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Quotable: Head Coach Mike Smith


Q: Can you speak on the most current roster moves?
A: "Well, we released D.J. (Shockley) off of our practice squad and signed Antone Smith. It was a decision that we made because we felt that it gave us the best combination of players on the practice squad to get prepared this week."

Q: What was impressive about Antone Smith?A: "Well, he is a strong, fast and urgent running back. He's had some opportunities and been on practice squads with other teams. We had a workout and we felt like he gave us the best opportunity to get somebody in here to help us."

Q: What did you learn after today about your defensive back situation?
A: "Well again, we had Chevis (Jackson) out there working in our nickel back. He was the guy who started there all last season. We just rotated the new guy in (Jamaal Fudge). Were trying to get a rotation and just get prepared because of the loss of Brian (Williams) we've got to have contingency plans in the secondary."

Q: Defensively, what do you feel like you have to stop: the running game or the short passing game that turns into those big plays?A: "Well they're a very efficient running team. They're averaging 161 yards. They've got three big backs that have good speed, and then the other thing that they've done is they've had some explosive passes. They've got three passes for touchdowns over 60 yards. They've got a 60 yarder, a 66 yarder and I believe an 86 or an 80 yarder. So they can throw the ball down the field and you don't want to get that quarterback going, but the core of their offense is the running game."

Q: And a lot of that is yards after the catch to right? You've got to tackle well.
A: "That is correct. You've got to tackle well, and we've got to make sure that we leverage the football and keep the game to a minimum."

Q: How's Miles Austin look to you?
A: "That Kansas City game with 250 reception yards was unbelievable. He's a big, strong, fast wide receiver. They've got Roy Williams, of course, their number one receiver who's going to be back and healthy. Patrick Crayton is a good receiver and I like Sam Hurd. They've got four wide outs and you can't disregard their tight end. A guy who's been to the Pro Bowl, Jason Witten, a good guy that can run block and catch can create mismatches."

Q: Additional concerns with Witten the way Greg Olsen got a couple plays?
A: "Yeah, Greg Olsen got some good plays. We're getting our string here of four games against good tight ends. He's just another one in the string, with San Francisco two weeks ago, and then this past week Olsen and then we're getting Jason. They seem to be getting better each week. It will be a challenge. We have to make sure we're getting the proper matches and make sure we don't put ourselves in a disadvantage."

Q: Can you update us on your backs Jerious and Ovie?
A: "Well, we're hoping we can get Ovie out here to move around a little bit and Jerious is day to day. Both of them didn't participate today and we're just working to get them back out here as quick as we can."

Q: Coach you haven't had any flagrant fouls this year. How do you stay away from them, coaching to play to the whistle, but not crossing the line?
A: "Well, we always talk about being right on that line. I think that we've had two personal foul penalties in the first five games, but I don't think that anything we've done has been flagrant. You're just talking to the guys all the time about playing hard and playing right on the edge because it is a physical and violent game."

Q: So should we expect that sometime it might go over? We've been seeing that the last couple of weeks in the league.
A: "Well I certainly hope that we don't go over the edge, in terms of it. We're a physical football team that prides itself on being physical, but certainly aren't a dirty football team."

Q: The opening drives this year has been two field goals, two three and outs, and one first down and out. What's happening there?
A: "Well, we pride ourselves in starting fast and we haven't been as fast starting as we would like to be. It's something that we're always addressing. This team that we're about to play has only given up ten points in the first quarter defensively, so they're an outstanding team in the first quarter. So it's going to be a big challenge for us, but it's something that we've said from the very beginning. We've talked about being a physical football team, running the football and starting fast. It's something that on both sides of the football we feel like we can improve and it's something that we've been addressing all season long."

Q: How much do you coach against the fact that Keith Brooking is down that and could be spreading some nuggets of information around?
A: "Well, Keith did a great job for us last year, and again the playbooks change from year to year. We've just got to prepare, we will always face guys that have been in our system or have known some of the inner-workings of our defense or our offense. I think that's a pretty common place in this league. As much as the rosters change year to year when teams recalibrate not only year to year, but sometimes week to week. Especially this time of the year when you get into the injury situation."

Q: Talk about bringing Jamaal Fudge back. He played on special teams for you and got a start last season. What do you expect out of him?
A: "We're hoping that Jamal can give us some depth there at the safety position. William Moore, unfortunately, had a hamstring injury there in the game on Sunday night. With Brian going down, there's some flexibility with Jamal. Jamal knows our system. He's played multiple positions both strong and free safety and also in the preseason worked as a nickel back. So, he gives us some flexibility, and at this time of year you've got to have contingency plans when you're putting your 45-man roster together."

Q: What's William Moore's status?
A: "William has a pulled hamstring and again I can't say that he'll be ready to go this week, but we're going to get him back out here as quick as we can."

Q: You were talking about on Monday special teams is a unit that has been hurt by injuries. Is Fudge going to help there to?
A: "Yeah, Jamal can help on special teams. Again, when you have injuries and they're not necessarily in the special teams, but they happen at the top of the roster. There's a trickle down affect and there's a cumulative effect that affects your entire football team. So, there's going to have to be guys that are going to have to spend extra duty on special teams and we're going to have to make sure we've got guys crossed trained. So during the game if there's a situation that arises, they can handle the needs of the special teams units.

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