Coach Whisenhunt's Wednesday Practice Report



(on Zach Mettenberger's shoulder)

He's getting better. He did some things in practice today, which is encouraging. We'll see how he continues to progress during the week.

(on Zach Mettenberger's recovery)

We're optimistic that he'll be able to play. Nothing's changed since we said that Monday. It's good to see him be able to do some things on the practice field.

(on if Zach Mettenberger is dealing with pain)

I'm sure there's a little bit. We haven't specifically talked about it. I'm sure there's some in there, yes.

(on if Zach Mettenberger is still the quarterback)

It's Wednesday. I don't think we have to declare anything today, but that's fair.

(on how problematic another hit to Zach Mettenberger's shoulder would be)

I don't think so. I don't think that really is necessarily problematic as far as affecting his play or if it would be more susceptible to that.

(on if there is a risk to worsen Zach Mettenberger's injury by being hit)

It's typical of a shoulder sprain. If he falls on it again, yes, it will hurt, but I don't necessarily know that it's going to be an issue in the game or where it will be later in the week.

(on improvements he would like to see from Zach Mettenberger)

I'd like to see him continue to grow like he's done. It seems like there's things every week that he's getting better with, which is what you want to see. All this time that he's getting is invaluable as far as understanding the position and us getting a chance to see what he can do. You can't create a scenario where you can actually work on something that you'd like to see. You hope that some of those things come up, but we're getting a lot of good information about him.

(on replacing Justin Hunter)

We've got a plan for it. That's why you have multiple receivers. We'll have something set for Sunday when we get to it.

(on Kris Durham's progress)

I don't have any question he'll be ready to contribute. He knows the offense. He's done a good job with that. He's gotten a lot of reps in practice, he just hasn't played in the games. The one thing I don't worry about is that he is a veteran. He's got a lot of experience, so I would expect that it won't be too big for him. It shouldn't be too big of an adjustment.

(on how much speed the team loses without Justin Hunter)

Probably a little bit, but (Derek) Hagan has been able to do some things getting down the field. I don't know with Kris (Durham), I haven't seen him in a game yet. We still have some guys that can move. Nate (Washington's) caught some deep ones and so has Kendall (Wright). You just move guys around and put them in different spots, and hopefully that will help compensate for that.

(on the status of the offensive line)

Not great.

(on if Taylor Lewan or Michael Oher were able to practice)

Neither (Taylor) Lewan or (Michael) Oher practiced today. I don't know. I really don't know about their chances. We'll have to see as it progresses. We signed another tackle. Obviously, it's something we needed to do because of where we are with the line, and hopefully those guys will continue to get better.

(on if Chance Warmack will be able to play)

Yeah, Chance (Warmack) did a little bit today, so we're hopeful that'll progress during the week, and he'll be OK.

(on if he is going to be cautious with Zach Mettenberger's playing time due to his injury)

If Zach (Mettenberger's) healthy, he'll play. If he's not healthy, then he won't play. That's what we have trainers and doctors for when we talk about it. If he didn't have to throw the ball, he would have been able to come back in and finish the game as a positional player. Because of the situation with the quarterback having to throw, it was something he couldn't do. We'll make that determination as the week progresses.

(on if he believes in carrying over momentum into the next season)

Obviously, it would be good for everybody, for us to show some positive signs. Winning a game would help. You're always working and building, trying to get better. As far as one year carrying over into another, I don't know if there's any proof that's necessarily the case, but it always makes you feel better about the offseason when you finish on a high note.

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