Defensive coordinator Bresnahan Q & A


Chuck Bresnahan is in his second stint as the Raiders defensive coordinator. The Raiders made it to the Super Bowl with Bresnahan as their defensive coordinator in 2002.
On Friday night, Bresnahan spoke with the media for the second time since he was hired by the Raiders to replace John Marshall.
Here is the entire transcript:

This preseason, how do you evaluate it?
Progress, but slow. We’re taking the strides , the things you saw in the preseason were very vanilla and not a lot of playing time for the 1’s obviously. We’ve gotten the practice time and we’re excited to get out there and show what we’ve got in Denver.

Looking forward to playing all your starters?
That’s just preseason. Again, this preseason was unique because we’re all doing it right from the get-go in training camp. It’s the first chance we had with the players. But we’re excited. We’ve made progress and we’re right on track with where we need to be.

Did you change terminology too much, negating fact that you had 10 starters back?
There’s a lot of carryover. That’s something you have to do when you come in, you have to really watch that – especially when you don’t have an offseason. You try to keep things … There’s going to be new terminology and there’s going to be some new wrinkles, but again that’s part of the game. No matter what you do. Every year you change up and you try to improve your defense, so whether it’s the same coordinator or a new coordinator, we keep taking those strides forward. Like I said, I am excited to see where we’re at on Monday night.

What’s the biggest challenge Denver presents?
We’re going to say it every week: the first thing we have to do is stop the run. We have to be physical, and that’s what we’re trying to do. We’re trying to get out there and set the tone for the game on defense, and the primary thing is to shut the run game down and force the game to be one-dimensional. When you do that, you have the opportunity to do some special things.

First team did that pretty well, didn’t they?
Yeah, for the most part. We had a couple of little things we had to get ironed out, but they did a good job against the run. And now we’ve got to tie it all together an dplay 60 minutes of good football, with 11 guys playing the same defense. And no weak links. And some special things will happen.

What did DeMarcus Van Dyke learn in the preseason? Was it good to go against Larry Fitzgerald, etc.?
It’s excellent, especially when you don’t have an offseason. It’s getting thrown to wolves a little bit but … DVD has a tremendous amount of confidence in himself. Again, he’s made strides the entire preseason. And when you look at some of the catches made on him, he couldn’t be in better position. Now he’s just got to make a play on the ball and he’ll be fine. But he’s got a lot of confidence.

How much will it help to get Chris Johnson back?
You can never underestimate the importance of a veteran corner that has a lot of experience. And he brings an attitude to the field as well. We’re excited as heck to get him back.

In the brief time he played this preseason, it seemed as if Rolando McClain was a little more active than he was last season?
Yes, Rolando is going to be the heartbeat of our defense. We have a lot of veterans, but he is the guys that is going to be our signal-caller. He’s in the middle taking control and he’s excited to get going, and I am excited to see him play Monday night.

What were your impressions watching McClain’s rookie season on videotape
There is always going to be room for improvement, but I saw an incredibly talented young man that the sky if the limit as far as his future goes. The way he attacks the work week, in the meeting room, on the practice field, taking it even to the preseason games in the time that he played, and even off the field – I think he is a professional and I am excited to see the progress he makes in Year 2.

Do you expect Michael Huff to play a lot of nickel corner?
He’ll play in the slot, he’ll play our nickel corner, but again we have some things we’ll do. He has had a very productive preseason for the limited amount of time that he’s done.

What did you want to see out of Quentin Groves, who played more than any other starter in the preseason?
Well, he’s in a situation where he needs to gain experience at the linebacker position, so we played him in both base and the nickel. And it was really, really beneficial for him, because he got a lot of experience, lots of playing times, saw a lot of things he may not have seen yet in the limited experience he had last year.

It appears as if the defense is healthy right now?
No doubt. And you guys know how I am too. We’re going to play with who’s out there, and if someone does get nicked or banged up, then the next guy has to come in and pull his weight.

How does Trevor Scott look since his return from a knee injury?
Trevor has come back strong. He’s had a tremendous rehab, a very good offseason not being here, and he’s come back in tremendous shape. I am excited to see him fit in the mix as well.

Is there still another level for defensive end Matt Shaughnessy to attain?
Everybody’s got another level. It’s all up to the time and effort you put into it, and he’s a professional and works at his trade on the field and off the field. He puts in extra study so I am excited again – it sound repetitive – to see him and where he progresses.

