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Todd Wash - Thursday, October 17, 2019

(On what the defense will look like without Jalen Ramsey) "We're still going to be our single safety, just kind of like we've been the last couple of weeks, three weeks, without Jalen [Ramsey]. But obviously, there has to be some tweaks and some changes when you let a player like that go to another team. We're going to have to change some things up and make sure that we're still putting our guys in position to make plays, that's the most important thing."

(On if Ramsey's departure will help CB Tre Herndon's mentality moving forward) "We feel very comfortable with Tre [Herndon]. And he's done a really nice job the last three weeks. Obviously, each week not knowing if he was going to play and stuff like that, he prepared as if he was the starter, so I think we know what we have with Tre, which is very important. Now, obviously, the rest of the back end all needs to step up and continue to play well, because they have been the last couple of weeks."

(On where he has seen improvement from Herndon) "His knowledge, obviously, of the package [has improved], understanding how to study wide receivers. I think [Secondary Coach – Cornerbacks] Coach [Tim] Walton does a really nice job with all those guys back there, the corners and the nickels. But you really see him understanding the concepts and stuff, and what we're really asking for them. He does a tremendous job at the line of scrimmage. What we're teaching, he goes out there each and every day and tries to execute exactly what we're teaching. He doesn't vary from what we're teaching, and you see him getting better because of it."

(On his reaction to the Ramsey trade) "Obviously it's tough. Jalen's a very, very good football player. He's really matured over the last three years. It's been a joy coaching him when he's been here the last couple years. Obviously, we wish him nothing but the best. I liked having him out there on Sunday's. But, like everybody's saying, it was the best thing for the organization right now and we wish him nothing but the best. I talked to him the night that the trade happened, he was in good spirits and we wish him nothing but the best."

(On if LB Najee Goode will remain the starter at linebacker and what LB Quincy Williams's role will be moving forward) "I thought Najee [Goode] played really well. Really kind of cleaned up some of the things that we have struggled on, maybe early in the year. But we're still [providing reps to] Quincy [Williams] quite a bit. He's going to be a very good football player, like I said a couple weeks ago. We really have to set a good foundation for the kid, he's only played linebacker six, seven weeks of his whole life. So, he's getting better and better, and he'll continue to get reps during the week. And if we need him on Sunday's, he'll be ready to go."

(On if playing linebacker in the preseason helped Goode's communication with LB Myles Jack in Week 6 vs. New Orleans) "That, and they're both vets. Our system's different than a lot of other people's system. He came in and picked up on it quickly because he's a vet and I just think when you're working with two vets together, they know how to play off of each other. They're not covering for one another; they can each do their job and that showed up last week when we played pretty decent."

(On if they will get CB D.J. Hayden more involved in the defense) "It all depends on what we're seeing each week. If we're blitzing him, he did a nice of putting pressure on the quarterback on a third and long in the game, but it really just depends on how much we're going to do with him, depending on what we see. He can play zone, he can play man, he can blitz. But it's all predicated on what we're seeing each week."

(On if Hayden is as physical a defender as the defense has) "Yeah. He nicked his elbow up in the game, he's tough, he came back. I talked to him in the parking lot right after the game and he said, 'First thing, I'll be ready to go on Wednesday.' So, he is a tough young man, you have to be. He's a glorified linebacker in our system with our split safety stuff in the run game. He's a tough young man."

(On if he sees a sense of urgency in the defense due to the lack of margin for error) "I think after the Carolina game, there was a real sense of urgency in the room, you could tell. Obviously, we addressed it. We played like crap and they knew it and I think they have a lot of pride in that room. So, we come back, hold New Orleans to 13 points. There's a lot of pride in that room, so regardless of who we play, what kind of style we play, there's a lot of pride and they want to play well."

(On what concerns him about Cincinnati's offense) "I think [Bengals Head Coach] Zac [Taylor] came out earlier in the week and said they need to start the run game, so for us, I think our front seven, our front eight, depending on what we're in, has to be able to win the battle of the box. And that's what I told them, one of our keys this week is to win the battle of the box and be able to control the line of scrimmage up front. And then, when they get in the play action game, they do a nice job. It's part of the Rams' system. They do a nice job of really trying to stress the three-deep stuff, so that's the things that concerns me. Obviously, the run game and the play action."

(On what he's seen out of Bengals QB Andy Dalton on film) "Very accurate. Obviously, he's been under some pressure, but he stands in there, he's another tough guy, he's been around for a while. He's got very good arm strength and accuracy. And then Zac's kind of added a little bit of a dimension that they didn't do out in LA, [with] the quarterback run game, and so he's a good athlete. We have to make sure that we can keep him in the pocket, try to get after him and hopefully we can force some poor decisions. But he usually makes really good decisions with the ball."