Opening Statement: Okay, we’ll go ahead and open it up to questions. 

Q: Well, Sean, I’m sure there’s not many words you can use to describe that one, but embarrassed probably is one of them. Would you agree?

A: Well, they beat us. Give them a ton of credit. They beat us. I got to coach better, we got to play better, that’s the obvious. This was not what we expected and we’ve got to take a hard look at things.

Q: On Thursday night, there were some excuses made. Ten days later, the defense did worse. How tough is that for you to accept as a defensive coach?

A: I didn’t catch the –

Q: How tough is it to see your defense play that poorly again with ten days rest?

A: Right. It starts up front. It starts up front [and] we’ve got to win at the line of scrimmage. That’s where this game is won, is up front. We’ve got to do a better job there.

Q: What do you think has gone wrong, though, up front? I don’t see much that goes on there but why are you guys getting blocked? It looks pretty easy when they chop up the middle like that.

A: Yeah. There’s technique, fundamentals, it’s always a combination of that. Effort. I thought the effort was there. The guys prepared all week long just like they have in the past. They prepared, they put the time in, and again, give them credit, but we’ve got to look at the tape. Hand balance up front in order to stay in your gap. The gap integrity, I’ve mentioned to you guys before. We’re getting knocked out of our gaps and then we’re not fitting the run all the time the way we need to. That’s where it starts, is at the line of scrimmage.

Q: What does it say about this defense when the Saints went for 24 consecutive runs in the second half?

A: Well, you take pride in what you do. We put a lot of time in. Those guys put a lot of time in. Obviously, they were in a situation where they could do that in the game with a lead like that and then we’ve got to stop it. There’s pride on the line right there.

Q: Coach, on offense, you guys got that field goal right at the start and it seemed like it was tough sledding the rest of the way. Did anything change on their part defensively that you saw?

A: No, not that much really. Again, give them credit. They did some good things but we’ve got to get into a rhythm. I thought we got into a rhythm in the first series and couldn’t find it after that. There [are] multiple things we can do better there.

Q: Sean, this team has gotten a lot of high marks on resiliency and character early in the year. Is this the biggest test they’re going to face now, coming back from this?

A: Yeah, you’re right. Yup, you’re right. This is, this is not easy to take. Not an easy pill to swallow, especially at home. Our fans deserve more and so we go back hard at work to give them more. We’re building and we’ve got to continue to be honest with ourselves when we look at the tape. Like I said before, we got out-coached. That starts with me and we got out-played. Got to take a hard look at it.

Q: What conclusions, if anything, were drawn from Nathan [Peterman] replacing Tyrod [Taylor] late in the game?

A: Well, I’m just going to evaluate Nathan’s play. I thought he did some good things. Moved the offense there. Obviously, got us into the end zone, so that was a positive.

Q: The crowd cheered when that happened so what possibility is there of Tyrod’s job being in jeopardy?

A: No. Tyrod’s our starter.

Q: Were you disappointed with returning [Charles] Clay and [Kelvin] Benjamin and not really getting them to the ball at all? You’ve got two weapons in there and really didn’t use them.

A: I thought we had Kelvin targeted in the first series a few times and the second play, I believe it was, of the game. We couldn’t get into a rhythm after that, to your point.

Q: You did only complete one ball to a wide receiver with Tyrod in the game. How discouraging is that? That was kind of what was happening real early in the year.

A: Yeah, we’ve got to take a hard look at it, just like [how] we’ve got to look at everything else. Got to be able to establish the line of scrimmage first. That’s where it starts, and whether you’re throwing the ball or running the ball, you have to have a good line of scrimmage from which to work from. Like I said before, that’s on both sides of the ball.

Q: What happened to Jerry Hughes?

A: He’s still being evaluated at this point. [It’s] still too early right now to know.

Q: Any key words you can give us from the speech in the post-game locker room? What did you tell them?

A: Just that we’ve got a certain standard. That wasn’t up to our standard. Really, that standard is not changing. It’s what we look every day to accomplish, is to play at that standard, to do our work at that standard and today was not indicative of the standard that we’ve set for ourselves around here.

Q: How difficult is it to come off of a loss like this and then have to play on the road twice in the next two games?

