ALLEN: "Good morning everyone. Welcome to Redskins Park and the first day of our mandatory minicamp. I think it's important as we start to take you back to the beginning because this process really started at the combine. And at the combine this year, we had to rearrange and reassign and reorganize our scouting department, and at that time it was a great opportunity to evaluate what we were doing and the people we had within the Redskins in our draft process and in our entire personnel department.
"We had Coach [Jay] Gruden take the lead in all the interviews at the combine, and he did a terrific job of drawing out the real personality of the players. We asked the scouts to make sure that they gave the coaches all the personal information that they have garnered over the year so we could find out the actual integrity and the character of these players. Right after the combine, we came back and free agency started and Alex Santos did a terrific job of leading the meetings on who were the free agent prospects we liked. We involved all the coaches. And with Eric Schaffer's help and guidance, we were able to retain the key players for us and add several players who are going to help us in 2017 and beyond. And as I mentioned Eric Schaffer, Eric is going to have a more defined role, or actually just recognize him for what's he's done. He's going to be working hand-in-hand in the personnel department, things he has been doing. But he's going to have an enhanced role, as you'll hear.
"After free agency, we had the scouts – all the area scouts and Scott Campbell – come back a week early. We needed to reassess every player that we were going to consider on our draft board. We had our area scouts, we had them have to do extra work. We had to do cross-checks. We were short on a number of reports for this draft and they did a great job of working extra time to evaluate. And once again, it was a great opportunity to evaluate what we were doing as a staff and the people who are working for the Redskins. Scott Campbell, as you know, led that draft process, and watching the cooperation and the effort the people put into it was very impressive.
"After the draft, I started talking to people outside of the Redskins about the opportunity and wanted to head what their vision was for this position and what role they thought they could fit to help the Redskins win. Talked to over a dozen candidates and must say that some were impressive and some might fit the role of what we were looking for. But there was one person who we had met with inside the Redskins that we know will fit the role. It's a person that I hired in 2004 with Tampa, and when you're looking for someone in this position, you want somebody who has unquestionable character, great leadership skills, a presence and a great teammate for everyone around him, and that pointed to Doug.
"In Doug's interview with us, he presented a plan and we had several talks after that and we accepted Doug's plan. His résumé is impressive, as you all know, but it's really remarkable when you consider everything he's done that matters in this job. This job is daily communication and leadership of the personnel department. It's daily communication and leadership of our coaches and players. And Doug being a high school coach, a high school athletic director, obviously an outstanding player, fits the role perfectly for where we want to be as Washington Redskins. His probably most-understated accomplishment, he's one of only a handful of people who is in two Ring of Honors in the NFL. And it's not just about the player, it's about the man, and I'm proud to announce our new Senior Vice President of Player Personnel, Doug Williams."
WILLIAMS: "Thanks, Bruce. Great morning. There's a lot I can say, but before I get started, first thing I want to do is thank Mr. Snyder for giving me this opportunity and Bruce for the process that we went through to get here. I mean, I knew Bruce was talking to a lot of people, and that's the way the job goes, but at the same time, a lot of people like me standing here, I'm just fortunate enough to be here and I certainly appreciate that.
"The Washington Redskins don't start today with me. It goes all the way back to 1986 when I got a call from a guy by the name of Joe Gibbs, and when Coach Gibbs got off the phone, I talked to Bobby Beathard. A couple of days later, I was in Washington and I had a chance to sit down with a guy by the name of Bobby Mitchell. It resonated that day what this organization was all about – the legacy and the history of the Washington Redskins – and I was one proud guy to be a part of it. And it afforded me an opportunity to do something that I think every player wants to do, and that's to go to the Super Bowl, and I got a chance to do that. And about four years ago, I got a chance to come back, and this is like coming back home to me. You know, I've been around the circuit, but there's nothing like coming back here to a place that gave you an opportunity to be on top of the stage in football. Washington did that for me.
"But not only I came back, I found a great, working group of guys. And as I stand here and Bruce entrusted me to lead the personnel department, it was easy to make changes and not go outside and do the changes that we had to make or wanted to make, let me say that. Some of the changes we made I think are going to be significant because when we did this draft this past year – and I've been in drafts in Jacksonville, I've been in drafts in Tampa and I've been in drafts here – I can honestly say I've never seen communication between a total staff like we did this year. We understand all of the things that was going on, but that wasn't for us. We were looking forward, not looking backwards. We made sure we did the best job that we possibly can for the Washington Redskins.
