Head Coach Jay Gruden
[To Media] "Alrighty, this is… small turnout today. What's going on?"
"Did not participate were [Jamison] Crowder, ankle; [Chris] Thompson, rib and [Trent] Williams, thumb. Limited were [Shawn] Lauvao, calf; [Adrian] Peterson, shoulder; [Paul] Richardson, shoulder and knee; [Montae] Nicholson, neck and hip; [Kapri] Bibbs, shoulder and [Ryan] Anderson, knee."
On if CB Quinton Dunbar was a full participant at practice:
"Yes, he was."
On what DNP players will be out Sunday:
"[Jamison] Crowder for sure. He'll be out."
On if WR Jamison Crowder is not as far along as he hoped:
"He's coming along. This is just a tough injury with the ligament and all that stuff. We don't want to push it until he feels like he's with the trainers and the strength staff and he's cutting at full speed. We don't want to put him out there when he's 75 percent. There's no point."
On if his reasoning has to do with the bye week already being over:
"No, no. I manage players the same. We wait until they're healthy and get them out there."
On if the talent on the Atlanta Falcons offense affects his play calling:
"I don't know. I've never coached in their offense. I'd like to think we're pretty talented also. I don't know. I think it depends on the week and who you're playing. I don't know. Why don't you ask their offensive coordinator?"
On if RB Chris Thompson's injury is long-term and if RB Byron Marshall will be brought up this week:
"We're not bringing up Byron this week. He can't come up this week. He's practicing this week but possibly next week we could bring him up. Yeah, I mean, anytime you have a rib [injury] like that it's a painful deal especially for the things that he (Chris Thompson) has to do – running the football, protecting and catching the ball. We're going to give him a little bit of time, make sure he's ready to roll and he can have all his movement and flexibility and can run out there without pain because it is a tough injury for a running back or for anybody for that matter."
On CB Quinton Dunbar playing Sunday and how that will impact CB Josh Norman:
"Dunbar? He did good today. I mean he's full today so I have every indication in my mind that he's going to play barring a setback. Again, we'll keep close tabs with the trainer and talk to Quinton and see how he's doing. Like I said, barring a setback, I'd imagine he'll play. As far as how we matchup with the receivers, we'll see how it goes. I think they have so many good weapons with [Calvin] Ridley on one side and Julio [Jones] on the other side. I don't think it really matters. Both of them are pretty dang good. Ridley's a first-rounder. Obviously, Julio is Julio. If we choose to match, we match. If we don't, both of them are going to have to strap it up and cover one heck of a player."
On what goes into the decision to move Norman and Dunbar around:
"Well, it depends on the game, the person, the scheme, what coverages we're playing. If you're playing a lot of two shell, you don't really move them around a lot. If you're playing a lot of single safety stuff, you might want to move them around. Let Josh compete against the best – the guy who they might throw it to or target the most. If that's the case this week, they could be the same. But with 'Dunny', the way he's playing or was playing before he got hurt, we may not have to do that. We can leave him right and left and let him be comfortable and cover equally two pretty good receivers. A lot goes into the decision, coverages, who you're playing against and who's on the field with you."
On S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix's progress today:
"He did good. It was good to get Montae [Nicholson] out there, did a lot more today also. So, it's good to have all three of those guys out there and obviously 'Shaze' [Deshazor Everett] and [Kenny] Ladler. It's just a matter of getting them comfortable in a personnel group and letting him learn and go from there. He's back there with Torrian [Defensive Backs Coach Torrian Gray] the whole time he's not in there talking about the calls and the adjustments we have to make. He is a very bright guy and I think he's going to pick it up very quickly. He already has, so he's doing good."
On the differences in the defensive schemes from team to team:
"It can be quite different really. For safeties, Cover 2 is Cover 2, probably, but there are some adjustments. There's a lot of…could be possible double calls in certain offenses based on the halfback, based on three by one, two by two adjustments you might make from a coverage standpoint. That's something we just have to make sure that he can handle communicating with whoever he's in there with, with D.J. [Swearinger] or Montae [Nicholson]. That's the big thing – alignment, assignment, all that. Just have to pick up the terminology but he's doing a good job so far."
