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Parcells press conference 8/15/06

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Lots pf praise for Ferguson, loves his body type, muscle mass, he's hard to dent, want to keep him going.

Likes Pepper Johnson. When he knows the down and distance and the probability of the play he's a good player. But when he just has to figure out what's going to happen, he's just average. He has to be good all the time. Stanley is young, good body type, size, strength, stamina, but it's a big transition for him from college, going from one-gap to two-gap.

Hatcher needs to do better against the run, but he can compete right away against the pass, but has a long way to go in the run. [Ed. Note: This is what I wrote last Saturday about Hatcher: To simplify his performance, when he's asked to rush the passer he can look really good, when he's asked to play the run he can look really bad. That's not a hard and fast rule, but it's a good generalization.]

Ferguson won't play in the nickel, get maybe 550 plays out of him for the season (around 35/game).

Ratliff better body type of the DE's if one was to move over to NT. Have to be careful with him, he's been moved a lot in college and I get him and he's been on the treadmill. He has a tremendous motor, aggressive, enthusiastic player. Not as good in the last game as in practice. [Ed. Note: Two for two, here's my eval of Ratliff yesterday: Considering he was going against the backups, I would've expected more out of Ratliff, given his work in training camp, but he had a solid game.]

You can't get into this game from just watching. Flozell is feeling the effects of not finishing up last season. I'm pushing them hard in camp, quite a lot of contact in camp to try to get them battle hardened. After this week, practice will change, got to pay more attention to the guys who are going to play instead of getting everybody reps.

Colombo hasn't played in a long time, so he needs game time. He has better leg strength, better understanding of system, is in much better physical shape. He's a weight room guy, like Procter. Will play a half this week. He was passable in that game (Seattle), had to play their first team defense.

Don't get me going on these kickers.

Owens running: he was running yesterday as well. I really don't have much to say. This subject is getting redundant.

It's not Gurode's job at center yet, but Gurode has played better than Al. Al has a better chance against 4-man lines.

Zimmer big difference this year. Much more comfortable. Conceptually he understands the defense better. Having to keep his mind from racing, sees the possibilities. They put a game plan against Seattle, handed it back to them and told them to cut it in half. Didn't want to test their mental capabilities. You don't want tentative players thinking about what they need to do. Spent most of my time telling him what we need at each position, don't compromise. He gets it now.

Bledsoe is durable as a player, only one injury that was serious. Reasonably productive, hasn't always had the best cast. Done a pretty good job with his career, physically he's fortunate. God was good to him physically.

Defense getting a little attitude, they're bigger, faster, more confident in each other.

Fabini and Colombo will play Monday at RT. Petitti moved over to the left this week. Not sure of the rotation there. He's still in contention for RT. Just trying to get him reps on both sides.

Thinks teams will try to spread us out some to test Ellis. They get vulnerable, too, when they spread out, so we'll get some sacks.

Don't even count Glymph's last sack as a sack, we just call that a freebie.

InmanRoshi over at the Zone posted a full recap, click below to read it.

Source: The CowboysZone

Nothing new roster wise. Some of our injured guys are coming along good, and I expect them back real quickly. We?re trying to make a big push here this week, so I worked them hard this morning in practice. We don?t have much time between the next two games, so we got to get them ready.

Terry?s injury? Its the same thing. Fowler and Carpenter are making a lot of progress.

What did you talk to Terry about yesterday? How the weather is doing in California. How he?s doing. What kind of car he?s driving

What kind of car is he driving? I can?t say.

Why did you have Flo down with the 3rd string? I didn?t move him down. His knee is a little sore so I?m trying to get him less reps.

Spears? He?s doing well, but he needs a lot of work.

Fergie? My approach with him is like an old car. I want him up and running, and I don?t want him parked. That?s like a 48 Packard. Once they?re parked the fenders and wheels come off, and they?re stripped down to nothing.

Why has he been so durable? He?s very thick. Massive muscle in his lower body. Very powerfull guy. Very hard to put a dent in that armor.

Do you think he?s as funny as his teammates find him? He is a fun loving guy, and I enjoy his personality. He know when to be serious and when to have fun. I?m proud of him. He?s done well in his career and handled his business well. I think he?ll do well after his career is done as well. I saw him come in as a 7th round draft pick with a lot of skepticism around him. He didn?t get much money coming in, but he?s done well with his career.

What do you need from him now that Glover is gone? I?m going to need more from him until I can get one of these other nosetackles in place. I?m still not sure what I?ll do there. I got some young guys working there, but I could even move one of the DE?s over there if necessary. Jason can do this about as long as he wants to, but when the tediousness of training and stuff takes over that?s when his time will run out. But as long as he tenacious enough to keep his weight up he can do this job.

Why have you had such success with 7th round draft picks? I have no idea. I don?t want to sound like a horseguy here, but some numbers just work better than other.

Which end do you think will move inside? I don?t know. We just got 5 or 6 ends here that are good players, so whoever the next guy is that?s who I?ll move over. I?m not saying I will. I like Pepper. I kept him last year for a reason. When he knows the down and distance and the probability of the play he?s a good player. But when he just has to figure out what?s going to happen, he?s just average. He has to be good all the time. Stanley is a young guy who is used to playing a gap defense, and now we?re trying ot make him a two gap player. He?s got a good body and he?s got some toughness, but its not an easy transition.

What happens if Spears gets back to where he was? We?ll be in a good situation at end. Hatcher has some work to do against the run. He can contribute right away in the pass, but against the run he?s got some work to do. But I see a little more toughness from this team on defense. We got a little attitude here that I haven?t seen before.