A: You take them one game at a time. One game at a time. You look too far ahead [and] you get yourself in trouble. The biggest thing, we’ve got to regroup. We’ve got to hit the reset button, regroup, and I look forward to doing that this week. We’re 5-4 and nobody said, like I told you before, nobody said this is easy. This is how you get tested in this league. We’ve got to hang together and get things corrected. Get things corrected and we’re building to do that. We’ve got to take a hard look at this film, learn from it, and coach better, play better, and most importantly hang together as a team.


Q: What happened out there, it looked like a disaster almost from beginning to end?

A: Yeah that pretty much sums it up. Horrible game. Our offense didn’t get anything going and that starts with me. Just an overall bad game. Something as a team we have to learn from. I definitely have to learn from this one. Just a bad game overall.

Q: Tyrod, you targeted Kelvin three times on the opening possession but then I don’t know that he had another target the rest of the way, how did you feel about working him into the offense? Was it maybe a plan to try and do it more and it just got away from you, or did you just take what the defense gave you?

A: It was part of the plan but it was also taking what the defense gave me. The defense started rolling towards him and some situations as well too but just a lack of execution across the board passing game, running game, like I said that starts with me.

Q: Quarterbacks watch each other a lot. I am sure you were able to sit there and watch Brees, you guys play a similar style. Is there anything that you learned today just from watching him? He didn’t have to throw the ball all over the place but he was in command.

A: Just managing the game. They converted a couple long third downs that were key to them sustaining drives. I’ve always been a fan of him, but as you watch him over his career he is pretty consistent. That is something I have to work to be better at.

Q: What was your reaction to when the crowd cheered when you were replaced by Nathan Peterman?

A: I don’t listen to the crowd.

Q: Third down, Tyrod, were they doing anything in particular there or was it just a plot of just some long down distance? It just seemed like third down was a struggle too today.

A: Yes. Some of the stuff we’ve seen on film but we also put ourselves in bad situations. A couple penalties early on in first and second downs. Also, just not getting moving on first and second downs put us in third and long. Gotta be better at third down for sure.

Q: Sean said this would be your biggest test of resiliency, and character of this team, which you’ve had a lot this year. Would you agree?

A: Absolutely. Two tough losses back to back. We still sit 5-4 right now. As a team we have to regroup, refocus, and find a way to correct what we are doing wrong, bounce back. We know we have the talent to go out there and compete with anyone but it’s just about us honing in on what we do the best and going out there and making it happen.

Q: There have been times in the past two years, I mean you’ve heard it, people are looking for any reason sometimes to replace you. Are you concerned at all that, that is going to kind of restart, I mean it’s been quiet the first 7 weeks.

A: As far as people I am not really sure who you are talking about. I’ve never played for anyone other than my teammates, coaches, family. So other than that it really doesn’t matter to me.

Q: Did you object to being taken out when you did? I know it was late and the score was pretty lopsided but to this point you had taken every snap it seems.

A: That was a decision made by Coach McDermott. He thought that was what was best for the team, have to move forward from there. Obviously I was pissed at the performance or lack of performance I had and we had as a team.


Q: Can you just talk about the effort of the defense and what the Saints were able to do to you guys?

A: The effort was there. We just, again, didn’t tackle well. Couldn’t stop the run against a team like that with Drew Brees at the helm. They’re going to put up points, like they did. I don’t have no answer for you as far as what we can do. We’ve just got to continue to work and get back to the basics of every man being in a gap and making a play when they can. Guys rallying to it and knocking guys down.

Q: How concerning is it for this to go back-to-back?

A: You don’t want to start creating bad habits or start doubting yourself, and that’s what happens when games like this kind of go back-to-back and you start seeing a routine of things happening so we’ve just got to be professionals, look at the tape and correct it and have a better just total effort defensively in the next game. I mean, that’s the only way. You’ve just got to make the play. That’s what it comes down to.

Q: What is the emotional and mental state of this team right now?

A: We lost the last two games. Got whooped physically. I mean, I guess guys are disappointed, frustrated, but at the same time, you can’t let that affect you day-to-day so you have to get over it and move forward and just come out with better energy and focus for four quarters.

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