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Doug Marrone: "We’ve got some good old-school fans"

Posted Aug 14, 2013

Bills head coach Doug Marrone told the media Wednesday night that quarterback Kevin Kolb will get the start Friday night against the Vikings, and named some other players who he doesn't expect to play in the game.

Head Coach Doug Marrone

Training Camp — August 14, 2013

Opening Statement:

Just to give everybody a heads up, I talked to the quarterbacks today after the walk-through and we’re going to go ahead and start Kevin Kolb at quarterback this week. Just the one thing I hope everyone understands is not to read in to this because we were very, very happy with EJ (Manuel)’s performance in the first game. Matter of fact, what we were looking at is probably if Kevin was healthy he was probably going to start the first game and EJ start this game. Again they’re in a competition and we just switched it. That’s where we are with the starting quarterback. Kiko Alonso didn’t practice today, he’s cleared by the trainers, the coaches want him out there, I’m resting him. I’m going to hold him out a couple of days, just to make sure we get him back. I don’t plan on him playing. I was happy to see Stevie Johnson out here today, he had good work. I’m not going to play him in this upcoming game, but again it was great to see him out there along with Brad Smith. That’s where we are as far as injuries.

Q: Does Brad Smith have a chance to play on Friday?
A: He might, I don’t know. That’s a thing where it’s just a matter of how you feel. I would say he’s questionable, I’m not sure yet.

Q: Is Mario Williams injured?
A: He keeps getting treatment to take care of his body. Again we’re just trying to be smart up and down, resting him for some time, just so he can make sure he just gets ready. Especially coming off this short week.

Q: What are you looking to see out of Kevin Kolb on Friday night?
A: I’m just looking for him to play. Play football. Nothing specifically. I just wanted to make sure he was healthy. I asked him if he was healthy and I said here we go. Obviously it’s a competition and we want to be equal. The same thing, I’m going to repeat it again, I told EJ, it’s not a reflection of how you played, actually it’s the opposite. We felt you played really well for a guy in his first NFL game.

Q: Do you have an idea when Stevie Johnson might be back for contact?
A: I think we’re probably going to get him back somewhere in the Washington week and if we don’t that’s ok. I think that’s just kind of the goal we’re pushing for.

Q: Any idea for how much time the first stringers will get in the game?
A: I’m going to stick with the same thing. I think the guys that are injured, what our philosophy is we kind of put them on a pitch count, I believe Scott Chandler will get some reps barring anything happening between now and tomorrow night, so you’ll see him in there. So those guys are put on what I call a pitch count. As far as everyone else who’s playing, as I said before I always tell them be ready to play the whole game because an injury and special teams if we have to put them back in there I don’t want them to say, “Well Coach took me out and had to put me back in there and I got injured”. We’re going to play our guys. Each player is different; we kind of take it individually on how much they have to play to make sure they get themselves ready. Some players are different than others.

Q: It’s still the preseason, but are you excited for your first home game?
A: It’ll be my first time on the home side of that stadium. I’ve been at that stadium before as a visiting coach, as a player and as a coach. It’s pretty awesome, everyone that knows me knows I'm a big history guy and I’m a little bit more old school at times, so you’ve got some good old school fans and a good old school stadium that has great views for everyone. It’s an exciting place, those guys get it going, so I’m excited about that for the players, but my focus will be on the field.

Q: If EJ had such a great first half, why not continue to start him?
A: Because it’s the same thing I said before, we’re in a competition. Just to reiterate, what the plan would have been going in was that Kevin probably would’ve started the first game if he wasn’t injured or hurt and EJ would have came in. Then EJ would have started this game but because of the injury, obviously EJ started and I’m going to give Kevin this start. You can’t call it a competition and then all of a sudden not have the quarterbacks getting those starts.

Q: What have you seen out of Zack Chibane and Nick Provo?
A: They’re doing a nice job. It’s their first camp; obviously it’s quite different for all the guys coming up. It’s something usually when you’re an upper classmen in college and you’re going to training camp and you start working against the other players, sometimes you don’t have to go as hard. I think when you come in from the college level, the one thing that I’ve learned is that you’re going to have to go 110 percent on every play or you’ll get beat and look bad. Those guys have been doing a nice job.

Q: Is Kevin behind at all due to the time he missed?
A: I think we’ll see that in the game more than anything else. I don’t want to go here and say ‘No he’s caught up,’ but Kevin has played a lot. He’s a seven-year vet. I asked him are your ready to do this, are you healthy, are you ready? He said yes no problem. I’m assuming that he’s ready to go.

Q: Biggest thing you’re looking for from Week One to Week Two game wise?
A: You’re looking for improvement and I think a lot of times what happens is because there’s so many different people at different times playing in the game, obviously they’re keeping score so the goal is to win, but at the same time from an individual standpoint you’re looking for separation. There’s a lot of other competition going on outside of just the quarterback. For spots on a roster, depth chart, special teams, things like that, so you’ll look for people to step up in those areas. You’re looking to see the progress in them. The coaching points that you’ve made and corrected, you’re making sure they don’t make those mistakes again.

Q: Who will start at receiver?
A: The same group that started last week. Again if we’re in three wide and four wide, we may start (more guys). If we start in any two-receiver sets it should be the same ones.

Q: With Jairus Byrd still not being there how does it affect what you’re doing with the safety position?

A: Again, I don’t know. Obviously we’re looking forward to Jairus coming in to camp. Obviously we respect his decision and what he has to do. Right now again our focus is on the players that are here and we’re looking forward to him coming back when that decision is made.