HEAD COACH BRIAN FLORES
POSTGAME VIDEO CONFERENCE
September 13, 2020
Q. I wanted to ask your thoughts on how Ryan Fitzpatrick played today?
BF: Had some spurts there where we're moving the ball, but obviously with turnovers, those are huge. I mean, we talk about that a lot as a team. It's tough to win when you turn the ball over. But I do think he had some, put some drives together. We need to finish the one. Just too many turnovers at the end of the day.
Q. Coach, they ran for over 200 yards. What did you think of the run defense and the ability to stop Cam Newton?
BF: We have to do better at run defense. Obviously the quarterback was an issue. Yeah, we've got to do a better job.
Q. Wanted to ask you, we saw a lot of Myles Gaskin today. Was that the game plan? Was that because Jordan Howard was injured? Or was it just the plan to play him over Matt today?
BF: When Myles practiced well, there's a rotation there at the running back with Howard and Matt. (Indiscernible) got a few snaps as well. We had a couple of good runs, good plays in the passing game as well, so we left him in there.
Q. What can you say about Jerome Baker's day? He had the stop at the goal line with N'Keal Harry. (Indiscernible) had the touchdown and the penalty with Edelman on the final drive there. What can you say about his up-and-down day?
BF: It's a team game. It's not one guy. It's not just Jerome or Fitz. We've got to do a better job as a unit and as a team offensively and defensively and in the kicking game. We didn't do enough to win today. We've got to do a better job. We'll go back, learn from the tape. We meet on this tomorrow and close the book on this one and move on to the next opponent.
Q. Without the benefit of reviewing the game on tape, looked like the offensive line held up pretty well. What was your assessment?
BF: I thought from a protection standpoint we were okay. We had the one sack late in the game. But other than that we're able to protect. He time in the pocket. It's a good rush, good secondary.
But, again, that part of it, it's a team game, so you can play well in one phase and not play well in other phases. And not good enough.
Q. What were your first impressions of Brandon Jones slotted in here and his first start?
BF: We -- I thought he had an up-and-down game without reviewing film. He's practiced well. Stuck him in there, thought he made a couple good tackles in the open field and did good job in the kicking game from what I saw.
We'll go back and learn from the tape. Again, he's a rookie, first NFL game. He'll learn from it just like all the other rookies.
Q. Curious, you mentioned Cam Newton's running. How much of their 217 yards was based on that and how much was just out muscling?
BF: It was based on a lot of things, bad technique, bad tackling. We've got to clean up a lot of things in the run game, which obviously that will be a focus this week.
Q. Do you have a status update on DeVante Parker? We saw him leave not come back.
BF: He's in there. We'll take a look at him over the course of the week. I don't have a status update. Obviously he didn't return, so we'll see what it looks like tomorrow and in the coming days.
Q. Wanted to ask about the last drive. Did you consider kicking a field goal earlier or was it all long you were going to go for the touchdown? And also do you think that Gesicki was (indiscernible) with that last throw?
BF: We were obviously trying to score a touchdown. If we didn't pick up the last one we would have kicked the field goal. Unfortunately the ball was picked off; whether they made the call, didn't make the call. Not much we can do. We've just got to live with the calls that are made or made on the field.
Q. What was the view on the field of Preston Williams on those two interceptions from Fitz in the first half, the one where he kind of lost his footing, at least one of them, and one he was jammed up by Gilmore? What did you see on those plays?
BF: I have to go back on the film. All I had was the tablets. Didn't look up for the replay. We were just kind of moving on to the defensive side of the ball. I'll be able to tell you that probably more tomorrow.
Q. How did Xavien look to you, and obviously it seemed as though there was a rep range that you guys wanted to stay within; is that right?
BF: Again, I'm not going to be able to say how it looked until I watch the tape. But, yeah, we wanted to, obviously coming off the injury, no preseason, no games, just wanted to get the three guys in there along with Perry. So I think we got that accomplished. And I'll be able to have a better evaluation once I watch the tape.
Q. You just touched on it but without the benefit of having the preseason, I'm curious of your evaluation of kind of the first time these guys got to live tackle and their conditioning from that standpoint.
