Q&A with Todd Haley - 8/31

Posted Aug 31, 2010


OPENING REMARKS: “Really what you saw out there today was a Wednesday/Thursday/Friday practice for the most part. Because of the schedule, it’s an interesting week this week and we’ve got to be on our toes, try to get as much work as we could get done keeping in mind that the game is coming fast here Thursday night. I think we were able to at least, even though there is not very much game planning, if any, going on for two reasons, one that there hadn’t been throughout the preseason and number two being that it is an extremely short week. We do have to give them both defensively, offensively and special teams some looks that they will see in order for them to be able to go out and execute those areas of the team. Got through today, we’re going to get back here and meet a little bit, get a little bit and tomorrow treat it more like a Saturday.”


Q: Have you guys discussed how much the starters will play Thursday given that you have 11 days off?

HALEY: “In general terms, but we’re going to do that this afternoon.”

Q: Everything okay with WR Chris Chambers? He was practicing earlier and then went on to the bikes?

HALEY: “As far as I know we’re in good shape. We’re doing a lot of different things with a lot of different guys right now so I wouldn’t read too much into anything.”

Q: Because QB Brodie Croyle missed the last two games do you feel the need to get him a little more game time Thursday?

HALEY: “Adam, I think we’re going to discuss that more in-depth but I think it’s a fair statement that he’s missed a considerable amount of time that adds up pretty quick for a quarterback. I think snaps that he can get will be positive, that’s for sure.”

Q: When a quarterback isn’t playing during the regular season, how much does regular season practice benefit him? Can a backup quarterback get a lot better if he’s not playing during the season?

HALEY: “I guess it all depends on the quarterback. I’ve seen some guys that were pretty beat up that couldn’t do a whole lot but could still come out and execute on Sundays. It’s all part of the developmental process. He’s one of those guys that every rep that he’s out there for practice I’ve got to believe is a positive one for him, whether it’s running cards on the show team which I’ve seen really fine-tune guys in the past or executing our offense. I know he’s been paying attention, I know he’s been doing the mental side of it as best as he can, he’s a pretty diligent worker, appeared pretty focused and for the most part like I said yesterday, he hadn’t appeared too rusty. I think today down there in the Red Zone period or it might have been the period before the Red Zone, it was a third-down situation and he made a really nice throw out there to the boundary that’s not an everyday throw. I think he needs to get back into the swing fast and he understands that and he understands there’s competition on both ends and I know he’s trying to be the best he can be.”

Q: What do you like about S Kendrick Lewis? When you drafted him, what did you think about him and his character and those kinds of things?

HALEY: “Well I know you’re talking about him specifically but I think the group of guys is a unique group for a lot of different reasons. They’ve continued to kind of show through the latter part of the preseason. But with this kid, you can’t ignore some of the background stuff on Kendrick. Without getting into his personal life, to manage some of that Hurricane Katrina stuff and all the things that have kind of gone on, that’s a lot of people, but he’s a guy that survived a pretty difficult situation to continue to excel and make it to a division one program and so far make it in the NFL, but it appears he’s got the chance to be a good player. He’s tough-minded, he’s smart, he’s got real good football savvy, but again, I put that whole young group into that category and I think that’s what’s given them a chance to have some early success, all of them across the board, which will ultimately help the Kansas City Chiefs and our team.”

Q: What do you think of him as a player? He seems like he’s been on a pretty good rise? What does he do well?

HALEY: “I think he’s got a chance to be a complete safety. It looks like he’s got good football sense and feel and instincts. When you see a guy, I might have mentioned it before, but when the ball tends to come to defensive players, however it happens, it’s usually a pretty good sign. Sometimes it looks like it’s luck, sometimes it looks like it’s skill but when the ball consistently ends up going to a defensive player, that’s a good sign. To me there are a bunch of those guys that the ball likes to come to them and that’s a good thing. That’s where we are right now with 13 days. We’re getting close. We’re in that process of trying to get ready to play the regular season and our next big step is Thursday night.”

Q: How do you feel about your right tackle spot?

HALEY: “Like I said yesterday depth is always going to be an issue and that’s just the way it is at most places. Those types of players are difficult to find, particularly at the tackle position, right or left. I don’t think they’re just producing them off a conveyor belt. To be successful and continue to try to transition into being a good team, we need to do a lot of things right and one of those things is going to be staying healthy on a full-time basis because depth otherwise will start to become a problem. What I do feel good about is that a guy like T Barry Richardson, who a couple weeks ago there was a lot more unknown, now two weeks later, there’s a lot more known, most of which being good. I’m excited about the development of him and a bunch of other players that it appears, across the board, it appears is occurring. That’s good. That’s what has to happen. Our second and third-year players have to develop. I think he’s showing signs that he is to this point.”