"One of the guys that really took the lead, he was a scout on the road but he stood out like a sore thumb, and that was Kyle Smith. When I submitted my plan to Bruce, Kyle Smith was the guy that I thought could lead this organization from Director of College Scouting, so I tapped him as the Director of College Scouting. Tim Gribble was another guy, and we felt like we needed a guy that could be an over-the-top, national-type of guy. We made him Assistant [Director of College Scouting] to Kyle… We had guys that have been in-house, like Richard Mann, we made Assistant Director of Pro [Personnel]. Alex Santos, who Bruce mentioned earlier, did a great job of leading us through free agency. He's still here. Jeff Scott, Brian Zeches, who did a wonderful job coordinating everything we needed to do in the scouting department. But one of the most important guys, and Bruce mentioned it and some of you all know, is Eric Schaffer. 'Schaffe' is a guy that everybody can sit down and talk to about whatever we're going on this football team. Nobody takes notes like Eric Schaffer. I've been here four years and I bet he can tell you the first word I said four years ago. That's who Eric Schaffer is. That's how important he is. And here's the great opportunity for him to be the Vice President of Football Operations.
"That hallway [the personnel hallway] is a great hallway. This hallway on this side is a great hall with the coaching staff. I've never seen a coaching staff work together like the one we have. Together, we're going to have a good marriage between Jay and myself and the personnel department and that's what it's all about. Our job is not to coach 'em, our job is to pick 'em. And we're going to try to do the best job – we will do the best job – to give Jay and his coaching staff the players he needs to take all of us back to the Super Bowl.
"Standing here today, I'm a real humble individual and I'm going to say something my college coach used to always say to me, he 'had to be the luckiest man in the world,' and that's how I feel this morning to be in this position proudly. I'm humbled this morning, but it's my job to lead the personnel department and we're going to do that with all the continuity that we have back there. So I want to say thank you to Bruce again, thanks to Mr. Snyder for giving me this opportunity, and thanks to all the fans in Washington, D.C."
On if this position is where Williams has always wanted to be:
WILLIAMS: "Of course. I think everybody that's down that hall, down in the personnel, would like to be in this position. If they didn't, they don't need to be in personnel. It's kind of like a player. If you just practice not to play, you don't need to be practicing. We need somebody who practices who wants to play. And, you know, unfortunately, we've only got one position and I was fortunate enough to be in this position. But, I think everybody works together because, you look at me, I'm older than most of the guys down there. They've got a chance to get in this position one day. I'm not going to be here forever, but I'm here now until I stay until the end."
On Williams' philosophy of players who can take Redskins back to the Super Bowl:
WILLIAMS: "Number one, character matters, and athletic ability matters a great deal. But I think at the end of the day, I don't think you can pick the size, because when you think about it, we got a little guy on our football team by the name of Jamison Crowder, probably the toughest football player in the league. So, you can't say we don't want little guys, but what we really want is good football players. I think at the end of the day, we're going to see, 'Could he play football?' and 'Does he help us win the Super Bowl?'
On Williams' vision:
WILLIAMS: "I think the vision, number one, is the people you want to be working with. And, having saw these guys the last four years and the way we communicated down that hall, those are the kind of people you want to work with. And people not only communicate, but knew what they [were] talking about. And we was able to see all that in there. It wasn't no argument on anything. Yeah, we've got some disagreements on certain things, but at the end of the day, we found a way to get to where we want to get, and come to a conclusion."
On the roster:
WILLIAMS: "I don't think you come here and say 'Hey, let's change something,' because if you look at this roster now, since I've been here, I can honestly say this is the best roster we've had. I think we have depth at a lot of positions, and that's what it's all about because, if an injury occurs, you want to keep moving forward. I don't think it's so much change as much adding more good football players to this roster."
