We’re glad that he’s back, and we’re working him back into the practice. It’s good. We’ll work him in, see how he feels. Just the fact that’s he’s back out there is big for us.
(On some veterans not practicing
I don’t know if it was as much of an anticipation of tomorrow’s practice. It was just that time of camp. It was part of the plan, and we did that. That’s all part of this whole process.
(On traveling to Atlanta)
This is good. It’s not easy getting on a bus and riding down there and practicing for a couple of hours, but just a change-up. You get into this situation in camp where you don’t know what day it is. You don’t know what’s going on. You kind of get into that routine. I don’t want to say boredom, because you’re doing a whole lot of work, but this is fun. It’s fun to go down there. I’m excited just to see how we respond to that. This is really our first road trip. I know we don’t go to New Orleans for almost two weeks now, but we get a road trip in advance, so that’s good. It’s maybe just something out of the routine is always a good change-up.
(On practicing in Atlanta)
I think that one of the things we talked about early in camp, it’s going to be tough. Well, it’s going to be tough later in the season. Hopefully we’ll be in a big game that we’ve got to go on the road and win. These are the kind of things that lay the foundation for that.
(On communicating with Falcons coach Mike Smith)
Mike and I have talked. We’ve talked about what the whole process of this is. Mike and I are good friends, so I’m excited to go down there and go against him.
(On expectations for Monday’s practice)
You get a chance to see some of your players matched up against some of their players from the standpoint of evaluations. When you’re seeing the same guys day in and day out, sometimes you get jaded. When you go against another team, I think it gives you a fresh perspective on where you are. I think one of the things that’s really important for us is how are we going to handle this? Obviously, going to somebody else’s place, having to travel, it’s not easy, especially in camp. It’s hard enough in the season. I know this isn’t a game. From a standpoint of just being able to make adjustments to formations that you haven’t gotten familiar with. We’ve been here for over a week and a half. You can kind of get used to patterns that you’re seeing from formations or how a defense is bringing pressure, and this will be different. This won’t be something that you’re used to. A lot of times you can look out there and see maybe a split by a receiver or how a linebacker’s lined up and kind of have an idea of the coverage or what the route is. This is completely different. We haven’t studied them. We don’t know what’s coming, so it’s kind of like the first day. It really comes down to playing your scheme, playing your technique and seeing if you can execute or win. We’re doing that.
(On competition for receivers)
Anytime you have competition against somebody else, you get a chance to see or get a read on that. It’s a great evaluation tool, no doubt about that.
(On past scrimmages)
I don’t know about comparing notes. There’s always respect for other guys in the league. I know from having played it, when I was in Washington we used to always go over and scrimmage against Pittsburgh. We’d go to them once, they’d come to us once, much like this. Coach (Mike) Mularkey was there as a tight end. I know we talked often during those scrimmages. In fact, I think that’s really where the roots of our friendship actually began.
(On observing younger safeties)
I think you’re doing that no matter what. You’re always looking at young guys. That’s part of this process.
(On filling spots for safety and cornerback)
If you’re going to make the team, and if you throw in special teams, those are three areas that are valuable as far as evaluating. The more that they can do, the better chance they have of being on the squad.
(On the Falcons’ players)
This may sound dumb, but I don’t really know a lot about their team. I haven’t played them in a couple of years. I know they’ve had some changes. You don’t really have a chance. If this was a game week and you had a chance to study them and look at them on tape. I know Matt Ryan, I know the receivers, I know those types of positions, but aside from that, I don’t really know.