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Philadelphia Eagles News

Offensive Coordinator Marty Mornhinweg

Opening Remarks: "Great challenge ahead of us with the Steelers. (They're) another 3-4 team. It's a much different style of 3-4. (Steelers defensive coordinator) Dick (LeBeau) does a heck of a job scheme-wise. They have excellent players over there. They rely on beating the man over them, they rely on that. And then, they rely on getting an extra guy schematically, whether it be in pass protection or run game, they get an extra guy there, and they have excellent players at all positions. Their linebacker corps, those four linebackers they have are strong. So we have a great challenge, and it's also a great opportunity for us."

On how much the offense has shown him over the past two weeks: "Our defense scored one last week for us, and that's a good thing. We're playing okay. We can play better. There is more out there for us. (We need to be) a little bit more consistent. We certainly have some rhythm. Our timing is pretty good. I'd like to run the football for a little bit better average than we have. The average looks a little bit lower than it is because of the kneel down, a couple of those. We're doing okay. Our mentality is to get better every day with our hard work and the preparation, and then things will usually work out pretty well."

On what he saw in the last couple of drives of the Dallas game that he didn't see earlier in the game: "We need to execute just a little bit better, and I have to do a little bit better job there as well. We'll win, hopefully we'll win two out of three of those types of game, and things will work out that way."

On whether he hopes to be more of a downfield offense this year: "Last year we were sixth in big plays. The year before that we were first, I believe, in big plays. You might want to double check me on that. So we've always been down the field or at least try to (be). I think we're right there."

On whether he would like to see RB Correll Buckhalter be more involved in the offense: "I didn't see the game like that. I'd always like to get Buck the ball just a little bit more. (RB) Brian [Westbrook] had, I believe, 18 carries, so I thought that we were right there. We could always go back and replay the game a little bit differently. But your point is, with Correll, he's a good runner. We would certainly like to do that."

On whether he's ever seen the kind of connection between a veteran quarterback and a rookie wide receiver that QB Donovan McNabb and WR DeSean Jackson have established: "Well, Donovan's playing – you remember before he got hurt about two years ago, his first five games were probably the best first five games I think anybody's ever had at that time. He's done this before. I guess, DeSean and him, with a rookie receiver, I'm not sure I've had a rookie receiver matchup with a quarterback like this. I'm trying to think. I don't think so."

On how he would compare DeSean to other first or second year receivers in the league: "He's ahead of most. He can get better at several things."

On whether DeSean is ahead because of his physical skills or his ability to grasp the offense: "Yeah, both, and it's even more than that. There are a lot of factors that go into how quick a young man can play, and the first thing is opportunity. He got his opportunity and has made the most of it up to this point. And then, he's a natural player. He's smart. He's got instincts. He normally does the right thing. He normally catches the ball pretty well. He'll get better at that. He's put all of that together here early. Now, the challenge is playing at a high level on a consistent basis every play, every game."

On how he feels about G Max Jean-Gilles' level of play if he has to step in for G Shawn Andrews this week: "We feel good about Max. Max is going to be a good player; he already is a good player. He's just going to get better. I think he has a good future. Reps, reps for him. I would expect him to play well if he needs to play."

On whether he cringed when DeSean dropped the ball at the one yard-line and how he handled the situation: "During the game I was almost sure that we were going to get the ball at the one. Okay, I'm there, and then how we handle it is private. What we say on the field and in the locker room, we like to keep that private. But he's already said publicly that it's not going to happen again, and I would trust that."

On whether he would have like to have seen more from TE L.J. Smith and the tight end position in general: "Some of that is me. I could do a better job there (of) getting L.J. the ball. With him, now, he needs to keep working and keep getting better every day and those things will happen, normally, pretty naturally for him."

On whether L.J. Smith was kept in to block: "We've come up against some guys, we have another one, who have exceptional pass rushers off the edge and so we've done a few things with him as of late and he's helped us in those ways a little bit more in the pass game. I will tell you that of the few catches that he had, he's getting the ball vertically. He's doing a pretty good job. He's doing a nice job in practice, so I think that will happen naturally, but that starts with me. I should be doing a better job there."

On whether he expects to have Andrews for the game this week: "Don't know. (It's) day to day."

On whether he expects WR Reggie Brown to play Sunday: "That's day to day as well. Reggie has been practicing, and Reggie looks good. There are no signs of the hamstring and little achilles problem that he's battled. He's looked good in practice up to now, and we'll see how he finishes this week."

On how much Brown will play if he's ready to go: "We'll see. It's a day-to-day situation still. We do have a plan and that may or may not be adjusted."

On the size of the linemen in a 3-4 scheme: "Yeah. Last week's were pretty good, too, and then this week's, they're big. Their nose (Casey Hampton) is very, very good. I remember him coming out of Texas several years ago, he's very good and he's big. So yeah, that is a situation that is in their favor just a little bit and they use it. They play towards that."

On what Brown will add to the receiving corps when he returns: "Our receiving corps has done a nice job up to date. However, we can get better. There is no question about that. We need to get better. Then, Reggie will fit right in, and you've seen how we've done it during the games. We've rolled guys through, and the fellows have done an excellent job up to date. Reggie will fit right in there, and then we'll just take it week to week and day to day with that if Reggie is available."

On whether he would play Buckhalter at fullback if FB Tony Hunt can't play: "That's a possibility. I would expect Tony to be ready, I think. We'll see how that goes. He's day to day still, but Correll does a nice job. He's played quite a bit of fullback for us, so he's helped us there as well and done really a nice job there."

On whether playing Dallas this past week has helped with preparations for the Steelers: "It helped with the 3-4 team, and we played them in the preseason as well. They're a little different schematically. They are more two gapped. I don't want to get too technical here, but they're more two gapped, more fire zone, more blitz, those types of things. More penetrating, maybe a touch more aggressive scheme wise. (Steelers SS Troy Polamalu) is a terrific player and that thing is built around a lot of guys because they have a lot of really good players, but (number) 43 is all over the field, and he's a big cog in that defense. So it's a little bit different there. They move around much, much more than a typical 3-4 team."

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