Is Trevor Scott strictly a defensive end?
That’s something we won’t discuss outside the locker room, but you know that he gives you versatility. He’s comfortable where he’s at right now.

Follow me on Twitter: @corkonthenfl


Steve Corkran

  • Hagar the Horrible

    Monday’s priorities against the donkeys:

    1. Win the freaking coin toss. Seems small, but important. We loss four in preseason. Just win it!

    2. Establish the run game while giving up no freaking turnovers. Hold on to the rock, allow no strips.

    3. Get the “speeding, bullet receivers” into the game. Keep the passes to DHB short, to Ford where ever he wants, to Chaz high and inside where he can power the catch in, to Hagan where he can use his hands, etc.

    4. Stop their run and let the players “play to their pay,” Seymour, Kelly and Wimberly, among others.

    5. Get to the QB and inflict some pain.

    6. Score more points than the donkeys.

    They could do more but that would be OK for a starter.

  • DaTruth91

    i have one question for the day…

    who is this Giordano guy and why is he expected to see alot of playing time in the nickel..

    im not bashing the guy at all, but i just want to get some information on the guy

  • Write this down, first play from scrimmage will be long ball down the left side line, TD. Stunning the Donks. On KOR, the idiots atually think they can return it from 10yds back, hit forces fumble, Raiders waltz into EZ, and Donks fans leave in droves before first Quarter! This is Raider Football, glad to have it back!

  • Hagar the Horrible

    He a veteran with with six years of experience. Actually had four good years with the Colts, but then his production dropped big time while he played one year at Greenbay and his last year with Breez and company. Maybe he can revitalize himself in this new environment…lot of ex-raiders have.

  • downsouthraider

    Gotta get me a nap in before the game Monday night. East coast Raider fan. Can’t be looking bug-eyed at work Tuesday morning. Gonna set DVR just in case I can’t hang.

  • Down, same here, I got a 16 tomorrow, turn around to 7am on monday, and getting the game, we are so loyal!

  • “play to your pay”

    I like that

  • I have NFL mobile, surprised?

  • willflo818

    Seriously, Corkan get’s inconsistent too often! We don’t care what Bresnehan has to say, we want to know what practice looks like! How strong are we looking? Who will be playing what, and who won’t. How about telling us whether or not the Broncos Marcus Thomas will play? WE DEMAND info old man! Get with the times! Todays world wants things NOW! GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!!
    I’m going crazy thinking of how we’re gonna kill some ponies!!

  • No Mas Diamante

    dvrick Says:
    September 10th, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    I like swinging on butt hairs with the other dingleberries. It’s a lot of fun.

  • DaTruth91

    thanks hager…

  • Just Fire Baby

    Raider guy Says:
    September 10th, 2011 at 5:50 pm
    Has anyone brought up the connection between hue and the decline of Flacco? Hue went and then so did flacco’s stats/future/fan support



    Last year was EASILY Joe Flacco’s best regular season, and his postseason numbers under Hue the previous two years were very Jamarcus-esque.

    Not saying Flacco improved because Hue left, just saying that you need to go look at his stats and playoff appearance numbers from last season compared to his two years with Hue.

    You have it completely backwards, lol!!!

  • Just Fire Baby

    Anyways, got the Killians Red in the fridge, so victory is in the bag on Monday.

  • raiderzmaverick

    GREAT interview with Al Saunders. That’s what I’m thinking about the “Speed”. It ain’t only the straight line speed that matters. It’s more “quickness”. It’s not the 40 times out of pads that matters. At the combine they should run the 40 in pads, and show their mobility in that atmosphere.


  • raiderzmaverick

    Last year the % of balls caught compared to the # thrown their way:

    Hagan 56% caught (24 out of 43)
    Murphy 53% caught (41 out of 78)
    Ford 47% caught (25 out of 53)
    DHB 38% caught (26 out of 65)
    Schillens 56% (5 of 9)

    The ones that caught over 65% are the TE (who actually had quite a few longer passes) and the RBs.

    Our receivers need to be more consistent.

    But, for those who wonder why DHB is given a hard time is because of this. He gets so many targets, but caught not so many. This pre-season he was in the game for a lot of time, but didn’t catch that many (he did draw 2 PI penalties).

    This is why I trust Moore more also. I’ve seen him make catches and adjust to the throws that Campbell made, whereas we’d say to DHB “well, he could’ve caught that, but it’s a tough one”. and his defenders would say how it was a bad throw.

    This year DHB is more stable on his shorter routes. I hope they do that and get Moore and Ford on the longer routes.