New England Patriots quarterback Matt Cassel addresses the media during his postgame press conference at Gillette Stadium on Monday, October 20, 2008.
Q: Can you talk about your continued growth in this offense and how comfortable you felt tonight with three touchdowns-a career high?
MC: I'd like to think that I continue to grow each and every week. The more you run this offense the more comfortable you become. There're a lot of details that you have to be on top of if you want to be successful and each and every week I learn something and [I'm] just going to try to continue to grow and mature.
Q: You got the vote of confidence from Bill Belichick earlier in the week. What does that mean to you?
MC: I have always felt like Bill has backed me and that's one of the reasons that I'm here right now and one of the reasons that I'm playing is that coach Belichick has had confidence in me and continued to show confidence in me, whether it be in practice, whether it be in a game. Having his boost of confidence definitely gives me a boost of confidence because he obviously knows the game of football-he's been around it for a while-so it's great to have that support.
Q: You had a career night, but how did the running game help the passing game?
MC: Oh, goodness. If we can run the ball like that we'll be in good hands. It starts with the running game up front: being physical, running the ball downhill, and those guys did such a great job with the ball in their hands. That really opens up the passing game because then you have to respect the run.
Q: You were successful with the quick step and the quick swing passes. Did you adjust to that a little more in the second half?
MC: That was something that we had talked about throughout the week. It was something we felt we could get some production out of throughout the course of the week, so we went to that a little bit more in the second half and it obviously turned out to be pretty successful.
Q: People have already used the word 'complimentary' in terms of the early part of the game and the defense getting some turnovers. How key was that early?
MC: No doubt. I thought the defense played great getting us turnovers [and] field position. Special teams played great and that makes our job a little bit easier in terms of field position. And then the way that these guys played from an offensive standpoint-the offensive line, the running game and all that all worked together and the best way to describe it is complimentary.
Q: You spread the ball around, but can you talk about the connection with Randy tonight?
MC: It's nice. If I throw it to him and he catches it, that's always a good thing and especially to get that touchdown. And for him-on the screen that we threw-to break a tackle and do that, he's just a versatile player and the more we can get the ball to him, the better.
Q: Young players always talk about the game slowing down for them. Do you feel like it's finally starting to slow down for you?
MC: There're a lot of fast guys out there so- you hope the game continues to slow down as you get more comfortable. And as the weeks go on I do feel like you start to slow the game down and you start to see stuff a little bit easier than when you first go in.
Q: This was a good pick me up after the Red Sox lost last night?
MC: Yeah, I was down about that too.
Q: New England needed this, you know?
MC: Well we're happy to help.
Q: Is the win tempered at all by Rodney Harrison's injury and how is the team reacting to seeing a leader like Rodney go down?
MC: Rodney is one of the best safeties to ever play the game and to see one of our leaders and one of our captains go down-you never want to see that. After the game everybody made their way into the training room to let him know how much we appreciate what he's done for this team and organization. I don't now what the injury or the extent of it is, but we all hope for the best and God willing he'll be out there again