Coach's Wednesday News Conference

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Transcript of head coach Eric Mangini's news conference with the New York Jets media Wednesday morning:

In terms of this game, any time you play a road game in Buffalo, it's difficult. It's a loud stadium and you don't know what the weather conditions are going to be. I've played there with the strong winds that swirl across, snow and cold. You're not sure what you're going to get and you have to be able to adjust to that. The fact that this will be our eighth game including the preseason and this is the first time we've been on a plane is pretty amazing. We have to get the rookies some of those little wings the pilot gives out.

Buffalo is a team that offensively I think has followed a formula that's been successful for them: their ability to run the football and big offensive line. I think Marshawn Lynch is an emerging player who is going to keep getting better and he's got the ability to hit the home run and make some tough runs. The [offensive] line is one of the biggest we've faced, not just this year but last year as well. The receivers have several guys that can score any time they touch the ball. Lee Evans is explosive. Any time Roscoe Parrish has the ball in his hands, he's extremely dangerous. Other complementary receivers do a really good job getting open and creating plays both on shorter and intermediate routes and on the deep balls that are mixed in.

On defense, what I really like about this team is the way they run to the football. They are impressive with the amount of people they get to the ball on every single play. They are able to penetrate and flow quickly to the ball. Multiple times you'll see on tape there's nine, 10 or 11 hats on the ball, which is really a trademark of their defense. You generate a lot plays like that, and they have generated a lot plays like that. Their defensive ends, Chris Kelsay and Aaron Schobel, are tough to deal with. They create a lot of pressure off the edge. Schobel, I think, has two sacks less than Jason Taylor since 2003. He was very productive against us in the second game last year with nine tackles and three sacks. He's a guy that can change the game similar to the way Jason can change the game, and they complement him with other players inside and a constant rotation of defensive linemen to keep the guys fresh and in that attack mode throughout the course of the game.

On special teams, this is an impressive unit. The kick returner can score on every play, the punt returner can score on every play. The field goal kicker can hit the long field goals — 5-for-5 from plus-50 since 2005, the only kicker that's had that. His efficiency is outstanding and the punter consistently pins people down inside the 5-yard line. The coverage units very rarely give up a long return. I think they've had one since 2004 and average about 20 or 21 yards a return, which is exceptional. So across the board they present problems, and it's a difficult place to play.

On injured Buffalo players …

When you put on the tape and see the first return Roscoe Parrish has is a 74-yarder against Denver, that changes the whole course of the game. [Terrence] McGee's long kickoff return totally changes field position against Pittsburgh. There's the pressure they put on all three teams they've played in the regular season and their ability to create negative plays in the running game. Then you look at Lee Evans — we felt it last year, 77-yard touchdown pass. The running back behind that big offensive line is challenging and getting better each week.

With the quarterback, he had a really outstanding efficiency rating in the preseason, comes in with no practice time and drives the ball down against one of the better defenses in the league. Now he's going to have a week of practice and be similar to Kellen [Clemens] where you go from the two to the one, get all those reps and things clear up quite a bit. I'd say the best way to guard against anything like that is to put on tape and watch the things they've done against teams that have a combined record of 8-1.

On opponents coming back in the fourth quarter and on playing a solid four quarters …

We emphasize that every single week. You're always looking to string those quarters together. Every game you're going to see those two-minute drives. They play a huge part. You've seen them across the league where it comes down to a two-minute situation at the end or it's multiple no-huddle situations in the fourth quarter. The ability for the teams to change momentum in the fourth quarter, similar to what we did against Baltimore and what Miami did against us, you see every single week. Five to 10 games come down to either a series at the end of the half or a series or two at the end of the game.

On QB Trent Edwards having limited work …

Brian [Schottenheimer] spent some time with him, which is positive to have that background. You go back, look at his preseason, and watch the work he did against New England. He generated some plays and he has the ability to move and shuffle in the pocket in terms of boots or dashes, change-the-position or move-the-pocket-type plays, and there were a couple of plays there with Lee Evans where they just barely missed on the deep ball. The same elements you saw with [J.P.] Losman you're seeing with Edwards as well.

On if it is a distraction to play a team that is a "rival" …

What we always know about conference games is they are going to be extremely tough because you have so much background with those teams. You've seen them a lot on tape and done a lot of their games so you have that information to build off of as opposed to a team that you play once every two to three years and you don't have that same background. Now you're digging deeper and deeper each time, you know you have problems that you can create and they know problems they can create. Outside of the emotional element of it being a divisional game, you've got that background to work off of.

On if it is wasted emotion to get caught up in rivalries …

It's not a function of generating the emotion to play that opponent. It's the understanding of how difficult those games always are. Last year you saw the different swings in the division. We won the first one against Buffalo up there and they won the second one here. Miami beat New England. I don't think it's a function of pure emotion in terms of getting up for the game but knowing that those are always going to be really tough games.

