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Redskins Park: Quotes - Mike Shanahan, Kyle Shanahan, Jim Haslett, Stephen Bowen

Mark The Homer

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December 8, 2011

Redskins Park

Executive Vice President/Head Coach Mike Shanahan

On if LaRon Landry’s injury is more worrisome this week:

“No, not really. It’s still sore, still the groin. But he was able to move a little bit today, so that was a good sign.”

On if he’ll rule Landry out for Sunday:

“I’m not ruling him out.”

On if he would like to have Landry available to matchup with New England’s tight ends:

“Well, you’d like him to go because he’s a great player and you’d like him to be part of your football team. Obviously, they’ve got an excellent offense and two tight ends that you can obviously matchup pretty good with even though they do a good job with putting them in different positions. But we’ll have to wait and see.”

On if Landry could be shut down for the season:

“There’s always those possibilities. I can’t tell you right now. He’s sore and I can’t tell you how quickly he’s going to be back. He could be back this weekend, he could be back tomorrow. I just don’t know.”

On if Landry’s free agency following this year impacts his decision making:

“No. We’d like him to play and we’re trying to get him ready to play a football game to help us win.”

On defensive end Stephen Bowen winning the Ed Block Courage Award:

“It’s unbelievable to see how he’s handled everything, you know, as a person. I mean, the guy is an excellent football player. He’s a quality guy. But for him to go through the situation that he went [through] with his son and have that happen to him and his family… This weekend, I got a call from him about 5:00 in the morning, I talked to Stephen about 5:00 right before the game and he told me what he was going to do. I said, ‘Hey, whatever you think is right.’ I said, ‘We support you and we’ll get somebody to take you back home.’ I had no idea what he was thinking. A lot of guys, any time you deal with death, you just don’t know. It’s a question you can’t even ask. You’re just going to let somebody do what he needs to do. After he went home and talked to his wife, he said, ‘Hey, I’m going to be back here with the team.’ So it’s pretty special.”

On Bowen’s ability to work despite his personal circumstances:

“It’s unbelievable that he has dealt with the situations that he’s dealt with and really hasn’t said anything to me. I’ve said a few things to him, but he just goes about his business and to have a professional like that, knowing that the problems he has at home and still goes about his business and the way he does it, that’s a professional.”

On if Bowen’s play on the field is even more impressive because of the circumstances:

“It really is. He prepares himself each week and he leaves no stone unturned in his preparation. And to do that with all the adversities he had off the field, it just says a lot about his character and who he is.”

On Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker:

“You can tell that everything he does is full speed. He knows how to come out of breaks. He’s a great competitor. But, he can run routes probably better than anybody in the National Football League. Just to watch how he goes about his business, you can see why he catches as many balls as he does. Obviously he’s got a great quarterback that gets him the ball.”

On how the Patriots get two tight ends involved in the offense:

“Anytime you’ve got two tight ends, it’s pretty easy to keep them involved, especially with their type of size and athletic ability. I think it really gives them the luxury to do a number of things. I know [Patriots coach] Bill [belichick] has always believed in the tight ends. If you can get two great tight ends, it puts a lot of pressure on defenses. He knows that first-hand going against offenses with two great tight ends. They do a good job of utilizing them, both in protection and in running routes… They had them drafted very high and I’m sure he’s happy that he got them.”

On if having 10 draft picks appear on the 53-man roster this season qualifies the draft as successful:

“I think usually with a draft class, you know in your third year, fourth year, for sure. We needed some depth on our football team. We’ve had a lot of injuries. These guys have gotten a chance to play probably quicker than they normally would play. But I think we had a good draft, for sure. Exactly how good it is, we’ll know in time. But I like what I’ve seen.”

On when he transitions from coaching full-time to scouting:

“Once you hit January and February, if you’re out of the playoffs, you’re looking at free agents and grading your own players. And then after you go through the process, you talk during free agency and you’re looking at your own football team to decide what direction you’re going to go. Then after that’s done, usually you get back into the college [scouting]. At least from my perspective, that’s what I do.”

On if he has assistance with scouting college players and free agents:

“We’ve got people that that’s all they do all year. They’re looking at these people and they’re putting them in a pecking order. You’re studying film, putting film together. They’re on top of it right now. What we do is we take a month — the middle of March — before free agency starts and put those guys in a pecking order just like we did last year on defense.”

