Coach Munchak's Thursday Practice Report

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HEAD COACH MIKE MUNCHAK

(on Kendall Wright potentially hurting his shoulder in practice)

Just probably what you already heard.  His shoulder's sore from falling on it.  He went for a ball, trying to make a play.  That's kind of in his DNA to go try to catch every ball and one that he probably should have just let go, and he ended up falling on his shoulder.  I didn't see it…He just fell on his shoulder and is sore.

(on if Wright will have an MRI)

The usual, yeah, like everyone does.  We'll just check him out—an X-ray, an MRI just to see what's going on there.  Then we'll know more tomorrow.

(on if there is early concern with Wright's shoulder)

No.  I think it's more of a positive thing that it's not something that would be a concern.  You don't want anyone to get hurt, obviously, but from what we can tell, it's not something that's going to be long-term.

(on the difficulty of trying to make plays without putting yourself at risk)

It is.  That's how it is even with the secondary, which I think does a great job.  They've done a great job in this camp of pulling off balls that they may have ran into—because they're trying to make plays, and they've done a great job of pulling off balls.  We really haven't had any collisions at all with the receivers and the DBs during a lot of seven-on-seven and the passing (drills).  That's why I think it's been so productive, but occasionally you're going to have something, where, he could have done that maybe 10 times and didn't get hurt.  I guarantee you he's done that probably five or six times since he's been here, and no problem.  So it's something he's probably going to do again.  If he misses a little time over it, I'm sure he comes back.  It's just something that, when the ball's in the air, he feels he can catch everything.  So you try to get smart when you can, cut back on some of the balls that you have to let go, but he'll be alright.

(on if Wright needs to be told to not try to catch everything right now)

You tell guys.  You're always repeating.  Your coaches are; we are.  You can't…Like I said, it's football; things happen.  He's probably been on the ground numerous times because of his own doing, trying to make a play.  So yeah, you remind guys, just like I would at the DB spot, or the (offensive) linemen or D-linemen.  Be smart, but things happen.  That could have happened and nobody would have thought anything when he got up and ran back to the huddle.  It wouldn't have crossed anyone's mind that he did something he shouldn't have done, but then when someone gets hurt, you start thinking, 'What happened?'  But again, we assume he'll be fine.

(on how Kenny Britt appeared running sprints)

I saw he was out here, but obviously I'm not studying (or) watching him right now.  We're watching practice.  That's something I'll get to see more of him as we finish up next week.  But it's encouraging.  I know it's good for his peace of mind to be out here running again after his little break because of the surgery.  That's a good thing, and hopefully that will lead to him having a great month and be ready to help us in July.

(on Britt doing some cutting while running today)

I think it's one of those things where you just don't know with a knee.  I've had knee problems also, and until you get out on the grass and start moving around, some days you feel better and so you push a little bit more.  It's hard.  People ask, and everyone wants to know a timetable—'When's he going to be able to do this?  When's he going to be able to do that.'  I just think it changes so much from week to week and day to day.  There's a setback here and there, but for the most part, we feel there's no roadblocks ahead.  It's just a matter of some time—more time, hard work.  We should have enough time ahead of us to where he's able to help us when training camp gets going.

(on if the team has more flexibility with what they can do next week during the minicamp)

Not a whole lot.  Yes, I can do more.  We can be out here, like training camp, in a two-a-day situation, even though you can't wear helmets twice and the other practice is a walk-through.  But no, I think we'll do something very similar to what we're doing here.  All the field rules are exactly the same, other than the fact that we can be out here longer if we want.  I think we're getting a lot of work done in the timeframe we're out here, and so it'll be very similar next week.

(on why they will not do everything they are permitted to do)

I think we've been working so well, and the attendance has been so good from when the program started eight weeks ago.  We pretty much have a week left.  I just didn't feel it was necessary.  To me, if I felt it was necessary, that we needed to take more time, that the time would be beneficial, then I would do it.  But I don't think it really is.  I think we've really covered a lot of ground, done a lot of things, and so if we keep on pace, have a good day tomorrow and finish up next week, that's more than enough time to cover the things we have.  That was an easy decision.

