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Quotes: OTAs Day 7

Posted Jun 3, 2013

Head coach Gary Kubiak spoke to the media following Monday's practice.


Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(on practice today) “We had a lot of mistakes but I probably gave them a little bit too much. But we’ll come back tomorrow. Got three more days this week to get these OTAs in and get a bunch of stuff taught and then go into the mini-camp, decide how we’re going to go about that next week. Just need to have a good week.”

(on what he’d like to see from his team by the end of the mini-camp) “What I’m doing right now, to be honest with you, probably have got everyone way overloaded, all these young guys. I’m really trying to see what they can handle. We’re throwing a bunch at them every day, just seeing who can keep up and really trying to send a message to them of what they’re going to have to handle when we come back. You expect some of these things. But it’s interesting because you see some of them handle it. You see some of them struggling right now. We’ll sort it all out but try to get them all in position to compete in July.”

(on if the offense appears to be behind the defense because so much information is being thrown at them) “I don’t feel that way. I just think we’ve got a lot of young guys, so they’re going to make mistakes. And like I said, we had a few today that I take responsibility for because of what I’m trying to see from them. Other than that, I don’t see a behind factor. I don’t see that at all.”

(on how the team is doing health-wise) “We’re fine. Everybody’s alright, I think so.”

(on NT Earl Mitchell) “(NT) Earl (Mitchell) is doing really well. Earl’s obviously a starter and he acts like one right now. He’s just very confident in what he’s doing. Usually that’s what you’ll see when a guy gets that opportunity, they’ll take it and run with it. Everything this offseason, not just OTAs, has indicated that Earl is ready for his turn. (I’m) proud of what he’s done so far.”

(on what he’s seen from P Shane Lechler) “He’s got a big leg and obviously he can directional punt really well. That’s important. That’s something we struggled with in the past. I really like the work he does inside the 20. But I think the biggest thing is he gives everybody (on) special teams confidence. When he talks, those guys listen because he has such respect from his years in the League.”

(on which young players are jumping out at him) “There’s quite a few. I don’t know. When I say young players, I include (WR) Keshawn (Martin) and (WR) Lestar (Jean) and people like that, and (RG) Brandon (Brooks). They’re young players. Defensively, I think I’ve said this a few times, watching (OLB) Whitney (Mercilus) work this year. All of the sudden he goes, he’s a full-time starter. He’s a very young player. He’s obviously much improved in everything he’s done. So that will be the key to our team this year; how quick guys like Whitney become four- and five-year players instead of second-year players. But they’ve had a good offseason. It’s been good.”

(on what he’s seen from CB Brandon Harris and SS Eddie Pleasant) “I kind of put all those guys in that same category. They’re second-year guys or third-year guys that have been role players on this team that all of the sudden their roles are a lot bigger. Like I said, that’s a key to our improvement, is guys like that becoming big-time players. They won’t be the role players anymore. They’ll be frontline guys so they’ve got to step up and do a good job.”

(on how Brandon Brooks has stepped up to handle the responsibility of being a starter) “Good. We’re not in pads so it’s tough to see linemen but the biggest thing, he’s comfortable mentally in what he’s doing so his physical talents have taken over. He went and took care of himself this offseason. Y’all can see how he came back, so that tells you how important it is to him.”

(on what he is seeing from a very young group at outside linebacker) “Well, you see the ability. Obviously, getting the two guys in the draft in (OLB Sam) Montgomery and (OLB) Trevardo (Williams), they bring a lot of rushing-the-passer experience with them. The key is, can we get them in the right place and do the right things with them? So if anything, the fact that we are so young, these OTAs have been very, very important to those guys and moving Brooks (Reed) has let them work with the first and second group. How far they come will be crucial to our success.”

(on how OLB Bryan Braman fits into the competition at outside linebacker) “Very much so. I mean, (OLB) Bryan’s (Braman) basically working as a starter. He’s a different guy than he was last year for us. The young kid (OLB) Willie Jefferson that we’ve got out here, reminds me of Bryan a lot that we had last year. They’re going to be called on to play and play big for us. So you need to have a great—not only these days, but summer as well.”

(on if OLB Bryan Braman has a ways to go during the preseason to earn his trust) “I think that’s with everybody. All of the sudden he gets put in that role, if that’s where he starts off when it’s time to go play, then obviously it’s going to be up to him to hang on to it and prove he belongs there. He’s holding his own. He’s had a good seven practices.”

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