Huskies Insider Blog

Quoting Chris Petersen after the Huskies' final open scrimmage

Here's what Washington coach Chris Petersen told reporters after the Huskies scrimmaged earlier today at Husky Stadium.

(On the scrimmage) “Always put in a tough position as the head coach, because you see some really good things out of your defense for most of it, and all of a sudden, there goes a run or two up the middle and you kind of see who’s in there and that can be concerning. Then you get in the red zone and you get smashed a little bit and that’s concerning. We got a lot of good stuff on tape that we’ll be able to analyze and clean up and go from there. It’s always hard for me to answer these right afterward. I know a lot of guys got some good work.”

(On the running backs) “I think we’re starting to see some things by the running backs. Again, sort itself out, in terms of this is our guy or not – I see it by committee. And we’re going to need all those guys. We’ve got to run the ball, we’ve got to run it well. You’ve got picture-perfect weather out here and they were all looking like they were playing in the desert, about 115, looking for the other guy to come in. so we’re going to need them all.”

(On offensive improvement) “I thought there was some improvement there. I thought we ran the ball a little better. Less turnovers. That was encouraging. Work in progress there. We’ll see.”

(On balancing reps for QBs) “What we really like … I think we had a little over 100 reps. For those guys we’d like to have about 200 reps. But we just can’t do it with everybody else. We’re just trying to get those guys as many reps as we can, and balanced, if we can sort it out we will. They just all need more reps.”

(More on the QBs) “You think about it. We don’t have a starter. We’re trying to figure that out. Nobody’s started here, so we’re trying to give everybody an equal chance. When you have that one guy, he’s going to even get more of the reps. It’s easier being a first-team quarterback than a second or third. You’re a second right guard, you’re going to get your fair share of reps … We’ve kind of watered it down, but we’re going to have to sort some stuff out here throughout this next week.”

(On difficulty of QB decision) “You can make a case for all those guys. You really can. It’s probably going to be splitting hairs when it comes down to it, really. We’ve watched them in spring, we’ve watched them out here. Nobody’s really taken a commanding lead. So we’ll figure that out. But it’s always work in progress. Whoever that guy is in that first game doesn’t mean that’s his deal to go with. It’s always compete, and you’ve got to perform. You’ve got to earn your right to stay in there. That being said, we don’t want anybody looking over their shoulder and those things, so it’s a fine balance.”

(More on QBs) “I think we’re making fairly decent progress with our decision-making. I think the accuracy definitely needs to improve.”

(Will you announce decision when you know, or let it go up to game day?) “We haven’t really got that far. It won’t be (a surprise) for those guys, and we’re not really trying to keep it a secret. I don’t think it gives us some huge advantage to (not) tell the opponent who the guy is. We’re just still trying to figure it out.”

(More on QBs) “Like I said, whoever’s going to be the guy is going to go and he’s going to get his first opportunity and hopefully does some good things, and if he can’t get it done, we’ll try somebody else.”

(On QB confidence) “This game is such a game of confidence. It doesn’t mean if they make a bad pass or two that they’re out. They’re going tog et a chance to compete and play. I think that goes with any position, but certainly that quarterback position, toughest position in all of sports in my opinion. They’ve got to have a chance to get some things going and so we don’t want to just have them looking over their shoulder the whole time.”

(Early offensive struggles due to youth or good defense?) “It’s probably a combination. I think we’ve got some decent players over there on defense that have made some good plays, and I think there’s some questionable decisions coupled with some questionable accuracy. Again, it’s not all on the quarterbacks. We’ve got some young receivers that are in there that need to perform better. We’re all in this together.”

(On QB improvement since spring) “I think they have a better command, have a better feel for what’s going on. I think the big thing is we’ve got to find a guy that, first and foremost, (doesn’t) hurt our team and our defense. We can’t turn the ball over. We might not be making a bunch of plays, but we can’t make those negative plays there first and foremost. And then we can see if we can get something going and get some guys making some plays back there. But that’s the main thing. You can’t hand the game to somebody because the quarterback can’t do what we need him to do.”

(On Kasen Williams’ progression back from injury) “He’s still a work in progress. Got a lot of those guys. We thought it would be like that. He had a severe, severe injury. He’s done a great job of powering through it. I think some of that’s going to come with confidence with him as well, get full confidence in that ankle. Maybe in a week, two weeks, a month, I don’t know, we’ll see. He’ll keep grinding.”

(On if there's change from "camp" to in-season day-to-day yet) “No. It’s the same. It’ll be the same this week. We've still got a lot of work to do and then next week we’ll kind of get into our game week. So it’s a little modified version. They’ll see what a game week looks like. I still see us in camp mode, to tell you the truth. We got a lot of work to do. Just honing in on that game mode.”

(On starting jobs still being up in the air) “Well, yeah, we’re trying to find the best guys we can find and we’re trying to build depth. We all know if we put 11 guys out there today, it’s not going to be the same guys in two to three weeks. That just doesn’t happen. We used to say you needed 44 guys to have a good chance and it’s probably more than that, in fact, you have to factor in the special teams and all of those things with how physical this team and game is these days.”

(Is anyone emerging at RB?) “You could see flashes of all those guys doing some good things. I think Dwayne (Washington) has some very good speed, is explosive. I like how Jesse (Callier) was slithering in there and finding some good creases. (Deontae) Coop(er) did some things in there and some of the young guys so you guys kind of saw what we saw. We don’t take them to the ground in practice for the most part.”

(On other position battles) “I think our secondary is pretty interesting. What’s going on back there with some of the guys that have been here and some of our young kids. I think of it all being pretty heated because I just don’t think of it even in our linebackers. Timu and Shaq, having played a lot, but those other guys need to be nipping at their heels. Again, what a physical position that is. Hopefully you keep your fingers crossed and they can stay healthy, but I count on them not in terms of we just got to have that depth ready to go.”