Head Coach Gary Kubiak
On who has the advantage in the Ravens-Broncos matchup, considering he was Baltimore's offensive coordinator last season: "I think those things are overrated in our business. We have coaches … There are a lot of coaches [that] move around in this league and players move around in this league, and there [are] a lot of people familiar with each other. It gets down to the players. We have two good football teams going at it this week, and obviously, we have a lot of great respect for the organization and the players there."
On how much he absorbed in his one year in Baltimore: "I learned a great deal. First off, the coaching staff there is extremely experienced. They're a great group of guys. I know for me, personally, it was just a blessing to be around those guys last year and be a part of it. The organization – I've said many times – is so consistent in what they've done. And for me to watch John [Harbaugh] and Ozzie [Newsome] go about their business every day, from all of that – not just the coaching part, but the draft part, the offseason – [it was] very impressive, and I'm a better football coach and a better person for having a chance to be around that group."
On if it is ironic that his season opener is vs. the Ravens: "It's funny how that works, but you know who you're playing. Obviously, you don't know when you're playing them. It's a, obviously, great group we're playing, and they've done a darn good … [They are a] darn good road team. It's very consistent. We understand that. [We are] getting back at it today and getting ready to go."
On how much having a player like QB Peyton Manning helps with the uncertainty of Week 1: "He is obviously brilliant. He has been doing this for a long, long time, and he's like having a coach from the standpoint of putting together a game plan and what you want to do and how you want to attack people. It has been very challenging work with ... I get to go from Joe [Flacco] and Ozzie [Newsome] to Peyton [Manning], so I have been a very fortunate quarterback guy here the last couple years."
On how it's been working with QB Joe Flacco to QB Peyton Manning, in terms of installing offense: "It's very similar, as far as how you go about your preparation and how you get ready to play. It's very similar from that standpoint. Obviously, you have a different set of skill sets and things that you do different from one place to another. But as far as preparation and how we get ready to play – and how Joe [Flacco] and I got ready to play a game and how Peyton and I are getting ready to play a game – it's very similar."
On facing WR Steve Smith in his final season opener: "First off, he is a tremendous player. From a competitive standpoint, he's at the top of the list. He had a really good preseason, so [I am] very proud of Steve. The job he did for me there was tremendous. I saw where he said this is going to be it for him. I know I watched the film, and it sure doesn't look like it should be it. He ought to keep going, but that's up to Steve. So, tell him I said 'hello.'"
On what it's like to only be with a team for one season and have them keep the offensive principles: "I know [offensive coordinator] Marc [Trestman] really [well], and I've seen Marc … When I watch his film, I see his team and everything that he has done through the years [and has] been so successful with. They have a great group [with] he and [quarterbacks coach] Marty [Mornhinweg] coming in there. John [Harbaugh] always has a strong coaching staff from that standpoint – [and] obviously, the guys that I had been there with before – so we know how well they're coached as a football team, not just offensively."
On whether the Ravens' offense looks the same as last year's: "You see zone schemes, obviously. That's a big part of what we taught and what we do. Other than that, you see a lot of things, like I said, that Marc has done through his career. Opening day in this business, you're normally getting things you maybe haven't seen for a while, and everybody has to adjust, so I'm sure we'll have to be ready for everything."
On if there is anything he is doing differently since becoming a head coach again: "I think you do things differently. The eight years I was in Houston, I felt like I did things differently every year, and I think you're always trying to change and adapt and trying to do things better. That's part of the job, regardless if you're a head coach, coordinator, assistant – it doesn't matter. But obviously, I feel like I've taken a lot of things from John [Harbaugh], the organization, watching John handle his football team and how he goes about things that were extremely impressive to me. In this business, if you're smart, you have to learn from everybody you get a chance to be around, and I feel like I learned a great deal from that group."
On what he has seen from the Ravens' secondary, especially since CB Lardarius Webb didn't play in the preseason: "The preseason is like that. Sometimes you're missing guys like us here. We were missing Emmanuel [Sanders], and now we're getting him ready to go. You have to do what you have to do to get to opening day sometimes with some of your players. When you're getting ready to play, you're talking about scheme, you're talking about defensively what they do regardless of who is back there. [You] try to stay more focused on what you have to do with your group."
QB Peyton Manning
On what Broncos head coach Gary Kubiak has brought to the team: "[Gary] Kubiak is the head coach, so he has obviously brought a lot to the team. The team has just been learning every day what he expects of us, his philosophies, his ideas of what he wants his offense, defense, special teams to look like. We had a good offseason, good training camp, and hopefully, we can take some of that good work into the regular season. Like I said, everybody is just learning about him every day, and we're all trying to get on the same page."
On how much he has had to adapt and change this year: "It's always a change for everybody. Every year, really, it seems that way. There's always going to be new players, usually some new assistant coaches, and of course, we have a new head coach. There's always a change, so you have to have, I think, flexibility and learn to adjust, and like I said, try to understand what they expect of you and try to do [it]. It's your job to do that. I think every player has been trying to understand what they expect of us, and [we are] certainly trying to do that."
On what memories he has of the 2013 season opener vs. the Ravens: "I don't know. Two years ago – I don't know if that's still legal to even answer a question on that. (laughter) It has kind of passed the statute of limitations, I think." (laughter)
On whether he sees a lot of differences with the Ravens' defense on film: "Certainly some new players, but some things have always kind of remained the same with Baltimore's defense. They're very stout up front. They take a lot of pride in defending the run. They haven't had a 100-yard rusher in, I think, 20-plus games. Even though it's new players … They have new players that are playing well with a lot of talent, with a lot of size."
On how he goes about studying film leading up to Week 1: "I think it's probably tough for all teams – offense or defense. Not everybody got to play [with] their injuries. Teams are trying certain things. You experiment with certain things, certain plays, certain formations in the preseason. You have some things you're going to keep, some things you're not. You have to study kind of what you see on film, and you always have to be prepared for some things you haven't seen and be ready to adjust on the run during the course of the game or even during the course of the season."
On whether the Ravens' back end with S Will Hill III and S Kendrick Lewis looks like a better duo than what he faced in 2013: "Like I said, I haven't faced these guys, but it's an active bunch. You see [Will] Hill made a lot of plays last year covering some of the top tight ends, and [Kendrick] Lewis is a guy I played against when he was in Kansas City. [Lewis is] a smart, active safety."
On how he feels playing the Ravens in Week 1: "Week 1 is always exciting. Everybody is – around the league – excited. Players are looking forward to getting started and playing some games that count. But, we certainly understand what a tough challenge we have playing against these guys. These guys are one of the top teams in the NFL. [They are] a couple years off a Super Bowl, have been in the playoffs every single year, and certainly, know they're going to be a good team this year. Like I said, with all teams, everybody is excited to get started."
On the impression he had of head coach Gary Kubiak when he was Baltimore's offensive coordinator: "I don't know. I'm probably the wrong guy to ask on that. I'm sure the Baltimore coaches and players are probably [going to] give you good insight into that."
On when he has time to film television commercials: "Oh, shoot. Those are old, man. I did those in the offseason a long time ago, so I guess they save them for the start of football season. I apologize for when you're watching a TV show [that] you have to see my face on TV quite often, so I'm sorry. (laughter) It seems like that's what they always do. They always kind of wait until kickoff season. So, get ready to see my face probably a little too much. I apologize."
On whether he will call a few plays in a high-pitched voice similar to one of his TV commercials: "I don't think so. Not with those TV mics down there picking up everything. (laughter) *First off, that was a duplicate voice. Let's make that clear. *(laughter) I can't get that high, as far as high pitch, so I don't think you'll hear that."