Trestman Speaks 11/6

Full-text transcripts of Chicago Bears head coach Marc Trestman from Wednesday's press conference.


"We moved right into Detroit today, right into special teams. We will be walking through all meetings and walkthroughs today. Today would be like a Tuesday. They're still going to be very sore from the game. Then we'll get in two practices on Thursday and Friday."

Pass rush vs. Pack
"We got five sacks. We were able to get pressure on the quarterback with our ends. Corey did a nice job inside and got some pressure inside. Shea finished and got a nice sack at the end of the game. Guys worked really hard with Mike Phair and Mike Sinclair last week and we sustained some pass rush. It was good."

"If he practiced today, he'd be limited. Limited means we would just see how he was doing. Tomorrow we'll see where he's at.

"I don't know where he's at really. He's been running around, working out with the trainers. He spent a lot of time on the off day with Bobby, working with bands, redirecting and things like that. It'll be day to day and we'll see more tomorrow. We're hopeful but we've got to be reserved about it as well. We'll see where things are in the morning when he'll be evaluated.

"At the end of the day the doctors will determine that. Part of that determination will be by working him out and making sure he can move suddenly and redirect himself and stride and run full out. Those will be the determinations and then the doctors will have a say and they'll make the decision on whether they allow him free access to practice.

Does McCown's performance impact decision to play Cutler?
"There is no gray area in this decision. The doctors are either going to say he can play, and that means he can play without any sense that there's going to be … nobody can ever predict 100 percent and we wouldn't do that either, but certainly that the doctors feel that he would be ready to play, and play at full speed. If he is then he'll go. That's really it."

"For this time, I would want him to be cleared to practice and hopeful that by being cleared to practice, that he will play. Because we want to give him all the reps. We'd be hopeful that the clearance would be indicative that he'd be able to play."

He's not there yet?
"I don't know that. We'll find out tomorrow. He's been running around. He's been redirecting. He's been climbing the pocket. He's been doing all of that but we've got to be able to get the doctor's OK. We'll know a little bit more tomorrow."

"If he's cleared by the doctors I think two days would be enough."

"He got a calf. It's day to day up to a couple of weeks. We'll see where that's at. I haven't talked to Chris specifically this morning on his timetable. I've heard other indications but I know certainly it doesn't look good for this week."

Short week
"We turned around to a Thursday game, so we've experienced a short week without any practice. We're going to get a couple of days this week. We've got a divisional opponent at home. All games are important and we take them that way. We anticipate that this is what you do in the National Football League. Everybody's got to do it. They play Monday night, they play Sunday. They play Sunday, they play Thursday. That's just the way that it is. This is the straw we've draw this time around. Our expectations are that we're going to be at our best on Sunday."

On hazing in the NFL
"I can't speak for anyone in the national football league on that. I'm not going to stand up here after seven weeks on the job and start speaking for the league. We've worked really hard from Day 1. Our whole foundation's built on respect for everyone in the organization, respect for the players, respect for the game, honoring the game. We talked about it a lot. I'm not privy to all the information. I haven't spent a lot of time. I know it's out there, I've seen some of it. All I can do is say we're focused principally on the concept of respect and the growth of respect so guys understand what we're trying to get done here."

Your idea of not having hazing came from the Vikings?
"I've been in places where there's been hazing and I've been in places where there has not been hazing. I told the team the first night when you haze somebody, you take their ability to help you win. Everybody's here to help you win. ... We're not talking about taking a helmet and walking off the field with a helmet. We're talking about other things. The words you use, the way you act, the things you say, affect people from all different backgrounds and places. We've got to understand that the beauty of this game is it draws people from everywhere, from different realities and different perceptions, but that can all be neutralized through respect and using the proper language and proper words in the right place and the right time _ in this building, on the field and when we're out in the community because we represent the entire city."

Did that philosophy come from any specific incident?
"No. I've seen it. I've seen the incidents. I know what it does. I've been in places where there's been a foundation just as we do here ... It's just part of the foundation. It's not a perfect world. We just do everything we can to set the tone early. We're not going to spend time having players worry about things that can't help us win and are going to be disrespectful."

You impressions of Josh on Monday?
"He played really well. He took care of the football. He was very efficient. He missed some throws, just like a number of guys miss throws, but he did a great job of moving the football. He made a great run on third down, made some key third-down throws. His touchdown throws were outstanding throws. I thought his performance level was very high."

Was Shea pressing earlier in the season and what does a game like this do for him?
"No. 1, he's been working very hard. No. 2, he's a very prideful guy. He wants to be great and it hasn't all shown up immediately like a lot of people think it should and everybody has their own perspective on things. But I think that after Monday night's game, I think there's a little more light on the top now and a little more self-confidence that I hope that we all believe in Shea and we've shown Shea that he'll bring out more of that in himself as well as he matures. It was a great sign for Shea and a great sign for our football team."

Why does the D keep missing tackles?
"It's not an easy thing to fix. This is universal throughout the league because of the way we train now because of training camp. There's very limited time to tackle. For us, it's just the cost benefit of not doing it in training camp, of waiting to do it in the preseason and during the season. We certainly have to get better. Part of that is fitting the run better. We've got to do a better job. I think that's something we've just got to work at. We're doing it every day in practice, and hopefully as we move forward like with other aspects of our game we are getting better, we'll get better at that."

