OBR Daily Blog Week Eight

Coming off a 6-3 victory, the Browns are .500 and heading west to San Fran.

8:46 PM

(Subscriber) Hardesty to get MRI: Hot News for RB Montario Hardesty http://t.co/dS1w5aGb

8:07 PM

Vote Now! Gameballs & Goats: Your cherished right to vote, exercised each week, right here http://t.co/wx2EXDMR

7:31 PM

Offensive Woes Continue: Browns offense struggles again as the 49ers hold off the Browns 20-10. http://t.co/jQZz49jD

3:33 PM

If you want a possibly accurate, certainly somewhat annoying live snark-tweeting of the game, follow @BarryMcBride of the OBR and FSOhio.

3:30 PM

Colt McCheckdown tosses short to Obannaya for four yards. Third and four now.

3:29 PM

Browns in the hurry up after a Colt scramble for a first down. They take advantage of the SF confusion by running for a yard over left guard

3:29 PM

Josh Cribbs gives me reason to live. Also, he runs it back to the 32 yard line. Then, Hardesty runs for five. Browns on the 36, 2nd and…

2:28 PM

Hillis out Hardesty in; Massaquoi out, Cribbs in.

1:06 PM

4PM: Live Browns-Niners Chat!: Join The OBR and Fox Sports Ohio here as the Browns go for the upset! http://t.co/p3KMMBqV

10:37 PM

Browns-Seahawks: Gameballs and Goats: Charlie Whitehurst for Cleveland Browns MVP. You know he deserved it. http://t.co/PABO5vtK

9:21 AM

Browns-49ers Preview: The Browns need to keep it simple Sunday against the 5-1 San Francisco 49ers: Score a touc… http://t.co/HFJnyKI1

Latest Links from the OBR Newswire
OBR Newswire on October 28th, 2011 AT 7:00 PM

These are links from the OBR Newswire for October 28th from 18:26 to 18:27:

9:05 AM

(Subscriber) What We’ve Been Told: If you prefer articles filled with paragraphs and such, this column isn't for… http://t.co/ESxqHV6K

Jauron Press Conference Transcript, Oct. 27
Don Delco on October 28th, 2011 AT 8:43 AM

(On how the defensive unit has come together)- "I've said it a number of times, they are a really good group of guys. They work hard. I think they are serious about it, they want to be good. We've obviously got a long way to go. It's not always pretty, but they're tough. They have toughness to them. So far they have done a pretty decent job. We've just got to keep getting better because it's just going to get harder and harder as we move on through the season. It always does. I certainly like them. I'm not sure that's critically important (joking), but I really like them. I like being around them and they've got a great attitude. It will be a huge test for us. This is a very talented football team at almost every position. They are really confident, playing at a high level. They just lost that one overtime game to the Cowboys."

(On the teams in the AFC North being ranked 1-4 defensively and if when he took the job he looked at the other division teams and thought we have to get to that level)- "It's pretty clear that this division is very good, it's very good. I don't know that I ever thought that. I thought we would have to have a very good football team overall to get really competitive in this division. That's what we're trying to do."

(On if he has ever been around a game that was a low yardage as last week)- "I'm going to say yeah, I just don't remember them. We got some breaks and it kind of has to work that way. I think you have to play well, you have to play hard, you have to be a little bit lucky and you have to stay lucky. Some things went our way obviously, but it was a great win. I really was a great win for our whole football team and our fans. That would have been a very tough one to lose."

(On the 49ers loading up on the run game and sometimes only having one wide receiver on the field)- "They are unique. As I said earlier, their talent level is very deep. They may be out there with one so-called wide out, unfortunately for the league and for us this week is their tight ends are as fast as anybody's wide outs. They can be out there with three tight ends, but two of them are like wide receivers. This is an advantage they have in there and they are smart in how they use it. You've got to be a little bit careful, you can't load up in terms of defensive personnel for example, because you will get mismatched. There's no guarantee they'll stay in a packed in set and run the ball in those situations. They do a very nice job running it, throwing it and threatening you with that speed down the field."

(On his relationship with Donte Whitner and what he looks like on film this year)- "I haven't seen Donte this year. We had a good relationship. He's a very good player, very fast safety, not overly big. He had a lot of skills, played hard, likes the game. He was a good guy for us."

(On the thought process when they drafted Whitner when he was in Buffalo)- "A lot of the things I just said, people felt like he was not a large safety, but a tough safety, somebody who would come and tackle you, would be a good blitzer. He had the speed to cover, had some coverage experience. He could play at times in the sub package as a cover guy like a nickel or dime player for sure. He was a good attitude guy."

(On how he feels about the play of his three safeties)- "We are learning more and more about each one of them as we get into this regular season. I am learning more how to use them and how to use their skills. They're all really competitive guys. They're all tough guys, which is something you have to have to play this game. They're getting more and more comfortable with us too. I am happy with their play. I think overall it's kind of like we said about the whole defense, and that includes us, the staff, we've just got to keep improving, getting to know each other."

(On how Usama Young has done in coverage)- "He's done pretty well. He's a big athlete that can move. It took him a long time to get back to us from that injury, it really set him back early. He's catching up, I think he might be caught up now. We will keep playing him, rotating him like we've done, keep them all ready to go."

(On if the Seattle game was the best T.J. Ward has played this year)- "Probably, yeah. He's a tough guy, competitive guy. He made a huge play in the game. The turnover was a huge play in the game. Hardly any points were scored and I think that led to our first three. It was a big play anyway just to get them off the field. He's an aggressive guy, we've got to keep finding ways to use him that way."

(On if any guys have surprised him so far this season)- "Going in we thought our linebacker core would be good and it's solid. That's a solid group of guys and they play well. The secondary we knew that Joe (Haden) was coming off a really good year and T.J. (Ward). They've played really well. Joe's played exceptionally well I think. There can't be a lot of corners playing at a higher level than him. I'm sure there are some that are playing at the same level. Sheldon (Brown) has been solid for us. Up front, with the two rookies they keep advancing. I think Jabaal (Sheard) flashes. Both of those guys I believe will just keep getting better. Jabaal has made a number of plays. Phil's been in on a lot of tackles. He's learning that you've got to keep those pads down in this league, because no matter how big you are or how strong there are bigger and stronger. They'll all come off the ball and challenge you. We've said a number of times, it's tougher in there. They come at you from a lot of different ways and this week will be no different. Jayme (Mitchell) is a really good team guy, plays hard and gives you everything he's got all the time. Because it was such a unique offseason, it's been a very interesting and short time together. We're still learning a lot about each other."

(On if he has faced Alex Smith before)- "I'm going to say yeah."