On if the NFL is trending toward athletic tight ends with the ability to split out wide:

“They’ve been doing that for a long time. It’s nothing new. It’s just hard to find those guys. To find that type of athlete that can block and catch, some are more blockers, some are more receivers. To find a combination of those two guys is real hard to find.”

On Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski’s ability to beat defenders in the red zone:

“That’s why your matchups are so important. You have to have a guy that might not be 6-6 or 6-6 and a half, but is he physical? Can he jump? And does he have the athletic ability to compete with a guy like that? I think that’s very important.”

On if he can come up with a plan to attack the Patriots’ offense:

“Yeah, you better find a way or then you can’t compete. Pittsburgh had a heck of a game when they played him. They held them to 213 yards and played one of those great games. They played them at Pittsburgh and the offense did a good job controlling the tempo of the game, so it can be done, but you have to play good. Buffalo played a good game early, scored a lot of points and made a lot of big plays. You’ve got to have those type of games to beat them.”

On linebacker Ryan Kerrigan being able to avoid hitting a ‘rookie wall’ despite playing every snap this season:

“It is unusual. You don’t see too many rookies that handle themselves like he does, especially guys that go from defensive end that were a normal defensive end in college to a linebacker position in the pros. He’s very mature, very intelligent, very physical. He’s what you look for. If we had all rookies like that, you’d be in pretty good shape.”

On if it means more to beat a coach like Belichick, for whom he has so much respect:

“I think any time you play someone who has won consistently, you feel very good when you’re able to beat them. You know how hard they work and how hard they prepare and what they’ve done through the years. So, yeah, it is a special-type game.”

Offensive Coordinator Kyle Shanahan

On the Patriots giving up a lot of yards but not allowing a lot of points:

“Yeah, it’s different than what they’ve been in the past. They’re a little more bend but don’t break. I think it matches their offense because that’s such a good offense. [They] do a real good job not giving up the big play. They kind of let a lot of people do it on the field. When it comes to scoring points, they’ve been real good. It’s tough to get into the end zone versus them.”

On game planning without tight end Fred Davis and tackle Trent Williams:

“You’ve got to make adjustments. You lose two of your better players, especially at two key positions, it’s tough, but you’ve still got to find out what the guys can do. We need some guys to step up in their absence. You’ve got to change a few things up and hopefully are guys will be able to do it.”

On needing the receivers to step up:

“You need every position. You need the wideouts. You need the offensive line. You need the quarterback. You need the running back. You’ve got to put them in situations that they’re capable of doing, but everyone’s got to step up their game to make up for those two players.”

On losing Davis and Williams:

“It’s everything. They’re two totally different players. Fred’s a pretty special player in that aspect of the pass game and everything and does a hell of a job in the run game. Not everyone can do what Fred can do. Not everyone can do what Trent can do. So you have to take things into account and figure out what the guys who are replacing them do best and put them in the best situation to be successful.”

On tight end Logan Paulsen:

“Logan’s a solid football player. He works hard. He gets everything, whether he doesn’t get it right away, he’s a guy who doesn’t leave this building. He studies tape hard. He’s a very physical tough guy. He’s good at the line of scrimmage. Right when you see him, you don’t see him as a pass threat, but we’ve come to believe in him in our over two years with him. He gets the job done. He’s got solid hands. He doesn’t mess around when he catches it, he gets up the field. So he’s a guy that can move the chains for you.”

On Williams’ performance overall this season:

“I think Trent made a lot of progress this year. I think he played in six games and a quarter or seven games and a quarter, one or the other. I know he had a little spot where he got hurt and he played injured and he came back. I thought he made a lot of progress this year. We all know his athletic ability and you could see that last year. But this year, I thought he did a real good job – more consistent in his technique. He started off a little slow with it. I think that had to do with just being away for so long with the lockout and everything. He really worked at it and he was much more detailed and into it from a mental standpoint. I was real excited about him this year.”

On when the light turned on for Williams:

“I think he came in with that mindset last year that he was going to work and do stuff. I think for most rookies the NFL season is so long. They don’t really understand how it is day-in and day-out. When he came back this year, he was set to prove that he could be that guy. We harp on him all the time trying to get the most out of him. And this year he came and he went to work every day. There weren’t any days that he took off. He did everything we asked and he really tried to detail his technique and it got better throughout the year. He was a little rusty coming off that long time off they had, but he didn’t shy away from working at it. He put the time in and it showed throughout the year.”