On Scott Campbell's role:
WILLIAMS: "Yes, Scott Campbell actually does a tremendous job. He ran the draft this year. But, what Scott does, Scott is probably one of the best evaluators. He likes scouting. We made Scott, I didn't mention it, but we made Scott the Senior Personnel Executive. That's what he's doing. We talked to Scott yesterday, and he was all for it. He respects Kyle for what he has done and he understands."
On if Williams ever saw this day coming for himself:
WILLIAMS: "Well, you know what, you want this day to come. And I think when you get up every morning, you hope it'll come. It's here today. And, I'm blessed and I'm embracing it, and we're going to go forward with it."
On what makes this position special:
WILLIAMS: "Well, let me say this, from the time I've been an athlete, I've been in a leadership role, basically. And, I think what this does, this is entrusting some more leadership upon you. Leadership is about the people you work with. And if you've got a good group of people you're working with, it makes leadership a lot easier. I love being in this position and I'm looking forward to working with the guys that we have down the hall."
On Williams' involvement with QB Kirk Cousins currently:
WILLIAMS: "Well, it's hard to say to be involved with Kirk Cousins because I haven't been in this position. But we do have people who have been involved with Kirk Cousins for the last year or so, so we're going to make sure to continue to do what they're doing. It might be good also to not step in and let Eric Schaffer finish the job."
On how Williams showed Dan Snyder and Allen he was the guy for the job:
WILLIAMS: "Well, you know what, my role is important as anybody who is here's role. That is not to look back and keep going forward. That's what we did. Nobody said, 'Well, I've got to pick up the slack.' We understood what we had to do. Nobody said, 'Hey, we've got to keep talking about what had happened.' We talked about the draft [being] in front of us, the combine, after we come out of the combine it's the pro days, and nobody stopped. Nobody stopped grinding. I think that's the bottom line is we treat it like a rearview mirror. If you look up in the rearview mirror, everything is behind you. That's what we did, so we continued to go forward."
On Williams knowing Allen for a long time:
WILLIAMS: "I don't know how well you know Bruce, but I know Bruce, and I don't think by me knowing Bruce had the impact as much as the plan and the trust that he had in me. You know, Bruce knows a lot of people. And I'm sure the people that he talked to, he's known them longer than me. But, I was tasked for this position, and I don't know whether it was about longevity or the person who he wanted to lead and that was me."
On possible disagreements:
WILLIAMS: "Well, first of all the most important disagreement, I hope we don't have any, would probably be between Jay and myself on players. But, at the end of the day, if there is a disagreement, and there's a wide disagreement, we need to leave that player alone. But, if there's a disagreement about this wide, we need to work it out to find out more about that player."
On Williams and Gruden working together on the roster:
WILLIAMS: "My job is Senior Vice President of Personnel. I'm going to run my hallway. Jay's going to run the football team. My job is to get Jay football players, and that's what we're going do."
On lessons from Williams' playing career:
WILLIAMS: "Number one, I was fortunate enough to play for a bunch of coaches who had great leadership. From the time… Eddie Robinson, going to Tampa with John McKay, going to the USFL with Frank Kush, Woody Widenhofer, and coming here with Joe Gibbs. I had the opportunity to watch all those guys work. When you've got those kind of guys who are successful, you know, leadership had to play a part in it. So, you kind of look at how those guys work, and you try to say, 'Hey, it's all about the people you work with,' and that's the bottom line."
On if Williams approached Allen seeking the position:
WILLIAMS: "That's not exactly how it worked. When there's an opening, there's a lot of guys [who] would love to be in this position, I just happened to be one of them. Like I said, Bruce said he talked to a lot of people and I know that, but at the same time, when the opportunity came for me to sit down in front of Bruce, I had a plan and we didn't talk one time, we didn't talk two times, we didn't talk three times. We actually sat down about four times and went over and over until we got to a plan that… and I didn't know, I didn't know whether he liked my plan or not because he was still talking to people. Within the last couple of days, three days, is when I really found out that this was the direction that we [were] going."
On what made Allen believe Williams was the right man for the job:
ALLEN: "Doug's history and experience in football really makes up the person that he is. When I hired him in Tampa in 2004, we had a different phrase for it that I really can't say, but he was my 'people-meter.' He had an uncanny ability to talk to a player or a coach in one or two minutes and be able to read that person. I was proud of when Doug presented his plan because his vision was a team. He was a quarterback again leading a team, and the way he talked just now and the way he talked when we had discussions about his teammates and what they bring to the table and the necessity of having good people really, really shined."
