Head Coach Hue Jackson. Photo by Tony Gonzales
Coach Jackson: The only thing that's different today from the medical standpoint is [Matt] Giordano practiced today. Everything else is the same as yesterday, so there's not much else to report. Other than that, the guys were enthusiastic – had two really good days I think of focused practice. Obviously, getting the quarterback up to speed with his teammates. We've still got some work to do in that area but I think each day has gotten better and better and better. I think the team is responding, I think they're working, I think they know what we need to do. They're going to get away from here – some guys will for a few days, refresh their minds but not get too far away from football. But like I told the guys; I mean yeah, you've got to take a day or two and let your body heal and all those good things. But, you've got to be thinking about what we've got to do when we get back which our focus is Denver and getting ready for the Denver Broncos.
Q: Did you give Carson [Palmer] specific stuff before he leaves; before you guys part ways today?
Coach Jackson: Oh yeah, we will. Obviously, the two days of practice like I said has been a really good two days for him so he'll build off of what we've done over the last two days. Obviously, we haven't truly gotten into game planning for Denver yet but some things we are doing will just carry forward as we move into next week.
Q: Do you have anything specific that you impart on them before they leave? Like, 'Don't be running off to Cancun?'
Coach Jackson: Absolutely [laughs]. Cancun, huh? No, but what I told them is what I think is most important is – one, is that you remember you represent this organization and this team and don't do anything stupid that would cause you not to be a member of this football team. That's first and foremost. Number two is that you make sure you spend time with loved ones – family, friends, people that are important because this is the one time you get the bye during the year. Number three – really think through what your goals are individually and as this football team. We have some lofty goals that we're right in the thick of to obtain and we've got to work at it. Everything you do from here on in and have since we started the season – everything gets counted, but the pressure of where we are is going to grow because every game is going to be compact and it's going to impact our seeding, our standings and what we're trying to accomplish.
Q: You said you were going to obviously stick around. What are the next four days going to be like for you?
Coach Jackson: Working on Denver. That's what I'll do every day. I'm going to do something about Denver every day and just about this football team. Again it's scheduling, it's making sure when we come back – we're almost at the midway point of the season so some areas you've got to cut back on, so your team isn't as tired and so you can finish the season strong. So, I'll get with my assistant Tommy Jones and we'll come up with a little different schedule. We won't change times, but we may cut back in some areas so that we keep a team that's fresh and ready to play.
Q: It's a short week after Denver. Do you do any work at all this weekend on San Diego?
Coach Jackson: Maybe a little but I guess my number one focus is obviously Denver. I can't be too far down the road worrying about San Diego. That's going to take care of itself, but my focus is definitely on Denver and what we need to do to win this game.
Q: Any help with the guys that you're working out or have they been added to the team down here?
Coach Jackson: No, nobody has been added to the team. Again, I'm just trying to again find a way to improve the team here and there. Legs – we need some with healthier legs just for practice purposes and whatever that is. But we've got a couple of guys in today, we're just going to keep taking a look at people and see where they are.
Q: With the personnel along those lines, can you work out anybody over the next couple of days?
Coach Jackson: Me personally?
Coach Jackson: No, the coaches? When you say other people coming from the outside in? Yeah, you can do that and I think this is the last day we can do that. Honestly, I think this is the last day you can work out anybody. But I think obviously, we've got a couple of guys in today. That's nothing major, but what we're going to do like I said is continue to look and see if we can find somebody that can help us be a little bit better in some areas.
Q: Was Chaz [Schilens] not dressing – was that health or was that something else?
Coach Jackson: No, Chaz had a groin. I know somebody told me he said, 'I'm fine.' I guess he's not fine; he hasn't been doing too much. He has a little groin and again, I'm going to take care of those guys. I'm going to do everything I can to make sure that it's not something that lingers. Sometimes when he gets an injury, it lingers for awhile and we don't want that. I wanted to make sure that he gets a chance to get back healthy so that he can come out here and compete. He's a very important member of this football team, so we've got to get him healthy and get him back out here.
Q: I know your overlap wasn't much, but JaMarcus Russell talked with Sports Illustrated and had some things to say about the Raiders organization that he had sleep apnea and these other problems that caused him to have trouble. Were you involved in the decision for him to be released?
Coach Jackson: I was involved in knowing what was going on. I mean obviously, Coach Davis made the ultimate decision there. When that was all said and done, it was done. We wish JaMarcus well and want him to do what he needs to do. I knew of it when I got here; he told me about his sleep apnea and some of the things he had gone through, and I understand that and respect that. But, I don't think that's the reason why he's not here. I think it was several other factors and those things I don't think we really need to get into. I think JaMarcus is a good young man. Hopefully, he'll get another opportunity to play but my time with JaMarcus was one of watching him grow. I thought he got better, but was he as good as we needed him to be at that time? I mean obviously not because we made the decision to move forward but I wish him nothing but the best. I think he's a good, young man and hopefully he'll get another chance in this league.
Q: I saw Jason [Campbell] out here today. Is he going to be involved in the quarterback room and all that?
Coach Jackson: He has been. Oh no, he has been. He's been to meetings, he's been involved. I've seen all these reports and all these other things that get said. I think you guys know how I feel about Jason, what I think about Jason. Jason's a huge reason why this team was 4-2 and I wish nothing but the best for Jason. I know everything that gets said – I don't subscribe to that, as I told you guys before. We'll see where he is when he's healthy. Obviously, he's a ways away from being healthy. He needs to get himself back to where he was and that's going to take some time and nobody knows how long that's going to take. It could take the rest of the season, it could be five weeks – nobody knows so we'll conduct business that way.
Q: What happens to Campbell if he comes back healthy and there's a month left? Does he have the option to be the number one guy?
Coach Jackson: I'll tell you that when we get there. I can't answer that right now because it's not happening, so that's all speculation. So, I'm not going to speculate on anything until I have to make that kind of decision and that's not one that needs to be made now.
Q: Is Darren [McFadden] sticking around this week rehabbing at all?
Coach Jackson: Oh I think he will. Yeah, I think – Darren will do anything he needs to do to be healthy. As you guys know, Darren likes to play and obviously that mid-foot injury is something that we've got to make sure we monitor and monitor the right way and make sure that he's healthy. But that's – again, we'll go day to day with that and see where he is.
Q: People are split on Tebow as far as being an NFL quarterback. What do you see out of him? Do you think he's got a chance to be the starting quarterback for a long time?
Coach Jackson: Tim Tebow?
Coach Jackson: I mean the guy won last week. They inserted him in as the starting quarterback and he went and found a way to win. So, the guy – he's a winner. I think a lot of other things get overblown in this league about everything else – how you throw it, what you look like, this, that and the other. I think if a guy can win games because that's what this is truly all about is winning and that's what he's done. So, I don't know how long he can do it over a period of time. I just know that hopefully next week, he doesn't do it. That's all I care about. Good luck to him the rest of the way; just make sure next week, he doesn't play as well so that's where I am.