There wasn't a whole lot of significant news that came out of Bill Parcells press conference today. A couple of highlights:
Chris Canty is on the injured list, he's got an ankle problem but is still probable for the Skins game.
Parcells was unhappy with the way the team practiced today. Said he needs to get that "squared away."
Big Bill also thinks that DeMarcus Ware is "struggling" and that Anthony Henry was "rusty" and hopes a full week of practice will help him.
Finally, he said he spoke to some of the veterans about their play last week and they need to get that fixed. (Speculations? - Take a guess at which veterans he's talking about in the comments. I think one is Roy Williams, his tackling technique of going for the legs has got to go. We want the old Roy back.)
Click below to get the full recap.
We need to play better against the run than what we've been playing. We played pretty well against Denver other than the last team, and there was a hold on that play. This team we're facing can run the ball on you. I think in KC the case, we were a little too pass conscious. The inexperience on our team hurt us in some areas in regard to know the formation and the reads and knowing when you should sit down for the run.
One thing on their defense that impresses me is that they all tackle well, including CB. That Marcus Washigton made about every tackle in the game the first time we played them. They know what they're doing. They mix pressure with coverage. I think they're a solid defense, I really do. They really blitzed a little bit early in the game when we first played them, but they didn't blitz much after that.
What was bad about practice today?
I don't know. I can't tell you everything in this setting. Its my problem. I'll see if I can't get it squared away. I'm not souding the alarm here, I just wasn't too pleased with what I saw.
Teams playing Santana Moss differently?
They see him as a big play guy, and they're doing something about it. Yeah. He's not just a deep guy. He's can also catch a little WR screen and take it a long way.
Marion better than Julius?
No, not really. We've been talking about these backs since training camp. Nothing has changed. I'm using Marion on 3rd down and a relief for Julius, and that's what I will continue to do.
Does realignment change the way you look at the playoffs?
I've never been for more playoff teams. It has changed a little bit. You can have a division winner that really isn't one of the best teams. It will be a coincidence probably, but it can happen. I don't have a better idea for how to do it, so I'm not asking them to change it. And I know the people in the front office who thought of the structure put a whole lot more thought into it than I have. I do think the smaller divisions keep more teams in it. Weren't there a couple of teams last year that got in at 8-8? You know, if there is someone that is better than that, they should be in. That's me. I think the best teams should play.
Brunnel now vs. Jax?
In Jax he was just a young guy. That was quite a few years ago. He's had a good career. He moves around pretty good for his age.
Their passing game more expanded?
I think they just use their personnel better. They try to put the ball in the hands of some guys. I think they have a good, solid feel for who they have now. I see a lot of similarities to the old days. Cooley reminds me of Didier.
A lot of Julius big runs last year came on draw plays in the nickel. Are teams taking away some of the things Julius did last year?
No, I don't really think so. I think teams are better playing their nickel. KC when you put the 3rd WR in there they just matched you. They have confidence in their structure that they can match that way. Not everyone would do that. The more the nickel defense gets in play in this league, the more confident people get in it. That includes playing the run. They'll make it look like it will be a coverage defense and then they'll bring safeties up to play the run.
Prepare differently to play in front of 91,000 people ?
No, not really. They got good fans up there, but we were up there on MNF last year. Its the same number of people. It is what it is. They've always had great fans up there.
Sometimes. Its an open stadium though, they aren't sitting right on top of you.
Check the forecast regularly and change your gameplans accordingly?
Yes I do. It looks like they'll get a little ice up there Thursday or Friday, but it should be okay over the weekend. It will be a late start, so it should get pretty cold and the wind dies down in the late afternoon over there. But I'm no weather man. The elements are a tremendous equalizer in football. But if you look at all categories statistically, there really aren't much difference in these teams. Out of all the categories I look at, its very very tight statistically. About the same in many, many categories. If the weather were like the Chicago/Steelers game last week, you certainly have to make plans to adjust to it. Especially the players from the South, they have to put on the right shoes and cleats and stuff like that to make sure they are comfortable with it.
Do you take less risks on two teams so close?
No, you play the game to give your team a chance, but you don't want to be discriminate. These guys can create minus plays, so you have to be careful.
Does this game feel like the old days. You and Gibbs in an NFC East race in December?
Two different teams. Different times. We're 20 years apart. I don't look at it that way. We were young coaches then. Different stadium. RFK was really unique in a lot of way. Like I said, Cooley reminds me of some guys. Moss reminds me a of a guy or two they had.
Which team has changed the most since the first matchup.
I don't think either one has dramatically changed.
Are you better now than you were then?
I would like to think that, but I'm not sure. Some games we look better and some games we don't. I know my team better. I know a lot of the players better, and a great number of them have advanced, but that's true in Washington as well.
Does run defense have to do with fatigue?
No, I don't think so. Last week you guys were all over the offense, so now I guess you've flipped it over. Next week you should be on something with pass. And then the week after that worry about the other side of the ball with the pass. The offense needs to play well, and the defense needs to play better.... And the special teams can contribute if they want to.
Ware seems like he's in a lot of plays but a step slow from making the play.
I don't know. He's struggling along.
Are all the rookies doing that?
No, Spears is playing better than he ever has. We had a quite a few mental errors last week, and he was involved in several of those. That's what I've been telling you about inexperience and recognition and not knowing the team.
I don't know what he will do this week. He didn't do much today. He's been doing better.
Down the road?
He should be a good player.
Did you move him to starter?
Not really a starter, but if I think someone is going to power rush us I would rather have the 6'7 290 guy in that position. If I think a guy is going to pass on us I'd rather have Greg.
Is the Canty injury why you brought in the new player?
No. I just had an open roster spot and wanted to utilize the opportunity to bring in a guy I wanted to look at.
At 270 lbs. , do you see him as a DE or LB?
Well, let me worry about that. He doesn't really fit in right now. He won't be involved this week, let's worry about this game.
What problems do you see with Barber other than being a rookie?
He had trouble hanging on to the ball early, but he's taken care of that. I don't see any problem with him, he's coming along.
How do you see your guys handling the pressure in the final month.
It wasn't asthetically pleasing, but I thought we tried real hard last week. Real hard. I just ask them to work hard and don't take any short cuts in preparation. I talked to them about that this week. Its easy to do when you know the team and you know the players. It's a big game, but you can get bored with the process. You think you already know this or that. You decide not to watch that extra tape or that extra film on your guy. You don't keep that sharpness, then losing is right around the corner. That's true in all walks of life, not just football. When you aren't on top of things, and you take a shortcut because you think you know the drill ...failure is right around the corner. Like some of you guys mailing in some of your columns. It doesn't just relate to athletics. You get bored with the process, and then you fail.
How comfortable are you with your backup QB?
Okay. Tony stays up on things. Romo is active for the games, and Henson is the 3rd guy.
Going into the final 3 games, what do you want from your veterans?
A couple of these veterans got to pick it up too based on last week. I've spoken with a few of them, not so nicely. Washington has a solid team, and I'm expecting a hard game.
Does it help that Bledsoe and Fergie and Glenn have been in playoff games ?
Well, just a few can't carry the whole group. A couple of the young players played well last week. We got to get ready. I got work to do.
What about Henry?
He was just not sharp. Hopefully with another week of practice he can sharpen up a little bit. He was obviously rusty. That position, you have to be on top of things pretty well to play there.