The Washington Commanders have held 9 training camp practices over the last two weeks. After each practice, players are made available to the media. Here are the pressers from the offensive side of the ball.
LIVE: WR Curtis Samuel speaks to the media after Thursday's practice https://t.co/2smzudtaO4— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) August 3, 2023
Eric Bieniemy’s offense:
Curtis Samuel is addressing the media. "Definitely excited" to play for Eric Bieniemy, and it's exactly what he expected it to be— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) August 3, 2023
"You want someone who's going to hard on you," Samuel said of Bieniemy, because it's coming from a good place and he wants to get the best out of you— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) August 3, 2023
I’m definitely excited. It is everything I expected it to be. Coach has high expectations for us, but we definitely have high expectations for ourselves. We just got to come out here and work every day. Work to understand the playbook so we can go out there and play fast. We love the game, so this is what we here for, we got to enjoy it.
Bieniemy’s coaching style:
It’s great. You want somebody that’s going to be hard on you just because you understand that it’s coming from a good place. They want the best out of you. Sometimes players need somebody that’s going to push them to the next level.
His role in the offense:
I won’t go into specifics about the game plan, but I just like the fact that I’m able to do multiple things. I bring a lot to different offenses that I’m involved in because I’m able to run the ball and receive the ball. I’m definitely just fortunate and grateful to be able to just play this game. I love it.
We understand how important the red zone is and we got to score points. We just put an emphasis on it because in this league, if you can’t score points, field goals ain’t going to get you wins. We got to understand, we got to score points.
Crazy in love with football:
Curtis Samuel w the Beyoncé reference before the big concert at FedEx Field - says he’s “crazy in love” w football— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) August 3, 2023
Curtis Samuel: "I'm definitely excited. Coach has high expectations, but we have high expectations of ourselves too."— George Wallace (@GWallaceWTOP) August 3, 2023
I don’t really pay too much attention to that. My goal and my focus is to be available, be out there on the field with my guys. When the ball is in my hand, I have to make something happen. What allows me to keep on going is not only just me doing things for myself, but I love the excitement that this game brings and the excitement that my teammates bring to me. When I go out there and make a play and we do it vice versa for each other, I’m just crazy in love with the game.
LIVE: OL Sam Cosmi speaks to the media after the first padded practice https://t.co/DU2Uui1waG— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) August 1, 2023
First day in pads:
Sam Cosmi is up next. On the first day of pads, he said everyone is "geeked up" about it. Everyone has that extra step, and everyone is excited about it— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) August 1, 2023
I mean, it’s the first day of pads. Like everybody’s geeked up. We all feel good and we’re firing off the ball. Everybody has the extra step today and it’s an exciting day for that reason. Putting pads on is real fun for sure.
Drill stood out today:
When we had our short yardage, goal line, run 10-play, run game period. Being able to know that the defense knows that we’re running the ball and we have to push through that. That’s just building the endurance, the strength and being united to be able to push through that and work through that. So, I thought those periods were pretty good today.
Switching to guard:
Cosmi said he feels comfortable at guard and really enjoying the physicality that comes with playing in the interior. Feels like it syncs up with his skill set— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) August 1, 2023
I really have grasped the position. I really feel comfortable at the position right now. I could be irreplaceable between guard and tackle if they need me to. But I’m really, really enjoying that inside being guard, physicality stuff. I think it fits my style of play better, and I’ve been enjoying the transition for sure.
When he realized he would be playing the guard position and how it changed his training:
I was talking to Coach [Ron] Rivera about it and, um I just told him, Hey, put me wherever you think I’m going to be the best in the world. He felt like that was the position for me and I trust in it and I’m feeling really good about it. When it came to the training aspect, I just worked on shorter sets, more physicality, faster hands when it comes to your punch. At tackle, you have a lot more space, a lot more room to battle. Guard, it’s like instant boom. It’s a brawl, so just getting used to that. But other than that, I mean, that was kind of the transition process.
Eric Bieniemy’s urgency in goal line situations:
I mean, you know, line up, see what you’re doing, call your calls, have enough time to do that and then also get the defense kind of flustered if you can. Not lining up straight or you coming off the ball real quick, that type of stuff. So that’s my thought process between him doing that and being disciplined is a big thing with EB for sure.
