Chapman Answers Your Questions

Running back Doug Chapman says he's not even sure if he is going to start Monday night, calling it a game-time decision, but he is able to answer your questions about the team.

What has happened to the team chemistry/unity? And what will it take to right the ship? I've been a fan for 32 years and I am not going to give up now. Here's to a good game against Philly, and good luck.
Chapman says: Right now, with the way things have been going, we don't think we have to right the ship. We just have to play up to our abilities. As a team, going into the preseason, we knew what our potential was. We don't feel that something drastic has to be done, we just have to find it in ourselves to play the football we know everybody on the team is capable of.

What was the biggest difference between the Packers game and the Philly game?
Chapman says: I think everybody in that game (against the Packers) was just on their game. No one was playing lackadaisical and everybody was healthy. We had a lot confidence and we came out in the game and set the tone early. That just carried through the rest of the game. (In Philadelphia) we just got off to a bad start and got taken out of our offensive game, and it went downhill from there.

How important is it for the offense to get out and set the tempo early in the game? And is that possible to still do without scoring in the first couple series?
Chapman says: Well, if you get the ball first and you march down the field and score and you take some time off the clock, that keeps the opposing team's offense on the sideline, where they can't get on the field and get a feel for the game. For the other team's defense, it's kind of demoralizing when you score on the opening drive. I think it's more of a mental thing in the NFL than anything. When the team's offense sets the tone, that's big for the rest of the game.

Have you gotten better with your reads with each game you've played? You said earlier this year there was a big difference in your comfort level between this year and your rookie year. Is there even more of a difference comparing right now to the start of the preseason?
Chapman says: There definitely is. The more reps you can get as a running back in this league and the more comfortable you can get running the ball, the easier everything comes. I love taking reps in practice. I would love to have a 30-carry game. I would love that, because even if I only got 90 yards, just to have that many reps and going live with action and seeing it full speed, no film can teach you that and no practice can coach that. The more a running back gets the ball, the more comfortable he is in the offense and how he feels and carries the ball. That's just how it works.

Are you more comfortable in one formation over another, like a single set versus the I-formation or even the "I" vs. the split backfield?
Chapman says: To be honest with you, I'm comfortable in all of them. I just want to get the ball and make a good read, make a good cut and get upfield. I love having (Jim) Kleinsasser in front of me; he's a great blocker. We have a great line. It's just that people have doubted our line and people have said bad things about our offense, but we haven't played to our potential. Once we have everybody playing to our potential consistently like we did against Green Bay, we're going to have everybody knowing what we already know.

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