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Titans-Chiefs Postgame Quotes

Posted Oct 6, 2013

HEAD COACH MIKE MUNCHAK

(on mistakes putting team in a hole early)

I thought the way we started out offensively was unexpected, to struggle as much as we did early. They are a very good defense, we knew that, but again not making plays, having drops, not running the ball like we thought we could early. Defense, again giving them seven points to start the game early on a punt and after that, the defense played well in the first half kept us (in) like they have been doing all year. They did a great job against (their) offense giving up six points in the first half and allowed us the opportunity in the second half to come back out and really have a chance to take the game over. That was the encouraging thing as flat as we looked on offense in the first half, when we couldn’t finish that drive you know in the second quarter there on offense and then all of sudden we take the lead by (us having) three drives and scoring points. And again we are right there (with a chance) to win the football game even though the first half was rough and not good enough to win games. We came back in the third quarter, early fourth and put ourselves in position to try and win the game and again we didn’t make plays to do that.

(on Ryan Fitzpatrick settling in after slow start)

As far as early when you make a change you know it is going to affect your football team, you just don’t know how. You just don’t lose a quarterback and come out the next week…you move forward and it was hard. I think if we would have converted a couple of first downs early, I think that is what he needed. That’s what any guy I think needs when it is his first game back running the show. If we could have hit a couple of runs, done something early in the first or second series, it takes the pressure off him, then maybe it would be different. We were kind of struggling on both phases of the game and so we weren’t really on the field until almost the end of the second quarter when we finally put a drive together. And I think that led to the slow start, we just weren’t making any plays to help the quarterback.

(on disappointment of not being able to convert a touchdown in goal line situation))

 That’s what we say, it was disappointing, there’s no doubt about that. We thought we...until you watch it, it is hard to see exactly what happened. It is obviously hard to score down in that area. We know that in goal line, but the pass that was called Delanie (Walker) was wide open and thought that was the play we should have scored on that play. We didn’t execute it right so give them credit, probably should have kicked the field goal and moved on, but I thought there was a chance there. The defense was playing so well at that point and we finally had a drive and if we could have converted, finished it that would have given us a lot of momentum at that point in the game and I thought leaving the defense inside the one as good as they were playing really wouldn’t have been a bad thing and unfortunately they completed a long pass on the first one so it didn’t work out the way I hoped.

(on if Kansas City’s first touchdown was bad luck or avoidable)

 We hope it is avoidable, it should be avoidable. Darius (Reynaud) has to make it clearer, yell louder bring more attention as we can be aware as a group.  Kicked balls down in that area those things tend to happen. The ball may hit the ground.  You just have to be more aware. There is some bad luck involved, no doubt the way the ball bounces and hits people but you just can’t have those plays happen and that was an easy seven points, just like the Pittsburgh game giving way two. You just can’t do that against a good football team.

(on sideline late hit call on Moise Fokou)

I think that is very hard. From my view, the quarterback was inbounds when he tried to make sure he didn’t get the first (down). I think there is an inconsistency on how that is called. We have to realize on the boundary call it is going to be called closely, you know be smart there. I saw it happen at game speed so obviously we think it should be fourth down there and move on. They got the call and led to their touchdown. That’s one of those things to protect the quarterback, but you want that call both ways, those things. Rather than our quarterback, their quarterback, you want that to be consistent week to week.

(on if rule should apply if quarterback is running for a first down)

Again they are trying to protect him if he is giving himself up. You are not sliding to me, you are not giving yourself up. He wasn’t sliding. Jake (Locker) had a similar play at Houston, they didn’t call a foul. He slid at the beginning to give himself up and he got hit so that is the problem, the inconsistency with that. Again with any sideline hit, quarterback or not, you got to be smart, pulling off of him. I don’t know if he was trying to put one on him. I thought he was running to get there and I thought he delivered below his hands, but we will have to look at it.

