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Quotes: Jay Gruden And Sean McVay (9.11.15)

Head Coach Jay Gruden

Opening statement:

"Tom Compton, calf, did not participate. He's questionable. Robert [Griffin III] finally got cleared. We got the paperwork. He's probable. Frank Kearse, shoulder, full. He's full. Kory Lichtensteiger hurt his finger a little bit. He practiced fully today and he's probable."

On if QB Robert Griffin III will serve as the backup:

"Well, I'm probably the only coach in the league that gets questions on their 46-man roster on a Thursday. We have until Sunday afternoon to turn in our 46-man roster and we're going to do that with everybody."

On when he received the written report on Griffin:

"I believe they got it yesterday afternoon."

On why the news wasn't shared until today:

"It was afternoon after everybody was gone. It was yesterday evening. It's our news."

On if a 48-hour window is enough time for a backup quarterback to practice and prepare:

"He's been practicing. He's been clear for non-contact drills, so he's been out here doing everything – individual drills, some team stuff here and there. He just couldn't do any live contact which we never do in practice anyways. There is really nothing he hasn't been doing. He has been to all of the meetings. He has not missed anything because of this, just he's had to wait on the written clearance. That's all."

On if that means nothing is precluding Griffin from potentially being able to play on Sunday:

"Correct. Correct."

On how T Tom Compton was injured:

"He was kicked in the calf in the last game, then in practice he kind of re-injured it. It's a pulled calf, I believe. He just kind of tweaked it."

On if Compton's injury messes up his plan at tight end:

"Not really. Not really. It has an effect but we have others available."

On if there are any lingering problems with T Trent Williams:

"No. I just found out about that last night, too. He just got his foot stepped on in individual. It was no big deal. He scared a lot of people though, but he's OK."

On if TE Jordan Reed is 100 percent:

"Yes. He's doing good. He looks good. Like I said, he's doing a great job. He's running. He's blocking extremely well. We feel good about where he is. We've just got to keep him that way."

On TE Anthony McCoy's progress:

"He's doing good, but he's just another one that we're going to wait and see. We've got another little walkthrough tomorrow and then we'll get together as a staff and make some decisions on the 46-man roster. But he's doing a good job. I think he'll be ready very shortly."

On how QB Kirk Cousins is handling the role of starting quarterback for the season opener:

"He's handling it very well. He's studying, taking a lot of notes, very conscientious of everything that he's doing and seeing in practice. When he has an issue, we talk about it and we try to get it fixed for him. The Miami Dolphin defense is going to give you some looks. They play a lot of different coverages. They've got a very good blitz package. When you have 16 games you're watching and breaking down and the preseason, that's a lot of stuff you're trying to filter through and you're guessing what they're going to do. You're probably throwing a little more at a young quarterback now then you maybe would Week 6 of a season. But he's handling it very well. We're excited for his start."

On if there has been a noticeable change in Cousins' demeanor since being named the starter:

"I think so. I think when you're a backup quarterback, that is your role. Your role is not to be so much an outwardly leadership type guy. You mainly are a backup guy. You take your reps when you can get them. He was a great backup quarterback. He was very supportive of Robert when he played. He was very supportive of Colt when he played. But now it's his turn, now he can be more vocal. He can ask more questions and be more involved in the game plan, all that stuff. I think he's starting to take that next step. Hopefully it translates."

On Griffin's response to the situation:

"He's responded well. Obviously I'm sure he is frustrated a little bit but we haven't been able to see it. He's in meetings, he's still asking questions and doing everything he's asked to do out there in individual. When he's out there in team work he's throwing the ball good. I haven't seen an issue yet. I haven't read all the Twitter reports, but he has been fine here."

On game planning for Dolphins DT Ndamukong Suh and if he has to guess how Suh will be utilized:

"Yeah, a lot of times that is the case. It's the first game. You try to study the defensive coordinator and what his history is. Of course I knew him [Kevin Coyle] in Cincinnati. We've got a couple good years on him. But then you add a piece like Suh and it could change things drastically for your defense, the calls and what you are doing in short yardage and goal line. That's something we're trying to prepare for, a lot of different looks and assuming what they're going to do. Basically we've got to go by tendencies and go by what we think is going to happen. We're also preparing them for different looks. For a young offensive line that's a little bit tough. It's one thing to work the scheme but it's another thing, 'OK, that is Suh right in front of you.' It'll be a great challenge for [guard Brandon] Scherff and obviously [tackle] Morgan [Moses], and really the left side of the line too. They don't really have any weaknesses on their defensive line. We've just got to do the best we can. Hoping that they're prepared X's and O's wise and then when the ball is rolled out there they're ready to play physically and match up with them."

 Offensive Coordinator Sean McVay

On where he expects Dolphins DT Ndamukong Suh to lineup:

"What we've seen so far from those guys in the preseason film that they put out there, we've seen Suh lineup on the right side. So, we're expecting him to be lined up over Brandon [Scherff]. We know it's going to be a great challenge for him and I think he's excited about that."

