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Titans-Packers Postgame Quotes

Posted Aug 9, 2014

HEAD COACH KEN WHISENHUNT

(on how much did weather limit some of the things he wanted to do coming into game)

Today was a game of adjustments. That is what you had to do. A lot of the things we had planned went out the window with the rain. So, for nothing else it was a good opportunity to work on that. We learned a lot about ourselves and what we have to do to prepare for that. So, those aren’t conditions that you can generally replicate or practice. Maybe we will try it out at Saint Thomas Sports Park one day, OK. You guys can stand out there with us.

(on how players responded to the adversity brought by the weather)

You know what, I think what I really liked was there in the fourth quarter. The offense made some plays to go up, the defense stopped them. The whole team was into it and that’s an important piece. You know, you have to start somewhere. You got to learn how to do that. You got to expect to do that. I felt like that is what was going on. We didn’t handle it as well as we could have early, the rain, but we got to a point where, OK, this is what it is, so let’s make some plays.

(on if weather conditions make it tougher for player evaluations)

Yes, it does. You don’t scrap it because there were some guys that made some big plays in this game. Daimion Stafford made some plays that were big. (Bishop) Sankey, even though the run game he missed the protection, did some good things, the catch on the boundary and the long run after that, the touchdown catch. You know those are things that are real positives. Where it is tough, we have to look at the line, both sides of the ball and see how we can get better in those areas. We missed a couple of protections which is not something that we are accepting. That is something we always have to be better at. But once again, you give the guys credit for playing the way they did and staying into it.

(on Charlie Whitehurst’s acrobatics on long yardage play)

It was pretty good. I think he’s got a feel for the game. I would like to say I have seen him do that before, but I haven’t, so it’s nice to know that he can do that.

(on if this was the worst rainy conditions in game he has been involved in)

As a coach, yeah. I had a game like this as a player that was much worse than this. It was pretty close.

(on conditions tonight changing Bishop Sankey’s role)

We expected to give him some work. You know, things got distorted a little bit. Our rotational plan changed a little bit when the conditions changed. That affected us, but I think what we wanted to see out of Bishop is a good start. This by no means answered a lot questions, but it helped to start to answer some of them.

(on if the defense didn’t have the intensity to start which led to sloppy tackling in the beginning)

I think you are dead on with the sloppy tackling. That is something that we have to correct. Whatever it was, conditions played a part of it. I think mentally, we let the rain affect us starting out, especially when they hit a couple of runs on us because that is something the defense has been better at in camp. So, that is something we’ll work on.

(on injuries to Chris Spencer and Colin McCarthy)

McCarthy probably is going to be out for a while with a shoulder. Spencer’s got an ankle and we’ll see how that is. I don’t know for sure. I don’t know how Spencer’s ankle is going to be.

(on if he was nervous with Jake Locker playing in the weather)

Well, I kept hoping that the weather would get a little bit better so I could see him do some of the stuff in the pocket that I wanted to see. At that point, it wasn’t. Then, I got to the point where I wanted to get him out, so that’s what we did.

(on the extra point missed)

No question, that’s tough, and that’s why I kicked it the second time, and not so much because I wanted to see Travis (Coons) but I wanted the snapper and the holder to work better. It wasn’t a great snap to him, because the ball was wet. I wanted to work that again, going for two there at the end of the game, just to make sure to use it as a situation to prepare. It was tough, it was a tough situation. They struggled, we struggled. Got a little better at the end, but it was tough when we tried to kick that.

(on Zach Mettenberger being evaluated on his turnovers)

There are some things that he can’t do. We’ve worked on those drills every day, protecting the ball, moving your feet, he did a good job of that at times, but he can’t do that. He can’t lay the ball on the ground like that. If it wasn’t an interception, it wasn’t his fault. He made a good throw on that, and it bounced up into the air. Really the thing that’s the most important was that last drive. He really made some good throws on that one, especially one to (Brian) Robiskie in the middle. Just with the conditions, so that says it all.

(on any other injuries)

No, I don’t know of any other ones. Something could come up, but none that I know of right now.

(on penalties)

I don’t think the referees could see it, in the rain.

(on Zach Brown not starting)

Zach (Brown) had a little issue. He did something he wasn’t supposed to do, and that was punishment because of that. It wasn’t a curfew situation, but it was team rule that was not adhered to. I would describe it as pissing me off, so that has to be more significant than minor. In the grand scheme of themes, I wanted to send a message. The purpose of doing that was to send him a message, so hopefully he got that message.

