Dennis Allen took a seat in front of the media on Tuesday in the aftermath of Oakland’s Monday Night Football loss to the Denver Broncos. Allen took the time to address the injury statuses of Terrelle Pryor and Tracy Porter as well as the status of David Ausberry who recently was placed on the IR.
Here is the transcript of Tuesday’s press conference from the Raiders official website
Opening Statement: Okay, really not much to update as far as the injuries are concerned; Terrelle Pryor has a concussion; Tracy Porter with a concussion also, and Jamize Olawale is getting an MRI on his ankle. That’s really all the injury updates I have for you, other than your normal bumps and bruises after a game. Just going back and looking at the tape, talking about last night’s game, obviously we played a good football team on Monday night in their place. They played extremely well; we didn’t play as well as we think we are capable of playing. There are a lot of things that we’ve got to get cleaned up and get corrected to get ready for this week against Washington. It’s one game; we can’t dwell on it; we’ve got to move on and get ready for Washington. I think when you look at the game, I think they controlled the line of scrimmage. We weren’t able to run the ball like we wanted to run the ball. We didn’t stop the run like we need to be able to stop the run; we’ve got to get better in that area. I thought a critical stretch in the game was with a little under six minutes to go in the second quarter, we hit Dmoe [Denarius Moore] on a 73-yard touchdown pass; they came right back and were able to respond. After that we went three and out and then they got another field goal and really kind of put the game out of reach. The disappointing thing in the game was that every time I felt like we got some momentum going, we made a few plays, every time we scored, we allowed them to answer right back, and that’s something that we’ve got to get better at. When we have the momentum we’ve got to find ways to continue that. So, I don’t think we played as well as we’re capable of playing. We’ve got a lot of improvement that we’ve got to get done on a short week getting ready for Washington.
Q: What is the cutoff for Pryor if he can’t practice tomorrow, if he isn’t cleared? Can he miss that day and still be the guy?
Coach Allen: Yeah, I think we’ll look at it. He’s got to go through the protocol. So, we’ll look at how he’s doing tomorrow; we’ll see whether or not he’s able to go or not, and then we’ll see as the week goes on and make a determination on what we can do.
Q: Because of all the protocol do you have to go through the week as if [Matt] Flynn’s your guy?
Coach Allen: I think we’ve got to be prepared for any option. Obviously if Terrelle’s not able to go, Matt Flynn will be the guy. So I think we’ve got to be prepared for either scenario.
Q: Does that complicate things in terms of prep because you have two different styles of quarterbacks and Greg [Olson] may use different sections of his playbook for different guys?
Coach Allen: Yeah, obviously it’s a little bit of a challenge, but that’s where we’re at and that’s what we’ve got to get ready to do. So we’ve got to have a game plan that if Terrelle’s able to go, that he can go in and execute and give us a chance to win, and if not we’ve got to have something in there that gives Matt Flynn a chance to win and have success. So, that’ll be something that we’ll have to work extremely hard on this week to get a good game plan for either scenario.
Q: There’s a lot of overlap between the two of them [Pryor and Flynn] what they can do within your base offense, right?
Coach Allen: Oh yeah, there’s a ton of overlap. I mean, listen, we haven’t just thrown out the offensive system and changed it. We’ve added some plays that we feel like lends itself to Terrelle’s skill set, but we still have a lot of the same concepts and a lot of the same things that we can do with either quarterback.
Q: He [Pryor] stayed in for two plays after the hit; what went on? Was it just something where it was lingering or was it something else?
Coach Allen: Obviously he took a good shot. They were reviewing the play. Terrelle came over. We were talking about the next play; he didn’t show any signs of any concussion or anything like that. We put him back in the game, and then when he came back over to the sideline that’s when our medical people took a look at him and decided that we needed to send him into the locker room for further evaluation. Football is a tough sport and there’s going to be collisions and you try and make sure you do everything you can to take into account players safety. I think our medical people followed the protocol that’s set forth by the NFL. They followed it exactly how it’s supposed to be followed, and when we determined that he [Pryor] had a concussion we got him out of the game.
Q: What did you think of the hit, legal?
