INTERIM HEAD COACH DARRELL BEVELL
Sunday, January 2, 2022
Postgame Press Conference
Q: Hey, Darrell, obviously not the kind of result you wanted today. Was there a point during the game where you considered sitting Trevor Lawrence down, and if not, is there sort of a criteria in your mind where you think about getting him out of the ball game?
DB: There was a conversation there in the fourth quarter just about if we wanted to pull him out and give C.J. [Beathard] an opportunity, but really some of these experiences that he is having are experiences that we think that he needs to go through just to continue to get better. We were able to put a drive together there, and we ended up scoring a touchdown. It ended up working out in our favor. It was important, obviously, that we protect him and do those things in that drive, but I thought it worked out okay.
Q: What are you saying to the guys when they're in the middle of this game and it's gotten out of control that quickly and you have dealt with all this stuff over COVID the past week?
DB: My biggest message to them was – I mean, we had a lot of different guys playing, and guys were getting different opportunities, and a lot of these guys have fought really hard their careers to be able to get this moment that they had, and I wanted them to just continue to play, continue to work for one another. It's not an easy situation for anybody, but the thing that we are playing for is we're all playing for the Jacksonville Jaguars, but also the name on our back, and everything that we do is being evaluated, and you have an opportunity to go out. You need to be able to put forward your best showing, and you need to continue to play and give us everything you have.
Q: Is the game today a little bit of, I guess, a microcosm of this franchise is a bit in disarray at this point, and you have one of the more stable franchises in the league with the Patriots and how things can be so different for two rookie quarterbacks?
DB: Really, Mike, I'm not worried about all that. I'm just worried about this one team and this one game and really focused on a week-to-week basis and trying to do the best we can. I mean, there's a lot of circumstances and things these guys are fighting through, and I'm just asking for them to give me their best at all times. That's what we're hoping for. It didn't work out for us today. We didn't protect the ball on offense. We couldn't get a stop on defense, and that made it a tough day.
Q: Coach, just especially on defense, I mean, it was an almost choosing up sides in the playground. You looked around yesterday or today and saw what you had, and is it difficult to slap together a cohesive unit given everything you've been through?
DB: Like I said, it's been a rough week, but other teams have had these challenges. I don't know what it ended up; 20-something guys that we had on the COVID list. Some of the guys fought back hard to be able to get back. Some of them weren't at full health even as they're playing, but they wanted to be out there. They wanted to play. And Trent [Baalke] had a tough challenge as well to put guys on the field that gave us the best opportunity. So I thought these guys came out, they played hard. I didn't see them quit. Again, I want to look at the tape. They broke out a long run there in the fourth quarter, and I saw five Jaguars trying to run them down and giving us full speed. Josh Allen is one of them from the back side. That's what you want from these guys. You want them to continue to keep working.
Q: I know without looking at the tape and, again, it can be hard to judge an offensive performance, but how did you feel about what Walker Little did out there today considering it was his second career start?
DB: It's going to be hard for me to evaluate it right here. I thought there were some good things that we did. Trevor wasn't under a lot of pressure. There was a couple of early sacks that we had, but I want to go back and look at the tape before I talk too much about individual performances.
Q: Did you feel like today was something that – a challenge the offensive line answered given how many people were out?
DB: It was a tough job. At the beginning of the week I thought we were only going to have one guy out there from our starting line-up, but we were able to – like Andrew Norwell is one of those guys that fought back hard to be able to play for us, and he just barely got a small workout in yesterday, and he came out ready to play today. It is what it is. It's a situation that we had. I thought the guys battled. I thought we did a really fair job of protecting him for the most part of the day. The problem was the turnovers. You could see that we had some continuity in our drives. We were moving the football, but when one ball goes through our hands and we throw them another one, it makes for a tough day.
QUARTERBACK TREVOR LAWRENCE
Sunday, January 2, 2022
Postgame Press Conference
Q: Darrell just said that they thought about potentially pulling you towards the end of the game and putting C.J. in, but he said that he feels for you to grow, they kind of made the decision that you have to go through this. What was it like going through this one?
TL: Yeah, obviously, it wasn't a good day for us. Just didn't play well in all phases of the game. It sucks when you go out there. You prepare for the game and to go out there and just not perform, it's disappointing. Just got to regroup, got to go flip the page, turn it over, get ready for the Colts, but it's definitely frustrating.
I know for me I feel like I really started off the game pretty well. I felt great throwing the ball. I thought we had them on their heels the first two or three drives, and then from there I had a couple -- I had two bad plays that were picks and I just wish I had those back. The other pick was a tip to the guy. Can't do much about that. Yeah, I wish I had those two plays back. Weren't good decisions by me. Put our defense in a tough spot. Then they really just dominated the game, and you've got to admit that after that performance, we've got to regroup and get better, play better next week.
Q: Have you thought at all about maybe if you had been pulled later in the game, do you think that would have provided a different level of insight for you? Is that where you might be at?
TL: No, not really. I came here to play the game, and I want to finish, and I was glad we got that last possession to at least put something together offensively and finish on a positive note. It wasn't a good day, like I said, but the finish and score there was nice. We put together a nice drive, and guys didn't quit. You look around that locker room, it's disappointing coming in there after a game like that. It's a bad feeling. Just doing everything we can to ensure that doesn't happen again, but for me when I'm in the game, I want to finish, and then just growing from there. Similar situation in Tennessee as today, but Tennessee I threw another turnover late in the game, just forced it, kind of got desperate, and today I was happy with at least that last drive where I thought I managed the situations.
Our guys did a nice job. [Laquon] Tread [Treadwell] had a great physical catch there at the beginning of the drive. We ran the ball well. Dare [Ogunbowale] did a great job on the screen at the end. It was good to at least finish there. Obviously, like I said, a couple of plays I want back. Can't get them back. You've got to execute in the moment, so just got to get better.
