Opening Statement: Alright. We’ll open it up to questions.

Q: Do you feel like you got away with one there?

A: I thought there’s a lot of heart on this football team. Really, to me, personifies this city, doesn’t it? Heart, toughness, blue-collar, and fans stuck with us all day. I thought it was awesome, man. Awesome. It’s tough to win in this league. Every week it’s tight. Every week is tight. Guys stuck it out, played four quarters and came out with a win, so it was good to see.

Q: Do games like this lay the foundation that you talk about?

A: Yeah, it certainly helps the belief, right? These guys, I know these guys play hard and when you play hard, you got a chance every week. What more can you say? They fought, they fought. That’s a good team on the other side, and a well-coached team. These guys fought, man. Down to the very end, the last play, even. Give Tampa credit. They came in here with the right mindset and we took it to the end here. But, good team victory, a lot of heart. I thought there were some good takeaways, things we can learn from obviously. The takeaways were key, the last takeaway included by Tre’Davious [White] there. I thought we ran the ball well, which is good to see coming off the bye. Third downs on the offensive side was obviously key to our success, keeping drives alive and then good to see a young player, Matt Milano, get an interception, a big interception, for us right there in the second quarter, I believe it was; and then congratulations to Stephen Hauschka on tying an NFL record for [field goals from] fifty-plus [yards], I believe. That’s big time.

Q: Sean, on that last play, what happened to Jordan Poyer? It seemed like he was kind of grimacing as he came off the field.

A: Yeah, we’re going to take another look and see. You know, I don’t know exactly. It’s still too early right now. Those are unfortunate. It’d be nice if there was a time clock on those plays just to, you know, after a certain time you’ve got to call the play dead. That would’ve been helpful.

Q: What made it so easy for Deonte Thompson to come in after five days of being here and catch four passes for 107 yards?

A: Right. Well, I’m going to start by giving Brandon [Beane] and his staff a ton of credit. A player like DT out there on the market and they did a great job of being on top of it in a timely fashion so we could get him in and take a look. Give credit, obviously, to DT and to the coaching staff on offense for getting him up to speed. Love his attitude, man. Obviously, he loves that mentality that we have and that’s tough and toughness and mental toughness, physical toughness, the underdog. He embraces that, and that’s what you saw. I mean, he made a huge play obviously late in the game, but also a couple big plays during the game as well.

Q: Coach, the run game. Just, what was working there specifically? It seemed like there were fewer negative plays and they were stringing more positive plays consecutively together.

A: I have to take a look at the film to know exactly. Just, first glance really, we were doing a good job up front, staying on our blocks, finishing people. To your point, eliminate some of the negative plays. We mixed it up at times with some zone, some gap schemes. Big rush, if you will, with the late third down conversion that Taiwan Jones [had]. Here’s another player that, give credit to the personnel department, getting him in here and getting him up to speed at training camp. May not be household names; that’s okay, man. These guys play as a team and I’ll take that every day of the week.

Q: How stressed were you getting there once E.J. [Gaines] is out of the game, knowing all of the weapons they can put on the field and how thin you were getting there on the outside?

A: Yeah, I mean, they did a really good job. They do a really good job offensively. They’ve got weapons. Coach [Dirk] Koetter is a heck of an offensive coach, a heck of a head coach, and they’ve got weapons with two good tight ends and [and running] backs who all kind of had their own role, and then the big guys outside with 13 [Mike Evans] and 11 [DeSean Jackson]. We knew it would be a big-time challenge, defensively, going against that offense. The guys kept fighting. Obviously, it came down to the big takeaway at the end and that was huge for us.

Q: What about the end of the first half? You gave up a chance for a chip shot field goal. Was that just time management?

A: That was my fault. That was all my fault. I thought we could get three plays off right there, meaning a completion or a shot [at the end zone], and then a spike after that. We’ll go back and work on that. That’s all my fault.

Q: What happened on that second O.J. Howard touchdown where he was pretty much wide open?

A: Yeah, you know, they ran what we call a sneak route. They flood the zone one way and then come back where [Howard] hides underneath. Good play call, good design, good play design. It got him loose and so, give credit where credit’s due.

Q: How concerned are you, two games in a row now where the secondary and defense has kind of been burned for three hundred-plus yards. How concerned are you about showing some give on that part of the defense?

A: I’ve got to go back and look at the film. We’ll see. You know, we’ll see. You always want to be critical and look at where we can get better every week. There [are] a lot of areas, a lot of areas, a lot of learning opportunities from this game. We’ve got to get better at that. That’s what we do. We try to improve every week in every phase of our game. We’ve got to continue to grow, continue to get better, but man. What a win. Right? What a win. Great to be 4-2, proud of the guys, and we’re going to look at everything. That’s what we do every week. This is a good offense, too, when you look at what they’ve gone against and the numbers they’ve put up. We’ve got to look at things, and we’ll do that.

