Head Coach Doug Marrone
Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Q: Injuries?
A: Scott Berchtold: Did not participate in practice: Marquise Goodwin with a hamstring, Ty Powell with the ankle, C.J. Spiller with the shoulder and Fred Jackson with the groin. Limited in practice: Marcus Easley with the knee and Aaron Williams with the neck. Full participation: Mario Williams with the thumb, Sammy Watkins with the groin and Brandon Spikes with ribs.

Q: Did that thumb injury limit Mario’s snaps in the last game?
A: I think it might’ve been just to get re-taped.

Q: Are you concerned about Sammy’s groin?
A: No, not that I saw in practice.

Q: Is Kraig Urbik going to start at left guard?
A: He may. He may. We’re trying to get better, so we’re looking at a couple of options.

Q: What does he bring to the table at that position?
A: Well, experience is the first thing. Then, we’ve just got to see how he plays and practices.

Q: How important is pass protection this week? Have you addressed the challenged of that?
A: Oh yeah. It’s a great challenge from a standpoint of just the front four, from a standpoint of pressure, from the standpoint of pressure looks and things like that. Assignments are key. That’s the first part of it, and then the next thing is that you actually have to actually block them, which is the biggest challenge. We’ve got to do a good job and we can’t have anyone running free and getting free hits on him.

Q: How much have we seen from Sammy Watkins right now, as far as his potential goes?
A: Oh, I don’t know. As we keep playing, I think we’ll be able to answer that question. Obviously, from our standpoint as coaches, we’re going to keep pushing.

Q: Does Sammy have to play a bigger role now that Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller are injured?
A: I know there’s been a lot of talk about it, but I feel comfortable with the guys we have back there. I think Bryce Brown’s a threat receiving, catching the football, doing all of those things and a home run threat from that standpoint. We’ve seen Anthony (Dixon) a little bit in his style of running, running downhill. I don’t really think that I’m as concerned about that situation. They’re two good players and guys that have played, so they’ll get in there and play.

Q: Can you characterize the big impact that Sammy has had on the team’s success?
A: Oh, yeah. That’s what the expectation is. He’s done everything he possibly can to be a good football player. He’s still a young player. He’s still growing. That’s how I see it. When you talk about potential and where he’s going, I really don’t know. He’s a good football player. It’ll get tougher for him each and every week. It’ll be our responsibility to put him in the positions where he can be part of it. A lot of his success will be dependent on the people around him and how well they play, whether it be Robert Woods or Chris Hogan or Mike Williams or Scott Chandler, Chris Gragg, the backs catching the ball. When you have that then it gets a little bit tougher to defend, but when you just have one guy I think pretty much every team in this league can take one person out of it.

Q: Are you concerned about the pass protection element with Boobie Dixon and Bryce Brown?
A: Fred was outstanding from a protection standpoint. I think that from watching the practice and things like that, I think Anthony and Bryce have done a good job, but I’m sure that they’ll be tested this week.

Q: What disappointed you with the way Kraig Urbik played last year?
A: Obviously, we brought Chris Williams in. Chris played two games and maybe a couple of series in the last one. We won both of the them and we liked what we saw in him. I think the other guys just were playing better. I don’t think it was a matter of disappointment. He made the team and he’s got to be ready to step up and go. If he gets the call on Sunday, I’m sure he’ll be ready to go.

Q: I guess you’ve liked Chris Hogan for a while now? Is that accurate to say?
A: Chris was a guy – and I’ve never mentioned this to Chris – that you looked at and were looking for reasons why maybe he shouldn’t be on the team, but he was a guy that went out there every day. Someone mentioned it before, about pulling for those type of guys, undrafted or whatever it may be. He’s a guy that all of the sudden stepped it up, took a bigger role on special teams, addressed that, had gotten better at receiver and really has done all of those things. Again, he’s a guy that didn’t have a lot of experience playing, so he’s another one that I like the direction he’s headed. He’s another one to say, ‘Hey, have we seen the best of Chris Hogan?’ I can’t answer that question because he keeps getting better and stepping up every time. Every time you try to count him out a little bit if he doesn’t have the greatest day, the next day he’ll come back and you say to yourself, ‘Holy cow.’ I think he’s a resilient type of guy with attention to detail. You can trust what he’s doing out there on the field. He knows exactly what to do. He knows all three positions. He keeps putting himself in a position. I always tell the players that you’ve got to put yourself in a position where the coaches have to play you because that’s how well you’re playing. I think Chris has done that.

