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Greg Olson Talks Training Camp


Q: When lose a guy as key as Jared [Veldheer] is do you say, 'Look we're still going to do what we do no matter what we have in there?"**

Coach Olson:No, we'll still look at it. Again, going into the season, the power scheme, the gap scheme, that we're doing, Jared was an important part of that. We didn't really get a real chance to – last week – evaluate that part of the game as much as we would like to. Again, we'll continue these last two preseason games, and more specifically Friday's game a little bit, to try and see if that is going to be something we'll continue to expand upon.

Q: Such a big part of that was Darren [McFadden]. What have you seen from Darren?

Coach Olson:Well, Darren's been great, to be honest with you. He's been great, and really the entire offense [has]. We haven't seen any players … Certainly they've felt the loss of Jared. He was a popular teammate on the offensive side of the ball, but they see the same thing. They understand the business. You go back to work and someone has to be challenged to step in and take that spot.

Q: With what you've seen from Terrelle [Pryor], do you see him having an expanded role, more so than you did originally when he first came here?

Coach Olson:We're still kind of tinkering with that toy. We did some things in the first game we were pleased with. We went into the second game and tried some other schemes that we looked at them and say maybe they weren't as successful as they were in that first week, but again we changed up, and we'll continue to change up this week and do some different things with him this week, so that we have an entire package. Each week we're trying to just expose a little bit with Terrelle, add a little bit to the initial package we had in for him.

Q: The issues on the offensive line, injuries and otherwise, does that in any way change when you decide to use Terrelle Pryor?

Coach Olson:I think it changes how we're going to use everybody, to be honest with you. It'll impact how I use Darren McFadden, it will impact how I use Marcel Reece. You don't lose a player like that and think you're not going to have to change some things or do some things differently.

Q: At the tight end position, what is it looking like right now?

Coach Olson:We were starting to clear that up. We felt like David Ausberry certainly was having a good football camp and now again, with Richard Gordon and Jeron Mastrud, they're in the battle for the number one spot. We like the emergence of our young tight ends. It was good to get Nick Kasa back, but we like the young tight ends right now and how they've come along, but really we'll take a good hard look at Richard Gordon and Jeron Mastrud this week.

Q: Denarius Moore has been, almost since college where he had a couple of 200-yard games but didn't get to 1,000 yards. And with the Raiders, he has games where he's spectacular and a few games where he kind of goes away. What is it going to take for him to become a consistent player?

Coach Olson:Well a lot of it is going to be on Denarius. To me, it's that whole character issue, becoming a self-starter, becoming a self-motivated person, and a lot of that comes with maturity. I think he'd be the first guy to say we're constantly on top of him and it's hard to give someone like that any base, so we just coach him up, but I think he's becoming a more mature player and more mature person, so I think that's going to help as well. A lot of players will tell you, if they're fortunate enough to stay in the league for any length of time, they will all tell you, 'Boy, I wish I had been more mature as a younger player.' And I think that maturity will happen for Denarius.

Q: That being said, is he or anybody else distinguishing themselves in your mind as the number one guy?

Coach Olson:I still think there's a battle going on there. I think it may be by committee somewhat at the wide receiver position. There hasn't been any one guy that's stepped up above everybody else, not that this point. Again, we like the emergence of Brice Butler, we like some things Denarius has done. We haven't had a chance really to see Jacoby [Ford] and Juron Criner, two guys we really haven't had a chance to see much of. We still have some guys. Obviously, Rod Streater has been the most consistent for us thus far, but we have to get some guys healthy and we have to get a chance to try and evaluate them.

Q: Has [Matt] Flynn been about what you've expected going in? Is he giving you pretty much what you thought you would see?

Coach Olson:Yeah. He's been steady throughout this training camp and that's Matt Flynn. That's what he's been about and what we've expected.

Q: Coach, you talk about maturity, has Streater demonstrated some of that maturity?

Coach Olson:Yeah. I think when you're talking about self-starters and self-motivated people, Rod Streater is that guy in that room to me. He's the leader in that room just based upon his work ethic, his preparation and the way he approaches the game. I'm happy with Rod Streater.

Q: How big was that drive at the end of the first half for Flynn and for the offense against the Saints?

Coach Olson:It was real big. Certainly we had the three-and-outs we had and then if you remember, we started that drive on third-and-15. Thankfully we converted that third-and-15 on a heads up play by Brice Butler and by Matt Flynn going on a hard count and getting them to jump offside, and then to get the first down and get into a rhythm and finish the drive was big for certainly the confidence of the quarterback and the offense as a whole.

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