WRs Jacoby Ford and Darrius Heyward-Bey watch Head Coach Hue Jackson's press conference with the media. Photo by Tony Gonzales.
Q:Who is going to return punts?
Coach Jackson:Oh, I knew you were going to ask me that but here's the deal. I don't want to give up my strategy because, obviously, they are not giving up their strategy. So, here's the deal. Obviously, you guys know that we have three potential guys that can return punts with Nick Miller, Denarius Moore and Jacoby Ford. There are the three guys; one of them is going to return punts, but I'm not going to let them know that. I think you guys respect that because they're not telling everybody what they are doing for them, so I'm not going to tell them what we're doing. I think that is a fair way to be for us.
Q:So for kickoffs, we just assume it's going to be Jacoby Ford?
Coach Jackson:[Laughs] You just said it. Your assumption is pretty good, but I'm not giving them the upper hand. I'm not going to show my hand if they are not going to show their hand. If they show me there's, I'll give you mine.
Q:Chuck [Bresnahan] mentioned it helps to play the cornerback in nickel. Who is playing safety and who is playing cornerback on nickel?
Coach Jackson:Well, there are a couple guys that could be. It could be [Matt] Giordano, it could be Jerome Boyd, and it could be a couple of other guys back there. I think that it is based on the situation and you guys understand that. It is no different with what I hear about these wide receivers and I can start anybody I want, but it's all based on the personnel group that I decide to start with. I could put four receivers out there, I could put four, or I could be three out there. It all depends on how we decide to start the game and I don't do that until honestly Sunday. I normally put the openers together the night before the game.
Q:Do you like to script plays or do you just like to go?
Coach Jackson:I like to script plays, but there are some times when you get a feel and you just have to go. It all depends on the moment and how you feel at the time, but I am a person who likes to have the offense have a feel for exactly how we are going to start with which way we are going to go. I do want them to understand that it can change upon the situation because we may get a turnover and end up on the other team's 20, so that script changes as we go.
Q: Do you have a number of script plays?
Coach Jackson:Yes, I'm close to 30. Normally, those plays can get you through the first half and you get a chance to see what you want to see. Again, that is all subject to change based on the situation.
Q:It's a 16-game and long season so how important is it to get this first game Monday night?
Coach Jackson:Well, it's the first one you play. You have to get off to a great start. I think from game one to game 16 and earning a 17th, you have to go out to win the first game and that is what we plan on doing.
Q:With all the pieces you have on offense with Taiwan Jones and Jacoby Ford, do you have to guard against getting away from your core philosophy with getting the running game going?
Coach Jackson:Oh no doubt. Those guys are our core and there are so many different ways to attempt to get those guys the ball. I mean they have some special skills and we try to showcase those. We try to give those guys the opportunity to touch it because I think that if they touch it enough, they are going to make some plays. I think our offense is all about that; we don't have a name for it, but we just kind of play to our players. I put the pressure on the players to make the plays and that's the name of the game.
Q:Are you going to have a walk-through under the lights tomorrow?
Coach Jackson:We're here tomorrow. We'll probably get on the plane, get to Denver tomorrow, and kind of chill out.
Q:Will they walk through the stadium though?
Coach Jackson:Probably not tomorrow. I think they are tired of seeing me and I'm probably tired of seeing them. I want to back away for a moment and they want to back away from me. I enjoy this football team because they understand what they have to do, so we're excited to get on the plane and go play.
Q:What were you doing 10 years ago on 9/11?
Coach Jackson:Oh my gosh. That would probably be one of the most memorable times of my life other than the birth of my kids. I was with the Washington Redskins coaching with Marty Schottenheimer in a room with wide receivers coach Richard Mann. I was putting the blitzes up on the board because I was the running backs coach at the time and we used to always have a TV. Richard would work on one side of the board and I'd work on the other. We both kind of looked up at the TV to see smoke and we're like 'what is going on there?' Richard said that there was a plane that hit the World Trade Center and I was like you have to be kidding me. At the time, I thought he was joking, but then all of a sudden, the TV station said this was an emergency. They said that something was happening at Dulles Airport and we were 15 minutes from it, so I was there for it. We all got concerned because my kids were in school at the time and I wanted to know where my kids were. I'll never forget that because it was a horrible experience. To all of the families that have had to go through that, my heart goes out to them and I pray about it all the time. I think it was a tough situation for our country.
Q:Will Giordano play free and strong?
Coach Jackson:We're going to do what we need to. Obviously, we have different packages so I think he can play in any of the different packages we need him to play.