused it? Well, we just missed it. The next scenario – we did pretty well from the third-and-3 from the 19. We got it first-and-10 on the 12 and we got a gain of six and a gain of five. Now, it’s first-and-goal from the one and we get in there. You go through each one of those scenarios. We need to concentrate more on third down than we do in the red zone. Third down – I was more disappointed in that with the opportunities than more disappointed than the way we ran with the football to set up more play-action plays and take more advantage when we’re in third-down situations. That’s something we’ll work on during the week and hopefully we do a good enough job that it shows up Sunday.”

On how the team works to improve its play inside the red zone:
“We sit down and talk about pass protections, we talk about coverages and talk about blitzes. It’s a combination of everything and you have to have 11 guys coordinated and, hopefully, everybody doing the right thing. If you do that, then you have a chance to be one of the best. That’s what we’re working on – trying to do that.”

On the problems on third down against the Cowboys:
“You want to have manageable third downs and you don’t want to be in too many third-down-and-8-plus [situations]. If you do that, at the end of the day, you’re not going to be very good. A team that is very good in third-down-and-8-plus, they have a way to escape, because normally you don’t make those long-yard situations. You’re going to get a couple, but overall, if you keep on having third-and-10-plus, then you’re going to be in for a long day.”

(Courtesy of the Washington Redskins)


The All-Time Great
Jul 19, 2009
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Bethesda Md

Well, the Redskins have to be smarter to get more than 2-3 yards on first down to keep things manageable for Rex and the sometimes overmatched OL in pass pro.

The failure to get better yardage plays on first down in my mind was one of the bugaboos Monday night against Dallas.

The runs weren't working. And the short passes, hitches and the like, were only netting a couple of yards.

This team has to get to second and five or six.

That sets us up for a third and one or two which is makeable.

But when you are looking at third and eight or nine a lot, unless you have an elite qb you aren't going to convert many of those.

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