They Said What?
AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
Warpath Insiders
Posted Jul 20, 2008


See what Zorn, Portis, Campbell, Washington and Griffin had to say after Day 1 of Training Camp.

Head Coach Jim Zorn

On the first day of training camp producing two injuries:

“They were both non-contact injuries.  They are hard to predict, but you have to deal with it.  There is nothing that we can discuss to say ‘what if.’  Alex Buzbee was setting for a punt block and as he was back pedaling and he planted, his achilles ruptured on his right leg.  Fred Smoot got a sprained ankle.  I love sprained ankles now because we know it is a few-day recover.  With Phillip gone and now Buzbee gone, there is a hole there.  Phillip has created a hole there.  Demetric Evans has to fill in.  We are really glad we have Erasmus James.  Fortunately we have very mature coaches with experience.  With Greg Blatche, we have already had several discussions on how to make this work.  As we go we have the next practice and need to deal with it.”

On the status of Erasmus James:

“We think Erasmus is going to be able to practice with reps in our team drills in August.  As he works in and we build him up, he might not be ready to even get into the game until the last couple of preseason games.  That is if his knee responds well and his shoulder responds well.”

On the role of Demetric Evans:

“He just needs to fill a void and he will.  He is a heck of a player.  The other guys will move in and move up.  He has been playing behind Phillip Daniels, so I haven’t really been able to hone in on him.  He has some size to him and he is going to have to be a good run stopper.  He is going to have to continue to learn to pass rush and give us some stability there.  I expect to slot him in and go.  It is what we have to do.”

On how Phillip Daniels is doing:

“The hard part is he was so ready.  He did everything that he could possibly do to not only have a great training camp, but an excellent football season.  Now he has a new challenge before him and of course we have a new challenge before us.  He feels miserable.  He deeply cares about the players on this team and knows that it is a big void.  He knows that he was a key leader on this team.  He is going to be around and he is going to try to do what he can to continue to be a part of it even though he doesn’t get to play on the field.  I think he has to work through a lot of the emotional issues.  He senses a real loss for him, for us, and even his family.  It is a hard thing to deal with.”

On if the team will look elsewhere to fill the void caused by the injuries:

“I don’t know if we will call teams or teams will approach us now because everybody will know.  This will happen in the next few days if it does.  If it doesn’t then we will stick with what we have.”

Running Back Clinton Portis

On the first day of training camp:

“It was good.  The season is right around the corner.  It’s different from mini-camp and OTAs because now you are actually getting ready for somebody.  Right now we are a month out from playing football and it really counts.” 

On what he thinks of Head Coach Jim Zorn so far:

“I think he is going to be a fun coach.  I think a lot of the players love the ideas that he brings.  I really think he is going to give more players the opportunity to use their talents.  You are going to see a lot of people touch the ball, such as Malcolm Kelly, Devin Thomas, Chris Cooley, [Fred] Davis, and myself.  Those guys are working hard.  They look good and it is exciting to see how the ball gets spread around.  You walk up to the line and it is not just me, Santana [Moss], and Chris [Cooley] getting the ball anymore.  The ball can go anywhere and that is exciting.”

On the impact that bringing in receivers is going to have on the running game:

“Its going to be great for the passing game and when you get a passing game it is going to open up the running game.  They are going to counteract.  The running game is going to have to be used to open up the passing game and the passing game is going to need to be used to get people out of the box for the run.  I think it is a great combination.  Guys are looking forward to it and we are excited about it.  I know I am looking forward to it.  It feels good to see six people in the box and everybody else spread out wide.”

On his role on in this offense:

“People are used to seeing me as a break-away back and they want to see me break [away for big runs].  My role is different.  I wanted to break away for big runs, but at the same time there were few opportunities.  I didn’t take advantage of all the opportunities, so I can’t say I was consistent.  Now I can say there are more opportunities.  There is more freedom.”

On where he thinks he is in terms of reaching his prime:

“I think I am having fun.  Reaching a peak or not, I think there is a lot left in me because I am getting this opportunity and this freedom again.  Over the past five years I have been playing tough man football and probably knocked six years off my career.  I planned to play for nineteen years, but now I am down to thirteen.  So I have six left.”

On the loss of DE Phillip Daniels:

“It is tough.  Phillip Daniels was one of our best defenders and a leader on this team.  He went down the first play after all the hard work he put in during the offseason and knowing he was going to be a vital part to this team’s success.  All of a sudden you lose him on the first play and it is hard.  As a team, guys need to focus and come together so we can find a way to win.  We need to keep Phillip around us and keep him motivating us.  Then we can go out and win for Phillip.”

On training camp without the late Sean Taylor:

“Sean Taylor is always here with us and always in the back of our minds.  Every time you step into the locker room you see the memorial for Sean.  It is hard without him.  I was looking in the backfield today and saw Stuart Schweigert and I thought, ‘I wish Sean was here to share this.’  He is that one piece.  You always feel that you are a piece of the puzzle away and if you could go back and fill Sean into this team it’s a piece of the puzzle.  To me it would feel like we are there and could be the Super Bowl champs.  Not having that as a team means that guys need to come together as a team and work.  You are never going to replace him, but guys need to continue to try.” 

Redskins Quarterback Jason Campbell

On practicing under Coach Zorn:

“Coach Zorn is a good coach.  He has a lot of drills for us, and they are exciting because they prepare you well for games.  Everything has become second nature to us, but we have not gotten to Coach Zorn’s favorite drill yet, dodgeball.”

On the loss of Phillip Daniels:

“He is one of our proven veterans on the defensive line that makes plays.  You hate to see him get injured because he has such a great attitude and mindset about being on the team, and helping us when games.  He works tremendously hard, and you can see how fit he is.  We have to pick him up as a team, and show him that we still love him, still care for him, and let him know that he is still part of the team.”

Redskins Linebacker Marcus Washington

On the loss of Phillip Daniels:

“It is tough and really unfortunate.  We know how hard he worked in the offseason, and how much a part of this team he is, especially on the defensive side.  But I know Phillip, and this will not keep him down.”

On how difficult it is to know that a player’s entire season is lost due to an injury on the first day:

“It is tough because people don’t know how much time players put into the offseason.  You put the time in and make a lot of sacrifices, which is why it is so disappointing when you don’t get a chance to make it to the regular season.” 

On the advantages of having so many returning starters on defense:

“It is good because guys know what to expect from each other, and we have a lot of confidence in each other.  We had a pretty good run last year as a defense, and hopefully we can continue to get better this year.”

Redskins Defensive Lineman Cornelius Griffin

On how difficult it will be to replace Phillip Daniels:

“You can’t replace a leader and a veteran that knows the game, knows how to work, and knows how to be accountable.  But this gives someone an opportunity to step up.”



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DE Alex Buzbee (profile)
QB Jason Campbell (profile)
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DE Demetric Evans (profile)
DT Cornelius Griffin (profile)
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