WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2010
Vikings Head Coach Brad Childress
[We’re] facing a good New England Patriots team; record speaks for itself. They’ve found a few different ways to win. They’re able to throw it obviously. I think that’s the thing that stands out. They have the ability, with the tight ends, to run the football and change the line of scrimmage. They don’t just fall in one department for us. Defensively, that 3-4 front is a solid front with two bookend outside linebackers. A good bit of zone, some man-to-man. Just very solid. When I look at their front in terms of Vince Wilfork and Mike Wright and Gerard Warren, a former first round pick, just a solid, solid group that we’re going to face. We’ll have our hands full. Our guys are excited about the challenge. We’ll kind of set the wheels in motion and start to prepare for it today.
Q: Is Brett going to do anything today? Do you have a plan for him this week?
A: We’ve got a plan, but the biggest part of the plan right now is rehabbing that thing and getting it back where he’s mobile.
Q: Do you expect him to play?
A: I wouldn’t put it past him. He’s going to make the push like all of our guys do to Sunday. It’s work for a lot of our guys to get to the point where they feel like they can [play]. But I don’t have any crystal ball or anything like that. Obviously he’s still in a boot right now.
Q: Would it have even been a question [about playing] if it were anybody else?
A: Just based on what I’ve seen, him moving around, I’d say yeah. Whether it’s one of your quarterbacks or one of your wide receivers moving around the way he’s moving right now, yeah.
Q: With Brett being Brett, how much of the decision will be his and how much yours?
A: You have to weigh both; what he’s telling you [and your opinion]. I’ve said before, sometimes you have to protect people from themselves as well.
Q: Based on the MRI, how severe was the fracture?
A: You’re talking to the wrong guy to rate severity. I just know how they were advertised to me and the words they used. I didn’t use any words that weren’t said to me.
Q: It wasn’t a like a moderate fracture or severe fracture?
A: I think I gave you the words the other day: avulsion fracture and stress fracture were the two words that were told to me.
Q: What day of the week would you like to make the decision?
A: Yesterday. Obviously that’s not in the cards here. It’s an evolving situation.
Q: Will you have him out there today at all?
A: He may come out. He may wander out but he’s going to spend the lion’s share of the stuff, he was at the walk-through, treating.
Q: There was a report that he visited Dr. Andrews. Did that shed any light on anything?
A: He was here all day yesterday. Our doctors share with their doctors and you can do a lot of things over a computer.
Q: He didn’t make the trip down to see him?
Q: Will his past performance have anything to do with your decision?
A: It’s an all-encompassing thing. It’s everything when you make that decision. Right now we’re looking at, physically, is he able to get there.
Q: Physically is it more than just mobility? What about his ability to plant and drive and throw accurately?
A: All of the above. All of the physical things that you have to be able to do. Number one to protect yourself back there so that you’re not some kind of a sitting duck. We talked the other day about Donovan McNabb playing the whole second half of a game against Arizona with a broken ankle. Some of your other instincts picked up sometimes as a quarterback. He actually played very well in the second half. But had we had known, I’m not sure we would have proceeded that way.
Q: How would you assess his mobility in the first six games?
A: Not like Michael Vick’s, but few people do have that. You just want to have the ability to move and slide and reset yourself in the pocket, that type of thing.
Q: Is he going to have to get on the field practice-wise or will there be some other type of session?
A: You’ll be able to see that, just some of the movement specific things that he has to do specific to his position.
Q: During practice, or something else?
A: Probably not a practice format, I wouldn’t think. Before you put him on the practice field you have to graduate him through this mandated treatment process. Some of it’s the functional strength and the functional movement that goes with the position.
Q: Are you going to need to see him practice before he can play Sunday?
A: I’m going to need to see some movement skills to indicate that he can do that.
Q: What’s your opinion of Tavaris Jackson’s readiness?
A: He’s as ready as he’s ever going to be, aside from having lots and lots of turns. As I’ve said before, he’s taken more than most backup quarterbacks. That’s just how we did it last year and this year. Aside from having 100 starts, he’s as ready as he’ll ever be.