Q: What gets said in the locker room after one like this? Much of anything or everything?
TL: It depends. Today, obviously, like I said, it's not a good feeling being in that locker room after a game like that, but just Coach Bev talked to us for a second, and at that point, like I said, there was a positive. We kept fighting, finishing offense, but other than that, there's not many positives. You just got to move on. I'm learning you've got to have a short memory in this league. Sunday is coming quick, the next one. You've got to flip the page. Obviously, we're going to watch the tape. We're going to watch tape tomorrow and then learn everything we can from it. There will be some learning every game there is, but we really just have got to get ready to beat the Colts. After a game like this, you've got to really flip the page quick and just definitely not let that get in your psyche. You got to keep playing with confidence and forget about it.
Q: Are you kind of ready for the season to be over? Second part of that is, where is your confidence level that this thing can get fixed with the current people who are making decisions?
TL: I wouldn't say I'm ready for the season to be over. When that comes, obviously, it's going to be nice to take a breather and really take in everything that's happened this year. It's been a wild year, but really, I kind of want some more opportunities to finish strong. We've got a lot of guys, like I've said before, that work really hard, deserve to win. Really just disappointed. That's kind of my feeling right now. I'm just disappointed the way we played today because I know the guys in that locker room, I really just want to be better for them. I definitely wouldn't say I'm ready for the season to be over, but yeah. Second part of your question? I'm sorry.
Q: Confidence level of the people making decisions to get this thing right.
TL: Obviously, I haven't been here that long. I've been here for a year. We'll see in this offseason. That's something, like I said, we've got one more left, and I'm putting everything I have into this last game and trying to get a win and finish strong with these guys and end on a positive note.
But, yeah, I haven't been around the NFL long, so I really still don't even know how everything completely works, but I'm just trusting who is in leadership positions. At the end of the day my job is to be a quarterback and to lead this team, and I can only do so much, and that's what I'm going to do. Other than that, I'm just going to put my head down, go to work, and I have faith that we are going to come out in a way better spot next year than we are right now. I 100% believe that, and I'm just looking forward to doing that because a lot of these guys deserve it.
Q: You just touched on it, but talk about one little bright spot is how hard Laquon Treadwell is going to the ball and making catches in traffic and being physical out there.
TL: Laquon is playing great. I'm really happy for him. He is a guy that was on practice squad at the beginning of the season for a while. Can't remember how many games it was. Just has always been a competitor. If you look at his journey, he has had a lot of ups and downs. It's interesting just talking to him. His wife and Marissa are close friends, so we spend a lot of time together, and he has a really good perspective. He has kind of been through a lot of ups and downs, and really just keeps his head down and goes to work, and this year, obviously, he has had most of his action late in the season, but he just kept being the guy that's consistent every day. Like I said, he fights for the ball. He has made some great plays the last few weeks, and just feel great about him and where his confidence is at, and my confidence in him has been really good, and you kind of see that.
Q: A question on the leadership on the team right now. Is there enough vocal leadership? Is there enough veteran leadership that you feel comfortable with the way things are wrapping up here? Obviously, play on the field is one thing, but how you handle it off the field is another?
TL: Are you talking about within the team of players?
Q: Players, yeah.
TL: Players, obviously, I'm included in that group, and just trying to have conversations with the guys, one, like I said, flip the page. Let's go and finish strong. We have one more week left. I don't want to hear -- no one really has, but I don't want to hear anything about offseason. We've got a week left. Let's put everything we have into this and feel good about it. You want to go in the offseason feeling like you left everything out there. That's for one.
Just having those conversations with the other leaders on the team has been great. Obviously, we're missing a lot of them today that are out with COVID, so a lot of them aren't on the trip. Communicating that with the guys, and then, yeah, I think our leadership has been solid this year. Obviously, maybe that's something we need to have a little bit more leadership, more vocal leadership. Obviously, our play on the field hasn't been what we wanted it to be, so I think really just grooming our mindset especially this offseason and going into next year is doing everything we can to win, and that being the focus, and that's really all it's about. I have confidence, like I said, that we're going to get there, but just really everybody getting mentally prepared when next season hits. Let's go put everything we can in to go win every game.
Q: Leading off of that, you have had more games that have been non-competitive losses this year than you probably ever had losses previous to this, just games where they got away from you. What have you learned from those games that you think will help you in the future?
TL: The games we've lost by a lot you're saying?
TL: Just really people look at the final score, look at the stats, look at all those things, but when you are in the game, you see how close it is, how small the margin is, and it can get away from you fast. Just realizing the game is played with momentum especially in this league. Momentum is huge. Really, for me today where I'm disappointed, obviously, their offense had a lot of momentum early. Scored on the first consecutive possessions. I don't know how many it was. For us we were driving the ball, and then, like I said, the turnover -- the interception off the tipped ball, can't do much there for me. But then after that, get the ball back, start going on another drive, and I throw one to J.C. Jackson. That situational football is where they got a little bit of momentum. Let's put together a good drive. Let's eat some clock, keep moving the ball. And that throw, I would love to just throw it away and keep the drive alive. We had just converted a big third down. That's one example from today of where I can do a better job, is taking care of the football and giving our defense a chance to regroup and get ready for that next possession instead of having another sudden change where they've got to run out there on their minus 40 and go play defense again. That's tough. I've learned a lot. I've learned just to keep your head down, keep working.
And I've also learned, like I said, just about how small the margin is, and it looks like it's big after the game, but really, there's plays here and there, and I think just the game is so mental on this level, and the teams that are really good and play together are all on the same page, and they're super prepared, and that's a step that I think we need to take.