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Houston Texans Postgame Transcripts 9/24

Houston Texans Head Coach Bill O'Brien and select players comment on their game against the New England Patriots on Sunday, September 24, 2017.

September 24, 2017

Q: At the end of the game, the timeout...

BO: Yeah, I screwed that up. My mistake.

Q: Can't the players, can't some of the players call a timeout?

BO: When we lose, John, it's 'look in the mirror' time and we did not win the game. So, it's my fault.

Q: What are your thoughts on Deshaun Watson and how the offense played?

BO: I thought there were some good things, obviously there, I thought that Deshaun played his heart out. The offense played their hearts out. It was a good football game; we just left too much time on the clock.

Q: When you see what Deshaun Watson has done, how impressed are you with his improvement in each outing?

BO: Yeah, I mean, he works hard. He's a sharp kid. He's a fun guy to coach. He learns, he gets better every day. He works very hard on his own with the coaches. He's a real; he's a special kid.

Q: Did he get better over the course of today's game? Within the game, start to finish?

BO: I mean, I don't know, I would have to watch the tape. You know what I mean, I have no idea.

Q: Coach, Tom Brady, if you give him almost any time, he can make something happen [inaudible]

BO: Yeah, you know, again it is on me. You can't kick field goals in the red area and, you know, we had too many field goals down there. And then we leave too much time on the clock. He's a tough guy to defend; he's done it for a long time.

Q: On that last field goal, did you consider going for it on fourth rather than kicking?

BO: You know, I considered it, but I just felt like at that time that if we could make it a touchdown game, probably best decision for the team. Didn't work out that way.

Q: Seeing Brady do what he did today, are you ever surprised by anything he does...

BO: No, nope.

Q: Because you were caught between a rock and a hard place, in terms of allowing so much time on that last drive, then dropped back...

BO: You know, anytime you have two minutes plus on the clock, and you only have a five-point lead or whatever it was. It's too much time, you know. And I thought our guys fought hard, you know. I think at the end of the day, again, it comes down to me. We have got to do a better job in the red area if we score touchdowns instead of however many field goals we kicked. It's a different ballgame, you know, we have got to do a better job in the red area.

Q: Obviously it is tough to lose a game like this, but when you look at where this team has come, week one, until now, are you pleased with the progress you have seen overall?

BO: I think the bottom line is winning, Jenny. You know what I mean? It's all about winning in this league, it's not college football; it's all about winning. So, when you don't win, it is just on to the next game. Next week is an important week, a divisional game, with the Titans. And, you know, it's a very important week.

Q: Can you talk about the Patriots last drive?

BO: What do you want me to talk about?

Q: What you remember about it?

BO: I mean, they hit some passes, receivers made some plays, we were in decent coverage. Those guys made some plays. The guy threw the ball well. You know what I mean, John, I got to see the film to tell you exactly. So I can tell you the next time I see you guys. But look, they made some plays. They are a good offense and, like I said, we got to get more touchdowns in the red zone.

Q: What did you think about your team linking arms before the game, during the anthem?

BO: Yeah, look, I think that that was something that we decided to do, stand, for the national anthem. To stand in unity. And that's what we decided to do.

Q: Coach, how do you feel about Ryan Griffin's game today?

BO: I thought he did some good things today. He's a tough kid. He's coming back from injury and made some big plays in the passing game, blocked well, from what I could see from the sideline. So, I thought he did a good job.

Q: (About not getting the timeout), What should you all have done?

BO: Should have called a time out. That's all. Again, anything that happened negative in that game is on me. We've got to coach better and that's the way it will always be with me. We've got to coach better. There will never be finger pointing in that locker room.

Q: Do you ever get any credit when you all do something well?

BO: No, no, no, players get all the credit.

Q: Do you regret that challenge?

BO: No. No, I thought that that was a good challenge. I thought that his thigh was down. I really don't want to talk about the officiating today, I really don't. I don't know what OPI [Offensive Pass Interference] is anymore. I really don't, so I thought it was a good challenge based on the field position and based on where they would have gotten the ball based on his flip to Gronk [Rob Gronkowski].

Q: Can you quantify Deshaun's lift in your team?

BO: I mean, he's an exciting player. He's a player that never says 'die.' You're always in the game with him because, you know, he can make plays on his own. It's only his second start, two in a row, on the road. You know, look, like all rookies he's got a long way to go. But I think he has shown up pretty well in his first two starts.

Q: Looks like he's got some things to adapt to. Your thoughts on how meshed [with starters]...

BO: Yeah I think, you know look, we have got to keep building the package. We've done a lot in the off-season. He worked a lot in the off-season, with the ones, the twos, everybody. You know what I mean? I mean, that's out there that he only worked with the twos and the threes, that's a bunch of whatever. He worked with the ones quite a bit. We have a lot that we do with them. We've been working with since after the draft. The day after the draft, or whenever he arrived in Houston. He's been with us the whole time, except for the off time when you can't meet with him. You aren't allowed to. And you know, we will just keep building the package.

