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Transcript: Scott Satterfield weekly presser

Chick-fil-A Kickoff - Louisville v Ole Miss Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

You can find video of Satterfield’s presser here

(On what he learned from watching the film vs. Ole Miss, specifically on the offensive side of the ball)

I think probably the things we did in the passing game, obviously, worked a lot better in the second half. Taking the things that the defense was giving us in the first half, they were dropping (coverage) a lot early on in the game, and we did not take advantage of that in the first half. Then by the second half, you go out there, Malik (Cunningham) settled down and receivers started to find ways to get open, we found a couple of ways to run the football, and we got in a better rhythm in the second half. We were able to go down the field and score on all four drives. The one thing we still wasn’t able to do, is get big plays. We had a few that were over 20 yards, but not many. I think that was a big part in the game. What they wanted to do was make us drive the football. They were trying to keep everything in front of them in that five DB shield that they were playing back there, and they did a good job with that. They really didn’t make too many mistakes defensively. Watching the film from last year, you saw several mistakes that they made throughout the course of their season, and they did a really good job. They did a really nice job of defending the things that we like to do, but our guys bounced back. I was proud of the way they bounced back in the second half, Cunningham settled in played a lot better, the line blocked better — really the whole offense. It’s just disappointing it didn’t happen in the first half. I thought the very first drive, we had a pretty good drive going into first bit of the game. Unfortunately, the play on the 4th & 1, we didn’t get right there at midfield. You feel like if you get that, you get an opportunity to go down and maybe get some points on the board. Then right before half, we had another good drive. We get all the way down inside the 20, and we mishandled the pitch. That would have been a touchdown, that would have been a walk-in easily for Hassan (Hall). That’s a misfortune there, because that’s a 10 point swing. Now you’re looking at a different kind of game, because we get the ball at the beginning of the second half, and go down score too. Those type of plays, they affect ballgames, and we didn’t have much room for error the way their offense was moving the ball.

(On if offensive linemen Bryan Hudson and Michael Gonzalez stood out on tape)

They did. Brian Hudson played really, really well inside, Gonzalez played well. Gonzalez, really to me, may have played one of the best games up front, especially since he hadn’t played in two years. He’s a true freshman. He played a great game. Number seven for them is an All-SEC type defensive lineman, he’s a really good player, and he held his own against him. That was encouraging to see the way he played. He played with a great base, very confident, and he looked like he belonged, That was awesome to see. That gives us a couple more guys that can go out there and play. Bryan Hudson’s a very strong, solid player up front, and gives you that good size that you need to get some good push, and I thought he played well. They ended up playing a lot of snaps by the end of it. I think Gonzalez was over 40 snaps.

(On how different all the offensive rotations will be Saturday against EKU)

It just remains to be seen. We’re sitting here on Wednesday, middle of the week, we’re still analyzing and looking to see what gives us the best chance to make plays for us outside, and what position that might be. Then also up front. Seeing which guys are going to perform and play the most snaps. Just because a guy starts, doesn’t necessarily mean he’s gonna play the most snaps, either. Actually, that was the case Monday. Trevor Reid started, but Gonzalez ended up playing more snaps. A lot of that will be determined by the end of week, and we’ll see who we want to get out there the most, and who we need to try to get the ball to.

(On if a quick turnaround may be a good thing for the players)

It is in this case, for sure. You do miss two days, you know miss a Monday and a Tuesday type practice, but our guys are anxious to get back out on the field and play. That is certainly a positive. The fact that it was a game that was going on at midnight on Monday, and you got to play five days later, it’s hard to spin it in a positive way, because our guys are still a little bit tired today. That’s a quick turnaround. But, they are anxious to get this taste out of their mouth, and get back out on the field, and prove that they are a good football team, and they can play.

(On how the coaches game plan on such a short week)

We didn’t have any time off. We came in, we got in at 4am, and we practiced yesterday. It was more than what we normally do for a Sunday practice, so we elevated that up a little bit. Today was a Wednesday practice for us, so essentially, we missed the off day, and we missed a Tuesday practice. So we literally did an expanded Sunday practice, and today was a Wednesday practice, tomorrow’s no sweat Thursday, so we’re going to go out and do about 35 minutes of walkthrough stuff, and then run through on Friday. We’re back to schedule now, but it’s just very condensed. It’s hard to put a game plan in, it’s short, and then really kind of relay that to your players. So you have to you have to keep it simple, for sure, as we head into this week. The other thing is, I want my guys to play fast and play physical, so you want them fresh. The best thing to do, is not to go as long and hard to hit. We’ve just been going with helmet this week, with spider pads on the shoulders, and hopefully we’ll be fresh on Saturday.

