Offensive Coordinator Ben McAdoo
November 27, 2015
Q: Do you think Hakeem Nicks is active Sunday? I guess I should start by asking, has he made enough strides in learning your offense?
A: Heís definitely made some progress. Heís got some work on our stuff and in the look team. It looks like heís in good shape, heís catching the ball well, and itís coming along nicely.
Q: What do you view him bringing to the table for you guys?
A: Heís a big, veteran target, has a lot of experience, has made some plays in stretch runs before. Itís good to have him here.
Q: Where do you stand with your offensive line at this point with the possible shuffling of guys, and how confident are you?
A: Very confident, yeah, very confident. We had a good week this week. Dallas (Reynolds) came in, we havenít missed a beat so far up front. He does a nice job directing traffic for us. Weíll need a big week from those guys this week, Washington does a nice job up front creating some havoc.
Q: You mentioned that Hakeem has made plays in a stretch run before. Is that something you felt as an offense you needed to add? A lot of guys havenít had this experience with a playoff push.
A: I think Coach said it best when he said he was the best guy out there, and weíre fortunate that he was out there. He came in and heís doing a nice job. Heís working at it, putting in some extra time learning it, spending some time with Sean (Ryan) and Ryan Roeder, putting the time in after practice and in the evenings. Heís had a nice week.
Q: Obviously you talked a couple weeks ago about Eli and Odell and with as many targets as Odell is getting, you want to increase the percentage of completions there. Iím just curious, when you look at Odell, obviously thereís a ceiling at some point and weíre not seeing it. What do you need to see from him to get better and the idea of getting better?
A: Well, heís done it this week. When you practice, you make mistakes and thatís the cycle. You practice, you make mistakes, you fix the mistakes, and you have a chance to execute and move on and learn from there. Heís done it a couple times this week in practice and thatís the evolution of a young player. When youíre a young player, you have to go out, you have to practice, you have to make those mistakes in practice, fix them later in the week in practice, and execute in the game. Not just him, thatís all young players, and all players, really. Thatís just the evolution of it. Heís a young player whoís been productive and has a chance. Heís working at being a pro and thatís part of it.
Q: You guys have been self-scouting, self-evaluating during the bye week. right? When you looked at the running game what do you see and what do you think needs to get better there?
A: We saw some concepts that we do better than others--that doesnít mean you get away from things, that means you work at them to improve. You see what individual players, what they do best, and you try to help them where they need help the most. In the run game, we were winning the down at a fairly decent clip. We need to eliminate the zero and negative yardage runs that hurt you. The other thing we do is when we get a chance to have a one-on-one, we need to break an arm tackle and take it to the house, thatís something we havenít done.
Q: What did you see from the red zone and what do you need to do to improve in that area?
A: Saw five turnovers. Weíre number one in the league in turnover ratio, defense and special teams are doing a great job getting us the ball and weíre taking care of it fairly well. But half of them, half the giveaways are in the green zone. When you turn the ball over five times down there, youíve got problems. Nine penalties, dropped balls, missed throws, and mental errors. Our focus needs to increase the longer you drive the ball and thatís a major factor. You have five turnovers, you lose five possessions and five opportunities to score right there off the bat. When the field shrinks and you have longer down and distances to go, it makes it a lot harder and a lot easier to call a defense. Thatís what we need to do, we need to focus on the details, chase the details and not touchdowns.
Q: When you say of the running game, ďWeíre winning the down consistently,Ē what you mean is that the play is blocked correctly?
A: The play is blocked, weíre gaining yards. We need to rip off a couple big ones. We need to minimize the zero and negative yardage runs when weíre getting hit in the backfield or whether we just get back to the line of scrimmage or lose one or two. We need to get those out of our system.
Q: It sounds to me, and I donít want to put words in your mouth, it sounds like itís on the backs to do that more than anything else.
A: Well, no. Itís everyoneís involved in that, itís not one group. Believe me, thereís enough to go around and Iím included. For the backs, the biggest thing for the backs is they need to be aware of the situation. When thereís one yard to go, they need to get that yard on third and one. When you get one-on-one with a safety, we expect our backs to beat that safety and take one the distance, and we havenít done that yet and itís a challenge on them to do that. We expect them to do it and we count on them to do it.
Q: Do you anticipate continuing to distribute their workload the way you have in terms of rotating those guys or might we see changes there?
A: At this point in time.
Q: When you talk about breaking an arm tackle, which back has been the best at that so far?
A: Theyíve each had their moments. Theyíve each had their moments. I donít know that one sticks out one way or the other. Andre (Williams) is a big, physical guy and if he gets a body one-on-one in the hole heís pretty good with it. Shane (Vereen) has some wiggle to him. They each have their own skillset. Rashad (Jennings) does a nice job, heís had some nice second half runs in games where heís come out. But we just need to play the way weíre capable of there.