Q: There was a report yesterday that you were fined $35K for your comments on the officiating. Is that something that you thought was a bit high?
A: It really doesn’t matter what I think. Sometimes you pay a price for speaking what you believe to be the truth.
Q: Looking back would you still say that based on what you saw?
A: I’d go with what I just said.
A: He was out there for the walk-through today. We don’t see any ill effects. He’s passed all of his neurological things, his exercise challenge, that type of thing.
Q: Are you surprised by the lack of sacks that your team has?
A: It’s more are you pressuring the quarterback. Would I like to have more sacks? Yes I would, but you look at other things too. Are you forcing to guy to move around and throw the ball errantly? Are you able to hit him? Are you able to pressure him? Typically those sacks come in waves. Would we catch a good wave? We’ll see. This is a solid front we’re playing this week, in terms of inside and both the tackles. We’ll have our hands full this week as well. In answer, would I like to see more? Yeah, I’d love to see more, by anybody. It doesn’t have to be a defensive end. Might be a linebacker, might be a safety. Not a bad thing to put the quarterback on the ground with the ball.
Q: Looking at the tape you got a lot of pressure on Tony Romo. Did you get enough pressure during the Packer game?
A: I think the thing that probably stands out is we pressure him, we allowed him to escape a couple times. With a more athletic quarterback that’s an issue; where he can get out and see. We did make him throw it errantly a few times, hit him a few times. Not as many times as you’d like to, to be able to change a lot of throws, that type of thing.
Q: What has held
A: I don’t know that he’s been held back. I would say he’s seeing a good bit of people over the top of him. He’s seeing a bunch of two safeties, a corner short and a safety deep type of defenses. I don’t feel like he’s being held back right now.
Q: How often does what you see of the Patriots’ defense on film actually translate to what they show the next week?
A: It’s a great question and it’s one that we kind of lived first-hand when we played them in the Super Bowl (vs. Philadelphia Eagles). You prepare for 3-4 and they play even with two guys standing in the A gaps. They’re doing some of that now. It’s a multiple defense. He has the ability to play two defensive linemen and the rest linebackers in there. You’re going to get unscouted looks. Primarily they’re lining up with a 3-4 look. They have the ability to play a four-down package by putting their outside linebackers on the ground. You have to prepare for a number of different looks.
Q: Can you get more unscouted looks with the Patriots versus other teams?
A: You can. Wholesale-wise they do some different things. The illusion as they list the depth chart is 3-4, but they can kick it and play even just as easily if they feel like they need to.
Q: With the coverage Randy is getting, do you feel like other people are getting open?
A: I do. Obviously Percy’s had a few good games and good looks at the football. Shiancoe’s obviously spiked up here last week. You can’t serve all those masters in there. If somebody’s getting doubled, it means somebody’s singled usually.
Q: Can you talk about Percy’s play the last couple of weeks? He seems rejuvenated after so much went on in the offseason.
A: First of all I feel like he’s in good shape. He’s in football playing shape right now. He’s doing a variety of different things, which he’s good at. Whether he’s in the backfield or he’s playing in the slot or he’s playing outside. I think he’s got a decent feel for what he’s doing. He can go full speed. He’s not thinking about much. You see that at practice and practice is carried over to the games.
Q: When guys go back to play their former teams, they sometimes get overexcited. Is Moss the type of guy you have to do that with or do you not even bother having that conversation?
A: He’s very articulate. He spent time with our coaches yesterday and did a great job with both our offense and defensive coaches.
Q: As far as trying to help you prepare for the Patriots?
Q: Favre’s streak is such a unique circumstance. Do you look at things like that at all?
A: I think I said it the other day. We’ll do what’s best for us to win the football game on Sunday. That’s hands down what my motives will be.
Q: Did you ever think how you would handle the type of situation about ending his streak when you first pursued him?
A: You really don’t go get a guy and focus about what the end play is, how he’s going to die. That would be a little morbid, wouldn’t it? You’re talking about what’s going to finish. We’re talking about a streak, a number, and statistics.