Coach Allen: Yeah, I didn’t see anything wrong with the hit. I mean it was in the tackle box, so we’ll see whether or not that’s the lining up of the player within the tackle box it’s really legal.
Q: With the score the way it was, did you hesitate at all to run him or did you just have to play the game the way you want to play it?
Coach Allen: You know we’re playing the game. You know, if you’re going to put him in there you’ve got to play the game, you’ve got to call the game that gives him the best chance to have success. So, I don’t have any problem with what we did. It’s unfortunate that he took the hit, but we’ve got to move on from it.
Q: Coach, what are some of the positives you took away from last night, and what can you build on going into this week against Washington?
Coach Allen: Obviously, when you lose a game in that manner there’s not a ton of positives that you take out of it. I think our guys continued to battle and continued to fight. We scratched back in a couple times in the game and a couple times during the game we made plays that brought us back in and gave us a chance. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to respond defensively and come up with the types of stops we needed to make. There’s a lot of improvement we need to make. I thought overall the pass protection was fairly solid. Overall, we have to do a better job in the run game and being able to get the run game going. I just don’t think we had enough flow offensively in what we needed to do. I think time of possession-wise, that’s an area we have to continue to work to improve. I thought Dmoe [Denarius Moore] played well. I thought he made some good plays in the game and made some great catches and gave us a chance. It was nice to see him get a real explosive game and explosive touchdown. When you lose a game in that manner there’s not a whole lot of positives that you take out of it. You have to just work to get better.
Q: They bottled up [Darren] McFadden pretty good, mostly on the inside. Do you look to get him more out wide going forward or was that just a tribute to what Denver was doing?
Coach Allen: I think it was a tribute to what they were doing and I think we have to continue to look at ways we can get Darren the football and get him some space he can run the ball in. Like I said, we got ourselves in a situation there where we had a lot of three and outs, it was hard to get much of a flow and then we got behind and threw the ball a little bit more. We have to be able to maintain possession of the ball. We have to be able to convert some third downs. The second drive of the game, we get a third down conversion to Mychal Rivera that gets called back by a pass interference penalty. The very next play, Terrelle makes a great throw and Brice Butler has an opportunity to make a play and wasn’t able to come up with it. Those are the types of plays that we have to be able to make, especially when you play a team of that caliber like we did in the Broncos.
Q: Is that as well as you’ve seen Terrelle throw from the pocket?
Coach Allen: Yeah, I thought there were some plays that I thought he threw the ball really well at times in the pocket. I still think they’re some plays out there that both myself and he wishes that we could have back. I think every day he’s continuing to be a work in progress and he’ll continue to improve the more opportunities he gets.
Q: How did [DJ] Hayden hold up? I think he was out there more than he was the first two games. Did he hold up well with that?
Coach Allen: He’s still learning. He still has a long way to go. I like the talent; I like the ability. I’d like to see him be more aggressive. I think as the plays begin to come his way and he begins to make a few more plays, I think you’ll see that confidence and aggressiveness come out a little bit more. You see it at times, but that’s really the challenge I have for him is to have that confidence in himself and be a little bit more aggressive as a football player.
Q: Given that Tracy Porter plays a couple different roles for you on defense, does losing him complicate things? I know that you had to kind of reshuffle midgame and move Mike [Jenkins] inside, I think. How does losing him, given the fact that he does so much, affect your preparation moving forward?
Coach Allen: We’ll see whether we’ve lost him or not. I haven’t seen him this morning yet so I’m not sure exactly how he’s doing. We’ll go through the protocol with him and we’ll evaluate him as he goes along this week. Obviously, if he’s unable to play, yeah it complicates some things a little bit and we’ll have to move some guys around and put some guys in different positions. This is the National Football League, guys are going to be called on to play multiple positions and fill multiple roles for the football team and they have to be able to perform that duty when they’re called on.
Q: With [David] Ausberry on the IR, did he have some kind of setback?
Coach Allen: No, he just didn’t really progress like we were wanting to. We were hopeful that he was going to be able to be back, but I don’t know if mentally he felt like it was responding the way that he wanted it and we needed it to. We just felt like we were kind of at a standstill with him, and we needed the spot, so we decided to go ahead and make the move.