Head Coach Sean McVay – Training Camp Press Conference – August 17, 2017**
(On the last day of training camp and if he's pleased with where the group is at right now)
"I couldn't be more pleased with the way the guys competed, went about the meetings, and when we practiced every single day. It's been a great group to be around – both coaches and our players. I think in terms of what you what to get out of training camp, continuing to try to connect as a team, continue to get better in your offense and defense, and special teams systems, increase that continuity. We've gotten a lot of things accomplished. We're not where we want to be, but we're going in the right direction. That's what you feel good about. I think it's a real credit to our players. It's been a successful training camp. Anytime that you lose a great player like a (DE) Dominique Easley, that's unfortunate. But, I think guys have done a nice job not letting those things be a distraction and just worrying about what they can control and that's the way they prepare and approach every single day."
(On WR Sammy Watkins and if he likes where he is in the installation process)
"Yeah, I think he's done a nice job. Coach (Zac) Taylor spent a lot of extra time with him, our assistant receivers coach, and gotten him up to speed. He's a smart football player that understands the game. There's a little bit of carry-over from some of the things he's done in Buffalo over the last couple of years. I think in the last couple days, he's made a seamless transition. We know that we've got to increase the level of urgency to get him where we needs to be by the time the regular season rolls around. I'm looking forward to seeing him compete with these guys against Oakland on Saturday."
(On if he likes where QB Jared Goff is and if he's improving)
"Yeah, he is improving. I think when you really look at it, I was mentioning that the other day with these guys, being able to go against a great defense like we have with (Defensive Coordinator) Coach Wade (Phillips) and what those guys are doing. It presents a lot of problems and some good things to be able to go through with the quarterbacks. Anytime you try to create those competitive situations, it's excellent work really for all of our quarterbacks and Jared especially. He's improved and I think you learn from the good and the bad. If you're able to take it the right way, that's where you see good productive football in the days ahead."
(On today's reports that DT Aaron Donald's holdout may spill into the regular season and if he's concerned)
"Our approach is exactly the same, we're continuing to try and find a solution. He's a very important part of what we want to do. In the meantime, we've got a lot of great guys out here that are working hard and getting ready for this Oakland game and just approaching every single day with the situations that we're throwing at them. Whether that report is true or not, we're continuing to try to find a solution and we've got some time until that does come. We've got to always have contingency plans in place. But, like I said, that doesn't change our approach because we're still trying to find that solution to get Aaron here and be a part of what we're doing and if not we need to be ready to adjust."
(On if he treats Donald's absence like an injured player)
"That's a good question. I think what you look at it as – is he's a player that's important to us that isn't here. When you actually have an injured player like a Dominique Easley that you're counting on, you know he's not going to be able to participate. So, it is a little bit different, but like we've talked about over and over in the NFL, you've got to have contingency plans in place and be ready to adjust and react accordingly. I think our players have done a nice job in his absence and we're just taking it a day at a time right now."
(On how he feels about the right side of the offensive line at this point)
"Well, I think really everybody is a constant work in progress, because we always strive for that improvement. I think with our line as a whole, just continuing to get those guys to feel comfortable. That continuity that we talk about, that's so important. But, with the right side of the line, I feel good about (T) Rob Havenstein at right tackle and (G) Jamon Brown at right guard and that's what we're going to be right now and that's what we anticipate moving forward. I think those guys getting comfortable at those spots is the most important thing leading into that (Indianapolis Colts) 'Indy' game and that's the lineup that we've got right now. I think they've done a good job kind of having played tackle and guard and then going back to it, it's been good for us to evaluate and see that these are probably their most natural spots and that's important for us as coaches to put these guys in the best situations for them to have success."
(On how big it is that both Havenstein and Brown will get a lot of playing time Saturday)
"It's big. I think that experience, especially for younger players at any position, is extremely beneficial and that's something that we don't take lightly. We know we're going to get an opportunity to go against a great front and great defense in the Oakland Raiders. They've got some premiere players on that side of the football that will pose a great challenge and it's going to be a great evaluation tool for us."
(On how the addition of WR Sammy Watkins affects guys like WR Nelson Spruce and WR Paul McRoberts who are trying to make this team)
"Adding a player like (WR) Sammy (Watkins), where you know he's going to be a part of what you're trying to do – it certainly does change a little bit, but I think those guys, their mindset and their mentality is, 'I'm going to go out every single day and play to the best of my ability.' And that's what we preach to our players and at the end of the day, the nice thing about the NFL is, if you can play, whether it ends up being here, if injuries take place, you just never want to get too far ahead of yourself. But, I think what we preach to our players is always putting good stuff on tape, whether it is for us or for the rest of the league. With the uncertainty and the unpredictability with the injuries and different things that can occur, I think you get yourself caught up in worrying about things that you can't control and that's when it affects your ability to be your best. Those guys aren't players that do that and I think that's why you appreciate what they bring to this team right now."
(On if he ever took Donald not being here personally)
"I think initially, sometimes you could maybe – just your initial instincts could be to do that. But, spending some time with him when he was here for the mandatory minicamp, it definitely gave me a different perspective and an understanding that there's business elements to this. One of the things that I can appreciate about (DT) Aaron (Donald) is that he loves this game, he's all about the right stuff, he's one of those players that coaches love to work with. He's one of those players that are why you coach – to be around players like that, but you also respect and understand that this is how people make their living and those are things that I would never try to get in between in terms of the dynamic between the business side of it with some of the money and understanding the nuances. Certainly, it isn't something now that I have a better understanding that you take personally. It's something that both our organization and Aaron's people are trying to come to a solution and we're hopeful and we're still optimistic that we'll be able to get that done."
(On how he builds up the confidence of his players)
"I think in practice, when you're able to have some success you want to try to put them in good spots to have some success in those game-like situations. I thought (QB) Jared (Goff) being able to do some good things against the Chargers was beneficial for his confidence moving into the game against Dallas last week and then getting a chance to go against our defense where you're trying to create and mimic and emulate those looks you're able to learn from it. I think it's just about making sure that you're thorough and detailed with your preparation and your approach so that guys can feel confident going into the games and then ultimately having success is really what builds that confidence over the long haul."