PITTSFORD, NY (Bills Release) - Below are quotes from Bills head coach Chan Gailey, and his players, following Monday's work on the field at St. John Fisher College:
Head Coach Chan Gailey
PM Practice – August 1, 2011
On an injury update:
(Kelvin) Sheppard is going to be out for a little while, I think at least a week and then we will reevaluate. We are looking at the same thing with (Marcus) Easley. Dominic Cook tweaked his knee they told me, I don’t know the exact extent of it but they took him in for more examination. I will find out more tonight and tomorrow morning.
On getting CB Reggie Corner off the Physically Unable to Perform list:
It was good to get him back on the field. We will work him in slowly to make sure we are smart with him. It looked like he did a pretty good job but I will have to go watch the tape to get a better look.
On how RB C.J. Spiller can improve to contribute:
Two things, he needs to make sure he takes care of the football and he has to be a better blocker. The things we have to do are we have to create more situations where he gets the ball in space. That’s where his forte is; having the ball in some area where he can work. That is the one thing we are trying to work on this year.
On how big of a setback it is for WR Marcus Easley:
It’s a big setback for him and it hurts our football team. We would like to know what he can do. We didn’t get a real good look at him last year and obviously we don’t have a very good look at him now. It hurts him and it hurts us but that is just one of the things you go through, that’s life in the league.
On if Spiller had to learn to run differently last year:
No, I don’t think that is it. I don’t think he learned how to run differently. I think he did realize he can use more patience in his running and he has shown that a lot better in the three days we had thus far. Hopefully all of what I just said about C.J .(Spiller) will make him more productive as a player.
On there being holes created by the offensive line today:
There were a few things there but I feel like by just watching our football team we are more physical then we were last year. I feel more push defensively when I stand behind the offense. There seems to be more things happening on the offensive side of the line of scrimmage than we had last year. It seems that way, I don’t know if it will be true but that is how it felt the first couple days in pads.
On NT Michael Jasper and why they took a chance on him:
He was a 440-pound guy that could move pretty well and those guys don’t come along every day. As our scouts started to talk to him, we told him if you get down to a certain weight then we will take you serious. The guy worked and got down and then he did a workout. And it’s obvious that he has talent. It’s whether or not he can translate it to this level of play or not. It’s worth it, it’s worth the chance.
LB Shawne Merriman
PM Practice – August 1, 2011
On the addition of LB Nick Barnett:
To us as players it shows what we want to do as a team. Bringing in a guy like that who has a Super Bowl ring and has been on championship teams. You want to bring more of that attitude and more of that winning, which is what we’re trying to do. Just having him here gives a guy like me and the rest of the Bills a chance to gel together. We’ve got a bunch of young guys. The young guys get a chance to watch him. It’s a lot of learning but we’re still learning, too. To play on the same team, play on the same defense and to get better.
On how it felt getting back out on the field:
It’s been a long time, so for me it feels good. I’m trying to still work out a little bit, getting a hold of my mistakes and getting things going again. When you get these pads on it’s a difference now.
On the first time he saw his contract and signed it:
The same thought that’s been going through my mind that I finally made it. The Draft came along, the Combine, all the workouts, it’s all worth it. It paid off to the point that I get to sit down and sign my name. It’s all mine.
On how he feels after the lockout:
I’ve been working. I’m not going to say I’m back, back yet because we still have a lot of time before we really have to slap on the pads and go against another team. But everyday I’m feeling a little bit better, and that’s all that’s important
RB Fred Jackson
PM Practice – August 1, 2011
On practicing with upper pads today:
It feels good, its been awhile, been too long. A lot of guys were excited about it to just see what it felt like with them on. We got in some good work today and I’m real excited about that because we have something to work off of and hopefully we can come back out here tomorrow and keep on working.
On how the offense is coming together so far:
Great, especially without us being in contact with each other like we wanted to be in the offseason. I think everybody is in there playbooks. (Ryan) Fitzpatrick is getting everyone in the right spot and I definitely feel like we’re moving in the right direction.
On having the same offensive line as last season:
We’re starting relatively familiar with one another. I understand what they’re trying to do and they’re familiar with me as well. The more familiarity we get with each other the better we are. The ability to get back and hit the ground running with the same group of guys is huge.
On Eric Wood moving to center:
He’s definitely comfortable in there. I think that is the most important thing, if you can be comfortable doing something it allows you to pick it up a lot easier. He is right at home in it, getting guys in the right spots, making the right calls and communicating with the guys out there. Anytime you got a guy like that out there it allows you to move forward as an offense.
