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Cincinnati Bengals Postgame Transcripts 10/16

Cincinnati Bengals Head Coach Marvin Lewis and select players comment on their game against the New England Patriots on Sunday, October 16, 2016.


ML: I think, you know, for my summation, it's disappointing that we have a lot of things going right and doing things good, and correct and not finishing things. We continue to be our own Achilles heel, way too often. Whether it be a penalty that sets us back, or more importantly a penalty on defense, whatever it is, third down conversion. You know, it's key to a football game. You know, we got to do a better job. We got to coach it out of us and we got to just keep grinding at it. But it is disappointing and you know, when you play against teams that aren't careless with the football, you got to make every opportunity count. What we are doing offensively, Andy [Dalton] is doing a good job, taking care of the football, but we have got to start maximizing those possessions, all the time, without him getting in the panic mode. Once again, which he did a good job of today. And he continues to keep his eyes where they belong, keep the sticks moving and that's good. Defensively we've got to do a better job, we aren't executing the way need to in order to beat a good football team right now. 

Q: Did you think you were getting control after half time, you scored on the first drive. It seemed it was going your way.

ML: Well, you know, again we moved the ball down the field offensively. We just got to keep driving it and going. And you know, both scores, came after third down penalties on the defense. Two of our three scores that way, so until the end. 

Q: The momentum shift obviously after the safety, it seemed like that 5 minute window beginning with that play, really turned things.

ML: I can't remember exactly the sequence of things. 

*Q: What made you decide to pull Cedric [Ogbuehi] from the game? *

ML: Felt like he needed to settle down and you know, we had to pay a penalty. He had to settle down and got Eric [Winston] in there to settle things down a bit. 

Q: What allowed [Rob] Gronkowski to get so open?

ML: We didn't do a very good job covering him. 

Q: Obviously, part of your plan was coming in and paying attention to him.

ML: Oh yeah. 

Q: You mentioned the third-down penalties. I know that is never ideal, but it seems like with a team like this at home, it gives them extra chances.

ML: Right, and then we get the illegal contact in the first half, we get the holding penalty later. You don't want to give them extra chances. You know, and we got the ball defended. So, we got to do a better job. And you can't be careless, at any point and understand that, you know. That's part of the NFL and doing it right all the time. 

Q: Did you get a sense of frustration, on behalf of your guys, in the fourth quarter there?

ML: Well, I think both these teams seemed a little frustrated, so I don't know if it was necessarily our guys. 

Q: After that safety, their two drives, I think nine plays and 121 yards, in less than four minutes. You were just on your heels after that…

ML: Yeah, I know we dropped a tight end down the field, which was a big play, after that. If that's when that was in the sequence. You know, I think they ended up scoring back to the flat later. You know, you can't do those things. That was a 60-yard drive, plus 70-yard drive maybe, in that situation. From what, I remember. 

Q: Did [Tom] Brady's return make a huge difference?

ML: Not from our standpoint. I mean, Tom's a good player. We know that. 

Q: Coach, the inconsistency of the effort…

ML: There wasn't inconsistency of effort, that was inconsistency of getting things executed and done. Got to do a better job. That's part of winning and losing. 

Q: Can this be a building point going forward given how you have played two-and-a-half quarters of this game?

ML: Well, we've got to continue to coach harder, coach better, get guys to play better. You know, whatever point that comes from, whatever spurs us forward, we've got to do it now because we've kind of put our backs up against the wall here. 

Q: Calculated gamble, on fourth down, on the goal line there…

ML: You go for it to score a touchdown. 

Q: In any game with Tom Brady, do you feel like you have to score a touchdown?

ML: Nah, I feel like I'm to go for it with at any point, against anybody, anytime. I'm going to go for it inside the 1-yard line. You know, early in the football game, particularly. We ended up scoring the touchdown after that because of field position. You know, that's the other side of things, you have the opportunity to stop them, get field position and then continue to drive the football again. 

Q: Most of the game you played better than the final score indicated. Does that matter at all to you?

ML: It doesn't. Because it is disappointing that, you know, we don't play the entire game that way. That you take that handful of 70 plays and that gets you beat. But 70 plays can get beaten, those 70 plays end up going for 200 yards likely and end up making three touchdowns. 

Q: Do you see making offensive line changes?

