Press Conference: Washington Redskins coach Jay Gruden

redskins-helmetWashingon Redskins head coach Jay Gruden

On cornerback DeAngelo Hall:

“DeAngelo did a somersault and landed on his back and bruised his back. He is walking around a little bit better today, just a little sore. I don’t imagine it [his recovery time] being very long.”

 

On when he expects wide receiver DeSean Jackson to return:

“I expect him back very soon. He’s running individual routes already, and he looks fine doing that. He’s just is going to continue doing individual. He’s doing some extra running after practice, but full-speed cutting we’re going to hold off probably another day or two and then get him back into full-go action. Hopefully, he’ll be ready by Monday night.”

 

On running back Lache Seastrunk practicing hurt in an attempt to make the final roster:

“It’s important for these guys to play through the nagging injuries. Obviously ones that keep them out, we don’t want to do a lot of damage to. Everybody’s got some kind of bump or bruise right now I would imagine, and if you can play through it, it’s great. He has played through a sore foot for the last couple of days, might be a week. But, he’s not on the injury report so I’ll imagine he’ll be full-go again tomorrow.”

 

On when Hall got injured:

“It was in individuals. We were doing one-on-ones in the red zone, and Andre [Roberts] caught a fade, and he went for the ball then just did a somersault and landed on his back kind of awkwardly, so to speak. He just got up a little sore. They carted him off just for the dramatic exit. He could have walked off – would have made it a lot easier on me today.”

 

On linebacker Darryl Sharpton, linebacker Brian Orakpo and running back Silas Redd:

“Sharpton’s probably got the worst – he’s got the high-ankle sprain. He’s probably going to be the longest. Orakpo has just a thigh contusion. He’s going to be fine. We just kept him out today to give him a break… Silas Redd has a minor ankle sprain, and he will be ready hopefully tomorrow, maybe the next day. We will see how he’s doing.”

 

On running back Chris Thompson’s injury history and missing reps today:

“It’s disappointing. It’s unfortunate for him because he was progressing very well and he needs the reps to do what we’re going to ask him to do on game day. And if he’s not available to get these reps, it’s going to hurt his progress. Injuries happen, unfortunately to him it seems like more often than not. He’s got to figure out a way to stay healthy, but his is a low ankle sprain and it probably will be another five to six days, I would think, just a matter of how quickly it heals. You never know. But he’s got to get back on the field, there’s no question about it. He is in a tight battle.”

 

On Seastrunk’s development as a pass catcher:

“He’s doing OK in that department. The major thing that he has to work on is pass blocking. He’s good out of the backfield, he’s got decent hands, he obviously can run the ball, he’s very fast. But as far as just fundamentals of running backs are concerned, he’s a little bit behind the 8-ball as far as his footwork, his blitz pickups, some of his route definition – a little sloppy right now. [It’s] just he hasn’t been asked to do that at Baylor. This is the first time he’s been asked to do that. Randy [Jordan] is doing a good job with him of being very patient, and he’s coming along at a slower pace than I would probably like him to come along, but he’s working very hard at it. Hopefully, you know we have three preseason games left that he’ll be able to show us that he can handle some of these blitz pickups in practice and in games.”

 

On the risk and reward of trying to pass players through to the practice squad:

“Yeah, it’s tough. That’s something that we’ll have to talk about as a staff – the risk/reward situation. A lot of teams, when teams make their final cuts, a lot of teams are in the same boat. They’re in the same predicament. You know, when you poach somebody, you’ve got to put them right on your active roster, then you’re playing a regular season game and sometimes it’s not always easy to do. We’ve just got to hope the fact that our 53 guys that we have active are the ones that we want and we’re able to keep the practice squad guys and develop them for this year, later in the year. A lot of times they get activated or next year, like you’re saying, so, you know, that’s a calculated risk, but it’s one we have to take. We don’t have a choice.”

 

On wanting to get safety Phillip Thomas back on the field but not wanting to injure him further:

“You’re exactly right. It’s a slippery slope, you know? You push them out there, you get out there too quick, you re-injure the hamstring and now you’re in the same boat or worse. So it’s important for Phillip to get this thing 100 percent healthy and he’s got to show us what he can do. There’s no doubt he’s a lot of the same lines as Chris Thompson. They have promise and we’re excited about what they can do, but we’ve got to see it. We can’t see it if they’re hurt all the time, so injuries happen, like I said. We understand that, but we’ve got to figure out a way to get them healthy and get them out on the field as soon as possible so they can show us.”