On the red zone offense this year:
"I think it has to improve. We've missed some great opportunities, man, some really good ones. It's not easy down there. Defenses, they have great options. They can Cover 0 you. They can show Cover 0, drop eight. They can play two deep, three deep and it gets all packed in down there and windows are very tight. You have to be very accurate and anticipate throws. You have to win your one-on-one matchups when you do get man. We do have some improvement to do in the red zone area. We have the guys that can win in the man-to-man. Then, it's our job to find the holes in zone – might have to buy some time if they drop eight guys and work some scramble drills."
On if the red zone improvement is a matter of QB Alex Smith getting more comfortable:
"Yeah, probably and it's play dependent and play related. What play is good versus what coverages. We try to help him out and try to match it up, but sometimes we don't get the coverages we anticipate and we have to ad lib a little bit. He's been very good as far as protecting the football, which is good. You want to come out of there with seven obviously, but Hop [Dustin Hopkins] is kicking the ball very well. We're playing good defense. Most important thing is to at least get points and we've done that pretty much every time."
On T Trent Williams:
"Trent went to see a specialist in Pittsburgh and we'll see how that went."
On if Williams went to the specialist for an evaluation:
"That and see if he might need to have something done so we'll see. We're anxiously awaiting that word. Don't text me and ask me what the word is please."
Defensive Coordinator Greg Manusky
On S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and getting him up to speed:
"Well that's the biggest thing, I think he's a professional of course, it's great to have him on our team. It's an individual that came from somewhat of a similar background, so I think the calls and stuff will relate over a little bit. But that's the biggest thing, is trying to get him get up to speed with the defenses that we have. That might be a little different than what he did but overall he's doing a good job."
On the difficulty of getting a new player adjusted to the defense:
"Well, I think it takes a couple of weeks. I think overall, an individual that doesn't know all the calls; I know he (Ha Ha Clinton-Dix) knows a fire zone concept. He knows Cover-3. He knows Cover-2 but every team is different. So overall, his knowledge of the game is very good, so I think he's going to have a chance to probably play a little bit this week and we'll see from there."
On putting three safeties on the field with Clinton-Dix, D.J. Swearinger Sr. and Montae Nicholson:
"Of course, you know when you get individuals like that, he's a Pro Bowl guy (Ha Ha Clinton-Dix); he came from Alabama. He understands defenses. He goes out there and he performs at a high fashion. To have those three guys in situations like that would be great to have, so we're lucky and fortunate to have him."
On Nicholson's role moving forward:
"Right now we're just judging and weighing what we have right now. Based upon that, he's (Clinton-Dix) been here for two days right now so just trying to figure out what he knows and how he knows it and then try to plug him in and hopefully he'll be in a situation where he plays a little bit."
On judging when a new player is up to speed:
"I don't think there's a test. I think overall just talking to the individual and understanding what he does. From a DB perspective, I rely on the DB coaches. Does he understand the concepts we have? And pretty much, there are not 1,000 concepts. But overall, he is a very knowledgeable football player. He understands concepts, so we'll see from there."
On the Atlanta Falcon offense:
"I think overall you can see a lot of speed showing up across the board with the receivers that they have and with [Devonta] Freeman down, what happens is those other guys get an opportunity to really fly down the field. They can run. They have some speed, so we've got to make sure we match them up."
On what stands out about his run defense:
"You know, we're playing physical up front. I think the guys that we picked up in the draft in Jonathan [Allen] and Matt [Ioannidis] and all the guys up front, Preston [Smith] setting an edge and [Ryan] Kerrigan and overall, they've been doing a good job. I don't know where we're ranked or anything, but we've just got to make sure we stop the run, make them one-dimensional and put them in a passing situation."