(on if he was surprised at the run game’s struggles)

I thought we would. No doubt we went in, thinking we would (run better). Again, we know their defense has played well in a lot of categories. We knew that people said, ‘Well, they gave up X amount of yards per carry.’ A lot of that was draws at the end of games where it didn’t matter, so the stats weren’t really what was on tape. We knew it wasn’t going to be easy, but we need to run better in situations where we have to do a run—down by the goal line, second and short, third and short. We have to help the quarterback there, and we didn’t in too many situations. We have to regain that confidence that we can do that.

(on the field goal attempt with two seconds remaining in the game)

The play before that, when we took the sack, we were thinking if he completed one more pass because we knew we were out of time, that we would maybe kick the quick field goal and try a for an onside (kick). (Then) you get a chance at a play, one shot at the end zone to win it. Scoring a touchdown doesn’t do anything for us if the clock runs out. I think when we actually converted that play, which we didn’t expect, we weren’t sure. After the sack, the clock was running. When he first went out of bounds, we thought we had more time on the clock. We thought again, as we sent them out there, we thought we had time to kick the field goal and then have time for the onside kick. Obviously, once we saw that the clock had ticked down to two, we don’t have time for either or. We were trying to get him back, but he was already thinking hurry-up mode. We couldn’t get his attention and we had no timeouts.

(on frustrations on offense)

I think we’re all frustrated. I think a lot of guys didn’t make plays when they had to tonight. All of us—coaches, players. There is a lot of good stuff, I thought, on the defensive side of the ball. Guys on defense made a lot of plays, put us in positions, got some turnovers, played hard, kept us in a position to win it. On offense, there were too many times where we didn’t find a way to finish drives or continue drives. Again, when you play a team like them, we still had chances at the end. We had two or three opportunities where we got the ball back with plenty of time to go down and either get the field goal to tie it, or get the touchdown to win it. We turned the ball over twice, and that ended it.

(on injuries)

We lost a lot of linebackers early which hurt us a little bit there on defense. Those guys stepped up and did a nice job. There are a couple of hamstrings. I think (Derrick) Morgan had a little shoulder there toward the end. Zach (Brown) he came in and out. I think he tweaked his knee on that one play. He came back in, not quite sure what his status is. The linebacker thing was probably the biggest concern because we lost a lot of those guys early in the first half there. We don’t know to what extent.

(on what was working for the offense in the second half)

Really, some of the plays were broken plays. It was guys hustling. The quarterback had a couple nice runs when there was nobody open. He found lanes and took off and got the chains going. Obviously, the play with CJ (Chris Johnson) was him (Ryan Fitzpatrick) making a play and CJ making one. That’s what you talk about. That’s how this league is. There are going to be times where you’re going to have to do those type of things. That kind of sparked us, that drive to get the touchdown, got us going. The frustrating thing was we got the ball back a couple more times and settled for field goals. That’s kind of what made it difficult because we really had that window of opportunity in the third quarter, early fourth to put more points on the board than we did, or to put our defense in a better position than we did. That’s the part that we didn’t accomplish. We’re not happy about how the game started. We can go back and we will. ‘Hey, we should have done this or done that.’ The bottom line is we found a way back into that game and had an opportunity to go up by more than four, and we didn’t do that.

(on if the offensive play calling was too conservative early on)

I don’t think so. He (Ryan Fitzpatrick) had to make some decisions on where to go with the ball. I think we were throwing the ball a little bit. It wasn’t all run or all pass. I thought it was mixed pretty good. I think a couple of times we came out and threw it three times in a row. I think we were trying to find a way to get a completion and get something going. We started out 0-for-5; you can’t do that. We’re lucky that we were only down by what we were down by, 13-0, after seven points were a giveaway and then two field goals. To be 13-0 at half, we knew we were very fortunate at halftime. The way they came out in the third quarter, that’s what you hope you see your team do. Again, we couldn’t finish it.