ML: I'm not going to make any comment here on that stuff. 

Q: Are you as disappointed now, as you've been?

ML: Well, it's disappointing because we came in here to win the football game. And we had opportunities to win the football game. Opportunities in the first quarter, the second quarter, the third quarter and the fourth quarter still and we didn't win it.


Q: It seemed like you had the Patriots kind of right where you wanted them there in the middle of the third quarter. Are you able to kind of put a finger on how it got out of control a little bit?

AD: Yeah, we had the safety and then they went down and scored right after that. It shouldn't have been that way. We should have had I guess, 21 [points] at that point. We were down there on the 1-yard line and weren't able to get it in, so yeah, then they took advantage of the safety and then they scored afterward. We weren't able to do much after that so, they just took advantage of the opportunity. 

Q: When you guys did not get in on the fourth-and-1 in that series, can you describe what you remember about that series?

AD: Yeah, they stopped us. I think that's what it came down to.

Q: You obviously checked to the fade to A.J. Green there - that's a matchup that you'll take all day I imagine. That's the reason behind that check?

AD: Yeah, we had the one-on-one and the guy made a good play. 

Q: What might your reason be for optimism at 2-4 at this point?

AD: [We] have a lot of the season left and we've got to get back on track this week. We've got to take this thing and try to get to 3-4 and then we'll move from there. 

Q: You guys have lost six of the last seven against the Patriots. What is it about this organization that's been tough for you guys?

AD: They're a team that plays really well. I think they're just a really good team and they've been a good team for a long time. They're sound in everything that they do. They've got a really good quarterback and that's a big part of it too. I think that's just why they've been so good is because they're just so sound everywhere.

Q: It seemed like after the safety it really ignited Tom Brady and their offense. Do you have anything to say about that as a counterpart?

AD: They had momentum at that point and they took advantage of it.

Q: What did you see on the safety? The guy just kind of came off a little too fast to really be able to move I guess?

AD: He kind of delayed and came on a blitz and [Don't'a Hightower] made a good play. I tried to get out of it and I couldn't. 

Q: Marvin Lewis seemed really disappointed obviously after a loss, but is there anything about the way the team is playing right now…

AD: When you have chances you want to make them and you want to make the plays when you're out there and we didn't make enough of them today. That's the reason we lost. 

Q: Do you feel like you guys came out with any extra energy today playing against the Patriots?

AD: Yeah, I felt like the energy was there. We knew it was going to be a good atmosphere with this being Tom's [Brady] first game back at home, so we kind of knew what to expect coming in. I thought we came out with good energy.

Q: After that sack was it possible that some of that energy kind of dissipated?

AD: It's hard to tell. Obviously, that was something that you don't want to have happen and they got momentum and I felt like we drove the ball down and had another chance, but we had to kick another field goal and stuff like that. Obviously you're going to lose a little bit of the energy when you get a sack for a safety. 

Q: Do you take solace from playing as well as you did at the start of the second half because you guys were really playing very well at that point?

AD: Yeah, we felt like we were moving the ball and I felt like all game we were moving the ball, but we've got to turn it into points.

Q: Do you feel like you have to say anything to Cedric Ogbuehi? He obviously came out of the game today. He's a young guy, do you talk to him in this situation? What would you tell him?

AD: For him, he's got to focus on being the best player that he can be and that's all you can think about. Watch the film - be your hardest critic and find a way to get better. That's all that you can do and that's all that anyone should do at this point when they're watching film.

Karlos Dansby, Linebacker

*(On whether he was frustrated with the loss) *
"No, I'm not frustrated. There is a lot of football left to play. We have to buckle down and make the corrections. We have another hungry team coming into our home next week and we still have opportunities."

*(On whether the Patriots did anything to get Rob Gronkowski open in the 2nd half) *
"Without a doubt. Some of the things they did, we were anticipating them doing it in the 1st half, but they didn't do it until the 2nd half. We were out of position and we had a couple of technique errors and they got open. We know what we have to do now to finish games."

*(On whether Tom Brady is the best ever) *
"Do you know how many quarterbacks have played the game in fifty-one years of football? That's a long list of greats, but he's one of the greats though. I can't put him at the best ever just yet, he still has a lot of football left to play and I look forward to seeing how far he can go."