Q: How many sacks would be categorized as good sacks to take?
A: I’d probably have to go back to look, but that’s something that we do discuss to make sure that we don’t need him to make every single play. I think, when those things occur, sometimes the turnovers are forced. I think that we have to do a better job with him in the pocket with those decisions in making sure that we protect the football. Those things are all addressed. Again, you’re addressing someone who knows that, so you expect to see that when we start playing.

Q: What might some of those other options along the offensive line be?
A: Everybody that’s healthy and the best combination.

Q: Even Cyrus Kouandjio could get a look?
A: Absolutely.

Q: Can you expand on the Jets defensive front?
A: Outstanding, powerful, tough matchups, great against the run, very good against the pass. They’re an outstanding bunch. They really are. Everyone where they’ve been, they’ve been ranked and every one of those players can flat out play, even the backups. Even the guys that we don’t talk about you have to make sure that you’re at your best. It’s going to take our best to play well. They’re physical. It’s going to be a big challenge.

Q: Do you have to overcompensate for the offensive line? Are you reducing some of your passing options because you have to use maximum protections?
A: I think that we have to what we have to do to win, but I think that’s first and foremost to what we have to do.

Q: Is Kyle throwing for 280+ yards in his first three games a negative reflection on EJ’s performance?
A: I’d have to go back and look at that before I feel comfortable answering that question. I really would. I don’t even know. That question has never come up to my mind until you just brought up. I don’t know. After the season’s over and I have a chance to do it then I’ll look at it and be able to answer that question for you.

Q: Is Kyle taking advantage of more opportunities?
A: More opportunities were created because we were down. It’s the same thing. If the opportunities had presented themselves and he took advantage of it, but I wouldn’t compare one person’s game to another person’s game based on that.

Q: Is there anything you have to guard against with Bryce finally getting the chance to play?
A: No, he’s played before. If it’s a younger guy, maybe you’d say that, but he’s a confident guy. He knows what he has to do. He knows he has to play within the system.. He’s been around a little bit. I think that if it was a younger guy, a rookie or something, yes you’d have to sit down and say, ‘Hey, listen. We need you to do what’s in the scheme and everything,’ but Bryce is a confident player and he’s excited about the opportunity.

Q: What’s been the attitude of how the players have approached this week based on the shortcomings of last week?
A: We know that if we don’t fix those things then it’s going to be difficult for us to win. I think that’s the best way to explain it. The players understand that. When I come out here and I said, ‘Hey, these are the things we need to fix,’ it’s not like I tell you [the media] and not have told them. We talked about it and we’re working on those things: missed tackles, ball security, penalties, awareness and being physical. We’re working on it.

Q: Was Mike Williams late to the game on Sunday?
A: No. Not to my knowledge. I would know, I think. They usually report it.

Q: He was spotted by some fans outside of the stadium around noon. There are actually photos of it.
A: Are there really? All the uniforms are in the locker. Was it a Halloween party? I don’t know. To my knowledge, absolutely not.

Q: How do you approach defending a guy who has just joined a team like Percy Harvin?
A: He’s a heck of a player. He’s explosive. He can run, he can return kicks, he run reverses, sweeps and run vertically down the field, catch the football, line up in the backfield. He can do a lot. You have to be aware of where he is and what’s going on. Again, there’s not a lot of film of him in this system, but I’m sure they didn’t get him to keep him on the bench. I’m sure a couple of extra days, or whatever it may be, will help him. We’ve got to be ready to defend it.

Q: Do you think there is a big difference going into the break being 5-3 opposed to 4-4?
A: I think anytime you lose you probably lose a little bit of momentum. I think, for us, the focus has been on the quarters and I think it’s extremely important. Throw all those coaching clichés about the next games and it actually is. We know that. It’s a divisional opponent, which is extremely important. I just look at it as we have to go out there and win the game and win the quarter and not really beyond it and see what happens afterwards.

Q: From your experience, how difficult is it to work a player up to speed in the middle of the season?
A: I think a lot depends on, one, the player and, two, what his background is. I think a lot of systems around the league are somewhat mirrored in what they do. You can bring some people in and they can take and pick it up quite easily. I think the more of a veteran you are, the easier it is. If you’re not and you don’t have experience in a lot of different systems, then I think it’s more difficult to get into it.