On if Allen approached Williams about filling the role:
ALLEN: "Well, I spoke to everybody in our office. Everyone who had experienced the last few years and beyond have opinions and one of the things we wanted to do this offseason from the beginning was find out what we did wrong. We should not have lost the last game of the season, and from that Giant game on, the direction of this organization was, 'We have to get better. We have to find out ways to win that game when we have that opportunity.' So when Doug brought his plan in, that's what started the discussions."
On why Allen did not elect to have a General Manager in title:
ALLEN: "Well, one, this was Doug's plan. People interviewed with different titles and all of that, but this was Doug's plan of wanting to develop and lead the personnel department. And I want to echo, and you heard Doug speak, his relationship with the head coach is critical. Every department, every team in the league has that same need to have communication. Coach Gruden and Doug have a great relationship."
On who will have final say:
ALLEN: "That'll be the same. It's going to be a Redskin decision. No different than how we did free agency, no different than how we did the draft. Coach Gruden has influence, Doug will have influence and between them, they ought to be able to work it out and, yes, I will be involved."
On how Eric Schaffer's role would fit into an organizational chart:
ALLEN: "Eric is a unique person who has many talents and wears many hats for us. I guess as a general counsel he would be in a hierarchy somewhere. As our chief negotiator, he's in a hierarchy somewhere. He's a critical component to it. Doug's in charge of the personnel department and Eric will follow what [Williams] wants him to do on projects and things of that nature."
On if Williams is third in command on the football side:
ALLEN: "Well, the most important person is the person with the football at that time. We're a football team."
On the decision to promote Kyle Smith:
ALLEN: "That's really a question for Doug. Doug made the move. Kyle, I will say on behalf of the Redskins, he came here as an intern, Scott Campbell saw his talents instantly and we put him out into the field. I think this will be his fourth move, we were discussing. We've moved him from the southwest to the southeast, but Doug, as he said, saw talents in him [Smith] and we believe he has a great future."
On if Head Coach Jay Gruden will have the final say on the roster:
ALLEN: "I think I said this once before, I know that's a catchy little phase. The last few years, Jay and Scot [McCloughan] have reported to me and it's no different, Doug and Jay are going to report to me. That's come up one time in my entire career. I wanted to keep a DB [defensive back], the head coach wanted to keep a tight end and Al Davis wanted to keep a linebacker. We kept the linebacker, just in case you were wondering [laughter]. That's the only time in 20 years. Together we will make the decision and it'll be very similar to the draft. The debates happened before and it's based on facts."
On when Allen saw Williams make the transition into being ready for this kind of role:
ALLEN: "Early in Tampa, early in Tampa. Doug has a natural charisma and a natural leadership ability to him. I had recommended him to some other teams when we were in Tampa that were looking for a new director and it didn't work out and that's fortunate for us."
On if Allen is taking any responsibilities away from Schaffer:
ALLEN: "No, we keep giving him more. He's been doing this. He's been, as Doug said, the great note-taker and reminding everyone what their grades were for the last several years. We're just recognizing that."
On if he Allen optimistic about QB Kirk Cousins' contract negotiations:
ALLEN: "Well, we sure hope so. Right now after we finish this, we're concerned about having a good practice today and the deadlines will take care of itself. I think we've been real clear over the year of what we think of Kirk and how we want him back."
On possibly adding front officer personnel from outside of the organization:
ALLEN: "Doug is going to hire people."
On if front office personnel from outside of the organization have been hired yet:
On if there is a timeline for bringing in front office personnel from outside of the organization:
WILLIAMS: "We do have some openings in the scouting area and some interns. Actually, we've got a couple of guys in now interviewing for the intern position. We're going to bring a couple more guys in. We also scheduled Kyle [Smith], [Tim] Gribble and I, we got together yesterday, we've got some guys that's going to come in for some scouting positions, so, yeah, we going to add some more people to the personnel department."
On what type of person Williams is looking to hire:
WILLIAMS: "Somebody who can do the job, somebody maybe who has done the job. If a guy hasn't done the job, he'd be interviewing for the intern position."
