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Gregg Williams Media Session

On how the will handle playing on Sunday:

"The one thing that I'm at peace with is I know Sean wants us to play. He'll be with me for the rest of my career. I know he is always going to be pestering me, wanting to go back in. When he pesters me he doesn't want to go back in and just play it safe. He wants to go back in and be right in the middle of the toughest action there is. That's how we'll handle it. That's how I'll handle it."

On if he has felt a need to be strong for his players:

"Oh yeah, there's no doubt about that. One of the real comforting things, and I've said this as much as I could, I fell fast. I've had a smile on my face. Of all the people you have had a chance to talk to the last few days, they can't fake how they feel about him right? There have been people that have maybe substantiated some of my own feelings that I have had for the last four years that some people have raised their eye brows about. The kid was who he was behind the scenes and I'm sorry that you didn't get a chance to see as much as that as the rest of us did and what I knew and what I saw. I think that is extremely comforting. I've had a real nice smile on my face because he touched an awful lot of people in a short amount of time. I had an opportunity to see him at point A and had an opportunity to influence him to point B. I think Brett Fuller, Pastor Fuller, said that very well yesterday that is just a shame that we're not going to see [point] C and how far from A to B there was. By choice he made some extremely maturing decisions and I was real proud of those, very, very, very proud of those. I knew there was still a lot to come. I knew he was on the right path to make those decisions. Again, it's a shame that we're not going to get a chance to see the finished product."

On Sean Taylor being like a son to him:

"You all had a chance to see his competitive spirit and sometimes misunderstood spirit. I always saw the big heart from the first time he came in here. I always saw his love for kids, his love for my own kids. I have three kids that are very, very close to him. It has been devastating to them. My two sons treated him like three brothers. They were the three amigos. One of the things that they used to always rib and laugh with me about was Sean would say, ?You know what, I get the ass chewing's during the day, you guys might as well get them at night.' They would always poke fun at me about the things that they got from a tough love standpoint from me. There were a few of those tough love things with him, but there was more behind the scene things of just sharing things about growing up, sharing things about life. My oldest son, the last two years as an intern, as a coach- he has the world by the tail; Five years in Princeton, now he wants to be a stupid coach like his dad- is he got to be pretty close to him too just from that atmosphere. There was a very closeness that went on back and forth behind the scenes that I wasn't even aware of and didn't even know was going on. The communication, the weekly communication and all that kind of stuff that they did. My youngest son wears 21. He has ever since he moved to Virginia and started playing. He's a pretty good young player now. There are a lot of people on him all of a sudden as a unanimous all-district player and as a 15 year old sophomore. Sean enjoyed seeing his improvement. He wears 21 because his dad said that Sean Taylor is the best player he ever coached. So he wears 21 because he hopes that some of that karma will wear off on him. There are a lot of things that you struggle with, you think about. The one thing that is most comforting about it is that he always loved getting in between the white lines. The thing that I think he respected most about me is we were both a certain way outside the white lines, but inside the white lines there is only one way to play and that is all out. I've had to work very, very hard throughout my coaching career to try to speed people up. To try find another way to get more aggressiveness, to find another way to ask you do more. I never had to ask him, never. When he hit ground here in Ashburn he was full speed, full throttle, full competition at every point in time. If there was a marquee player on the other side of the field, he wanted that match up. We talk a lot about in competition about who wants the ball at the end of the game. Who wants the last shot? Who wants the last tackle? 21 wanted it. At some point in time, at the sacrifice of the defense, he would go get that particular player because of that. I have a tremendous admiration because of that kind of a spirit. Like I said, he'll be with me from now on."

On players looking to him during this time:

"There is no blueprint. There is no exact way that you have to go about it. You have to be true and you have to be strong. You have to provide an example and provide the things that we enjoy about the young man, so that you get through the tough times when you're a little bit sad about the things that you're not going to get a chance to go through with him again. This is a tough business so what we have to do is we bounce back. If you want to honor him, then honor him the right way because he loves to play and would want to play one more time."

On people crediting him with bringing Sean Taylor to Washington:

"There were a lot of people involved in that decision. Just because I happen to be at the top on that side of the ball a lot of people have said that, but there were a lot of people involved in that decision. I probably had the strongest views about it. Those kinds of guys, very, very, very, very few times do they come around in life. It was easy to spot. I laugh and joke with you guys, you guys can even figure out the good players. Some of the other ones you have a hard time trying to figure out. It's easy to see how good of a player he was. Whenever you're going to come in the family here and be a part of the Redskins family that Joe Gibbs (Head Coach) was starting up and he was our first draft choice and he was the first one that I had a chance to have a say in bringing here. It was pretty easy to see all the physical skills that he had. Until you're around somebody for long periods of times, through ups and downs, goods and bads, you find out the true character of an individual. I've expressed hands down and I've said this over and over again, what strong character he had. I can only judge what I have been able to see behind the scenes and what I have been able to see with face-to-face interaction with him. The mold was broke when they made him and he will be missed."

