Dolphins Interim Head Coach Dan Campbell
Coach, the Patriots ran the ball 16 of the first 18 times. They carried the ball, they had a screen, they ran a little shuffle pass after that. Did you expect that conservative a game play from them?
"No. I expected that later in the game. I thought they would come out and throw it, do more empty passes, and things of that nature, try to open the game up early, and then come out in the second half and do more of that. It just ... they flipped it. They went the reverse. They wanted to try to establish the run, protect Tom [Brady, QB], and our defense did a hell of a job. Shut them down."
Was your game plan defensively to play aggressive? Looks like you did a lot of different things, had a lot of different looks for them, and when Brady went back in the second half to throw the ball, a lot of it was to try to put pressure on him.
"Yeah, we did. We wanted to be aggressive. But there's things that we've been running all year and it wasn't necessarily new. Some of them you just dust off a little bit. It's just execution. We executed well. What we did in pressure, the front four did a nice job in creating pressure. We got some hits on him. We forced him into positions he didn't necessarily want to be in. And it helps. We were able to somewhat control the game as much as we wanted to. The defense played a heck of a game."
QB Ryan Tannehill
Ryan, what does this do for the season in terms of getting this victory today?
"Well, it wasn't the season we wanted to have but you get to leave with a good taste in your mouth and that's what we wanted to do. It was a big game for us throughout this week. We knew we wanted to come out and play well and it says a lot about this team; the character of this team; the guys on this team. We really didn't have anything to play for but we stuck together and fought our way through it and came out ready to play and put a good game together."
DeVante Parker ... the outstanding catch that he made out there and the way that he's played these last four, five games ... what do you see for him next year? What did you see just in the second half of the season?
"He's got a really bright future. I'm super excited about the future he's going to have. He's going to be one of the best players in the league and I believe that whole heartedly. He's just scratching the surface. As the season went on he finally got healthy. He made a play. The next game he'd make two plays. The next game he'd make three plays. He's playing bigger and bigger and that's what we drafted him for. That's what we want to see out of him and he's doing it and he's only going to continue to get better."
How special was this win for Dan Campbell?
"It was huge. One of the best things he did all year is he kept this team together, he kept us fighting through a tough situation. (He was) thrown into the fire ... the ups and downs when he first took over and we didn't play well for a good stretch and it's easy to be in his position and let guys slip away. But he kept us together. He kept us fighting and that's a big part of why we wanted to go out and play really well today, because of Dan."
Ryan, as a player, will you or can you campaign for a coach and how would you go about doing that?
"I don't know if you can campaign or if that really matters. But I know, 100 percent, he has the support of the locker room. We heard in the locker room when Stephen Ross said a few words to us, a Campbell chant broke out. That's a testament right there to the job he's done and how guys believe in him."
Ryan, whoever the coach is next year, how confident are you that you're the guy to lead this franchise?
"I'm 100 percent confident. Obviously we didn't play, I didn't play, as well as I wanted to throughout the whole year but, you know, we have a bright future ahead of us. There's going to be better days ahead. I have 100 percent confidence in myself and a lot of those guys in the locker room that they're going to get this thing turned around no matter who comes and takes the helm. The leader of this team will still be here and will lead this team to the playoffs and ultimately to a championship."
How tough has this season been with everything that has happened; coaching change and ups and downs of the season?
"It's definitely the toughest year I've had so far just with the coaching change, the coordinator change, injuries. We went through a lot of stuff offensively and as a team. It's tough. When you go through all those things it's tough. You get to see a lot about the guys around you. You get to see about yourself and the coaching staff and really how everyone handles the situation. You know, I'm proud of the way the guys hung in there. They kept fighting, kept battling and played their hearts out today and came out with a win."
How excited is a quarterback to have that nucleus of receivers coming back in Jarvis Landry, DeVante Parker and potentially Rishard Mathews?
"Yeah, we have a great nucleus; especially at the skill positions. We have guys that are play-makers that can beat man coverage, that can get open, and make big time plays when we need it and that's what you want to have. We have some work to do around those guys. I'm super excited to have those guys with us for the next few years at least and the special plays that they are going to make as the growth continues."
What was owner Steven Ross saying when the Coach Campbell chant broke out?