(On why Alex Smith's numbers are better this year than in the past and why)- "Again, their confidence level is so high now, you can see him playing with great confidence. The ball is coming out fast. They vary it, they do a very nice job. They will stretch the field. They will go down the field with the ball. They will also get it out of his hands quickly. They're very talented in their skilled people. They're tight ends, everybody talks about. They're wide receivers are very talented guys. As an offensive roster they are just fill it with number ones all over the place. I think all those things all contribute. Other than that it's another year. He's got another year behind him and it's clearly not a very easy position to play in this business. He's really doing a fine job."

(On why it's hard to defend Frank Gore)- "He has a very low center of gravity. He keeps his pads down, not a lot of surface to hit. He doesn't give you a lot of hittable surface, shoulder pads, knees. He's got great balance, very tough. He really fits in their scheme. He's just a terrific inside runner, always has been. He is hard to knock off his feet."

(On Kendall Hunter's traits)- "He looks like he's got real good speed off the edge. He's somewhat like Frank Gore inside. He's got good balance, good pad level. Frank Gore's pad level is very unique I think. You have to go a long way to find a runner that really has that kind of leverage, keeps that kind of leverage on hitters, just hard to get to his body and get a solid hit on him. They're a real good combination, a real good one-two combination."

(On if there are secrets for trying to tackle Frank Gore)- "There are no secrets. You've got to get a lot of people to the ball and they've got to really want to tackle. You've got to want to tackle this guy and get a number of people around the ball. Clearly on the field every Sunday there are people that are a lot bigger than him. That's an advantage if you can get you big people to him you've got a chance to get him off his feet. Really, he's one of the premier runners in the league."

(On what sets Vernon Davis apart)- "It starts with speed. There aren't many guys that size that can run like that. Both of their tight ends can run like that. He can really stretch the field and you've got to be really careful of the matchups that you make or get yourself into on him. He's a good blocker. He'll block you at the point of attack, work on you. He seems to be a very competitive guy. But, that speed, you can't teach speed. It's just something you're given and he's got it."

(On how Kaluka Maiava played)- "Kaluka was terrific. You people know him. He's not fazed by a whole lot. He's very, very tough. I'm really glad we've got him."

(On Chris Gocong and how he played moving to the strong side)- "Chris gives you great comfort because he's a smart player and he's got experience. He's tough and he's an athletic guy. He did play well. He just moved over there and handled it, fit right in. It's a great thing to have. As we said, kind of going into it with the three starters and Kaluka and Titus (Brown), that's a nice setup. Quinton (Spears) made a big play in that game for us down in the red zone when they got the big pass on us. They threw that reverse screen back to the wide out. If Quinton hadn't been there and turned him back or slowed him down, but Joe made the tackle. That was a huge play in the game for us. Our linebacker corps has been really solid."

(On if Gocong could play strong side in the future)- "I think Chris could probably play any of them. Really, he could play any of them, SAM, WILL or MIKE, I think."

(On the Sidney Rice's long catch catch)- "It probably started off with being a bad call. It wasn't a call I had made any other time in the game. We didn't play it particularly well either and kind of anywhere. It was just one of those deals. Every play in the game is the critical play. I think T.J. would've gotten him, I'm glad he stepped out of bounds when he did. I think T.J. would've gotten him. Then it was a great job by the guys keeping them out of the end zone."

(On if Maiava will get more playing time)- "We wouldn't be afraid to do it, but generally speaking we wouldn't do it. I really don't have an answer for why or why not, but it's just never been generally done. You almost always rotate your big guys, very seldom do you rotate those guys or the secondary."

Browns Player Quotes, Oct. 27
Don Delco on October 28th, 2011 AT 8:42 AM

Montario Hardesty

(On his thoughts on facing the 49ers run defense)- "We just came off a tough game where we battled against another good run defense. It's just like in our division, we have another big task ahead of us, another good defense. We have to just come back, get ready this week. We're 3-3, it's a chance to go 4-3 and set up ourselves for the end of the season. I'm excited about it and ready to come in and work."

(On if practice is different with Peyton Hillis back)- "Not at all. Whether (Peyton) Hillis is in or he is not in, I just come out here every day and just try to get better. I'm excited about coming out here and getting this game under our belt. I'm excited to have Hillis back. He brings another dimension to our run game. For me at practice it's the same thing, just trying to get better every day."

(On if the 49ers defense will be their biggest test so far)- "Definitely, they are a very active defense. They have been getting pressure on the quarterback this year by basically bringing four people. They have been good against the run. They are just a good defense. It's going to be a good challenge for us."

Colt McCoy

(On where his comfort level is with this offense)- "We're starting to get a feel for a lot of the things that we kind of do well. I think for the most part, I feel comfortable with all the things we're doing. I think it's a team thing where we have to all feel comfortable with each other and like I said after the game this is a growing process and we're stepping forward into it, really working hard and I think this group can't wait to get out there to San Francisco."

(On how good Patrick Willis is and what does he do for the 49ers defense)- "He's really good. I think this will be the best defense we've played all year, at their place and they're playing really well with a lot of confidence. I think the linebacker (NaVorro) Bowman that plays next to him is playing really well. Overall their front seven is really good and their secondary is making a lot of plays back there so it's a big challenge for us."

(On how big of an adjustment they'd have to make if Mohamed Massaquoi and Benjamin Watson can't play)- "It's tough when you have guys like that who are your playmakers that go out, whether that's Peyton (Hillis), Mo or Ben. But, that's an opportunity for other guys to step up and make plays and we were able to win the game last week with those guys out. They haven't practiced all week so we've just got to keep going and keep playing. That's the plan."

(On how much it would help this offense confidence wise if they had a game where they put a lot of point up on the scoreboard)- "Yeah, that'd be huge. We'd like to score a lot of points, but I think this team knows that it's a grind week-to-week. We're fighting, we're clawing, we're trying to do everything we can to stay on the field to move the ball and score points. Like I said, it's a process, we're growing and I don't know if we're going to blow anybody out, but we'd like to really get on some things and do the right things and score some points for sure."

Joe Thomas

(On going up against Justin Smith)- "Justin is one of the best defensive tackles in the NFL. He's been doing it a long time. He's extremely durable. He's big, he's fast and he's physical. He plays with a relentless motor. He's a guy that's going to be really hard to block. I remember playing against him in the second game of my career and it was a battle every single play. I'm sure that's what it's going to be this week just like it was when he played in Cincinnati."

(On facing the 49ers defensive front)- "They're front is extremely good. You look at their front seven and they've got some big time studs across the front. They're built to stop the run. They got the best linebacker in the NFL, Patrick Willis in my opinion. He doesn't miss any tackles. You look at their guys on the outside, they are outstanding. They run to the ball. They tackle well. They do everything you want out of a front seven. It's going to be a great challenge for us."

