PITTSFORD, NY (Bills/WKBW) - Below are quotes from the Buffalo Bills following ltheir morning practice on Sunday 8/22/10:
TIGHT END JONATHAN STUPAR
AM Practice – August 22, 2010
On how he’s approaching his opportunity:
Injuries and stuff like that are all a part of the game. We’re just trying to, especially Mike [Matthews] and I, we’re just trying to get in as much as we can and do as much as we can to help the team without getting hurt or anything. With only two tight ends, it kind of limits you a lot. So, we’ll see what happens, but we’re trying our best to fill in the spots where it’s needed.
On how he feels he played in the preseason game vs. the Colts:
I still think they’re a lot of things we need to work on. As a team, we’re coming together offensively real well. We’re starting to mesh real well. Getting some balls from Trent [Edwards] in practice, and all of the other quarterbacks, is really helping out with all of our timing and everything like that. So, it’s going well.
On if it makes a difference to get extra reps and see more passes from QB Trent Edwards:
I think anytime you’re on [the same] page with the quarterback is key, no matter what position you are. They’re obviously the ones that get us the ball, so you’ve got to be where you need to be at, at the right time and the right place. So, the more reps you get at it, the better that’s going to get.
On some of the little things that he’s working on to improve his game:
During camp, especially, I try to improve on every aspect. A lot of people try to ask what are the certain areas [I’m working on]. But I think whenever you get satisfied in that one area and you stop working on it, that’s when you start failing in that area. I think it’s better to keep working on everything – the run blocking, the pass catching, my route running, my timing on everything – just the little things, everywhere, that I try to work on.
On his thoughts about fellow TE Shawn Nelson and possibly playing in the regular season:
Shawn’s got his own situation that he’s going through right now. I’m trying to be supportive as a teammate with what’s going on, but the NFL’s all about opportunities. I’m going to try to make the best of my opportunity that I have. I’m sure Mike [Matthews] is doing the same thing with Derek [Schouman’s] injury too. It’s one of those things where it happens and you have to put the next foot forward and go from there.
SS Donte Whitner
AM Practice – August 22, 2010
On practicing inside:
We would prefer to be outside. That’s where football is played. But due to conditions out there, we had to come in here. Another part of football is being mentally sharp and knowing your assignment. A lot of times, walk-thrus can really help you as far as when you’re in a football game, it’s tough out there, you’re tired, and you have to be mentally focused on your job. So walk-thru is just another form of practicing, just without all the physical (aspect).
On whether the truth lies somewhere in the middle between the loss to Washington in the first preseason game and the win against Indianapolis in the second:
No, I think the truth lies [with] what you were seeing last week [in the Indianapolis game]. The thing about that [Washington] game is, we didn’t really play a lot of coverages, especially in the secondary. We have a lot of things that we have there. I think we have about 60 or 70 different things, as far as blitzes or coverages or ways to take away routes that hurt us in the past, just a lot of ways to attack quarterbacks. We feel like we’re going to be able to do that. We’re going to be able to affect a lot of quarterbacks. We play a lot of good quarterbacks, so we need a large arsenal to be able to affect those guys. That’s what we’re working on. That’s why [we’re having] all these practices. We’re still doing two-a-days, and you have guys that are out of camp already. You’re working. But I think the last game is a really good sign. We have to build on it. We had a good practice yesterday and we’ll have a couple good more practices. We’re going to go out and play Cincinnati and we expect a good showing for Cincinnati.
On how he explains the huge improvement in the short time between the first two games:
I think guys just had jitters that first game, [with] everything being new. The first time out, we really didn’t know what to expect from Washington and we really didn’t game-plan at all. We really didn’t watch film on those guys. We just went out there and we played our rules. Sometimes, the coaching staff and game-planning a little bit or taking a certain guy out of a game can be a tremendous difference, and we didn’t do that the first game. W did it a little bit the second game with [Colts WR] Reggie Wayne. We probably expect to do something again this week against those guys [on Cincinnati], just to get game-ready because the season is quickly approaching.
On whether he’s looking forward to seeing former Bills WR Terrell Owens when the team plays Cincinnati:
I’m looking forward to seeing T.O. and [Chad] Ochocinco. He sent me a couple messages on Twitter. It’s all a lot of fun, but when we go out there on the football field we expect to go out there and have a great showing against those guys. We feel like we’re one of the top secondaries in the National Football League and we have to go out and show it each and every Sunday.
Guard Eric Wood
AM PRACTICE – Aug. 22
On playing with T Cornell Green:
Cornell’s a good player and brings a lot of experience to our offensive line which is something we were in need of. He does a good job and it won’t be hard for me to play off him because I’ve seen what he can do all through OTAs and and we’ve got to play to each others’ strengths. A lot of it this year will come down to winning one-on-one battles. That’s where we broke down a lot last year and that’s mainly what it’s going to come down to.
On having a quick turnaround from the Thursday night’s game to practicing again at camp:
We’ve got some good work in the other night but 20 plays is less than a normal practice for me. So, where the pounding wasn’t as much on the leg, it was a really good experience for building some confidence going into the season and getting to work with the other guys.
On how the strong running game reflects on the play of the offensive line:
We have some new pretty good schemes and I’d say the strength of most of us up front is our run-blocking ability. But we also have three really good running backs, two emerging running backs, so they’ve made us look good. I mean, 31 yards the other night, CJ (Spiller) can have to himself, making a guy miss in the backfield. We’ve had some guys make us look good, too. We have some younger legs, so that often bodes well in the run game because you can get downfield and do a little bit more for your guys downfield. Hopefully we can put up some big plays this year with the added speed we have.
On what the offensive line is focusing on during practice:
We have to keep getting better at everything. We can’t narrow it just to pass protection. But we realize that one of our weaknesses, especially last year, was our pass protection. We’ve been working hard on it and we get a good look from guys. Kyle Williams is as good a D-tackle pass-rusher as there is in the league, so we get to work against him and I think that will make all of us better inside and they get some very good speed looks on the outside. I think it will come in time and it will come with experience for a lot of us. But we’re looking forward to going out and showing what we can do this year.
On if the coaches will give him some more playing time in the next preseason game:
We should be and I don’t think we’ll put the starter with anyone but our starting O-line. So hopefully we’re all good to go for the full time. Me, Demetrius (Bell) and Cornell (Green) are all at different stages of our injuries so hopefully we’ll be at the point where we can play the whole time.
On how the offensive line played during the game against the Colts:
I think we played alright. We had some breakdowns and some of the stats were skewed - C.J. (Spiller)’s run that he got all by himself - but we played pretty well. We moved some people off the ball and, for the most part, we had a couple breakdowns in pass protections, especially the first unit. Besides that, we played pretty clean football, which is what we have to do and we have to play more consistent.
On using criticism as a motivator to play better:
It is a motivator, and it was for us last year when we didn’t perform all that well so it can’t just be a motivator, you actually have to go out there and bring it. We know that a lot of the criticism on offense is going to be over us. We have talent and you can see that. We have a Pro Bowl running back, a first-round draft pick at running back, and possibly the best one of the three is Freddy (Fred Jackson). So we have to be able to move the football this year and we have talent so a lot of it is going to come down to us.