Cleveland Browns head coach Pat Shurmur met with the media after Monday's Labor Day practice, but before team president Mike Holmgren's press conference. Reporters were no doubt interested in asking about running back Trent Richardson, who practiced for the first time since the first week of August. Shurmur's news conference transcript is organized by topic after the jump.
Opening Statement - Hot Weather & Preparing for Philadelphia
(Opening Statement) – "(Today was the) first real preparation for Philadelphia. The way this week is structured, of course, kind of practice then off, practice then off, then Wednesday we’ll get into the normal routine. (I’m) glad there was some heat out here today. It could be this hot at one o’clock on Sunday. It was good for the guys to get out here and run around. It has been good. I think we had the most guys at practice that we’ve had in a while. Other than a couple guys, I think we had most everybody out here, which is good. We’ll see where we go from there."
(On if he uses the film from the preseason game to study Philadelphia) – "Yes, we watch everything that the Eagles do and the preseason is no exception."
(On if he felt the team got used to Philadelphia’s speed in the preseason game) – "We saw how fast they were for sure. Some of our guys have learned something. Typically, you like to see improvement between the first and second time you do anything."
(On if he thinks the offensive line got an attitude because they were criticized against Philadelphia) – "I don’t know. I think our offensive line has an attitude. I’m not sure where the criticism came. Like I said pressure on the quarterback, sacks and scheme. I’m thinking of the first one, where he got hit on the screen pass. There are reasons why things happen, so where the criticism comes, I’m not concerned. I do know our guys are tough physical guys. I think their attitude is there, always has been."
(On how he feels with most of his team present for the first day of Eagles preparation) – "There were some guys out here in new numbers. Did you get that Nate (Ulrich)? (jokingly) I knew that of course, I okayed the number changes, but when you see it for the first time you’re like, ‘Wow, that’s a big guy.’ You know? It’s fun. You want all your guys out. You’d like to be able to go into a game deciding who your guys are having healthy scratches. Hopefully, that’s where we’ll get to."
All Questions About RB Trent Richardson's Return to Practice
(On how Trent Richardson looked at practice today) – "Trent, as you know, was out here today. He looked good. I knew he’d be out here today and he did a good job."
(On if he had to limit Trent today) – "(It’s) his first day back at practice, so we just did what we could do."
(On if Trent participated in team drills) – "Yes, he was in team."
(On if Trent was running in a way where you wouldn’t know he’d been hurt) – "Trent looked healthy running around today."
(On when he thinks he’ll make a decision if Trent will play Sunday) – "I think each person is different when they come back from injury and you handle each injury separately. We’ll see as we go. All along I’ve been hopeful that he’d be there."
(On what Trent does for the offense when he’s healthy) – "I think when you have a dynamic running back, there’s synergy. When you hand the ball off, you’re going to get yards. Then of course, they’ve got to decide how they want to defend him. Then of course, the passing game is obviously involved there as well. You’d like to be able to run it and pass it on any down. If you got a guy that’s a runner that can make guys miss or break tackles, I think that’s important."
(On if he expects to start Trent this game) – "If he’s ready to go, he will be our starter."
CB Dimitri Patterson's Return to Practice & S Eric Hagg Having the Flu
(On how Dimitri Patterson looked today) – "He looked good. Again, he was running around fast. I’ll go in and watch the tape. Again, some of these guys are just getting back into it. You haven’t been aware of it, but they’ve been doing lots of work behind the scenes. It doesn’t surprise me to see them out there running around."
(On Dimitri’s overall importance to the secondary) – "Dimitri and Buster (Skrine) are both (important). I see them the same. They challenge and they have speed and that allows them to play the slot as well as play outside when they’re running down the field on you. I think it’s important. It’s really important."
(On Eric Haag missing practice today) – "He’s just had a little stomach flu, so we just sent him home precautionary."
Every Thursday Will be Designated as the Padded Practice Day
(On if Wednesday will be the only day they wear pads every week) – "I’m going to do pads on Thursday. It’s Thursday because that’s when we do short yardage and goal-lines. I’ll elect to use the weeks that I can wear pads. As you know, we only get 14 of them. It doesn’t add up, but the weeks that I can wear pads, typically, I’ll do it on Thursday."
On if a Starting Replacement for DT Phil Taylor Has Been Decided On
(On if Billy Winn has done enough to earn a starting position) – "Billy has had an outstanding camp. We saw a lot of good football from him. You will see him in there on Sunday for sure."
(On if he has decided on a starter for Phil Taylor’s spot) – "We’ll talk about that when we release it. What I think you’ll see is a rotation there. Just like you will see at receiver, just like you will at tight end, linebacker and of course, when they go to nickel. That dictates some match-ups because you put a fifth DB (defensive back) on the field. You’ll see the guys that we have that are up and playing will all be in there."
(On previously saying he felt more comfortable with John Hughes against the run and Billy Winn against the pass) – "Did I say that? I think what I said was that Billy Winn has shown the ability to pass-rush inside, but I still think he can defend the run. I think they’ll both play on all downs. I don’t mean to do that on your questions, but I do remember my words and I don’t want you to infer something about my words. That’s why, I just want to get it straight, that’s all."
Facing Extra Pressure After the Ownership Change?
(On how Mike Holmgren has been since the ownership change) – "Mike’s the president and I’ve seen him do the things that he’s done as president since I got here 18 months ago."
(On if the pressure to win was sped up with ownership change) – "No, I have that tension I put on myself to win every year. This is the team we have. I love our team. We have certain games we’re going to go play and I can’t wait for us to go out and do it. Throughout, you guys have been asking me these questions, coaches live with that tension that you have to win. We all live with that. When you get involved with this profession, you just know that’s the most important thing. Everybody else tries to predict what kind of hand you got dealt or what the match-ups look like, but coaches are not in the prediction business. We’re out here to educate, encourage and inspire our players to go win."
Loose Ends - Nothing New on CB Joe Haden, Hopeful on TE Jordan Cameron
(On if there is any additional information on Joe Haden’s situation) – "I couldn’t talk about it if I knew. At this point, we’re moving forward with him. We’ll just see what happens on gameday."
(On if Jordan Cameron will be back for Sunday) – "We’re hopeful."