Washington Commanders head coach Ron Rivera addressed the media after practice on Aug. 14. Here is a full transcript of the press conference.
On OL Sam Cosmi's Injury:
"He hyper extended it. He went back out and finished practice. It sounded like he had hyperextended it, he had his leg locked out and somebody hit the kneecap from what I'm being told. So far, everything seems to be good. He went back and finished practice."
On who will practice in Baltimore:
"We will see, we'll get the medical update after today. We had a couple guys that we were holding out of practice today just to be careful with them. We'll see how they are tonight and tomorrow going into practice before we decide definitively who will and who won't practice."
On CB Benjamin St.-Juste injury:
"He's got a little tweak on his ankle and obviously a guy that runs a lot, you don't want to get out there and exacerbate the injury. We just wanted to be smart, see how he is. We slowed him down yesterday. Today, we just kept him out."
On RB Antonio Gibson limping out of practice:
"Nope. Got no idea there."
On TE Logan Thomas injury update:
"At this point, this is caution. He's a little bit older, veteran guy, a guy that's coming back and we just want to be careful with him. Maybe we're being overly cautious, but at the end of the day, the most important thing is the guy's ready to play when we open up the season."
On if age and experience factor into caution with Thomas:
"Yes, it does. Especially a guy in his position that's so important for us. It wouldn't do us any good to get him out there a little too early and all of a sudden that injury flares up again. So for the most part, we just want to be cautious. We want to want to take our time with an aged veteran like that."
On what he saw from the offensive line after watching film against Cleveland:
"I thought there were things that were better than people anticipated and then there were some things that we have to sure up. The nice thing is those incidents and mistakes, those are all correctable. Those are technique things more than they are anything else. I thought schematically, they handled all that pretty well. I think individually there are some things that do need to be sured up for sure."
On who will get the last roster spots at wide receiver:
"I think it's really going to be about fit. The guys that we're going to keep really most certainly fit the needs that we have. We got a couple guys that are nice size receivers that run well, very good on special teams and that's going to be one of the factors as well. Some position flex, we got a couple guys that can play all three of the wide receiver positions. Those are the guys that you also will take into big consideration. Special teams most certainly is a consideration."
On concerns about CB Emmanuel Forbes size after making a goal line tackle in Cleveland:
"I think the biggest thing more anything else is he doesn't play to that size. He plays fast, he plays with his hands, plays with his eyes. He came in and took a nice angle and got himself in on the tackle. He's going to go out and do what he's done. He played in the SEC and he played there for three good years and did some really good things."
On Assistant Offensive Line Coach Travelle Wharton's injury:
"Travelle threw his back out and he's recovering right now so hopefully he'll be back soon. It's a back, it's always a tricky thing. He had surgery to correct it and it was a minor procedure so he's going to miss a couple days and should be back. He probably will not be in Baltimore."
On how DE Montez Sweat has looked in camp:
"He's looked good. He really has. He's the guy that's got some great explosion, play speed and quickness. You see it flare up when he's focused in and ready to roll. You see some really good reps. You see some good flashes of what his abilities really are. It's good to see him moving around and flying around. It's one of those things that you just know he is ready to take that next step a lot. It's very similar to what we saw last year with [DT] Daron Payne."
On talking to the team about the approach in Baltimore practices:
"Absolutely. I already did. That's what I did right there. I said, hey, next time we're on the practice field, it's going to be this, it's going to be competitive. We're not there to beat anybody up. We're there to play against somebody and learn and grow and develop and I was very direct about that. I'm going to be very direct in the next couple meetings that we have leading right up to practice. We don't want to go around and bullshit. We want to come, we want to get around, we want to learn, we want to grow, we want to be able to work our offense and defense and special teams against a very good football team, very well coached football team. That's pretty much been one of the standards probably the last 14 years since [Baltimore Ravens Head Coach] John Harbaugh arrived on the scene. So, we all can learn something from those guys and that's the approach I want everybody taking."
On what players or groups need to be pushed harder in the next few days:
"I think all of them, we're not doing this for any position specific, we're doing this for everybody. Now do I want to see some specific groups, you know, step it up, be better than they were the other night? Absolutely. Absolutely and some individuals as well, because it'd be a good chance to develop because, you know, other than watching 'em on tape, we haven't practiced against 'em. We haven't played against them yet. So, we'll have tape from their game the other night. But the biggest thing our guys got to understand is that this is a chance to do a little studying, a little preparing, and then going out there and competing against a very good football team."
On the comparison between his two Assistant Head Coaches Assistant Head Coach/ Offensive Coordinator Eric Bieniemy and San Fransisco 49ers Defensive Coordinator Steve Wilkes:
"It was a little bit different from what I had in Carolina because Coach Wilkes wasn't the primary play caller on defense and so Steve handled a few more things that Coach Bieniemy is not. But on the inverse, Coach Bieniemy is handling a few more things that Coach Wilkes didn't and one of those things primarily has been the scheduling and scripting of practice. That's one of the things that as a head coach, you really do dive into and really get a really good feel for what's going on with the team and how you see it with Eric. You see that, you know, he's doing things, he's changed some of the things that we've done in the past and that's fine because it goes right along with what he said about let's be comfortable when we're uncomfortable. So we've changed some things with that in mind, knowing that it's going to be uncomfortable, these are going to be different. But it's helped us. The things we did the other night as far as our last walkthrough practice, we scripted it accordingly to the way he saw it and it was different. A couple bumps, but as we smooth it out, I can see exactly where he is going with that and what he's trying to do, what he's trying to accomplish. It's been a good experience I think for him and it's one of the things that, eventually when he gets his opportunity to be head coach, that he most certainly I think will do his way and will appreciate having had the chance to already take a look at it and see what works and what doesn't work."
On Eric Bieniemy's role as a chance for development:
"Absolutely, a little bit of mentoring there. I think giving him those responsibilities also gives him some practical application to it as well."
On Sam Cosmi's injury:
"Yeah, it looked like he got it hyperextended. It was straight when he got bumped, somebody rolled into him I think, and so they let it calm down on the side. They checked him and put a sleeve on and he went back out there and didn't seem to have a problem. I was watching him near the end just to make sure he looked good, and he sure did, he moved around pretty well."
On if injured players are traveling to Baltimore:
"They should go with Baltimore. Our trainers will be there. They have the facility there that they're allowing us to use some of it and so we can get our guys trained there and at the same time, they can still go to meetings, still go to practice, see what's going on. So, unless the guy should not be walking, we should have everybody there."