Head Coach Jay Gruden
On the development of tackle Morgan Moses and guard Spencer Long:
"They're development is coming along good. We're going to move Morgan to the right side, get him some work on the right side the last two preseason games and Spencer on the right side. Both of them have played the left side pretty well. I've been very impressed with their first two outings in the game situations and we'll see how they do against a very good Baltimore defense and then down in Tampa."
On what he's seen from Long:
"Same. He's been good. He's a solid player. He's still learning the angles in the running game and who to get up to and all that stuff and the passing game, there's the blitz pick-ups and all that. He's doing a good job for being in his first year and this being brand new to him – both of them are. Chris [Foerster] is doing an excellent job with him. It's good that we have some veteran linemen in front of them so they can watch and learn and see how it's done and then they come in and they're able to learn on the fly. Overall, I've been very impressed with both those two kids."
On running back Lache Seastrunk missing practice:
"Yeah, he's OK. He just missed for personal reasons. Something happened in his family."
On defensive end Stephen Bowen and nose tackle Barry Cofield:
"Bowen's out for a while until he gets cleared from the doctors. He's still working individual with the trainers and getting some work in the beginning of practice. Cofield's fine. He did all the team drills today, he'll be OK. He'll be up and ready for Baltimore. "
On cornerback Tracy Porter:
"Tracy Porter's probably going to be out. He's got a hamstring. I'm doubtful with a pulled groin still, if anybody cares [laughter]. "
On if the starters will play into the second half at Baltimore:
"Most likely it'll be halftime. Most likely. Depends on how we're doing. Could change, could go third quarter, could go the whole game, who knows? But, my plan is hopefully get a good solid half out of them – depends on how many plays. If the offense doesn't have as many plays as the defense or vice versa, one group might come out for the third quarter. We'll see how it goes. "
On the process of cutting the roster to 75 players:
"Yeah, it's never easy. Some of them have panned out to be a little bit more clearer than most other cuts will be but it's never easy. You know, you get to know these guys, they work hard, they come to meetings, they're on time, they've done everything right and then when you tell them it's over, it's very tough. So it's never easy. I think some of the position battles have played themselves out where you know it's pretty simple to see but still it's going to be hard to let some of them go."
On the timing of player cuts:
"Right now the plan is they'll be off Sunday and then for practice we'll hopefully get all the cuts done Sunday on the day off."
On punter Tress Way:
"We did a little research on him. He's an Oklahoma good punter and punted some at Chicago here and we just thought we needed another punter in here to see what he could do. We've got the extra spot so why not bring another guy in? And that could be the case quite often throughout the year, depending on how we're doing at the position. Robert 's [Malone] hit some good hits today, so hopefully he continues to maintain his hold on the job, but still, we need to challenge him and make sure we're doing the right thing and doing our due diligence at the position."
On wide receiver Rashad Ross:
"He's a flashy player and he's one of those guys that's taking advantage of his reps and when the ball is in the air, he's gone and got two long ones. So, that's good to see and then the kickoff returns he's had, he's broke a couple. So he's another guy that's in the mix at wide receiver that we have to really take a look at. We've got a number of them that have played pretty well and that's going to be a position that's going to be very difficult on us to get to 75 or the final cut at 53, but he's done nothing wrong. He's done everything we've asked him to do and he's got some explosiveness and obviously the big play ability like you say, so we'll have to wait and see on that."
On if he's decided on quotas for each position:
"No. Those won't be set until after Tampa. We'll have a big discussion – Bruce Allen, myself, the scouts, the coaches – and we'll go from there. And, there's a varying number that could be at a lot of positions, whether it's three or four running backs or five running backs, could be six, seven wideouts, nine linemen, 10 lineman, six D-linemen, 7 D-linemen. We just have to try to do the best we can and pick the best 53 that we think that can help us throughout the season."
On running back Chris Thompson:
"He did individual again today, very similar as yesterday. He looked quick, still a little tentative but we'll see. I think he's going to be a game time deal, we'll see him in pregame warm-up on Saturday and see if he's running around, see how he feels and we'll talk to him and the trainer and go from there. I would say 50/50 right now with him. It could go either way in my opinion."
