Head Coach Jack Del Rio
Opening Statement:“Alright, Fast Friday. Ready to travel. Had a good week. Know they’re a good team, they’re playing well and it’s at their place so we’re excited to travel well and conduct ourselves like professionals on a business trip. Questions?”
Q: What have you see out of Shalom Luani?
Coach Del Rio:“He’s got great instincts and is a natural play maker. He’s been chomping at the bit for an opportunity if Karl [Joseph] doesn’t end up being able to go, then he’s excited to get his turn.”
Q: Will you been able to fill in Joseph’s spot with Erik Harris and Keith McGill II?
Coach Del Rio:“Yes, exactly. We’ve got guys that are prepared and ready to go. Obviously, you’d like to have your starter there. That’s why he’s the starter. We’re next man up outfit. That’s how we’ll proceed with it. Shalom, obviously, is a young man that we’re excited about. He’s looking forward to getting a little more action than he’s had.”
Q: Did you see the video of Marshawn Lynch practicing at his old high school?**
Coach Del Rio: “I saw a couple of shots of the video. Yeah, I’m concentrated on Buffalo.”
Q: How has Sean Smith responded to filling in for injured guys despite having his snap count go down?
Coach Del Rio:“It’s never easy for a guy. He’s handling it professional and being prepared and being ready to help his team when he’s called on. We’re going to play the best combination of people that we think can help us win. I’d love for him to get it going and finish this year strong. Where he’s had some struggles, we felt the need to play some other guys.”
Q: Justin Ellis is pretty involved defensively in the snap count. Looks like he’s playing run defense well. Where do you think he’s made improvements?
Del Rio:“I think he’s maturing. He had a really good offseason. He came back in better shape than he has. His weight has not been an issue all year, it’s been zero of an issue. I think he has taken a step forward in terms of maturity and as a result, his play has taken a step forward in terms of his dependability and his performance on Sundays. It’s great to see your players develop and he’s developing. He’s playing better than he has and I think it’s a tribute to the dedication that he showed during the offseason preparing for this year.”
Q: What has Obi Melifonwu shown these past two weeks at practice?
Del Rio:“He’s shown that he needs some work. When a young guy, regardless of how talented they are, misses as much time as he has practicing, he’s going to be rusty. We’ve had a couple good weeks to work him in and get him some looks and prepare him. He’s physically ready to go, and mentally as far as game conditioning and stuff that will have to come. It’s good to see him running around. It’ll be good when we get him back and in the full.”
Q: Is special teams a place for a guy like him to get some time?
Del Rio:“Special teams, defense, whatever he’s called on. We obviously had a big role for him prior to his injury and we can’t just put that big role back on him right away. We’ll have to work him into it. That’s strategy kind of stuff, but we’ll be excited to get him back involved.