How many plays can you get out of Fergie? That?s a good question. I probably don?t want him in nickel. That?s 450-500 snaps in the season.

Does any particular end have a better body type to play nose? Yeah, Ratliff. But he?s a player that has been moved around a lot in football ? he?s played about 6 different positions since college. He started out as a tight end. Then moved to defensive end. Then moved to defense tackle ? then I get him. Its set his progress back. But he?s got just a tremendous motor. A very enthusiastic player. He would have played a big role for us as a nickel rusher last year had he not gotten hurt.

Did he play as well in the game as he practiced? No, he hasn?t been out there since Week 5 last year. I can?t stress this enough guys ?. You just can?t get in tune in this game by watching. I can?t stress this enough. Especially the linemen. I?ve never seen a player do it. Even Flozell ? I still see the effects of that. You got to stay with it. Ideally after a good training camp after you work hard you get a little battle hardened. That?s when you?re ready to play the season. But I got to change my whole practice venue here ? right now I?ve been in evaluation mode and getting guys snaps. Next week I got to get the guys ready to play.

Is Colombo in the same position with not playing? Yes, very much so. Very much. So now we got to get him playing.

Do you think he can be a player? I hope so. He?s got better leg strength, which was important to him. He needed to get his strength up, but that wasn?t his fault. He couldn?t lift weights for a couple of years.. He?s one of these weight room guys who will stay in there all day. Him and Proctor. He?ll play a half at least on Monday Night. All the tackles are still in contention to start. He did passable enough in the game. He played against their 1st string, so I was able to get a better evaluation of him than the other guy.

Vanderjagt hasn?t? kicked the last couple of days. Concerned? Don?t get me started on these kickers.

Terrell was running. Is that siginificant? I don?t have much to say. The subject is getting redundant.

Will Al get any time with the 1?s or is this Andre?s job? I won?t say its anyone?s job, but Andre has played better to this point. But Al plays better against a 4 man front, and every team we play this year uses one.

Zimmer getting more familiar with the 3-4? Big difference this year. Much more comfortable in the defense. Conceptually he understands it so much better than last year. Now I have to keep his mind from racing, because he?s seeing possibilities. They put a game plan together the other day for Seattle, I took one look at it and handed it right back to him and told him to cut it in half. I want to evaluate these guys based on their talent, not on how much knowledge they?ve retained. I don?t want tentative players in the preseason because they?re constantly having to think about stuff.

Have you ever had a coach learn a system in the middle of the season? Of course. I was one. Mike has a good background, his father was a coach. I think with him, once he started to understand the philosophy of personnel the other stuff came quickly. Here is what we?re looking for at this position, don?t compromise. Here is what we?re looking for from that position, don?t compromise. He?s got all that stuff now. I think initially its human nature that you?ve been in a scheme that you know and like you?re hesitant, but good coaches can coach anything. But if you don?t have a philosophy of personnel in the NFL you have no chance to win. And there are a lot of guys in this league who don?t. You have to know what you?re looking for. And even if you know what you?re looking for, sometimes its hard to find it. We?ve been lucky to accumulate some players the past couple of years.

(Daily Bledsoe question about how he?s progressed since he first had him). He?s been very durable as a player. Only suffered one serious injury. By and large he?s been productive. He hasn?t always had the best cast. I think he?s done a good job with his career. Just to survive, there haven?t been a lot of guys live as long as he has physically. I?ve told him, God has been good to him.

The pressure of being the overall #1 pick? It?s a cottage industry with this draft, but my own personal attitude is that I don?t look at it like that. I hope to bring in player who I think will help me win and be a part of this franchise for a while. I don?t worry about who is #1, #2, #3 ? I can name a lot of players in the top 10 that weren?t good investments. I don?t care what anyone says, no one hits on those picks all the time. If you hit half, you?re lucky.

How is your defense tougher? I just see more confidence and attitude. We?re bigger and faster. They have confidence in one another.

Which RT will you not use MNF? I?ll tell you who I will use. I?ll use Fabini and Colombo. I?ve moved Pettiti to the left. I wont make up my mind what I?ll do there until Jacksonville.

Is Pettiti?s move to the left side temporary? I haven?t decided yet. If you only keep 3 tackles, the 3rd guy has to play both sides. So I?m trying to get him some experience there.

How much does your philosophy of personnel dicate or change given the circumstances. Sometimes the colleges don?t produce what you are looking for? I got some information about you Babe. I heard that they called you Mr. August when you were here because you had a penchant for leading your team back to preseason victories. I had a guy like that

Did he play long in the league? Yeah. He played for 14years. They may be there, but in different spots. Most 3-4 OLB?s in the NFL played defensive end in college. You look at the Steelers and they took Vrabel and Alonzo Jackson out of FSU and those guys didn?t work. But they knew what they were looking for and they also took Haggans and Porter and it did work. They know what they are looking for, it just doesn?t work all the time ?. Just like the rest of us.

You say you don?t like substituting packages a lot and you like to your base defense straight up ?. But does it make you tentative with Ellis at a OLB. Are you worried they will try to attack him in coverage? I think teams will try to spread us out and take advantage of that. I talked to Mike about that last night. ?How would you attack us??. They?ll try to spread us out. Now, if we can cover it when they spread us out, then we can get a lot of sacks.

Did he do that well the other night? Yeah. He got one sack that we didn?t count. When we had LT we wouldn?t count those as sacks. We call those freebies, they aren?t sacks. Him and Junior Glymph.