Head Coach Jay Gruden
On introducing Doug Williams' new role to the team at the end of practice:
"We just welcomed Doug. You know, it's great to hire somebody in-house, somebody who has worked very hard for this team and organization. He's done some great things, not only as a player, but also working here in the scouting department. He's worked very hard. He's never used his name and what he's accomplished here as a crutch to get him to where he is right now. He just worked very hard and earned the role he's received today. We're very happy for him."
On being animated during two-minute drills in practice today:
"I think two-minute drill, you look at the course of a 16-game season, whether it's end-of-half or end-of-games, it'll come down and it'll happen more often than not. It's something that we take a lot of pride in. We have to be very sharp in what we do, so I want to make sure we get as many situational plays in that two-minute drill as possible. Heck, we had a fourth and 10 today, we had a third down in the red zone with no timeouts, we had a lot of different situations there that come right down to it. You know, you have to make those plays, both sides of the ball. So, it was great to challenge them and push them, get the clock working, use the timeouts, which is good for me. It's just something that we try to do almost every day."
On the importance of Williams' respect amongst the players:
"That's important. You know, I think the history of him being a player, just climbing up through the ranks like he has, I think all the players all feel comfortable going to him. You know, he's going to expect greatness though. It's not like he's going to be a shoulder to cry on or anything like that. He's going to demand a lot out of them. [He's] a guy that's been there and done that, both on and off the field. I think it's a great guy to have around."
On his interactions with the people who received new titles today:
"Yeah, I've had great interactions with everybody in this building. But I try to stay in my lane, and my lane is to coach this football team. They're going to try to give me as good of players as possible, and you know, I'll have my input here and there, but I'm just going to stay in my lane. I really have a lot of respect for everybody who accomplished some success, recent success, like Doug and obviously Kyle [Smith], so it's good to see your guys' growth in the organization. They get rewarded for hard work. You don't want to always go outside of the organization and hire new people when you have people in here that are grinding and working hard and are trying to develop themselves as a professional. I think these guys have deserved it."
On seeing the offense upon the return of TE Jordan Reed and T Trent Williams:
"It's pretty good. You know, Jordan had a pretty good day; he had about 11 catches [chuckling]. You just feel good seeing Trent over there at left tackle. We've had guys step up without them, but it's great to see them. It's great to see the whole group back. Matt Jones had a couple of catches today and did some good things. To get everybody out here working, getting them on the same page, sweating, running, getting some situational work in, getting some good football in before the break was good.
On if he spoke with RB Matt Jones about his absence from OTAs:
"I didn't talk about it. You're put in unique situation as a head coach. They're voluntary. I had discussions with Jordan and Trent and I knew they were going to miss and Matt was here for a little while and he got some good work in the weight room, but then he missed the last couple of weeks. But he's here now and he had a good day today. He's going to be thrown in the mix with the other running backs who have been here working and we'll go from there once we hit training camp."
On if Jones could earn back the starting role:
"It's all competition. Guys who make plays and guys who are productive are guys that I like to play. It's no secret. I'm just telling you it's going to be hard to move a guy who has been here working very hard and done such a good job, but it's not impossible. Rob Kelley has done a great job. I like what Samaje [Perine] has done, I like what Mack Brown has done. Heck, Keith Marshall has shown up big after his injury, and Matt. All of those guys can play. And then obviously you have Chris Thompson, who has a lockdown role as third-down back, and maybe a little bit more, so it's really a tough position to crack, but I wouldn't put anything past Matt. He's a big, physical guy."
On if it's too much to say that the football staff is currently as strong as it has been during his tenure:
"No, that's not too much to say. You know, this being my fourth year, I believe it is. I think you start to build some camaraderie, and you bring the players and the coaches that you have with you, you feel really good about. That's important. You know, I think that comes with being around people for a long time, and people knowing what you like, what you like out of people, and getting to know them, and it's great to promote people within. We lose a couple of good coaches, we let go of a couple of good coaches, and things happen. Change happens, but the guys that are here still that have been here, we feel very good about moving forward. We feel like we can build a very successful franchise here for a long time."