(on how important it is to move past this loss and look ahead)

This game was a big game. AFC games are huge, especially at home. This one does hurt because we know we can play a lot better than we did. There were plays there to make that we didn’t. We’ll look at it and learn from it. There is obviously always good stuff on tape, also. We know what a challenge this league is, every Sunday is a challenge. We know going to Seattle, how hard that is and then the one after that. We have to go reload, and we will, and then have a good week and play much better next weekend.

QB RYAN FITZPATRICK

(on making a conscious decision at halftime to move the quarterback more in the second half)

No, not really. Once I did it once or twice, by the way that they were playing defense and mashing our guys and running around, I did after doing it make a, I think, conscious effort to get out a little bit more and make some plays.  That was one of the highlights, I guess.  The thing that got us going was kind of getting out of the pocket a little bit and gave us a little bit of momentum there.  We just couldn’t keep it.

(on starting slowing and having to find a rhythm before he got going)

Yeah, the slow start.  I just didn’t play well early.  I was trying to feel the game out rather than go out there and taking it.  I think that was part of it.  I know we had the drive where we got stopped on the one-yard line which was tough and came back in the second half and put some good drives together.  That was one of those games where the defense really kept us in it by the way that they played with the unfortunate touchdown on the punt return that we gave up early but the defense, I thought, fought hard and played great all day and gave us a shot all day. 

(on how long it takes to get a feel and rhythm with the receivers)

I think there’s only so much you can do in the practice setting.  I think that game like setting with live bullets flying and all that, that’s when you really work on timing and an understanding and a good feel for guys.  It takes a little bit of timing but I thought there were some good things.  Obviously, a lot of things I need to work on but there’s some good things that came out of today, especially with the way some of the guys, Kendall (Wright) and some of the other guys stepped up and played.

(on the pass batted back to him)

I had to throw it in there.  I mean it was Delanie Walker in the end zone and Derrick Johnson was running from inside out to try to get him.  We faked a play.  I was just going to turn around and throw it to him.  It would have been one of those where he was going to catch it and fall down in the end zone but I thought we might have had them there.

(on what woke the team up at halftime)

I think we got into a little better of a rhythm offensively and momentum is such a big part of this game, just in terms of the confidence in the huddle and the confidence of different players and feeding off the defense or vice versa.  So I think that was the biggest thing is we made a few plays and then rode that momentum. 

(on physical plays from the wide receivers and cornerbacks and the change on his decision making)

No, I mean, we played a good defense today.  We knew coming in, you know, that these guys if you look at the efficiency on third down, the yards per game, all that stuff, they’re a tough defense.  They do a lot of good things over there.  They are very simple and base in what they do but they do it well and they gave us some problems today because they’ve got some good players over there.

(on the play to Chris Johnson)

That’s just on the fly.  I’m kind of running around and saw CJ getting up off the ground and threw it to him and you know, obviously, his specialty is when he gets in space so he made a nice little run.

RB CHRIS JOHNSON

(on the state of the run game today)

I don’t think it was them (Chiefs), I think it was us. A lot of mistakes were made on our half. This is just a work in progress. We need to get better. If we want to be the type of team that we want to be and make it to the playoffs, we have to get the running game corrected. It’s on everybody, the running backs, the line, everybody.

(on feeling like he should be on the field during crucial drives)

Of course I feel like I should be out there, but Dowell (Loggins) makes the calls, so there’s really nothing I can do about it.

(on the improvisation that led to his touchdown)

It was kind of crazy because on that play…our running back coach has been telling us all week about cutting the defensive end and getting on the ground. On that particular play, I stuttered and tried to cut him and I felt like the ball still hadn’t been thrown yet. When I got up, he (Ryan Fitzpatrick) was actually about to start scrambling and we made eye contact and he just threw me the ball.