Shurmur Press Conference Transcript, Oct. 27
Don Delco on October 28th, 2011 AT 8:41 AM

(Opening statement)- "Let me just touch on the injuries. For the most part, unless I mention somebody, it's the same as yesterday. Mo (Mohamed Massaquoi) is progressing, there won't be any change from yesterday. (Phil) Dawson will kick today. Joe Haden will practice. Shawn Lauvao will practice. Peyton Hillis got a little sore yesterday in practice so we're going to back him down today, you won't see him out there. Tony Pashos will practice, Joe Thomas will practice and then Benjamin Watson is much like Mo, he's progressing, but he won't be out there. There's nothing new to add from yesterday."

(On if Hillis' game status has changed)- "No, none of the player's status for Sunday will change so we'll just have to wait and see."

(On if he knows if Hillis will play)- "Hopefully he does, but I can't say. We'll have to see because he got a little sore from practicing yesterday. We'll have to see how he progresses the next couple of days."

(On if it's Hillis' hamstring)- "Yeah."

(On if they can do anything different in practice in order to get off to a better start in games)- "We practice the plays we're going to run throughout the week in that say first 15. We make an effort to practice those plays and then we also emphasize it as we go into the game, we talk about what we intend to do to start the game whether we're going to stay in regular and run it or play action or spread them out and pass. We talk about what we intend to do then we just have to go out and do it."

(On if it's by design that Seneca Wallace doesn't stand next to him on the sideline when the offense has the ball)- "He's listening, he hears the plays and he puts himself in a position where he can watch the play. There shouldn't be anything. It's not strategic, it's not by design and then between series they sit together and talk about it. He's just trying to get a good vantage point on what the play is. Sometimes when you call it and you're near the line of scrimmage from a quarterback's perspective it's tougher to see. I wouldn't think there's anything to that."

(On how much if a help Wallace has been for Colt McCoy)- "I think he's very helpful. Seneca's played a lot of games in this league in this offense so I think he's been helpful."

(On if the Browns have any interest in Terrell Owens)- "We did not go to the workout and those personnel decision, of course, we'll keep to ourselves. But, we're not pursuing him."

(On what makes Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman so good)- "I think they're a pretty darn good tandem. Willis has been a terrific player in that scheme for a long, long time. As a tandem, they're just playing very well. They're obviously comfortable in their scheme, they run, they're very physical so they can play sideline to sideline and they can play downhill when you run right at them. They're good and I don't know if there's any magic to it other than they're good."

(On if the greatest burden falls on the offensive line when a team runs the no-huddle not in a two-minute situation)- "I don't know that. I think there's a reason why it works and it depends on what you're trying to get done with it. We saw again last week where a team came in and tried to commit to it that we had practiced it quite a bit and we tended to have success defending it. I think the biggest burden is, again it's all how you look at it and what grouping you're in when you try to go no-huddle, are you trying to surprise the defense to get them to not pressure you. I think sometimes when you surprise a defense with it then they have a limited package of things they go to or they have to default coverages and fronts. But, over time if you practice it and they see it then they have the ability to get to the stuff that they want to get to if they were in a huddle. I wouldn't say it's the line that feels the burden. I think what it comes down to is the plays that you have ready to go in the no huddle because you can't obviously execute your whole offense from that and then how well you execute them. That's the challenge."

(On if have the bye early in the season can work against you)- "I don't know if it does. Again, I‘ve said this before, we all rationalize that when our bye comes it's at the right time. Guys that have it early say they had injuries, guys that have it in the middle of the season say they've got less games to play. I don't know if it's an advantage or disadvantage anymore, I really don't. I think with the way the rules are the coach can't put his spin on how he wants to handle the bye because you have to give them four straight days off. How you handle those couple of days before that after the game you just played, there isn't as much flexibility or a coach can't use his creativity in order to practice them more or less because it's just structured. As we move forward we'll see the effects of byes."

(On teams being 3-9 this year coming off their bye and if it has anything to do with the rule changes)- "I don't know. I know when we were in Philadelphia, it's amazing, Andy Reid hasn't lost a game after the bye. Maybe it's the team you're playing, I don't know yet. Again, I don't have any problems saying I don't know the effect of that because this is a different setup now. I've been in years where we've had our bye early, I've been in years where it came right in the middle of the season and you find a way to move on.”

(On if he gets good focus from his players during special teams sessions)- "Absolutely, I've said this before, but I think the practices have been good. We have a good locker room of guys that try to do what we ask them to do. They try to do what we ask them to do on the field, they try to practice the way we want them to practice, which is fast, focused and smart. With my experience with those special teams practices in other places, we're having good ones here."

(On Chris Tabor saying guys aren't making effort mistakes it's just guys being in bad spots and not wanting to make the same mistake twice)- "I think that's the key, you can't repeat the error. But, when you've got a bunch of guys running down the field, one guy making an error can appear devastating and that's the challenge – making sure everybody stays in their lanes and everybody blocks their gaps. I can sit here and simplify it, but we all know that's not the case."

(On if he's seen T.J. Ward take a jump forward)- "I have seen his level of play increase and you're talking about a guy that's very accomplished for a young guy. He played fine football a year ago and I don't know what I'd attribute it to other than the fact that he's getting more and more comfortable in the scheme. The safeties, in the backend there's a cerebral component to what they do. They have to get the other guys lined up. All that communication and they're use to doing it more and more, anything you do more and more you get better at and I think that's the category that he would fall into."

(On if Ward is getting stronger in coverage)- "I think his general game has been good. Coverage, as far as his ability to support the run and tackle the runner so yeah I think he's doing that."

(On if he gets a sense that Hillis is frustrated with injuries and that he hasn't been able to get into the flow of the season)- "No, I talked to him this morning and I think he's hanging in there taking this thing day-to-day trying to get himself healthy so that he can go out and play. I don't sense a frustration."

(On if their good pass defense is because of an improving secondary, a better pass rush or a combination of both)- "I think it's a combination of both. I think when you're good on defense it's a team thing because offenses are going to try and run it and throw it. The game will dictate sometimes how much you do of each. Again, the other side is just like when we talk about our offense, they want to try and keep the situation where they can play run/pass and then they get ahead by a bunch of points and run it more. Our guys I think have done a good job of getting pressure on the quarterback and then our corners are doing an outstanding job of challenging the receivers and I think that's key."

(On the differences between the San Francisco defense last year and what he's seen on film this year)- "I don't see any real major differences. I thought they were outstanding on defense the last two years and the scheme is relatively the same. They have a new coordinator, but the defensive line coach is the same and when you watch them play, they've got a lot of the same players. They have a couple different players, but the scheme is the same so I think that maybe jump started their ability to play faster."

