St. Louis Rams kept a tight lip on the doings at Rams Park during his Friday evening press conference. It was positively Belichickian in nature, replete with the usual humdrum of platitudes, albeit sincere platitudes, about roster cuts, getting ready for the season, etc. Check it out after the jump.
(On the rookie starting quarterbacks around the league this season)
"We saw several last year as well. Teams are coaching their guys up, they're committing to them, they're going off the bat. I think every organization obviously has the right to do what they see fit. I think people have different approaches. Some guys would prefer to bring them along and some guys would prefer to put them right out there and let them play. There's nothing more valuable, as far as a young player's concerned, than playing experience. There's that old saying that the difference between an average player and a good player is about 1,000-2,000 snaps, so how do you get it?"
(On how he feels about the team going into the regular season)
"I think we're in a good spot right now. We're young, we still have a lot of work to do. You can get done a lot of work over the next ten days prior to the start of the season then we'll just have to focus on improving throughout the year. I think this is a team that's going to be fun to watch. We've got some playmakers, we've got good speed, and clearly, we've got the ability to kick the ball, as we illustrated last night. We've taken advantage of every opportunity we possibility could to get better and we'll just see how it goes."
(On the running game)
"The run game is hard to evaluate in preseason. We know who to block. I'm happy with the depth at the position. I'm very happy with (RB) Steven (Jackson), so we'll just see how things go."
(On the injuries from the game vs. Baltimore)
"We had a couple of guys that were banged up, but you push through it. You can't do a lot, you just move on. I'm not going to go into specifics of the injuries for competitive reasons, but you get a guy that goes down for an extended period of time, someone else plays, someone else gets an opportunity."
(On if injuries create any depth issues)
"If you have injuries at the same position it does, but that's why we have a pro scouting department and college scouting department - to go out and if you need to replace somebody for a time being, we will."
(On the players' upcoming schedule)
"The players are going to be off tomorrow with the exception of treatments, we'll do some work on Sunday, they'll be off Monday with the exception of treatments and then we'll do some work on Tuesday."
(On the process of trimming the roster to 53 players)
"We're not done with the process. It's a difficult process but we'll get there. We're also currently evaluating other peoples' lists. I think that's important to do. In the event that we feel like someone's out there that can help us, then we'll go ahead and make a move."
(On if the decision to place players on the practice squad is a tough one)
"It's not a tough decision, it's a decision that's in the best interest of the club. You can only keep 53 and if you've got guys that you've become familiar with over the last three or four weeks, or since offseason programs started, that you think have a chance or have the potential, then those are the guys that you would invite back to your practice squad. There's other candidates on other clubs, but most of the time, clubs have a great deal of success signing their own players back because they're used to the systems. The practice squad is also determined by depth on your team. For example, if you're short at one position because you want to go long at another position, then you would need those types of players on the practice squad just so you can practice."
(On where the toughest decisions are being made during roster cuts)
"They're all the same as far as speaking to the individual players. No conversation is easier than the other. You're letting guys go. This is their dream and they worked hard at it. You tell them the truth and you move on. You try to make them feel good about what they've done. But as far as the positions are concerned, we've got depth at a lot of positions and unfortunately we can't keep everybody there."
(On OL Wayne Hunter's performance against Baltimore)
"He did fine. He had a number of plays he was familiar with. We stuck with them and I thought he was productive."
(On if he was concerned about the roster going into training camp)
"The only real concern I had going in was the number of reps that we were going to have just because of the limited number of practices. That was a concern and it was a factor in evaluating some of the players. We just couldn't get enough snaps to fairly evaluate and/or to develop some of the younger players."
(On if he has any concerns going into the regular season)
"No. I'm not concerned. My immediate concern right now is to get the roster to where we like it. So we have to finish the process this evening and then we're going to evaluate. You constantly evaluate. You hear them talk about how you upgrade the bottom part of your roster. Well, we're going to continue to upgrade this roster if we see fit and if we should see an opportunity that presents itself. (If) a player comes up that's available or a team's interested in making a trade and we feel like it makes us better then we're going to go ahead and do so. You like to stand up and say, ‘Hey, this is the group we're going with,' but that's not the case and it's not a threatening issue or anything else. It's just our jobs to get better. The players' job is to improve. It's our jobs to improve this organization."
(On how much he's looking forward to games that count after a year off from coaching)
"Well, I'm competitive like everybody else upstairs and down the halls. You want to win every single one of them. But I'm looking forward to it. I recognize there's challenges. There's challenges each and every week. We have a tremendous challenge this week. We're playing an offense that can score points from all over the field. We've got to get ready to play good defense and we've got to get ready to play keep away with the football."
(On if the Lions are a model for a young team with high draft picks)
"They've done a great job. I've followed them closely last year because (Lions Head Coach) Jim (Schwartz) and I are close and he's done a good job with that football team."
(On if he's started preparing for Detroit)
"We've been - like Detroit has us - we've been looking at Detroit for weeks. We've looked at last year's Detroit and followed them through the preseason. So the staff has a good feel for it. So the next step is to translate to the players and create a situation the players can be successful."
(On how WRs Chris Givens and Brian Quick are progressing)
"They're in position. If they make the team then they're active on Sunday, then they're going to play."
(On how joyful it is to tell a player that they made the team)
"Well you don't necessarily have that conversation with them because you're so consumed with the other end of it, explaining to the players you're releasing them. They get a sense. The team gets together and there's 55 guys, I promise you every single one knows there's two left. But they get a sense. But there's a lot of new faces, a lot of new faces on this team."