Q: Are you any closer to figuring out those inside linebackers and who your guys are going to be?

HALEY: “Are we any closer? Well I hope that in all areas that evaluation process continues to go on. I think that the real good thing is there is excellent competition in there and none of those guys are shying away from the competition. That’s going to be a very good thing for them and for us because it’s just the way it works, when there is good competition and you’ve got competitive guys and you watch those guys compete, even today for instance, LB Demorrio Williams, he’s on a look team punt cover and he’s running faster than anybody out there and I heard one of our players yell and point it out. That’s a pretty good sign. When a guy is in a competition at another spot is now on a show team special team running full speed outrunning the coverage, that’s a good sign in a lot of ways. Now the team we’re practicing has got to pick it up and realize that this is the way it works and this is an important day for us, this Friday-type day is an important day, though this week is unique because it is a short, short week and it’s a little different than anybody’s used to unless you played a bunch of Thanksgiving games, but Fridays are going to be critical to how we practice the tempo, the pace and that’s something that last year continued to improve as the year went on and now this year there’s been some good Friday-type days. Everybody needs to understand that how we practice on those days will generally reflect a little bit in the game.”

Q: Are you any closer today to figuring out who those two starters in the middle will be than you were at the start of training camp?

HALEY: “We have more information, if that’s what you’re asking. We have more snaps, but fortunately we’re going to have more snaps because those guys are all fighting, they all want to play, it’s like a couple other spots. When that’s happening when you’re going into the last preseason game and guy’s are fighting like that, that’s a good sign for your team, it is a good sign. In the end somebody’s going to start, somebody’s not going to be able to start but generally in some of these real good competition spots, I think and I believe that most of those guys will end up being on our team and then they’ll have significant roles one way or another and be a part of us winning. We’re just in this; we’ve got two days until we play a really good Green Bay Packer team that can hurt you in a number of different ways and a number of different areas, both offensively, defensively and special teams. That’s our next step. All we’re trying to do is get a little better each day across the board and like I said yesterday, if we continue to do that, I think good things will begin, start and continue to happen.”

Q: You’ve talked a lot about the need for your special teams to win. We can see K Ryan Succop, P Dustin Colquitt and CB Javier Arenas. What about the other guys, the blockers and the cover guys? How have they developed and are you pleased with what you see there?

HALEY: “When the game the other night ended I don’t know whether I said it, I know I said it to a bunch of our coaches is that it looks like we’ve got a bunch of guys or a bunch more guys that look like they like to run down the field and hit people. When you have more competition at positions, specifically when you start talking about the linebacker position, the secondary position, tight end and running back position, those are good signs for your special teams because those are the guys that the majority of which are going to be contributing for you. Like I said, we’re a team trying to transition into a good team so I don’t think you’ve seen everybody that is going to have to be out there for us to make that transition. I’ve made it pretty clear to all the guys that there’s going to be frontline, second line, whoever we’ve got to put out there to win on that special teams unit we’re going to do. So you’re seeing a lot of guys practice but the encouraging thing is it looks like in the return game we’ve got at least a couple of guys that if you can block for a little bit you’ve got a chance to make a real good play for us. On the cover teams it appears that we have more guys that can and want to run down there like a ball of fire and hit people in the mouth and I think it really showed up the other night. It’s got to continue to show up and that’s a good thing because that area we have to be real good.”

Q: Are you any closer to figuring out who is going to start at center?

HALEY: “We have more information, more snaps but we’re going to get more and that’s a good thing for us. That’s another good, good competition. We’ve got at least a couple of guys that aren’t shying away from competition and competing their butts off and that’s a good thing for them and for us.”

Q: Are these competitions at inside linebacker and center better than what you expected them to be?

HALEY: “This LB Cory Greenwood for instance, a little bit of an unknown guy who all of a sudden has made us take notice because he continues to run down on special teams and make plays. So all of a sudden if that’s something he’s got a chance to be real for us at, then you’ve got to start talking about how do we get him on the team? Then if he’s on the team we know we’re not going to carry 14 specialists, we’re going to have to put guys on the team that can do both or at least backup both. He’s in the mix. LB Justin Cole is in the mix, LB David Herron has stepped up considerably, he was kind of a late addition for us last year who has quietly gone about his business and continues to get better. Yeah, I’d say maybe there is more competition across the board at that linebacker position which I’m excited about.”

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