On Thursday, Dec. 26, 2013, Redskins HC Mike Shanahan addressed the media following afternoon practice at Redskins Park in Ashburn, VA.
On linebacker Brian Orakpo:
"Rak did not practice today. It [groin] was sore and we'll see how he does tomorrow."
On if Orakpo will sit out Sunday in order to prevent further injury:
"Well, if we feel he can't go, he won't go. But 'Rak, like the rest of our players, if he can play, he wants to play. But we're not going to jeopardize his leg to play for obvious reasons. It's a little sore right now, but there's still a chance."
On running back Alfred Morris and his first two years:
"He's done a great job. Here a guy comes in with very few expectations, and he just kind of keeps his nose to the grindstone and just works. That's what you love to see – a guy have the type of success that he's had. He's got all the things that you look for in a person. He's a hard worker, he sets some good standards for himself and hopefully he has a great future here."
On the message he'll give the team before the game on Sunday:
"You know, what I do is I talk to the team sometimes when you're not playing for a playoff spot, at least from my perspective being a head coach and looking at different games as you evaluate them at the end of the season, you always like to see how guys play when they have nothing to play for. Guys that are out of the playoff hunt, you go back as a head coach or as a GM and you take a look at a lot of the games that players are playing when they're not playing for a playoff spot to see which guys play at a certain standard. I know when I came here I took a look not only at the last games – the three last games of the season – I looked at how they practice, the practice squad players over the last three weeks. I think you can tell a lot about somebody when they're not necessarily playing for a playoff spot."
On his family dealing with speculation about his job security in the media:
"I mean that's part of the job. We understand what goes with our job. Our job is to win and if you don't win, good things don't happen. We understand that. We've been in it for a while. I think when you're a little bit younger and it's your first experience, you see how it affects everybody – not that it doesn't affect you when you're older, but you've been through it before. You understand the highs and lows of the profession and you deal with it. If you deal with it too much then you're not in the profession very long. But it comes with the territory."
On what type of shape he would leave the team in if this is his last season:
"I could answer that question, but this is not the time to answer it. The time to answer that is at the end of the season if things don't work out. But I'll get into that detail and that would be easy for me to do. If you talked about offense, talked about defense, special teams, talked about what our goals were, the people we had here, the people that are gone, talked about the first two years – we'll talk about it in detail if you want to and over the third year when you do kind of adjust your squad. I'd be more than happy to talk about it but now is not the time."
On what he's learned about offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan after working with him over the past four years:*
"I think anytime you have somebody run an offense, defense or special teams, you get a chance to see them do it in game situations. And you see them run the meetings in front of everybody, not just the wide receivers or the quarterbacks but it's the offensive line, it's the tight ends. Very quickly players let you know what coaches do during the season. You can tell the way the players respond to them if they're getting the job done or not. And I think since I've been in the National Football League players tell you very quickly if somebody's helping them get better and stay in the game."