Q: Did Moss give you more than most guys when playing a former team? Is he that football savvy?
A: He is. He did a good job. You never know what you’re going to get and how they have to play him. He at least had some insightfulness on both sides.
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2010
Q: How much does this situation remind you of 2000 when you played Tampa? Are there any parallels to that situation?
A: I would hope so. It’s hard to think back that far. I think I can point to different times in my career where I came back and played with whatever injury and was able to play well enough to help us win or give us a chance to win. That would be, not only that time but other times as well, my reasoning for wanting to play, my desire to play and not to mention being able to function. I would say right now, I don’t know. That would be me being honest. I broke my thumb, I can’t remember what year that was; first game back was against Minnesota here in the Dome. If you would have told me prior to, and still to this day it’s hard for me to imagine, a thrower who has a broken thumb on that hand would be able to function at a high level. For me, and as I tell a lot of guys, I’m willing to give it a try. I think back to all of those times where I said, ‘I’m willing to give it a try.’ Had I not, I wouldn’t have known what you are talking about, or when I played against Minnesota here, not only that game, but one of the best stretches of my career with a broken thumb in a splint. What does that mean for this week? I would say it is worth a try. Mid-foot sprain was very painful. This is a very similar injury, but you have to throw into the mix, basically a broken heel-bone is what it is, a calcaneus. Again I am assured it’s broken, but there is not a risk of further injury. Would it continue to be sore? Absolutely. That is kind of the way I am approaching it. I would love to play for no other reason than I’m in this and committed to this team. I would love to get us back on track and be a part of it and more than anything, function at a level that gives us a chance to win. That is basically it. If not,
Q: How will you come to the decision to play or not?
A: The thing is, Sunday I’m still going to have a broken bone in my foot. We know that. Whether I play or not, next week it will be sore. You would assume by not playing it will continue to get a little better each day. We’re going to continue to treat it and see how the symptoms change during the course of the week. I’ve always had a knack for healing, I think, quicker than maybe most people. Mentally I know, because I am going back in history, I have been able to play with different types of injuries that most people probably wouldn’t have attempted. That kind of gives me a little bit of hope. The fact that I have played maybe a quarter-and-a-half, maybe a bit longer the other night, gives me a little bit of hope as well. We’ll just kind of follow the symptoms and if the pain and swelling subsides, that will tell a lot. Maybe Friday, I don’t know yet, Friday just kind of see where we are. I don’t anticipate going through a full practice.
Q: What does your consecutive games started-streak mean to you?
A: All I can say is, ‘Wow.’ I kind of lost count a long time ago. I am very proud of the streak, but it probably should have ended a long time ago; numerous injuries, just something that I touched on. The only reason I would want to play (is to help us win). I don’t want to go out there for one play; I don’t want to go out there for three plays. If I am able to play, I want to play the whole game and give us a chance to win. I know it makes for good TV talking about the streak. Will it end? Will this be the injury that stops him? Whether it ends this week or whether it ends at the end of the year, it ends. I will always be proud of it. In the game of football every week it’s a crapshoot of injuries. I have been able to overcome a lot of injuries. I am thankful up to this point that I have been able to play however-many games in a row. It’s all about being able to help this team win and get us back on track. That’s the only thing I am concerned about.
Q: Will this be a mutual decision between you and Coach Childress?
A: Not real sure. I do know, as I tell guys, ‘No one knows your body like you know it. No one knows how much it will hinder you.’ Again, this is a little different injury. I don’t know how much it would affect me. I know it is worth considering to play. I will be honest with myself as well as with Brad when that time comes. As I stand here right now, I don’t know if that is pregame, I don’t know if it is right before kickoff or if it’s tomorrow. If tomorrow it feels better than today, then to me that is some hope. He’s the head coach, he makes those decisions. I would think that it would be an open-dialogue deal, ‘How do you feel? What do you think?’ You weigh the options.
Q: Do you feel any differently about your decision to come back this year now?
