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Rams CB Cortland Finnegan: "I Found my Dagger, so I got my Swagger"

Posted Oct 30, 2013

CB CORTLAND FINNEGAN

(on whether this is a game he circled on his calendar)

It’s definitely a blessing to still be able to play the game, but going against them, I’m not sure I had it circled. You want to win your division and every game in front of that, but I know this is an important game because it’s our next game. I look forward to it because I know there’s a lot of familiar faces.

(on who he still talks to)

Jason McCourty, Vern (Alterraun Verner), Colin (McCarthy), Griff (Michael Griffin). A lot of defensive guys still.

(on whether he will be ready to play Sunday)

You know what, I’m just getting back healthy, 100 percent now. I feel good. I definitely want to put my best foot forward. I’m not sure if I’m going to have something for these guys; I’m just going to go out there and play football.

(on his hamstring injury)

Even if it did or didn’t (affect me), there’s no excuses. It’s part of it, trying to battle through it. I tried to take my time with it. Now that I’m back to 100 percent, it’s perfect timing for a game that I look forward to.

(on this season not being his best statistically)

That’s obvious. You know what, from a personal standpoint, I think I was not buying in totally. (I just) wasn’t making plays. I’m not sure they were big plays; there were one or two passes, giving up two passes a game, and one of them was a touchdown. That seems to be a bad stat especially when you’re losing. It’s just getting back to basics, and I enjoy that. You got to thrive through the good and bad times. I’m not really worried about that.

(on moving back in the right direction)

Well, I do. I found my dagger, so now I got my swagger. Now I’m going to be A-OK, thank you.

(on where the dagger was)

I think it was like Thor — it was in a rock I couldn’t get out of. I knew I had to pull softly. I tried to pull with everything I had, and it just wasn’t working.

(on whether it feels like he never left Tennessee given the familiar faces with the Rams)

I guess you could say that in one breath the fact that there’s so many Titans employees and players. At the same time, we beat to our own drum up here. It’s a good atmosphere, a good place to be in, and we look forward to playing the Tennessee Titans.

(on whether Jeff Fisher is the same coach with the Rams)

He’s better. He just is. He’s the man. That’s it. Point blank. Period. I won’t elaborate on it; he’s just better.

(on whether this is an emotional game)

I mean, both sides would like to win this game for a lot of different reasons. I think it happens to be the next game, but it also happens to be against a former team. I know it means something to him just because it happens to be the next game, but it’s also against the former team he coached for so many years. I’m not sure about the emotions side, but we’ll see. I look forward to the game.

(on whether he is looking forward to covering a specific Titans wide receiver)

No. I mean, all of them pose something different. Nate’s (Washington) crafty in what he does. You watch Kendall Wright on film, and he’s in the slot. You’ve got Justin Hunter pressing the field. You’ve got Delanie (Walker), the tight end/receiver, and you’ve got Kenny Britt. They’ve got weapons. They’ve got the quarterback now that they want. They’ve got a run game, so we’ve got to do our due diligence with trying to slow them down.

(on Jake Locker’s improvement)

You see him on film and you’re not sure what to expect because he’s making all the throws. We all know he can make plays with his feet because he’s done that since he’s been there, but he’s making all the throws. His touch is there. He’s one of the up-and-coming quarterbacks for sure in the NFL.

(on the importance of stifling the Titans’ offense early on)

Absolutely. They start with their run game up front. We all know who Chris Johnson is. You’ve got to try and slow that down because there’s really no stopping him; one crease and he’s got an 80-yard run. It’s really doing our due diligence trying to stop the run. We’ve got to take away the quick reads and go from there. We’ll see how that game plays out.

(on the challenges Shonn Greene presents)

I think they do some of the same things when they’re both in the game, but you’re sure to get a different running game with Shonn Greene. He’s more of a power back. He can get to the edge against you, but where he does his damage is inside the tackles. I think Chris Johnson can do the same thing, but where he’s explosive is that cutback run, that seam, or if he gets the edge. In a way they’re two different backs, but they can do the same thing.

(on whether the team is encouraged or frustrated after Monday night’s loss)

Did we win, or did we lose? OK—there it is. You know, when you look at film, you try to get better from all the things that you need to work on, and you build on the things you did well. That’s what we have to do. I think as a defense we took a good step in the right direction against a division opponent. People gave us no chance, and we came out on fire and played well. I think if we carry that same intensity this week, hopefully it’ll be a different result on the scoreboard.

(on whether he will be feisty this weekend)

I don’t know about cutting any slack, but I’m just going to play football. I have a tremendous amount of respect for Nate (Washington). He’s done it so well for so long in the NFL. Kenny (Britt), you can’t say enough good things about him. I really enjoyed playing against him and practicing against him when I was there. I mean, they have some new faces. It’s sort of a new thing for me, but I look forward to seeing Big Country (David Stewart) and (Michael) Roos. If I come off the edge one time..that’s something I look forward to.

(on Michael Griffin saying Finnegan will verbally get after Nate Washington this weekend)

I think he’s wrong in that aspect. Like I said, Nate’s (Washington) been playing great for the past two years, and he’s overcome a lot. He’s a savvy veteran, and I really do look forward to playing against him. He’s a great guy, good person, and a great receiver.

(on whether the Titans will try to get under his skin)

I don’t really know if anything gets under my skin to be completely honest here. I don’t think that’s the case. Like I said, I have a great deal of respect and admiration for Nate (Washington). He’s just been great, so I just look forward to going out there and trying to cover him.

(on the Titans’ corners)

I think both of them are the damn man, let’s be honest. Vern (Alterraun Verner) man, they tried to write that son of a gun off. Now they can suck it if you want me to be completely honest. You were trying to write that young man off, but I knew he could do it all along. Same thing with (Jason) McCourty. Come on, they’ve got a new defensive coordinator in Gregg Williams. They changed the complexion of the team, and they’re running Gregg Williams’ stuff. You see the success you can have with a great coordinator like Gregg Williams.

(on whether he has something to prove this weekend)

You know, I have nothing left. I don’t have anything to prove to be honest. If we win the football game, that’s the most important thing. I think playing well for me is going to be the key. I don’t think proving anything but playing well will be a big thing. I don’t care if I play terrible and we win, that’s a plus. Victory is ultimately, at the end of the day, the team goal.

(on adjusting to St. Louis)

You know, it’s been different. There’s packed interstates, there’s packed highways, the food’s different, it’s a baseball town. The fans have been welcoming and warm and you know what, they still show up despite the years that they had six, seven years ago. It’s been a treat, it really has.

(on whether St. Louis can become a football town)

Well, hell, you just answered that question. If you’re winning, they will come. There it is. If you keep winning, they will come.

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