(On what he expects out of the wide receiver competition this week)

That’s something that we’re continuing to evaluate. I thought some of the guys did some good things out there. (Jordan) Watkins is a sure player, we saw that Braden Smith can do some good things, we trust what he’s gonna do. (Josh Johnson) had a good game — caught six balls. He’s gonna catch the football when you throw him the ball. We’ll see. We’ll see where we’re at with that, as we finish out this week, and see where the guys go. They certainly got to play better, we all got to play better offensively, we all know that. We got to play fast, we got to play physical up front, when a running back has an opportunity to make plays, he’s got to be able to make plays. I thought we had some nice runs in that game. I thought Hassan (Hall) had some nice runs in there too, and then the safety was coming down screaming and getting them down. That’s the free hitter. We got to be able to make that safety miss at times. (Trevion) Cooley only played 10 snaps, but he may be a guy that’s going to get some more opportunity there. We’re still figuring out who’s gonna be those playmakers, and who’s gonna be those guys. We’ll work that out the rest of this weekend, and see where we’re at on Saturday.

(On if he was surprised to see the defensive line not make a major impact against Ole Miss)

Yeah. I mean, obviously, we need more push and more impact from the defense line. I thought Ashton Gillotte was a guy that performed pretty well up front. But the way their offense, and how they run their offense with the RPOs, it’s tough for the defensive line to get back there. We did sack hime twice with some pressure, but they do have to make plays. They have to be able to get pressure on the quarterbacks. Penetration back there causes problems, obviously in the run game and the pass game. So we got to have more push up front.

(On if he was surprised that they were not able to run the ball more effectively)

They had a three man front, two backers, and then they had three safeties. So we got a deep safety and those two rovers that are kind of sitting there, screaming once the ball is handed off. They did a good job with that. We felt pretty good about being able to run the football, we just never could consistently get it going. Once the game got a little bit out of hand there, so you feel like you got to throw it a little bit more, and we ended up being pretty balanced in the run/throw, right around 40, close to it. But we felt like we could have run the ball a little bit better. We’d like the wide receivers to block a little better on the perimeter. There were times — we mentioned the safeties, but I think four times, we got a guy assigned for the safety to block him, but did not get their block, and then he’s free to make the tackle. Those kind of blocks are the ones that take a six yard gain, and they make it 46 yards, because you get that safety, and our guys were able to take it up the field. We got to do a much better job with that blocking down the field.

(On an injury update to wide receiver Shai Werts)

Shai’s got a lower body sprain, and he will not be available this week. It remains to be seen how long he’ll be out. I would anticipate a couple of weeks probably, and then we’ll reevaluate where we are. He got rolled up pretty good in the game there. But he was the only one, fortunately for us, the only one that got dinged in that game.

We really missed Monty Montgomery in the second half, not having him out there in the second half of the second quarter, and the second half. He’s one of our best playmakers on defense, and not having him out there in that second half, that really hurt us.

(On if the missed tackles could be attributed to guys not hitting as much in practice)

I think the big factor was really just being out of position on where we needed to be in order to make those tackles. I don’t correlate that to not tackling as much. We tackled about as much as we’ve always tackled this preseason. Number one, they had a pretty good scheme, and pretty good players in space. When they spread us out, and gave notice to the wide receivers and how wide they were in their splits, which created a lot more space in the middle of the field in some of those benders, those slants that they were hitting, and they’re hitting them on the run. Their guys did a good job of avoiding some tackles. We obviously got to tackle better, we got to be more physical coming down on contact, we’re hitting them and falling off. We got to wrap up. I anticipate us getting better with that as we move forward, but I do want to give them a little bit of credit as well. Some of the things that they were doing offensively, they’re not a bad offense. They’re pretty good offense, and they’ve proven that all last year.

(On of they starting to make adjustments to their play calling and script in the first half, or waited until halftime)

No, we started making adjustments in the first half. We were trying to find ways to run the ball on the edges. They had their three down lineman, so we were trying to get outside on the edge there. We had a couple of good plays out there, we just got to be more consistent and better with that. Then we also tried to hit the passes underneath. We’re trying to send some guys behind those guys to get them back, and then have guys coming underneath. Late the first half, we tried to hit that, and we got a good drive going on that last drive before halftime. We came out in the second half, our first play was three verticals with an under by by Marshon Ford. We hit him, and got a nice play — about 15 yards. Then we started to settle in. We were trying to do it earlier in the game, and we got a couple penalties, it knocked us back, you’re 2nd & 20, just the way the flow of the game happened there. But yeah, obviously we want to try to do that sooner, make the play as early as we can to get things going. Again, I was proud of our guys to come back and score 24 in the second half. It was too little, too late, but it showed fight, it showed that we’re capable of doing it. They had their starters in the whole game. We’re capable of hanging in there, we just got to have a better start, and we got to sustain that throughout the whole game.