 

On yelling at the wide receivers today during practice:

“I yelled a lot today. [Laughs]. Receivers, quarterbacks, linemen, defensive linemen, we had a couple false starts today. It wasn’t [one of] the most crisp practices I’ve ever seen, but yeah, nothing really specific. The receivers might have been blocking, might have been a sloppy route. They dropped a couple balls today and dropped a couple yesterday, so just trying to clean it up, man, keep everybody on the same page, moving forward.”

 

On struggling in the two-minute offense on occasion:

“It’s a little bit of everything. There’s some good pass rush, our protection might be a little unsound, so to speak. It could be a poor read by the quarterback or a poor route, like we talked about. There’s a lot that goes into a two-minute offense. The tempo has been fine. I think the communication has been fine. It’s just the execution hasn’t been that great. We have to continue to do it. We are going to do two-minute every day until Houston, until we start to master it. We just started it four or five days ago, so we are still pretty new to the process. Plus, Pierre [Garçon] and DeSean [Jackson], we have a lot of guys that are out, too.”

 

On if one performance in a practice or game can sway his judgment on a player on the roster bubble:

“You have to measure it. Some performances are more important than the others. A performance on game day might look more important than a Tuesday afternoon practice. You can’t discount what they do during practice if they play poorly in a game. You have to try to measure it, like you’re saying. Look at the total package, the total thing that they put together, the total body of work. That something we have to judge – what the future might be, how much better they are going to get. Are they going to get bigger? Are they going to get stronger? How fast they learn. There’s a lot of things that go into making our final decision. Performance on this field speaks volumes.”

 

On naming Adam Hayward as the special teams captain for the first preseason game:

“Well, when you have a special teams coach like Coach [Ben] Kotwica and we are trying to preach the importance of special teams, it’s very important to have players that buy in. Nobody buys in more than Adam. He is a great leader. He makes everybody accountable on the unit. It’s one thing having coaches yell at you all the time but it’s another to have players hold players accountable. That’s what he does and that’s what he is great at. He’s obviously a great special teams player – that’s well-proven and well-documented. But his leadership on that unit is also something that he thrives in.”

 

On the depth of the wide receiving corps:

“I love the depth, exactly. That’s what I like the most about it. DeSean and Pierre have been out, Jordan Reed has been out with a stomach virus, so there’s three pretty good targets. Then you throw in Ryan Grant, who’s done a great job, Aldrick Robinson has had an outstanding camp and some of the young guys, [Rashad] Ross and [Lee] Doss, they’ve stepped up and made some plays also. So it’s been good to see the depth of the unit, continue to show us what they can do but also they’re different type of guys. You’ve got your speed in Aldrick, you’ve got your toughness in Andre Roberts – he’s had a great camp, Pierre’s a tough guy, you’ve got speed with DeSean. Ryan Grant’s like a surgeon, he runs routes very disciplined, very good, so we’ve got a good depth and a good group of different types of receivers that we can choose from.”

 

On defensive end Jason Hatcher:

“He’s moving around good and that’s the big thing, and like I said yesterday, the big thing is just get him out there, do these drills, make him work it and then see how he feels after. It’s the day after or the night after his drills, make sure there’s no reoccurring problem there, and so far there hasn’t been, so we’re very encouraged with his progress. We’ve just got to keep pushing him, push him more each and every day and see how he reacts and get him up to speed and he’ll be ready to roll. But he’s champing at the bit, I know that, but we just want to make sure we’re very careful with him  and the trainers are doing a great job with him and the process and the timing of it.”

 

On how he will determine team captains:

“I pick them just for the preseason games. Those are just my picks – that’s my first decision as a head coach, so I choose them [laughter]. During the regular season we’ll decide how it goes after the preseason, we might vote. I haven’t decided yet, but I like the group that I picked already with DeAngelo [Hall] and Trent [Williams] and obviously Adam [Hayward]. Those are the most seasoned guys with the best performances. The body of work I think has been proven on the field and they’re natural leaders.”

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