QB JAKE LOCKER

(on the disappointment of the weather limiting his performance tonight)

Yeah, that was tough.  It was coming down pretty good.  Like you said, it kind of dictated a little bit of what we did offensively, especially early on.  Yeah, I would have liked to be able to throw the ball around a little more.

(on what he personally takes away from his performance tonight)

You could learn some things, you know.  I got an opportunity to try out a pair of gloves in those conditions once I came out that I actually really kind of liked.  If we get into a situation like that again hopefully I’ll have an answer that allows you to deal with it a little bit better.  Like I said, we just didn’t have a whole lot of opportunities.   I think our in-and-out of the huddle execution, we didn’t have any problems with the clock.  Those sorts of things were good so we’ve just got to continue to build on that to get the other part rolling next week.

(on if his experience playing in the rain before helped tonight)

Yeah a little bit.  I’ve never played in rain like this.  This is definitely the hardest rain I’ve played in to this point so that was a little different.  I’ve had a lot of wet games that I’ve played in throughout the course of my career.  There are just different things you’ve got to focus on and I think that definitely helped.

(on what it feels like as an experienced front line player to see younger guys score late)

Yeah, it’s exciting.  It’s preseason but everybody in that locker room is a competitor and wants to win.  So to have an opportunity at the end like that to win and watch those guys go out and do it was awesome.  I’m excited for them, happy for them.  A lot of them it’s their first opportunity to play in an NFL game and to watch them go out and have success like that is fun. 

TE DELANIE WALKER

(on what factor the rain played tonight)

You know what?  It’s football.  At the end of the day, the rain was tough.  Going into the football game, we didn’t expect that much rain.  But you have to adjust.  Coach (Whisenhunt) came in the locker room and said just because it’s raining, we still have to play like the Titans.  I feel like in the second half our team came out there and we answered.

(on how the Titans first-team offense played in the rain)

I wouldn’t say disappointing.  We didn’t move the ball like we wanted to.  Again, we have to overcome the rain.  It’s just something we have to work on.  So we are going to watch film and see what we can do better.  At the end of the day, it’s football.  You play in this type of weather and you have to be able to execute a play.

S MICHAEL GRIFFIN

(on getting the win)

You play the game to win.  No matter how you have to do it, however it is, you play the game to win. And it wasn’t pretty with the weather conditions.  And on the defensive side of the ball, we didn’t start out like we wanted to start, but at the end of the day we got a win, and that’s all that matters. 

(on playing football in the rain)

It’s better playing in a monsoon, compared to playing in the cold, but it’s all part of playing football, and you have to be prepared for anything, and you can’t let it slow you down. 

RB BISHOP SANKEY

(on playing in his first game)

I felt comfortable once I got out there and kind of got in the groove of things.  It’s all about improving and looking back and seeing my mistakes and correcting those for the next week.  I was expecting anything.  As many times as they wanted to give me the ball, that’s what I was willing to do tonight.  It kind of just went that way.  We were able to put that good drive together and take the lead.  It felt good out there. What worked for me tonight was finding those little holes and creases, and just really driving the ball down the field.  With monsoon -like weather, as a running back you do get the opportunity to run the ball more.  I think all running backs like that.

(on getting a touchdown catch)

It felt really good.  The first touchdown is something that I’d dreamt about.  Having your first NFL touchdown.  And celebrating with my teammates and just taking that moment in, was really cool.  

WR MARC MARIANI

(on getting the Titans’ 2014 season underway)

It feels really good to be back in football season.  It feels good to come out here and go against someone else for a change, other than your teammates who you’ve been up against for the past three months.  It feels good to get a win opening night and we’re off to a good start.

(on playing in the rain tonight)

I think the conditions were not ideal, but it went both ways.  It was fun, and it was different, and it was still football.  Reminded me of when we were kids on the playground just slopping around in the mud.  It was a good test for us, and we came out on top.

PACKERS HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY

(on the weather)

I thought the weather conditions tonight were outstanding.  Ever since I’ve been involved in coaching here we will do the wet ball drills, probably once a week in training camp you always try to hit it during the course of before the regular season.  To come out here and be able to perform in the real thing, I mean, this is a great experience for our football team.  We know ball security was going to be a challenge.  We probably didn’t do quite as good as we like there obviously by the number of times the ball hit the ground. Our defense picked it up in the second half in taking the football away. To play in this environment, I think, is an incredible experience for us.    We are from Green Bay, Wisconsin.

(on any other the young players’ performances jumping out)

Really the film will tell me that. Particularly with today’s environment, we know we had a lot of communication challenges, headsets going down continuously.  I can’t tell you how many times my pack was changed.  I really didn’t get to study individuals especially on defense and special teams like I have in the past.

