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Mike Shanahan Monday Press Conference


On Chris Cooley's health:"He's got a concussion. Over the next couple of days we'll get specialists to see where he's at and we'll sure do tests over the week and find out where he's at."

On if he was able to determine when the injury to Chris Cooley occurred:"I wasn't really sure when it occurred. I'll have to ask Chris."

On if it concerns him that Chris Cooley's injury may have occurred in the second quarter and he went back into the game:"No, throughout my career, I think most people do try to do that. I can't speak for Chris, you'll have to ask him, but he's a competitor and probably didn't think it was anything big and wanted to go back in there. We could see very quickly that something was wrong and that's why he was out."

On how comfortable he is with Fred Davis if Chris Cooley is out for a significant amount of time:"Good. Fred stepped up last year when Chris went down. Hopefully, Chris won't be out but if he is out, I've got a lot of confidence in Fred."

On Carlos Rogers' injury:"His shoulder bothered him a little bit but he should be fine. He's just a little bit sore right now."

On if he thinks Albert Haynesworth can get back up to speed:"Sure, I sure hope so. I think when you don't work out for a week – he worked out Friday, Saturday and Sunday – and we worked him out Friday and Saturday, he's getting some conditioning in and getting back into the flow of things. So hopefully once we start practicing, on Saturday [if] he's feeling pretty good and his mindset is ready to go, he's had a few days of conditioning and he'll be ready to go this week."

On why Albert Haynesworth was watching the game from a suite instead of being on the sideline:"The only people that we have on the sideline are the ones that coaches ask. Everybody that's inactive for the game go up to a certain box. We had two guys on the sideline and everybody else was up in the press box and those guys [on the field] had direct roles on the sideline during the game by our coaches."

On if he thought that Albert Haynesworth playing could have helped the team:"First of all, you always want to play your best players. Rocky McIntosh would have been nice to have. Clinton Portis would've been nice to have. You've got to a make decision on what gives you the best chance to win based on who practices, what their conditions are and that's why you come up with your top 45 for the game."

On when he decided to deactivate Albert Haynesworth:"I'm not going to go through when the decision was made from our perspective but as you take a look at someone when they come in, you know they hadn't worked out for seven days, you kind of have an idea of the best direction that you're going to go. You see where they are mentally, you kind of get a feel physically and then you make a decision based on what you think gives you the best chance to win."

On if Albert Haynesworth will be a Redskin past Tuesday's trading deadline:"I will be so glad when that is over with so we don't have to talk about this anymore. We have been answering this question for the last six months everyday. We'll just have to wait and see."

On if Albert Haynesworth could have made an impact last night despite missing practice similar to Randy Moss following his trade to the Vikings:"You have to have a feeling. Randy Moss practiced throughout the whole week. Randy Moss was in excellent shape. It wasn't that he had missed practice for a week. Randy Moss does have an idea relative to different routes that Minnesota runs. Comparing a guy that's in football shape to a guy that missed practice for a week and part of the game plan and you have no interaction with him, relative to the two days he was here, or what went through his mind relative to the tragedy that he had, there was a lot of things weighed in that evaluation. It's not just based on what's best for our football team. Sometimes it's based on what's in the best interest of him."

On if he considered playing Albert Haynesworth because of his unique play-making ability despite concerns over his conditioning:"Sure, we make those decisions all the time. You have to decide on who gives you the best chance to be part of your top 45. Yeah, that was part of the evaluation. Sure it was and we decided not to activate him."

On feeling confident in saying that Albert Haynesworth will be with the Redskins past the trading deadline:"Yeah, but if I said that then you guys would know for sure so I just try to keep you guessing a little bit. You just never know. There's a pretty good chance that he won't be traded."

On the number of missed tackles and dropped interceptions:"That's something you can address, about wrapping up people more. We've got to do that throughout practice and hopefully we'll get better in that area. You make a couple of those interceptions and everyone's talking about Peyton [Manning] having a very average day instead of a good day."

