Following Chiefs practice today in Kansas City, Todd Haley met with the media. Here are the highlights:
“Probably our best Friday. It was pretty good. We went indoors to just kind of get that noise level up and the tempo and precision on both sides. I think it was probably our best Friday as a whole.”
Does it make you cringe to say that you had another good practice on Friday given the prior results?
“Yes, I do, but you can’t think any other way. You really can’t. You’ve got to assume that good practices are eventually going to translate into good play. If you think any other way I think you’re asking for trouble. I know that’s how we gauge how a week has gone.”
So what made it a good practice?
“Tempo, guys were into it, enthusiasm, doing what they’re supposed to do, hustling to the ball on defense, doing all the things we’re asking them to do. Guys were sharp. You can tell when guys are into it. They were mentally into the practice.”
Is Kolby Smith ready to be a starter?
“I said earlier in the week, and I don’t think a couple of days changes it, but this is a major injury that he’s come back from and I think it would be unrealistic to believe that a guy after 12 months of surgery, rehab and all the things he’s done, would be expected to come in and be at the top of his game. He’s worked very hard; he’s practiced now four weeks, so I would say he’s getting better. But given the circumstances it’s probably asking too much to feel like this guy is going to be the best he’s going to be.”
Can you simulate your late game heroics to perhaps do it earlier in the game?
“We’ve been doing it and somehow we’ve got to have guys play – and not just offense but across the board – with the same sense of urgency that we have at the end of some of these games. We’ve got to talk about it, we’ve got to coach it, we’ve got to make them think about it. That’s what we can do. Try to have everybody think the same way: we have to think with a sense of urgency that every snap that each snap could be the difference in the game. Ultimately one, two, three or four will end being the difference in the game.”
On Wallace Gilberry:
“I think Wallace has really come a long way in our minds and probably in his mind. He’s probably not the prototypical size for the defense. He could have easily gotten lost in the shuffle but what he’s done is come to practice every day. He’s the epitome of the same guy every day. There is no up and down to him, he’s giving it everything he has and he’s getting better. He’s playing with better technique so I think he’s come a long way and put himself in the mix as a player we can depend on. I think he’s got to continue to work on all areas of his game and continue to play with that motor and energy that gives him an edge.”