Q: How will the snaps be divvied out between Boobie and Bryce?
A: I don’t really know that yet. It’s not like we sit down and we say that. We’re going to look at practice and set the plan and see where it goes. A lot of times that’s dictated by the things that go on in the game, depending on what your plan is. I really can’t say how we want to do it right now. Hopefully whatever way we do it is productive.

QB Kyle Orton
Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Q: Obviously you’re down pretty good running backs this week and you have two guys can go in there but does this mean especially against this team with this front, you may have to rely on the passing game a bit to get things done?
A: Well, we always want to stay balanced. Dixon’s been running really hard and Bryce had a good day at practice today so we’re fortunate probably not like a lot of teams to really have a lot of depth at running back and we’ll be ready to run hard and play well.

Q: How concerned are you that you’ve been sacked 13 times in your three weeks?
A: We’ve played some good defenses. We’ve played some great fronts. That’s how it goes sometimes and defensive lines around this league are really, really good. Our guys up front are scratching and clawing to protect me and it’s football and sometimes quarterbacks get hit. I have to do a good job of just standing in there, trusting those guys and giving the receivers time to work..

Q: Sometimes do you make the value judgment that sometimes getting a sack might be better than forcing those throws?
A: No doubt. If you’re getting hit, you can let that affect your decision making and certainly you can’t let that affect the premium of the ball and I’ve turned the ball over in all three games so far so that’s something I’m working hard to correct and as an offense we’re trying to value the football and do a better job of hanging on to it.

Q: In your short time here, what has struck you or impressed you about Sammy Watkins?
A: Well he’s just really good. He’s a great route runner. His speed is incredible. Very strong hands. I don’t think he’s made a body catch yet which is great and he just keeps getting better every week.

Q: I don’t want to call it instant chemistry but you guys have developed a pretty quick bond on the field capped by what happened last weekend.
A: You get a guy that gets open like he does, call it chemistry, call it whatever, you’re throwing to an open receiver and he does a great job of getting open and making my job easy.

Q: Along the same lines, you’ve seem to connect pretty well with Chris Hogan over the last couple of weeks. Can you talk about how that chemistry has developed between you two?
A: Yeah, he runs hard. He runs hard routes. He’s aggressive to the ball. He makes contested catches and is a smart player so he’s stepped in nice and has really seized his opportunity to get more playing time on the field.

Q: Coach Marrone hinted that Kraig Urbik might get a start this week. He’s working with the first team a little bit. Against a front like this that’s as good as they are. What are your thoughts on that?
A: We’ve got Coach Marrone and Coach Pat Morris–they’re great offensive line coaches so whoever the five is out there protecting me, they’ll do a great job and they’ll be ready to play.

Q: Just the urgency with getting the fixes fixed. Coach was pretty adamant with us saying that if we don’t fix some of the things that are ailing us, it’s going to be pretty hard to win in any given week let alone this week. Just maybe the urgency, you feel that there is in this room this week…
A: No doubt. We had a great practice today. It was great to see guys show up and concentrate on the things that we’ve been talking about and putting and emphasis on getting better and having the urgency without panic. We’re in a great spot; we’re 4-3. We’re going to play a divisional road game with a bye week coming up so all effort, all focus on this week to go out and do whatever it takes to get a win and I think the way we practiced today, we’re off to a good start.

Q: You mentioned you’ve gone against some great defensive lines. You have another one coming up this Sunday. What challenges do the Jets possess that you have to take on this weekend?
A: First and foremost, they’re physically dominant. They’re big guys, athletic guys, powerful guys so they can beat you just in one-on-one matchups up front and then obviously with their scheme they can create confusion and you amplify that with the type of athletes they have up front, makes it a tough day.

LB Preston Brown
Wednesday, October 16th, 2014

Q: Percy Harvin, you’ve never seen him in the Jets offense. How challenging will that be knowing what he can do, but not knowing specifically how they will use him?
A: Right now we’re just looking how they did running the wildcat and different formations and seeing how they can put him in in those situations. But you never know what they can do so you have to prepare for everything and jailbreaks and bubble screens, anything they can do to get the ball in his hands in space.

