Following are excerpts from players after the first two-a-day practice of the 2006 season.
Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(on training camp so far) "I thought yesterday afternoon we got a little sloppy, but I liked the way we battled today and bounced back. That's what training camp is about. You're going to have good practices, bad practices, but the key is that they are all work. I liked the way we practiced today."
(on DE Mario Williams) "You are asking a lot of a kid, right away. But that is the role he is in, and everybody knows that. But I like the way he is fitting in with the group. I like the way he's making other people around him better. That's the key; just to do his job and make people around him better."
(on Mario Williams' strength) "He has a little push to him. If you're a tight end and you have to stare at him all day, that's a long day. He's doing a fine job and hopefully he can get better."
(on LB Sam Cowart) "We will practice him in the morning. He missed a lot of time in the off season, so we'll work him in the mornings. He's a veteran guy, and he knows what he's doing. We want to make sure we bring him along physically in the right way. When he's not practicing in the afternoons, we're working DeMeco Ryans at middle linebacker. So it's a process and we are going to continue to do it that way and see how it plays out."
(on the importance of Cowart to the defense) "He's very important, that's why he was brought here. He knows (DC) Richard's (Smith) defense. He's been doing it a very long time. You have to have somebody in the middle that can tell everybody what to do and what's going on. That's his role, that's why he's here, and now we have to get him healthy to do that."
(on CB Demarcus Faggins) "Yesterday, he went up to make an interception, and when he jumped, he fractured his foot. It's called a Jones' fracture. There are various ways people have dealt with that. They put them in a boot for a period of time and sometime after the boot they go in and put a screw in. What was decided, is the best thing to do, is put the screw in right now. We will get in done with in the next 48 hours. He will start his rehab. The best scenario is that he will be back in six to eight weeks. And if you know that kid, there is a pretty good chance he will do that. So we understand our situation, we are looking at some veteran corners out there. We started late last night, (GM) Rick's (Smith) been working on that. So we understand our situation, so we have to step up and get Petey back as quick as we can."
(on CB Phillip Buchanon) "I have a lot of confidence in Phillip. I know how important this year is to him. I've had a couple of good visits with him this off-season. He's at a point in his career where it's time to step up and play like that first rounder and that player that was picked. He can do that. He can help us on special teams as a punt returner. If I'm Phillip, I'm sitting here staring at this and saying, 'hey, its time for me to shine in this league.' I told him in front of the team last night and said, 'we are all looking at him, it's time to go.'"
(on Buchanon's response) "He's fine. He's been practicing well this morning. He's been practicing well all off-season, but he understands. He understands what's going on. Every player is one play away from being a starter vand it's his turn."
(on CB Dunta Robinson 's injury) "Dunta twisted his ankle, but he's fine. It was precautionary; we pulled him out the last half hour."
(on C Mike Flanagan) "You're going to see a group of guys sitting. You'll see some guys on offense. You'll see Flanagan take some time, you'll see (Eric) Moulds take a practice and you'll see (T Zach) Weigert take some time. There may be some spot guys along the way that do the same. You're going to see (LB) Sam Cowart work once-a-day, you're going to see (DE/DT Anthony) Weaver going once-a-day at times. I think it does a couple of things. I think it helps those guys with their bodies. They're sitting for a reason, either for injury or age. What it does is when those guys are missing a practice, it allows another guy to step in and say 'hey, I can play'."
(on WR Andre Johnson being a leader) "I don't want to put too much pressure on the kid. His practice this morning was impressive. The way he works is special. I told him in front of the guys this morning 'if you work like that, son, the sky is the limit'. I'm very proud of him and I want him to keep it going."
(on RB Antowain Smith) "Antowain (Smith) has been on a winner. He's been with
(Patriots) and won the big game. If you look back on his career, he's been a consistent four plus yards-per-carry runner. Our zone scheme fits him and he's in tremendous condition for a guy who's been in the league this long. He's going to be right there with (RB) Domanick (Davis)."
** Post-afternoon practice quotes
Head Coach Gary Kubiak**
(on today's practices) "I like the way we worked as a football team today. We got better. We were all business from the time we woke up this morning to this afternoon. You're going to have rough spots in camp, but the key is they can't linger. I liked the way we worked through things today. We had to give some guys a break today and things kept going, and that's important because that's what has to happen. If somebody is missing, you have to keep rolling."
(on CB Phillip Buchanon moving up in the rotation) "He had a good day today. I know he had a great morning. Of course we had him watch some film this afternoon, but I know this morning we were all impressed with the way he worked. He's doing special teams too. Phillip has a full load right now, and he's very important to our football team."
(on CB Dunta Robinson's ankle injury) "You know what, he rolled his ankle a little bit yesterday and then this morning he went out and it started to twinge on him. We said 'Hey, let's give him a break.' It's just a precaution, but he's fine, he'll be ok."
CB Phillip Buchanan
(on his confidence heading into training camp) "Confidence can be predicated on the environment. If you're in a negative environment and things are going bad, of course certain players' confidence is going to go down, but if you're in a positive environment, that helps players and guys all around you."
(on his play last season) "Last season was one of the worst seasons for me playing in the situation that I was in. Unfortunately it happened, but it's part of life. Some days you have good days, some days you have bad days. Some days you have worse days, some days you have great days. It also depends on the environment. If you're in a positive environment, then good things can happen."
(on a new opportunity now that CB Demarcus Faggins is injured) "I've been playing when guys get hurt, stuff happens. You just have to look at it as an opportunity for you to go out and do what you have to do. I went into this season wanting to be the best from the get go. That's basically how I look at it. My goals are to be the best."
CB Dunta Robinson
(on his ankle injury) "I was covering (WR) Andre (Johnson) on an in-route. I turned, and we both went to the ground. I stood up and it felt funny. I tried to run it off, but I couldn't really put any pressure on it. But it's apart of the game. I know I'll be back."
(on CB Demarcus Faggins' injury) "It hurts the depth. I hate seeing back-ups not expecting to come in and have to play two's and three's. I kind of feel bad because you want to get out there and help those guys and make everything right. Injuries come with this game, and you have to deal with it."