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Wade Phillips press conference 9/4/08 - Terence Newman injury update

Paraphrase of Wade Phillips' press conference today.

Kosier, Spencer, Hurd and Austin didn’t practice, the same thing all week. It was a good practice, they were into it, I want it to be this way all the time, excited, focused. I want it to feel like the first week, every week of the season. Be excited about playing every week. We did blitz work on offense and defense, we emphasized the running game on both sides of the ball, and tomorrow we’ll work the redzone, short yardage stuff.

Terence Newman is in the process of getting back into it, you need to bring him along slowly, we learned that last year when we just kind of threw him back in there, We haven’t determined if he will start yet, we’ve limited him since he came back. Adam Jones has been used when we limited Newman, if it’s not Newman, Adam will start. There’s always a question of him even playing, want to see where he is. It’s a process, he hadn’t practice really since OTA’s, I don’t want throw him in there for the whole game. We feel good about how Adam has played.

[Ed. Note – It really did sound like Wade was hinting that Newman wouldn’t start and might be playing the nickel or some role on the sub packages. Kind of a new development.]

Kevin Burnett has done well, he feels good, his is a little different from Newman, he was only out a couple of weeks out and he’s come back from this same thing before. We haven’t limited him. (Special teams for him, too?) Important to have our best players out there and he’s a good special teamer, and Keith Davis will help us, too. He was voted special teams captain today. That’s pretty significant, shows the players have a lot of faith in him.

The captains are Keith on special teams, on defense its Ellis, Hamlin and Bradie. Om offense its Romo, Witten, Terrell Owens and Barber. We did the vote and I usually limit it to one or two captains, but the voting was so close, and those guys got so many votes, I gave him what they wanted and named them all captains. We’ll rotate the coin toss each week. They got voted in, we always say just one captain, but the team voted for them, that’s what they wanted.

Some of the starters play backup roles on special teams, if you need them they could play. Most are in backup roles. But if a guy plays a lot of regular plays, plus special teams, that could be too much. But we use some starters on one special team. Like Henry will be on the punt return team, he’s the jam guy. Roy covers on the kickoff team, he always covered kicks. Ware is on the FG rush, but those are the only teams they are on.

It says a lot about Keith Davis that he was voted a captain, it shows his credibility. It was overwhelming how many votes he got. Most of these guys were around him last year.

We’re not afraid of the hype around the team, the preseason “guesses.” We’re into the hype of this first game, and playing the best we can, and that’s as far as we go. Only thing we can do anything about is this upcoming game and that’s as far as the players go.

We have a plan for Felix on how much we utilize him, but it will be a feel thing with Jason Garrett. He needs to get comfortable with how much to utilize him. It’s hard to sub for Barber because he’s an outstanding player, we have a lot of confidence in Felix but a whole lot in Marion. We plan on utilizing him or Pacman on kickoffs.

I wasn’t surprised Marion was voted a captain even though he’s quiet, he is such a leader by example. He runs hard in practice, he runs faster than everybody in the drills, he stays after practice catching the ball, he’s a leader by example so it didn’t surprise me. Was surprised by his piano playing, I’m not an expert but it sounded good, unless it had one those automatic player things on it. (laughter) I told him I was impressed, I asked him if he could read music, he said played by ear, someone told me he hasn’t been playing long.

Lots of small talk about Hard Knocks.


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