On Patriots cornerback Kyle Arrington leading the league in interceptions:

“He’s got good hands. DBs touch a lot of balls throughout the year. When he’s touched balls, he’s picked them. Their defense they mix up. They play some man coverage and they play some soft zone. He’s done a good job at both. When the ball’s a little behind a guy or when the quarterback overthrows someone in the zone in coverage, he’s got good vision [and] he’s done a good job making plays on that ball. When he has, he’s caught them.”

On the offense turning the ball over:

“It’s huge. Not just for the offense, but for the team. I think that’s one of the main reasons we’re 4-8. Teams that turn the ball over like that – it’s tough to win. It’s something you just keep harping on and if we had the answer for it, we’d get it corrected. It’s something that we just have to keep stressing and stressing and try not to put them in situations to turn it over, but still try to score points at the same time. It’s been unfortunate and it’s definitely hindered us a lot this year.”

On when he’ll decide if Sean Locklear or Willie Smith will start at left tackle:

“We’ll make it throughout the week. Yesterday, we were in the gym, so we weren’t going full speed and everything. Today was the first day out there and they’re both getting reps at it. We’ll probably make that late Saturday or Sunday.”

On tackle Willie Smith’s progress this season:

“He’s getting more reps. With the possibility of him playing, he’s obviously getting more reps. He came from a small school [and] he had never been asked to do a lot of stuff just being at a smaller school. I think he had been overwhelmed a little bit at the beginning. He’s got the talent to do it. He’s talented. He’s tough. He doesn’t mind competing, so you’re hoping with a guy like that it’s a matter of time. You hope you can be patient with him so you can wait until it’s obvious, but with the situation we’re in, you have to throw him in there and see what he can do.”

On if practicing against linebackers Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan have helped prepare Smith:

“Yeah, I think it always helps. We compete pretty hard on our scout team. Our tempo is pretty fast. Just like with [Leonard] Hankerson, he was in a similar situation, he was extremely talented and he was a little overwhelmed when he first came to camp, but competing every day on scout team and stuff is what showed us. He made that climb where we didn’t think he would be ready at the beginning of the year. Halfway through it, he was ready to be our starter. Hopefully, Willie can be the same. When you get to spend time on scout team, the pressure’s kind of off you and you can just hone in on your game and your skills and your technique.”

On Patriots defensive end Andre Carter:

“He’s solid. He’s always been. He’s a tough long-armed football player. You can’t go to sleep on him. He’s not just going to blow you off the ball, but he’s coming every play and, if a guy sets wrong, he can throw you behind him. He’s got those long arms. He’s a good football player.”

On the Patriots’ defensive scheme:

“They adjust every week. In the past, they played a lot of four-man fronts. When everyone said they’re just a 3-4 team, they weren’t [and] they never have been. They always mix it up and you never know what you’re going to get that week. It might be something you haven’t seen all year. Last week, they did something that you haven’t seen all year. So they’re capable of doing anything. A lot of defenses are, but you know that’s what they do and you’ve got to be ready for whatever they show.”

On if the team abandoned the run last week:

“I have a hard time thinking that [we] abandoned the run. In the first half, we ran the ball well. We got in a two-minute at the end where we threw it. In the two-minute time, there were a couple of run plays that we had checks on where we went to passes. We got away from running it on a couple of throws – the one to Fred that they challenged when he was out of bounds on and the other one to Fred in man coverage, the shallow, that we threw it over his head. In the third quarter, we had 11 plays and six of those were runs and the five passes, three of those were on third downs. I believe that’s not getting away at all from the run. The problem is on those six runs and those three passes on third down, we didn’t have any first downs. So we didn’t move the chains at all and started throwing it a little more in the fourth quarter and had gotten a couple of first downs and some momentum. We went down there and kicked a field goal and then we got it back, we were down four, and we fumbled it on the third play. Then, you’re in a time when you have to throw it every play.”

On running back Roy Helu having the second most touches in the NFL in the past two weeks:

“That’s just how it played out. In Seattle, we got first downs [and] we moved the chains. That’s how Roy was running the ball. We weren’t losing yards. When there were two-yard runs, he got four. When there were four-yard runs, he got seven. When it’s like that and you have drives and stuff, you can mix it up. I don’t remember having too many three-and-outs versus Seattle. It was easy to keep it balanced and to set up other stuff. Same thing this week. I was telling Roy, ‘You’re going to be better or worse.’ He had his best game against Seattle and I thought he was even better this week versus the Jets. The tenacity and stuff he’s been running with, he has a different energy to him. I think you guys can see that on the field. We definitely can see it and we want to keep feeding him when he feels that.”