A: Nope. I said this weeks back, once I decided to come I knew that there were no guarantees. I would love to come in and have the same year as last year. Everyone’s hopes and expectations have been Super Bowl. That shouldn’t change. There is still a lot of football left. We have dug ourselves a hole here. We all know that, for whatever reason. I take as much responsibility as anyone. I’m not going to shy away from it. This could easily be an injury where I could say, ‘I’m going to slip under the radar. See you later, easy out.’ People may think that. I want to play and I want to help this team win. I owe that to the guys and I owe that to myself.
Q: Does this injury make you think about retirement?
A: No. Once again, I am more committed today than I was before the injury. I don’t want anyone to print, ‘Well he wasn’t committed last week.’ That’s not true. I am just saying it would be easy to walk away or take a step back. There is a chance I don’t play this week, no secret to anyone. I want to play. I want to do what I can this week to get myself ready to play. I know the bone will continue to be broken for quite a while. I have done it in the past. I think I can do it again. I just want to help this team get back on track. That’s what I came in here for, and for no other reason.
Q: How severe is this injury?
A: I saw the picture. I guess basically the heel-bone, and I don’t know how much Brad discussed it, but there is a clean break in the upper part of the calcaneus with a stress fracture down towards the bottom. Dr. Nielson, who performed the ankle surgery this offseason, along with Dr. Andrews, they for the most part agreed with the doctors here on what the injury is and what to expect from here on out. Talking to Dr. Neilson two nights ago, he said, ‘I’m not going to say you couldn’t play with this. I don’t know of any in recent memory, if any, that have played with it. Given the fact that you’ve played with a lot of different injuries, I’m not going to say that it can’t be done.’ I don’t even want to begin to point where it is and stuff. It seemed like a harmless tackle. I have had people say, ‘It didn’t look too bad.’ It’s just the way it got torqued and twisted. That’s why the bone was able to pop off the back-side of it. In talking with the doctors, I am a little optimistic about not further injuring it. It’s just more or less being able to tolerate the pain and how well I can function.
Q: Are you getting fitted with an orthotic or maybe getting a special type of shoe?
A: I am sure we will look into that. I am actually considering playing with this [points to boot]. We’ll see if we can put some screw-in cleats on it. Right now, if I had to guess, if I were to try and play I would wear a bigger shoe and do some type of splint or something. I’m just guessing. We haven’t really gotten that far yet. You would have to put added support there. You would wear a bigger shoe.
Q: Why do you feel like you can handle injuries better than most?
A: I must have. Either that or I am just a knucklehead, which a lot of people would probably agree with that anyway, either way. I just go back to my dad, who was always my baseball and football coach, I was no different than most kids. You fall down, you start crying, you want attention; I never got it from him. It was, ‘You’re not hurt.’ Ninety-nine-percent of the time he was right. I just learned that you just get up and play with it. That’s the way I was brought up and raised. I am sure several years down the road I’m going to go, ‘Look what the heck you have done.’ This week is not going to make much of a difference in the future, based on what I have done in the previous 19 years. I think God has blessed me with an ability, not that it doesn’t hurt, but to overcome it and mentally set it aside and focus on what I’m doing. A lot of luck along the way as well. It seemed harmless, and I have been tackled a lot harder and twisted around. It was just the way it happened. My mental state has always been after an injury to give it a try. It would be easy to say, ‘Just can’t do it.’ Once again, so many great things I have accomplished after injuries. Maybe not necessarily next week, but the whole year is basically to be willing to take it on. It’s not that it doesn’t hurt. I can’t say that this would hurt you more than it hurts me. I don’t know that. It would appear that way just based on what I have been able to overcome.
Q: What is your relationship with Coach Childress at this point?
A: I had heard about the post-game comments. I had actually heard about them before I went in. Every coach is different. Emotions run high for players and coaches. I can’t disagree with some of his comments. I’d be the first to tell you there are plays I should I have made, plays where maybe I should have read things differently. I can go back throughout my whole career and say that. We had a talk yesterday, not necessarily about that, but just injuries and things in general. I wanted to address to him that I would like to play or at least have that mindset as the week progresses. I think we have been able to talk about things. Do we necessarily agree? No, I think that is part of it. I think both of our intentions are to win. We got to get this on track. We know that. How we get there remains to be seen. As long as we are both focused on the right prize. I didn’t come here hoping to get along with Brad any more or less than I did last year or whatever. He’s the head coach; I’m the quarterback. I know what is expected of me. I don’t need him or anyone else to tell me that. My intentions are to do that and help this team win. That doesn’t mean we have to agree all of the time.