 (on not playing Aaron Rodgers)

Aaron’s [Rodgers] situation not playing was more about us having four quarterbacks.  It’s been a while. Historically, I feel like I haven’t done a good job getting the fourth quarterback reps so we made a point to make sure our young players had the whole fourth quarter. So I wanted to give Chase [Rettig] an opportunity. I feel like Aaron has had an excellent camp and phenomenal spring and he would have played one series tonight so it was really about getting Chase a look in the fourth quarter. 

(on using the tablets to communicate)

The tablets were great. It’s really convenient as far as having every series on the iPad, the tablet, as opposed to having a book for each series.  My rule is you shouldn’t have to leave the sideline to go to the bench. It’s something I haven’t had in a long time, having pictures on the sidelines. 

(on the play of quarterback Scott Tolzien)

I thought he did a lot of good things. I thought the no huddle really flourished in Scott’s two series. To have the fumble, and then to really make the play. (Referee) Bill Leavy was telling me they haven’t had that situation in however long. That’s something they always prepare for. Then to come right back and hit the second-and-20 play to lead us down there in the red zone. I thought Scott did a lot of good things.

(on attempting the two-point conversion)

We were just trying to get Scott Tolzien another play. It was expected pressure, we call it 44 double where they double our slots. They came with the empty pressure. I knew we were getting close to the fourth quarter. We talked about going for it on fourth down. We talked about getting some two-point play opportunities. You look at things in the past when you go through an offseason. We practice two-point plays every week. Why don’t we practice them in the preseason. That’s probably something we’ll do more of in the preseason.

(on the play of quarterback Matt Flynn)

I thought Matt did a lot of good things, commanded the huddle. We went to more of a standard offense based on some of the things that they were doing. If my memory serves me correct, I think we had the one series with no huddle. We have to look at the video, but I think both guys managed the offense.

(on running back James Starks)

He picked up where he left off last year. I thought James looked like he was in midseason form. The first drive was impressive. That’s what we wanted to accomplish in the first drive running the football. We were able to do that, and obviously, James was excellent.

(on JC Tretter’s play at center)

To go out in your first NFL start, and you have to play in a rain storm. I don’t know if we could create a tougher situation for a center. You couldn’t ask for that. Talking to players, you remember games like that when you were a kid. It was fun to play in that tonight.

(on Davante Adams’ punt returns)

We need to learn from it. There are some fundamental, technical things that he needs to improve on. It was clearly evident on those two punts.

(on the decision to try Adams as punt returner)

It was just our thinking. You’re trying to give as many players as many different opportunities as possible. You never go into any season with just one person at a position. You can never be deep enough.

 LB CLAY MATTHEWS

(on the first preseason game of the year)

It felt great. It was much like the first day of camp this year. It was good to get out there and play somebody other than my team and get some live action reps. Obviously the weather kind of limited what I think I would have wanted to see for myself personally as a defense. For the most part, it’s a starting point. We will go back look at the tape, improve upon it and move forward.

(on the importance of the first preseason game)

Just about working with one another. Obviously there has been a lot of change around here, especially on the defensive side with players and especially with many of the pass rushers. Now, we get to form a little bit of a base with guys like Julius (Peppers), Mike Neal has been around for a while and Mike Daniels has really progressed. These guys you feel that continuity working together.

(on the weather conditions)

That was the hardest rain I’ve ever played in. That was something else. Your feet was soaking. It was hard to move out there. I think we did the best we could. I guess some positive points we took away. I think we started off 3-and-(out). Forced them into another punt on the second drive. Obviously we didn’t do too well. We had an adversity situation after the muffed punt return, but we’ll improve upon that. For the most part, I thought we did some good things.

T BRYAN BULAGA

(On the progression of the offense)

Preseason and training camp and everything is a process. I think I said that after our first practice. Training camp is for getting geared up and built up for week one. Our first drive was a good start being able to run the football. Trying to get that going. It was a good start.

(On his thoughts of the first preseason game)

There was no hesitation or anything. It’s just go out there and play football. I was excited as all heck going out there playing and being next to the guys. It was fun. I enjoyed it.

(On the weather conditions)

That’s the most rain I have ever played in. That was different for me. By the time we were done with our first drive, it feel like I had an extra 30 pounds of clothes on me. That was good.

QB SCOTT TOLZIEN

(On his performance)

Really, it’s the first preseason game. I don’t want to get too excited. It’s one game. I think more than anything, it’s just exciting for us to play against a different opponent rather than colliding heads with other guys. It’s nice to do it against someone else.

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