(on how difficult it is for the offensive linemen to work on technique during OTAs)

If you use your hands and are smart about it you can still get a lot of footwork done.  A lot of it is recognition and reaction also still when you are doing some blitz periods with the defense.  As you can see the veterans and most of the guys are learning very well how to go pretty much full speed without having all that contact.  So you do get some good stuff, some good work done.  There is no doubt it is not the same as when you have pads on and getting your pad level down and things like that.  That comes in the next phase which will be camp.  They still get a lot of work done, a lot of assignments and a lot of mental work, but it is a lot of physical work out here.  They are going at a pretty good pace and they are good enough athletes where they can go at that pace and avoid the contact.  That has been a good thing.  I think that is what is good about the way the rules are, you don't want these guys banged up.  You don't want these guys running haphazardly and running into each other and hitting each other in the shoulders and doing those things.  I think we have learned really quickly how to practice and be productive.  Like you said, O-line and D-line and linebackers when you can start tackling and you can really go hit the back, will be things we have to wait to do until next month.

(on the heat at practice)

It has been good because we have had a hot day and then kind of a cloudy day and another humid day today.  I think it is great.  I think it is something that helps all of us and the coaches to get used to this weather and being out here.  Even though there is not a whole lot of two-a-days anymore when you are doing this, being out here a couple of hours still tests your conditioning.  So yeah it is good for us, assuming it is going to be this way in September.

(on the addition of Jon Cooper)

He is a smart kid.  He came and worked out last week and we liked what we saw.  It just gave us another guy that we feel can play a couple of spots.  We have had a couple guys nicked up with the young guys we have brought in and haven't been able to practice.  We were concerned for that and making sure we had enough depth.  You don't want to wait until training camp to add another player because then he is so far behind.  You want him to help you in those preseason games, so Cooper is a guy we feel that has been around the league a little bit and would be comfortable going in and playing in those kind of games at a quick pace.  We wanted to get him in this week, so that way in training camp he can help us out.

(on Jon Cooper playing with Steve Hutchinson)

Yeah we talked to him some when we had him in to just get a feel for how he was.  That was encouraging.  Like I said, there is not a whole lot of guys out there that fit certain things you are looking for that can play a couple spots and we have done that over the years.  This time of year and during camp we have brought in some guys that had some game experience and older, guys that maybe didn't play a lot of football but were guys that could help you more in the preseason.

(on what positions Jon Cooper has played)

He played center and guard.  He is probably more comfortable as a center than a guard, but he has played both and that is what we were looking for, someone that had comfort.  There is nothing worse than someone saying he can play guard, but he never did or he can play center but he never actually did that.  For a young guy, I call him young but he has been around a few years, he is a guy that we feel can come in and really do that for us.  Depending on what happens with our offensive line and getting reps, you want to have some alternatives as we go into camp, especially if you get a guy or two hurt.  When you are playing both quarterbacks and you want to get a lot of reps with your top two quarterbacks in preseason, you want to make sure you have a good line in front of them.

(on having Michael Griffin here throughout the offseason)

It has been great.  His attitude has been awesome since the beginning.  He is always here and he loves being here.  He is one of those guys that will come out for special teams and he is not even on the special teams.  He wants to help the coach get involved.  I think he would like to come out and help coach.  He hears what the coach says and he kind of mimics him a lot and helps us and helps the players.  I think he's developed into a nice leader.  He has stepped into more of a role I think knowing all of a sudden he is one of the older DBs we have.  Like you said, the fact that he could have obviously considered not being here, but I think he realizes the best thing for him and his career, this nine weeks is probably the best thing for him too, to become a better player, get smarter, learn the system.  We have two new defensive back coaches, so he has an opportunity to really get to know those guys well.  It is a win-win for all of us when a player comes in.  I think it is makes the other players realize that it is important for Griff to be here and I think that is another form of leadership.

(on Lavelle Hawkins missing practice)

We just rested him.  His ankle was a little sore, so we kind of rested him today and next week he should be practicing.

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