On how losing Davis and Williams affects the run game:

“Obviously, when you lose to of your best players, it affects everything and those two are very key in the run game [and] also very key in the pass game. It affects all positions. It affects the whole offense. It affects the team. We need guys to step up. You can’t just do the same stuff and you expect not to get worse when you lose two of your best players. That’s why we have to get guys in there to step up and replace those guys. And not just the guys replacing them and, at other positions, you’ve got to raise it to a different level so we can find a way to replace those yards in the pass game and give those holes in the run game.”

On Locklear as a run blocker in the two games he played in this season:

“I thought he was solid. He came in and he did some good things. I don’t remember exactly which games they were – one was Miami and I think the other one was Buffalo. He was up and down, but he definitely went out there and competed.”

Defensive Coordinator Jim Haslett

On defensive end Stephen Bowen’s mother-in-law passing away before the Jets game:

“We knew the day of that she passed – that morning. Obviously, we didn’t know what the situation was. Obviously, he kept us informed throughout the morning. It just tells you what kind of person he is – tough-minded and obviously we were going to let him take care of his business. Obviously, it’s most important to be with his wife and mother-in-law. Football comes second. Obviously, he felt his responsibility to his other team and his other family. Obviously, family comes first and then football comes after that. With what he’s gone through from that standpoint and the loss of his child earlier – [the Ed Block Courage Award] is a well-fitting award for Stephen.”

On Bowen’s mindset in light of the tragedies he has dealt with:

“He comes here and he’s all business. I ask him every so often, ‘How’s your wife doing?’ He’s kind of short with it. He doesn’t let his business get out when he comes here. I think he’s one of the better players I’ve been around in a long time. With all he’s gone through… we knew what kind of football player we were getting, but obviously the character part has been outstanding.”

On talking to Bowen before the Jets game:

“He kept us informed the whole way and I told him – talking to him earlier in the morning, I said, “You know Stephen, obviously, you have to take care of your family first. That’s the most important thing. You have to take care of your wife. You’ve just got to let me know what you’re going to do one way or another.’ And I understand because I think we said it before – faith and family come first and then football’s after that. He’s a tough-minded guy. He’s one of those guys that’s not going to let his other family down, which is the football part of it. I respect him and he’s got a third-degree MCL sprain. You’re looking at two things. He could have said, ‘I’m staying home. My knee’s still hurting.’ And he toughed it out. He played pretty good and not as well as you would have liked because he couldn’t push off the knee as much. But for him just to show up and go through that and his wife to let him show up shows you what kind of couple they are.”

On Bowen’s performance this season:

“He’s been outstanding. He really has, and for a guy to come in – him and Barry [Cofield] – and to learn [the defense]... Ask Adam [Carriker]. Adam’s a different guy now compared to last year. He’ll be so much further ahead next year. This is kind of the nature of this thing. When you make a transition from — what, 20 years running a 4-3 over a year-and-a-half span? — I think from where we were to where we’re at this year is remarkable. I think he’s going to make another jump again next year.”

On Bowen’s growth since he doesn’t have to learn a new position compared to nose tackle Barry Cofield who is learning a new position:

“I think he’ll grow a lot too. Just a comfort level in what you’re doing because he’s not just playing that position. He ends up playing tackle and sub. You’re playing multiple positions. In a 4-3, it’s a little bit different. Then, what he did in Dallas is totally different with what we do here.”

On how Bowen’s role is different with the Redskins than in Dallas:

“He was asked to two-gap. He was asked to play wide-fives. We don’t do those things. His technique is totally different. And then not having an offseason and not having a full training camp. If he had maybe that, then he would be even further ahead. I think a year from now, not even a year from now, but a training camp from now, you’ll see even more progress. Stephen’s had about three sacks taken away from him and he’s got, what, 4.5 sacks? I think that’s a career high already.”

On Barry Cofield’s instincts for batting down passes:

“Well, he really does a good job. He’s conscientious to know that he’s not going to get a lot of sacks. He can disrupt the passing game in different ways – staying in front of the quarterback, knocking balls down. I think he has the ability to get five, six sacks every year just being in that position. But he’s going to be doubled more than most people, but he’s doing a good job of other ways to affect the passing game.”

