Q&A with Todd Haley - 10/7

Posted Oct 7, 2010


OPENING REMARKS: “Thursday, we got to get into a little third down today. We had a great day out there today as far as conditions – it was a beautiful Missouri day. We had a good practice. We’re continuing to work here to try to make some progress across the board in as many different areas as we can. Today was part of that progress. We’re working real on trying to continue to make sure all of players are aware that we need all 45 on Sunday. We’re working hard at that here as we get through the week to try to determine who those guys will be. I’ve been doing a lot of research on snaps played by our guys, on both sides of the ball, plus special teams, meaningful special teams plays that is – that includes punt, punt returns, kickoffs, kickoff returns where they’re running and hitting and just really working hard at trying to find more things, or more jobs for more people to make the guys that we do end up putting in uniform on Sunday have a meaningful, big role, or a bigger role for us each and every week. I think that’s the way we’ll continue to get better and continue getting ready for a very good Indianapolis Colts team.”


Q: Are you kind of in a hurry to get to Sunday to see how good this team is going to be, a road game against a good team, you’re 3-0 and not really sneaking up on the Colts. Do you just want to see how good this team is?

HALEY: “I’ve worked real hard at not looking at any game like that and will continue to do that here as we’re in this building process. To me what it’s all about is that we were better this Thursday than we were last Thursday and a little better than yesterday. I’m happy for all the time we have, I’ve said that a number of times, but I really do mean it, if we could slow down time that would be good because we are far from accomplished. We’re working to try to become a good team and that takes time, so I’ll take all the time we can get, especially when you start talking about a team like the Colts that like I said yesterday, has won 101 regular season games going back from this day to eight years ago, nine playoff games and Super Bowl appearances. You’re really talking about apples and oranges between the two teams and we’re just trying to get better so that we can go out there Sunday into their place and be competitive.”

Q: You said you have to work at not thinking that way. Is there sort of an itch that says you’d like to see but you have to stay on point?

HALEY: “No, I don’t think any itch that’s not there all the time. I think like I’ve talked about some, human nature is human nature. I think in this situation that we’re in, you’ve got to fight human nature – mine, the other coaches and all the players because it’s easy to get caught up in something you’re not. That’s what we’re focused on, trying to be something, and we are working really hard at that task.”

Q: You said yesterday and today that you just want to go in there and be competitive. What do you mean by be competitive and why don’t you want to go in there and win?

HALEY: “Because if we’re not competitive we’ll have no chance to win the game. Like I said, this is a team that’s won, going into this year, 99 regular season games in the last eight years. I don’t know what our total is but I know what it is over the last two and the last three I’m pretty aware of. We’re trying to move forward every day so that we can, at some point, be considered a good team. We’re not right now, we’re just not there and that’s just the way it is, that’s life. This team that we’re playing is a good team, in my estimation they’re a great team. I think I’m just trying to be realistic I think above anything else?”

Q: If you’re not a good team what do you consider yourself right now?

HALEY: “A team in transition. We’re transitioning from a not-so-good team to a trying-to-become a good team and I’m hoping that happens sooner rather than later. That’s the bottom line for me as the head coach and where we are.”

Q: When will you know if and when you’ve made that transition?

HALEY: “I would think that there’d be an ‘X’ or one of those symbols they put next to your team name down the road.”

Q: Made the playoffs?

HALEY: “The good teams have those next their team names instead of the other one that means ‘has no chance.’”

Q: You talked about counting snaps for the guys. Are there certain guys you’re a little bit disappointed that after three games that you haven’t gotten them enough work?

