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Published on 09/24/2008 at Wed Sep 24 19:01.
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Here’s a transcript from this morning’s press conference with Jay Cutler & Mike Shanahan. Brandon Marshall will meet with the media tomorrow at noon.

Head Coach Mike Shanahan

On playing the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium

“You can look at our history that shows how tough those games have been. We haven’t faired very well. Our football team is well aware of what it is like to play at Arrowhead. Hopefully we are ready for it.”

On placing C Tom Nalen on injured reserve

“It is always hard to lose a great player and a great leader. I’ve been with Tommy right from the start, and he is everything you look for in a person and in a player. It is tough to see a guy like that be injured like he has and go through the rehab he has gone through. If there is anybody that can play with pain, it is him. When he can’t play you know it is very serious.”

On if signing C Casey Wiegmann in the offseason had anything to do with Nalen’s health

“To be honest with you, we were not really aware of any setback that Tom had. We thought Tom would be 100 percent. Casey (Wiegmann) was such a great player from Kansas City for so many years and we were just shocked that he was on the street. When we saw that he was on the street, we just tried to gobble him up as quickly as we could knowing that any injury is possible during the season.”

On the Chiefs having a young team as well as the Broncos

“I am really not sure to be honest with you. I am not sure how they went about it. I just know that we have been very fortunate to have many of our young players step up and play and hopefully they keep it up. If you take a look at (T) Ryan Clady, he is playing like a vet. (T) Ryan Harris, even though he is a second-year player with that back surgery last year, to come back and play the way he has. A guy like (WR) Eddie Royal is playing well on offense and special teams. (FBs) Peyton Hillis and Spencer Larsen both at the fullback position. We have had a couple young guys play well on special teams. Then you get a guy like (CB) Jack Williams who comes in and proves that he can play in the preseason no only at the corner position but on special teams as well. (LB) Wesley Woodyard comes in and he is probably one of our top special teams players that we have. He will eventually be a starter at linebacker in the National Football League. You can take guys like (P) Brett Kern and (T) Tyler Polumbus, a couple free agents that had draftable grades and we were able to get them as free agents instead of the draft. I feel good that these guys are not only apart of your 53 but also a part of your 45 that dress up on game day.”

On the defensive scheme

“You can’t fall into that trap. There are teams that are playing that are 0-3 that are going to be winning this weekend. We don’t want to be one of those teams this weekend, especially on the road, that goes in and all the sudden get beat. Kansas City really had the game won-New England had some penalties and some missed opportunities. They had an excellent chance to put that game away. I think our football team, even though we are young, hopefully we have enough veterans to let these young guys know that this is the National Football League and if you are not ready you are going to get beat.”

On newly acquired S Vernon Fox

“We just got him in. He was the special teams player of the year at Detroit. He played at Washington and he has a number of starts over the last couple of years. I am very impressed with the way he has handled himself as a person and how he played on special teams. Now we will get a chance to see first hand how he fits into our system. We will try to get him ready to play as quickly as we can.”

On S Josh Barrett playing at some point this year

“There is always a possibility. He is on the practice squad along with Roderick Rogers, but guys have to be activated and for that to happen guys have to be put down. If somebody gets hurt, we have some football players in a lot of different positions depending on the injury factor and that is why you have eight guys on the practice squad. They give you a little depth in case you get hurt at certain positions.”

Quarterback JAY CUTLER

On whether the Broncos will overlook the Chiefs

“We are kind of a young team, so we are not going to overlook anybody. They have talent like any other NFL team. If you look at their record when they play at Arrowhead (Stadium)-it’s a tough battle. We are not overlooking this one at all.”

On why it is so tough to play at Arrowhead Stadium

“It has a lot to do with the rivalry. We have been playing them for a long time. It’s a tough stadium-it’s one of the loudest in the league. They just play good defense against us. They always have a good scheme, they always come ready to play and every NFL team out there has talent. Every team can win each and every week and you can lose to anybody. We have our hands full, definitely.”

On people saying the Broncos are “lucky”

“It’s fine. We can keep being lucky. It’s fine with me.”

On whether it’s hard for a Vanderbilt guy to wear orange

“It is. I had to get used to orange, especially orange hats. Vandy is 4-0 – What are we (ranked No.) 21 right now? The coaches over there are great. They are doing a great job. The talent has gotten better and better each and every year, so I’m happy for them. I talk to (Co-Passing Game Coordinator & Quarterbacks) Coach (Jimmy) Kiser every week, and I’m thrilled for them. Hopefully they can keep it going.”

On the Chiefs’ defense

“They have had some tough games. Some stuff looks good, but they are banged up a little bit. They will have a good gameplan against us and we’re not sure what they are going to come out and play-if they are going to zone us up or play man and blitz us. We’ll see what happens.”

On whether he is concerned about a letdown after starting 3-0

“You always have to be concerned. Letdowns are always possible, especially after two emotional wins. This week has kind of been up and down, but we have a good group of guys and I’m sure we will be ready.”

On C Tom Nalen being placed on injured reserve

“It’s weird. I was just talking to him in the meeting. I asked him what he is going to do today. For the past 14, 15, 16 years, Wednesdays he has always been here. He will be around. It will be tough for him to stay away. He’s one of the leaders on the offense, one of the leaders of the offensive meetings rooms, especially the O-Line. It’s going to be tough. I think one of our best pickups in the offseason was getting (C) Casey (Wiegmann). He steps right in, doesn’t miss a beat and is a leader on the offensive line.”

On the characteristics of a good center

“It’s a tough position. You don’t get a lot of love. The left tackle gets a lot of attention. I have to have a great relationship with the center because you communicate a lot. We have to be on the same page. Me and Casey (Wiegmann) are still battling through some stuff communication-wise, but he’s been phenomenal this year. We are lucky to have him.”

On whether he is comfortable with C Casey Wiegmann

Since Day 1 I’ve been comfortable, but stuff happens in the game. He’s from a different system, it’s loud out there and sometimes we’re not clicking. But we work through it and he’s great on the sideline. He has seen it all. He knows all about the AFC West and what the Broncos are about. It’s really like we never lost Tom (Nalen). He steps right in there and it’s Tom all over again.

On the differences between Nalen and Wiegmann

Not a lot. Tom is a little grumpier maybe. Physically they are about the same. They are not huge guys. In the locker room they are the same-they don’t really say a lot. Casey doesn’t say a lot unless he needs to talk to somebody. They are both great leaders and they go out there and do their job. We haven’t lost a step with Casey in there.

  • Horvil Tiki

    Come on vernond fox lets see bawl some body up on the kick return.

    I so glad we steal the Casey weegman from chef.

  • precisiontint

    Just stay hungry. And don’t drink the Orange Crush too fast. It is for serving!

  • Denver Diehard

    I was expecting to see comments from Shananhan on why they let Hamza go. There still is no official word from Dove Valley about the move. Whats going on?