Take a look at top quotes from Head Coach Brandon Staley and safety Derwin James, Jr. before Wednesday's practice:
Head Coach Brandon Staley
On Broncos OLB Bradley Chubb and preparing G/T Jamaree Salyer for the matchup:
"He has coaches that are going to be breaking those guys down. Every week, I'm trying to insert myself where I can with players and specific matchups. I love doing it on the offensive side of the ball, especially because I'm so familiar with a lot of the defensive players in the league and structures and stuff like that. I really love that part about being a head coach. Jamaree [Salyer] is one of those students of the game. I think that's why you've seen him play well. Then, he has really good coaches. [Offensive Line Coach] Brendan Nugent and [Assistant Offensive Line Coach] Shaun Sarrett, those guys, to me, are as good as any tandem in the league. Then, [Offensive Coordinator] Joe Lombardi, obviously, leading the way. The other good thing for Jamaree is that he also has another coach, [Rashawn Slater], who is helping him out, too — Corey [Linsley] and Trey [Pipkins III], who have played a lot. What we try to do with guys like him, that are new to the NFL, is use everyone's experience to help them out."
On the offensive line's performance thus far this season:
"It's just been a team effort. It starts with that premise, that it takes a team effort to play like that. It's not just the O-line, it's their coaches, it's the skill players around them, it's the protection plan, it's the run game plan. Things take time, and I think that for us, up front, early in the season, it's just taken some time for those guys to play together, to get into rhythm together, but I think that you've seen, over the last couple of weeks, us play really quality football on the road. That's also a factor, when you have a group that can go on the road and play like that. We're excited. We have to keep improving."
On the EDGE production on the opposite side of OLB Khalil Mack:
"I think that those guys are all combining to try and pick up the slack, and, certainly, to get the production. I think that they all can give us something that is going to give us an edge. I think that when you take a look at Khalil [Mack], we don't want him to have to shoulder more and play more. Then, as the season goes on, then he wears down. We want to use those four guys to really play, and that's what we're doing. In terms of rushing the passer, in the Houston game, I thought that all four of those guys were outstanding. Last week, in terms of just pass-rush production, they didn't get to rush a lot in that game It was just a bloody run game and they didn't get very many opportunities. That's what happens in a game like that, when you don't get the lead early — and then, the run game, for them, is working — you don't get very many chances to rush. I think that that group last week just had to play a tough, rugged game on the edge. Hopefully, we're going to earn more opportunities to rush early in the game."
On the Broncos:
"I see a team that easily could be 5-0, real easily could be 5-0. They've played a good schedule early on. That's what I see. I see an offense that has a lot of weapons. When you start with their quarterback [Broncos QB Russell Wilson], he's a guy that I've had to face several times and a guy that has as good of a resumé as you can find. He has so much experience. He has seen and played in so many big games. He's going through that transition right now, too, of going to a new team, but he's still the same player, in terms of being dangerous every snap. He's a guy that is as tough of a cover as you're going to go against. At receiver, they have an outstanding receiving corps; [Broncos WR Courtland] Sutton, [Broncos WR Jerry] Jeudy, [Broncos WR KJ] Hamler. Those guys are really tough to cover. It's really unfortunate that they lost the back, [Broncos RB] Javonte Williams, because he's an outstanding player, but [Broncos RB] Melvin Gordon is a lead back in this league, always has been. Then, on the offensive line, they've had to make some adjustments, but they have a good line. What you see through these first five games is they move the ball and that they're very dangerous because they have a lot of pieces that can get you explosions, that can score the ball for you. They have our full attention, that's for sure."
On 'why scoring is down across the league through the first five weeks':
"It could just be injuries early in the season, where I think people are working through a lot of different things. It seems to be that way. Maybe it's just because there's so much more media coverage, but it just seems like there are a lot of people in transition with their team. I think that when you factor in the preseason, people are playing less than the preseason, and then you get at the beginning of the season, and then you have some transition on your team. It can be challenging. That's why I talk about the discovery phase. I don't use that as a coaching phrase to make it feel better, I think it's descriptive of what is actually happening. I think that's what you're seeing. Then, once these groups join up, and they get their, quote-unquote, identity, then you'll see it get back up because the fact is that the players are good enough. Sometimes you just have to play together more, and then the scoring will move up."
On the offense's red zone production:
"Just start with last week; we had the two penalties that set us back. I thought that we were off to a good start down there. Then, you can see what those penalties do, they get you into third-and-long down there. I thought we had a lot of good stuff up in the plan. I love the red-area touchdown that Joshua [Kelley] had running the football. Then, the screen to Austin [Ekeler]. You have to make sure that down there in the red area, that you make them defend the width of the field. That's what we're trying to do. We're trying to activate all of those play calls, all of those personnel groupings that can get the matchups down there. Last week, it certainly wasn't good enough for us. We were two-for-five down there. If you score down there, you can see what it does to the game. As you saw last week on defense, when you can get a red zone takeaway, what that does for your team. It's an area that field that we practice a lot. At the beginning of the season, you're still trying to figure it out. I know that last year, if you go back to last year, we got off to a slower start in red zone, and then we really heated up because you figure it out — you know who you have, and then you go attack. I know that we have the chops to be as good as anybody in pro football, offensively. I thought that those penalties really hurt us last week."
Safety Derwin James Jr.
On playing in primetime:
"Anytime we get to play this game, it's always exciting, especially when the whole world is watching. I can't wait until Monday night, it's going to be very exciting."
On the Broncos offense and them not being 'what people they thought they were going to be' so far:
"I would say you can look at it one of two ways. I look at it as, they've been driving the field on a lot of teams. Whether it's fumbling the ball or throwing an interception, they've had a lot of chances in the red zone, I've seen that on film. They could easily be sitting at a different record, a few plays here and there. We just have to come out ready to play because [Russell Wilson] at the end of the day can still play at a high level. We all know that."
On Broncos WR Courtland Sutton:
"Physical receiver. He's their engine over there when it comes to their receiver group. Big body on the outside, he's got a lot size, can catch the nine ball, can catch slants, so we got to be ready for him."
On Broncos RB Melvin Gordon:
"We know Melvin. Melvin was my teammate [in] 2018. We had a lot of success here. I know Melvin, he's going to come out here, run hard. He might have had a couple fumbles here and there but like you say, when you hear a lot of people saying how bad you've been playing, you're going to want to get that fixed so I know he'll be ready to play."
Bolt Up for 2022!
Secure your 2022 Season Ticket Memberships today! Click here to learn more.