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Quotes: Jay Gruden (10.19.15)

Head Coach Jay Gruden

Opening statement:

"Update on injuries in the game: Trenton Robinson, ankle sprain, he'll be day to day. Chris Thompson has a low-back contusion, he'll be day to day. [Bashaud] Breeland had a knee contusion, day to day. [Ty] Nsekhe had the plantar fasciitis, day to day. And then we just have some other bumps and bruises we'll monitor."

On evaluating QB Kirk Cousins' performance after watching film:

"You know, it was a tough day for all of us at the office. He had some throws that didn't come out the way he wanted them to and the production wasn't there by the offense in general. But Kirk himself needs to play better, and he's getting better and he will play better. But it's our job as coaches to make it as easy on him as possible and we didn't do that. We were forced into tough situations there late in the third quarter, early fourth quarter. A lot of pressure was on him. He didn't live up to the standards that we set but we didn't make it any easier on him. So moving forward, man, we've just got to do a better job all together as a football team and as a staff to make everybody better."

On if he sees improvements in Cousins:

"Yeah, I do. Over the course of the game and over the course of these six games that we've played, he's made some good decisions and some great throws. You know, we tend to reflect on the negative ones and he's had a few. There have been a few, but there have been a few in just about every quarterback that has played this year. We're just trying to coach off the things that he has struggled with, hopefully learn from them, and then we just continue to progress to the next opponent, which will be Tampa Bay."

On if has given any consideration to making a change at quarterback:

"No, no. You know, we're 2-4 right now. We were 0-1 and then we had a nice victory, and then we lost to the Giants. We had a nice victory against the Eagles and we took two steps back here the last couple weeks to 2-4. We've got another game against Tampa Bay – big, huge game for us, then we've got a bye week. Then, we'll go from there, but I'm not looking to make any drastic changes right now. I have faith in all the players that are playing and we'll get this thing turned around."

On what he meant by referring to this week's game as a 'Code Red' situation:

"Well, they're all important games but this is big. We're getting backed into a corner right now and everybody's taking their shots at us right now and we can either come out swinging or we can take it. I hope that we all come out swinging. I have faith that the competitive group that I have in the locker room — the coaches and the players, myself — will come out swinging and give it our best shot to get this thing turned around and get some positive thinking going on during our bye week and come back fresh and healthy after the bye."

On if QB Robert Griffin III's contract is an 'obstacle' to potentially playing him in games:

"That's not an obstacle for me. For my line of thought, my line of thinking, no. We're just going to play with the guys that we think are starters, coach them up and then the other guys will get ready to play when they're asked to play."

On how long it takes to get a good feel for a quarterback's ability:

"That's a great question and hopefully that'll be answered here in the next few weeks, in the next five, six, seven, eight games. But I don't want to judge a quarterback based on yesterday's game. I think he's done some good things in this season to warrant him some consideration to be a starting quarterback in the National Football League for some time. Let's see how he progresses, let's see what happens here at the end of the year and go from there. I have all the confidence in the world still in Kirk and I think he's done some good things. I know his teammates still have confidence in him and that's the only thing that's important to me."

On the struggles in the running game:

"Like I said before, it's a combination of a lot of things and it just hasn't been good enough. Our run blocking hasn't been good enough, our recognition of where the holes are at times hasn't been good enough. We've haven't broken many tackles. So we've got to stick with it. We've got to stick with the plan and before the season started, that was going to be a heavy, major emphasis on how we were going to be successful is to have a good, strong running game. That has not been the case the last couple of weeks; hence we've lost the last two games. So, we've got to get back to where we want to get and that's running the football and getting better at it. That's everybody – tight ends, backs, receivers even, and of course offensive line."

On if DE Stephen Paea not playing yesterday was related to his back injury:

"Yes, his back. He was injured."

On the struggles of the run defense:

"You know, again, it's kind of like your run offense. There's somebody different on every play. Sometimes it's a linebacker losing the gap. Sometimes it's a three-technique not spiking inside. Sometimes it's a corner not playing the D-gap. There's a lot of variances into why a running play is successful for an offense against our defense and that's been the case. We've just have to make sure we keep coaching our gap security, get off blocks, pursue to the football and then make plays. I faith that our defense will do that this week."