(On if Donte Whitner was a force for them)- "He was a good player last year as well."

(On what his thoughts are of Whitner)- "I think he's playing well. I think the whole unit is, it's hard for me to sit here and say there's a weakness personnel-wise to that defense. I know it pretty well, but he's play well as a well."

(On how much the Browns looked at Aldon Smith)- "We had him in for a visit. We thought he was a fine player. He would be great to have, he's had five sacks and he's playing very well and he fits what they do as well. If you've got a guy that can play on the edge and pass rush, he fits in any scheme."

(On if he has any kind of friendly wager with Randy Lerner over the game between their sons tonight)- "I was hoping to avoid all those questions (joking). This St. Eds-St. Ignatius, it's a big week here in town. This is my first taste of it because our sons are both freshman playing against each other. The freshmen play tonight at 6:00 p.m. Let's just let them play it out. I think its fun. I think Max (Lerner) and Kyle (Shurmur) have become friends, they know each other extremely well and I hope there's a lot of points scored tonight."

(On Jim Harbaugh giving the 49ers six days off during their bye)- "Again, I was in Philadelphia and Andy, I'm serious now check it out, I think he's won every game after the bye. There were many years there where we played the game on Sunday and he'd say see you next Monday. I don't know, the bye week, how much work do you really get done? I think it's important for the coaches to see where you're at and how you're moving forward. I think you've got players who are trying to get healthy, it's important that guys keep their physical conditioning up, the way it's structured now it's hard to go in pads because you only get 14 for the whole year. Not so much coaches because I think we all understand as coaches what the bye week is. I think sometimes the people looking outside in on the bye week think it's more than it is. Each coach has a different philosophy and it seems to work for teams that have had success after the bye."

(On if Carlton Mitchell did anything in practice to change his opinion on game status)- "No, I'll stick with that. Carlton will most likely be up this week. He had a good day at practice."

(On what he thought about Chris Ogbonnaya's first game after watching the film)- "I think I'll stick by with what I've said. I think he performed very well. For a guy to come in and in a couple of days, a lot of times you look at a runner and you just look at the stat sheet and see what kind of production he had running the ball or catching the ball, but when he settles in there and has to pass protect I think that's where he stepped up and did a nice job. He's very aware, what do you do when you don't have the ball and that's partly why I think he had a very successful game. He did a good job."

(On if he will work Ogbonnaya into the rotation if Hardesty and Hillis are both healthy)- "Yes, he'll be in the game. I'll try to get him in."

(On if Ogbonnaya gives them what they wanted in Brandon Jackson)- "I think they're similar in some styles. I don't think I got to see enough of Brandon to see how he would have done in all the other phases, but obviously Brandon's a fine ball carrier and he was doing a good job pass protecting and for the most part catching the ball. I think your second and third runners, they're role players so they don't get a chance to get in there and play themselves into a rhythm. They've got to go in there and get into a rhythm in a hurry. I think that's kind of what Obi did."

(On Greg Little and the impact he of his conversations with him)- "I think he's made huge strides. As a receiver you have skill and ability and you can run routes and catch balls and again it goes unnoticed sometimes. You have to learn how to be a pro, you have to learn how to prepare, you have to learn how to handle success and failure and you've got to learn what to eat. Some of these guys have played their whole career on sheer ability and now that helps them to a great deal, but they then have to learn how to be a pro. I think that's the important part. I'm pleased with the progress he's making. Again, to be able to work with a guy that has talent that loves to play the game, that's a good type of athlete to try to mold."

(On if Mitchell will be active is contingent upon Massaquoi being able to go)- "It's not contingent anything. He'll be up."

12:40 PM

Safeties Spark Emerging Defense: Browns’ fourth-ranked defense playing well thanks, in part, to their safety trio. http://t.co/Gl5Ml9aq

12:40 PM

Hillis: ‘I’m not going to be a distraction’: This has been a nightmarish season for Cleveland Browns running bac… http://t.co/PzhtlNLv

10:35 AM

Peyton Hillis: ‘I’m not going to be a distraction’: Hot News for FB Peyton Hillis http://t.co/8Eomkmsp

OBR Newswire updates for October 25th through October 27th
OBR Newswire on October 27th, 2011 AT 9:00 AM

These are links from the OBR Newswire for October 25th through October 27th:

7:36 AM

Gauging Progress: Browns offensive personnel may help explain the unit’s problems scoring points in 2011. http://t.co/XicQm8Li

Browns Player Quotes Oct. 26
Don Delco on October 26th, 2011 AT 6:50 PM

Joshua Cribbs

(On if Brad Seely is helping the 49ers special teams this year)-"Definitely, he's an awesome special teams coach and he's proven it. They are going out there and they are like top five in the league in special teams. He's a pretty good coach."

(On if Seely has helped Ted Ginn or if Ted Ginn has helped Seely)- "I think he's helped Ted Ginn. Each coach can bring something new to a player and his ability. He's certainly done that with Ted and with the whole special teams unit. It's more than just the returner."

(On if he was Vernon Davis' quarterback when they were in high school)- "Yes, he was my tight end in high school. We ran track together. That's an awesome talent right there. He is just a freak of nature. In eighth grade he has that size that he does now. He was a big kid."

Peyton Hillis

(On how his hamstring felt during practice)- "It was okay. It's a work in progress, but it's getting there and it's getting better."

(On how he would characterize the 49ers defense)- "Good fundamentally, I think they stack up as one of the best defenses in the league for sure. They play really good solid defense, they play really good run gap schemes, stuff like that and they do it really well."

(On establishing a rhythm between himself and Montario Hardesty during the game)- "You kind of have a feel for it during the game. If one back has a rhythm then you tend to go to him a little bit more and stuff like that, but I think coach (Gary) Brown's doing a great job of that so far and we just have to let it keep going, let it keep progressing and see what happens."

(On what his thought process was watching the Browns hand off the ball 44 times last Sunday)- "It was great. I think that the way the game was going both teams were at a stalemate, and once we got up by a field goal, and we had two blocked ones which was unfortunate, but we decided to run the clock out. I think we had 43 minutes of total possession time, which was huge. That's what you do if you can run the ball well and then you keep doing it."

(On what allows San Francisco to be ranked second in the NFL against the run)- "Big bodies up front and athletic linebackers. The linemen take all the pressure off the linebackers and of course you have one of the best linebackers in the league if not the best defensive player in Patrick Willis. That's probably why they do so well."

Shurmur Press Conference Transcript, Oct. 26
Don Delco on October 26th, 2011 AT 6:49 PM

(Opening statement)- "Good morning. As we get started, there's really nothing new injury wise from what I gave you yesterday. If you've got a specific question I'll answer that. Other than that it was nice, we got a chance to go outside today for the first time in a week or so."