On if Cofield could be put in more one-on-one spots to rush the passer:

“He’s a good rush guy in the nickel and so is Stephen and Adam’s done a good job. If we get Jarvis [Jenkins] back next year, we feel like we have four big guys to do different things with.”

On Cofield as a leader:

“Well, you can tell that Barry kind of analyzes things. Some people kind of just go and let it flow. He kind of analyzes and studies things. Once he gets it, he gets it. He’s such a smart guy. When he watches tape, he looks at centers and how to beat him and all that. Sometimes, he can go overboard saying, ‘This guy does this.’ And I tell him, ‘That’s not the position.’ To me, it’s, ‘Go beat the crap out of the guy in front of you.’ If it’s the center, go beat him up and Barry kind of analyzes it. But I think once Barry gets to that point where it is somewhat obvious that he’s going to even take that to another game. He’s a good player in that position for the first time ever playing it.”

On the Patriots:

“Their whole football team is a great challenge. [Patriots tight end Aaron] Hernandez looks like a wideout running some times. He’s in tight. [Patriots tight end Rob] Gronkowski – he does the same thing. They line him up all over the place. I challenged this line on getting lined up right. Obviously, they’ve got great weapons and then they’ve got the guy that kind of runs everything. You don’t see too many teams slowing him down. They score a lot of points. They’re averaging what 35 points a game and I can see why. They’re a talented group.”

On Patriots quarterback Tom Brady:

“We played [Packers quarterback Aaron] Rodgers last year, [saints quarterback Drew] Brees before. I’ve played against [brett] Favre. This guy, if he’s not the greatest, he’s got to be in the top one, two, three. He’s unbelievable with what he does. He’s poised, big [and] he’s got an unbelievable arm. He can make all the throws. He’s smooth enough to stay alive in the pocket. Leadership and understanding this offense – he’s outstanding. He’s a lot like [Colts quarterback] Peyton [Manning]. There will be an argument between him, Peyton and a couple of the other guys I mentioned, but they’re all great players… He does it day-in and day-out. That’s what’s impressive. He throws up 360 yards or 380 yards passing. He does it all the time. You don’t really see over the last two years, looking at film, you don’t really see a bad game. You’ll see a game where he’s not on as much as the other ones. He’s usually on fire. He’s usually on it all the time.”

On Brady averaging 12 wins per season:

“I think that’s kind of why you mention him as one of the greatest ever. He’s got how many rings and he’s got all the wins. If you’re going to judge somebody, usually you judge it by that.”

On the risks of blitzing Brady:

“I think it’s risky to line up and play him. The guy’s seen everything – man-to-man, zone, blitz, zone-blitz-dog. He’s seen everything. Nothing really fazes him.”

On Brady throwing players open:

“They do a great job when guys are covered and the receivers, tight ends, backs – they do a good job of getting uncovered. Brady does a good job of sliding in the pocket and buying time until they get open, so it’s probably as good as anybody I’ve ever seen.”

On trying to confuse Brady:

“The great ones kind of know. They kind of get a feel or they can bait you to show what you’re showing in your hand. Usually, the good ones after they take about two steps back with the ball, they figure it out where they’re going anyway so they’ve got to watch it. He’s one of those guys.”

On comparing Brady to past great quarterbacks:

“[Dan] Marino was a great player also. Playing against him, it was a little bit different because I’m out there trying to chase him around. I think of all the guys that I’ve coached against, a couple years that I’m talking about, Peyton, Brady, Drew and Aaron really, you can put Rodgers in there, they’re probably the four about as good as you can get that ever played the game. That’s going to be hard to combat those guys.”

On how difficult it is to play defense after a turnover:

“That’s our job — to tackle them. The two plays that probably disappointed me — because we played a lot of plays last week in the second half, we had a nice run going — I think, at one time, we had six series going for like 30 yards and they weren’t moving the ball. Then, we had a couple other series that they had a couple of plays. The disappointing thing is the 25-yard run, we had an unblocked guy in the hole. They got one us and we should have had a linebacker, the young linebacker didn’t get over the top to make the play. The nine-yard [touchdown], we just missed the tackle. We actually loaded up the box. We had nine guys in there, we took a gamble. We sent everybody. We had no post player try to make a stop. We missed a tackle and we knew the guy was going to score because we didn’t have anybody in the post. We tried to gamble to get the ball back in that situation. It didn’t work. The other one is disappointing because we just didn’t make the tackle.”