Q: How did you approach [LeSean McCoy]’s fumble in terms of saying something to him or not saying something to him and leaving him alone? How did you approach that, personally?

A: Well, we just talked about it on the sideline briefly. Just as a coaching staff and, you know, he knew it. He’s been in this league long enough to know you can’t do that. Expect next time he comes back, he puts two hands on the ball and improves. That’s what you have to do, and I know I keep saying that word, but it’s about continual improvement from all of us, and that starts with me. Continue to get better. I’m just real proud of these guys. I mean, he’s carried a lot of times and I’m going to give him the ball again. It’s not going to stop me from giving him the ball. I’ve got a lot of confidence in that guy.

Q: There’s a lot of players saying that takeaways come in bunches, but usually over the course of the season there’s always ebbs and flows to that. Your team has been able to maintain this pace of takeaways pretty consistently. Is there anything you attribute to that? I know you preach fundamentals, is it more than that?

A: I wish I could say it was more. I know you probably need something to [write about]. It’s fundamentals, it’s running to the football, and it’s working on it in practice every week, and they do a good job of that. Coach [Leslie] Frazier and his staff and players, they do a phenomenal job of that. They see how important it is, and on the other side of the ball, we do a pretty good job also; and I know we had the one [turnover] today, but [we] do a pretty good job offensively, and [on] special teams, protecting the football most of the time. Those two go hand in hand. The guys, the team knows how important that is in terms of winning football games.

Q: You’re 3-0 at home. I think it’s been six years since you’ve established this –

A: [laughs] I love playing here. I do. These fans, I mean, what more could you ask for? These guys love [the fans], the fans love it, we love it; this is, to me, this is the place to play. When you come here, I came here a couple times as an opponent and I know how hard it was. It’s like Heaven for a home team, in my mind. Coaches, it’s fun to coach here. It’s fun to play here. It’s a great environment. This is what football is supposed to be about, right here.

Q: Is it better than what you thought even coming in here?

A: Yeah. I mean, it’s been all that. It really has. To me, these people have a lot of pride in this city and where they come from and you hope every week we’re giving them something to have pride in, in terms of their team [or] one of their teams. That’s why these guys play so hard. It’s a great deal. It’s a great marriage with the guys that play so hard and a city that works so hard. I love it.

Q: What did you think of [Marcell] Dareus? It seemed like he played a lot more.

A: Yeah, it’s going to be hard to [tell on first glance]. Those interior linemen, [it’s] always tough to tell. Got to go back and watch the film. I thought he had a really good week of practice. [I’m] really proud of him from that standpoint. Any further, I’ll have to really go back and look at the film at this point.

Q: Do you think, in general, I mean we talk about playing all of these no-name guys on defense, and now you’ve got offensive guys. Do you think that pushes the big guys when they see these guys behind them?

A: You know, that’s probably a question for them. I think competition brings out the best in all of us, as they say. That’s healthy, that’s good, and I love it. I think that’s a sign of a true team, and we talk a lot about that. Who’s it going to be next week? It was DT [Deonte Thompson] this week, and Taiwan Jones, and who’s it going to be next week? Is it going to be another young guy, like a Tre’Davious [White] getting the key takeaway? Who’s it going to be? And that’s the fun part about it, is the guys come to work every Monday and every Wednesday knowing that [if] they put the time in and put the work in, that it could be them, and that’s the exciting part about it.


Q: So Ty, you didn’t take off and run a whole lot in the last game in Cincinnati. Today it seemed like if things weren’t right you were more apt to do that. I don’t know if that was something that was talked about during the Bye Week, but it just seems like it really puts the defense on their heels and gets them thinking about more than one thing.

A: Absolutely. It was definitely something that I’ve seen over just sub-scouting the past couple weeks. Some areas where I may have took a sack when I could be using my feet more and just try to use that personal clock in the pocket today. Get something and progress down the field to try to make positive plays. One thing we wanted to clean up was negative plays and I think we did a great job coming out this weekend and cleaning that up.

Q: How much was…Was it Alexander they had spotting you a little bit?

A: Yes. He spotted my a couple times throughout the game. Anytime when I see a spot, it’s taking a defender off the field so if I can’t make a play with my feet then their should be one-on-ones across the board. We were able to take advantage of a couple of those plays.

Q: It looked like there, at times you were able to take advantage when they didn’t have a spot?

A: Yes like I said, just the natural feel of the game. Our offensive line did a great job of creating a pocket for me, allowing me to step up and like I said, if there is someone down field I try to make a play with my arm, if not I run my feet.

Q: How cool is it to see Deonte come in here. I know you guys have some history and obviously a little bit of chemistry where he is basically a no name to probably 90% of the people in that stadium.

