Skip to main content

News | Washington Commanders -

Practice Provides Some Normalcy, Gibbs Says

On practice:

"Our injury report today, we had James Thrash (WR, #83), Sellers (Mike, FB, #45) and Clinton (Portis, RB, #26) missed practice. Cornelius Griffin (DT, #96) missed practice and Pete Kendall (OL, #66) did. We had Randy Thomas (OL, #77) practice for the first time today. It was good to get him back. Santana (Moss, WR, #89) was limited and Antwaan (Randle El, WR, #82) was limited."

On the day:

"We had an emotional day. In our meeting in the morning, Dan (Snyder, Redskins' Owner) talked and gave our players an update on his time down there [Miami] at the hospital and everything. Some of the things that he felt like would be good for the team to hear. Then we had Pete (Taylor) later on come in. Sean's dad was absolutely great and gave everybody here his feelings, everything from the first day that Sean was drafted. He had a chance to visit with everybody in a team setting. We had another individual or two, I'm not going to go into that portion of it, but we had some other people share. After that period of time we had a break and then we went into our regular meetings- shortened everything up, then had our practice. It was an emotional day for us, everybody just working through it little by little. I thought it was great for Dan (Snyder). We have an owner who really cares and had flown down there and took everybody down there. He is going to take everybody on Monday and so there was some information like that for us too. I felt like it was a day that meant a lot to everybody and a lot of people had a chance to share, then we went to work."

On if the words of Sean Taylor's family gave them encouragement:

"His dad and Jackie [Sean's girlfriend] came up and briefly talked, and both of them echo Sean's passion for things and the way he cared about things. I don't want to go into the personal aspects of what they said, but I can tell you this, that I thought both of them were great. Pete (Taylor) said a lot and shared a lot from the very first time that Sean had come here and how he felt about the organization and everybody here and his teammates. I thought it was real good. Jackie shared some of his passion. Without going into the details of it, I thought it was good for everybody to hear."

On if Pedro Taylor (Sean's father) contacted him about speaking to the team:

"He had said yesterday to Dan (Snyder, Redskins' Owner) that he would love to have a chance at some point [to speak to the team]. Then I think he said he would like to get up early this morning and come up. Dan, of course flew him up and everything. When he got here he came in and talked to me and Dan. The whole family was in the office for a little while. He was great. I don't think I could have that kind of courage. So we finished that conversation and he addressed the team and it was great. He was really great. I think it's good, the personal contact, and to let the guys hear from the family. I thought that was good. It was an emotional day for us. A lot happened. I appreciate our guys because they came out and they went to work."

On if he has a sense of how motivated the team is to play on Sunday:

"I have a tough time when we have a regular work week. We'll just see. LI don't think this is something somebody plans for. I've never gone through it. We're all just taking it a day at a time, hour by hour. We'll keep working towards this weekend."

On how he is going to try to get the team to focus on getting prepared for Sunday:

"We did the things that we felt like we should do today and then we went to work. These guys have been good workers and they are real, real smart. They understand. Each individual will probably deal with this in his own way. I felt like they had a good attitude and went to work. I think that's the best way of saying it."

On why Clinton Portis (RB, #26) did not practice:

"He was sore. A sore back and stuff, so he missed."

On if they are going to simplify things this week:

"We're going to try to stay pretty much as best we can. We shortened everything up today because we didn't get to meetings until real late. I wanted to keep the practices at the same time so the guys got out and get back on a regular schedule as best we can. We'll shorten up some stuff because we will need to, as far as meeting time and everything."

On if any of the players will be asked to help in the investigation:

"My guess would be no, but I wouldn't have any information on that."

On if he feels that he is equipped to handle this situation because of his faith:

"No, it is so hard. The way I relayed my feelings to the team, I don't mind sharing, I lost my dad. I lost my mother. I know that for both of them, they had a personal relationship with the Lord. They had said Christ died on that cross for their sins. They asked him for forgiveness. They made a personal commitment to their Lord and Savior. At that point, what we see reading God's word, is He says the saints have gone on before us in heaven and they are cheering us on. I told them that I always reflect back on that. I have my uncle, he meant a lot to me, my mother and my dad. I relate to it that way, because I miss them. I know they are in a better place and I think they are cheering me on. Every time I think about something I do I want to make sure that if they are looking down, which I know they are, that I'm doing the right thing. For me, you share some personal things like that. That's important to me. Pastor Brett (Fuller) said that Sean had that relationship and in God's word, that's where he is now."

On if he has spoken to Andre Carter (DE, #99) about how they got through a similar situation in San Francisco:

"I talked to Coach Nolan (49ers Head Coach) last night and he was really good. There were some real important things he said to me. He had volunteered and called me. I talked to him for quite a while last night. It was good information for me. We took some action based on what he felt was important. It has been so hard, we have been back and forth in meetings, and it has been hard to get together with somebody individually. Most of my day has been pretty busy trying to get stuff done."

On how important is this game for fans to be able to show their support:

"I can tell you this, it was brought up by Sean's dad and everybody here, particularly Sean's family, they know about our fan base. They talked about our fans. Our fans always do what they're supposed to do. It's just us trying to do the things we're supposed to do. I think it's the greatest sports franchise in the world with the greatest fans. I never worry about that. I never have to give that a second thought. I just want us to be able to do what we're supposed to do for them, so they can enjoy things."

On if anything today was beginning to feel more normal:

"I think the best thing was practice. Finally you get out there and guys start working. That's probably one of the better things where you get a chance to go to work. You get a chance to do something you're supposed to be doing again- playing football and coaching it, so I think practice was the best of what happened today as far as getting our minds off things."

On if the game planning has been affected by this:

"Our coaches are absolutely great. I know they worked extremely hard. With things like this, I don't know if you can quantify things or understand exactly what the effect is going to be or how you do. I know the coaches are totally dedicated. They stayed here beyond what they normally do."

On if he found himself thinking about Sean Taylor today:

"They had a great picture with him on the desk with his daughter. You see things like that, and you reflect on that--all the things that you think about with a situation like this, things that could have happened, when they happened. So, I think you go through that. It's a normal process because you miss somebody that's a part of the team, that's what we do is team. It's team and everybody counts on each other. Sean was a big part of that."

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.