On Wednesday, July 24, 2013, Redskins NT Barry Cofield addressed the media following the training camp conditioning test at the Bon Secours Washington Redskins Training Center in Richmond, Va.
On if this is the real first day, or more like an orientation:
"With that conditioning workout we just did it's a real first day. It was intense and everybody passed with flying colors so it's a great start. Everyone's excited, it's a beautiful facility and there's a lot of energy out here."
On the biggest difference between being in Richmond and being in Ashburn:
"Probably just the newness and I think the newness generates excitement. I think it's all about the excitement of a new facility, new surroundings and the fan presence. We expect the fans to come out by the thousands to be and join us down in Richmond. I've been hearing about it all summer, the fans are really excited and we feed off of them so it's a great opportunity."
"It's just getting away. Getting away from your comfort zone, and spending more time with the guys, living in the same hotel, riding shuttles to and from practice, eating all of our meals together, those things are…you can build a bond and if can take advantage of the opportunity it can be beneficial for us."
"I think there are a lot of benefits. We're all in the hotel together, we're riding the shuttle together, you're building a friendship, a bond that a lot of times is hard to attain in the NFL when everyone goes home as opposed to a college atmosphere where you're in dorms and things like that. There's a lot to gain here and if maximize it, maximize the opportunity, it can be beneficial."
"I'm just excited to be here right now. I know that for a fact. It's a beautiful facility and the hotel is great so I'm excited about this. There's benefits both ways and if we take advantage of the opportunity to get away, and building bond I think it'll be great."
On the realistic expectations that the defense has:
"We want to be a top-five, top-ten defense. We're not in the business of making excuses. It's like we've got some new toys with the guys that we've brought back from injury. A guy like [Brian] Orakpo, a [Brandon] Meriweather, guys like that, that we expected to really help us last year who are just hungry and starving to get out on the field and help us this year so it's extremely exciting and we expect to improve in every aspect."
On if he peeks over at Robert during practice:
"Every day. Every day I want to see how he's doing. He's that important. It's a quarterback driven league and he's one of the best in the league. The work he put in, the amount of hours he put in rehab wise, it's not surprising to see the progress that he's made and I'll be shocked if he wasn't out there Week 1."
On what the team wants to accomplish preseason:
"You want to stay healthy. As crazy as that sounds, that should be your No. 1 goal. Stay healthy while improving in every aspect. A lot of young guys on our team that should make leaps and bounds, a lot of guys coming off injuries that have a lot to prove to themselves, and are coming back to help the team. We just want to grow. We kept most of our guys together from last year and that's a great sign, that's a great start and if we continue to build our bond, we can be a great team."
On how excited he is right now:
"Extremely excited. It's Day 1. Two days in, I'll probably want to go home, sleep in my own bed, but right now extremely excited. Definitely excited about this team. The work we put in and what guys just did in this conditioning test. Guys were flying around and looked in great shape so I think everyone is very serious about 2013."
On what he thinks about the facility so far:
"Very beautiful, very beautiful. They welcomed us with open arms down here. All of the people that we've dealt so far have been amazing and I think guys are excited about being down here for a few weeks."
On the biggest thing gained from being away for camp in the past:
"Probably just being excluded from your normal surroundings, being away from your family, your normal hassles that you may encounter. You really get a chance to bond. You're all living in a hotel together, you're all riding the shuttle together, it's almost like you're going back to the old days so it can be a great growth experience if we optimize it."
On if going away for camp is overrated:
"No, it's not overrated because I'm here right now and that's what we're about to do. I'm here offsite for camp, so I'm excited about it, Coach Shanahan is excited about it, and we feed off of him."
On how it was staying onsite the past two years when he went away with the Giants:
"It was different, but I think we were still productive. It's all about the mindset and the level of intensity that you bring to work. Everyone definitely seems excited about the new atmosphere, everyone's energized and if we can carry that onto the field, we'll be productive."
On what the expectations are like coming off a division title:
"They're extremely high and they may be high on the outside from a lot of people, but inside our building they're extremely high. We have huge expectations. We've worked hard over the offseason, we've prepared like a team that was at the bottom of the barrel. We're not going to carry ourselves like we've got anything figured out. We feel like we have a lot to prove, our back is against the wall and if we keep that approach we can be successful."
