Rams Head Coach Sean McVay**– Rams-Cowboys Postgame Availability – August 12, 2017
(On if the game went by quickly)
"It did, it went by really quickly. The one thing that I'm going to have to continue to get used to is the transition in between offensive series where you're kind of getting some thoughts together but still being involved with what's going on with defense and special teams. But what you feel really great about is having great leaders like (defensive coordinator) Wade Phillips and (special teams coordinator) John Fassel to be able to run those units. They kind of seamlessly operate, but I think it's still important for me to be mindful of being in control of those game situations and what's going on and how that affects our decision making. But we'll take the win however we can get it. Certainly there's going to be a lot of things that we need to clean up, but I thought it was a great opportunity to get out in front of our fans and come away with a win and the atmosphere was outstanding."
(On QB Jared Goff capitalizing on the fumbled punt)
"I think that's huge. Really other than points, turnovers end up being the biggest indicator of wins and losses if you just look at the stats for the last handful of years. Specifically, offensively, we have to do a way better job of taking care of the ball. We only lost one tonight, but we put in on the ground way too many times. Fortunately, the red zone touchdown that we had ended up with (WR) Cooper Kupp falling on that fumble. There were some good things to take away. I thought our defense flew around and I think our special teams units continue to do a nice job. We have to be careful of avoiding the penalties both offensively and on special teams. But like I said, we'll take the win however way we can get it."
(On what he thought of Goff's performance)
"I thought he did a nice job. When you really look at the limited amount of snaps and plays that he did have. The first throw of the game we came out with a quick gain and Dallas did a good job of matching it but that's where we have to be patient and ready to sit on our back foot and let (WR) Robert Woods see that throw and get a completion play there. But did a great job on the keeper where he changed the launch point and found Cooper Kupp on the crossing route after we got the turnover from our special teams. And then really the other two completions, the one to Robert Woods on third-down in the red zone and then (RB) Todd (Gurley) on the check down where they did a good job on third-and-long playing deep to short, found his check down and with a back like Todd, you feel good about his opportunity to be able to move the chains in some of those situations."
(On is he saw from Goff what he hoped to see)
"I think so. I think the one thing that you feel good about with him is he comes to you during the game and says, 'I wish I had that first play back,' where you're able to kind of let Robert (Woods) see that throw and get a completion right off the bat. But those are the kind of expectations that we have for him and we expect him to have that for himself and he does. We know that there are always things that we can do a little bit better, myself included and I think it provides a great opportunity for us to learn and move forward to the Raiders next week."
(On what he said to RB Justin Davis after the fumble)
"I think he was clearly disappointed. That was a big time turnover that we had down in the red zone. But you can see the explosiveness that Justin (Davis) does have. I just told him, I said, 'Hey, let's be mindful of taking better care of the football, we're going to give you an opportunity and more interested now in seeing how you respond, not about what just happened.' I thought he did a good job responding. He broke out that 30-plus yard run at the beginning of the second half. You can feel that he's a great back with good explosion, good change of pace, he's very productive in the receiving game as well, but we certainly have to do a better job as a running backs group as a whole taking better care of the football. I know he'll be one of those guys that we'll really focus on here in this next week."
(On if those are the instincts he has come to expect from WR Cooper Kupp)
"Yeah, I think he's one of those players that just seems to always be in the right spot. I think that's a credit to his football IQ and his level of urgency when he recognized what was going on and it ended up being the difference in us winning and losing that football game tonight. He's going to continue to improve. Very smart, conscientious player like you guys have heard me say. We feel fortunate to have Cooper on our team."
(On if the fumbles are a result of the lack of hitting in training camp)
"I think that's a great point. You always want to be mindful of how you practice. You want to try to mimic and emulate those game-like situations as much as possible without the risk of injury. And that's sometimes the thing that you suffer from is when you are able to get tackled with live hits, ball gets a little bit loose when you're not as conscientious about it. Those are things that I as a coach have to do a better job of finding ways to creatively implement a more structured environment so that it can be something that we do a better job with especially offensively."
(On if he got the chance to meet with WR Sammy Watkins today)
"I did. He just got in where his flight got in and it gave us a chance to spend a little bit of time together pregame. A really impressive person. I got a chance to talk to him. There's a lot of similar people that we've crossed paths with that have reached out to me since we acquired him and can't say enough good things about him. Was really impressed with the way that he carried himself. Can't wait to go to work and like we've said, he's a special player and we're excited about adding him to our offense."