"He was just saying that he was going to do everything he can to bring in the guy who is best for the organization. You know, I believe that. I believe that he's going to give a thorough search and do what he sees fit for the organization. But that's just a testament to how much the guys believe in Dan (Campbell) and willing to take that step right in front of Mr. Ross and ensure that we believe in him."
The Dolphins and Dennis Hickey decided to mutually part ways; do you foresee a housecleaning, coaching staff and locker room going into next season?
"I have no idea. I have no idea what's in front of us. I haven't really thought about it. Honestly, I was a little surprised. I didn't see that coming. I wasn't really looking for it at the time. I was pretty focused on my preparation and getting ready to play each and every week. So I was surprised. But like I said, I have no idea what the future holds and we'll see. It's going to be a big offseason for us in a lot of different ways. Like Mr. Ross said, we're undefeated in 2016 so we're going to be working to keep that going."
DT Ndamukong Suh
There wasn't much to play for going into this game. What did it mean to you to go out and to play the way you did this afternoon?
"I think for me looking at the situation, and like I said earlier this week, it's always important to go out there as a professional and play as hard and as fast as you can. Even though we may not have much to play for, we always have something to play for. And at that point in time we are building and understand what we need to get done, so it was a good way for us to just go out there and compete."
It's been a rough season for this football team. How good does it feel to end the season just knowing you get a little something special like a win like this?
"Like I said, we always want to go out there and compete and that's the most important thing, so that's what we went out and did."
Did you guys expect New England to come out and try to run the ball as extensively as they did in the first half?
"I think you always expect for a team like that or any offense to come up and run the ball. For me personally, [I realized] that's what they did the first six, seven, eight plays the last time we played them, so they wanted to establish the run - as most teams want to do - and then go out there, and obviously when you have opportunities to do play action pass or drop back pass and certain situations, you want to throw the ball. I think that was their game plan and that's what they tried to execute."
Did you guys feel going in that if you made Tom Brady go back and throw the ball, you guys could put pressure on him and make him uncomfortable in the pocket?
"I've always felt that regardless of the situation, if you stop the run then you're going to force them to be one dimensional, and it's tough for guys if you have great pass rushers, which I think we have, to go out there and compete and make plays."
What did Miami Dolphins Interim Head Coach Dan Campbell tell you after the win?
"Nothing, just 'go out there and compete' and that's what he wanted me to do each and every single day. It's our motto."
WR Jarvis Landry
What was the difference today that we have not seen in weeks?
"I think we played a complete game in all three phases and we made plays in the return game, punting, offensively, and defensively. We managed the game a little bit and you know we made more plays then they did today."
Based on what you said that this was a complete game, is that the message? You did play the Patriots was that the message to this team, that you do have some weapons?
"Absolutely and that showed today with the tight ends coming up big on that third down play in the red zone, both of them. WR DeVante Parker making plays and QB Ryan Tannehill making plays at the end with his legs that allowed us as an offence to play with more momentum. I think we were like sixty or seventy percent on third down and it is hard to do that against a great defense, but we did that today."
Did you look around here after Coach Dan Campbell probably spoke that some of these guys may not be here with you and that Coach Campbell may not be here with you next year?
"That is something that I guess, I mean the reality, but at the same time as an organization and a team hopefully, but I will still be here and we have something to build on. In my book we are 1-0 in 2016."
RB Lamar Miller
Do you want to test free agency to see what your value is out there?
"I mean I really haven't decided about that. I am pretty sure I am going to talk to my agent once I get outside or tomorrow. We are probably going to sit down and have a conversation. He was just telling me to finish the season strong and that was my mentality, just to finish the season strong and try to help this team and this organization win."
Did you feel you had enough opportunities this season to really prove yourself?
"I think when I got an opportunity, I tried to make plays. I tried to put myself and my team in the best situation to win games. I think I did a pretty good job but I still have a lot of room for improvement. I'm looking forward to this offseason and just trying to get better."
This season as a whole, I am sure it was disappointing, any other adjectives or words you can describe as a team?
"I mean it has been up and down. Coming into this season we had high expectations on ourselves and it did not turn out that way. We just have to look forward to this offseason and try to find a way to win."