(on the blocking efforts that led to his touchdown)

When I first got the ball and turned around I was actually going to go to the right side, but then the safety ran out, so I came back across the field. I looked to my left and made eye contact with Kendall (Wright), and he got up on the block. Then Nate (Washington) ended up getting the final block. That’s something we were working on all through camp; when our teammate catches the ball or runs the ball, get downfield and get a block. 

(on Dontari Poe being in the middle)

He’s very tough. He was very disruptive today. He’s a good player.

(on the first turnovers of the season and their causes)

I wouldn’t say Ryan (Fitzgerald) versus Jake (Locker) is the difference. I’m not actually sure what happened on the turnover, but I don’t think that was the reason, nor was the weather.

TE DELANIE WALKER

(on the Titans loss)

We didn’t play Titans football today and the Chiefs are a good team.  We got up on them, but they made plays when they needed them and we didn’t. We didn’t execute.  We didn’t help our quarterback out, and that goes for everybody on the offense.   We just were not making plays when they came to us.  We gave up turnovers and some interceptions when we needed to stay on the field.  We gave them the ball back and put them in a great situation to put points on the board.  We shot ourselves in the foot and we can’t have that.

(on the Titans offense not being able to score in second quarter, when they had the ball first-and-goal on the one-yard line.)

I don’t even know what to say about that. 

(on the play of Titans quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick)

It takes a couple of weeks to get the timing down.  I felt like we had great practices.  I felt like everything was on point.  It just goes again, that we didn’t finish.  We didn’t play Titans football.  We didn’t execute when we needed to, and we just weren’t in the right spots.  I thought he (Ryan Fitzpatrick) played a great game.  When we needed first downs, he ran the ball.  He scrambled and made some throws.  We just weren’t on the same page sometimes, and you know some passes were incomplete, intercepted or batted down.  We’ve got to go in this week and figure out what we have to do to be on the same page.

RB JACKIE BATTLE

(on the Titans offensive turnovers hurting the efforts after not having any in previous games)

Definitely.  With a team like that coming in, an undefeated team, we can’t mistakes.  And we made some costly mistakes today. 

(on the Titans offense not being able to punch the ball across on first-and-goal in the second quarter)

We’ve run the ball pretty well, over the past five weeks.  Today we just couldn’t put it together.  Today, down on the goal line, we had four tries to get it in and couldn’t get it in. That’s something we’re going to have to fix. Down on the goal line, sometimes the back has to beat one or two (defenders).  We can’t block them all down there, for the most part.  I sure did my part (on fourth down), because I was driving and giving it everything that I had.  I think someone tried to give me a little push at the end, but we just couldn’t punch it in.  It was extremely close.  When I was on the ground, the ball was like inches away and I tried to reach it across, but they said I was already down.

FS  MICHAEL GRIFFIN

(on the fourth quarter 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty on the Titans defense)

We do what we have to do.  You look at whether it was a bad call or not, it was questionable. Especially being Alex Smith as the quarterback.   If you watch film on him sometimes he slides, and sometimes he goes forward. We’re right there by the white and he steps out in time, and the flag is thrown.  But again, the defense did what we did.  We created two turnovers, but again we were in tough situations and we held them to field goals.  But we have to score points too, and we can’t wait until the second half to get things going.  We have to start out faster.  This is a good football team, and that’s what happens.  We knew sooner or later the slow start was going to catch up to us and today it did catch up to us. It’s football.  You are not going to point a finger.  You win as a team and you lose as a team.

CB  ALTERRAUN VERNER

(on the Titans’ loss today)

That’s the thing about this game, not one individual play makes a difference, but collective plays that happen.  We just needed someone to step up and make plays.  That was the difference between us and them.  They made those key interceptions when we were driving on them, and their offense converted key third downs when they had to have them.  That’s what it came down to.  They made the plays and we didn’t. 

