Press Conference: Washington Redskins coach Jay Gruden

redskins_scriptrWashington Redskins coach Jay Gruden talks with reporters on Friday. The Redskins (3-10) play the New York Giants (4-9) in NFL action on Sunday.


On the injury report:

“Barry Cofield, he was full today. He is probable. Jason Hatcher did not participate today. He will be questionable. Roy Helu is going to be out. Brandon Meriweather is going to be out with his toe. Keenan Robinson is going to be out with his knee. Kedric Golston is going to be questionable. DeSean Jackson, questionable. Colt McCoy was full. He’s going to be questionable until he sees a doctor today. And then Will Compton is probable. Chris Baker was limited today. He’ll be questionable.”


On quarterback Colt McCoy:

“He’s going to see the doctor this afternoon to get his final deal. That’s why he’s listed as questionable. Once he sees a doctor, he gets the clearance, we’re pretty positive he’ll be OK. Just want one more doctor to see him to make sure.”


On what about McCoy has been most impressive:

“Well, you look at the total package, I suppose. I think his decision making right now is probably the best right now, I’d say, because he’s been in the NFL as a quarterback the longest with his experience factor. I think his ability to see coverage, get the ball out, I think probably sets him just ahead of the other guys by just a little bit. So that’s really the No. 1 reason. He still has the mobility, obviously. He’s a tough guy. He’s a good leader, and players respond to him. But, I think just the fact that he’s played – a veteran-type guy, presence – gives him the edge.”


On if McCoy’s doctor visit is just precautionary:

“Yeah, it’s just another hurdle we want him to go through to make sure we’re 100 percent sure there’s no risk of him doing damage to his neck. So, once he gets cleared there, there shouldn’t be an issue.”


On if seeing the specialist is a formality:

“Yes, basically.”


On McCoy’s workload in practice:

“Yeah, he did everything good today. He was fine. He threw the ball well and didn’t have any issues whatsoever. So, I just want to make sure he goes there and gets it checked out by one more guy. It doesn’t hurt.”


On if McCoy took all the first-team repetitions:



On if McCoy will be ready to play Sunday if cleared:

“Yeah, that’s another reason why we’re going to have him see the specialist, to make sure he can withstand some punishment because he’s going to get hit eventually in this game. So, we’ve just got to make sure he’s OK, can withstand the punishment and maybe getting hit in the back, getting jarred in the back and just make sure he’s got the full range of motion. Once he gets the clearance then he’ll be OK.”


On Giants quarterback Eli Manning:

“Yeah, he is great, has had a great career. He is a Super Bowl champion. He’s consistent, he’s durable. You know, he’s had some rough patches this year. They’ve only won four games obviously but when you talk about great quarterbacks in the history of this league, he is one of the names that will pop up just because he’s been a winner, been a champion and done some great things and been very durable. But they’ve had some issues with injuries on offense and tried to work through them and they’ve got a new system obviously they are working through. But they still have very talented players. The running back is doing very good, the rookie wide receiver is obviously doing very good, the tight end. They have got some young players that are still finding their way very similar to our situation. We’re trying to get these guys acclimated to our scheme and how we want to run things and when you have that many young players playing, you’re going to have some ups and downs, but eventually it’s going to pay off. As I know Coach [Tom] Coughlin will to get them ready and obviously next year they will be a force to be reckoned with.”


On if there was much debate early in the week about which quarterback to start:

“It was talked about, especially when you’re talking about a neck injury. But based on his progress just from Tuesday toWednesday, he felt very good. And we thought at this time with the experience that he has in the National Football League that he was the best choice for us moving forward. But there was discussions, yes.”


On the balance between coaches motivating players and players motivating themselves:

“I think they go hand in hand. It’s the coach’s job to get the players up and ready to go and excited about a game plan. Then the players have got to buy into it and get excited about playing. So, it’s our job to make sure that we give these guys every opportunity to succeed and when we present our game plan to these guys have some energy, have some fun and let them know that whatever play we install, it’s the best play in football – both offense and defense. Get them excited and fired up and then in practice have some success and then hopefully it carries over into the game.  You know unfortunately last couple weeks, early in games we haven’t had much success, we really haven’t gotten anything to be excited about and it’s very important for us to get out to a fast start, let these guys know football is fun again to play and I think if we can do that early in the game to get something positive going, I think you’ll see a different team.”


On wide receiver DeSean Jackson’s chances of playing:

“50-50. He ran around a little bit better today. So I feel pretty good about his chances really, a little bit better, obviously better than I did last week for sure.”


On cornerback Chase Minnifield’s concussion:

“He is doing OK now, he is doing better. It was just a move we had to make to free up a roster space and make sure he gets OK and cleared from all the doctors because he struggled after the game. That’s why we made the move with only a couple of games left to make sure he is ready to get himself healthy.”


On running back Chris Thompson:

“There is a good chance we will see him as a returner and on third down some and out in the game. You know, he has been a good in practice squad. He has done a great job as far as being attentive in meetings and we’ve thrown in out there the last couple weeks and tried to give him some meaningful reps in practice and he has done a good job. He has answered the bell. So, come game day, we are excited to see what he can do and put him out there, try to get him out in space a little bit and see what he can do. He is a dynamic player and hopefully we can see a lot of him these last three weeks.”

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