(On who won't practice today)- "Well there's going to be guys in and out and they'll all be limited in some basis. Shawn Lauvao will be limited, not much. Mo Massaquoi and Ben Watson will not practice and Ray Ventrone. Otherwise everybody will either be in there or limited. Again, we'll wait to see at the end how much, when we file the actual report."

(On if it's hard adhering to the new regulations regarding concussions)- "As tough and as physical a game as this is that we play, safety is first. There's rules regarding concussions and guys and in the case of Mo and Ben they were both self-reported during the game by them. Each guy responds coming back from concussions differently. There are rules in place and standards and we just have to hopefully get them back as quick as possible."

(On if Massaquoi or Watson will practice today)- "They're not going to practice, no."

(On if Lauvao will participate in practice)- "Yes."

(On if Peyton Hillis will practice today)- "Peyton will be out there. He'll be out there. He's a full go.”

(On if Phil Dawson will practice today)- "Dawson, we're going to limit his kicking, but he'll be out there."

(On if there was any interest in keeping Brad Seely on the coaching staff)- "I spoke to Brad Seely like I did with a lot of the coaches on last year's staff and we visited. He felt like he had a good opportunity in San Francisco and that's where he wanted to go."

(On if he's made a lot of changes with personnel on special teams)- "The special teams game plan, in terms of personnel, is always a little bit dynamic. The rosters change each week and that's where it gets affected. We'll have a couple new guys in different spots, which will obviously be revealed on Sunday."

(On what kind of a test Brad Seely, Ted Ginn and San Francisco pose with their special teams)- "They're very explosive. I think your specials teams at times are an indication of your team. He's obviously a very accomplished special teams coach, he's done a great job everywhere he's been and they're playing real well. Ted Ginn has returned two kicks for touchdowns and another that set up a score. They're very good on special teams and I think that's a credit to them."

(On if he's confident in Hillis and if he thinks he can have a productive season)- "I'm very confident and we're looking forward to him performing on Sunday and having a good game. I've told this to players in the past that your next great performance is right on the horizon and we're hoping for him it's Sunday."

(On if Hillis will be the feature back or if he'll split time with Montario Hardesty)- "He's our starting halfback and if he's able to go, he'll be the starter."

(On what makes the 49ers run defense so tough)- "I think it's a combination of number one the scheme as well as the talent of the players that play it. They're very good, they're very good up front. They have a 3-4 scheme and they play it well. Against a 3-4 defense there's not as many of combinations of runs that you can run at it. There's five guys standing on the line and they're very talented. I've seen them four times in the last two years at the last place I was and they're very good and it's a credit to them."

(On what he thinks about 49ers quarterback Alex Smith)- "I think he's executing within their scheme extremely well. They run the ball quite a bit and the things they're asking him to do, he's able to do. It's a credit to what Jim (Harbaugh) has done with that team and they're playing well. They've got talented players, I think they've got eight first rounders on offense so they have talented players and a good scheme. They've got the quarterback playing at a high level and that makes him very dangerous."

(On if he thinks the running game should be at the forefront of what they do offensively or if it's more game plan specific to an opponent)- "I'd like us to become a team that can do both well. When I talk about throwing the ball we need to be efficient and that's get completions. In our style of offense, regardless of how you choose to run the football, you should be able to be very good at running it as well. I think my former team in Philadelphia is first in the league rushing the football, but they obviously throw the football well too. I think it's important you're able to do both and I think when you run the football, you've got to be physical up front. It starts with the guys up front, the runners have to be steady and fight for yards and then when you throw the football, you've got to get completions and I think that's what you're looking for. You've got to be efficient."

(On if Scott Fujita is back from his concussion)- "Yeah, he'll be out there today practicing, full go."

(On if Massaquoi or Watson are in the facility)- "They're here. They were in meetings this morning."

(On after dropping two passed last week if Colt McCoy has confidence in Joshua Cribbs, does he have confidence in Cribbs, if Cribbs has confidence that the ball is coming his way or if it's getting to be a frustrating experiment)- "Yes, yes and yes and no it's not frustrating. I think I've got a great deal of confidence that he's going to play receiver well for us. I know Colt has confidence in him as a target. He did drop to balls last week and he can't do that. He knows that and we'll keep working on it. I‘ve got confidence in all the players we put on the field and he's displayed the ability to be a playmaker and we just need to keep trying to get him the football."

(On T.J. Ward's responsibility on defense and trying to defend Vernon Davis and Frank Gore)- "He needs to play the run well and play the pass well and you've got to do it against two very, very fine players, not to mention Delanie Walker. I think they have eight touchdowns and the tight ends have scored six of the eight touchdowns. They're very fine players and I've seen them up close and personal for four games now. But, it's important that you're very disciplined playing the run and then with the run comes the play action. He's one of those guys that studies so if there are any keys or indicators there that he'll find to help him be a step closer on a pass as well a couple feet closer making a tackle, I'm sure he'll get that."

(On what he saw in Ward after watching film from the Seahawks game)- "I saw a guy that was very active, I saw a guy that challenged, he made a couple plays on balls and I saw a guy too that was very physical making tackles. I saw a very, very solid game from a safety in this league."

(On if the Seattle game was the best Ward has played this year)- "It was one of his better games, I would say. Again, he started the season coming back off a hamstring where he didn't have much training camp. These guys over the course of a long season kind of get into their groove a little bit and I think he's playing at a high level."

(On if Massaquoi or Watson have been ruled out for Sunday's game)- "No, they're not ruled out. Nobody is at this point."

(On what kind of challenges it be if Massaquoi and Watson are out)- "I think the challenge is that the guys that replace them have to come in and play at a high level and that's why you practice. Whether you're getting the reps or not, you've got to find a way to make sure you're either getting mental reps or we throw balls after practice. In the run game, they've got to make sure they're getting their fits. It's important that the guys that step in do a good job. The challenge is of course that you've got to still be able to execute the scheme and then you maybe do a couple things a little bit differently. Other than that you try to still play the game the same way."

(On how confident he is that the defense can keep them in the rest of the games)- "I'm very confident. I feel like there's no reason that we can't go into every game and expect to have a very fine defensive performance. I think it's rare in this league that you hold a team to three points, I think it's very rare. I think our guys feel that there is some confidence there that they're playing well as a defense so you like to think that they'll build on that confidence and detail their work during the week. They've practiced extremely well each week and I'm anticipating that it will be the same."

(On what Carlton Mitchell needs to show him in order to get playing time and why he's only been active for one game this year)- "He's going to be active this week, I'll just tell you that right now. He's active so he's shown me enough where he'll play this week. That's a quick answer but he'll be up this week."

