Denver Broncos coach Vance Joseph met with the media Monday, talking about new addition Adrian Peterson, the running back position, quarterback Paxton Lynch and more...
On the Redskins signing RB Adrian Peterson
"He's a good back. Obviously, they're beat up at the halfback position and he's a proven back in this league. It'd be tough to get him stopped."
On if S Su'a Cravens has had a setback
"He's actually getting better. We're being smart with him. He had a setback about a week ago, but he's actually getting better after this weekend. We'll see. His next step is to get back to the practice field before he plays in games. We'll see. It's getting better."
On if Cravens needs to play in the preseason for Denver to know the kind of player they acquired
"I would say yes. He's a guy that joined us in the spring. He hasn't been with us. The position he plays is the dime backer spot. It's a critical for us, so absolutely he has to play eventually so we can see what we've got in him."
On S Will Parks
"I thought from the scrimmage to now, Will Parks has played well for us. He's been fully engaged, he's a guy that's played well in the past for us, so I'm not surprised by that. He's done a good job for us on defense and special teams."
On CB C.J. Smith
"C.J. Smith is a player that's been consistent since the spring. He's made plays on the ball for us, he's played nickel and outside corner for us, so I'm not surprised he plays well in actual games. He had a play he almost made to seal the game on Saturday. He didn't make it, but he was there. He's been a consistent performer for us."
On if anything else jumps out to him after watching Saturday's film
"After really watching the tape, I was really impressed with our guys. We made a lot of progress. We didn't win the game, and that's always the most important thing, but we made a lot of progress offensively and defensively. Offensively, we got off to a better start. We scored some points, and it would have been two touchdowns outside of (penalties). Defensively, I was impressed with our guys. Obviously, stopping the run. They averaged like 2.4 yards per carry and that was big for us. Outside of the third-and-15 penalty, it would've been a pretty nice performance for the defense. That was a good sign on both sides of the ball."
On the running backs
"All four or five of the guys played well again. Right now, it's an open competition still. That being said, 'Book' (RB Devontae Booker) and (RB) Royce (Freeman) have been our leads guys going in to the game, and (No.) 2 (RB Phillip Lindsay) has been our change-up guy. He's a package guy, along with (RB) De'Angelo (Henderson) and (RB) David (Williams) had a nice run in the fourth quarter that would've probably sealed the game. It came back on a holding penalty. All of those guys are doing some good things. We'll see."
On if QB Paxton Lynch will play this week
"Yeah, everyone on the roster should have a chance to play again. We'll see about that. We haven't discussed play time yet. Your third game is always different. You want your starters to play more snaps, so we'll see how much our backups play."
On why G Menelik Watson was no longer a fit
"I would speak more to our guys that are playing well, like (G/T) Billy Turner and 'Eli' (T Elijah Wilkinson). Those guys have played really well. I'm not sure if he wasn't a fit any longer for our football team, but it just speaks to our guys who are playing really well behind him. And, he's been injured. It's hard to make a football team injured. You've got three or four guys behind you playing good football. It wasn't about fit, it was more about Billy, Eli and those guys playing good football--and (G) Max Garcia. Max has been having a hell of a camp. He's playing like a starter, so it's more about those guys than it was Menelik not being a fit."
On what steps he wants the team to take in next preseason game
"Just continuing to make more progress. I thought (QB) Case (Keenum) was good but not great. He missed two or three throws that he wants back, so we have room for improvement. Even in the fourth quarter, we're driving to win the game and Billy Turner whiffed and gave a sack up. There's plenty to correct. We're looking for more progress this week."
On ILB Alexander Johnson's first game
"He did OK. He had about 14 snaps, I think four on (special) teams and 10 on defense. He's obviously a big, powerful man. He made a nice tackle on kickoff and just ran through a double team. His physical ability is obviously apparent. He needs to play more football, he needs to be in more meetings. He's been here now for what, a week? A week and a half? We've got plenty of time to get him ready to go."
On if CBs Isaac Yiadom and Tramaine Brock made him more comfortable with depth at the position
"Well, Brock's played. He's played on playoff teams. He's been a starter team in the league. He plays that way--he plays really comfortable. I'm not concerned about Brock. Isaac is getting some lessons from preseason. That's the right time to get them. He's always in position. His issue right now is finishing and finding the football. Obviously, third-and-15, you don't want that foul. Just stay on top, play the ball, relax--but that comes with time. With young corners, it's hard not to foul, because every ball thrown in this league is a catchable ball. That's different than college. In college, he's in great coverage, ball is overthrown and we're off the field. In this league, balls are being thrown to be caught. He's got to relax and finish better."
On if WR Isaiah McKenzie is in a spot where he can't fumble any more
"I hope not. I want him to remain confident. He's done some really good stuff. I don't want him to go in the tank because of one play. He's got to continue to push and compete, and right now, he's in a good spot. I wouldn't want him to take a step back. Hopefully, he remains confident and keeps performing."
On if Lynch could still win the No. 2 spot back
"We'll see. It's early. We've got two more weeks and things happen in this league. He is focused on competing. He's obviously motivated by what happened to him a couple weeks ago. That's a good sign. He's upset by it and he should be upset. We've got two weeks to compete and we'll see where it falls."
On if Lynch is doing extra work
"He's always done that, he really has. Really, it's been a group effort with all three quarterbacks. Case had grabbed those two guys and they're working. (QB) Chad (Kelly) is working hard, Paxton's working hard, and it's because of Case. He's dragging them along. He's been a great example for both young quarterbacks."
On if there is still gray area with the new helmet rule
"It's really gray right now. I think they're calling it conservatively because they want to get it right, I think. They want to change the behavior. The problem I'm having with the call right now is it's been bang-bang plays, and it's hard to tell if the head is hitting the body. That's the rule, right? It's not about if the hit is down. If it it's the body, that's the penalty. So, with Isaac's, his head was down, but it didn't hit the body. It was placed to the side of the receiver and it was shoulder on the body. Not a foul. Even (Bears CB Kyle) Fuller's on (FB) Andy (Janovich), it was head down, but shoulder hit the pad. Not a foul. The foul is when the head hits the body. That's what we have to be careful of, but it's hard to tell, because you tackle with your shoulder but it's led by the head. It's hard to officiate that really cleanly. We'll see how it shakes out, but right now, it's gray for us and the players."
On if Janovich could've been flagged on that play
"I don't know, he's defending himself. So, Fuller's a cornerback coming to hit him, what's he going to do, keep his head up and take it in the chin? He drops his shoulder, which the head's attached to the shoulder, the head's going to drop. So, we have to be careful. We have to use common sense. We know what spearing looks like, so call spearing, but don't call good football tackles. Call it when it's spearing, if it's not spearing, don't call it. That's my opinion."