What was at stake on the field goal?
“We just did it at the end of the game, two-minute drive. So, we were down one point, [Denver Broncos head coach] Vic [Fangio] made the score 1-0, defensive guy. I thought it was more like 39-38, but we were down one, so it was just last second for the field goal. It was neat, Vic and [K] Robbie [Gould] had a relationship in Chicago, so he iced him, tried to ice him, called a timeout, so it was a good kick.”
How long was that kick?
“I’m not sure, I’m guessing about 47.”
The scoreboard said it was on the 37.
“Robbie probably said it was 65.”
There was some chirping going on before that.
“Yeah, oh, you mean real chirping? Yeah, they got into a little scuffle over there. I actually wasn’t on the field, so I didn’t see much of it. By the time I got over there, it was pretty much broken up. I know a couple guys got sent in. I was told none of our guys threw punches, so when I see the tape, we’ll see if they were telling the truth. Hopefully they were.”
What kind of feedback was defensive coordinator Robert Saleh giving you on how the defense practiced these last two days?
“I think he was real excited with it. There were some good things and some bad. I thought, I’ve got to really see the tape today, because we’re on separate fields, but yesterday I was really happy with how we carried ourselves, how we played as a team, our tenacity, how we ran to the ball and I thought that gave us a chance to do pretty well. We were not perfect by any means. We had a bunch of mistakes, left a few open guys where the quarterback, unfortunately, went the other way. So, you just try to temper that. I like the team we have, love the players and how they’re really playing aggressive and things like that, but if you really want to be not just a high defense, you want to be one of the best, you’ve got to be very detailed in what you do also.”
What did QB Jimmy Garoppolo get out of these two days and how much are you going to play him on Monday night?
“I haven’t decided how much we’re going to play him on Monday night. Want to play him. A lot has to do with when we watch his film from these two practices, how long we do play all our starters, what O-Linemen are available and things like that. I’d like him to get in there for a little bit. Not as much as Week 3. Anytime you go against a different defense, it gets very monotonous in camp going against the same coverages every day, some different fronts, different looks, different techniques, so it was a good day. We get more out of these two practices than we will in the game.”
Do you feel like WR Richie James Jr. kind of stepped up a little bit in these last few days?
“Yeah. I mean, I think he’s done a good job and stepped it up throughout camp, so I wouldn’t say there was a big difference in these two days. I think he’s done a real good job. We had a few guys go out, especially coming here, too, we’re a little low on receivers. It’s been a challenge for these guys to get through these high rep practices. All of them are working pretty hard and I know all of them are pretty gassed and hopefully they’ll be able to recover here over the next two days before our game.”
How nice is it to see that Mike Shanahan guy walking around here again?
“It’s pretty cool. I didn’t see him at all at practice because I was pretty focused on practice. I heard he was doing a press conference in between it, that’s what these guys told me. No, I love having my dad out. He comes out to San Francisco, too, so that’s not that unusual to see him out there. But, this is my first time back here since my dad left, which is college for me. Looks completely different. This thing was never here, there used to be a bubble that blew down one day, so the facility looks great. It’s good to see a lot of old people and really enjoyed our time here.”
Is it kind of surreal you get to walk the same footsteps your dad did for so many years, regardless of what this looks like, it’s still the same facility?
“Yeah. I mean, I’ve been in the NFL for a pretty long time, so I’ve gone through a lot of that stuff, just doing the same job as my dad, which I think a lot of kids do. But, it was different walking into this building, walking up to the office the first day we got here to go see Vic. It’s been remodeled a bunch, so I was a little confused in there, but it was really neat to be in there. I’ve got a lot of memories here. I spent probably every day from when we came here as a freshman in high school until I left. Every time I’d come back from college I spent time here. So, the relationships I had and how much that helped me in my career, it’s a very special place.”
Do you go through with Vic, like talk about each other’s rosters, like is there any area where you’re deep where we need some help? Have you done that with Vic?
“Yeah, you always do that with people that you’re close to and that you trust and respect. Vic is as high in that in any category as any guy in this league. We talk a lot, but you’ve also got to be careful. He’s also very smart. No, we want to help each other out, but you also always want to win, too. You’ve got to think of your team first, but anytime you have someone that you can be close to like that and is in a different conference, it does give you an advantage to communicate a little bit more.”
It seems like when a play breaks down Jimmy’s always trying to make something out of it. How do you balance that instinct, I’m sure you’d like to see him throwing into available situations, throwing picks?
“I love people that makes plays, but interceptions lose games. So, you can’t keep both teams in the game. You’ve got to make plays for your own team. You can’t make them for both teams. If you keep both teams in the game, you’re going to have to be a lot more conservative to make sure you’re not put in those situations.”
Where do you see him as far as that balance? Would you like him to throw the ball out of bounds more than he does?
