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Coach Munchak's Thursday Practice Report

Posted Dec 27, 2012

HEAD COACH MIKE MUNCHAK

(on if he knows if any players were named alternates for the Pro Bowl)

I’m not really sure about that. I guess they’re all alternates. That alternate thing I never understood because everyone is an alternate. If you’re a first alternate I get that, but after that, we’ll see what happens.

(on if he’s disappointed how the vote went)

Like I said yesterday, there are a lot of deserving players in this league that don’t get picked for the Pro Bowl. That happens every single year. There are only so many spots for a lot of good football players. Unfortunately for us, we didn’t have any guys last year. Obviously, we were 9-7, so I don’t know if the record matters. Like I said, we’ve had guys when they’re 11-5 and had nobody. It’s not surprising. I thought some guys had some solid years. But again, I know wins help that a lot. Hopefully, next year we’ll be more represented.

(on if he expects Chris Johnson to be playing on Sunday)

Yeah, we do. I think tomorrow he’ll come out and get some work and then Saturday, and then we expect him to be able to play on Sunday.

(on what that says about Chris Johnson’s durability)

It’s amazing. I think it’s amazing how he is since he’s been here. Unfortunately, the one time he did get hurt was during the playoff game when we needed him badly, as it ended up. For his size and the hits he’s taken over all the years of carrying the ball as much as he has, that’s a credit to him and the way he takes care of himself, that he can withstand that kind of punishment in the NFL that he takes, like any running back takes when they’re running the football, catching it, and on the field as much as he is. He’s not just a first-and second-down back, he plays quite a bit on third down. That’s a credit to him. Hopefully he’ll be able to finish up this season with a big game.

(on how hard it is for a running back to adjust when an offensive line keeps changing because of injuries)

I don’t think it should be. Maybe it’s easier said than done to put that out of your mind, that it’s still the same plays. We’re still running things that we feel he can run well. It’s the group, the tight ends, it’s having different guys, that takes away some of the chemistry of things maybe being as consistent as you want. He should still be able to have some good, solid football games. We’re hoping we’ll have that on Sunday.

(on if Byron Stingily will start at right tackle)

Yes, we’re going to start Byron (Stingily) going into the game. Like I said, all the craziness of that game, and the game not being a memorable one for any reasons, at least he had a nice, solid football game against some good football players. I think that helped him gain some experience. We thought we’d give him another chance this week to see how he can put two games back-to-back. That will mean a lot for him and for us going into the offseason.

(on if he’s impressed with Byron Stingily’s athleticism)

That’s why we drafted him. I think that’s what we saw in him, we got him in the sixth round. We knew he had a lot of development ahead of him. I think Bruce (Matthews) has done a nice job with him, just him getting a confidence level and getting out there and playing against some good players. I think practice has helped him a lot, going against (Derrick) Morgan and (Kamerion) Wimbley has helped him a lot, and then (Scott) Solomon, as hard as he goes in practice. It’s like a (Kyle) Vanden Bosch thing, where every day in practice, the tempo is so fast that it’s helped him get better even during the season. I think it’s a credit to how hard he’s worked, and how it’s just a matter of seeing how he can do back-to-back.

(on if the decision was made to give Byron Stingily an extended look)

Yes, (Mike) Otto is fine. Otto will be suited up, he’ll be the swing guy, and who knows, he might have to play some tight end.

(on picking Byron Stingily to start over Mike Otto)

Like I said already, it’s not really a knock on anyone. It’s the situation we’re in. Where we’re at as a team, it’s a good chance to see what you have at tackle. They’re going to have to compete again next year for that swing spot. We know what Mike (Otto) can do. Mike has played enough games for us that we know what he can do. Him playing one more game is not going to change our opinion of him one way or the other. This gives us a chance really to see where Byron (Stingily) is, because otherwise, the only competing they do is in preseason games, which is hard to evaluate sometimes or in training camp. This gives us a chance to see how the guy did in live work. (Jason) Babin will be out there, there will be some good players he’ll play against, so we’d like to see where he’s at.

(on if Kyle DeVan will be in the starting lineup)

(Kyle) DeVan will start at center, then we’ll move Fernando (Velasco) back. The way we finished the game in Green Bay is how we’re going to start this game.

(on what he liked better about the lineup that finished at Green Bay)

Again, this time of year, there are a lot of factors you think about. For this game we thought, we ended it that way. There is no real rhyme or reason to it other than the fact at center and guard, that it’d probably give us the best chance to play consistent from start to finish.

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