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Old 11-26-2008, 05:49 PM  
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Q&A with HERM EDWARDS - 11/26

Q&A with HERM EDWARDS - 11/26

Nov 26, 2008, 3:23:28 PM


Q: Any new additions to your roster this week?

HERM EDWARDS: “No new ones - first week in a little while. That’s a good thing for us in that no one’s really banged up that bad where we have to make any roster moves.”

Q: Do you think that helps?

EDWARDS: “It always helps when you have the same guys playing every week, especially at certain positions. That’s what has happened at the quarterback position and our offense. I think after Tyler’s taken the helm as the starting quarterback we’ve been more consistent. Hopefully, the same thing will happen with the defense and these linebackers get healthy and some of our defensive linemen get healthy.”

Q: How much has your long-range program of rebuilding been set back by all the injuries you’ve suffered?

EDWARDS: “I think what happens to you is when you go into a game and you’re missing some players it always hurts you some. But I think the program is still intact and going where it’s going. The thing you don’t like is if you get guys like Tank Tyler, who all of a sudden is out today, and he can’t practice. When guys can’t practice they have to take live reps during the game. It’s not like he has a lot of live experience to sit there on the sideline and not practice.

“When you lose a guy like Turk McBride for the whole year that affects that position. That’s what has kind of happened to us. It’s been different positions that have hurt, more on defense than on offense. On offense it was quarterback for a while. We got that settled down but defensively it’s been the linebacker position some and at corner and our defensive line. That’s never good when you’re missing guys.”

Q: Like what happened to a guy like Brandon Flowers who’s missing and he’s a young guy who is still developing. That’s got to be a setback for him.

EDWARDS: “It is, but he’s back. When you think about it you would never imagine going into the season where we would have three rookie corners that are basically starters now, whether they play nickel or are starting at corner. One of them has 700 snaps – Brandon Carr – and Flowers has over 500 snaps, having missed some, and Leggett has 400 snaps already. So they’re getting a lot of game experience. That’s the difference. It’s one thing to be in the league and another to gain game experience. They’re gaining game experience. It helps this football team.”

Q: Carr may have more snaps than another defensive player ?

EDWARDS: “More snaps than the whole defense: 789 including special teams.”

Q: Alfonso Boone has been one of your more versatile players. Do you like the chance of him playing this week? What does he bring with that versatility to play different positions?

EDWARDS: “Sure has. I think he’ll be alright. He saved us when you think about it when we were down all those ends. We have two ends now who weren’t here and they’re playing in rotation. All of a sudden you lose a starting end and Tamba (Hali) was hurt and he had to go play end. That helps you when you have a guy who is versatile to play positions and it takes a different kind of guy to be able to do that.”

Q: He had to make the transition from being a starter to being a rotation guy. How did he take that?

EDWARDS: “It’s tough but he was in that role before in Chicago. With the improvement of our young guys and the way we see the future we just felt these guys had to play and we didn’t want to retard their ability to play. Now, there is a pretty good rotation now and that’s helped us along with having Ron Edwards. They were our two starters last year.”

Q: How did Turk McBride play before he was hurt?

EDWARDS: “He was coming along fine and you’re talking about a guy who the prior year was rotated in – he and Tank. Now all of a sudden he’s playing 40 instead of 20 snaps and it’s a whole different mindset.”

Q: To what extent are Dustin Colquitt’s injuries affecting his punting?

EDWARDS: “Little bit with a groin. He’s fighting through it and that’s a testament to him, how mentally tough he is and especially when he’s a kicker.”

Q: Does Tyler Thigpen have a different demeanor this week given his performance last week?

EDWARDS: “I think he still has confidence but now he’s got to go play. What makes it a little tougher on him this week is these guys are very good on defense – on the back and front ends. They can rush the quarterback and they’ve got fast linebackers and play a lot of man-for-man coverage. So, he’s going to have to be very accurate with the football because they do a very good job of covering guys. If you were at our last game that’s what they did to us. We didn’t move the ball a whole lot.

“Now, we have a different offense. We have had three quarterbacks playing and we’re a little bit different that way. But they do a good job of covering people and they’re built for that. They’ve got fast corners and fast linebackers and they can play you man-to-man.”

Q: Do they play more man than most teams do?

EDWARDS: “Yeah, yeah. It’s probably 60 to 65% man.”

Q: Are they much different than the last time you played them?

EDWARDS: “In this sense: they feel good about running the ball and they’re bringing the quarterback along slowly. They’re going to try and run the ball and think about last week where they beat Denver in Denver. They basically kept the score down because their defense doesn’t give up a lot of points. They can play you tight coverage and they ran the ball, I think, 41 times and only threw it 11 times. They’re that way and they’ve had a coaching change. They’re very athletic. That’s one thing about the Raiders: they’re very athletic through their history. And, they’ve got speed.”

Q: What’s the mindset of your team in general? Is it different this week after the near misses the prior four weeks?

EDWARDS: “They’re disappointed in how we played and the fact that we didn’t give ourselves a chance. We turned the ball over too much.

“We’ve got to find a way to win games so that when we get in that position again where it’s tight we’ve got to find a way to make a play or two to win the game.”

Q: Is this one of those games where you can learn something more about this team, because of their youth and what happened last week?

EDWARDS: “Yeah, how they bounce back. Now, it’s on the road. It’ll be fun for us and I think it’ll be a fun trip for us. We go out there and face a division opponent that just won a big game on the road and they beat you at home. You’ll find a lot about our football team. It’s another growing situation.”

Q: You have a different team than the one you took there last year. Could you have possibly envisioned how much you’ve changed since the last time you visited Oakland?

EDWARDS: “No, but now we have another opportunity.”
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