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Full Shanahan Press Conference Transcript

Posted Apr 27, 2013

Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan addressed the media following the 2013 NFL Draft. Here is a complete transcript of his address.

On the third day of the draft:

“Well, first thing, when you get done with the draft, you’re trying to look for some depth and some competition for your football team and I thought we were able to do that today. I felt good about the guys we did get. What it does is it gives guys a chance to compete against one another. We’re a better football team today than we were yesterday. I thought the draft went well.”

 

On addressing the secondary:

“You take a look at [David] Amerson, we talked a little bit about him yesterday, but here’s a corner that’s got some pretty good speed, good length. He’s come up with some big interceptions throughout his career. We had a couple safeties with Phillip Thomas and [Bacarri] Rambo and two guys that played the free safety position but also played the strong safety position as well. And we felt like we needed some depth and some competition at those positions so we helped ourselves out there.”

 

On if he sees Bacarri Rambo as a free or strong safety:

“Our safeties are interchangeable. I think he could play either one. He has played either one. I think he’s probably more comfortable at the free safety position but we interchange them quite a bit.”

 

On picking players that may have dropped because of injuries or other issues:

“Sometimes it’s not only one round but sometimes it’s two or three, or three or four. At the end of the day, I had a great feeling about our draft. You don’t have great feelings all the time; you just miss a guy here or there. We were lucky enough in this draft to get the majority of the guys we wanted and that doesn’t happen very often because a lot of the time your position needs just doesn’t coincide with the way guys come off the board. So overall I was pleased.”

 

On not filling other potential position needs:

“Well, you’ve only got so many draft choices. You take a look at the depth of your football team. You can take a look at the offensive line – I think we addressed that a little bit in free agency. You have to have guys that when you do draft them, you think they’re going to make your football team. If not, you just don’t add bodies to add bodies, so I felt pretty good about that.  Inside linebacker position – you’d always like to have depth there as well. We’ve got some pretty good players there. Like you said, there are always a number of guys we have draftable that we’ll try to sign over the next hour, hour in a half. A lot of times those guys become part of your football team as they have in the past. We’ve still got a lot of work to do after the draft. We’ve got a number of guys targeted, a number of guys that we had draftable that we’ll add to our football team and add depth.”

 

On safety Phillip Thomas:

“He does a great job adjusting to the football. He had a lot of interceptions. That was one key. The next key is that he’s not afraid to hit people. He would support the run. He had a good feel. He played a lot of different coverages that we play. We did meet with him and he was very quick mentally. We think he’ll adjust very quickly to our system. A very similar system at college to what we run here.”

 

 

 

On Thomas being able to compete for a starting job:

“I think that’s what you expect and what you’re hoping for. It doesn’t always happen that way. If they can’t start you hope that eventually they are ready or can help out on special teams. But, some guys can pick things up fairly quickly. I think for a guy like Phillip Thomas it’ll be a little bit easier because he ran a very similar system to what we have.  But you never know for sure until they get out here and start working out. But, we feel good with the guy we signed.”

 

On who is the first-string safety opposite Brandon Meriweather:

“Oh, I don’t know. That will play out in time. We’ve got a lot of guys competing and that’s what you like. We’ve talked about that from day one. We love competition. When you’ve got competition it doesn’t matter if you are a first-year player, second-year player, or 15th-year player. You’ve got to go out there and prove it every day, every game each week. To me, when you have healthy competition it gives you a chance to get better.”

 

On safety Jordan Bernstine’s rehab from last season’s knee injury:

“Well, Jordan’s working out extremely well. I mean, he had a very serious knee injury and he’s bucked the odds already. He’s ahead of where the doctors thought he would be and that’s a big plus for him.  It gives you an idea of how hard he’s been working. Will he be ready for the first day of the season? I can’t tell you for sure. He’s made drastic improvements from a year ago.”

 

On board placement of linebacker Brandon Jenkins:

“We had him ranked fairly high. I thought last season he played extremely well. Would he have gone in the first round or second round if not for the injury? I don’t know, but he was impressive.”

 

On what stood out about Rambo:

“Just the way he played the game. You can tell he’s a tremendous athlete, former quarterback. Just a guy that has great intangibles and made plays all over the football field. I think his game will just get better and better.”

 

On concerns with Rambo’s suspensions:

“We do a lot of background checks. We talk to him, coaches and head coaches. If we don’t feel comfortable with somebody, we don’t sign him and we felt very comfortable with him.”

 

On running back Chris Thompson’s role:

“I think Chris is a guy that could excel against nickel defenses. He could be that third-down back. He’s got great hands. He’s got great elusiveness. He averaged a little over 7.5 yards per carry in his last year. He’s the type of guy, I think, that can do it all. You’d always like to have a couple backs that complement each other and I think he’ll complement a lot of our running backs and what they do.”

 

On running back Jawan Jamison:

"Jamison is a guy that I thought would be going much earlier. We weren't really looking for that running back in that seventh round, but when he was there, we just thought he was too good to pass up. Very similar to different players we've talked about in the past. When a guy is in the seventh round that you ranked much higher, we thought he could do a lot of the same things. Not only could he excel in the nickel package, but he could be a first-down runner as well. He's only a little over 5' 7", but he's well over 200 pounds and he's had some big runs in his conference throughout his career."

 

On the interception production of the defensive back picks:

"We've talked about turnovers since I've been here. Usually the team that excels in turnovers, they win championships. If it's not Super Bowls, it's getting into the playoffs. That will always be an emphasis on offense and defense. These guys have come up with a lot of turnovers, one of the reasons they were drafted where they were."

 

On the lack of trades in this draft because of the good players available:

"That's a good observation. A lot of times the guy's not there and you move back five, ten picks and you pick up an extra pick. This year, when it was our pick, we had a guy in mind and that guy was available. It doesn't always turn out that way. Sometimes you do move up, but we didn't feel like we had enough draft picks to do that. We needed to fill a few holes and we were able to do that."

 

On if it felt weird not drafting an offensive lineman:

"You know it really didn't. But when we first got here, we needed depth in the offensive line and defensive line. Going into this draft, I thought we had depth at both, at the defensive line and the offensive line. You take ten or 11 guys that you feel can compete at a position in your offensive line then you've got some great competition and that's what you look for. And the defensive line, anytime you are three or four deep and you've been working on that for a couple of years, able to keep those players, that's some really healthy competition. So I think we'll get better as a football team."

 

On the new additions to the secondary:

"You're always looking for guys that can catch a football, but you're looking for speed, you're looking for, in the safety position, a guy that's physical, a guy that can catch a football. More importantly I think we got a little bit more flexibility. You got a guy like [cornerback E.J.] Biggers and a guy like Amerson, you’ve got the flexibility with a guy like D-Hall [DeAngelo Hall]. I like [cornerback] Josh Wilson to work inside as well. So, we’ve still got speed on the outside, a little bit more flexibility on the inside with our nickel and dime packages, combined with our two new safeties and the possibility of Brandon Meriweather coming back full speed. There's Tanard Jackon, Pugh, Murphy, we got a lot of guys that are competing and that's what gives you a chance."

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