On if he is leaning toward certain players for the final roster:
"Yeah, you try to not lean. You try to let the players play it out, you let the games take care of themselves and then you try to evaluate after every practice to see who is maintaining their level of play and who is slipping from a day-to-day basis. So I'm just going to leave it up to that. I don't like to predetermine my roster spots at all. I like to let these guys compete. They deserve that right, they've earned that right. It'll be a big game in Baltimore for the starters, not only the backups in the third and fourth quarter but the starters in the first quarter, see how they're doing. And, then of course Tampa will be huge again for a lot of the guys that are competing for the 53."
On if defensive end Stephen Bowen will be ready for the season opener:
"That's hard to say. You know, nothing would surprise me with him. He's been working his tail off in there, but that's going to be totally up to him and Larry [Hess]. I have no idea if he's going to be ready or not. We'll have to wait and see."
On how long Bowen would need to practice to be ready:
"That's a great question. I would like to get him in practice at least right after the fourth preseason game and see how he's doing or close thereabouts before the fourth game, but we'll wait and see. Watching him out there today, he looked better. He looks better than what I've seen him, but I think how he feels after the workout – with the soreness, does it swell up, how he's doing with the more workload that he gets, how he can handle contact – that will be to be determined, but that's something we'll just have to wait and see on, but I'll have to leave that up to Stephen and Larry."
On if the penalties have changed his way of coaching:
"You might change some fundamentals, some techniques by the defensive backs and the linebackers. You know, that's the big one is the defensive holding and illegal contact has been the big ones called. The head bobbing by the quarterback – that's simple to correct. The other ones – the holding by the offensive linemen – those happen all the time. All the other penalties, you just have to continue to coach and coach the fundamentals. That's a major part of football – everybody wants to talk about X's and O's and players, but it comes down to fundamentals a lot to win football games, and if you're not fundamentally sound, you're going to have a lot of penalties and penalties end up costing you. We're not happy with the penalties that we've received, but they were legitimate penalties and something we have to correct and maintain our coaching discipline and making sure our players understand the right and wrong way to play the game."
On where wide receiver Nick Williams fits into the mix at that position:
"I don't know. He's good because he can play multiple spots. Very smart, very reliable guy, a very defined route runner, he's got good hands, very dependable. He's just another guy that has performed well. We have a lot of them, unfortunately – or fortunately, I should say – that are competing, and that's why I think we're doing so well in the third and fourth quarter of games with our quarterbacks. They come in and any one of our receivers can fill in in different spots and make plays. It will be a difficult choice when it comes to choosing the receivers, and Nick is just another one that can play in the NFL, there's no doubt about it, and hopefully it's for us or somebody else. We'll see."
On if he is pleased with the team's improvement with fundamentals this offseason:
"I am. I still think you want to make sure you continue on an upward trend and make sure you don't take any steps backwards. Sometimes I feel like we have those days where people are lethargic and they dismiss the fundamentals of football, and that's why we have a great coaching staff. They stay on them every minute they're out here. They work with them on their pad level, their fundamentals, their hand placements, their drops, or route depths, all that. Very important. That's what the most important job in coaching is – coaching the fundamentals of football. Any coach can draw up plays on a chalkboard, but coaching them to do it the right way is the most important part. Right now, I feel good about where we are from that standpoint; we just have to keep working on them."
On the biggest improvement in Moses' game:
"Confidence and knowledge of the system. That's a big thing when you're not quite sure what to do or how to pass set, you tend to be in the wrong spot or you tend to get beat, but the more you get comfortable with the way we're teaching pass sets and our angles, getting up into the next level of running game, the more confident you are and who you're going to in the pass blocking, and the running game. I think he has enough athleticism to be a very, very good tackle in this league for a long time, it's just a matter of getting him comfortable – left side, right side, with all the calls that changes the protection. He's going to be fine because he's a long, big-bodied kid and he works very hard at it."
On Moses staying low:
"He's doing better. He is really doing good, and that was one of his issues. He's doing a much better job. He hasn't really gotten beat in the preseason games yet. He's doing a good job out here in practice, but it's just a matter – like I said – of getting comfortable with his pass sets and being consistent with his approach on a play-to-play basis, not doing great for three plays and then having, 'Oh, I didn't know what to do on that one.' Those are the ones we have to eliminate, and the beauty of it is, he doesn't have to come right in away and start every game. He can learn, he can learn and then when his time is ready, hopefully he'll be ready to roll."