A: It is great to see him come in and have the game he did. Me and DT go back to the US Hampton high school so I’ve been knowing DT for awhile now. Proud of the way he played. Proud of the way everyone played as a team. The receiver group, of course our offense as a whole. It wasn’t a picture perfect game by any means but we stayed together for it all and were able to pull out a victory.

Q: Did he do anything out there that surprised you? I mean, I am wondering why this guy doesn’t have a job.

A: I mean that is just the way of the league. You can’t really question why and how transactions happen. I am glad to have him on this team and I think we could definitely use his skill set.

Q: How much do you attribute that previous experience playing him as why he was able to come in five days and make some snaps and be such a big target?

A: Just the confidence level. Like I said we’ve had plenty of reps together in Baltimore, not necessarily game reps, but of course preseason reps. We work servicing our defense as well to throughout the season. Like I said just the chemistry. I trust him. I trust all those guys. He was able to take advantage of some of the matchups and he was able to make some plays downfield.

Q: You said, you guys had some fun on the practice squad team?

A: Absolutely. I mean those are fun days. Learn from days and I think ultimately make us the players that we are today. The confidence that he has, like you said as a player coming in just earlier this week to coming out and having the type of game he had. He learned a lot from those days in Baltimore and learned a lot in Chicago and treated this week like a true professional. [He] was able to come in and take care of business.

Q: On the play at the end of the first half, there were no time outs left. What was suppose happen there?

A: Looking back on it, just taking three. We tried to get a play ran and usually with 12 seconds you can get a play ran whether you are tackled inside or getting out and actually get back to the line of scrimmage and spike the ball. But that didn’t happen. Something that we have to learn from. Miscommunication between me, Coach McDermott, and Coach Rick Dennison. It is something we have to learn from and definitely can’t happen again moving forward. That was a big point in the game where we could have got three points. But I don’t think we throwed it, we didn’t let that bother us. Move on to the half we were able to come out after the half and get a drive going. It definitely would have been nice to have a 10 points lead versus seven points. 

Q: What was the biggest difference in run game?

A: Just being persistent. Like I said, the guys up front did a great job of creating space for Shady and you know once he gets a hole it can be special. It was great to see him get going, great to see Mike make a couple plays and even the play on the last drive. To have Taiwan come in and make a play, something that we’ve sprinkled in throughout practice. Complete trust in him and we call him crazy legs but whenever he gets the chance to make a play, he makes it in practice and he had an opportunity today in the game and he did. 

Q: He had to improvise there though wasn’t that sweep outside and then up in there – inaudible

A: He did. The main thing is that we told him don’t run out of bounds. Sure hold onto the ball but stay in bounds. I think his notion of cutting it up was more so him not getting forced outside where he couldn’t stay in bounds. So he was able to cut up and also get a first down so that was definitely key in the drive.

Q: How about opening the second half with a touchdown drive, especially the way the first half ended. How big is that, because that is an area the offense has maybe struggled a little bit coming out of half time. I know Logan said it was a big emphasis this week to start the second half better.

A: Yeah that was something we’ve done poorly up until this point, up until this game. We were coming out of the second half and stalling so that is definitely something we put a focus to. We wanted to come out and finish the drive with seven, finish it with points of course, but with seven so it was definitely a big moment for us as an offense.

Q: In terms of total targets versus catches for ratios, it is still pretty low for Zay at this point. He had 7 targets today and 1 catch, where does that stand in terms of your relationship with him?

A: He had 2 catches, a curl and a X-Y spacing. It’ll come. Just have to continue to keep giving him opportunities. He is a young guy. We are learning each other, he is learning a feel for the game so it’ll come. It is not any confidence lost from me to him, he hasn’t lost any confidence. He knows the type of player he can be. We are going to continue to keep giving him opportunity. Like I said, it’ll come.

Q: With Jordan, where was his confidence with his thumb and also your confidence throwing to him because of the thumb?

A: Jordan was pumped up. He is probably one of the most excited guys, exciting guys, on the sideline and on game days. We were able to get him a couple passes and of course have to continue feeding him the ball. Particularly the first third down that we had, to get him the ball going early was definitely big for him and for our offense as well.

Q: What did you see on the 44 yard pass to Thompson down the sideline? He got creamed there.

A: Yeah it was a cover three. We actually ran the play earlier in the game the game was to cover one and I had to scramble. That was the play where they had Kown spying me but just a different look. We figured that they would carry with the post route and we were able to get a corner take off. Had to step off in the pocket and buy a little time but ultimately I knew once I saw the coverage that, by the way of their scheme, we had a chance to get a big play.

Q: What is the smallest amount of time, just curious, smallest amount of time left with no time-outs that you think you can run a play in bounds and still get

A: 12 is probably the cut off. Probably around the cut off.

Q: How did it feel to be home after basically a month?

A: It felt good. Our fans create a fun atmosphere for us to go out and play. One thing we preach is defending our dirt, and we’ve done that thus far this year. Gotta continue to keep doing that moving forward.

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