Head Coach Jay Gruden
On the injury report:
"Limited were Josh Doctson, Achilles; and Kendall Reyes, groin. Full was Matt Jones and Spencer Long. Ty Nsekhe missed today. He did not participate because he has an illness."
On if he expects DE Kendall Reyes to play Monday:
"We're hopeful. We have another couple of days here to figure that out. And he's progressing along nicely and I think tomorrow will tell us a lot. But, I think if he does go, we could go five or six defensive linemen. That will be the tough decision for us."
On his confidence in RB Matt Jones' shoulder:
"Well, he hasn't been hit, you know. One day at practice with a yellow jersey on, for goodness sake. But, today he ran around nice and I don't think he feels it but we'll only find out on Monday night. But he's a tough guy man and the reason why you like him, you like his toughness and I think he can play through a little soreness which a lot of running backs do in the National Football League. It's just a way of life. When you sign up to play running back in the National Football League, you're going to be a little sore, and he will be throughout the season and he's tough enough to deal with it."
On having fewer padded practices:
"We had actually two. You're only allowed to have one padded practice anyway during the week, except for one week you're allowed to have two. We had two this week. So we had Monday and Wednesday were padded, so we did what we're allowed to do."* *
On if this is a different group mentally because of the success from last year:
"I hope so, that is the intent. I think as a pro football player, most players do have confidence but it's another thing, you have to go out and prove it every year. You have to prove it Monday night and you have to prove it the following Sunday and the following Sunday after that and that's never going to change. But having some success is very beneficial to the state of mind and how they prepare and how they work to get ready for a game. They know how hard they worked last year and they saw the benefits of that and that's only going to help us but still, come Monday night and the following Sunday, we've got to go out and prove it each and every week."
On keeping the momentum of the offense going and if they will tweak things or just "do what they did":
"I think a little bit of both you are always trying to expand on what you do and try to not be too predictable offensively. I think the good thing about our team right now, we have the ability to do both, run and pass. And we can pass out of a lot of different formations. Our playactions are great off running formations so we are always going to be diverse in what we do and try to do that. We're very cognizant of our self-scout and not be too predictable. Good defensive coaches like Pittsburgh and Dallas and the New York Giants that they have, Philadelphia, these teams that we play, they will exploit you if you are predictable and that's our goal is not be predictable but sometimes the simpler plays are always the best and we have to always continue to do what we do well."
On if QB Kirk Cousins is feeling more pressure because of his new contract:
"I don't think so. I've said this before, the quarterback position has the greatest amount of pressure no matter what the contract situation is. It's Monday Night Football. He's leading a group of men out here that are working extremely hard and there is great pressure on him no matter what. Personally, he might feel a little bit more, I don't know. You'd have to ask him. This position, it takes great preparation and a ton of work put in and he's put in the work and the preparation so he should feel confident. I've always said, 'You don't feel pressure, you apply it.' And that's the only way you have to think at the quarterback position."
Offensive Coordinator Sean McVay
On the challenges of the Pittsburgh defense:
"You mentioned it. A lot of respect for this coaching staff and what their personnel presents on defense. I think Coach [Keith] Butler does a great job mixing it up. When their base defense is out there, they've got great players on the edge. They've got two inside linebackers that can run as well as anybody, and I think their secondary is very versatile. I think the safety [Mike] Mitchell does a great job. So, they present a lot of challenges and they mix it up extremely well in nickel, from a coverage standpoint, from some of the exotic looks that you're seeing from the back end when they pressure you. So, it's going to be a great challenge for us and we've got a lot of respect for this defense."
On the young Pittsburgh secondary and if they can take advantage of it:
"You know, we're more worried about executing to the best of our ability. Not exactly sure what Coach Butler is going to present. They do a great job mixing it up, and like you mentioned, having a couple of new guys in certain situations, in spots that we're not exactly sure where they'll be, will present some challenges for us. So, we've got to be ready to adjust accordingly and play our type of game."
On how the running backs' snaps will be split:
"I think it's something that we'll see how the game goes. Coach [Randy] Jordan does a great job getting a flow and a feel for the game in terms of how those guys are going. So how we're moving the football will dictate who's playing and what certain situations those guys are playing in. We're hopeful that Matt [Jones] will stay healthy but I think you'll see a good rotation of all three of those guys."
On if he speaks with Running Backs Coach Randy Jordan about the rotation during the game:
"I think it's something that he does a great job of understanding. We talk throughout the course of the week if there's a certain play that we might want to have Chris Thompson get, or [Robert] Kelley get, or Matt [Jones], we always have communicated that ahead of time. If it's something that we anticipate getting to, we're talking about that on the headset beforehand. If a guy's in a rhythm—Coach Jordan having played the position for as long as he did—kind of has a feel for when a guy's hot and he kind of lets those guys roll."
On the importance of establishing the run despite having a strong receiving corps:
"Absolutely. It's very important for us to be a balanced offense. When you can stay in normal down-and-distances, when you have run-pass options, you're able to keep the defense off-balance and that's definitely something that we always strive to do. Ultimately we're going to try and attack what they're presenting and what we feel like gives us the best way to move the football. Being able to run the football efficiently and being able to control the clock is going to be very important for us to have a chance to win on Monday."
On what WR Josh Doctson's role will be:
"I think that's to be determined. He's done a great job this week. [We've] been very encouraged by what we've seen from him. Like we've mentioned already, we have a lot of confidence in those receivers that have been here and have been productive. I think it's going to be one of those situations that we monitor each and every week, and the more that he shows he's capable of handling, then I think the more opportunities he'll get."