On any difference with QB Ryan Fitzpatrick coming in as the starter:
Right back at it. He’s a smart guy, he’s in the playbook and he knows what is going on. He’s jumping right in feet first. I heard him say this is the first time he has come into camp and he is the guy.
On no false starts or offside’s during practice today:
It was a lot smoother today especially with us making the transition coming in here without working together all offseason. That is a credit to everybody. We’re all on the same page, guys are studying their playbook and took time to develop their skills even though we weren’t here and it’s all showing up on the field.
On coming into the camp as the main running back:
It is a little bit different but you never want to be too comfortable. There is always a guy out there working hard to be where you are at. I know C.J. (Spiller) wants the opportunity to play so I am putting in the work to try and be the number one guy that they can lean on. I am going to approach every game like it is my last chance that I will have the opportunity.
RB C.J. Spiller
AM Walk-Thru – August 1, 2011
On his improvement this year over last year:
I feel more comfortable in the offense this year than last year. Missing a couple days of camp didn’t help but its nice getting back to football again.
On making a big step this year:
I’m starting to put my foot in the ground and feeling better but it’s something I have to continue to get more and more confidence every day and try to continue to learn. I definitely feel more comfortable then I did last year.
On if his confidence was hurt last year:
When you’re not making those types of plays for your team to try and help them win you kind of lose a little bit of your confidence. This year I believe I became much more mentally strong through the whole offseason, so we will see if it pays off.
On how he feels with his patience and cutting ability:
The first couple of days have been pretty good but it is definitely about hitting the right spots where I need to hit them. I need to continue to build on that every day and hopefully I do that.
On the expectations of being the ninth overall pick:
There are always expectations for me and our team every year, it doesn’t matter what pick you were. Being a top 10 pick you are going to have higher expectations, you can kind of sense it. Fortunately I have high expectations for myself and the season didn’t go how I planned but this is a new year and hopefully it is a better year for me.
On his role with the team this year:
It’s too early right now to determine that. We have a lot of weapons on offense with the additions we had in free agency and the guys we have coming back. My main role is to try and help this team win.
On the number change from 21 to 28:
I always wanted to get back to 28; it was just a matter of when it came available. I knew I was going to switch back to it sooner or later. Me and Leodis (McKelvin) talked about it as we got towards the end of the season and it became reality. This is a number that I have had since my 10th grade. Last year being 21 just felt different. Now I’m back to my original number. It may help me play better, it may not but I still have to go out there and get my job done. I’m glad it was able to work out for the both of us.
On what he took from last year the most:
I was able to go back and watch all my runs from last year. I wasn’t as patient as I normally am and sometimes I over ran the hole. I wasn’t using my ability to my advantage when I got in the open field so that was something I really tried working on in the offseason. Putting my foot in the ground, going north to south and when you get that one on one make the defender guess. I definitely see an improvement already through these first couple of days but after we get these pads on time will tell.
On his disappointment from last year:
It was definitely frustrating. We went 4-12 and didn’t make the playoffs and any time you don’t make the playoffs that is a disappointment because that is what you’re playing for, to win and be the last team to hold the trophy. We know what it takes to get there; we just need to take one step at a time.
On if he thinks he can be an every down back in the NFL:
Of course I can. It’s good to have other guys like Fred Jackson and the guys we brought in because it’s a long NFL season and your body takes a pounding. You need fresh legs out there to use to your advantage and help your offense. Guys in a one back system are probably more banged up then guys in a two back system. I’m definitely happy to have a guy like Fred because we take a whole lot of pounding off each other.
On if he senses he can blow it up this year:
Hopefully. It’s still too early to tell, but my goal is to help my team win.
NT Michael Jasper
PM Practice – August 1, 2011
On his size:
I never noticed it, I grew up with it. Usually I don’t look at myself every day. I look around and say “oh, that’s a big guy” and everyone turns around and says “who you talking big?” It’s just something you grow up with and get used to.
On if he was surprised when he heard his name called during the Draft:
I’m still surprised. Before I figured they were going to go with somebody else. It was kind of surreal when they asked me if I wanted to come to Buffalo. I definitely wasn’t expecting the call.
On how hard it was to get ready for training camp:
It really was hard. It made me have a certain dedication. That’s what I did it all for, was to be here. They took that step and drafted me and gave me the opportunity to be where I want to be.
On losing the weight:
All of the other scouts that came through, were telling me that I had to be 320, 310, they were giving me unrealistic goals the reach. Finally I heard, “get down to 400, let’s see if you can get to 400.” So that was a mark. I set it, attacked it, and got down the 400.
On what his realistic expectation is going through camp:
Just to contribute. This is a great ball club, a great team with great history and I just want to contribute to it.