On if there is a way to coach up forcing more turnovers or if it’s just good fortune:

“I think a lot of that plays into it. A lot of the plays we work at it. We work at stripping the ball and interceptions. We work at trying to get the ball out. Sometimes, it’s being in the right position at the right time. Sometimes, it’s teams are throwing the ball a little more against you or you get behind or you get a lead and you start throwing it up. You get opportunities for sacks. Sometimes, it is luck. I give you the two Dallas games, I think the ball is on the ground 11 times and we got one. Sometimes, it’s the luck of the draw. The ball pops and we haven’t been on the winning end of it.”

On not getting any sacks against the Jets:

“First of all, the Jets did a good job. They ran the ball, threw quick and play-action and they like to protect it. So you’re not going to get a lot of sacks or a lot of pressure. But ones we had opportunities to get we missed and that’s probably the disappointing thing. I thought the Jets did a good job of putting the quarterback in a position where they weren’t going to be in third-and-long, they weren’t going to drop back – seven-step drops. They weren’t going to take those drops where we could get there much. They get the ball out of their hands fast and you’re not going to get there much. There were two- and three-man routes.”

On Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker:

“He’s a remarkable receiver. Obviously, that’s the go-to guy. He’s got a lot of catches. He’s got an unbelievable amount of yards. He finds ways to get open. He’s herky-jerky. I mean he’s all over the place. He’s hard to put your hands on. He’s fun to watch if you’re not coaching against him this week, but he is remarkable the way he gets open. He pushes off and he runs routes. He’s probably as good a route-runner as I’ve ever seen. He’s a really good player to watch.”

On knowing Patriots head coach Bill Belichick:

“Yeah, I know coach pretty well.”

On how much he looks in the offseason at what Belichick does:

“I haven’t really studied their defense. When I was in New Orleans, we spent time together in the summer. We would get together a couple of summers. We would talk some defense and watch some teams and call some plays and things like that. Obviously, that was a while ago.”

Defensive End Stephen Bowen

On what it means to win the team’s Ed Block Courage Award:

“It means a lot. You know, my teammates recognizing me and the stuff that I’ve been through this past offseason, pretty much the whole year so far. I’ve just been trying to stay strong for my family and just be the best teammate I can be.”

On his family:

“The kids are good. The kids are real good. My son is doing great. A lot of people don’t know this, but on Sunday, my mother-in-law passed away early in the morning, like 4:30. We’re dealing with that right now. It’s hard, but I’ve still got to try to balance both sides.”

On how he was able to play last Sunday:

“Honestly, I don’t know. I really don’t know. It was a hard decision.”

On his mother-in-law:

“She had had muscular dystrophy for a long time. I’ve seen it deteriorate over the years. And, I mean, it was nothing… We didn’t think she was going to go now, but it’s just something my family is going to deal with day-by-day.”

On how he was notified about his mother-in-law passing while he was at the team hotel:

“I was sleeping. I got a note from security and they said that my mother-in-law passed away.”

On how he has been able to focus on football:

“I just try to separate the two, just try to clear my mind. When I’m on the field, it’s all about football. Last game was really hard. I was losing focus a lot, but I just tried to do the best I could.”

On the award coming as a result of tragic circumstances:

“I don’t wish for anybody to go through none of the stuff I’ve been through. It’s really hard, especially with all the stuff happening in one year within a span of like five months. I’m glad they [my teammates] recognized that I’m still trying to work hard and get it done on the field. But I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy.”

On his son, Stephen III:

“He’s doing great. He’s past all the prematurity stuff. He’s just growing and being a regular baby… I want to say he’s like 13 pounds… He’s strong, man.”

On facing Patriots quarterback Tom Brady this weekend:

“He’s a student of the game. He tries to exploit everybody’s weakness. There’s not too many quarterbacks that get better than him. He’s one of the best this league’s ever seen. The key with him is not letting him sit in the pocket. Try to create some pressure. A lot of games you see he’s just standing there, just sitting there. If he’s able to do that, he’s going to be able to tear us apart. That’s the key to winning a game.”

On if he thinks he made the right decision to play last week following the passing of his mother-in-law:

“I think it was the right decision. I know she would have said she would have wanted me to play. It’s just a game-time decision I had to make.”

On playing despite a torn PCL last week:

“That wasn’t even factored in anything. My mind was just somewhere else. I wasn’t even thinking about my body, just thinking about how my family is doing.”

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