Q: Do you think [Brandin] Cooks held onto the ball on that touchdown?

BO: I don't know; you will have to ask New York. They thought that he did.

Q: You know how tough it is to come in here and beat this team, yet you almost pulled it off. What is the difference between 'almost' and actually doing it?

BO: Until you actually do it, you know, I think it is four [games]. And you know, we just can't do it. You know, again, that is something that I've got to do a better job, figuring how to beat these guys. But we haven't done it yet and there are no moral victories, this is pro football, either you win or lose.

September 24, 2017

Q: Can you talk about your thoughts on your performance and how the offense has evolved over the past couple of weeks?

DW: It was decent. Got to capitalize in the red zone. [You] can't give Tom Brady the ball back with that much time and we'll learn from it.

Q: How painful is this loss given how close you were being on top with a couple minutes left then it got away?

DW: It was very painful. That's all I can really say about that.

Q: Do you feel like you're getting better every week every time you're out there?

DW: Of course. Each rep, each snap I take in practice, meetings, on the game field, is always a rep that I try to get better at and try to gain experience [from] and continue that each and every week.

Q: What are some of the things that lead to that? Are there specific defenses their throwing at you?  Are there specific things you're seeing in film? What leads to you being able to rapidly improve?

DW: Seeing different things. Each rep is different in this league and I just try to grab something with each snap I take.

Q: Have you seen how your athleticism has made it challenging for the defenses you've faced in your ability to escape the pocket?

DW: I guess so. I just try to make plays as much as I can when nothing is there and try to keep the chains moving and move the ball and try score points.

Q: What did Tom Brady say to you after the game?

DW: He said, 'Heck of a game - keep grinding,' keep doing what I'm doing. We'll probably see them again.

Q: How do you have the ability to put everything aside? You think you're going to win the game every play and you almost pulled that thing off. How do you do that? You don't mind any naysayers?

DW: No. I just focus on my task at hand and my team. [I] always think positive. We put in the work for a reason to get to this point and you can't have any doubt when you step on the field at this level. You can't take play off, so you have to continue to do that and I don't worry about what people have to say about me or this team. They're not the ones out there playing, so they don't really what it's like.

Q: Are you conscious of how you lift this team's spirits by the way you play?

DW: I'm just doing my job. That was the reason they got me to come here to try to help the team out and just do my job, be the quarterback, make good decisions and try to score points and get wins.

Q: What did you think of the team's show of unity during the National Anthem locking arms?

DW: I'm going to pass on that question. I'm going to stay away from that, all of that.

Q: Are you encouraged by the direction of the offense and how the team is adapting?

DW: Each week is a different week and we've got to continue to try to improve and try to find a way to win. It's a grind and it's hard to win at this level, so you've got to make sure that you take each play as its own and continue to do that.

*Q: As a rookie, how much do you pay attention to the opposing quaterbacks and how much do you learn from them particulary from a guy like Brady? *
DW: Not just because I'm a rookie, but I've been doing that [since] I was at the collegiate level. Each quarterback I try to look at and see what they're doing because maybe their game can help me out with my game. I always try to learn as much as I can from anybody.

Q: What does it mean to have this kind of impact in just your second start at this level?

DW: It's pretty cool, but that's why put me in this position because they feel that I can come help this team out.

Q: Do you still feel like a rookie?

DW: No. I don't try to think like that. I just go out there and play ball.

Chris Clark, Tackle

(On the play of Deshaun Watson and the challenge his mobility presents) 
"He's an athletic guy and he knows how to get out of a bad situation so we have to protect him. We have each other's back. It is one of those things where we do our best but you never know where he is. Some plays it can be hard. [Laughing] It's a love/hate deal but it doesn't matter because we have a job to do and we have to make sure we protect no matter what."

(On the loss) 
"The future is very bright but we are looking at the now.We will remember this day. I want everybody to remember what this feels like because sometimes for a team this needs to happen. It's best that happens now and doesn't happen later so I am excited and pissed at the same time. We can only build from this and we can only be better. I am not going to be down and I am not going to hang my head. It's a learning experience and I'm glad we got through it early. "

Jadeveon Clowney, Outside linebacker/Defensive End

(On the fumble for his touchdown) 
"Tom Brady was moving around in the pocket. We were pressuring him and Whitney Mercilus made him pop it up. I was just trying to make a play, trying to rush the play. It felt real good to help the offense out."

(On the loss) 
"It was very tough, you don't want to lose a game like that, you've got to play all four quarters, and we didn't finish. We thought we had them on the ropes, but we didn't finish. Hats off to the Patriots; they beat us."

(On Deshaun Watson) 
"He's a good player, man. The guy's great, I think he's going to be a great player for this Texans organization. He helps the offense out being out there. We think we can move the ball up and down the field with that guy. We're confident in him, the whole team is behind him. So we just want to keep cheering him on."

