HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On the play of DB-Antoine Bethea) Thursday*, *
"I would agree with that. From the moment he set foot on this location, he's a guy you could tell was very instinctive right at the onset. He has great work habits. He is a real sure tackler. He just continues to get better each and every year. I would say there's no question about it, he's playing extremely well."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On DB-Antoine Bethea playing under the radar) Thursday, October 29, 2009
"I think so except for those people who play against us. They see him and see that he is an active player. He is a guy you certainly have to be aware of where he is located. He is one that you don't hear a whole lot of people mentioning his name week in and week out. He certainly has been playing some outstanding football."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On OL-Charlie Johnson's versatility and his humble beginnings) Thursday, October 29, 2009
"For a while there he had been a guy that had played so many positions for us because he's pretty versatile. He played some guard and some tackle, at both the right and left side. He was a guy that maybe no one knew a whole lot about just in terms of his skill level or what he's capable of doing. Now that he's got a home and a place where he's been able to work for an extended period of time, and he's been playing well. Oftentimes there's a window of opportunity there. I used to hear an old coach say, 'If there's a crack you better get in it'. I think Charlie had that window of opportunity, saw it, and seized it. I do think there was a point where he did elevate his game and began to play at a much higher level. That's what competition does to you. It will either polish you up or grind you down. In this particular case, I think he was polished up."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On the progression of WR-Austin Collie and what has impressed him) Thursday, October 29, 2009
"I would say his work habits. When it all boils down to it that's what really makes the difference. He is a guy to this point who has not shown a tendency to let up. He works extremely hard. It means something to him. He's very conscientious. With that kind of attitude particularly when you couple that with the physical gifts a guy can ascend and continue to get better. Here's the thing I think is important to know as well. With a young guy, in this league, it's rare that you have a string of good competitive games back to back to back. You do it without really working hard and studying your craft. Typically there has always been a lull in there somewhere. They (young players) level out or descend just a little bit because of the number of games that we play before they get their footing back. That's the thing we try to stress with him it's an every week thing. You have to go out and do it every single week. Oftentimes the opposition takes a look at you and sees what you do extremely well and they work at taking that away from you. You have to have a little bit more in your arsenal. That's what I think he's been able to do. He's not just done one thing well; he's been able to adjust. He not only blocks well, but he's also been able to catch the ball rather consistently. It's an every week thing so he has to go out and prove it again this week. When you look at the numbers that occur during the course of ballgames, we can see the groundwork being laid. He has indeed laid a lot of groundwork. He has a long way to go."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On the play of the 2009 rookie class and guys stepping up) Thursday, October 29, 2009
"We've been fortunate in that respect. I think overall it's kind of a culture. It's always been a prevailing attitude here that the standards are very high. You are here for a reason. You wouldn't be here if we didn't think you had the skill level to play. I think the guys (2009 rookie class) fight to measure up to that. I also think it's a great situation to be in when you are a young player that you have so many guys that play the position that know how to get ready to play a game and prepare properly as professionals. I think our young guys have a lot of quality individuals to emulate. That helps as well. The other thing is the veterans are willing to help them. It's not a situation in which a young guy comes in, has the ability and he gets ostracized because the veteran guy is afraid the young guy is going to take his job. It is quite the contrary here. We are about winning. They help each other a tremendous amount. They talk with each other. They (older players) give them great guidance."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On the play of DT Eric Foster and DB-Melvin Bullitt) Thursday,
"We feel blessed to have a group of guys that work hard and have played well. (Eric) Foster has done a lot of different things. He has certainly been a very important part of our team. He will continue to do so in the special teams, short yardage, plays the defensive line, and can play defensive end. He can play inside or out. (Melvin) Bullitt is the same way. Last year you look at his play, he stepped in and always seemed to have a knack for being in the right place at the right time. That has continued. He has played very well. None of these guys rest on what they've done previously. They look at every week as a brand new challenge. They attack it that way."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On DB-Bob Sanders' timing and if we should consider last week as his first game like pre-season) Thursday, October 29, 2009
"It's certainly not the pre-season. The fact of the matter is he has not had a lot of reps. A guy that has been out there that has the instincts he has, you'll see those things come fairly quickly. It's not going to take him a long time to get up to speed. He's looking at playing at the optimal level. With 31 plays, I'm not certain he has the opportunity to get in his groove. I do think that he looked good. I think he came through it extremely well. He's working at it this week. I would anticipate you'll see an even better showing from him."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On any updates for WR-Reggie Wayne) Thursday,
"None as of yet. I think it will take a couple more days."
HEAD COACH JIM CALDWELL (On any updates on DT-Eric Foster) Thursday,
"He too is going to take a couple of days. He's been running around out there a little bit but we'll see."