On when Sean Taylor was able to trust him:

"A large part of his life was about earning and gaining respect and about trust. All of us throw that word around a little bit. All of us have percentages put on it. He had one type of percentage, 100%. Those are things that are built every day. With Sean, the trust part of it is that you can't take a step backwards because you lose trust and you never regain trust. You guys didn't get a chance behind the scenes to see how smart he was. Even though we questioned some of the [actions] there at times, he had a very good sense of people and reading people. I don't know when he was able to trust me. I think some of the tough times when I backed some of his goofy decisions and some of the things that we had to do behind the scenes from a tough love. I do know this, there were a couple times when I drew lines in the sand that he appreciated that toughness and that discipline. He needed that. To his credit he made some tremendous, tremendous life maturations. I feel real good. I can lay my head down and know that a couple of those things I asked him to do, he did it."

On how he deals with losing Sean Taylor:

"It's not easy. I don't that think you ever get over it. The big thing is he is looking at me now making sure I answer that question right. He is going to measure me every single day. I think that strength I get from him, we shared that strength with each other. I didn't know whether I would share this with you or not, but one of the things that I do on the sideline with him is sometimes you guys would see me getting in the middle of him on the sideline. I would be losing it and I would just be on him trying to get a different focus back with him. His sense of people, and he could see me losing it a little bit, pretty pissed. He would look at me and smile and say, ?Hey, Coach, that play is over, get on to the next one.' He would immediately put me right back into I have a job to do too. I have to get right back there and go. We had a synergy back and forth in those difficult times. We built that trust and love for each other in the difficult times so that there was an ever stronger bond in some of the less stressful periods of time. He is a special young man."

On getting back to practice:

"Obviously yesterday was a difficult time. As we started practice I was real interested to see how we would do it. Each period that went through practice, things were better. Today things were better. We're kind of able to escape for a little bit of time of the day on getting around the things we all have a bond on- a love to play the game, a love to compete. That's kind of an escape for all us when we get out there between the white lines. Today the practice was extremely energetic and right back in true form. To be quite truthful, that was part of the message that I had with the defense yesterday about our response to practice and our response to performance and our response to production and preparation, all that kind of stuff. Much better. Each day will be a growing experience, but today was very good."

On the Buffalo Bills:

"I see a real tough, young team. There is a team that has battled through an awful lot of adversity. They have a huge offensive line and they have some big time playmaking receivers. Some receivers that rival some of the playmaking guys we have seen here the last two, three weeks. I don't know what the deal is this year, but we are on the schedule for all these big time speed receivers this year. They have a young quarterback that really has come in stressful conditions and done pretty well, managed the game pretty well. We are going to have some similar play concepts that we have seen from the last few weeks, but then some other different things there too that we are going to have to be able to do defensively against these guys. Looking forward to the match up, but obviously they are going to pose some huge challenges for us."

On how big of a change he saw Sean Taylor go through when he became a father:

"It was huge. That was just on more step of maturation for him. You're always looking for teachable moments as a parent, as a coach, as any type of a leader and all of a sudden now, when I could relate some decisions back to him and some examples back to him that I would want him to change or correct I said, ?You're a father now, you deal with it. You're having the same conversations a few years from now that I'm having with you.' It was interesting to see that light click on in his head in wanting to be a really, really good example. Hopefully you guys have a ton of footage of those moments, when he wouldn't talk to you guys after training camp, who did he stop and talk to? Everyday he stopped and talked to the kids. Everyday in training camp. When he talked to the kids it wasn't, ?Hey will you guys look at me talk to these kids?' He was trying to be as inconspicuous as he could because he didn't want the kids to feel anything other than he wanted to talk to them. He wanted to make sure that they got the experience. He felt the experience would change if you all got involved. Obviously the birth of his daughter was another step. It's unfortunate. It will be hard for her to remember."

On Reed Doughty (S, #37):

"He has been out there the last two weeks in an injury situation. Pierson (Prioleau, S, #20) has been out there in another situation or two that is hard for some of you to recognize when he is playing in some of Sean's deals. Those are things that will maybe be in their memory of the experience. I even thought about that on Matt Sinclair (LB, #58) getting the roster spot. He has worked hard and has deserved an opportunity. We didn't just frivolously assign him that spot. He earned the spot, but how the spot came open, that's tough too. Everybody has to deal with those things and I don't know that there is any right or wrong way of how you go about dealing with it. In Reed's circumstance and even Matt, Sean would have said, ?Let's go. Cut it loose, let's go'."

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