(On if Mitchell has made a lot of progress)- "He has and he is one of the guys that has been playing as an inactive player so he gets a lot of scout team or look squad reps. He's got speed and size and he's healthy now. We'll try to use him.

(On if Massaquoi's injury prevents them from putting Joshua Cribbs on kickoff coverage)- "No, Mo's injury will not prevent us from doing anything. We'll play the game and sub somebody in there for him."

(On if not wanting to lose too many wide receivers due to injury)- "No I don't want to lose anybody. We talked about it last week, I'll put Josh out there as many times as possible. He did a good job in coverage last week. There's a decent chance you'll see him there again."

(On how much Mitchell's finger injury set him back)- "I don't know about the injury to his finger, but he's a young second year player that's developing as a receiver. He had skill and ability coming out of college and we saw that. That's why he was drafted. There are a lot of things that need to be learned and I think he's going through that process. He's a big, looking guy that can run real fast. I think it's obviously a distraction for a receiver if you have a finger injury. Your confidence catching the football, some of the things receivers need to come to grips with so to speak."

(On how Mitchell can climb back up the ladder)- "Unfortunately in his case because he wasn't active it has to be in practice. When you get your opportunity then you fine tune it during that week of preparation. Assuming something crazy happens, he'll be up this week. He's going into this knowing that he needs to prepare himself to play both on special teams and scrimmage downs."

(On if all six receivers will be active)- "There's a very good chance one of them will be down."

(On if John Greco would start at right guard even if Lauvao was healthy)- "No Shawn's our starter. If he can play, he'll start much like Tony Pashos. If he's in the game, he'll be our starter. I think it's the same. Shawn, I think is improving each week. He got nicked up last week. He'll be a little bit limited here as we go through the week, which is not atypical for a lineman this time of year. We'll see where he's at the end of the week. We tend to shuffle that sixth and seventh guy around depending on our needs. The week that Alex Mack was coming back we used (Steve) Vallos to back him up. Now with Shawn being nicked up a little bit, we'll just see how we'll shift those guys around."

(On how Scott Fujita is coming along)- "Great, he was good and he was out there in the walk-through running around and he'll practice today. My understanding is he's a full go. I shouldn't say that. I need to quit using that word (joking). I know he's a full go. I'm trying not to lead anybody down the wrong path. I'm a straight shooter believe it or not."

(On what is different about the 49ers new coaching staff)- "Schematically on defense they're the same. Offensively under they're last coach they wanted to be a team that was going to run the football and play action. I think that's the same. I'm sure there are probably some terminology differences. They are finding a way to win games. I think what's different is they've won games. I don't know them intimately. I don't know how their operation works so I don't know how the coaching staff fits. I think you've got to credit, Jim's done a nice job of getting those guys going. I think that's a credit to them."

(On if he knows Jim Harbaugh)- "I know Jim. In know the whole Harbaugh family so to speak. I worked with John. Tom Crean who's married to John and Jim's sister, was an assistant at Michigan State in basketball when I was there. I knew his sister well. I know Jim, we overlapped when he was at Michigan and when I was at Michigan State. I think he's actually a year and half older than me. I know him, I know the Harbaugh family. They're very accomplished as coaches and players. Jim's doing a good job."

(On if Harbaugh has a lot of personality and energy)- "Yeah, I guess. Again, we never played together and I've never coached with him so it would be hard to say. It seems like the guys that for him play hard."

(On what he thinks about the 49ers passing game)- "I think they're passing game is good. They're a run, play action team and they're doing well. They're executing."

(On if he has thought about the postgame handshake)- "Not really, but I figured I'd get asked. Typically now what I've seen in the first few games is before the game the head coaches visit and after the game you shake hands. That's what I plan to do."

11:46 AM

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OBR Newswire updates for October 24th through October 25th
OBR Newswire on October 25th, 2011 AT 9:00 AM

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8:10 AM

Time to Value Special Teams: Browns' special teams play takes a step back under new regime http://t.co/T6lSE25X

Shurmur Press Conference Transcript, Oct. 24
Don Delco on October 24th, 2011 AT 7:33 PM

(Opening statement) – "Let me start with injuries. I'm sure you'll be interested in knowing how our guys pulled out of this. Phil Dawson, he had a little bit of a thigh contusion early in the game. He actually gutted it out pretty good and so I wanted to mention that to you. He probably won't be kicking early in the week because he's a little bit sore. He didn't have any setbacks as the game went on and I don't want to predict what it's going to be like for Sunday, but we're anticipating he'll be there. Peyton Hillis ran today and he's progressing well and again, he's day-to-day. Shawn Lauvao left the game and he has a knee bruise and so he's day-to-day. Mohamed Massaquoi left the game with a concussion and he's day-to-day as well, we'll see how he progresses. Ray Ventrone started the game as we knew he had a hamstring issue early in the week. Started the game and then couldn't finish, he was out of the game quickly. Benjamin Watson left the game as well with a concussion and he'll be day-to-day. Others that didn't play, Scott Fujita is making good progress. Again, day-to-day I won't know. Joe Haden who did play, as you might expect, is a little bit sore today, but I don't think we set him back in any way and he played an outstanding game. Artis Hicks is better today. Tony Pashos made it through the game fine. Buster's (Skrine) fine and then Joe Thomas little bit of a glute strain, but he's fine. I really don't have much more to add than what I talked about yesterday in my post game comments, but I thought the defense played an outstanding game. When I watched the tape you just see guys battling all over the place. Upfront, I asked the guys to fight to control the line of scrimmage, which they did. Really eliminated any big plays. In the secondary, especially when they were throwing the ball, my goodness, they challenged the receivers from the first snap to the last and I'm very proud of their efforts. Proud of the scheme that we put together. I mentioned yesterday, I thought the coaches did an excellent job of getting them ready to go. We practiced all week against their no-huddle. They used it some, but I don't think it was as near effective as it had been in the game and a half previous. It was a great performance and I think that's something you're looking for from a team that's going to try and win games consistently, a defense that does that and they've done a good job for the most part most of the year."

"On special teams, we'll focus I'm sure, on the blocked field goals. We had issues in the left guard area. We had one player there early, then we moved him, had another player there and it was in that left guard area and part of it is the matchup. I thought Red Bryant, he's a big guy and he did a nice job of getting penetration there. We need to clean that up, we can't do that. The execution of the field goal wasn't to my liking and you can't have them blocked, you just can't. You get what you emphasize and we're going to work our fanny off to make sure that doesn't happen again. I thought for the most part, our coverage units were good on kickoff. We had some outstanding stops there, but the one punt return that broke out on us we can't have that happen. Much like any kick that breaks out on you, you have a guy get knocked out of his lane, somebody did not squeeze enough and then it just snowballs once the runner hits it up the field. Again, things that are correctable. As we do each week, on all our teams units, we'll look at personnel, schemes and we'll try and make sure we tidy that up so it doesn't happen again."

