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Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Gruden says offense can be grasped in a hurry

By Pat Yasinskas
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas

 
 Doug Benc/Getty Images
 Jon Gruden said "anything is possible" when asked if his offense could be picked up quickly.

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Jon Gruden gave a very interesting response when asked how quickly someone could pick up his offense.

"In my experience in the league, I haven't had the good fortune to have -- other than [Rich] Gannon -- a guy play a very long period of time," Gruden said. "The guy played three consecutive years for me. Brad Johnson went two consecutive years for me. We got Tim Rattay ready to play and he won a game for us in Cleveland. We brought him in during the midseason. Anything is possible if you put your heart in it and if you put your soul into it and you can believe it can happen."

Gruden then went on to compare Brett Favre's situation to receiver Jerry Rice landing in Oakland.

"This is an unprecedented situation, at least in my opinion," Gruden said. "I was in Oakland when we got Jerry Rice. That was similar to this from the standpoint that he was probably the best receiver to ever play. He switched zip codes, but he didn't change houses. He changed colors. I used to spend more time talking about how Jerry feels in a silver hat.

Gruden's offense has been hailed as one of the league's most complicated. But it doesn't sound like that would scare Gruden away from Favre.

"Everybody says our offense is like Greek -- it's hard to figure out and hard to write," Gruden said. "Well, Bruce Gradkowski started as a rookie, OK? [Jeff] Garcia went in and went to the Pro Bowl in his first year. Brad Johnson went to a Pro Bowl and won a world title as a first-year quarterback. Cadillac [Williams] was the Rookie of the Year. Michael Clayton did good as a rookie. Arron Sears started as a rookie. I get tired [of hearing] how hard it is. It's demanding now, especially in training camp because we're trying to get our defense ready for a lot of things, too. We're not just running our offense. We're running the Cleveland Browns offense. We're running the Minnesota Vikings running attack so we get some familiarity with their schemes. Anything is possible, in my opinion, if you have a group of guys that are committed to getting it done."