CHIEFS HEAD COACH ANDY REID

(on opening statement)

On the injuries, (Donnie) Avery’s the only one right now.  We will see how things go on the flight back. He has a shoulder contusion and the x-rays were negative.  He’s having a hard time raising his arm. It was a resilient win. I thought the guys played hard.  They stuck to it. There were some ups and downs.  There were two good teams and they played each other. Both teams had a couple of turnovers. There was a muffed punt early.  We were able to capitalize on that. That was good.  Ryan Succop had a heck of a day. He really did a great job.  Jamaal (Charles) down the stretch there, he’s a tough kid, he willed his way through there along with the offensive line in the fourth quarter. My hat goes off to the fans. The fans really controlled that lower bowl there.  We heard them and really appreciate all that support they were able to give us especially down the stretch there.

(on the confidence of the offense in the fourth quarter)

The eyes that I was looking into were positive eyes. Alex (Smith), he wants the ball back and he knows it’s just a matter of time before it kicks in and the offensive line was that way. Dwayne Bowe was a constant energy throughout the game and Jammal (Charles), what can you say? He just grinds it out.  That was my picture, that’s what I’m looking at.   I was confident, I was confident throughout the whole game that we would just get it going. It kept stalling there and that’s my responsibility.  I’m the one calling the plays and I have got to make sure I put these guys in the right position to make plays early.

(on the vertical game today)

They played a lot of man coverage so we thought we matched up okay there. I thought the line did a good job, gave us an opportunity to throw it down the field and let Donnie (Avery) and A.J. (Jenkins), who were in on a couple of those, let those guys get out and roll a little bit. Dwayne (Bowe) had a couple of nice ones and Dex (Dexter McCluster) was just off by a tad on one of them, just over shot him on two of them actually.

(on Marcus Cooper’s performance)

He did a nice job, a really nice job. He competed out there. That’s a good receiving corps.  Fitz (Ryan Fitzpatrick) was on fire there that second half and he got in there a competed and didn’t back down at all.  He challenged receivers.

(on QB Alex Smith’s performance)

This is what you know about him...when you’re playing man coverage there are going to be some that don’t look as pretty, but you got to keep firing and he knows that. He’s a veteran player, you got to keep firing. You don’t get down on yourself and then you’re going to hit a big one. That’s just how it is, that’s how it rolls with man coverage. The guys, the receivers are trying to work it so they’re not always in that same position they’re in when it’s zone. He did that, he kept battling. He’s a tenacious competitor, the kid. I love that. I love that part about him.

(on the presence and poise of QB Alex Smith)

I think that’s big. The players are all looking at him. They look at him every snap. That’s their leader out there, and so, if you’re wavering at all or you don’t have the right look in your eye, these guys sense that, they can tell. So, how you present yourself is huge. When you’re in that huddle or you’re checking at the line and get some hurry up stuff , how you present yourself out there is very, very important.

(on defense in the first half)

Well, Bob (Sutton), I think, had a great game plan and players were flying around. There was tight coverage and they were moving around and we had a little pressure on the quarterback. I thought he did a nice job of moving around and gaining a few yards on us, but I thought all in all, it was tight out there. As far as the coverage, when needed in the run game, they’ve got a pretty good running back, so they were able to kind of hold him in check for the most part. He had the one that Fitz (Ryan Fitzpatrick) dropped to him on kind of a crazy play, but opportunistic as you would say, right, and he got a big one on us.  

(on 5-0 record at this point of the season)

Yeah, listen, we are 5-0 and we don’t…we’re not ashamed of that, I mean, that’s not it, but we also know that we got a ton of room to improve. It’s important that we continue to do that, these guys are wired that way. But, they’ll enjoy it for a few hours here, and we’re right back at it. Starting tomorrow the guys will come in to lift and do all of their stuff there.

(on first touchdown of the game)

I don’t remember the first touchdown, but it had to be a good one. Oh, the special teams. Yeah, that was a muff I thought…I actually didn’t see it. I was back getting things straight in the back end, so I didn’t see the whole thing, but I’m glad we came up on the good side of that one.