On why the team is not featuring play-action more:

"We love the play-action passing game, but the problem is if you're not running the ball very good then play-action is not very good on second and 11. We haven't gotten a lot of good rhythm-type drives where we have the good runs and the play-actions and that's when we're most successful. That's when most teams are most successful. We've been too one-sided the last couple of weeks, which really takes away from Kirk's strengths and that's obviously the pass-action pass. He's very good at play-action, very good at bootlegs and we've just haven't been able to utilize them. Some of it is because of the way the Jets play their defense. Their edges was secure, they were tight on the inside and it was hard to get the bootlegs off. It's something that we have to get back to doing – running the ball, getting our play-actions, our boots, getting him comfortable, getting him outside the pocket. And then when he has to throw, you know, we've got to do a better job."

On fullback Darrel Young:

"You know, we could use him more. We probably should use him more, and that's a consideration moving forward."

On WR DeSean Jackson traveling on his own to New York:

"He had some family in town. He wasn't originally going to travel and then he wanted to get some extra work with the trainers on game day before the game. So he came up himself with his cousin or something like that. It was good to see him. I'm glad he came up to support his teammates."

On saying last week that Jackson would 'definitely' be ready to play against Tampa Bay:

"That was before he tweaked his hamstring on Thursday. I think we'll see how he does. We're going to evaluate him this week. He's got a couple good days of rehab here. Wednesday we'll see where he is at. Hopefully it's coming along. But it's not a definite, no."

On if there is value to playing Jackson at less than 100 percent:

"Well, that would be great, but the problem is you put him out there at 80 percent and then he tries to go 100 and then he's going to be back down to 30 percent just like that. These hamstrings are delicate. There's a lot of guys out in the NFL going through the same thing. You have to get that thing back to 100 percent before you go, otherwise it'll get worse."

On the statuses of CB Chris Culliver, C Kory Lichtensteiger, TE Jordan Reed and T Trent Williams:

"We're going to address them on Wednesday. They are all improving. As far as the concussions protocols and all that, they're going to go through their exams and their treatments and all that good stuff. Same with Kory. So we'll give you an update on Wednesday."

On if he is cognizant of how he explains plays without trying to sound like he is making excuses:

"Yeah, probably. I talk too much. I'm not trying to make excuses for anybody. It wasn't good enough by anybody – not Kirk, not myself, not the offensive line, not the coaching staff. There was nobody in this locker room that played good enough to win a football game on Sunday afternoon. I'm not making excuses for anybody. I'm not trying to baby anybody. I'm trying to get our team ready to play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers moving forward and get this thing back on the right track."

On his belief that Cousins gives them the best chance to win:

"I just feel like that right now at this time. I feel like Kirk gives us the best chance to win still. I want to see him fight through this. That's going to be the making of a strong person, a strong football player. How they react to some tough times and how they improve. I'm excited to see him bounce back and have a big bounce-back game this week and the coming weeks. We'll see how it goes."

On what gives him confidence in Cousins:

"I've seen him throw the ball out here many, many times. I've seen him make every throw there is to make in pro football. We've just got to get his confidence going. We've got to help him. Players have got to help him around him and we've got to do a better job coaching him. I've seen him do it and I know he can do it."

On how he plans to address the team's play in third quarters:

"That's something we're going to talk about as a staff here as soon as I get done here. We have a meeting at 4:00. We'll talk about things moving forward, how we can change things and make it better, make our team better, make our staff better and be better prepared in the third quarter, but obviously whatever we're doing has not been good enough."

On if he was unhappy with WR Pierre Garçon's play and/or his lack of touches in the second half:

"I wasn't unhappy with Pierre's play, no. I was unhappy with the play of our offense in general and the way we called the plays, yes. The production wasn't there. If you're not playing right, then nobody's going to look good and nobody did look good. We had a two-play-drive interception, three-and-out punt, another three-and-out punt and next thing you know, we're down by three touchdowns. Then it was catch up. It was garbage ball after that. We tried to make a quick comeback there at the end after the blocked punt, almost got the onside kick, would have made things interesting but didn't work out."

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