Q: Do you trust your ability to decide whether you are healthy enough to play or not?
A: I do. Once again, just going back throughout my career, if I think I can play and start the game, and the second quarter rolls around and we run a play that requires me to roll out or something and my mind tells me I can do it and the body doesn’t agree, then I would be the first to know that. You are not going to get all of those reps in practice. Mentally I think I can do it. I have done it before. Will it hurt? I am sure it will. I played the rest of that game the other night and had to move around some. Had I known I had a broken bone, there is probably a different mindset all of the sudden, ‘Oh, I have a broken bone. I can’t move on it.’ I have to keep that in mind. I know I will keep an open mind about it and be smart about it. I don’t want to go out and play just to play and look back and say, ‘I should have known better than I can’t make that play.’ I do know that if I didn’t have a hurt foot, I’m not going to rush for 50 yards and with a broken foot I’m not going to rush for 50 yards. We do know that. There are some limitations that really won’t change.
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2010
Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick
Q: Randy Moss’ return is going to draw a lot of attention. Do you feel that the conversations you had with him on the day he was traded left things on good terms?
A: On my end, absolutely. I have all the respect in the world for Randy. The things we talked about in my office the day we traded for him and he got here that Sunday of the Draft in 2007, he did every single thing that he said he would do. He tried his best to do it. I totally respect that.
Q: Do you feel like you got a complete effort out of him while he was there?
A: I think I said how I feel about Randy Moss.
Q: How did the offense change after trading Moss?
A: We’re still running our offense. Everybody’s learned it. We practiced it in training camp. We’re still trying to run it.
Q: Do you see teams approaching you differently on defense because you don’t have that vertical threat that Moss helped you with?
A: We’ve only played a couple of teams and they defended us the way they defended us. I think you have to ask them how they looked at it. We’ve seen a variety of different coverages and looks, man, zone, pressure, not pressure. We’ve seen a number of different things. I don’t know if you could put it all in one category and say this is all it’s been or this is all it hasn’t been.
Q: Do you proceed this week as if Brett Favre will play or do you just game plan for the scheme?
A: We’re prepared for everybody’s that on the active roster. Whoever’s playing, as we know that could change in a play or two anyway, so you have to be ready for everybody that’s on the active roster. Then once they’re out, whether they’re called out or they’re made inactive on game day then you can eliminate them. But until then you’ve got to prepare for everybody.
Q: Whether Brad Childress has to wait until Sunday to make the decision about Favre playing, there’s a lot of weight on it because he’s played 291 straight games. Can you sympathize with having to make that decision or can you relate to it at all?
A: Each situation’s different and I’ve been in situations similar to those but the dynamics of each one of them are different. I certainly wouldn’t have a very good perspective on another team or another player, players that I haven’t coached or anything like that. I really don’t know about all that. I think in the end the coach has to make whatever decision he makes, it has to be in the best interest of the football team. At least that’s what I would do. I would try to do what’s best for our football team. It encompasses a lot of things. It’s not a very necessarily a very straight-line decision. There can be a lot of factors and you have to just weight them and in the end decide and do what you think is best.
Q: Has coaching changed over the years? If so, how have you adjusted?
A: There’s been a lot of changes. Things have changed a lot. The world changes every year, it changes every week. There’s always a new set of circumstances, dynamics. The rules have changed; technology has changed. A lot of things are different. You’ve got to figure out a way within the context of whatever the framework is to do the best that you can with it.
Q: Is that what keeps you energized and keeps you going to add to your success?
