BRONCOS QUOTES (9/30/09): HEAD COACH JOSH McDANIELS; QB KYLE ORTON;S BRIAN DAWKINS
**Prepared by the Denver Broncos P.R. Staff
WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 30, 2009
HEAD COACH JOSH McDANIELS
On if hard work builds confidence
"I think that is how I have always approached pretty much everything, whether it be school, being a father or a husband or a coach. You put in a lot of hard work and time and effort. Usually, you get results to show for it."
On if he pays attention to media criticism
"I don’t read it. (Assistant to the Head Coach) Mark (Thewes) reads it. I don’t really pay much attention to it. We all get judged in this business with wins and losses. Any criticism that comes within the course of the offseason for any team, any coach, any player, there is a simple answer to it and that is do your job when it comes to playing games and win. If you win, that usually handles all of the criticism that you receive."
On breaking down opponents to find their weaknesses
"That is my favorite part of the year. This is the most competitive league with the most competitive players and the most competitive coaches. To be able to try to help your team win with some kind of a game plan or preparation or some kind of a tip that you get through your study and your work, that is rewarding on Sundays. There is no greater challenge than trying to beat a really talented football team that is really well coached like we are playing this week. Our guys are excited to be here today and get started on it. You put in a lot of hard work, and hopefully it pays off on Sundays."
WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 30, 2009
HEAD COACH JOSH McDANIELS
On how prepared the Broncos were in their first three games
"I think we were prepared. You always feel like there is something, maybe, you could have done differently, but that is what halftime adjustments are for and in-game adjustments are for. If there is something that they are doing that they maybe didn’t show, then you have got to be quick on your feet. I think, for the most part, our players have felt prepared, hopefully. I know we feel like we are putting them in as many good positions as we can, and that is our goal every week. It will be no different this week."
On CB André Goodman’s and S Renaldo Hill’s performance against New England last year
"Intercept the ball, take the ball away from us, knock passes away, cover our best players. They did a lot of those things. They play sound, fundamental football in the defensive backfield. That is what they do. They were both here at 5:15 this morning. I didn’t know that when I was coaching against them, but I love it now that I am coaching them both. That is just the way they are and the way they work. You could tell that they were smart. They communicated very well on the field. You could see them communicate with each other, with their teammates. (They were) very, very rarely out of position, never really ever could get them to make a mental mistake where we had a freebie and they made a lot of plays that kept us off the scoreboard. When you are playing against players like that and you have an opportunity to see them succeed against what you are doing, you are envious of it. There are no players that you know more than the ones in your position. I was very familiar with both of them, and we are happy to have them both here."
On the chemistry between Goodman and Hill
"(They have) great work ethic, great communication (and) a good friendship I am sure, but I think a lot of the guys in our locker room are just like that."
On if the national broadcast of the Cowboys’ last two games affects this week’s game
"The biggest thing is watching them on the film that we get. You can’t see everything on TV. I didn’t really watch a lot of the TV games. I am sure that a lot of our guys did because it was the only one on. I think the biggest thing is watching the film when we get it. You can see everything and kind of break it down and then go from there."
On if G/C Ben Hamilton and T Ryan Harris will play against the Cowboys on Sunday
"If they can play, we would love to have them out there. If they can’t, there will be somebody who will be ready to go."
On if the three wins are a positive reinforcement for the Broncos
"I hope that is the case. When you get good results, I think that it helps reinforce a lot of things. When you get negative results, that could go the other way. I think it just shows our players that if they work hard and they do what they are supposed to do and we keep trying to put them in good positions to make good plays and play good football and we work together on it all week long, then on Sunday we give ourselves a chance to win. That is all we are ever going to ask of them. If we can continue to do that on a weekly basis, we will have a chance."
