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Coach Munchak's Wednesday Practice Report



(on if the team is refocused after the tough loss)

I think we are focused. Whenever you lose the game on the last play it's something that takes longer than other games. As far as focus in the meeting rooms, that's not a problem. Out here it's the same way. They are paying attention to detail and their assignments. The good thing with these three games is we know all three of them very well and we have to brush up on some things and get the plans down, but obviously come Sunday we have to play our best game of the year.

(on the health of the team)

Health wise, I think this is the usual M.O. at the end of the season. It's been a long run, you are getting into that 15-16 weeks plus the preseason so it takes its toll. It was a good assignment day, good work day. We got the base stuff in so we will fight through it and will be ready to roll on Sunday.

(on Matt Hasselbeck's health)

We held him out today. We will see how he is tomorrow. He is doing more exercises in there so it's just a matter of waiting to see how he does. We are not worried about him knowing the offense or knowing what we are doing as much as the fact the he physically feels comfortable doing those things. He has been good at that and even in games when he has had any problems, the Atlanta game when his arm was a little sore. He knows if he doesn't feel right and he will be honest with us so we still feel good about him and hope that he will be ready to go Sunday.

(on Jake Locker's health after the big hit he took)

No, just some soreness. We were careful with him today again. He did a lot of the things in the run game but we kind of limited his throws in practice but nothing that would keep him from playing on Sunday.

(on Jake Locker not looking like a rookie)

Well I think it's his preparation during the week and that's what we saw in college how he was and how he prepared and how he was ready to go. The good thing is that you drafted a guy and we bragged on him when we drafted him on draft day and said all of the things that he could do. Then you watch him in preseason and you go 'yeah that's what we talked about.' Then you watch him when he plays and that's the kind of guy he is. He is a leader, the players react to him in a positive way, so we got what we thought we got. He has come in in two really tough situations against two good teams. It would be great to finish that one but we didn't. I think these guys have a lot of confidence in him.

(on the challenges of preparing for a winless team and not letting your guard down)

Well I think that, but also I think that we are in this thing if we take care of our three games and also because they are a division team so you look at it differently. To me the records don't mean a whole lot when you play against the division because you know each other well so there is a different type of rivalry there. Obviously, for them in their situation, they would like nothing better than to make it hard on us to make the playoffs. The record is not something that we have even talked about. We know who we are dealing with. When you turn the film on, especially on their defensive side, you see a team that is playing pretty hard.

(on avoiding a game-time decision  on a starting quarterback with Matt Hasselbeck's health)

I think our decision will be made before Sunday. I don't think the decision will have to wait until Sunday.

(on how Matt Hasselbeck's health is improving)

Until you practice some be out here and there has been a lot of Wednesdays where he hasn't practiced because of soreness and especially with an older quarterback you are going to have that sometimes. As far as how he is doing, there is no emergency until Friday until we see really where he is at as far as our concerns for if he can play or not play. Right now I'm assuming he is playing until we see otherwise.

(on Jake Locker's ability to extend plays)

It allows you to buy time, it hurts the defense, there are a lot of pluses to that as we know from having a running quarterback here over the years. We have had Kerry Collins and Neil O'Donnell who have done very well in the pocket so we have had both styles that have won for us. I think Jake (Locker) in the game definitely made some plays for us, made some plays with his legs, made a first down, scored the touchdown so that's some real good stuff that people can't say, 'that's what you need to win' because he may have run because he missed a coverage or he missed a throw or he missed something else that maybe Matt (Hasskelbeck) wouldn't have missed. You don't really want to get into comparisons of what this guy does versus that guy, the bottom line is that both of them have been successful for us so we are happy that we have two good ones.

(on if Matt Hasselbeck has become less elusive as he takes more hits)

Well I don't think so. I don't think he has changed a lot since the first day he walked through the door and probably how he was at Seattle. He is a guy that makes quick decisions, gets the ball out of his hands, which there is a lot of plus to that. Is he sore? I'm sure he is from the season but I don't think it's necessarily affected how he is playing.

(on if it makes it more difficult to create an offensive game plan since the two quarterbacks have different strengths)

I think luckily this is the kind of game where a lot wouldn't change as far as what we can or can't do. Maybe because Jake (Locker) can move more you are going to do more movement things with him if he is in the game, but you are not really going to change what have.

(on if Jamie Harper is ready for the expanded role)

He is, the fact that he suited up the last few weeks, he played more special teams than offense, but he has been getting a lot of reps in practice. He has a lot of confidence because of what he did in preseason when he got a lot of reps. He understands his assignments well, especially in the pass game, so we feel comfortable with him. He is a good, hard, heavy runner. He is a nice change of pace from a CJ (Chris Johnson) kind of running back. We are lucky to have a third running back that we feel that good about.

(on in he ever thought that the Colts would drop so far without Peyton Manning)

I don't think anybody did and I'm assuming that they didn't either. You never expect that not having a quarterback would result in this much drop off as far as not winning a game. I don't think there is any way that we thought that would happen. It's hard to believe that they are going through what they are going through with the talent they have in that team.

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