Quarterback Colt McCoy
On his reaction to starting this week:
"My reaction was I just always prepare myself to play, and obviously it's the coaches' decision. I was in the building Monday and Tuesday preparing just like I would if I was the starter or wasn't the starter watching the same tape. So, Jay [Gruden] talked to me and I know this is a significant decision for our team. I understand that. Moving forward, I just want to go out there and play the best I can, help our team as much as I can, try to find a way to win some games."
On what he offers Head Coach Jay Gruden that makes him a better option at quarterback:
"I don't want to get into, 'Who's better? Who's not?' For me, as a quarterback, I think Jay expects us to make the right decisions with the football, get us in the right plays when he asks us to get us in those plays versus blitz, versus different coverages that we see, go to the right place with the football – just make good decisions. The way I approach it, we have great receivers, we have great tight ends, good running backs. Our running game has picked up over the last few weeks, which I think is a big positive for us. I just want to go out there and distribute the football, be smart and score points."
On how tough it is to prepare week after week:
"Yeah, I just try to approach it one day at a time, get some timing and rhythm down with the receivers, the wideouts, make sure our protections are right, my calls are right from the line of scrimmage – getting the linemen used to my cadence again. There're just little things like that I think throughout the week guys get used to. Maybe a little rusty today, probably be a little rusty tomorrow, but hopefully by game time we've nailed down enough of our game plan to understand each other, where we're going to be and give our best effort on Sunday."
On if he has spoken to Robert Griffin III following the decision this week:
"I've talked to Robert. Robert's a pro. He's done a great job. That's a hard decision, and it's just a hard thing. He's handled it great and been a great teammate. I didn't expect anything less from him. He's been great all year long. I think the thing for me is, before the Tennessee game, I never had a rep with these guys. So, it took some adjustment for them to figure out the way that I play, the way I stand in the pocket, the way I move, the things that I see. So, I think the big adjustment will be – after sitting for three or four weeks like I have – if we can pick that back up and move forward. It's unfortunate that we're 3-8, but I think this team still believes in each other. Defense played great last week, our run game was good last week. If we can put it all together, we feel like we have a chance against anybody. I think that's the key for us. Can we come together as a unit? Can we score some points on offense? Moving forward, let's just move forward as one, and our goal is simple – it's to win games."
On if the team looks at him differently since his performance as a starter earlier in the season:
"I think my teammates have responded well. I know they're confident in me. I just have to go out there and play smart football, do what I'm coached to do, get the ball in the receivers' hands, hopefully get our running game going early, and I'm taking it one day at a time. I'm not thinking about tomorrow or the next day. Just focus on my approach, focus on being confident, figuring out what I have to do to get myself prepared to play Sunday."
On how he handled the news that he would not continue to start after the win against Dallas:
"I don't know if I was 'benched,' per se, more so than I understood my role. I understood my role when I came here as the No. 3. I know the things that I've been through thorough my career. I'm probably as thankful and appreciative as anybody to be playing on the field again. So, I think for me, my approach just needs to be the same that it's been since the day that I got here, and that's understanding what Jay wants within our offense, within our quarterback play and where he wants us to go with the football – being smart, being confident, being a leader, all those things. I've tried to just be the same guy in the building every day and that's not going to change."
On how hard it is to not look past the next game and not look at the big picture:
"Yeah, it's not that hard. It's really not. My approach is the same. Last week when we were going into the 49ers game, as it is this week, I'm just taking reps, because as a backup, you always have to be prepared to go into a game and help your team win. So, again, I'm doing my best to make my focus, make my approach one day at a time – not worrying about the things going on around me, the distractions. I'm kind of staying in my three-foot world and that's the way I'm going to keep approaching it."
On if he would feel better if there was a firm declaration that he was starting for the rest of the season:
"Obviously, that's a coaches' decision and an organizational decision. It's way beyond my pay grade. For me, I know I'm starting this week. I'll do everything that I can to be prepared for that."
On if he had an inclination that he might start when he arrived yesterday:
"I didn't know. And again, that's not my decision. I just think that I can go back to whenever I stopped playing against Dallas and I became the backup again – Robert was playing. You gain some confidence from a game like that. You gain some confidence from the game before that coming off the bench. So, I guess my approach has been a little bit different since then as far as seeing things, understanding what we want to do offensively. So, I've really kept my mind in the game even though I wasn't playing. Jay told me to always be ready. That was my job. So, I don't guess that I knew that this change was going to happen. I just always prepared for whatever comes of it."
On if he feels more confident that he can be successful after the success he had earlier this year:
"I've grown up a lot. I've learned a lot from some of the experiences I have had. I think the biggest thing is, I just trust in my teammates. I trust the offensive line – they're going to do their job. We have great receivers who are capable of doing tremendous things when the ball is in their hands. Our running back is running well. Our run game has picked up. I'm confident in all the guys around me. I just want to go out there and compete as best I can and hopefully find a way to win."
On advice he would give Griffin III after having been in a similar situation earlier in his career:
"Yeah, Robert and I hadn't specifically talked about that, but if that moment comes we'll be fine. We're good friends, and again, he's handled it tremendously – in the building, at practice, all those things. He's been a true pro. He knows that he has a strong faith, that he is pretty grounded. He's confident in his ability, and he will get another opportunity."
On what his words of advice to Griffin III would be:
"It would be something along those lines. Continue to work on your game, continue to improve. In my case, you never know when the opportunity is going to come up again where you're going to go out and play and be counted on. So, don't get discouraged and continue to compete. But again, Robert has a strong faith. He's very confident. So, I assume that's the way he's approaching it already."
On how he has grown as a player and person during his career:
"I accept all the responsibility of my past and the first couple years of my career. We didn't win games, and unfortunately, I lost my job because of it. I accept that. But I've also learned from that. I've grown up. I've watched good quarterbacks play. I truly feel like I'm in a place where I can be successful with the offense that we run. We've got good players around me, and again I'm not focused on what's going to happen now. My focus is literally on today – getting better today, focusing on our game plan. You know, I think that'll be my approach as the rest of the season goes on, just take it one week at a time, play your best and figure out a way to get this team rolling again."