Christian Covington, Defensive End

(On the game) 
"The Patriots came out to play and they finished the game. We have to watch film, learn from our mistakes and just move on to Tennessee next week. Any close game like that, it's going to hurt. At the end of the day they finished and we didn't. This is professional football. We have got to be able to turn the page and move on to next week. That was the game plan, we had to take away throwing lanes and apply that pressure, every chance that we had, every opportunity that we had, and for the most part the defense did a solid job of that. It's kind of like déjà vu like last year, we just didn't finish. It is what it is. The cards were on the table and we have to play them. We played what we were dealt and at the end of the day you have to play four quarters. At the end of the game we had a chance too but couldn't capitalize. That's football."

Ryan Griffin, Tight End

(On playing in your home town) 
"It felt good getting back out there. I was out last week, it was tough watching the game on TV. I was happy to be out on the field battling for the guys. In terms of having a good game, it's a loss unfortunately. I've got to do better."

(On Deshaun Watson) 
"He gave us energy, a chance to win, play making ability. Can't say enough about him, I'm proud of him. There were a couple of times I thought the play was over, and he kept it going. I don't know how he saw me way over on the far sideline right after that third down. It's kind of funny working with him in practice; he has a knack of knowing where guys are. He's got a feel of where guys end up after a route."

Andre Hal, Safety

(On Tom Brady and the two-minute drill) 
"We had a lot of confidence, we practice that a lot. We go into every game with confidence. It was tough you know, but we have to learn from it and grow from it."

Joel Heath, Defensive End

(On the team's unity for the National Anthem) 
"I think that is always there, us as a team, we always work together. We came out and we played hard. We did the best that we could do."

(On the game) 
"We are going to have to come in on Monday, watch film, check out what happened and move forward from there. We just have to improve every week. This is another one we have under our belts."

(On Deshaun Watson)
"He's a heck of a player, a phenomenal player."

(On Tom Brady) 
"He's always been a great quarterback. He is who he is. He makes big plays."

(Comparing Brady and Watson)
"They are two different players and two different styles but both great players."

Jonhthan Joseph, Cornerback

(On the way the game ended) 
"We knew it was going to be a two-minute situation. We had a couple of opportunities but we didn't capitalize down the stretch. They made more plays than we did to win the game."

(On if he thought they were going to be able to stop them on the final drive) 
"Of course. As a defense, we pride ourselves on situations like that. We had been playing good all day. We had more than enough opportunities; we just didn't make the plays."

(On giving up five touchdowns to Tom Brady) 
"We knew it was going to be like that coming in. It's like having a game where the ball is going to be thrown all over the field. Our front seven did a nice job of pressuring him all day, but at the crucial moments we didn't make the plays we needed to make."

(On the show of solidarity during the anthem)
"Yeah, it's one of those things where you look around the world today and sports brings all people together no matter where you are from or what color you are. I can remember being a kid and some of those friendships you build through sports last a lifetime and being in a position to help others and educate others."

Corey Moore, Safety

(On defending Brandin Cooks on the final Patriots touchdown) 
"I could have pushed him out of bounds. I am trying to re-live the play and I could have done a lot of things a little bit differently. I need to learn from it and move on."

(On how the game ended) 
"It is a loss and we played our hearts out. You cannot take anything away from us and we gave it our all. We just have to move on and learn from it and come out victorious next game."

(On locking arms at the beginning of the game) 
"I think it was a good way we were able to show team unity. The guys came together and wanted to do it, so we did it at the beginning of the game."

D.J. Reader, Nose Tackle

(On the last couple of minutes of the game) 
"They [Patriots] made a play in the end zone and they won the game."

(On lining up before the game with the coaches) 
"It was good and showed unity. There are a lot of things going on in this country and there are a lot of things that aren't fair that are going on in this country. We have the voice to do it and we did something about it. We showed support and it was big for us as a team coming together and doing something like that. It is tough dealing with it, especially being a person of African American descent and being a person who is black, it is really hard, but you have to deal with it and you have to go out there and show support and show that you support everybody and you are in this fight with them."

(On the loss) 
"It is just losing. It is losing, no matter how you felt, you lost. They made a play, we didn't make a play and we lost."

J.J. Watt, Defensive End

(On the way the game ended) 
"Obviously it's very frustrating. But give them a lot of credit; they're a very good football team. At the end of the day, they made the play to win the game and we didn't."

(On the play of Deshaun Watson) 
"I thought he played phenomenal. He did a great job; you see what he can do with his legs - he can get himself out of tough situations and he can make plays. He's only going to get better with time."

(On if the Patriots did anything differently against him during the game) 
"No, they've been using the tackle and the tight end on me all game. It wasn't anything different and a lot of guys stepped up and made some plays when they were left one on one. That's what happens; if I'm going to take double and triple teams all day, other guys win and that's good."

(On the show of solidarity by the team during the national anthem)
"We're a team. We all stand together and we all care about each other in this locker room.

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