Philadelphia Eagles News

Offensive Coordinator Marty Mornhinweg

Opening remarks: "We are right in the middle of a game-week simulation. So it's important for players and coaches, we're going to simulate a game-week as best as possible. It won't be quite the same because we're still in training camp mentality, there's still a lot of hard work left to do. And then, during the season you know that mentality with the players that it's not going to get easier, it's only going to get harder. And if we have that mentality then we'll be in good shape."

On C Jason Kelce working with the ones: "No decision has been made. There is great competition there. Kelce has sort of earned the opportunity to do this for a period of time and then we will make decisions as we go. Both are playing at a very high level right now and both are very different. You have a veteran with some great experience that is playing very well, and then you have a rookie that shows an awful lot of talent that has many reps to go through to get to a certain point where we need him to be able to win a ball game. That's where we're at there. So Jason has sort of earned this opportunity to get some playing time and try to get better."

On his thoughts about why Kelce has earned the opportunity to start: "Well, it's not over, there's competition. You have to allow an opportunity for a player to see in many cases what that player can do. And we've done it with many different positions in the past, as you know, and sometimes the player grabs that opportunity and gets better daily. Sometimes it takes a little longer than that, but that's where we're at right now."

On what attributes he looks for in a center: "Well, the best player. We're looking for the best five players. And so, all of that decision making process, that's the goal right there. And really, you're looking at the seven, eight, nine best players and how you would play them in different scenarios depending on if somebody got nicked. So an awful lot of thought goes into that and an awful lot of thought goes into how you're going to play a certain player in a preseason game. And you're looking for some specific things in many cases out of that player. Can he do this? Can he do that? I don't want to get too specific, so you would make sure that those plays would get called to make sure that he could do those types of things."

On whether they have always looked at Kelce as a potential starter dating back to draft day: "Well, I will tell you that everybody in this building liked Jason Kelce when he was drafted and thought he had a great opportunity to be a good player. Some players can play very earlier, others make that big jump between their first and second year, especially with a great offseason, other great players make that jump between their second and third year. We've seen that happen on many occasions. So everybody evolves at just a little bit different of a pace."

On whether Kelce is a prototypical "Howard Mudd" center: "I think we're going a little deep there on that. We're looking for the best five players, and then really the top seven to eight are very, very important as you know we've experienced that."

On whether it is harder to start at center as a rookie than right guard: "It depends what style and system, those types of things, but there's always exceptions…the closer you are to the ball, it's a little harder, but there's always exceptions with that."

On his thoughts about QB Mike Kafka's development and the second string quarterback competition: "Well, I will tell you this, (QB Vince Young) has done an outstanding job with many things. He's right in the middle of the hard work, and it takes a lot of hard work especially with this system, in all that preparation. So he's right in the middle there. He's done some excellent things on the field. Mike Kafka really has…he did a fine job last year; he made a big jump because he did a lot of hard work in the offseason without us. He did a lot of hard work on his own and he's done some excellent things on the field as well. So we'll see how quickly Vince is coming and that's a hard thing in this system without an offseason. So he's doing everything possible to get himself ready to play at a high level and in a late game. And (Quarterbacks coach) Doug (Pederson) is working hard, hard, hard on that. And so, I would suspect that Vince is going to expedite this thing pretty good."

On whether RB Dion Lewis has a history of ball security issues: "No. Here's the situation and we can discuss it and talk about it, but sometimes they have to go through it. Ball security is different in the NFL, it's just different. You have the best players from every college team, you have some excellent veterans and they've been stripping balls their whole life and they've become very, very good at it. And so, you may have one or two players that you're playing against in any particular college game that are excellent at it.

"In this league you have virtually every position is an expert at stripping the ball and work daily on it. So it's different in this league and in some cases a player has to learn the hard way. And then, hopefully it happens very rarely from this point on. All training camp he did an excellent job keeping the ball off the ground with very few exceptions, it wasn't in a team situation, and it was ball handling with a new play or something. So I have great confidence in him in ball security."

On what he views WR DeSean Jackson's most important attribute: "Well, yards-per-catch is a huge correlation to winning. You have turnovers and there are some other things too, but yards-per-catch is way up there. And I think that's a tribute to his skill and ability. He's excellent in the yards-per-catch area and that's a plus for our team."

On what he looks for as a coordinator in terms of a number one wide receiver: "What makes a number one? I've never thought about that, really. I've never thought about a number one or a number two. Now I do think about role type players, but if a man is good enough to have consistent high level of play then he's good enough to be your starter and you play to his strengths. I think so highly about (WR) Jeremy Maclin. I think he is so underrated. I believe it was 10 touchdowns, the guy is a touchdown maker, I mean he catches touchdowns. He's a big, strong, physical guy, I think highly of Jeremy. So I think we have two top players at the receiver spot and more than that really, I think there are more guys on our football team that could be a starting type of a receiver."

On whether QB Michael Vick's competitiveness gets the best of him in certain situations: "I put him in a couple bad spots. I need to do a better job there. And you know Mike, the kid's character; he would always stand up and take responsibility. Look, it's my responsibility to get points on the board and to put him in good spots and all of those things that go into a football game, that's my responsibility. And so, I'll do better next time, and then when he's in those spots he'll do better next time. It shows his character when he steps up and takes responsibility even when it's not his."

On Vick throwing into double coverage: "He'd like to have a couple of those back. We've discussed that and I'll put him in a little bit of a better spot next time."

On whether T King Dunlap is the starting right tackle heading into the season opener: "We'll see, but it was a great sign that King played at a high level, for the most part, there were a couple things that he could get better at real quick, easily correctible and quickly correctible, but that was a good thing for our football team and for King. And then, we'll see with (T) Winston (Justice). When he's ready we'll see. He's not quite ready yet, I think he's getting a little bit closer as the days go by here."

On whether G/T Todd Herremans has the ability to play RT: "Todd's so versatile, is that your question? Yeah, Todd's so versatile that he could play about anywhere on the line and do a fine job. He has before."

On whether he has a timetable as to when he would like to solidify the starting offensive line group: "As earliest as possible, sometimes it's not possible to be able to make the decision on which the top five, seven, nine or more players are. And they have to get enough plays so you can get a good evaluation on the player. So that's where we're at right now. Certainly would have liked it to get done in the offseason but it's not. We've been through this before, and I think we'll be just fine when those decisions are made at any point. I think we'll be just fine."

On whether he needs to see Justice play in a game before making him the starter: "For him to play or start? I mean, those are two different things. It would be the right thing to do would be to see him play to see if (he is ready). However, our training staff is so good at understanding and then communicating when the player is ready to play in a game. Now Winston has experience and all those types of things. We'll make those decisions as we go there. I think we still have plenty of time and plenty of reps and all those types of things."

On whether it would be a concern to have two rookies starting side-by-side in G Danny Watkins and C Jason Kelce: "That's right. We've certainly discussed that; if they're the right type of players than there's absolutely no problem at all. (We are) on the road in domes the first two games, all those things. And so, that's why we're where we are right now. We're getting great evaluations. Jason Kelce has a great opportunity here. (C) Jamaal (Jackson) is playing at a high level. So it's really a good thing for our ball club right now with those two players."

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