Coach Mularkey's Monday Media Transcript



(on quarterback Marcus Mariota's shoulder injury)

No, I just heard that. We had him checked out medically by our staff. He's got a sore shoulder, a little bit of a mild ankle sprain. But with the way we're going to practice this week, I have to see how he goes through the walk through tonight, but he'll be taking all the reps tonight. We had him thoroughly checked out.

(on if the evaluation of Marcus Mariota's shoulder came back with anything worrisome)


(on what he expects wide receiver for Corey Davis to improve on, and on Davis' first two games back from injury)

I think every game's going to be a great learning experience for him. There's nothing better to teach from than these games and this tape. He did a little better than he did the first game, still has some things he needs to clean up. Obviously, he took a lot of reps yesterday, there's nothing negative about him getting the work that he's getting, it's just going to let him become a better player with the experience.

(on how tight end Delanie Walker is doing)

Delanie (Walker) has got a wrist, and other than that he should be fine as well for this game. He'll be limited tonight.

(on how tight end Delanie Walker's ankle is doing)


(on if he expects Delanie Walker 'to be himself' on Thursday night)

I do, I expect him (to). We do a great job of monitoring our players and they do a very good job of it themselves of taking care of themselves with the treatment and everything we provide here. Our training staff does an amazing job with them.

(on if he expects guard Quinton Spain to play this Thursday)

Yeah, I think so. We have an extensive walk through tonight, pretty good practice tomorrow. Right now we're anticipating him being full for practice tomorrow but again we'll see how he makes it through the walk through tonight.

(on the short week)

It's about recovery, especially offensive players played 91 snaps yesterday, week before the defense played 84, I think was the number, it was in the 80s, that's a lot of snaps. We've just got to make sure that, not only ourselves, but the players themselves have to take care of their bodies and make sure they're rested, when they get a chance take rest and hydrate. Obviously, practices are changed up with the formats and how we have to go about our business. It's about recovery for our players.

(on how many snaps cornerback Adoree' Jackson took on offense yesterday and if they have to be careful with how much they use him on offense)

Half a dozen snaps. We're not going to overwork him with doing both sides by any means, no.

(on if there is a number of offensive snaps that they're trying to get Adoree' Jackson each week)

No, there's no number, whatever we feel like is the best way to attack the opponent. If it works and we think it'll work again, we'll do it again, but no, there's no set number going into a game.

(on the team's success in the red zone since coming back from the bye week)

Just execution by everybody. It's just amazing, proof is in the tape that when we get all guys operating and doing their job efficiently, we're pretty effective, and not just in the red zone, I'm talking about putting drives together for scores. It's been very easy for us to teach off of game tape. They've been really efficient down in the red zone by not making very many mistakes and then making plays when we have to make some plays down there.

(on if there is a mindset change going on the road)

No, the focus is on this game. They're going to get about a two-minute overview of yesterday and then we're right into Pittsburgh. It's a short week for both teams, both teams will be well prepared in the short time, we've done this before. There's no mindset, guys have just got to take care of their body when their not here to get ready for a short week.

(on he, offensive line coach Russ Grimm and assistant head coach/defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau returning to Pittsburgh)

No, I think it's about the game. I've been back there a number of times since I coached and played there. Should be a good environment for Thursday Night Football, but it's about winning a game, that's all that matters.

(on what about Pittsburgh makes it difficult to play there)

I think they take a lot of pride in that place, defending their home, just like we are. That's what our intent is - make it very hard when you come in here to play. The crowd is well into it, especially for a night game, they're there all day getting ready for it, if you know what I mean. It's a fun environment. They play well at home.

(on Adoree' Jackson's eagerness to play on offense)

He loves football, he likes the opportunity to make plays. He hasn't come to us and said, 'Hey, I need to,' we've included him. He hasn't asked for more, we've gone to him and said, 'Hey, we have an idea here or there and (would) like to get you involved.' He's very smart and been able to handle everything that he has to handle. It makes it easy for him. We're not going to overload him, I promise that.