BF: I thought overall the tackling could have been better. The conditioning could have been better. Obviously without -- we're not going to make any excuses on whether we had preseason games. They didn't have any preseason games either. But all things we can improve on. We can improve the tackling, improve the run defense. We can improve the conditioning. Gonna work on those things over the course of the week and we've got a tough opponent next week and we'll get back to it.
Q. Could you walk us through that play near the end zone on our side where you kind of made like a last-second effort to carry the ball forced a fumble gave your guys an opportunity to get the ball back there?
BF: Just go to the ball run to the ball that's all it was. We preach about that every day. So you just run to the ball just try to come up with it.
Q. Seems like a play one way or the other with Ricardo what happened on the late hit did you go back to the sideline and I guess there was unsportsmanlike?
BF: The penalties are unacceptable especially on my end. The delayed hit. I really lost track of the sideline. And whatever the last play, I can. A lot of commotion I'm trying to get up. But my penalty was definitely unacceptable.
Q. You had a lot of tackles but in general, can you talk about what you think the reason was that they had so many rushing yards, particularly Cam?
BF: We've just got to play together. We've got to focus on the stopping the run and we've also got to play together and just play disciplined. Came up short today. But it's going to be a long season. So we just definitely gotta get on top of that.
Q. Seemed like you and Cam definitely got into it with the sideline hit in the first half and then kind of at the end of the game there. What was it like going against him today?
BF: He's a competitor. One thing about him, he's a competitor. I'm the same way. So definitely a tough game but also we've got to figure out a way to come out with the win. Yeah.
Q. How tough was that read option that Cam was running, how tough was that to cover?
BF: It was definitely something different. It was definitely tough. But ultimately we've got to make adjustments. We've got to get it handled. We definitely want to go back to the drawing board and focus on that. But just gotta look at we make mistakes at but also we've got to get better.
Q. I know you touched on Cam a little bit. And I'm sure defensive game plan for him but what he could do today still running the ball 75 yards, two touchdowns, was that a surprise to you?
BF: I wouldn't say it was a surprise. Cam's still Cam former MVP. We definitely respected his talent on the field. So we just have to play together as a defensive. Today we got a little sloppy. A little undisciplined but also we've got to come together and play better defense.
Q. Obviously I believe it was 17 tackles and you got the number I guess from a team standpoint that stands out 217 rushing yards. Did you know they had that many rushing yards when you're in a game like that?
BF: It's not exactly you know how many yards they get exactly. But as a defense we know they were on the ball. So we definitely have to go back to the drawing board put emphasis on that. But we definitely came up short today.
QUARTERBACK RYAN FITZPATRICK
POSTGAME VIDEO CONFERENCE
September 13, 2020
Q. Ryan, what are your thoughts on your play today*?* Obviously the three interceptions stand out to us.
RF: Yeah. You can't do that and win games in the National Football League. We're going against the Patriots, you know you have to take advantage of the possessions you get. And having a couple of turnovers there doesn't help. But I thought up front we played well. I gotta play better in my part and then we'll move on to next week.\
Q. On those turnovers, Ryan, what happened with some of those passes? It looked like tight coverage on couple of them?
RF: Yeah, the first one was one-on-one with Preston and Steph and there was some contact there. But that is what it is. The second one, definitely they did a good job on that one. I threw it right to their free player in the middle of the field. And then that last one, yeah, just trying to make something happen in the end zone to try to conserve some time at the end of the game there. And sometimes it works out. Sometimes it doesn't when you throw those type of throws.
Q. What did you think about the play of your backs*,* seems like Myles Gaskin got some run*s* early on and got more workflow than what we were expecting?
RF: Myles did a nice job. We broke some tackles. Not only in the run game but in the pass game. He made some nice plays. So that was exciting to see today.
Q. When Preston went out limited how much of a blow was that when you lost your number one receiver - I'm sorry DeVante not Preston.
RF: It's one of those things, DeVante started off doing some nice things. And we practiced with all those other guys plenty. So that's something that happens every week in the National Football League every week but definitely can't use that as an excuse. I've got to do a better job. We've got to find a way to get it done.
Q. The guys up front, how did you think Austin Jackson and Solomon Kindley did along with the rest of the O line?
RF: I'm not sitting there watching them on every play. But I didn't really get touched a whole lot back there. And just in terms of their mood and mentality and the way they were in the huddle, I thought that was all really good to see. Definitely a different vibe out there with no fans. But those guys were into it. And from what I can tell I thought they did a nice job.