On Dallas’ defense
"This is a really good football team and nobody has asked any questions about them. It is a very good football team (with) 13 Pro Bowlers last year, 10 still on the roster. Defensively, their nose tackle (Jay Ratliff) is one of the premier players in the league, in my opinion. (Dallas LB DeMarcus) Ware, obviously, is a premier player in this league. (Dallas CB Terence) Newman is a Pro Bowler. (Dallas S Michael) Hamlin is a Pro Bowler... They have got great players all over the field. They are very big. They are extremely active. They penetrate a lot into the backfield, which (with) Cleveland, that wasn’t their style. They were more of a two-gap team. Oakland did some of that but not in the same manner from the same type of front as Dallas does. They have got a lot of disruptive players. I think that is the biggest difference is when they are really playing well, they disrupt your rhythm offensively by creating a lot of negative plays. It has been one of the things that we have kind of talked a lot about since the beginning of the season, and something that we have done well this year is limit or eliminate them period. They do a lot of that defensively we are going to have to make sure that we don’t let those guys in the backfield create pressure, sack the quarterback or tackle the backs in the backfield because a lot of drives you see second-and-13, second-and-12, third-and-13, and you are not going to play good football against a good defense like this if you play the game like that."
QB KYLE ORTON
On if "game manager" has a negative connotation in his mind
"Not in mine. That is my number one job description as a quarterback is to manage the football game. It is tough to win games if you beat yourself. That is really my approach going into every game."
On the attributes of a good game manager
"I try to, obviously, play smart football, not put our offense or defense in bad situations and make plays when they are there. It is certainly not a style of play where you are scared to take chances or scared to take shots. It is just knowing the right time to do them."
On T Ryan Clady
"He has played great. You just kind of forget about him a little bit because he is always doing his job over there. He has been great for us this year, just like all five of (the offensive linemen) have been. They work well as a unit and he is certainly special on the left side for sure."
On how the Broncos’ offensive line play affects his game
"You certainly don’t have to get the ball out so quick and when the run game gets going, that is a quarterback’s best friend. It is kind of twofold. When they can get the run game going and also protect so well, it makes it pretty easy on myself."
On the offensive line’s improvement since the offseason
"The way we ran the ball has been so impressive this year. It is a good mixture of young talented guys with veteran leadership inside with (C) Casey (Wiegmann) and (G/C) Ben (Hamilton). It has got a good combination."
On comparing RBs Correll Buckhalter and Knowshon Moreno
"Knowshon might be a little bit more powerful inside running the ball, but they both ran extremely well. Both of them, if you just give them that little seam, they can turn them into 40- and 50-yard runs. They have done a great job. Both can catch out of the backfield. Both block extremely well. They have both really, in pass protection, done a great job this year and won their one-on-one battles."
On if the Broncos’ confidence is rising
"It should be for the whole team. The more you play well, the more you win, the more confident you should be."
On if he will play without a glove against Dallas on Sunday
"I don’t know. This is as good as it has been so far. I think there is definitely a chance that I can play without it this week."
On if the glove has affected his passes
"I would say a couple here and there, but the majority of the time, I have played pretty well with without it, throwing the ball where I have wanted to wearing it. I am not going to try to play with it hurting or anything like that without the glove. If it feels better with it, I will just go ahead and stick with it."
On if the glove sticking to the football has affected his passes
"Yeah, I have thrown a couple of low balls which I wish I would not have had, but on the majority of the throws, it hasn’t been an issue."
On if the healing process is affected by playing through the pain
"I am sure. We haven’t dealt with it a whole bunch, but I am sure playing these last three weeks hasn’t made it any better for sure. I haven’t really had too many setbacks, had it hit in a game or anything like that, so it hasn’t been too bad."
On if the Dallas game is a statement game
"Every week in this league is a statement game. You get a chance every week to go out and show who the best team is that week. That is no different this week."
On the Dallas Cowboys
"They look like a good football team, no question about it. They are big and physical and have probably the most talented team we have played defensively. (CB Terence) Newman is a very good player in the secondary. Everybody knows about (LB DeMarcus) Ware up front. Number 90, (DT Jay) Ratliff, is a great player at nose tackle, and all the linebackers can run and make plays. We have got our work cut out for us."