"Offensively, I think it's important we score points, I think it's very important we score points. I think we held the ball for 43 minutes almost, which I've never been around that. That means we were 50% on third downs so that means you are staying on the field. We ran the ball a bunch. You'll see when you play a game like that and you get two field goals blocked and you throw an interception in the red zone, when you play a game like that, when you have scoring opportunities, you have to capitalize on them. You can't count on a performance of the defense like the defense did. That style of game to get it to where you breathe easier, for at least the last few minutes when you have scoring opportunities, you've got to take advantage of them because it's very difficult sometimes to score a bunch of points. I felt like it was important for us to run the football, even though they were good against the run, we found a way to carve out yards when we ran it. We didn't have very many minus yardage plays, we didn't have a lot of large runs, but I thought the guys did a good job of sticking with it. I thought Montario (Hardesty) ran extremely hard, he had a nice game. He really did what we asked him to do. He pass protected well, he caught the ball when we threw it to him and then he carried the load for us a bunch. I thought Chris Ogbonnaya stepped in and did a nice job. He had a couple third down conversions that were great. You'll notice three of the conversions I chose to run the football on third and medium, which I think it's a little bit looser in there when they're into their pass rush stuff and I felt like that was something we could do this week and it helped us keep drives alive. Some of those things are good. There were times during the game I thought we were efficient throwing the football. Again, we missed on a couple early that I'll go back on. A couple of the throws that we missed on early, for whatever reason and I've watched it, then you have a chance there to keep the drive alive and really, those plays would have been decent gainers where you're feeling better about things. I do think it's important that we won the game and each game you win or lose it in a different fashion. The fact that our guys found a way to win it, just like yesterday, I'm proud of their effort. Now, we've got to get it out of our system. When I leave here it's all about the 49ers, who have only lost one game and it was in overtime. They're playing well on special teams and they're extremely physical on defense. I've got two years of experience playing them twice a year and they've got the offense rolling. They've got Alex Smith playing well in their scheme, they've got a running back that's had many, many large runs already and so it's going to be a tough test."

(On when Dawson got hurt) - "Earlier in the game I can't tell you specifically. As the game went along Joe (Sheehan) said, ‘hey, he's got a thigh bruise.'"

(On if he knows exactly how it happened) - "I'll go back and get that information for you."

(On if Lauvao's MRI only revealed a bruise) - "Yes, he's got a bruised knee. What do you call it? A contusion, I think that's a bruise, right?"

(On how bad the concussion's sustained by Massaquoi and Watson are) - "No, they're day-to-day. You know, enough where they were out of the game for at least half the game. I can't tell you, each guy's different as they come back from those."

(On when the training staff found out Massaquoi and Watson had concussions) - "They stayed in the game and then they were out. They show up differently. I know in Ben's case I think he stayed in the game and then was out. Mo (Mohamed) I think did the same as well."

(On how he views running the ball even though a West Coast offense favors passing) - "I think it's a byproduct of a win. You want to do what you have to do to score points and then if you're ahead in the game that's when you get more runs because you're able to bleed the clock some by running the football. I think 40+ runs is a byproduct of a good game. It must mean that you were in a position where you were able to stay run/pass for most of the game and at the end of the game you were ahead so you were able to run it more. I don't know if I'm answering your question. I think it's a good formula. If you can run the ball a bunch and score enough points to win I think it's a good formula.”

(On the ideal run/pass ratio of a West Coast offense) - "What it takes to win. You'd like to be able to stay run/pass as long as you can scoring points and then get to a point at the end of the third quarter, end of the fourth quarter where you can run it more because you're ahead. I don't know what that number is, it's just whatever it is, it is."

(On if they will bring in another kicker this week for practice) - "No, at this point as I sit here right now we don't plan on doing that."

(On the difference in the offense from preseason to regular season) - "I think we're doing a lot of the same things. I think in the preseason you don't play games that are comparable to the regular season because defenses; you're not playing your starters the whole game and what not. I don't know what it is, we're just working on getting efficient and there were some indications of efficiency. We didn't score enough points, that's what I'd say about yesterday. I mean we battled, to be able to convert half of your third downs I think is good and most of the ones that we had were in the shorter range, which means that your gaining at least some yards on first/second down. Those types of games, sometimes, when you don't score when you have a chance to, they become nail biters like we saw yesterday."

(On assessing Colt McCoy's performance and if he is getting hit too much) - "Well, it seems like a two part question. I think Colt's improving and I'll stick with what I said yesterday. I thought he battled yesterday. He scrambled once and got a first down, he got outside the pocket a couple times and got yards and got out of bounds. He did a lot of good things yesterday. My focus because it's become the focus of everybody in Northeast Ohio is a fast start, so I look at the first two or three throws and I still think we can get better there. I think that's something that we can still do better, but I do think he battled and he's part of the reason we found a way to win yesterday."

(On if he feels like McCoy's getting hit too much) - "When you look around the league in terms of quarterbacks getting hit, there are a lot of quarterbacks getting hit, in my opinion, quite a bit. I think he's avoided some sacks. I think because we see it on a daily basis we try to eliminate any time he has an opportunity. Either get rid of the football or what not. I try to make sure I call ‘keeps' and ‘nakeds' to get him on the run and every once in a while he'll take one there. Yesterday, we had a screen called, couple of screen calls where he gets rid of the football and it's kind of a glancing deal. We try schematically to make sure and eliminate that and we fight to make sure it doesn't happen. I feel like he's improving and I'll stick by that."

(On if he should put McCoy in the shotgun more) – "Well first of all, they actually pressured less than they normally do yesterday, that's number one. Number two, there was only one full blitz yesterday and that was on a screen where Colt ended up scrambling for eight. It was like 3rd and 11 and I called a flanker drive screen. OB (Chris Ogbonnaya) got knocked off. Had OB (Chris Ogbonnaya) got through it would've been a great gain. But OB (Chris Ogbonnaya) got knocked off on the pass rush and Colt sold it and took off and ran. That was the only real full blitz. I don't feel like they're coming after him more than we planned for. It's important you block the pressure, you'll see it again and again."

(On if he noticed if McCoy was hitting receivers in stride) – "Yes, it was in the meat of the game where we were finding a way to move the football. He was doing that and yeah, I did notice it. He could feel that and that's what you're looking for."

(On if McCoy was banged up today) -"He's fine. I was just up there with him. He looked good. I didn't see him run today, but he was walking straight."