On what difference he sees in CB Kendall Fuller now compared to this time last year:
"I think his confidence in his body, number one. Just talking to him yesterday or today, I think he feels a lot better with where he is physically and that's important obviously for a DB. We probably pushed him a little bit too hard. He felt good, but I don't think he was really quite his 100 percent self. He was good enough to play, he's a tough guy, he'll fight through anything, but I think this year he feels like the strength is back. He's got a little bit more speed and quickness and I think you'll see a better player."
On how he keeps LB Junior Galette from pushing himself too hard:
"I never want to push anybody not enough. I think we're going to try to push him as much as we can, but he has to also be smart, there's a fine line there. Only he can tell us how his body feels. He and the trainers do a great job. If he's out there and they give me the green light to practice him, I'm going to push him, that's my job. It's his job and the trainers' job to let me know when I should taper off, so we'll just go from there. If he's dressed, got a helmet on out there, we're going to expect a lot of great things from Junior. He still has a good burst, he's shown his stamina is starting to improve, he's got great hands, he can bend, so it's good to see him rush."
On Galette saying he lost weight:
"I think after the second injury he gained a little weight, a little frustrated, a little down on himself, maybe, I don't know. His face looked a little chunky when I first saw him, but he came in and lost the weight, no problem. Junior is a hard worker. Once he was able to really work and push and run and exercise, it came off like that. You're never going to have an issue with Junior underworking or being out of shape or not ready to play. He'll get himself ready."
On the weight of LB Ryan Anderson and other rookies:
"It's not so much Ryan Anderson, it's just the rookie class. After the combine or Senior Bowls or whatever they go through, they have a time off where they just kind of maybe not get in great football shape. I think every rookie around the league has a transition period of 'OK, I have to really get back into football shape,' but he's doing a fine job. They've already put on some weight, muscle mass, and lost some fat already down here, him and Jonathan [Allen] and every rookie so far in the weight room. And they're just going to continue to grow and get better. They work extremely hard, it's in their DNA, and we won't have a problem with Ryan."
On if he expected RB Matt Jones to return today and if running back is the team's deepest position:
"There was no question in my mind, it's mandatory camp. He's on our team. I think we have a very deep group, very exciting group, but we have other positions that I feel really good about, too. I think outside linebacker is exciting. Once Trent Murphy gets back, you have Trent, Preston [Smith], Junior [Galette], you've got [Ryan] Kerrigan, you've got Chris Carter, you've got [Houston] Bates when he comes back, you've got Lynden Trail, you've got a good stable of guys there. And if I missed somebody, it's not on purpose. We have some good players, so it's very exciting. I think we put together a pretty good team, a deep team. The whole thing about us, what we need to do is play together get on the same page. Coach [Greg] Manusky has got a new scheme out there, we've got some new coverages they're working on, some new blitzes. Offensively we've got to get in the right sync with the new receivers that we have. Josh [Doctson] is not new, but he is new kind of, obviously Terrelle Pryor. Got a lot of work to do, but we're excited about the depth that we have right now."
On Defensive Backs Coach Torrian Gray preaching fundamentals:
"That's been his M.O. as far as the research that I did on him talking to players that have played for him and guys he's worked with, he's a fundamentally sound guy. No disrespect to the coaches we had, they were more of the big-picture-type coaches and they're good coaches, but Torrian is more of a hands-on, fundamental, technique guy and I think that's something we really needed to work on. There's a lot of new coverages we have to talk about and where's your new number two, who's got number three, all that stuff, where you're drop is, what are you looking at, and all of that stuff, but at the end of the day, so much technique with the defensive backs is very, very important and I think we can never over-teach that. Torrian is one of the better teachers that I at least interviewed and talked to."
On S Deshazor Everett:
"Deshazor is one of those guys that's grown. He's an ex-corner, too, and he was new to the safety position. We moved him back there, we had to find a role for him because he was so good on special teams and he's starting to get better and better at safety, he really is. He's doing a good job. I like where he is. Obviously, we have Will Blackmon making that transition, he's getting more and more comfortable. From an offensive guy, my mind is if you go from corner to safety it should be easy, but it's not. There's a transition period for all of those guys and I think Deshazor, Blackmon and even D-Hall went through it before he got injured. I think the more they play, the better they're going to get."