(on if a short week is more difficult for the road team due to travel taking away time)

Only if we let it be, if we let that become a distraction, it can be, yes. This team's pretty mature and pretty good about handling different situations and this won't be any different. It can be if you let it.

(on if some of the sacks in yesterday's game that Marcus Mariota took were due to the coverage)

A little bit of that. There was some breakdowns as well, but a little bit of the coverage was part of it.

*(on if separation is an issue for the offensive players) *We've got to get better, there's no doubt about it. We're trying to help them with some of the scheming we're doing to try to get some off-coverage. But yeah, we'd like, obviously, to get a little more open but our guys are making some good plays for us when it counts. We had a drop obviously, but Rishard (Matthews) made some good catches as well.

(on if wide receiver Eric Decker calling a timeout after making a catch and wide receiver Taywan Taylor making a catch 'on the stripes' is an example of veteran against rookie experience)

Yeah and we have a yard line that we designate to go down. If anybody would have caught it, they would have gone down the same spot. But standing out of bounds, even getting close to – that's definitely a rookie error that hopefully he's learned from.

(on the challenges the Steelers present)

A lot of explosive players offensively. Leading rusher, leading pass receiver, quarterback is playing very good, physical offensive line, know the defense pretty well, playing the No. 2 in the NFL right now. Their pass defense is their rush, you've got to block these guys. They've got a complicated scheme like we do. Got our hands full coming.

(on what happened on the play Marcus Mariota threw an interception on)

Just some things that we've got to do better execution-wise, all the way around.

*(on if the hit Delanie Walker took that injured his wrist looked malicious to him) *I think to me, anytime you hit a defenseless player, it's malicious. He was defenseless, his defender knew he didn't have the ball. It's like a free shot. We're trying to protect players, that's all we keep talking about and then that happens. At some point, that will be addressed at the owner's meetings. We've got to do something about it. If we really want to protect them, we need to start throwing the flags on those plays.

(on how safety Da'Norris Searcy is doing today)

He's good.

(on if he sees Da'Norris Searcy being limited in practice this week)


(on if any additional injuries were sustained by the team)

No, nothing that should hold us back from being at full strength unless something comes up during the week.

(on how much third down success on both sides of the ball helps the team)

You get to keep it for 40 minutes and they only get it for 20. You sustain drives and they don't. We've been on the other end of that a number of times this year, and you can see what happens. It creates longer drives. We should have had two more scores yesterday, we would've put more points up if we'd executed to finish plays. But, it does. It allows you to keep the football away from the opponents which is a big thing.

(on how he balances letting Marcus Mariota play instinctively and keeping him out of physical danger)

You've got to think about – the ones we've designed, he hasn't been, there hasn't been any problems. It's when he's having to escape out of the pocket or in the pocket, it's been all about dropback passes. So, I don't know how you can change anything, he's got to do that to help us win games. We've got to dropback to throw the football, we've got to protect him.

(on what went through his mind as he thanked veterans on the field prior to the second half starting)

I thought it was important to them that they knew, we knew they were there. I wanted to recognize them. The second half was going to be played no matter what I did, and I thought it was important they knew at least I represented our team to come over there and shake their hand. Glad they were there and appreciate what they've done, and their service to our country. I thought it was the best five minutes of my game.

(on if he's ever been around a player before like Marcus Mariota who has such importance to the outcome of the team's games)

Yeah, I've been around a lot. There's a lot of those guys. You don't want to see anybody get hurt, any injury is an impact on your team, it really is.

(on how running back DeMarco Murray's ability to block factors into the number of snaps he's on the field for)

I think that's important. It's one of his strengths, his protections, his ability to – that touchdown was great proof of what he can do with the ball in his hands in a tight space, and a big play needed. He made it, but that has a lot to do with why he is the player that he is.

(on if Marcus Mariota went through a concussion test yesterday)

No he didn't, he didn't have to. We did everything we could to check everything out, make sure he was fine. We do that with every player that gets injured during the game.  *

The Tennessee Titans take on the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 10 at Nissan Stadium. (Photos: Donn Jones, AP)

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