The offense using screens:
I mean, I’ve enjoyed the screen game that we have. I think it’s a really good package. You know, we have Saahdiq, me, Nick, athletic guys that can move out in space. Big guys. I think it’s going to be very beneficial for us in the season and opening up drives and doing that type of stuff. So, I’m a big fan of screens. Hearing that, knowing that, it’s big time.
Cosmi said he and Andrew Wylie have a great connection and they gel well. Him knowing the offense as well as he does helps the who offensive line grow— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) August 1, 2023
He’s been great, he’s a great addition. He’s been in this offense. Andrew is my guy, we’ve gelled. It’s a great connection between me and him. We’re on the same page and in this short amount of time, which is hard to do. So being able to have him and him knowing this offense like he does, it just helps us be better and grow.
Daron Payne mentioning his athleticism at the Guard position:
I feel more comfortable. I feel like I’m playing quick and, you know, Daron is Daron. He’s quick off the ball, he is shifty, he’s strong, he’s big, so being able to hear that from him is great. We’re just battling out there, so I think it’s fun to watch the battles that we have between each other. So yeah, I feel more comfortable at Guard, so I think that’s why I’m playing quicker especially in like pass and run and stuff like that.
Mental part of playing as an interior offensive lineman:
I love it. I mean, it’s physical. That’s why we play o-line. It’s the physicality, to inflict pain in others when they don’t want you to do that. I’ve really enjoyed it. Like I said, it really fits me and going forward, I just want to build on that and just make it something special.
Practices being more intense than years before:
Yeah, I mean this practice is definitely more intense. I think it’s good and the aspect is it’s really going to get us in shape for games. Like being able to do these long drives like we’re doing replicates drives that we have in the games and being able to push ourselves and have a lot of self-talk and doing all that. I mean it’s more physical and stuff like that. As the season goes, it’ll die down obviously, but right now we’re just building that endurance and all that stuff for the season. So, I think it’s great. I think it’s really beneficial for everyone.
LIVE: TE Cole Turner speaks to the media after Wednesday's practice https://t.co/Sy9fGOBvvR— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) August 2, 2023
The height in the tight end room:
We’re all interchangeable and it’s tough on the defense because we’re guys that can do a little bit of everything. You know, we’re trying to be savages out there, so just doing our part.
Eric Bieniemy’s offense:
We’re getting a lot more options this year as far as targets and we’re a lot more in involved in the pass game. So, you know, it’s fun and it’s exciting. Every single day there’s something new going in and a little creative, you know, something that we’re not used to before. It’s fun. It’s fun to be a part of this offense.
Differences from last year’s offense:
There’s definitely a new sense of urgency. A lot of guys are getting new opportunities to do new things and it’s something that every single person here is excited about. We’re all lucky to be a part of it. EB’s done a great job of leading us and trying to build a culture that is a winning culture and something that we all wanna be a part of.
Bieniemy telling the offense to get in the huddle faster:
In the meetings, he just brought the whole offense in and he is just talking about the sense of urgency, procedure and how important those little things are. Coach Ron and Coach EB, they talk all the time about how close the margin of error in this league. I think we had nine-coin flip games last year, so those type of little things are the things that’s are going to make the difference between us winning and losing this year. That’s just something they preach every single day. We just have to do our best as players to be mindful of it and take it and execute it on the field.
I think he’s grown a lot as a leader. First off last year, you know, Sam’s a pretty quiet guy by nature, but he’s really came in now, especially in camp and kind of take control of the offense and rallied the guys around him. It’s a little deja vu from when I was at the Senior Bowl with him because I remember at first, he was quiet and then started taking control of offense as the week went on. It’s good to see him grow.
If the intensity and environment changes when pads get on:
Yeah, I mean, like you said the pads come on and it’s a little more physical, a little more intense, more run game. We’ve been going up against each other for the last 10 days straight now, so guys start to get a little annoyed with each other but that’s part of the game and that’s what makes you better. You have to learn to deal with those kinds of situations because you have to keep your poise in games too. It gets you ready for the season.