More Coments from Karl Dorrell

Here's a collection of comments from Head Coach Karl Dorrell over the last three days of practice, including his thoughts on the fatigue of camp, the receivers' dropsies and the quarterback competition...

These are comments made by Head Coach Karl Dorrell in his post-practice media sessions over the last three days:

On Tyler Ebell's durability: "From last year's experience he didn't wear down, just judging him from that. In terms of some game-like experience, everything we've thrown at him in practice he's been able to do and he hasn't shown signs of wearing down. It's good to have a stable of backs that you feel can come in and you don't get any drop-off. So if we do feel he's wearing down we feel we have some guys we could play that can get the job done. I feel really good about our running backs. I think we should be pretty solid there during the year."

On the offensive line in practice: "I've been pleased. I think they're coming together. We have one senior in Shane Lehmann and he's still battling to be a starter in our offensive line. He knows he has to play two or three positions, too. They're starting to come together and feel a little bit more comfortable with one another. I'm pleased with their progress, but we have a long way to go."

On offensive lineman Paul Mociler making the push to start at right guard: "He is playing well. He and Shane are the ones battling for that position, and he has a slight edge at this point. I think the scrimmage reps will give us the best indication. When we start doing more situations where we let them go and scrimmage, those are things that can give us the best indicators."

Monday, on the quarterbacks' performance: "I thought Matt Moore threw the ball well today. I thought Drew Olson did some, too. Who threw that last interception? Was that Sciarra? It's too close to call at this point. There's no clear-cut guy. I wish I could say that so-and-so is our starter. Right now they're pushing each other pretty good."

On the timing of naming a starter: "By the end of next week we're going into Colorado work, so we can't wait. It won't happen this weekend, but next week. We're going to evaluate the scrimmage on Sunday as a staff, and talk about personnel, and we won't come up with any decisions until Monday or Tuesday."

On the rigors of camp: "It's a big challenge. They're getting sore and you have to keep pushing them. They have to challenge themselves to keep pushing through it. They have to understand that this is a team, and everyone feels that way. They're obviously getting fatigued and the attitude is starting to change a little bit in terms of training, and why you go to camp, and why you have to keep pushing through it. We're being challenged physically. As a staff we're trying to emphasize staying the course and pushing through it. So far we've been very fortunate not to have any major injuries."

On the receivers having the dropsies: "The receiver group, tight ends and receivers, they are dropping a few here and there. I think there's a lack of focus, and we have to continue to work on that. We're getting them more catching opportunities. Hopefully that will be shored up, and we have to keep coaching, and hopefully they'll stay focused. It is mental, and a result of fatigue. When you're tired and sore your awareness and focus is less. So we have to keep challenging them to keep their mental intensity and focus and do things right."

On installing more of the play book: "I think we'll work initially off of what we have. As they get more comfortable with what we're doing we'll continue to add along the way, probably a little here and there throughout the season. We have to master this stuff first before making that next step. And if I don't feel they're doing a good job in two weeks from now we'll have to keep doing what we're doing and not expand. There is a disadvantage compared to a team that's been in this offense for a couple of years because obviously they would understand the scope of the offense so much better. In terms of being a disadvantage because of the capacity we're at right now, I would say no. When you're real familiar with the philosophy of the offense that speaks more than the volume of plays that you know. When they understand the overall scope, they understand why we do things a certain way."

On whether the offense – particularly the quarterbacks are close to getting the offensive philosophy: "They're working there. They're not close enough. They might be close to 50% there. In terms of how much they're understanding what this offense is all about. Right now I think they're getting close to the point of short-circuiting. So we might have to slow down in that process and let them digest the information we've given them so far"

On Marcedes Lewis's performance Tuesday: "He's starting to get more familiar with what we're doing. He's a big old target that the quarterbacks like to throw to. We're pleased with his progress right now and hope he continues to do what he's doing."

On the quarterbacks working with the different strings of the offense and their reps: "We change the rotation up. They both get repetitions with the first and second team offense. Sometimes when you have your first offense going against your second defense you have to admit it's over-inflation. They're not going against the best talent. And the same thing happens when you're the second offense going against the first defense. The offense might not have the same success ratio as you would. So we're taking all of that into account and mixing it up. We're making sure they get repetitions in both units and make things fair."

On the possibility of platooning the quarterbacks: "It's still an issue. To me, neither of them is head and shoulders above the other. I think it could be that situation, and there's a pretty good likelihood that could happen. So that's not something we haven't talked about. We're going to do what's best in operating our offense and if that means playing with two we'll play with two. If it means playing one, we'll stick with one. In the first couple of games, it could be an advantage, to see who operates under game conditions. It could give you the best test. It's something else we've discussed, to see who could emerge. Again, we'll see what happens next week, in terms of doing it two ways or one guy being the guy. But we're not more inclined to using two now. We're more inclined to have one. We would like to have one. But there is a possibility because of the competition that it may be two. That's all I'm saying. In any ideal situation you want one guy to be the guy."

On Justin London's performance so far this fall: I'm very happy with what he's done. He's been a warrior out there. A very high-energy guy. He's even hobbled, but he won't step off the field. He's a really tough kid and he shows a lot of leadership. I think he has a bright future in being our middle linebacker."

On Rodney Leisle: "He's one of those guys that's a cornerstone of our defense. He's strong and physical, and he's in excellent shape. And he loves the game. You wish you had in your two deep on both sides of the ball forty-four guys with the same mentality as Rodney. He's a special kid, and we're looking forward to him having a good season for us."


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