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Rogers: 'I Feel Like I'm Progressing'

Rookie cornerback Carlos Rogers sat down with to discuss his development in the Redskins' defense over the last few games:

Q: How do you feel about your performance starting the last few games?

A: "I feel good about it. There's always something that coaches are telling me I can work on. I feel like I'm progressing and I feel a lot more comfortable out there. I'm not focused on thinking too much out there. I'm reacting more to what the play is when I see it."

Q: How demanding has assistant head coach-defense Gregg Williams been since you've been with the team?

A: "Coach is tough, no matter if we play well or we don't. He's always going to find something. As a coach, he's never satisfied and that's what makes him a great coach. He keeps us working hard and he keeps us on our P's and Q's. He wants us to focus on the things we do wrong because there's always something we can continue to get better at. Those long runs we've been giving up on defense? He keeps saying, 'That's not Redskins football.' Coach has been harping on taking away the long runs. He's going to stay on us and we just have to continue to work hard."

Q: Do you feel the defense is going to play with more of a chip on their shoulder after the last game?

A: "Definitely. We're going to play with a big chip on our shoulder. There's a mandate that we have to stop the run. Offenses are always going to get a play on us here or there, but the 30- and 50-yard plays that we;ve given up--that's not Redskins defense."

Q: Did you gain any confidence from the way you've played the last few weeks?

A: "I've gained a lot of confidence. Games like the one against Denver, how we lost that game, we felt like we've gave the game away. Our effort was great throughout the whole game, but we have to close them. Key things in the game hurt us, like missing the field goal, jumping off-sides, and penalties hurt us. We can't have that and expect to win on the road."

Q: How much has forcing turnovers been a focus in practice?

A: "It's been a big focus. Last year, we had a lot of turnovers. Shawn Springs led the team with sacks and interceptions. That's a big thing for any defense to force turnovers and get the ball back to the offensive side. You have to get the offense on the field and keep the defense off the field and well-rested."

Q: Is forcing turnovers a mentality that the defense needs to develop?

A: "Well, everybody wants to get turnovers. At times, you're not watching the ball, you're focused more on breaking up the pass or going for the tackle. You want to get picks and be aware of batted balls. You want to get your hand in there and strip the ball and force fumbles."

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