Interim Head Coach Tony Sparano.Photo by Tony Gonzales
OL Kevin Boothe: "I think just his professional approach to everything – he's constantly looking for ways to improve and I feel as though I've improved a lot in the few months that I've been able to work with him. I think that's going to carry over to the team. tHere's no gray area. He tells you exactly how things are and how he expects them to be done. He's all about helping us improve. Whatever we need to improve and I think that the guys are embracing it, the guys that don't know him on a day-to-day basis but will get to know him in a short time, they realize that he's all about work and preparing us to do our job on Sundays."
DE LaMarr Woodley:"We all saw what he did out there in Miami. Watching him this year work with the o-line, he's definitely a coach that when he has something to say, he's going to say what he has to say. Going out there, he changed practice a little bit. His mindset is he's moving forward, that's just like everybody else on this team, it's moving forward. We're going out here and taking care of these next 12 games."
RB Maurice Jones-Drew:"When they hired him, I heard a lot of great things about him. Obviously talked to him a bunch, played with some guys that were in Miami with him, and he's a straight shooter, that's all. He's going to tell you how it is and we're going to work. I think that's something good for these young guys to understand as well. My second year, I found out what the business of the NFL was about when Byron Leftwich was cut Week One. It changed my whole mindset and it probably was one of the reasons I've been able to play so long at the position I've been playing at, is because it's a business. You always have to have that mindset and so that was one of Coach Sparano's things that he told us. This is a business; we're all renters here and you have to pay your dues and do the right thing all the time, and that's what we did today. Like I said since you were late, we came in, watched the tape of the four games, just cutups, and studied ourselves, and after that got out to practice and now we're onto San Diego. We put that all behind us and now we're on to San Diego."
DT Antonio Smith: "Some people you meet in this world, you never have to hear a word they say before you know what they're about, and he's just one of those type of people. You can just see it. You can feel it and you can see it. He just has that commanding presence."
DT Antonio Smith: "The moment he got up on the stage, he brought that commanding presence of what is going to be, what he expects, what he sees out of us, even in the bad. When he tells you the bad, he shoots it to you blood raw, there isn't any of that sugar coat. He shoots it to you blood raw and also with the good, he gives it to you just how he thinks, even how other coaches perceive it from other teams, because you know good coaches talk. They talk about how it was in the game when they played against you, what they looked for against you and different things like that. He knows what this team can do good, and I also think he knows what we've done bad. If you focus on all the bad you can do, they have this thing called the tank that you go in and you stop caring about winning or losing and you can just come to work every day. That isn't in my DNA and I don't think it's anybody on this team's DNA. He's just making sure that we don't have any of that on this team. All he wants us to think about is getting those smiles on our faces on Sunday."
DL C.J. Wilson: "It's been going well. I can definitely tell that he has a great system and a great plan for us. Day One he came and told us the plan. We dug ourselves into a hole and now it's time to climb this mountain and today went well. It was the first day of the new era and I feel like the guys are motivated and there are great expectations. It felt good."
QB Derek Carr: "Any time you go through change, you can handle it one of two ways. You can let it defeat you or you can embrace it. Like we've said, we've already talked about Coach [Dennis] Allen and now we're moving on. We've embraced Coach Sparano. We're excited. You walk out to practice and the team was excited and flying around. We played with great energy. There were still mistakes, as always with every practice around the nation. But, the energy and the effort was there. Now we're just embracing this challenge. We're excited to do it."