On how G Adrien Clarke has done as a starter …

I think he's done a lot of good things. There's some things he needs to continue to work on. I talk each Wednesday and Monday with the team about that, go through and assess where you need to improve and being honest about that. "Did I prepare the way I should have prepared? Did I prepare the same way I did the first week? Where can I get better? Who can I watch tape with to help me?" There is evaluating the personal preparation from the mental side. Did you go out to practice with a purpose? I want to improve the way that I set. It might be my short set or maybe it's my off-hand jam if I'm a defensive back or at the top of the route [if I am a receiver]. Can I walk off the field and say, "I've improved in this today"? Now you get 65 guys working on skill-sets and one thing gets better each day, the team gets better each week, each day and each practice.

On concern about Bills screen passes …

They've got a full complement of screens, like most teams. It could be to the tailback, tight end or wide receiver. There's a lot of different ways you can attack it. They hit [Roscoe] Parrish with one last year on the third-and-26 and almost got the first down. So there are a lot of different types of screens you can set up and they have the full complement of them.

On if he is worried by the unknown of QB Trent Edwards …

You are either facing a situation like we had in Baltimore preparing for two different quarterbacks or this situation where it's a newer quarterback. Even though you have some information on him, you haven't seen the multiple reps with the first unit. You have seen a lot of reps in the preseason with guys that were trying to make the team and that looks a little bit different. You didn't see him with the first group of receivers and the first line, so some of that is going to unfold early in the game. You try to evaluate the things he does well, the things he does poorly and those skill-sets outside of which he was playing with. Now he's going to be playing with a different group and you've got to let that unfold a little bit as well.

On how much time it takes to clean up screens …

We spend a lot time offensively and defensively on that element of the game. I like the play. I think it's a good way to handle pressure. Offensively, I think it's a good way to separate the defense. Defensively, you always have to be aware of where those players are. If they get the separation with the blockers in front, you really have to understand where you fit in relationship to the next player: Am I the outside player and I have to set the edge or push it back inside? Sometimes the corner will jump inside the blocker and the screen player has the whole sideline and you've cut off the pursuit. As the inside player, do you need to set the other wall for the funnel to the safety?

Those things happen quickly and they happen in space. How do you take on the offensive linemen in the open field? If you're going to try to shake them and avoid the block and give ground, which way do you do it? Where do you need to fit? All those things are important parts of playing the play effectively.

On how much Justin McCareins played last week …

Justin actually played more than he did in Baltimore.

On Brad Smith's playing time …

It is a function of the personnel group we're primarily in, so there were more opportunities for Brad to get in. Brad's a dynamic player and I think he can do a lot of good things with the ball in his hands. We have a lot of players like that. You're always trying to incorporate them and keep your guys fresh, make sure that Laveranues [Coles] can get a blow at some point in the game, Jerricho [Cotchery] and even Chris [Baker], mix in Leon [Washington] and Thomas [Jones] to have the maximum effect over the course of the whole game.

On Smith's development as a receiver …

I think he's doing really well. His production last week overall was exactly what we are looking for: A tackle on special teams, two kickoff returns, he carried the ball and caught passes. That is pretty good.

On if he looks for situations to get Smith plays …

He always has a complement of plays. Each guy has a group of plays that are targeted specifically for them. You're not sure whether or not you're going to be able to get to those plays and there is a normal progression that Chad [Pennington] has to go through to find the open receiver. Even though one receiver may look like he's being really featured that week, it may just be a function of the coverage that they are playing. If it's a lot of three-deep, the X receiver would get more balls typically. If it's a lot of two-deep, it may be the inside slot receivers. If there's a lot of man-to-man, it could be the tight end depending on the formations that you're building.

On if Smith is fully immersed in the QB group …

It's more based on the work we did during the preseason, and that was a big part of that work. Now he can carry those plays into every single game. Then you can create three or four game-plan-specific plays as opposed to practicing 12 plays with him at quarterback. You just don't have the reps for that with Chad, Kellen, Marques [Tuiasosopo] and Brad. The numbers just aren't there.

On if Smith attends more meetings …

He's been to quite a few, kind of like his roles on the team — kickoff returns, kickoffs, punt returns, punts, running the ball, catching the ball, throwing the ball and calling plays.

On CB Andre Dyson's role on the team …

Andre has been working in that group and will continue to work in with that group. I like the three guys we have there and the ability to put any one of the three in the game at whatever time and feel comfortable with it. I would say it's the three guys working together for those two spots.

On how you draw an opponent offsides …

It takes a lot of discipline from the offensive group because Chad varies the cadence so much. You want to do that because once those guys get a bead on when that ball is going to be snapped, it's a lot harder on the offense because now they've got the edge. The edge that you will always have offensively is, one, knowing where you are going, and two, when the play is starting. Chad does a nice job of mixing in quick counts and by varying those up it puts a lot pressure on the defensive line.

On how important it is that the Bills are 0-3 …

Regardless of what the opponent's record is, it's just important for us to win the game.

On if he knows Bills coach Dick Jauron, who went to Yale, since he attended Wesleyan, also in Connecticut …

I've gotten to know Dick a little bit and have talked to him different times in the offseason. I think he's a great guy and is very smart. There are a lot of smart coaches that didn't go to Yale, but he is very smart. I respect him as a head coach and as a person.

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