Bruce Kluckhohn-US PRESSWIRE
Quotes from Jim Schwartz's Wednesday media session.
On CB Drayton Florence: "Well, we certainly have a plan and we'll execute that plan as the week goes on and see how he does with that. He's been progressing very well and has worked very hard to come back."
On what Florence brings to the team while on the field: "He's been a good player for a long time. He's a veteran player, has experience, he has toughness, he's got size. We've missed him these last eight weeks."
On Florence helping out with safety if necessary: "He has size and we have used guys like that in the past. We'll just see where our corner situation is with Chris Houston in particular and go forward from there. But he is multi-dimensional. He can play inside, he can play outside. He does have a lot of experience."
On S Erik Coleman: "He got poked in the eye and had a headache from getting poked in the eye. It looks like he went through a championship fight. It's not -- I mean, I guess that's an injury but it's not so much the eye as much as the headache that went along with it."
On third downs: "The first thing is the longer you have the more time it takes to get routes down the field and the more time your pass rush has to get there or your pass protection has to hold up. So that's the first part of it. Second of all, defenses know when it's third down and 12, third down and 11, third down and 15, and they're not going to defend the four or five yard routes in those situations. It makes it a lot easier for a defense, No. 1, to eliminate some of the things they have to defend but also buys some time for their pass rushers to get there.
"It's important for us on defense to put teams in third-longs. That's why you see a lot of screens and things like that. You see teams that get real aggressive in those situations a lot of time end up with turnovers. Then on offense it's important for us to stay out of those. A lot is made of teams being one-dimensional. Not having the run or not having the pass or something like that. But that's one of those cases where you are truly one-dimensional because there is not a whole lot that you can do other than push the ball deep down the field if you want to get the first down."
On kick starting the offense earlier and seeing teams go to hurry-up offense and no huddle: "I mean we do that. No huddle is a big part of what we do. But again, even if you're no huddle, it still makes sense to make good decisions. We certainly want to be aggressive on offense. We want to score touchdowns and those things but you need to combine that with making good decisions and not turning the ball over, too. I think those both - doesn't sound like they go hand-in-hand - but those decisions go hand-in-hand. A lot also depends on how well you are running the football and how that is affecting coverage too as far as getting the offense jump started. We did with our run game the week before. We've done it with our pass game. However we do it, we just have to get in the end zone more in the first half."
On CB Charles Woodson being out and LB Clay Matthews potentially out: "They've played well without having Woodson in the last few weeks. It remains to be seen if Clay Matthews will be out. He has rushed very well this year. I don't want to say a down year, but statistically, a little bit of a down year last year. He's made plays all over the field. Sacks, tackles for loss, really putting the offense behind the chains a lot of times. It's the way their defense is. They're a top 10 interception team, a top 10 third down team, top 10 sack team. That's been their lifeblood. This year and last year statistically they were a really good defense. They haven't really made a whole lot of changes scheme-wise. They have rushed the passer a lot better. They have about as many sacks right now through nine games as they had all season last year and obviously Clay Matthews is a big part of that. They also have a good rotation and have a good player in (LB Frank) Zambo that has been on the injury/reserve or PUP, whatever, they get him back. That's a team, particularly a couple of years ago, dealt with a lot of injuries at the linebacker position. They lost Nick Barnett, they lost Brandon Chillar, made some adjusts and ended up in the Super Bowl. So they've certainly done it in the past if they have to."
On TE Tony Scheffler's role decreasing as T Riley Reiff's role increases: "I wouldn't say necessarily Scheffler's role, but all of our tight ends have been on the field a little bit less. That's not necessarily a bad thing. Sort of the way we rotate our defensive line trying to keep guys fresh and things like that. It's cut into (Brandon) Pettigrew's reps also. But again, we're not judging anything on any kind of ratios or anything else. It's been a good package for us. It's been potent from a running standpoint but also particularly last week from a passing standpoint. We'll just continue to put guys out, but it hadn't been just Scheff. Will Heller and Pettigrew also and you can look at it a lot of different ways. I don't necessarily look at it is as it's a bad thing. Those plays that we call, they're either going to be blocking or in pass protection anyway. Rather than just being extra snaps we've got a guy that's pretty good at doing those things and it's been a good package."
On QB Aaron Rodgers: "We certainly have a lot of respect for him. His touchdown/interception is pretty much insane right now. 25/5. They score a lot of touchdowns. You look at a stat sheet all you want, touchdowns are a pretty good stat. He's done it by taking care of the football; he's got a great command of their offense. He's obviously very comfortable and has been in his whole career. He's got good mobility. He's always used his legs at times No. 1 to gain yards but No. 2 to buy time for receivers down the field. Can quick release but also can hold the ball and attack all down the field. He attacks every inch of the field and he makes good decisions. He's got an arm that can make every throw. We certainly have a lot of respect. We play him twice a year and we've seen him first hand. He's won a Super Bowl. He's got that to his resume so it's not just statistics for him. He's been a winner."
On CB Pat Lee: "Pat has good experience in the League. He's got good size. He's another guy that's got some multi-dimension stuff, and it's very rare that those guys become available. When he did become available and he had starting experience at Oakland this year. So a little bit like we talked about with Drayton, get a veteran guy and guy that's good size, got some flexibility, has also been a very good special teams contributor. I think that was a good get for us, particularly at this point of the year. What his role is remains to be seen. We'll see how he progresses this week and what makes best sense for Sunday if anything."
On how different their offense is without WR Greg Jennings: "I think what you've seen is a little bit like us when we lost (WR Nate) Burleson and both (WR) Titus (Young) and (WR Ryan) Broyles immediately stepped up and started catching touchdowns and making plays. It's very similar thing that's happened to them with (WR) Randall Cobb. Cobb last year early in the season in particular when they were full health was a kick returner and they used him for a couple special plays on offense. When Jennings went down he became their starting slot receiver. Led them in receptions, has made a lot of big plays and they've used him in a lot of different roles. Used him in the backfield, he's carried the ball, he gets short passes, worked him down the field. He's a guy that really stepped up when Jennings went down and their offense didn't lose any production. It's like what we said with our safeties. That's the name of the game in the NFL. A little bit easier said than done, and it's a big compliment to him and the way their offense has incorporated him. He's kept a special teams role also. Still returning kicks and punts and he's a dangerous player back there. We'll have to play our best on special teams."