Q: You aren’t ruling Bradshaw out for Sunday?
A: I’m not going to rule him out of anything. I’m not going to talk about the percentages or anything like that. You can speculate on that, knowing full well what the injury is.
Q: Does that situation feel a little better with
A: It certainly helps, yes. We have to have the two other young men ready to go as well.
RE: Bradshaw and his toughness.
A: The other day, for example, when he did injure the knee he got it taped and went back in. He had three straight what amounted to short yardage runs in a row to make a key first down on the fringe of the green (zone) and he did that. No one really knew what was going on there and he told me he had no limitations and so on and so forth and he’s a tough son of a gun. That’s why I say that. I say that with admiration.
Q: Can you talk about the energy David Wilson brings not only to special teams but your backfield?
A: Well, he’s an energetic guy to start out with and we’re looking forward to having him have his day and it started right away, as you well know with the kickoff returns. Anytime you give your team the ball at the 48-yard line with kickoff returns, you’ve done an exceptional job. Obviously the touchdown and Jernigan’s run on kickoff return as well, those were tremendous sparks and they really got people excited on the sideline and created opportunities for us that we haven’t been having. That and the turnovers have put the ball in field position as well. So he definitely brings a lot to the table and, of course, at the end of the game with his long run. That was quite a spark as well.
Q: Do you have to rely more on the medical people due to the fact that Bradshaw is so tough?
A: Absolutely. It’s going to be a medical position. It will be a decision in the best interest to the athlete. It will come from the medical people and we’ll live by it.
Q: Are the Falcons different than the last time you saw them in the playoffs?
A: A little bit. They have two brand new coordinators in Mike Nolan and Dirk Koetter and they do bring their own personality and style to the way that they’re playing. So there are differences.
Q: You told the team after the bye that they had a six-game season. How has that affected their approach?
A: Well, I just think we were all very much aware of the circumstances that we’re in and it certainly does sharpen your focus when you know that there isn’t a whole lot of margin for error here and so at this point in time we’re 2-1 and we have three games to play.
Q: What does it say about David Wilson’s work ethic and his mindset with the way he has progressed from early in the season where he had the fumble to where he is now?
A: Well, he’s always wanted to play. He’s always wanted the ball. He’s always wanted to be a factor, whether it be offense or special teams. He’s accepted any role. He was on our punt block team. He’s accepted any and every role that we’ve given him. He’s always come to practice or to the meetings with an interest in trying to learn everything as fast as he possibly could. Someone asked me that the other night about his attitude and his attitude has never changed. It’s always been an aggressive, positive attitude and his position has always been ‘I can do more. I want to help more. What can I do?’ And it’s been a question of how rapidly we could assimilate all of that into the game.
Q: Having a player like David Wilson emerge in the latter stages of the season, does that give you an advantage over other teams who probably aren’t as aware of him?
A: Again, it’s a form of more weapons and more people that have to be defended. The game that he had the other day definitely gets the attention of the league.
Q: Does the composition of your run-game change based on who’s in the backfield?
A: Not necessarily. No, I don’t think so. We attack by virtue of what we see and obviously what we think will work. If you’ve watched him run now, he’s powerful and has outstanding leg strength and he can move the pile. I don’t think there’s a whole lot of different things.
Q: Does the experience of having gone on the road in December and won big games give you an advantage in this situation?
A: Well, we’ll call upon all of that. We’ll call upon our veteran leaders. The main thing that we need to do is develop consistency in our play and all three levels continuing to support and contribute and not to have one of those days where we step back in an area. That’s what we’re trying to emphasize.
Q: Why have you had so much success in the Georgia Dome in your career?
A: I couldn’t tell you that. We’ve played well when we’ve played there. I remember the last time we were there, but we’ve played well. I don’t think there’s any other…I can’t analyze it a whole lot further than that. We’ve prepared and gone up against good teams, so obviously our focus has been good and it’s no different now.
A: Tricky. Well, they all want to play. He’s, “Aww, I feel better today,” but what can you do? “Oh, well we can’t run him today.” Oh, okay, good.
Q: With the way you have been using
Q: As far as David Wilson’s personality, is there anything that strikes you as particularly important? He’s a bubbly guy.
A: He is that. He’s got great energy. Sometimes that energy has to be a little bit toned down, but for the most part, that’s fine. He’s in there Monday doing everything in the weight room, too, and he just got his biggest exposure. I don’t have any added stories there.
Q: Do you have a problem with the backflips?
A: Next question.
Q: He told us that Jerry Reese told him to stop; would you prefer him to not do them?
A: You’re not going to get me on that one.
Q: Did the Carolina Panthers give you a blueprint of how to beat the Atlanta Falcons; they controlled the clock in that first half:
A: Thirteen snaps in the first half, yeah, that would be nice. A high-powered offense, with the other team having the ball is a pretty good way to go.
Q: You’ve always been good with coming up with motivational messages for your team; how do you personally come up with those?
A: Just keep very vigilant about where we are, knowing this team and the circumstances we’re in. Where the bye was this year, analyzing what’s in front of our team. Just constantly being aware of the mental position that our team is in, as well as the physical. Then, always being alert to recognize the things to challenge our team to make them be the best they can be.
Q: Do you have to tell them a lot this week?
A: (We) have to tell them a lot every week.
Q: With a game of this magnitude?
A: I tell them a lot every week. They will understand it for sure. They will understand, they feel it, they sense it, but you’re always maneuvering the information to create the attention and focus where it should be.
Q: Even with an experienced team, you don’t just assume that the information is being processed?
A: No, not at all. I try not to assume anything.
Q: Any frustration with the fact that both the other NFC East teams in the chase won on Sunday; despite your team’s big win?
A: Humble in victory. (You) have to take care of your own stuff. Quite frankly, what the other teams did, it’s fine and dandy, but we have to take care of what we do.
Q: Is there any change in
A: No, but we’re probably going to have to slow down a little bit, not do much, with him. Maybe bring him in a little bit as we move along.
Q: Later in the week?