CHIEFS RB JAMAAL CHARLES

(on grinding out the victory)

It was a special one. We went out there and played against a physical team, a tough team. We fought through it. I feel like the way we have been practicing this year, and the way we started off practice and who our coach is, we answered it.

(on struggling in the third quarter)

We didn’t get no first downs. We didn’t get the chains moving. When you are coming out in the third quarter, you’ve got to move the chains to make it easier to get a first down. We didn’t do that. I remember one series we didn’t move no chains at all and we went three-and-out. We can’t do that.

(on what clicked for the team in the fourth quarter)

We on the sidelines came together. Good thing we have veterans instead of rookie players. We’ve been there before playing in this atmosphere and playing together. Everybody just came together as a team and I guess we wanted it.

(on if he expected the team to be 5-0)

No, but I am going to say I am speechless right now. This team is very blessed to be 5-0 right now. Nobody expected us to be 5-0. We surprised ourselves as well. I am just glad that we continue to come out here and play games and win.

CHIEFS LB DERRICK JOHNSON

(on coming back to win the game)

This was a game where it could have went down south. We already had the momentum. Second half came, we started slow. They started fast. They capitalized off some of our mistakes and kind of got in the game. They were chipping away at the block in the third quarter. They probably scored 17 points in the third quarter. It was one of those games where we had to gear down and somebody had to make a play, stop the snowball from rolling down hill and we did.

(on coming back after giving up 17 points in the third quarter)

Football is hard anyway. You’ve got to stare it in the face when adversity comes in the fourth quarter. That’s what we did.

(on if he thought the team would start 5-0)

You’ve got high hopes all the time going into the season. We didn’t chalk up wins that we were going to be 5-0 at this mark. At the

same time, we are expecting to win. The big thing is we are getting better and winning at the same time. I can’t wait. We are going to peak at the right moment.

(on expecting to win each game)

The expectancy is there. We expect a lot out of ourselves. With Coach Andy Reid our standard is high. He is not going to let it down at all. I am just proud of our team for fighting back in that fourth quarter.

CHIEFS CB MARCUS COOPER

(on facing a physical receiver in Nate Washington and getting the late interception)

I can’t speak enough about that group of athletes over there. That is a great receiving corps, especially (Nate) Washington. I just tried to go get the ball and play for the team. I wasn’t really thinking about (Washington), I was just trying to make a play for the team.

(on if he feels the defense is put in a position to shoulder the load for this team)

I’m not sure. I just go out there and do what I’m told. I go out there and try to execute the defense. This is a great unit. From the d-line, to the linebackers, to the DB corps, we are all working together. So far we have been successful at it.

(on when he began to feel comfortable playing cornerback)

It is something that is new to me. I have never played corner in my life, so up until that point it was something I had to work on, which I am still working on it now. Still, sometimes I am uncomfortable out there, but I just have to trust my technique and trust what the coaches are telling me.

(on scoring the touchdown on the punt return to give the Chiefs the early lead)

It was an amazing feeling. He pushed the guy into the ball and it bounced off his foot and I just saw it there and jumped on it. I saw that I was in the end zone and I was just happy about it. It was a great feeling.

(on the team’s 5-0 start)

Any win in the NFL is hard. I am blessed that we just continue to stack them up, and hopefully we’ll continue to keep rolling.

CHIEFS WR DEXTER McCLUSTER

(on having special teams success against the Titans)

As a special teams unit we knew that they played fast. They play sound, and they are physical. We wanted to match their intensity today. We got some good things going, and I am very happy with the outcome. A win is always great.

(on being 5-0)

5-0 feels like a dream, but this is reality. It feels good. We put in so much work throughout the week as far as on the field and off the field, and just to see it show on the field, it’s just a great feeling.

(on overcoming adversity in the second half to come back to score 13 unanswered points)

With us, we know it’s a long ballgame. You have to play four quarters, and we knew all we had to do was win that fourth quarter when it meant everything. I think everybody rallied together, had some key plays like Dwayne Bowe catching the ball on the one yard line and doing some great things. I think we played fearless and we wanted to win and we fought for it.