A.J. Green, Wide Receiver

*(On the team dominating the play but not the score) *
"I felt like we stopped ourselves. We were getting whatever we wanted, but we just weren't capitalizing in the red zone. That has been our Achilles' heel all season. We have to continue working at that."

(On the goal line stop by the Patriots)
"Yeah, that's tough. Especially when you are playing a team like that. When you have Tom Brady across the field, you need all the points you can."

Michael Johnson, Defensive End

*(On his sack) *
"It was a good play. We had a blitz planned for them and it worked."

*(On the difference between the two halves) *
"They capitalized on their opportunities. They had opportunities in this game and they did a better job with field position. They are a good team and you can't let them do that. They were able to do that in the second half. I just know they came out in the second half and they made some adjustments."

*(On how his team played) *
"I feel we can play better. We have got to keep going, it is a long season. Our best football is ahead of us. We have got to keep working as a team to make corrections."

(On the second half penalties)
We just wish today it could have been called more both ways. I know we are at New England, but it is unfortunate.  I know they [the referees] are not going to see everything."

T.J. Johnson, Center

*(On coming into the game) *
"It's just a role I assume every week so I have got to be ready to go in whenever my number is called and that is what happened today."

*(On the team's performance) *
"I think we have to go in and watch film, it is too early to tell. We've got work to do, we have got to get better."

Dre Kirkpatrick, Cornerback

(On the penalties on third down)
"I feel like we have to get off the field. We have to do a better job on third downs. We just have to go back to the drawing board and clean it up."

(On the game)
"I felt like we played good and we were out there and only down by 3. For the most part we have to work on finishing, I feel like this week is going to be all about finishing. Especially when you are running a tight game plan against good teams and we just have to finish."

Brandon LaFell, Wide Receiver

*(On the Patriots not beating themselves) *
"Hardly ever. The last two years I was here we probably beat ourselves just once in those 32 games. When you get your opportunities against this team, you have to take advantage of your opportunities and when you don't, things like this happen."

*(On scoring against his old team) *
"At the end of the day it's all about winning. The touchdown was good, but at the end of the day we wanted a win and to come up here and get one would have been great."

(On what he thought changed the momentum)
"The third quarter was a quick turnaround for them. They got the safety and then got points. We got the ball back and came down but settled for 3 and they got 7."

Domata Peko, Defensive Tackle

*(On the game) *
"I feel like we came in to today and started fast. We got after them and it was a real close game until the end of the third quarter. Then Gronk [Rob Gronkowski] got going and I think he finished with over 160 yards or something and that is way too many yards for one person to have. Especially in a week where we try and take their [Patriots] key players away. They got after us in the second half and it is very disappointing because I thought we started the game really well today. Last week Dallas kind of got after us so we knew we had to come in here and start fast. I think we did and for the first half I thought we did really well as a group. We went after Brady and got him on his back a couple times. We got a couple pressures where he was running around more than he wants to. But they made some adjustments at halftime. That's what you do during the half."

*(On getting after the Quarterback) *
"In the first half we were getting after him [Brady] and he was scrambling. He was throwing the ball away and that was what we were trying to do. We were trying to get pressure on him early and mess up his rhythm. They got us in the second half and it was a tough one. We just have to look forward to next week and we have the Browns coming to town. We have to bounce back and get these wins going. We were getting after him."

*(On the fourth down play) *
"I've been playing fullback for a while for us. There was a lot of penetration there and they just beat us off the snap. They disrupted the whole scheme we had going there. I love playing [fullback]. That is one of the things we do well here, but we have to score those points. They stuffed us there, they did a good job."

Kevin Zeitler, Guard

*(On the loss) *
"They [Patriots] showed why they are always in contention for everything they do. The coaches are smart they have great game plans, we have good players. We just have to get it put together. It's been a rough start, but there is still plenty of time left in the season. There have been plenty of teams that got a rough start and pulled it together. It's time for us to sit down, get things figured out and get this thing going."

*(On the Patriot's goal line stance) *
"That was an unfortunate situation as an offensive lineman you want to be able to punch it in. Unfortunately they [Patriots] had a good plan for our possible plays, and all the praise to them they did a good job on that."

*(On the team's performance early in the game) *
"I think our team did some growing. I think everyone that watched saw that there was some fire on both sides of the ball. There was some good things happening and now it is time to get back to work and figure out what the next step is."

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