HALEY: “I don’t know that disappointed is the word, Adam. I think we’ve had good results. I feel good about the things we’ve done in the games and the way we’ve done them. We’ve had some difficult weeks scheduling-wise to deal with and some different things along the way, the bye week falling where it did those kinds of things. So I’m not disappointed at all. I feel very good about what we’ve done to this point. I just think to continue to try to become a good team, from various reasons, we’re going to have to get guys reps. Right now there’s too many one-or-the-others in my opinion. There are too many RB Jackie Battles who have 67 plays but 63 of them are on special teams and too many, say CB Brandon Flowers, who has 180 snaps but 170 of those are on defense. I just think that to cover yourself as you go forward that means to develop players on offense and defense and to develop special teams players, we need to have more crossover – which I still think we’re doing pretty good with, we have a lot of crossover. That’s why I did the exercise where I’ve got it all laid out where I can see their team snaps and their special teams snaps and then kind of look at them against everybody else. It’s an interesting exercise and it’s something that I’ve been really focused on but I want to continue to be focused on and I don’t want to become short-sighted in any of those areas.”

Q: It seems like you’re saying now that you might need to get Jackie Battle some more carries or that you’re working Brandon Flowers too much but when it comes to Sunday and it’s live and you’re trying to win a game is it really that easy?

HALEY: “Well, I just think you have to…excuse me. I sound like Peter Brady or Bobby Brady, who was the one who squeaked? Was it Bobby? Right before that continued Hawaii vacation Brady Bunch that we waited so long for the next one, part two. [Babb: You’re not helping yourself Todd.] [Fescoe: Was that your favorite TV show growing up?] Well, when there were only four TV shows, you’re too young probably to remember that – when you only had four channels and three of them were news, yeah you watched UltraMan, The Brady Bunch and whatever you could get your hands on. There wasn’t anything to watch besides listening to KDKA and the Pirates, the Penguins and the Steelers.

“Alright Adam, sorry. That’s easy to say I think but say when you look at our secondary, say a guy like S Kendrick Lewis, 180 snaps and 15 to 18 of those coming on special teams or maybe a little more, he might be in the 20s, but 180 snaps is one of our higher-playing rookies across the board and then I look at a S Jon McGraw with 60-some snaps and it’s split pretty evenly, defense and special teams. I think that’s where you’ve got to start, or Brandon Flowers that’s pushing 200 because he’s playing some jammer. We’ve got to alleviate some guys and train others and try to just balance it out a little bit so there’s, like I said, less one or the others. Even a guy like LB Derrick Johnson who’s played a ton of snaps on defense, he’s up there in our top five total play guys but four special teams plays. Who’s to say he can’t be a devastating special teams player at times or in certain situations. Again I’m just trying to keep my eyes wide open and really make it something I’m focused on a lot of the time and then make the coaches aware of at all times also so that we’re not being short-sighted for the future or now.”

Q: As you evaluated the team during the bye week, did you find that what you did in camp played a role in toughening this team?

HALEY: “I don’t know. I am all for that but I have always been about training camp feeling like training camp. That is just from growing up, being around it and watching it go on as well as being in training camps or spring trainings from teams that I have been on. I just like that. We have been a pretty tough minded team here but how much you give credit to that, how much you give credit to surviving last year in difficult times, how much you give credit to our off-season program, I don’t know. It is the sum of all the things we have done to this point and like I said, we are not there yet. We have a lot of work to do but I like that, I know that I have been on teams where we have had training camp up in Flagstaff (Arizona) where you are at 8,000 feet elevation, but the temperature is always 72 degrees and we made it to the Super Bowl before. I have been to Oxnard (California) with Dallas where the temperature is 75 degrees every day and a little mist comes in every day and doesn’t leave until 1 p.m. It was a pleasant temperature. I prefer it, I like it. I really enjoyed camp and I like extreme. If it is going to be hot, give me 110. If it is going to be cold, give me a blizzard. That is just the way I am.”

Q: Does being 3-0 change your view in this transition or what you think could be possible this season?

HALEY: “No, it really doesn’t other than that I am happy that we have been able to see some positive reinforcement. That is very critical to success and the thing I was so worried about last year was, I knew the guys we making progress, I knew they were listening, I knew they doing what we were asking them to do a lot of the time, but we were finding ways to lose games. Things were going wrong at the end and we weren’t making that one play. You can only keep talking about it for so long but eventually they need to see some results and they need to see that reward in order to build and feed off of that and start to say, ‘I knew this was right, but now I am seeing it is right.’ I think we have a lot of believers and I think winning the first three out of this quarter has not hurt that at all which is a good thing.”

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