CHIEFS K RYAN SUCCOP

(on having a big game with four field goals)

It was awesome. I’m really proud of Dustin (Colquitt) and Thomas (Gafford). I was really pumped that Dustin was able to come out and hold for me. People don’t realize how big of a deal that is, and he toughed it out. Obviously, he was a little banged up and he came out and held and did a great job and fortunately we were able to go out there and make some big kicks today and go out there and put the game away there in the end and praise God.

CHIEFS QB ALEX SMITH

(on having to come from behind in the fourth quarter for the first time this season)

I do feel good about things. I knew that with the style of the way the game was going and the style of defense they were playing, you are literally this far away at any given time from hitting one of those passes. A guy breaks a tackle, and you are off the races. You saw it there with them in the second half. The defense is playing great and then two plays and they have the momentum. It was like in the first half, but there in the third quarter we would have liked to have been more productive. We came back when we had to. We moved the chains. The defense gave us some good field position and then we got that score in the end.

(on his teammates saying that they saw something in his eyes that they have never seen before)

I think you get in those situations enough as a quarterback, and I feel like I have played in a lot of tight games over the years. With eight minutes or ten minutes left in the fourth you don’t press. You just go out there and do your job. You just kind of focus that much more and you bring the guys in that much more and know you are only one play away. Really, that was my mindset. Go out there one play at a time and you don’t know which play make is going to be the difference maker.

(on if this game will provide something to build on)

No question, I think it helps. Anytime you get in these situations and you overcome it and you play well…this was a first for us this year being down in the fourth quarter and having to have a game-winning drive and we were able to put it together. The defense sealed the deal along with the special teams. These are great experiences to have, especially being together for the first time on offense. Great experiences to build on.

(on the defense having the goal line stand and then the long pass to Donny Avery)

The defense, huge goal line stand. That was a big swing there, and it could have been even bigger if we could have finished that drive off with a touchdown. That is a 10-point swing with the defense holding and then us moving it all the way down and getting a field right before half. Big, big shift in the game there. We would have loved to somehow come up with a score there and make that a 14-point swing and give ourselves an even bigger lead. I thought that was a big difference in the game.

(on how the offense went today)

I was trying to take what the defense gives you and they presented some opportunities down the field. We looked at it and learned from it and we did some good things and there are some things that we can look at and get better at.

(on how stretching the field helps the offense)

You have to threaten them with the style of defense that they are playing. It’s a give and take and you have to get yours and you have to be able to make the plays. When you make them, they have to be big plays. They have to be game changers. We had some there in the first half and didn’t have enough in the second half, but we had the one that counted with the drive that got us on top. They are a good defense, especially playing at home here with the noise and it was a wet day. It was tough conditions, but I thought the guys played great. It was such a great team win all around. I thought the defense played well in the third quarter. Special teams played great all day, and I thought the offensive line, once again, really took that on the game-winning drive.

(on not being as sharp to start the game and if it was the coverage)

They were mixing it. They are good up front and they are pressing outside and they are trying to disrupt their timing and it’s hard to get the ball out on time. It’s such a fine line there playing that kind of defense. It’s such a fine line between big plays on offense and then you are just that far off. They are jamming you and pressing you outside and they are bringing pressure and you really have to be on top of it. You really have to be on top of it on the perimeter unit in the passing game.

(on getting out of the pocket and making a big play)

I wasn’t doing anything conscious I guess to stay in there. In fact, it’s the opposite. All day I was telling myself, in that man-to-man coverage a lot of times there was no one for me and I could get out. A lot of times the way they are rushing, they were very consistent in their lanes and not doing any twists to let me get out of there. It wasn’t anything I was consciously trying to do. I was just aware that if I could I would get out of there and try to make a play with my legs.

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