Coach Allen: Really nothing new as far as injuries are concerned; we held
Q: Were you scheduled to practice in shells today?
Coach Allen: No, we were going to go full pads today but we felt like the team’s been giving us everything they got and it was time for us to kind of take a little bit off of them.
Q: How’d that go over with the guys?
Coach Allen: I think it went over pretty good. The guys obviously appreciate it when you cut it back a little bit on them and you give them a chance to recover some. They have the day off tomorrow so they’ll have the full day off tomorrow to really recover.
Q: How do you spend the players’ day off?
Coach Allen: Working. We’ll spend a little bit of time in the morning getting a little rest for ourselves and getting our minds right, but we’ll spend most of our day talking about personnel, talking about the schedule with the upcoming games, different play-time scenarios. So there’s a lot of things behind the scenes that we’ll be doing on players’ day off.
Q: With all the injuries at running back it looks like
Coach Allen: I’ve been impressed with what Lonyae’s been able to do. He’s a different type of back than the other backs that we got; he’s a little bit more of a downhill, pounder-type guy. He doesn’t have quite the same explosiveness as those other guys but he’s been a consistent runner. What I’ve seen and what he’s done in the zone scheme is he’s understood what his reads are and he’s made the proper reads, gotten his pads downhill, and made some yards.
Q: Do you expect him to get quite a bit of work [in the first preseason game]?
Coach Allen: I would expect that he would be tired after Monday night’s game.
Q: You’ve also given
Coach Allen: It’s a little bit of both. Some of it is trying to put him back there and handing the ball off to him and see where he’s at and see how he fits in the scheme. And some of it is also out of a necessity with some of the running back injuries. Just making sure that we’ve got enough bodies we can put back there and hand the ball off to.
Q: With [Ron] Bartell essentially missing all of last year, what have you been looking for out of him?
Coach Allen: Early, especially in OTAs and mini-camp, we talked about this a lot, it’s knocking the rust off and getting back in the groove of playing football. Really it’s kind of the same in training camp, just like everybody else, I want to see him continue to get better every day. He’s made a couple of nice plays and done a couple of nice things in his first three days.
Q: How hard is it to get that rust off?
Coach Allen: It takes a little while. It’s not an easy game. It’s a tough game played by tough people so it takes a little bit of time to knock the rust off. Fortunately for us we’ve got a lot of time to get him ready for the opening Monday Night game.
Q: Looked like you were giving
Coach Allen: He’s been improving everyday and that’s the thing we look for. When guys step up and make some plays they earn the right to move up the depth chart some. Like I said before, nothing right now is set in concrete. When guys earn that right we will move him up and give him the opportunity and see what they do with it.
Q: [Philip] Wheeler really seemed to flash in coverage today. Is that something of his game that a lot of people know about that he’s really showing this camp?
Coach Allen: Well he’s never really been asked to do a lot of it. The system that he played in before there wasn’t a lot of that within the system so he’s an athletic player and we are trying to give him the ability to use his athleticism to hopefully make some plays for us, whether it be in the passing game, in coverage, or rush, or whether it be setting an edge on the run defense.
Q: What was Carson [Palmer] throwing that imaginary flag on the field for? Did you see that?
Coach Allen: He thought that he got held. It’s funny, the offense, they always think its pass interference and the defense never thinks it is. That’s just the way it is. We will look at it on tape and we will see who is right.
Q: When you signed him, you said you looked forward to Wheeler being able to rush the quarterback a little bit, something he did in Indianapolis. How has he been at that?
Coach Allen: I think he has been really good at it. He is athletic, he is slippery, he is tough for offensive guys to get their hands on. I think he has done a good job from a rush standpoint.
Q: How important was it to add a guy like Greg Knapp, to bring him in with Carson and these receivers? What do you think of the group of wide receivers that you have now compared to the ones you had in New Orleans?
Coach Allen: On the first question, I think it was extremely important to get a guy like Greg Knapp. He is a guy that I have worked with before, and I have a lot of respect for. You look at what he has done with Matt Schaub down there in Houston over there the last couple years and really helped him out. Then you look at what he has done from a running-game standpoint. He has done a nice job as an offensive coordinator from the run-game standpoint. So he was one of the guys that I was extremely interested in when I got this job and I tried to get him to be the offensive coordinator. I think he has a great working relationship with Carson and all the quarterbacks. He has been a real plus. What was the second question?
Q: In this West Coast system you are going to run these receivers…
Coach Allen: Oh, our receivers. This is probably the fastest group of receivers I have been around. They all have a little bit of something special that they can do and they have got a unique skill set. So I think it is going to be on us as coaches to devise ways to utilize our personnel and fit what we do to what our guys can do well. And I think the fact that they are not all the same, they are not cookie-cutter wide receivers. They all have a unique sill set, so I think that will help us.
Coach Allen: He still is making an impression. I think he has done a real good job. I am very pleased with Rod Streater. He is a big, athletic wide receiver. He gets in and out of his cuts well. But as with all the rookies, you still look up and he is making silly mistakes. We are going to stay on him and keep working with him. But if he’ll just continues to work on getting better every day, he is going to be fine.
Q: Last year you got a taste of the AFC West being defensive coordinator with the Denver Broncos and as hotly contested as the division was going down the stretch, what are your thoughts of all the rivalries in the division?
Coach Allen: I think it’s fun. This is a division with rivalries that have been around for a long time. So to be a part of it, I think, is something special and I am looking forward to competing from this side of the rivalry.
Q: When you see someone like Streater, were you surprised he wasn’t drafted?
Coach Allen: I don’t know. You never really know about the Draft. It’s not a perfect science. But he was a guy that we had on our board and he was a guy that as the Draft continued to go on that we were looking for where he was at. Unfortunately we weren’t able to draft him. But fortunately we hit free agency and we knew he wasn’t drafted and he was one of the primary guys that we were trying to get.
Q: It looked out there that [Matt] Leinart was having a very good day. I know that we don’t see all the intricacies but it seems like he has progressed and that this might have been one of the best days he has had in camp. Would you agree with that?
Coach Allen: Yeah. I will go back and look at the tape and really get a better feel for where he was at. I thought that overall he did a nice job and really I think he has had a pretty good camp. I have been pleased with Matt.
Q: Back to Goodson, how relieved were you yesterday the way things worked out?
Coach Allen: Extremely. We care about all of these guys. Nobody wants to see anybody get hurt especially with something as serious as a neck injury. The fact that everything came back fine was obviously very relieving to all of us.
Q: Do you think it’s going to be long-term? Is he going to need a few weeks?
Coach Allen: I don’t really know. I don’t anticipate that. But obviously we’re going to make sure he is fully healthy before we get him back out here.
Q: In looking at the film of the collision, was it just a freak thing, or was it a helmet-to-helmet thing?
Coach Allen: It was not helmet to helmet. It was a little bit of a freak deal. Mike kind of ducked a little bit. Philip kind of led with his shoulder, kind of lunged at him. But again, it’s things that happen in the game of football. It’s an unfortunate occurrence. Fortunately Mike is fine, and we move on from it.
Q: Do you think you will be holding Goodson out of this game as a precaution?
Coach Allen: I don’t know. We will see where he is at. If we had to play today, obviously he wouldn’t play.