On giving up 420 yards a game and being ranked 32nd in the league defensively being a factor of missed tackles or getting used to the new system and schemes:"I think there's always a combination of both. Anytime you put in a new system, it takes some time. I'm pleased with the effort in our game plan. I think if we did intercept those two passes that were right in our hands that it's a pretty good game plan. All of a sudden everybody's talking about probably the win and that's part of the process relative to evaluating where your football team is. Knowing that if you did get a couple of those interceptions that might have been a difference in the game. Just because they weren't caught, you can't think of your football team as not getting the job done, you're saying, 'Hey, you just keep on working and doing the little things the right way,' and hopefully next time we can make those plays."

On Ryan Torain's skill set that makes him so tough to tackle:"He's just got some running skills and he hasn't had the opportunity to get a lot of playing time in the National Football League. He's having that opportunity now in for a couple of weeks and he finally had the chance to play a whole game. Just the way he handled himself; he broke some tackles, he ran hard, made a few plays after contact and hopefully he can keep on doing that."

On his confidence level in Graham Gano's kicking ability:"Good. I've got a lot of confidence in Graham. He's done a great job for us. Like all kickers, they're going to miss some but they have to have the mindset that that's part of the job and you have to come back with a lot of confidence. I think he's playing with a lot of confidence."

On what he thinks the problem is with Graham Gano's long-distant kicks:"I haven't even looked at his percentages to be honest with you. The main thing is that I like his consistency in practice. He's got a lot of confidence. When a kicker does it in practice consistently, you really kind of feel good when the pressure is on them to get the job done. Obviously he missed one but he came back and he made the next one and it shows that he forgot about the first one and did it when he had to."

On if it was part of the play design to get the ball down the field in the fourth quarter:"It all depends on what the coverage is and what the play you have called. Sometimes underneath routes are taken away and you go deep and other times they're taking away the deep routes and you've got to hit a seam in there. Unfortunately, we didn't get it done."

On if Keiland Williams entering the game in the fourth quarter was related to Ryan Torain's knee injury:"No, with eight minutes left, we were down by 10 points and we went into our two-minute attack without the no-huddle. Keiland Williams was in there. He had to draw a play at the end. Keiland was a guy that we were going to put in a passing situation and he handled that well."

On how he felt about Trent Williams' performance:"Good. I thought Trent did a great job. He's starting to get back into football shape after missing a couple of weeks. I thought he made some strides last week but didn't play at a level that he's capable of playing but I thought he was much improved this week."

On how well he thinks Donovan McNabb sees the field and is getting into the flow of the offense:"It takes a while to feel very comfortable with the system in terms of terminology. I think it's an ongoing process and each game he gets a little bit better. I thought this was the best job that he's done throughout the whole season with his footwork, going to the right receivers and it's a process. I thought he'd like to have a couple of throws back but I think he's feeling much more comfortable with what we're doing each and every week."

On why he moved Anthony Armstrong to a starter:"He earned the opportunity to start. You talk about everything being in the evaluation process and people work hard and sometimes during practice and other times during games and other times it's a combination of both. We thought that he earned the right to be a starter. We knew that Joey [Galloway] would still play a lot and we've got to have a certain rotation because guys are getting tired. But Anthony deserved the opportunity to start and he'll be a starter next week as well."

On the offense's sense of urgency in the fourth quarter:"I think the main thing you want to do is find a way to score and you do what you think gives you the best chance to do that. I was pretty happy. We had, I think, 8:30 when the drive started and we scored with 2:30 or 2:40 left and we wound up having the opportunity to win the game with two minutes left at the 43-yard line, second and five with three timeouts left. I thought pretty good that that worked out in our favor."

On if there was any concern that Peyton Manning would switch things up in the running packages:"We knew that they have a heck of an offense. You've got to pick you poison. We had a game plan relative to put some pressure one him and hopefully make him throw a couple of interceptions and a couple of turnovers. We knew they were going to get some yards rushing. We didn't think they'd beat us doing that. We thought they could beat us throwing the football, obviously being as good as they've been. So, we mixed things up on them. I thought they did a heck of a job. We missed a few tackles, they got a few yards, but it was not the difference in the game."

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