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2015 St. Louis Rams: Jeff Fisher Speaks On Injury Status, Wes Welker, & the Chicago Bears

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff Fisher – Post Practice – 11/13/15

(On if it’s his idea to invite the military out to practice)
"It’s an organizational thing that we’ve been doing really, I believe since before I got here. I think it’s great we’re recognizing our service men and women here, the local ones. We’ll recognize them at our game Sunday. Really, it’s special. It’s special for us to have an opportunity to visit with them. We appreciate so much what they’ve done for us. So, it’s the second opportunity we’ve had since camp. Camp, we got to go to Scott Air Force Base and now, we’ve got a lot of soldiers out."

(On if he’s going to get a chance to visit with Daniel Rodriguez on Sunday)
"I’m looking forward to seeing Danny, yeah. We were hopeful that he was going to make it in today, but he didn’t. He had some flight issues. But, he’ll be here."

(On how healthy the injured starters are)
"We got better. (S) T.J. (McDonald) practiced. Both Rob’s practiced. (No. 94 DE) Quinn and (No.79 T) Havenstein, so that was good. We even got (DE) Chris Long on the field a little bit, so they got better."

(On how he’s going to list S. T.J. McDonald, DE Robert Quinn and T Rob Havenstein on Sunday)
"Questionable, questionable, questionable. Limited practice, questionable. All three of them."

(On WR Wes Welker’s playing status)
"We still have some stuff to do tomorrow. He’ll meet this afternoon and we’ll get some stuff done tomorrow. We’ll just see how it is. We’ve typically carried five receivers into the game, and we’ll just see how it goes."

(On if he’s encouraged with what he’s seen from Welker so far)
"Encouraged, yeah. He has a really good feel. Now, keep in mind, I mean, he practiced with the workout on Monday and then, two practices on Tuesday and Wednesday, three in a row. So, I want to make sure that he was okay. He felt pretty good today."

(On if Welker is getting a grasp of what he’s being asked to do)
"He is. Yeah, we have some things in the offense for him. The ball’s not necessarily designed to go to him, but it may if he plays."

(On the difficulty of replacing WR Stedman Bailey on special teams)
"Well, that’s been a challenge for Coach (John) Fassel. (WR) Bradley’s (Marquez) stepped up. (S) Christian (Bryant) has stepped up, so they’ll handle the roles. Sted as a gunner is as good as there is. He goes down and he makes tackles. So, we feel like Bradley can do it. But, encouraging for us it looks like we’ll have (RB) Chase (Reynolds) back. I think Chase was listed as probable, so Chase can fill in and we can move guys around."

(On how he views this game against Chicago)
"I mean, you look at their games. The last five, they’ve all been three points or less, whether they won or lost them. The overtime loss to Detroit was tough on them, but they’re playing good ball. They’re playing good defense. They have it going. They’re still in it. (Bears QB) Jay’s (Cutler) going to be a big challenge for us as well as their running game will. Then, defensively, as we’ve talked, they’re well-coached. (Bears Defensive Coordinator) Vic (Fangio) does a great job with them. They’re disciplined, well-coached. They don’t give up a lot of plays."

Gregg Williams – Post Practice – 11/13/15

(On if it was a perfect day for practice)
"Did you see how much energy they had? That’s so fun to see in how far we’ve come now. When we first started doing that little compete period, ‘Coach, you’re making us do this at the end of practice?’ Now, look at how much energy. They must be saving themselves for that end of the practice kind of stuff and they’re dancing and hollering back and forth at each other. That makes it fun. Fast Friday. Favorite day. It really makes it fun. And it’s fun to see them work back and forth, offense, defense. It’s good."

(On getting some injured players back)
"Yeah, that’s looking pretty good. So, I’m hoping and I don’t know until we see about whatever set back it is. At practice today, if they could take the psychological battle also of me giving them at bunch of static about being shocked that they’re actually dressed in uniform and doing what their job is supposed to be doing. But, they did a great job. So, we’ll see how it goes."

(On being down four starters vs. Minnesota)
"One of the things, and I think I said this earlier to you guys, is that I really take a lot of pride in trying to mentor young coaches, young people, too. We have a philosophy for everything. And one of the things that we have in our book that we spend a lot of time on back in the spring, through training camp and even now is called ‘Next Man Up’ philosophy. As a coach, you’ve got to get every single person in your position group ready to go. It’s about managing personnel. You’ve got to understand managing personnel. If a guy is on this team, he deserves an opportunity to play and when he does, how will he play? Our guys do a very good job with that. I love the schedule we have here now. It gives us a lot more time to spend with players. I think back to when I started this coaching profession 30-something years ago, you spend 80 percent of your day trying to get your lesson plan ready to go for 20 percent of the time with the players. Now, we get a chance through technology and everything to spend a ton of time with players. Our coaches have done a great job with that. I’m very appreciative. And these other players that got their opportunity appreciate it too."