(On if he is trying to build McCoy's rhythm up and his confidence) – "We're constantly looking for the things that are part of what we do that he does well. That was the emphasis in this pass game. They're a pretty fine defense we played. They're front seven is very physical. We knew it was going to be a challenge. We knew it was going to be a tough game. We knew that was going to be the case and we're always looking for ways to get him going quick."

(On his thoughts on if an offensive coordinator could be hired next year) – "We've talked about that in the past as well. I think the normal way to look at that is we'll sit down at the end of the year and see if that's the case. I think it's a normal structure for the head coach to call the plays. I've got guys on my staff that are doing things and that staff on offense is working together in a way that I would expect to see it next year, if we have an offensive coordinator in place. That's an offseason discussion. I think it's a natural thing to have a head coach, offensive coordinator, defensive coordinator and special team's coordinator. I don't think it's abnormal, a team scored 62 points last night and their head coach calls the plays. I don't think it's abnormal to see it go that way."

(On if the offensive coordinator would want to take charge on calling the plays) – "I don't know that, but it doesn't happen that way all the time. I don't know the number around the league. There are quite a few structures where the head coach calls the plays and they have an offensive coordinator. I'm thinking of two right now. The one I mentioned last night (New Orleans Saints) and then the Green Bay Packers. Those are the two that come to mind right now, but it's not abnormal. When we first went to Philadelphia Andy Reid called the plays. He had an offensive coordinator. I know Coach Holmgren his whole career he called the plays and he had an offensive coordinator. I don't know if I'm answering your question, maybe I'm adding light to it."

(On if Colt is where he should be at this point) – "This is a little uncharted, playing without an offseason. I think it's important that he just improves each week. At the end of the year we'll just add it up and see where it's at. It's a little bit hard to define right now. If we would have had a full offseason with all the OTA's you would have had a better idea where he was during training camp, then you can judge the improvement during training camp and then so on. This is a little bit uncharted as far as marking the progress I think."

(On what McCoy would have to improve right away) – "He did a good job yesterday. He got us out of a couple plays. He overed (audibled) a couple of runs. He did some things yesterday that may not be obvious that were real good. You just need to get more completions. I think that's an important piece for a quarterback. Get completions. If you're running crossing routes hit him in stride, so they can run with the football."

(On why the defense is playing well compared to the offensive struggles) – "I'm just glad they're playing well. I think the scheme is sound. I think the coaches do an excellent job and we have some very talented, some being young but some very talented players there. I think the leadership that D'Qwell Jackson's providing is outstanding and we have a secondary that challenges. I think that's important and a defensive line as a unit that's improving. I can't explain why they're playing well, but I'm glad they are."

(On if the defense has a chance to be an elite group this season) – "I really just want a defense that's helping us win ball games. It's a fun thing to talk about number wise, statistically and it points to good performance. I think they've got a chance to be a fine defense all the way through the year. There have been some very, very well played defensive games so far. I think that's good."

(On if he liked the way how Montario Hardesty ran to balance out his average) – "First of all, they're a sturdy front to run against. When you continue to call runs, I'm glad he was just getting yards. You'd like it to be more. You'd like it to be around four or more, but the fact that he was getting yards they weren't for the most part loss yardage runs. We were just advancing the football. Again, because the defense played so well we were able to do that. I think that was good. I think he showed some toughness. He took some good licks. He really did and kept playing, which I think is a credit to him."

(On if Hardesty was focusing on catching the football better) – "You try to get him to forget about it and help him improve on it. These guys are competitors and one of the things they have to learn is you have to have a real short term memory. Just like after victories, just like after losses, after good performances, bad performances, a good play or a bad play. You have to move on and try to get it fixed. I think it's a credit to him. He found a way to catch the ball better. I think (Running Backs Coach) Gary (Brown) worked very hard with him. We gave him opportunities in practice to catch the football, which he did for the most part. I think he dropped a couple, but I think that's part of practice too. You get through it. He worked on it and you get what you emphasize."

(On how he felt about having two rookies on the defensive line at the beginning of the season) - "We didn't have much choice. I try not to worry about things you really don't have much control over. We didn't have much choice. I did know this; they were young, very talented guys that we brought here for a reason. I did know this; they were going to bust their tail to improve. I think for the most part we're seeing that. Now, improve their productivity, improve their ability to play hard every snap, all those things. I was excited about the fact they were young and talented and eager to do good. I guess I'm more excited about the fact that their helping contribute to winning performances on defense."

(On how Phil Taylor and Jabaal Sheard are playing) – "I think they're playing pretty well. They each have things that their doing better as time goes on. In Jabaal's case, we took a couple games where we put him to the left, which has helped his performance and now he's getting a feel for how to play over there. I think Phil is in there battling. He's learning how to play hard every snap. He has a chance to be explosive because of his size and quickness. I think that's an important thing."

(On the 14-play drive in the 4th quarter) – "I think if you can hold the football at the end of the game and move the ball and chew clock. It's very demoralizing for an opponent, because they're thinking we need the ball back, we need the ball back and they start to get anxious. I thought it was good because there were some things in there that Colt did extremely well. He managed it, we were getting completions. Albeit they were short, we were finding a way to move the chains."

(On if he regrets bringing in a veteran receiver) – "We've got some receivers I think that will become very veteran, very fast because they're young and they're playing. Greg Little showed up again. He had a couple of catches that were fighting for yardage. There were plenty of things he needs to correct. I'll be the first one to tell him that. He battled. In terms of the veteran receiver we have a veteran presence there in some ways. I don't regret not bringing in someone at this point. We've got guys there that can make plays and we just have to do a good job of putting them in a position to do it. At this point, we take the team we've got and let's move it forward and fight and scratch, and do what we have to do to try to win games. I think that's the message."

(On if Evan Moore is playing more) – "Evan played a lot more. I had a plan to play him anyways and then he played when Ben got hurt, so then that allowed us to slide Jordan Cameron in the game as well. He played the true tight end position more than he would've had Ben still of been in there."

(On evidence of progress from other members of his receiving corps) – "I see some of the things they are doing in the game that sometimes doesn't involve production. Before Mo (Mohamed) got knocked out of the game I thought he was making progress. When he comes back he'll continue to do so. He's made some catches, couple of touchdown catches. He's been generally productive. I think that group as a whole is getting better and improving."

(On if he will spend more time on special teams this week) – "We will just emphasize the work that we're doing and make sure that we're cleaning up those issues that have showed up in the last two weeks."

6:37 PM

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Latest Links from the OBR Newswire
OBR Newswire on October 24th, 2011 AT 10:00 AM

These are links from the OBR Newswire for October 24th from 08:29 to 08:32:

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