On his expectations for the tight ends:"Anytime that you lose two guys like Logan [Paulsen] and Niles [Paul], they are going to be sorely missed. They were great players, great influences on their teammates in terms of the way they worked and carried themselves each and every day, but I think Coach [Wes] Phillips has done a great job getting some of these guys that are just getting here – Derek Carrier just a few weeks ago, we just got [Anthony] McCoy, getting Jordan Reed back going – so we're very confident in them and excited about what they're going to do on Sunday."

On deciding how to split time between the running backs:"You always want to try to be able to establish the run game and each game is kind of its own entity and you want to be able to see how it plays out. But Alfred Morris is a guy that's been reliable and productive for the last three years and he'll get the bulk of the carries, but what Matt Jones has shown is extremely encouraging and exciting for us. He's a guy that you definitely want to find a way to get him some touches, be able to spell Alfred and keep him fresh. So we're looking to get both those guys going on Sunday."

On QB Kirk Cousins' connection with WR DeSean Jackson:"Just getting DeSean back within the last couple of weeks where he started to really practice, you're excited about seeing him and the way he moves around and obviously the big play ability that he brings to our offense. I think those guys were able to hook up on some good, big completions and long gains last year and that's something that you always want to try to find. We're always going to try to start with the run game see what happens off of that, but we are looking forward to hopefully being able to see those guys make some big plays again this year."

On if he has noticed changes in Cousins since Cousins was named starter:"Kirk has always been a pro. He's very mature beyond his years. He's handled himself extremely well. I've always been impressed with him since he came here as a rookie. I've been fortunate enough to be around him and Robert [Griffin III] since they both got into the league. Just watching the way that he's handled both the ups and the downs has been very impressive for a younger guy, but I haven't seen any change in the way that he approaches his preparation. I think certainly it gives you a little bit of the ability to be more demanding on the field, doing some different things with, 'Hey, let's go work some of these routes with those receivers that you're going to be working with.' But his approach has been very similar to how it always has been." 

On how the presence of Dolphins DE Cameron Wake complicates the matchup with Suh:

"That's a great question. That is probably why I haven't slept a lot this week. He's a great player. Those are two special players. They've got two players on the other side in Mitchell and Olivier Vernon that we think are outstanding as well. It definitely complicates some things. You always want to have a plan in place to try to potentially help guys out with some of those protection adjustments that you may or may not have to make. Like we were talking about with Brandon going against a great player in Suh, we know Morgan Moses has the same challenge in Cameron Wake and it's going to be exciting for us."

On if there has been a common theme in Cousins' turnovers in the past:

"I think the biggest thing is as a quarterback you always want to start with being a great decision maker, treating each play as its own entity and not feeling like if you're playing from behind you have to get it all back at once. Take what the defense gives you. We'd like to give these guys plays that have answers versus whatever defensive looks the defensive coordinator presents. Just take it one play at a time and be a good decision maker and I think that will eliminate some of those turnovers that we've seen in the past."

On the improvement in the running backs' blocking:

"I think that's a big point of emphasis that [Running Backs] Coach [Randy] Jordan makes with those guys. Certainly the more game film that you get the better chance you have to evaluate. On a daily basis when we do put the pads on we always try to get running backs and linebackers going against each other in blitz protection drills. I think with the three backs that we're counting on with Alfred [Morris], Matt [Jones] and Chris Thompson, all those guys have showed encouraging signs. Hopefully they'll step up to the challenge if they're using those protection situations."

On if he prepares contingency plans if communication issues arise with the headsets:

"When that does occur it definitely throws a kink in some of the plans that you have. That's why you always want to be hand-signal ready and have some of those communication adjustments if necessary. It's happened with us before and you always have to have a contingency plan in place. It certainly makes it a lot more stressful in terms of being able to change personnel groupings, getting the plays in and out, especially within the framework of the play clock."

On if headset issues limit play calling:

"It does. A lot of these things, if you want to be able to call two plays at once, it limits your ability because of the time where you can't just press a button and get it in. You might have to signal it, which takes a little bit longer, or you might have to send in a substitution, give him the play. It definitely does take away some of the game plan with where you can't hand signal everything that you have."

On how QB Robert Griffin III has handled the last few weeks:

"He's been very impressive. He's handled himself very maturely. I've been impressed with just the way he's gone about his business each and every day. I think it's a credit to his character and the way he's handled himself through a tough situation."

On if there are things Cousins can do to help the offensive line against Miami's defensive front:

"Certainly, you always have a game plan to try to attack whatever personnel you're going against each and every week. I think the big thing that we talk about is being able to establish the run. It slows the pass rush down. He'll do some different things in the pass game and maybe a couple different schemes, protection-wise, but the big plan or the big point of emphasis that we make to him is to just execute the game plan. Whatever plays we're deciding to run, make sure you do a great job executing those based on whatever [Miami Dolphins Defensive Coordinator] Coach [Kevin] Coyle decides to play defensively."

On if they talked about Cousins' release as it relates to avoiding the pass rush:

"What you certainly do is you make sure, 'Hey, let's stay in the timing and rhythm of the play. Let's understand that there's probably going to be a little bit more push than some of the other fronts that you might play.' But as long as he stays within the timing and rhythm of some of these plays that we're trying to execute but certainly getting the football out of your hand and not being able to hold it all day against an excellent rush is a big point of emphasis for us."

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