On how hard it is to keep that mindset and what a leader has to do to make sure guys don't get complacent:
"It definitely falls on the leaders and the coaching and our coaches have been after us all offseason. Coach Shanahan on down, everyone has been extremely intense and we feed off of them. And as a leader and a captain, it's my job to make sure no one is content. And I haven't seen any of that and I think the new surroundings… this brought a different energy, I think guys are feeding off that. There's too much excitement and too much energy around here for anybody to be content with anything we've done in the past."
On how much better they can be with all of the guys coming back from injuries:
"I think we can be a lot better, especially on defense, which I speak for. Personally I expect improvements in every aspect, statistically and just the product on the field. Coach Haslett is a great coach, he's a great defensive mind and with all the new parts that we've added, that we've brought back he's extremely excited and we feed off of him so we expect to be top five, top ten defense. Anything less than that we'll be disappointed."
On what he's seen from Bacarri Rambo, David Amerson and other rookies:
"I think those guys have bright futures. If they learn from the best they have around them, if they reall buy into the coaching, and the philosophy we have around here I think the sky is the limit for those guys. They're all extremely talented; they all look the part of professional football players. If they can keep their heads on straight and really focus, we have high aspirations for them."
On what the difference is between a team that was to win seven-straight vs. a consistent contender:
"The biggest concern you have is being content and kind of having an expectation. You should expect to win. You should expect to take the field and feel like you've prepared, that you're the better team, but at the same time with us, the way we finished up. Our goal every year is to win the Super Bowl. So we're not content. We feel like we have a lot to prove and our backs are against the wall so if we can keep that mindset then we'll be successful."
On if there is a different mentality after what the team accomplished last year:
"We definitely built some confidence. When you have that kind of run, you finish the season like that, and then you bring back the same core, you feel like you can do it, you feel like the expectations are high. And then adding the players that we have off of injury and the rookies that we've added we definitely feel like we can compete. And if you can have that feeling and at the same time play like a team no one expects to win, it's a great combination."
On the Bon Secours Washington Redskins Training Center:
"It's beautiful. It's a amazing. Everyone in Richmond has welcomed us with open arms. We're very excited to be here, spend a few weeks here, and we can't wait for the fans to turn out by the thousands and support us and we feed of them."
On the best thing he did this offseason non-football related:
"I hosted my second annual "Big Man" camp in Cleveland for offensive and defensive lineman. A lot of times you see seven-on-seven camps all that kind of stuff. The offensive and defensive lineman don't get that type of love and attention so we welcome in all the big guys every year and it was a great opportunity.'
On if he's in favor of HGH testing and if he would do it:
"Absolutely. I think the vast majority of the guys would, don't rely on HGH. As long as it's done right. We've got the brain trust. Guys are working to get it done, to get the testing procedure down. But I think everyone and all the fans want to see a great game."
On what he thinks the standard is for the testing being administered correctly:
"I really can't say for sure. Obviously you want an appropriate appeals process and that's why you higher your reps, and your playing union heads. We expect those guys to protect us. The NFL is a powerful business; they're going to do what's right and I'm sure we can all come to an agreement."
On how many guys he thinks use HGH in the NFL:
"Like you said it's too hard to even estimate. I don't think it's an epidemic. I think the majority of us would like to see a clean game. I think that's what we're all striving for."
On his reaction to the news of Robert being cleared…
"I wasn't surprised. With the amount of work he put in, the hours and hours of rehab, I mean he's a true professional and with the freak that he is physically, it doesn't surprise me. I'm happy for him, I'm excited for him and I'm excited for Redskins fans because they get to see their guy out there doing what he does best and that's electrify the crowd."
On if there was a stern warning against rushing him in practice:
"There's always a stern warning getting after him. That hasn't changed. I don't think anyone wants to see him touched for the next few weeks and hopefully he'll be 100 percent when Philly shows up."
On if he went out last night, what he thinks of Richmond:
"I did not get out. Everything I've seen has been great. The people around have been great, everyone that has helped us has been amazing so I'm eager to get out and see some of the sites."
On his youth football camp in Cleveland:
"It was mostly a local thing back in Cleveland. One of my friends, a good friend of mine, Rob Sims is an offensive lineman for the Detroit Lions, he handles the O-line, I handle the D-line. It's a free camp we put on and it's a great experience."