On how the Dallas defense compares to the defenses the Broncos have faced this season
"In the NFL, there are a lot of good players. Every tape you put on, you are finding good football players. The scheme is pretty similar to what our defense does, so that shouldn’t be a huge challenge. We should be ready to go."
On if Ware is the best pass rusher in the NFL
"I don’t spend a whole lot of time watching pass rushers, but 20 sacks last year, he is obviously really good at it."
On what Ware does well
"His size and speed, and he is physical. He is coming right at the quarterback. He is not too interested in the run game and he is coming right at me."
On playing against several 3-4 defenses the next few weeks of the season
"3-4 or 4-3, they are trying to stop you either way. We will try to get yards and score touchdowns against them."
S BRIAN DAWKINS
On the Dallas offense
"They are a very talented group, to say the least, definitely have a real good running attack, three backs that are all capable of doing damage, a big offensive line that can move you and a quarterback that can get the ball to the receivers that he has outside, which can do something with the ball once they catch it. We have our hands cut out once again this week."
On the Dallas running game
"If you look at their yards per carry right now, that speaks volumes of what they can do, the damage they can do moving guys off the ball if you are not stout and standing there being physical with them. It is going to be a challenge for all of us, not just the guys up front, to make sure that that running attack doesn’t get going."
On if the defense will prepare differently for Dallas’ different running backs
"Our preparation shouldn’t change regardless of the back. We have to make sure that we are sound in our gaps, make sure that everybody is running to the ball. Obviously, (Dallas RB Marion) Barber is a Pro Bowl running back, and we know what he brings to the table—very physical. (I) definitely enjoyed playing against him with Philadelphia. He is the one guy that you look at on their team (and say), ‘You know what? You would love for that guy to be on your team’ (with) the way he comes every down, the way he brings it, the way he even blocks in pass protection. You know what he brings to the table, but every last one of them can get outside if you allow them to and have the speed to get going."
On defending Dallas TE Jason Witten
"It is going to take four quarters. You can’t ease up off of him. I have enjoyed my time going against him as well. He is a guy that you have to get up for and make sure that you study him as much as possible. Even at that, he is such a big guy that once he catches the ball, it takes a lot of effort to bring him down. He runs his routes crisp. People may not think he is the fastest guy, but it doesn’t matter. He finds himself open time and time again. It is not a one-guy job, either. It is going to take a group of guys to make sure that we can contain him."
On if he will defend Witten
"If my number is called, I definitely accept that challenge. Once again, I am going to continue to tell you guys that you will have to watch the game to see if I am going to be assigned to him a lot, but you definitely welcome that challenge, just like we welcome the challenge of going against Cincinnati with the corps of receivers they have. I know Witten is a big part of this offense, but they have a capable group of receivers you can’t sleep on. You can’t just say, ‘We are going to take Witten away’ and not keep an eye on the other guys that they have, who have all put up some pretty good numbers thus far this season."
On his familiarity with the NFC East
"There is a trap in saying you know people. You don’t want to get to a point where you say, ‘I know this team.’ That may affect your preparation. That may affect your thought process. Going into this season, once I saw it was the (NFC) East, I had a couple of games before that to think about them. That is really the way I approached it. Yes, I played against them, and obviously, I will be up for this game because I have been groomed in Philadelphia to dislike Dallas, so obviously, my emotions are going to be high. You have to respect this team. You have to. It is the same way with everybody in the (NFC) East."
On Dallas QB Tony Romo’s play this season
"Tony is putting up numbers, and as long as you put up numbers and you put up wins like he has done, you can’t sleep on him. That will be for the critics and people outside of the game to say what he is as far as record books and all that stuff. As far as a player preparing for him, you know there are certain things you have to do and certain things you can’t do against this quarterback because he is a Pro Bowl quarterback. He is a guy that puts up numbers and puts the ball to the people that need to get the ball and can keep plays alive and make plays that way. Much respect from me is given to this quarterback."