(On if a month is enough time to get Watkins settled in)
"I think you don't want to take away from the offseason program and what training camp has already entailed. But I think we just have to have a bigger level of urgency then maybe you would with somebody else when you have month to get ready for that September 10 date. I know that he's a guy that's excited about getting to learn it and immediately get immersed in the system. I think that you just make sure that you pay a little closer attention. We've got a couple receiver coaches with Eric Yarber, who does an excellent job and then we've got an assistant in Zac Taylor who's a great coach too. They'll be able to split up those duties and maybe one of them will be able to pay closer attention in trying to get Sammy up to speed. That's going to be an important part of what we're doing."
(On if he expects Goff to get more reps as the exhibition season moves along)
"Yeah, typically what our plan would be is ideally 6-10 or a scoring drive which we were able to do tonight and next week we'll probably play through a series into the second quarter and then that third preseason game will offer us an opportunity as a first team offense to play a first half and maybe a series into the third quarter. Those will be the things that we'll discuss and monitor as a coaching staff but the goal is to get him more work through those first three weeks as we progress."
(On why he didn't have Goff play more)
"I think because we were mindful of getting some of the veteran offensive lineman out. We wanted to make sure we got Todd some touches but got him out. Wanted to him to play with guys that we anticipate him playing with by the time the regular season rolls around. We're all a product of our previous experiences. My experience in Washington being with (Head) Coach (Jay) Gruden, that was the plan that we had and it seemed to work out pretty well as far as what you had with those guys that are your starters. That's why we went about it the way we did tonight."
(On his initial impressions about his offensive line)
"Until you get a chance to really go back and look at the film because of all five and the continuity upfront, it's really difficult to say. We had a couple runs where it seemed like they got into our backfield, but I think when you've looked at that group as a whole, feel really good about some of those players and now it's about gelling together. I think when you look at (RG) Jamon Brown and (RT) Rob Havenstein having gone back and forth between guard and tackle. I feel like Rob's really settling in nice at that tackle position and Jamon's will be our right guard right now unless something changes. I think it's about those guys getting more and more comfortable. They're talented players, but they're still very young in terms of their experience. And then when you look at the left side, these are veteran players that have never played together. So it's about them being able to establish that continuity with those five. We feel very good about them and we know that, like anybody else on this team, we have room for improvement but I think we have a chance to be pretty good upfront with those guys."
Rams QB Jared Goff – Rams-Cowboys Postgame Availability – August 12, 2017**
(On if he got a lot out of the limited snaps he had tonight)
"Yeah, I was happy with what we were able to, fortunately, do there with the muffed punt and finish off that drive. You don't design it to go that way, but sometimes the ball bounces your way and we took advantage of it."
(On how he thinks he handled himself in the game)
"I was happy. That first throw I would like to have back. We talked about it on the sideline, I would have had a perfect night with a four-for-four, but it's a good one to learn from. I was happy, like I said, with the way we finished."
(On how things went with Head Coach Sean McVay as the play caller)
"It was great. It was really good. I was talking with (QB) Dan (Orlovsky) and (QB) Sean Mannion about it all night. Just the way he verbalizes things, the way he's able to communicate with us and give us little tips in the play call and stuff to remember, little reminders is so helpful and it was really good."
(On his reaction to the trade for WR Sammy Watkins)
"We were in meetings and we break meetings and I look at my phone – like 50 text messages like, 'Sammy Watkins. Sammy Watkins.' I was like, 'What? What happened?' Obviously we got him and you hate to lose a guy like (Former Rams CB) E.J. (Gaines). I think E.J. is a special player and a really special teammate. I think he was a really good guy, so you hate to lose him. But, we're excited about Sammy and excited to see what he can do."
(On the weapons he has with the addition of Watkins)
"Yeah, absolutely. Like you said, you start stacking guys like that – you start building a pretty good roster on the perimeter there. Again, I'm excited to see what he can do along with the other guys."
(On RB Justin Davis' performance)
"Yeah, he had a good game. His return to the (Los Angeles Memorial) Coliseum I guess, right? I thought he ran well. I thought he ran really well and I think the best part of it was that he had that fumble and came back and kept running really, really well and that's good to see. You want to have a guy with short memory like that and he did a good job. I thought (RB) Todd (Gurley) did a good job for the limited plays he had as well."
(On if he views this as a building block heading into the regular season)
"Yeah, I think it's just like any other game – you take good things from it, you take bad things from it and you just try to learn from it and get better. Especially preseason one, our first time back out there it's a bunch of fumbles. We have to eliminate that if we want to continue to be good and be good September 10th against the Colts, but I think there was a lot of good things that we can take away from it and a lot of things to learn from for sure."
(On what he was trying to focus on from the sidelines once his playing time was over)
"I was trying to do my best to help Sean (Mannion) and then just try to talk to the guys, keep those guys encouraged, keep their heads up and just try to do my job."