A: I’m definitely challenged by the new situation every week. The preparation, the teaching, the game planning, breaking down our opponent and so forth. I enjoy the offseason part of it. The team building, some of the off-season studies that you do as a coach and try to find ways to improve. Basically, I just very much enjoy the game and the challenges of coaching, whether it be younger players, older players, the team building aspects of it that come from the draft and free agency and things like that. As well as the game day. All the preparation leads up to it. It’s exciting. It’s challenging. You’re going up against the best every single week. You’ve got to be at your best to just be competitive. I find it very challenging.
Q: In today’s NFL is the coach still an authority figure, or is it now more a partnership with players, especially the quarterback?
A: I think every player on the team has a certain amount of leadership. Every player, every coach is a shareholder in the team. We all have different jobs to do. None of us can do it by ourselves. No player, no coach, no couple players. It has to be a team effort. That comes from a lot of different angles, not just the players and the coaches but all the support staff that goes with it. I think that’s what a football team is. If you like a team… if you like working with a group of people that have a common goal to win than football is a good game to be in.
Q: What do you see overall of the Vikings on film this season?
A: A very talented team. There are a lot of outstanding plays. It’s easy to show a highlight film to your team of the great plays that the Vikings have made in all three phases of the game. They’re very impressive on special teams; physical, good coverage team. They really play with good discipline and leverage, tackle hard. A good return game; very explosive returners, especially Harvin, that goes without saying. Offensively they have a lot of playmakers. Defensively they have a lot of playmakers. We could rattle off 15, 20 guys. They had 10 guys in the Pro Bowl last year, plus Moss. Moss for Rice, but still it’s 10 guys there. 10 Pro Bowl players on one team, that’s a lot of talent. Several others that are amongst the best players at their position as well. They’re dangerous. I know they’ve had a couple games go against them. Every single game has come down to the last possession where they had a chance to win. It didn’t work out every time, but you can see how good and competitive they are and the things they’re capable of doing. One mistake and they can make you pay for it, no matter what phase of the game its in.
Q: What do you think of Brad Childress as a coach?
A: I think the Vikings had a great year last year. That’s a credit to the team, the coach, the organization; everybody involved with it.
Q: Can you use his comments about stealing signals last time [you played the Vikings in 2006]?
A: I’m just focused on this game, this week. I’m not too concerned about stuff that happened years ago or what’s going to happen in the months ahead. I’m worried about this week against the Vikings.
Q: Wes Welker said he couldn’t imagine you doing anything but coaching. How have you managed to avoid burnout as a coach?
A: I really can’t comment on what other coaches have done or felt. That’s definitely individual situations and individual decisions. As I said I enjoy it. I enjoy all the aspects of it; the preparation, the offseason, game day. Each year working with young players, new players coming into the league that really don’t know what they’re getting into or what this league’s about, to working with the Junior Seau’s that have been in the league forever and are great Hall of Fame players that have seen and done pretty much everything that a professional football player can do, and all the guys in between. It’s exciting to work with those players, the veteran ones, the young ones, go up against other great teams and try to compete on a week-to-week basis, year-to-year basis and stay competitive in this league. It’s hard to stay ahead of them. The salary cap, the draft situation, free agency and all that is geared towards keeping everybody on a level playing field. It’s hard to get past that. It’s actually hard to find anything besides the NFL that would provide some of the things I’ve talked about. I don’t know where else you would get that.
Q: Do you get excited to see a guy like Danny Woodhead? I imagine nobody thought he would be doing the things that he’s doing.
A: Well I don’t know. He made the Jets team. He made their roster; thought he had a good preseason. He had a heck of a college career. It was not a Division I [school], but there are a lot of NFL players that didn’t play at that level. We had Steve Neal, didn’t even play college football. Some guys develop later, some guys develop sooner and fizzle out. Some guys, like
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2010
Patriots Wide Receiver Wes Welker
Q: What was your general reaction when you learned that Randy Moss was being traded?
A: I was a little bit surprised. Obviously Randy is such a great player and such a great guy and everything like that. It is hard to go out there and play without that guy who has been here such a long time. At the same time, you trust in Coach Belichick and the decisions he makes and you roll with them and move on.
Q: How does Randy’s vertical threat impact coverages?