“Yeah, definitely. It’s also about, I think guys who have very talented arms think they can make every throw. Sometimes, you’ve got to learn that, I know you can make it, but the percentages go way down, progress to the next guy. If there’s two guys on this guy, I know you can get it in there, you’re that talented, but it’s a lot easier if you can just move to the next guy. I think it can be a compliment, but also it can be a detriment to him, too. You see that with a lot of big-arm quarterbacks who have talent and that’s what practice is for. You want to go through that and test it and I think that’s the challenge of practice in this day and age, that we get the stats every day. I don’t, but I know you guys do, which means the players do, so it is a little tougher when you have a practice like he did a few days ago. I’m actually kind of glad that happened, because sometimes you get close to that and you get fortunate on a few things instead of unlucky on a few things. But, you learn from it. It wakes guys up and makes it easier to coach them, and it makes them correct their mistakes.”
From what you know about Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello, what gives you confidence that he can thrive as first time play caller for the Broncos?
“Well, he knows what he’s doing. He’s a very good coach, he’s been in a lot of systems, knows a lot of football. He’s paid his dues throughout college, throughout this league, he’s coached a number of different positions. He’s been around a number of different guys, and he’s more than ready for this opportunity.”
It looked like WR Dante Pettis was challenged quite a bit yesterday. Did he bounce back a little bit more today?
“It seemed like it. We’ll see on the tape. Dante’s getting challenged every day, from our own team and from teams that play him. Dante’s a talented guy and if people just sit back on him, he’s going to make anybody miss. Guys are challenging him, so he’s starting to get used to that a little bit more. He’s not great at it right away, but that’s been the challenge for him this camp. He’s been up and down with it, but what I like seeing from him is he’s not backing away. He’s fighting, and I think he’s better at that now than he was two weeks ago.”
Denver Broncos quarterbacks coach T.C. McCartney is another guy who was on your staff and is here now. Is he kind of a rising star in your mind in the coaching world, what you saw from him?
“Yeah, definitely. I mean, I got to work with T.C. in Cleveland when I was there for a year and then we brought him to San Francisco for three years. T.C. is someone we gave a lot of responsibility to. He was my personal quality control for four years, the other guys who have done that are all coordinators or head coaches in this league, so he’s gotten a lot of experience, he’s paid his dues, he’s been working for a long time and I was really happy for him that Rich gave him an opportunity, or ultimately Vic did. But, he deserved it.”
What kind of camp is WR Marquise Goodwin having? We talk so much about everybody else, but it seems like--?
“I think Quise is having a real good camp. I mean, Quise always does. Quise is always well prepared, is in shape, he has great stamina and he’s had an unbelievable camp three years in a row. The key for Quise is are we going to be able to keep it up throughout the year? I do think, you never know until the year goes, and you can’t control a lot of that stuff, but the way he’s just gone about his business, the way he’s practiced day in and day out, even when he’s not getting the ball and he’s not involved that much, he’s looking the same and just the effort that he has. I think Quise has put himself in position to have a more durable year, and also the fortunate thing is we’ve got some other guys in here that takes a little pressure off Quise to have to do this stuff day in and day out.”
How much do you think about what he was able to accomplish with Jimmy in 2017 in terms of his evaluation and just where you’re at with him and what you think is possible for him this year?
“I think anytime you have success in a short span, it shows how talented these guys are. That’s what everyone knows about Jimmy, that’s what people know about Quise. This league’s about doing it week in and week out. That’s the difference between being a guy who just scares people and a guy who’s there no matter what. Both of them are fighting through that and they both haven’t played a lot, haven’t played a lot together, but that’s what I’m enjoying in camp this year. It’s been awhile since we’ve had the two of them together.”
Any update on DB Antone Exum Jr.?
“I don’t have a term, tweaked his knee, so he’s day-to-day.”
Any relief about OL Mike Person?
“Yeah, definitely. I mean, Person, we don’t have a lot of depth there right now, especially with [G Joshua] Garnett being out and things like that. Person made it through practice, had a little bit of a scare after, but with the x-rays and stuff, going well and he’s day-to-day. So, scary at first, but day-to-day. It’s a good sign.”
What’s the feeling about TE George Kittle’s injury?
“Same thing, day-to-day. I can guarantee you if we were playing today, he’d be out there.”
You said about Week 2 and 3 about Jimmy, you’d like him to play Week 2 but not as much as Week 3?
“Yeah, we always try to get our starters the most playing time in Week 3. Rarely are we going to do that equal in 2 and 3. Again, we haven’t decided yet, it’s also a little bit different with how close all these games are. Once the Broncos game happens, it’s going to be three games in 10 days, so we’ve got a lot to evaluate with that. A lot of it doesn’t just depend on Jimmy. It depends what O-Linemen can go, depends on who they’re playing, how long they go. So, there’s a lot of things that go into it.”