(On if he's happy where he is right now)
"Yeah, we went out and scored on the first drive. That's what we're supposed to do. Well, I guess one and a half, right? We had that punt and again, don't like to start it that way, but the ball bounced our way, we got lucky and took advantage of it. Yeah, if my job is to take us down the field and score and we did that on our first drive today, so I was happy with it. Again, the second drive, I guess."
(On what he thinks the process is going to be like with integrating Watkins into the offense)
"He's obviously a weapon. His track record speaks for itself and what he's able to do. I think he's a guy who can stretch the field. I think that's what we get from him, obviously right away. I also think he's not only a really good guy, but works hard – just from what I've gathered so far. He's excited to be here. He's excited to get to work, and just briefly talking with him over the phone and on the sideline really quickly, just getting a feel for him – he seems like a really determined guy and excited about a fresh start."
(On if building chemistry with Watkins will be a big adjustment)
"It won't be an adjustment. It'll take a couple days throwing to him, but it's just like anybody else that's a new player."
RB Todd Gurley – Rams-Cowboys Postgame Availability – August 12, 2017**
(On how he's feeling at this point)
"I'm feeling good man. Obviously, it's hard to get started with just a couple plays, but just to be out there, just get the goosebumps off and be with the offense. It was good to be out there watching guys. Just watching guys like (WR Nelson) Spruce, man everything's good."
(On what he was personally looking to accomplish tonight)
"Obviously, the first thing you want to go out there and execute, put some points on the board. We were able to do that, I mean, not the way we wanted to, but we're still happy. We're excited."
(On if WR Sammy Watkins coming to the team takes some pressure off of him)
"Well, with him and (WR Nelson) Spruce out there, it will take a lot of pressure off of me. I'm just happy to have those additions to my team and he's a playmaker."
RB Justin Davis – Rams-Cowboys Postgame Availability – August 12, 2017 **
(On how playing in the Coliseum as a pro is different than when we played at USC)
"Oh man, when I walked in the locker room, it was kind of surreal at first because you've got everything covered up and its different colors and what not, but at the end of the day, it's home for me. When I got out on the grass, all the memories started to come back and it just felt like home. I love to be here."
(On what he expects this team will bring energy-wise)
"Going forward, it's going to be a whole lot of things that we're going to do that will break the defense down in coverage. Coach McVay, he's a very smart guy. He knows how to take advantage of match-ups and we just listen to what he says, because it's always going to be right. He puts us in a great position going forward and we're going to turn a lot of heads."
(On how he felt adjusting to the speed of the game tonight)
"Well, my first NFL game it was – I made a couple mistakes here and there, but all that matters is how I bounce back and how I can eliminate those mistakes in the future, because it's different than college. It's a whole lot different. It's more intense, faster, players are smarter. That's just me, I've got to adjust to that and I've got to do it quicker than slower. So just going forward, I'm going to look back at the mistakes and try to avoid them and just do better next time."
Rams WR Cooper Kupp – Rams-Cowboys Postgame Availability – August 12, 2017**
(On emotions going out there for his first game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and the first drive)
"It was fun, things were moving fast. I think when you hear about the first drive, everything is kind of just moving quick and thinking about a lot of things, and knowing it would calm down a little bit. Just getting into the groove of the game. It was fun. I had a great time. You know this, but obviously, like with everything you do, there's a lot to go back and look at. I even know before watching the film there's a lot of stuff that I need to improve on. So, I'm excited to be able to go back and get to work on that."
(On playing for Head Coach Sean McVay for the first time and the energy he's been able to bring to the offense)
"It's incredible, very smart coach one of the smartest I've played under and with that he just brings this sense of calming that think any head coach wants to be able to exude; just even keel. And guys what to play for him. I step on the field and I want to play for him and that's a huge thing, I think, and very fortunate to be here."
(On feeling like he was the only player going for the ball in the end zone and if he thought it would be called dead)
"Well afterwards, I thought that they were…I think they did review it, but I thought it was a close call. Actually, I was able to get a glimpse of it and it was just kind of a bang, bang play. If there's any doubt you would still want to be on the ball."
(On how he feels he'll fit alongside WR Sammy Watkins and what was his thoughts when he heard about the trade)
"I can't wait to get on the field with him. He's an incredible athlete, incredible football player. Got to talk with him a little bit together on the sideline and he's really excited about being able to step out on the field and play together. I think the mix of receivers we have in the room is awesome and there's competition, but it's healthy competition – challenging each other and pushing each other to be the best that we can be. I'm excited about that."