A: I think it keeps the defense honest and wanting to make sure he’s not going deep. You don’t know which play he’s going to all of a sudden take off on you. I definitely can put those safeties in check.
Q: How many teams do you think have the trust that your team does within its locker room and with the head coach?
A: That’s a huge thing. Obviously everything that Coach Belichick does, he’s doing what’s best for the team. You know that going in, just from the time that I have been here. In every scenario that we have ever had, that has been the case. You always just trust in it, believe in it, and just kind of roll with it.
Q: Was Randy’s relationship with coaches and within the locker room the same this year as it was in past years?
A: Yeah. Randy was always a great teammate and always a great player and always did a great job out there. We had some great years together. Unfortunately, it kind of came to an end. We’re moving on and moving past it.
Q: Did you sense when Randy came out and said he was unhappy with his contract that it would be the beginning of the end for him there?
A: I have no idea about that stuff. I didn’t really sense anything like that. It was all kind of a shock to everybody. You didn’t really know what was going on. We’re usually a pretty tight-lipped type team. It was definitely something a little different.
Q: What kind of reception do you think Randy will get from the fans in New England?
A: It’s tough to say. It could be 50-50. I think a lot of them will applaud him, just because he did such great things for this organization over the past three or four years. It’s hard not to still like the guy and respect what he did for us.
Q: How long do you think Belichick will coach?
A: I don’t know if he could do anything but coach. I don’t know what he would do if he didn’t have film to look at or something to do. Hopefully it’s for a long time, at least as long as I am here. I don’t know. You would have to ask him on how long he really plans on it.
Q: Why do you think Coach Belichick has been so successful over time?
A: I think he is very detailed. I think he does a very good job of stating out the obvious. A lot of times I think you just go out there and play and you don’t really pay attention to the details of what the team is really trying to do and how we need to play them. He does a good job of explaining that to us and coaching us and in that way each week to get ready for whichever opponent we’re playing.
Q: How often does he (Belichick) surprise you?
A: I personally kind of like it. Usually whenever he does something I feel like I have a little bit of a river-boat gambler tendency to me too. I kind of like it personally. Whatever he calls, we just have to go out there and execute and try to finish games.
Q: How close are you to being where you want to be coming off the injury?
A: I think we’re getting there. It’s a slow process. Every week is a little bit better and we’re still a little ways off. At the same time I have my good days, where I feel like everything is going to be back. I have my bad days as well. We’re slowly getting there.
Q: What do you think of Danny Woodhead?
A: It’s kind of encouraging for me to see somebody like that. He’s obviously done a great job for us and really coming in. He doesn’t look like much, but neither do I. He gets up there and gets the job done and plays well. We’re happy to have him.
Q: What are your thoughts when you see the Vikings on film?
A: They are fast. They fly around to the ball really well. Their line gets really good penetration. They have some good ball players, who really fly around to the ball and really try and get after the ball and strip it and try and do everything else to cause turnovers. They cause a lot of havoc. They are definitely guys that you can’t take a play off with and make sure that you are top of everything they are trying to do.
Q: Would you consider yourself and Woodhead ‘Belichick players’?
A: I think he finds guys that fit roles for us. Obviously Danny fits a good role for us and a back that can run the ball and also be a pass catcher and everything like that. I think he really looks at a player like how we can use them and how we can use his strengths out there on the field.
Q: Do you anticipate Brett Favre being out there playing on Sunday?
A: I would. The guy has a history of always being out there. I would expect him to be out there.
Q: How much talk has there been in your locker room about Coach Childress’ comments on stealing signals?
A: None. We haven’t discussed it at all or anything like that. We’re just kind of focused on us and going out there and trying to play a good game on Sunday.
Q: How does Coach Belichick manage to keep you guys so ‘tight-lipped’?
A: I think he kind of tell us, ‘We’re not talking about this stuff. We’re not talking about that stuff. We’re focused on this week. We’re focused on this team.’ That’s our deal from week to week. He kind of warns us before and lets us know the questions we’re going to get and making sure that we’re keeping a level head on what we have to do from week-to-week.