Q. I know a lot of what your receivers do well*,* a lot of those jump ball situations*,* but looked like that was sort of the focus of your offense in the passing game. Was that what you guys wanted or did you want some situations where you could take a little bit more shots down the field?
RF: Well, with New England, they're going to do basically play man-to-man in those type of situations. And so a lot of times they are going to be those tight contested throws. And some of them we got some PI calls on. Some of them we completed. And some of them we didn't. They're tough. They do a good job. They definitely have a better secondary. They play well together. And I would say their secondary played better than I did today.
Q. Fitz, you just touched on there not being fans out there, feeling kind of weird. Do you think it helps/hurts when there's momentum shifts, you guys able to get into a rhythm realizing how quiet it is?
RF: I think it will be an adjustment. It's the same for both teams. So I think we'll both have to adjust. But we had the play in the second half where they fumbled into the end zone we got the ball went down and scored and you could still feel the momentum with that play happen on defense and then how we went down there and scored on offense. You could still feel those shifts. They're coming from a different place, coming from the sideline, coming from your teammates. I think we realized that as the game went on.
Jerome Baker, Linebacker
(On the late hit and unsportsmanlike penalty)
"The penalty is unacceptable, especially on my end. The late hit, I truly lost track of the sideline. That is unacceptable. The last play with Cam [Newton], there was just a lot of commotion. I was trying to get up, but my penalty was definitely unacceptable."
(On why the Patriots had so many rushing yards)
"We have just got to play together. We have got to focus on stopping the run. We also have to play together and play disciplined. We came up short today but it is going to be a long season, so we have got to get on top of that."
(On if Cam Newton surprised them)
"I would not say it was a surprise. Cam is still Cam, a former MVP. We definitely respected his talent on the field. Also, we have just got to play together as a defense. Today we got a little sloppy, got a little undisciplined. Ultimately we have got to come together and play better defense."
Bobby McCain, Safety
(On the adjustments the Dolphins made at halftime)
"With the adjustments, we tried to come to the sidelines, we tried to go in at halftime and make the best adjustments we can. But at the end of the day it just was not enough. That is on us as a team, as a unit, as a staff. We will clean it up and we will be better."
(On what it was like to play an NFL game with no fans)
"It was definitely different. We have got to bring our own energy, bring your own juice. It has got to come from the sidelines, it has got to come from the staff, got to come from the people that are there with you because it is just you guys in the stadium. We will definitely have to do a better job of bringing our juice, starting off fast, and having energy at the beginning of the game."
(On Cam Newton being a double threat)
"Yeah, Cam has been a good quarterback in this league. He has made plays with his arm, he has made plays with his legs. Today he made a lot of plays with his legs. When we see him again later in the year we will be ready for it."
(On what they learned from facing Cam Newton to help prepare for Josh Allen)
"We know Josh Allen is a good quarterback in this league. He has got a strong arm and he is a good runner. We have to be prepared and we have to do a better job of keeping him in his pocket and keeping the quarterback runs to a minimum. They are a good team. We will get the scouting report this week and we will get started on the week, have a good week of practice, and be prepared."
Christian Wilkins, Defensive Tackle
(On making impact plays in today's game)
"Honestly, I just have been working hard all year, all offseason, all training camp and everything to try and get in the best shape to be in the best position to help this team win. Ultimately, I don't care about the big plays if it doesn't result in a win. It is cool to make big plays, but I would rather win at the end of the day. It is all good and fun but I would trade in stats and plays for a win in the win column."
(On Cam Newton and his rush game)
"Cam is a good player and the offensive line is very good, you know just everything, the OC [offensive coordinator], coach [Bill] Belichick, everybody. I have respect for the Patriots and hats off to Patriots for what they were able to do offensively against us. Really, I felt like we hurt ourselves, and we need to be better. You know it's the 24-hour rule in the NFL, you just have to watch the tape and sulk on this one and get better starting tomorrow. That is the plan and that is what we do."
(On the mood in the locker room)
"Obviously, you want to win the first game against a divisional opponent and everything, but I feel like all of us kind of have the same mood. We have to get better next week. We have to flush this one as soon as we can, like I said it is the 24-hour rule and we need to move on and see what we can do better and get focused on the next one."