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Quick Hits from Coach Fox

Posted Dec 9, 2013

Head Coach John Fox addresses the team's short week of preparation, Peyton Manning in cold weather and defensive players earning opportunities.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- The Broncos have officially clinched a spot in the playoffs. But it's no time to celebrate.

The team has other goals still within reach, including improving its postseason seed.

That starts with a short week before a rematch with the division-rival San Diego Chargers arrives on Thursday Night Football.

“We’ve got a pretty good schedule in place for Thursday nights — this is our third year doing it," Head Coach John Fox said. "Not going too much into detail, but the players were off today. Most of them came back in to get their flush workout in. We have two days to prepare. They’ll be ready.”

In the meantime, Fox updated the injury status of three players -- Wes Welker, Derek Wolfe and Trindon Holliday -- in his weekly Monday press conference. Read the updates here.

Below are more highlights from the session:

On the outpouring of touchdowns scored around the league yesterday
“I think with the rules, the way they are—getting later in the season, the offense, those guys get better. There is more continuity involved. A lot was made of the weather. When you turned on and watched some of those field conditions—I think, being around a long time, the bad footing really helps the offense a little bit more than the defense. Some people don’t understand that. I think that is why you saw a lot of long touchdowns, particularly in the kicking game, as well as guys can’t keep their footing and miss tackles. It creates more explosive plays.”

On whether that is because defenders have to react to offensive players
“Yeah. (Offensive players) know where they’re going and the defense doesn’t. When the footing is poor, that works to the offense’s advantage.”

On the condition of the turf at Sports Authority Field at Mile High yesterday
“Excellent. I thought our crew did a great job. They had the field covered and we had some snow early yesterday. I know driving to the stadium—when I looked at my thermometer and it said 16 (degrees). It was like a heat wave (compared to) what we had practiced in all week (laughing).”

On quarterback Peyton Manning’s comments about cold weather
“I think the better he continues to play in the cold, I think the less chatter there will be about that. I was asked about it—before and after. I’m just really glad he’s on our side. I don’t care about the weather.”

On if he likes it when Peyton Manning gets fired up
“I like him pretty much either way (laughing). He’s a great competitor and like I said, I’m glad he’s on our side.”

On trying out different things on defense
“I thought we put some guys and plugged them in. I thought (S) Omar Bolden got a little more playing time and I thought he did decent. Again this is just off watching the game live. (LB) Paris Lenon, again he’s a veteran guy and he’s played a lot of football and we haven’t given him a lot of opportunities. Some of this is giving guys opportunities to see what they can do. We try to get better every day and every week as we move closer to the end of the season. I think it just helps us. Our agenda is to get better every day, that’s what we’re trying to do.”

On Wesley Woodyard
“Wesley Woodyard is a great player for us and he’s done a tremendous job. Wesley Woodyard’s fine. He’s going to play a lot of football for us moving forward. It really doesn’t have much to do with that. It that the other guys have earned opportunities and the more guys that you can call on, the better it is for your football time.”

On saying he was resting Woodyard after the game
“He had a type of injury that can affect you and the more hits you take on it the less it is. It’s not so much just about that, it’s part of it but basically the situation is giving other guys opportunities that we feel like have earned them.”

On preventing starting games slowly
“You have to play better early. I know it sounds simple but it’s happened a couple times. It’s happened a bunch this season, really. You mentioned the last few weeks, we were down 21-7 in Kansas City as well as yesterday 14-7. But we started 14-0 on the road in Dallas and the same thing at home against Washington. I think at the end of the day, it’s not where you start, its where you finish and I think it kind of builds a little bit when guys don’t blink and you can weather that problematic start, especially on the road. I think hopefully that helps us moving down the road.”