On if Romo looks different to him than in past seasons
"No. That pass the other night against Carolina should tell you that he is not a conservative quarterback. He threw the ball across the field. He just has one of those personalities that he wants to get the ball up the field. If it is so called ‘playground ball,’ he is going to do it. That is just his personality."
On if he thinks the Cowboys are missing Buffalo WR Terrell Owens
"It matters not. We are going to play the Dallas Cowboys and they have potential to put the ball up and get it in the end zone with big-play potential (to) either the tight end (or) the receivers they have. It matters not."
On if he is satisfied with where the defense stands
How many games have we played? Can we win a championship off of three games? We have work to do. We are still yet improving. There are still mistakes that we are making on the football field. The effort is always there, the coaching is always there. We have to make sure that we go out consistently every week and have the same type of aggression, discipline, accountability and effort every week. It doesn’t change. You can’t hang your hat on three games. You just can’t. We have to make sure that for the long-haul, we are a consistent group, and that is what we are pushing for."
On if he is pleased with the defense’s play
"Pleased? We are excited about the proposition of going forward from where we are right now. Pleased? I don’t know if you want to say pleased. You may want to hang your hat on pleased. I don’t want to hang my hat on nothing right now."
On CB André Goodman and S Renaldo Hill
"Any time you have (CB) Champ Bailey on your team—I have been blessed to play a lot of years in this league and have some success with the help of my teammates and my coaching—those guys are going to go under the radar a little bit, but I know, we know, what they bring to the table. We know how Renaldo gets us lined up so many times. The guy is so smart. There are so many things that he sees during the week that he, I’ll say, ‘hips’ us to, that allows us to be able to anticipate things. ‘Goody’ on the other side, I didn’t know a lot about him, obviously, coming here, but from everything that I’ve seen—his feet and being in position—once again, another smart individual. Like I said last week, the communication back there is ridiculous, how much we talk, how much we are anticipating routes, anticipating things with these guys."
On Hill’s and Goodman’s chemistry after playing together in Miami
"You almost have to separate them sometimes. They are like brothers. It is funny. They are always getting after one another in practice as far as different things that they may see or different techniques. They are used to one another from being in Miami, so they kind of get after one another."
On the national perception of the team’s 3-0 start
"It doesn’t make a difference. It really does not. I have obviously played a long time in this league. I played on teams in Philadelphia that (people said), "Ah is this team for real?’ The only thing that matters is what is coming out of the locker room. You guys will get tired of hearing me say that, but that is real. It matters not what any expert says, any panel says, any reporter. It matters not. As long as we believe in one another and we believe in the scheme that we are playing and we are disciplined and accountable to one other, it matters not what is outside of this locker room. It matters not. Let everybody say whatever they want to say about the defense, about the team, about (Defensive Coordinator) Mike (Nolan) or about (Head Coach) Josh (McDaniels). It matters not."
On the chemistry in the locker room
"I love it. You are seeing a selfless brand of ball. I can’t speak for the offense 100 percent because I am not in their meeting rooms, but all I know is on defense, it matters not who makes a play. We all make that play. If ‘E’ (OLB/DE Elvis Dumervil) makes a sack, we made that sack. If (CB) Champ (Bailey) gets an interception, we all made that interception. We are excited for that individual. It is not a selfish group. I would say the same thing for the offense. (QB Kyle Orton) is spreading the ball to a gazillion wide receivers. All of them are capable of getting big yards, same thing with the running backs. This is a team that is moving in the right direction. We have yet some ways to go. We are not hanging our hat on anything. We have yet some things to correct offensively and defensively, but the direction is a positive one, which is always a good thing."
On the Cowboys’ tradition
"I can’t step back. It is about those individuals. Those individuals make up the Cowboys. That will be for people outside (and) the media to talk about the Cowboys. We are going to talk about (Cowboys QB Tony) Romo, Witten, the running backs, Barber and the receivers and offense line. That is what we need to discuss and talk about. We can’t worry about the allure and all that stuff that other people want to talk about."