(Disclaimer: These press conference recaps are just paraphrases of what Wade Phillips says and aren’t vetted for total accuracy on quotes. I shorten and condense things he says but try to get across the intended meaning. If you have questions about something from the press conference, feel free to ask in the comments.)
Wade: Most of the guys we drafted are skill position players, corners, TE’s, RB’s, you can see what they can do, and we’re very pleased. We got a lot of football to play, get in pads, but we saw a lot of raw ability. Some free agents have an opportunity to make the team, some have the opportunity to play for us. A lot of one-on-one coaching..
He’s quick, changes speeds well, I like that in a WR, in camp everybody has noticed him, he’s doing well.
He is a smooth athlete, has acceleration, he’s worked a lot in passing game and he’s blossomed. He has a natural feel for routes and how to get away from people. The open field is his specialty. A natural feel for where the defensive guy is and where he needs to go.
Emmit Smith helping to coach?
Emmit was on the sideline, saying a few things, so Jerry told him to go out there and tell the guys - and he coached them. Good to have him out there, appreciative of him.
Excellent all around player, good in the passing game, leading rusher in ACC two years ago and almost was last year, a solid back, good receiver, tough, special teamer too.
Which defensive position has the easiest adjustment to the pro level?
Corners are usually easy fits, but it depends on the player. If they’re good enough we’ll get them out there. The innate skills of corner relate quickly. Jenkins played bump-and-run in college and did that well in practice but didn’t play off as much, Scandrick played off quite a bit but not bump-and-run, so he played off well.
Are those two guys to fill the positions Nate Jones and Jacques Reeves?
We lost three DBs from last year’s team, we hope they can come in and play as well. Jacques started 13 games, important to have those kinds of guys.
Do you have a plan on how you will deploy Felix?
The RB situation will wok itself out. We have talented players at the position, they can do different things.
Has the definition of workhorse changed, not a 25-30 carries a game nowadays?
It’s a 2-back league, even Minny with Adrian Peterson had two backs, you need two at least. Same with corners, you need four corners and we addressed that in the draft.
Happy with the overall addition of speed to the team?
Important that you have speed with talent, we think we added that. Overall team speed. Jenkins and Scandrick are certainly fast and help us because they can cover.
Roy Williams comments about not wanting the ball thrown to him sometimes?
I don’t know how that was interpreted by certain people but
You added on offense in the draft to an already potent offense?
You try to improve talent-wise every year, I think we’re going to do that. We tried to do the same defensively. Turns out a RB was there early, which we needed, and a TE was available that we thought could help us.
Small group of LB’s and DL’s out there in practice, anyone catch your eye?
We also have a small group on OL, one guy. He’s getting million-dollar coaching, Hud is taking care of him. We’ll sign a couple more OL.
Looks like a different guy, he lost 25 pounds and gained strength, still has the strong arm, experience now, he was in every meeting last year, that’s helped him. He’s thrown well. He’s a stronger guy, quicker, knows how Jason and Wade want it done. Anytime you can see Brad and Tony and emulate them it helps.
Talked to T.O. recently?
Terrell’s here, working out last week. We had normal conversations, he says he’s doing well and looking forward to the season, his attitude is very good like it has been since I’ve been here.
You were comparing a basketball TE before?
It’s just a feel for overall space, Tony Gonzalez was one, not comparing [Bennett] to them, but has a feel for space and where other guys are and has the body control like in rebounding. Puts his hip in there and catches the ball on the side. I like the way he moves, he got some separation from LB’s, he naturally does that well. John Garrett’s doing a great job with out TE’s.
New coaches on defense?
New coaches add a different touch, there is a difference, but the scheme is going to be the same. They have their own way of doing it, players will respond. Dave Campo has done a tremendous job, the DB’s in just three practices have improved their footwork, the way he communicates and teaches is great.
New guys get help from all the Pro-Bowlers and vets?
Big for players to emulate great players, Jason Witten and the other Pro-Bowlers we have are great workers. You learn to be a professional, it benefits the young guys when they see them work. They got winded out there a bit, but our vets go out on Tues and Thurs, threw 170 passes the other day, the veterans, they’re in shape, the young guys will benefit.
Bobby Carpenter’s change to the “Mo” backer?
I think it gives him a chance to run to the football, that's his strength. Gives him an opportunity for playing time. We got a rotation we’ll look at behind Bradie, maybe some of the young guys. Bobby’s got a wonderful attitude, works hard, hoping he comes through for us and himself, he has a lot of pride, he was kind of demoted last year and practiced just as hard, worked hard on special teams, he’s a great kid.
13 wins last season but a first round loss in playoffs…
Actually it was the second round. (ed. note - Oy, give it up Wade, this line of reasoning is so lame and ridiculous)
Is the approach any different this year?
No different, like last year try to improve the players, get them better. You take 15 offensive and 15 defensive categories, that’s 30 total, and we improved in 25 last year. If we do that again, keep improving, that’s what we want.
Felix Jones’ makeup?
Talking about what kind of kid he is, a worker, every day coming out to practice in preseason camp in college, smile on his face, works hard, stayed extra time. Those guys with talent and that makeup, mentally tough, work to get better, those guys get better.
Compare him to a previous back you’ve had?
When I saw him on tape, he runs like Thurman Thomas, feet close to the ground so he can cut quickly, has great vision. He sees the safety when he’s coming; I think he’s special in that area. He can make moves, accelerate and his vision is outstanding.
Division of labor among the backs?
I think we need to get a feel for that, on how to fit Felix in. The more we see the more the coaches are excited.
Any feel on Terry Glenn?
No feel, I really don’t. He comes in and works out. Lifts weights. I talk to him, he says he’s feeling all right.
Until he is reinstated, we don’t need to go there. Once that’s done we can talk about it.
He’s got ability, we like for him to be on field, he helps us on special teams. Every player that has ability we try to plug them in. We even dream up stuff like when we put Spencer, Ware and Ellis on field at the same time. I like Bobby’s attitude and ability. Hope to find a place for him.
Is Choice like Barber?
I don’t want to compare any rookies to Pro-Bowlers. Choice is a solid player, he’s shown everything on the field, can do it all, versatile, runs routes, catches the ball, moves in space, a good runner.
Are you OK with the WR position?
We want to get someone across form Terrell but there are not many like that, to get someone like that is hard. I believe in the guys we have. We were 4th in passing, 2nd in scoring on passing, 1st in yards per attempt, to say we need new WR’s is not the case. We had a lot of yards passing the ball and not just to Terrell. The other guy across from Terrell is