(On what he sees from Bears QB Jay Cutler)
"I’ve gone against him with lots of different guys. He’s played for lots of different people. But, I think (Offensive Coordinator) Adam (Gase) and (Quarterbacks Coach) Dowell (Loggains) both are doing a good job with his mechanics. His confidence is high. He’s a very talented guy. You can see his mechanics a little bit. I think they were talking about that on Monday Night Football this past week. They were talking quite a bit about that. Until I got back in and started studying all of the film and I’ve watched every single clip of film that they’ve played this year, they’ve done a good job. That’s the kind of (Bears Head Coach) John Fox team you always see. He’s a very good person on managing fundamentals. Emphasizing those kinds of things. And you can see not only in Cutler, but in a lot of those guys they’re doing that. They’re a very well-coached team and I respect that."

(On what is so tough about Bears WR Alshon Jeffery)
"The big thing about him is that people get hung up way too much in speed. You love to have that package of a guy that can run away from you. But, his catch-radius and his length and his vertical ability that once he gets up into the air, he disregards the fall. He disregards everything. His eyes are on the ball. He makes some great catches once he elevates up into the air. Matchup principles there, you try to take a look at that. But, he’s done a very good job catching some tough passes. Jay does a good job on throwing him open also. So, we’ve got our work cut out for us there."

(On his thoughts on Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer’s comments after the game)
"Those are things…we’re on to Chicago right now. I’m not worrying about that. The things that go on in our game is that we’re always going to play, no matter where I’m at, we’re going to play faster, smarter, tougher, for longer than any opponent. That’s all I’m going to say."

(On if it bothers him that even a couple years later people are still bringing it up)
"The whole thing on that is that, that’s long, long ago. Penalties are down since I got here. Everywhere that I’ve been, we don’t like to do those type of things. But, I will make my one comment on (CB) Lamarcus Joyner. He is exactly what I want to coach. And if you guys break that play down, you’ll see that (Vikings QB) Teddy (Bridgewater) tries to shimmy a little bit like he’s getting to run for extra yardage and then lays down. Lamarcus was just trying to tackle him. And that’s the bam-bam part of the play. Those things come up. He’s aggressive. There wasn’t anything. He’s almost trying to avoid the contact. You can see that. Those are things that come up and that’s just part of our game."

(On playing in a division with quarterbacks who scramble and try to get extra yards and if that makes it harder on his defense in those situations)
"We’re going to play the game through the echo of the whistle. That’s how we’ve always done it. We’re going to play the game that way and there’s nothing that I can ever pull these guys back. I’ve spent my life trying to speed up decisions, speed up players, get them to play harder, get them to play faster. And bam-bam when something happens like that, it’s just the speed of the game. It’s easy to see in slow motion. It’s easy to say about all of those kinds of things. But, when you’re really playing in a game, it’s a different world out there. It’s a vastly different world."

(On the job that DE Matt Longacre did last week)
"He did a great job. I really am happy for him to get that opportunity because I didn’t know when it was going to take place. I thought he played very well in the preseason. Ever since he’s been here, if you guys could see behind the scenes, the tests that he does. We do a written test by every position every week on all of the multiple things we do. He’s like a coach when you take a look at his tests. He’s a tough guy, too. It was fun to see him get that opportunity. He did a very good job and he deserves to play in this league, he really does."

(On if he’s looking forward to seeing Bears CBTracy Porter)
"It’s funny, I had forgotten that he’d gone up there. Earlier in the week the guys that talked to me about that, yeah I will. I kind of created a monster there a long time ago. With him, he would never talk, he wouldn’t say anything. Before I left the Saints, we couldn’t shut him up and get him to sit down and do anything. All he did was talk, talk, talk. But, it was fun. It’ll be good to see him and I was with (KR Marc) Mariani down at Tennessee. It’ll be good to see (Bears GM) Ryan Pace. Ryan Pace and I, the GM up there were together down at the Saints. I think he did a fabulous job and I’m just so happy that he’s got his opportunity for this position right here. He’s done a fantastic job rising up through the ranks in our league. There will be a little bit of that. I’ll see him way, way after the game. I don’t do any of that stuff before the game."