Donovan McNabb and defensive coordinator Jim Johnson were in the interview tent today. Johnson was asked for the umpteenth time about using three cornerbacks -- Asante Samuel, Lito Sheppard and Sheldon Brown -- at the same time.
Here is his response, along with highlights from what he and McNabb had to say.
On what percentage of the time they will play nickel coverage: “Every year it’s different. I know some years we started a couple games with nickel defense. It was like 65, 70 percent of the time we played a lot of nickel. Some years it might be 40 percent, but I anticipate 50 or 60 percent. As more and more teams go to three wideouts, four wideouts on first and second down, we’re going to match up with our nickel defense. But I’m not going to let ‘em dictate too much. I might start the game with all three of ‘em on the field. There’s a lot of things we feel comfortable doing with those three guys. It’ll work itself out. I’m not too concerned about that right now. It’s good competition."
On whether S Sean Considine could challenge S Quintin Mikell for a starting spot: “I think that, right now, it’s Q’s job. There’s no question about it. But, we’ll play the best player. That’s what preseason’s about. The lineup is pretty well set. We’ll use Sean a lot of different ways. Sometimes in nickel, and Q will play in dime. We’ll try to get the best players on the field.”
On what can be done to improve the offense without many major offseason moves:
“I think for us, we pretty much have to get back to the basics and not try to come out and shock people with different types of plays. I think if we run our offense and get everybody involved early, I think that will be important for us to get into that rhythm. We started fast [in 2006] against the Houston Texans, and opened up the offense a little more. I think we can do that."