Does the opponent matter? Is it just form?
"These guys are good backs, you can see that. They're physical guys. People are missing tackles all over the league. That doesn't make an excuse for us. We've got to do a better job. I know Mel's making that _ the guys are making that _ a priority. Hopefully, we'll get better. We need to get better this week facing a guy like Reggie Bush and these big receivers they have."

Marshall says one play can define a season, referring to fourth-and-inches call.
"I think there's 72 plays a game that define a season. I showed them tape today of guys making plays along the way that could have made a different in the final result. I don't even think one play defines a game. It could perceptively, but I don't think it really does. There's a lot of different ways to win. Brandon has a right to have his perspective on it, and that's great, but no one play really determines a season. The story could be that, but I could show you a half a dozen, for sure, that if a guy didn't make a play or if a guy wasn't in the right spot at the right time, it would have made a difference in the final score."

Thought to challenging Martellus Bennett's third-down reception before fourth-and-1 call?
"We saw it on the tape. The guys upstairs said, ‘Don't even challenge it. We're not going to get the spot.' That doesn't mean I couldn't have or shouldn't have. I just decided not to. From my perspective, I couldn't tell how close it was, so I had to trust the guys upstairs, and they were right. Not by much, but they were right."

When you watched again, thought he was short of marker?
"I didn't watch it again. From the TV perspective, I did. I just, from my perspective on the sideline, there was no way for me to know whether he was three yards, two yards, one yard from the spot. The guys said off the tape they thought there was clear indication that he was down."

End of first half, called timeout with 7 seconds left, looked like time ran off. Did you do that on purpose to make sure there was just one play, then the field goal?
"I did not. I just didn't get to him quickly enough. I should have been down the field another 20 yards to make sure that got done. I could have given us more time for the last play, yes."

Heard the reaction about the fourth-and-1 call and message sent to locker room?
"I really didn't think of anything at that time other than—I mean, there were things that went through my mind, certainly. If they get the ball back here, can we stop them and hold them to 3? We've got time to move the ball down. There were flickers of things that went through my mind, and we talk about these things. We talked about the play we were going to run. We always talk about ‘fourth down to win' in the locker room before the game. What are the plays we need fourth-and-3 to win? Fourth-and-1 to win? Fourth-and-a-half to win? So we knew the play we were going to run going in. I think at the end of the day, it just seemed like the thing to do. And we talk about the analytics of it, as well. But at that point in time, at that place, it just seemed like the thing to do. And I'm really not aware of, other than trying to get a little bit of rest and get back into Detroit, we're moving forward."

On paper, Lions game is bigger than just 1 of 16. What's your philosophy?
"I don't know that this one is any bigger than Monday night's game was. I just think that as I look at seasons, they're fluid. You could only focus on one game. If you say one game is bigger than the next, then you're minimizing…the importance of other games. To me, they're all extremely significant. When players work 11 months a year to train and work and only get about seven and a half minutes during the course of a whole season to play a game—because that's what it amounts to, really. There's so little time to play the game that you're disrespecting the game and you're disrespecting your opponents if you make one game bigger than the next. We know what the result will be if we win, and we know what the result will be if we lose. We're not approaching it—we can't play any harder on Sunday if we're playing as hard as we can every Sunday. All the other peripheral things that go into it, records, they really don't mean anything until the end of the season. And when the game is over, we're going to be 6-3 or 5-4 and we've got to get ready to play next week, and it's going to be a huge game again either way because the more you win, the bigger the game gets. And if you lose a game, the bigger a game gets. I don't know how to coach it any other way and talk about it with the players any way than this is the most important game of your life. It's the only change you're going to get to play football because you don't know if you're going to get next week. And you've got to put it all out there like it's your last play on every play, and whatever happens, happens. The scoreboard is going to take care of itself, but we're just going to play as hard as we can. And that way you take all those other peripheral issues out of it and you go out and play football because you love the game, and you respect the game, and you're going to play as hard as you can, and then all these other issues are a non-factor, and they're residual to what's really important, and that's just playing good football as hard as you can for your teammates."

Which quarterback is taking the lead in the game planning process this week?
"We go through the gameplan during the course of the week, and we throw things out or we say, ‘This looks like it's going to be a good play,' and then by the time we get to the call sheet, which is Saturday, we've organized the call sheet in priority fashion, so the guys can focus on those key plays. There's interaction, there's communication that takes place between Matt and myself, obviously, in the meeting, but also with our quarterbacks. It's just common. It's not something that is any different. Josh, when he's backing up, he gives an opinion if he's got one. It's kind of an open forum. We don't spend a lot of time doing it because we have a good sense that what we're doing is some good stuff, but if there's something that comes up, there's certainly room for an exchange of ideas."

Jeremy Stoltz is Publisher of and a member of the Pro Football Writers of America. He is in his third season covering the Chicago Bears full time. Follow Bear Report on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Bear Report Web site or magazine, click here.

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