Spags Conference Call Recap: 9/5

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(On what he likes about the final 53 man roster)
“Well, I said to them this morning, what we did attempt to do…You guys have talked about it a lot, we did attempt to create a lot of competition with the new roster for battles during training camp and I think that within the 53 there’s still a tremendous amount of competition. I think that should happen. They should come out here and compete against each other to make each other better every day. I think this group will do that. That’s one of the things I like about it. Hopefully there will be more and more as we move forward.”

(On what the feeling is like coming out with 20 less guys)
“It means a lot of things. It means there is some disappointment. There’s families that are affected is what it means. There’s lives of guys, that’s hard. Very, very difficult. And yet I think for the most part the guys that get involved in this business they understand it, and it comes at this time of year. But it was strange, and even in the team meeting there were a lot of empty seats. But you get used to it and you move on and we just want to rally the 53 guys plus the eight guys on the practice squad to be a strong unit as a group, have a great work ethic, and keep team first, always that way.”

(On challenge of roster changes and teaching system to new players)
“That’s the challenge of the coaches. That’s why the coaches are here and I think we have a good staff to do that. But it’s not easy to do that. You certainly don’t want to have a lot of that going into your first game. But most of these guys we bring in, (General Manager) Billy (Devaney) and his staff have done their research and we feel like that’s one of the things we put a lot of onus on, the intelligence part. So hopefully they can get up to speed quickly. And then we’ll see where we’re at at the end of the week and decide who’s on the 46.”

(On QB Thaddeus Lewis rejoining Pat Shurmur with the Browns)
“We were hoping, obviously, to have Thad here on the practice squad. It’s the risk we took. I wish him a lot of luck. I love Thad. He was great for us. I know he’ll do a good job.”

(On how good the team needs to be with the toughness of their schedule)
“The four preseason games are in the rearview mirror and the only that’s in the forefront is Philadelphia. That’s only the way I can describe it or do it. Philadelphia is an elite team. It’s going to be a hell of challenge, and I think our guys are looking forward to it. But in this league all 16 are going to be challenges so we’ll try to face them one at a time and just focus on the one at hand.”