Q: It seems like you’ve kind of jumped ahead of Keith on the depth chart or at least that’s what it looked like from last week. The overall chance to be a starting player, not just based off of injury, how does that feel?
A: I just take it week by week, day by day. So right now they have me in the starting lineup, so that’s what I’m doing right now. Just go out there and try to get better each day.

Q: Have you been able to get more comfortable though?
A: Oh yeah. Getting those reps early on really helped and then in the coming weeks just making sure I was ready to go, keeping my mind right and being able to prepare as a starter so it’s been good.

Q: Coach talked about fixing things and getting back to what you’ve been doing, clearly one of those things is your performance against the run. You guys have been so consistently good and then Minnesota kind of gouged you this week.
A: Yeah and the biggest thing with us was that it really wasn’t scheme or anything like that it was just missed tackles, that’s really what led to the big plays. So if we just hone down that and make sure we make the tackles then we’re in a spot that we’ll be fine.

WR Chris Hogan
Wednesday, October 16th, 2014

Q: How does that make you feel when you hear something like that from your head coach?
A: Pretty good, that’s obviously something that I’ve really been working hard at the past couple years that I’ve been here. I try to be that guy that was willing to do anything and everything to help this team win.

Q: How good does it feel to kind of see it pay off, especially last week in a victory?
A: It feels great. There’s nothing like that. Getting out on the field and being a part of a game winning drive and playing a big part and being able to make a big play on that drive. It’s a great feeling.

Q: Last year you obviously went home to play the Jets, but this year with your expanded role in the offense how does it feel to get a chance to play in front of your friends and family?
A: I’m really excited. I’m really looking forward to this game. It’s always fun going back home and having family and friends being able to be there and support you. So, just really looking forward to going back and getting a win before we head into this bye week.

Q: A chance to be 5-3 as opposed to 4-4 going into the bye, is that as big of a difference as it just sounds when you say it?
A: Absolutely, I think it’s huge getting a win before going into the bye especially against the Jets. It’s a divisional opponent. This would be a huge win for us.

OL Kraig Urbik
Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Q: You might play this week. Are you excited about that? Ready for that? What’s the anticipation?
A: Yeah, definitely ready. Every week, I’m preparing like I’m the starter. Being a backup that dresses every game day, you could be one play away from starting so I prepare every week like I’m going to be starting and I’m going to be ready.

Q: You started three years in a row for this team. How frustrating was this offseason to see what the moves they made and now be in the situation you’ve been in for seven weeks?
A: I’m not really going to get into that. I’m very fortunate to be in there right now. I’m just looking forward to the next game.

Q: How about the challenge in facing the Jets. For you first outing here this season, you’ll go up against a team that’s as good at any at sacking and getting pressure?
A: Yeah, it’s one of the best D-Lines in the league right now and they generate a lot of pressure and it’s the Jets, they do a bunch of blitzes every down. We’re going to have to be on our game and do extra film work this week.

WR Sammy Watkins
Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

Q: You had little bit of a groin injury today at practice. Did that happen during a practice and what’s your status?
A: I’m doing fine. I’m participating. I had a great, great day today with just running around and just learning the game plan and doing pretty good.

Q: Did you miss any reps at all?
A: No, sir.

Q: You said all along that you came here to be a playmaker…you have to be a playmaker. Now that you’ve got two guys; Fred and CJ are hurt. Two guys that aren’t in there. Do you feel more of a burden to be the guy?
A: Not really. I’m just going out there, playing fast and just trying to be presentable when Kyle comes to me. I know those guys are going to be down. We’re missing a lot of what they do with running the ball and getting them matched up on linebackers but I think for the most part, we’re going to have a great game plan. Boobie Dixon we’ll do a good job and the other running back, Bryce Brown. I think they will pick up the slack.

Q: You certainly saw this at Clemson. You were the dynamic guy there. Teams rolled the coverage to you. They had to game plan for you. Again, with two weapons like that, do you think the Jets are going to gear the game plan towards taking you out of it?
A: They might. We never know. We’ll figure it out during the week and see what they do. It’ll be great if they double cover me…that would mean (Robert) Woods would be wide open, Mike (Williams), (Chris) Hogan…those guys would make plays. As long as we win, I’m fine with them double covering me. It doesn’t matter.

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