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Week 1: Denver Broncos Conference Calls

Posted Sep 1, 2013

Head Coach John Fox 

On how long it took his team to move on from the playoff loss to Baltimore last year: “Last year is last year. One of the exciting things about opening the season is you’ve got to open the day of a whole new season. Everybody is 0-0, and you start fresh. I guess you’d say that’s water under the bridge.” 

On if it’s positive to open the season with the Ravens and face them right out of the gate: “Really, at the end of the day, you line up and do what they [the NFL] tell you to do. That’s how we approach it, and obviously, we’re very excited to play. We’re kicking off the NFL season, we’re playing the defending Super Bowl champs, so there is a lot to be excited about.” 

On what he thinks about the Ravens’ new pieces on defense: “I’ve got a lot of respect for their coaching staff, on both sides of the ball, and the kicking game. Obviously, I’ve known John and the Harbaugh family for about 30 years, so there’s great respect there. And Ozzie [Newsome], I think his record speaks for itself as far as what he’s done with personnel. I see a lot of talented guys. [There are] some different jersey numbers than I know what you all are used to, but I see some very good football players.” 

On if his current wide receivers group is the best that he’s ever coached: “I’ve been blessed to be around some great players, no doubt. But I think as far as skins on the wall, it’s probably the most productive group I’ve been around.” 

On his first reaction when he saw QB Joe Flacco’s poster on the side of Denver’s stadium: “I’ll be honest with you, I haven’t seen it. I think our fans and whatnot, they’re excitable, but I don’t think they understand that it’s a league game and that’s the policy. But we’ve got great fans, so I understand that, and that’s their deal. It doesn’t get a reaction out of our football team.” 

On his overall impressions of Ravens RB Ray Rice: “He’s probably one of the better backs in the league. One thing about this league at running back, the skill at that position is not just running the ball; it’s pass protection, it’s catching the ball out of the backfield, it’s executing screens. Baltimore’s offensive staff does a great job of getting him opportunities in both those situations, so he’s one of the elite guys in the league for sure.” 

On his thoughts of going up against OLB Elvis Dumervil after the way his tenure in Denver ended: “It’s like I told our media here: We’ve got a great relationship, and I’ve got great respect for Elvis. I wish him nothing but the best, except this week.” 

On how much he misses not having Dumervil around: “He was a captain, he’s a good guy, [and] I’ve got great respect, so you always miss players. I mean, we just cut 20-some-odd guys; I’ll miss them, but the rules are the rules and the business is the business.”


QB Peyton Manning 

On how long it took him to get over the playoff loss to the Ravens: “I covered that just about all offseason. I know I’m talking to you guys for the first time, but I guess you just have to probably check some old clips for quotes.” 

On his impressions of Ravens CB Corey Graham: “I think their entire defense is good. I know they’ve got some new players this year, but from what I’ve seen on film, they’ve replaced them with more good players. I think their secondary is tough – [Corey] Graham, [former CB Cary] Williams. They’re getting No. 21 back off the injury – [Lardarius] Webb, so it’s a tough secondary.” 

On facing Ravens OLB Elvis Dumervil for the first time: “I’ve played against him before, certainly, in Indianapolis. Elvis [Dumervil] is an outstanding player, and he gives them a great pass rusher, great athlete. It will be a tough challenge for our guys up front.” 

On his comfort level with Broncos WR Wes Welker and the weapons around him: “Certainly, anytime you have a new player, you try to take advantage of the time they allow you to get on the same page. It doesn’t happen overnight. I think it does take more than just some mini-camps and OTAs. I think Wes [Welker] is a hard worker. He and I will continue to work throughout the season to continue to firm up our timing. But I appreciate his work ethic – the way he works, the way he comes to practice every day to work and get better.” 

On if he likes facing the Ravens in Week 1: “The schedule is what it is. Thursday night game, obviously, it’s a short week – it’s a quick turnaround. You’re figuring out what your roster is and just coming out of the preseason, so it’s less time to prepare than most other teams have. [We’re] playing an awesome team and starting off the NFL season, and I think both teams will be excited.” 

On his thoughts on TE Dallas Clark playing for the Ravens: “It’s hard to give a quote on Dallas Clark in a short answer. He was one of my favorite teammates and a was great player during all of his years in Indianapolis. Like I said, just a short, one question doesn’t do that justice. He’s a great friend, and I’m glad to see he’s back in the NFL, he’s out during training camp, and he’ll be a tough test for our defense as well.” 

On flexibility at the wideout position with WR Demaryius Thomas and WR Eric Decker: “They’re both good players. [Eric] Decker is a guy who’s played inside [and] played outside. Demaryius [Thomas] has got that rare combination of great size and great speed. Those guys have worked hard this offseason. It’s our second year playing together. It’s not our fifth or sixth year, so we’re still working on things [and] trying to improve our timing as well.” 

On the increasing popularity of the no-huddle offense: “I still believe it comes down to the execution and the players executing the plays. ‘Tempo’ is a common word, but just because you’re running plays fast, if you’re not blocking anybody or not running good routes or not accurate with the football, I don’t think it really matters. It’s still an execution game. That’s what we want to try to do as an offense every week is execute, and that’s what the defense is trying to do, also.”

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