Overheard: Ready to Compete

Posted Oct 11, 2012

Chiefs prepare for Tampa Bay

The Chiefs were in full swing this week at the University of Kansas Hospital Training Complex. After a game at home, the Chiefs are focused on traveling to Tampa Bay this weekend to face the Buccaneers who are coming off of a bye week.

Head coach Romeo Crennel announced in a press conference that QB Brady Quinn will take the field as a starter on Sunday.

Crennel also commented on QB Matt Cassel’s condition and said he had not yet been cleared to practice but believes he is improving.

“He’s been getting a series of tests as it relates to the concussion. He’s been seeing the doctors. I think he’s getting better, but you know the league is very serious and cautious about concussions and about how they’re handled, so we have to follow the procedure on that as we go forward.”

After practice this week, the Chiefs players spoke with the media.

QB Brady Quinn was asked about changes in practice this week:

“Yeah, you’re getting more physical reps. Like I said last week, one of the biggest things for me is, you get to practice a little bit more instead of taking more mental reps, and that’s obviously an advantage…I’m just trying to prepare myself for the opportunity...”

Quinn on his comfort level with the Chiefs offensive playbook:

“Yeah, I feel comfortable with it. I was with Coach [Brian] Daboll in 2009. There have been some changes since then. That part and just getting adjusted to the personnel too, there are obviously different guys here. That’s one of the advantages you have that we talked about earlier, when you’re taking reps with some of the ones now you’re getting to throw and you’re getting timing down with those guys, whereas before it’s more just mental reps. It’s just preparation for if that opportunity arises.”

RB Jamaal Charles on Quinn taking over quarterback position on Sunday:

“We believe in him, just like we believe in Matt [Cassel]. It’s no change; we just got a new quarterback. Hopefully Matt can come back healthy.”

S Kendrick Lewis is ready to play:

“Coach hasn’t put his stamp on it yet, but I’m saying I’m feeling good, I’m feeling confident to go out there and help my team, and I’m ready if he allows me to.”

LB Derrick Johnson on adversity bringing a team together:

“Oh yeah, definitely. We have a high-character team, we’re a strong, tough-minded team, so this is not a distraction. I know the media is blowing it up, but this is not a distraction for us. We have our minds focused on the next game and that’s it. Tampa Bay’s not thinking about anything else so we’re not thinking about anything else either.”

Johnson on the Buccaneers offense:

“Well they’re a powerhouse-type offense. They like to run the ball. Josh Freeman has a big arm. I even remember giving him an award (Simone Award for best high school football player in the Kansas City area) when he was in high school and I was in my first year here. He’s a young guy but he’s grown into a pretty dang good football player. He’s going to be hyped up and ready to go that day. They need to win just like we need to win so it’s going to be a big game for both of us.”

QB Ricky Stanzi was asked if practice has been any different:

“The only difference is really more scout team reps. Brady’s taking all the ones so I’ll be taking all the twos and I take those reps very seriously and just try to get the mental part of it down in case I go in there. If you go in there you just have to pick up where the first guy left off and keep the chains moving.”

Stanzi on performance during the preseason and preparation for upcoming game:

“The preseason is a great chance to learn, obviously, and I think that is what we did as a team and we’re still trying to build off of that. Every week we’re trying to learn from our mistakes and build on those, go to the next week and try to get better. I know it’s cliché, but that’s really all you can do in any type of situation you get in –whether you’re winning or losing – you have to take it one game at a time, one practice at a time and just try to get better.”

WR Steve Breaston on Quinn preparing for Sunday:

“I think Brady said it earlier in the week. Right now, he’s getting more reps with the first-team unit, but he’s always in the meetings, he’s always learning, so I don’t think much changes offensively. I know he knows what to do when he gets in there.”

C Ryan Lilja on transitioning to center:

“There are a lot of things that I have to figure out and figure them out quick. They’re mostly operation stuff or technique stuff. The old saying about teaching an old dog new tricks, I was set in my ways with my position with my stance, with my steps. It’s a different position, but like I said, it’s still football. It’s angles; it’s leverage. It’s trying to out-quick, out-athletic the guy.”

Lilja on practicing with a different quarterback:

“It’s the NFL. Adjust…You’ve got to communicate, obviously, with the new person who hasn’t been in there, who is still relatively new to here. But it’s football and Brady has done a good job. He’s been ready for this opportunity. That’s one thing you can say about him, is that he’s been ready for this opportunity. We have a ton of confidence that he’s going to get the job done. We have confidence that we’re going to go down there and get a win before our bye week. We need it. Last week coming close like that at home, it stings. We’re dying for this win, and we’re busting our asses for it.”

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