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News

Coach Allen Wednesday

Posted Oct 10, 2012

Head Coach Dennis Allen spoke with the media following Wednesday's practice.

On Tony Gonzalez: “He looks good. He is still moving good. He still understands how to run a route and get himself open and catches everything that’s anywhere close to him. So he is playing at an extremely high level.”

On Atlanta’s offense: “It is tough to defend. You have got to pick your poison at times. They are very explosive on the outside with their receivers. Obviously Tony still works the middle of the field extremely well. Like I said, he knows how to get open and he catches everything and then if you play for the pass too much they have still got a good running game. So they are obviously a talented offensive football team and they present a huge challenge for us.”

On playing in the Georgia Dome: “I think it’s the team that plays there. They are a good football team. They play with energy, they play with passion, and they enjoy playing the game. They create an up-tempo situation both offensively and defensively and when they play that way it keeps the crowd into it and keeps the crowd excited. They have got a good home field advantage and they have had it that way for a while. It will be a tough place to play.”

On his coaching experience in Atlanta: “It was good. I had a chance to work with Dan Reeves my first two years there and then Jim Mora came in and had an opportunity to work with him there. I have got fond memories of my time there in Atlanta and I understand what that organization is about and I understand what that team is about. They have got the right formula for winning.”

On how [General Manager Thomas] Dimitroff and [Head Coach Mike] Smith work together: “They obviously work together very well. They have got the right formula for winning football games. They understand how to win football games and they understand their personnel and what they are looking for. In that mode, that’s a team that we, in some respects, try to emulate.”

On Atlanta’s issues stopping the run: “I think they are an extremely fast defense. They are not an overly big defense. They run hard to the ball and so every now and then they might over pursue a little bit but they play the pass extremely well. They play a lot of split safety defense to try to eliminate the balls being thrown down the field. So people are trying to attack them in the running game when they play all the split safety defense.”

On QB Matt Ryan: “I got a chance to watch him for a long time since he first came into this league and every year he has gotten better and better. You can obviously see the mental aspect that has gotten better. He understands the game of football and he knows where to go with the football. They put him in the no huddle situation and he knows what plays to get to. I think mentally is where he has really improved a lot as the years have gone on.”

On if Raiders have made changes to running game: “You can’t throw everything out and just start over in the middle of the year. So yeah, there have been a few tweaks, a few emphasis points, but nothing like a drastic change, other than we have to execute better.”

On if there has been progress: “I have. We’ll see what it looks like when we go out and play Sunday.”

On WR Darrius Heyward-Bey: “I would fully anticipate Heyward-Bey being ready to go on Sunday.”

On if the offensive scheme changes when playing in a dome and on turf: “I think what you have to understand is the team that we are playing obviously on that turf, in that dome, is a different team. They play extremely fast in that environment. We have got to be prepared for that and we have to be able to match their intensity.”

On the team’s confidence: “I think that we have got confidence and I think that we have got to have confidence to go in there. When you play in the National Football League you better have confidence to go out there and play because if you don’t it could become a long day. What we have done schematically, we have tried to put our guys in the best position that we feel like they have got a chance to be successful. They are going to make their plays. What we have to be able to do is we can’t get discouraged and we have got to continue to compete all the way up until the end. We were able to do that one game this year and we will see what we are able to do this week.”

On the Falcons key to success: “It’s no doubt that they play extremely fast on defense. That is part of how they are able to get so many takeaways because they play extremely fast and they are always flying around the ball. When you are flying around like that you make plays. They do an outstanding job of that.”