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Los Angeles Rams Head Coach Jeff Fisher Addresses QB Jared Goff’s Development

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Here’s what the Rams’ man in charge had to say at Sunday’s press conference.

Los Angeles Rams Head Coach Jeff Fisher
Los Angeles Rams Head Coach Jeff Fisher
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Rams Head Coach Jeff Fisher

(Opening Remarks)

"When you have three different phases to look at, and 88 guys to evaluate, sometimes it takes a little bit longer. But, we got it done. We’re going to have a staff meeting tonight to discuss more in detail about what happened yesterday. But, one of the things that happens in preseason games is that, had they not been able to see the tape…when your first impression as you leave is, ‘This didn’t look good, that didn’t look good, we need to work here and there,’ and then you look at the tape and obviously things are different. For example, we never would’ve thought that we’d given up a 100-plus yard kickoff return to start our journey here. Then you go back and look at the tape and, you know what, there’s two blocks in the back and there’s two holds, and they weren’t called – and that’s ok. That’s part of preseason. So, we tell our players run faster, don’t get blocked in the back and separate blocks and don’t get held. There’s a lot of learning from that. And that’s pretty much how the game went. There were some really good things that we saw out of some of the younger players, and there are a lot of areas we need to continue to work on. I was especially pleased with the special teams production out of some of the younger linebackers. They’ll make a run and they will remain competitive.

"As far as the quarterback play was, (QB) Case (Keenum) was good. He had the drop. He had gotten on the field, off the field without any issues. As I talked about (QB) Jared (Goff) last night, I thought Jared’s play was good. He was productive. His decisions were good. Unfortunately, he took a couple of hits. The throw, again, to (WR Pharoh Cooper) ‘Coop’ was an outstanding throw. He had couple of drops. His shoulder was a little sore at halftime. So we decided just to shut him down. He’ll be fine. He’ll be practicing this week. But no concerns whatsoever; there’s nothing to report as far as AC separations, or things like that. He’s just a little banged up and sore, but was doing well this morning when I saw him in the training room. (QB) Sean (Mannion), on the other hand, Sean came in and made the plays that we needed to make, with the backups, and won the game for us. We were real pleased with that. I thought the offensive line, at times, did some really good things. You watched (RB) Malcolm (Brown) run the football behind that group of offensive linemen, it’s very encouraging from that standpoint. Overall, I thought things were good.

"Injury wise, (S) Brian Randolph, unfortunately, at some point will be put on injured reserve. We lost him for the year with a torn ACL. It’s very unfortunate for him. Fortunately for him, he’s gone through it before. So, we’ll tuck him away and give him an opportunity to compete next year. (WR) Nelson (Spruce) has got a knee sprain. We’re still doing more tests. Probably is going to miss a week or two, at this point. But from what I understand, surgery is not going to be necessary. So it’s just a matter of him healing up and getting back on the field. Beyond that, I think we came through it pretty well. Unfortunately, we lose a couple rookies for a season; one for a season, one for a few weeks. It’s difficult, but you have to move on."

(On his concerns regarding injuries in the preseason, and if he was trying to protect the starters)

"We were generous with the starters. We let the starters play. You saw (DE) Aaron (Donald) out there, you saw guys play. You go into it with the expectations that they’re going to play, they’re going to play hard, and when they’re done, they’re done. A couple years ago, we had a rough day in Cleveland. Because of our experience as a staff, they still need to play. You can expect to see, at this point, (RB) Todd (Gurley) this week, and (DE) Rob (Quinn) playing a little bit this week, and we’ll continue to build reps with the guys. I’ll keep you posted on what our plans are with Jared. I’d like to get Jared some snaps with the 1s, at some point. It quite likely would be this week against Kansas City."

(On if there is ever a situation where he would consider not playing a player like RB Todd Gurley at all during the preseason)

"All the situations are different, but you’d like to start the regular season with everybody having an opportunity to get some quality reps. Some guys need a lot of reps and some guys don’t, it’s all different. I’m not concerned about Todd, especially (with) what he overcame last year and stepped on the field having not had any reps in a couple weeks and was very productive. Like I said, we’d like to start the season with everybody feeling good about where they are."

(On if there is anything in particular he wants to see QB Jared Goff do for the first time or improve upon)

"Just continue to progress. Unfortunately, I think coaches see things differently than people outside, so everything was about the interception, it was about the hit, it was about this incomplete pass. And then credit was given – which is understandably recognizable – but the credit is given to the safety who overlaps and knocks the ball loose from ‘Coop’ (WR Pharoh Cooper), nobody said anything about the throw. Step up in the pocket and make a great throw against a coverage which is tough to fit the ball in, and he did that. From a coach’s standpoint, we see things differently than everybody else and we’re seeing progress. You have no idea what he did on the line of scrimmage or how he checked in and out of things or changed the protection things. We saw a lot of good things there; the huddle, the tempo, the timing – it was all there. It’s just progression and that’s what we’re looking for right now."

(On if he is relieved at all to get some of the firsts out of the way: first preseason game, first game at the Coliseum etc.)

"The team has done a great job handling everything. They’re really excited about, not only the outcome, but the experience. We haven’t seen the team today, they’ll be in tomorrow. To say that this was the largest crowd in the U.S. in the history of the National Football League for a preseason game, that speaks volumes of what we’re experiencing right now. Our focus is just getting ready for the regular season and then moving forward."

(On how he thinks LB Alec Ogletree did in his first time at the middle linebacker position)

"Alec did fine. He had a few tackles, a couple of assists, got everybody lined-up. As we look back at the tape and you go through it – we’re not ready to play run defense yet, we’ve got some work to do there and that’s a work in progress. It’s not his fault if the shade’s up the field and we lose gap integrity then the center is on Alec and he has to go make a play, which is hard. We have to do some work on our run defense and that’s going to be a focus of the week this week. Back to Alec, I thought Alec did a good job. He felt really good – his first live reps back since the injury and he directed and controlled the defense."

(On if he saw anything from the secondary from Saturday’s game after looking at the tape)

"I thought the secondary, considering we kept things really basic, I thought they played well. Guys made plays, we gave up a couple plays – a jump ball to (Cowboys WR) Dez (Bryant) is hard to break up, it’s hard to find a corner that can break up that pass. I wasn’t disappointed in the play of the secondary; some of the younger guys stepped up and made plays. What we’re looking at is – are they incorporating the techniques that they’ve been taught and are they efficient in the coverage responsibilities in the run fits, and they were. A lot of the breakdowns were attributed, more so, to things that happened up front than in the secondary."

(On if CB E.J. Gaines will be available this week)

"I expect him to be back, yeah – same thing with (T) Isaiah Battle. I would expect both of them to be up and available and ready to play this week."

(On if he is hopeful that he will have a contract extension soon, as some reports are suggesting)

"I don’t know where those reports came from and I’ve never gone into the details regarding my own personal situation. I haven’t talked to Adam Schefter or anybody, so we’ll see what happens."