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Replay: Patriots Unfiltered Fri Sep 25 - 12:00 AM | Sun Sep 27 - 10:40 AM

New England Patriots Postgame Transcripts 12/4

BILL BELICHICK, HEAD COACH

BB: Well, this was kind of an unusual weekend for us but definitely a good one. Seeing the guys from the '01 team is really a special one, and of course tying that in with the Rams and having a good performance out there today by our team was good. Tom [Brady] breaking the record today, of course what it's all about is winning games. Thinking back to that first one in 2001 against Indianapolis, that's a lot of water under the bridge, but good, good. I thought we had a good effort today all the way around. Offensively, defensively we got off to a good start. We played from ahead. Certainly there were some plays we left out on the field but I thought we made enough of them and turned the ball over. [We] took good care of the ball. It's a battle with the Rams in the kicking game as I talked about all week. They're really good. They did a good job on some field positon plays that we covered well but so did they. Again, that was a tough matchup. But overall, it's good to get to 10 wins so we know we have a big challenge this week with Baltimore, so we'll turn the page and get on to that. But it's a good, solid win today against the Rams. I'm proud of what our team did. I thought those guys worked hard. Again, this week we had a good week of preparation for a team we didn't know very well. I thought we got to know them and played pretty competitively there for four quarters.

Q: What is it about Tom Brady that has allowed him to grow to this elite level where he now has the most wins by a quarterback in NFL history with 201?

BB: I think Tom [Brady] does the things he's always done. He prepares hard on and off the field physically, mentally. He studies film, knows how to game plan, knows the opponents, [and] he's got great experience. Every game he has a couple of plays out there that are I'd say just made on experience. Just kind of sensing something or doing the right thing in the right situation and he's got a lot of poise. Guys are flying around all around him but he's able to keep his eyes downfield and focus on the target and does a great job in the pocket of sensing the rush. It's a pretty long list. I don't think you win over 200 games by just doing one or two things right. You do a lot of them; he does.

Q: How important was that first turnover created by your defense to kind of give the team a lift after stalling for a bit?

BB: Well, I mean we had some chances there in the second half; we just couldn't finish the drives. We had three field goals. We had the ball down there but we just weren't able to get the touchdowns that we had to start the game. Overall, I think we were hurt by too many negative plays. We had some holding penalties, some tackles for loss that created second-and-long, third-and-long. Defensively they do a good job in those situations. They get you in third-and-nine, 10, 12 like we were in too many times. We didn't do well there. That's always a tough down and distance situation to be in. We've got to do a better job of getting positive yards on first and second-down so that we stay out of that.

Q: How much did the Rams aggressiveness on defense affect the offense?

BB: Well, I mean they're a good defense. They have good rushers. They have fast linebackers. We talked about them all week; big safeties. [Trumaine] Johnson's a good corner. [E.J.] Gaines went out but Johnson's a solid guy and they do a good job defensively. I mean, you get 27 points so that's not terrible but, you know, we left some plays out on the field and they did some things to make it hard for us. They did a good job in the second half keeping us out of the end zone and like I said, putting us in long-yardage situations at some point in the drive so that we weren't able to finish it.

Q: How disappointing was it to play so well on defense for three-plus quarters and then ultimately give up a touchdown on their final drive?

BB: Yeah, we obviously could've played that play better. [Kenny] Britt ran a good route. It was a good throw. We just got beat on a double move.

Q: At halftime Lawyer Milloy thanked the fans for honoring the first group to do things the 'Patriot Way' back in 2001. Would you agree that the '01 team helped set up an identity for how you wanted your program run up through now?

BB: Definitely. Yeah, that was a tremendous team. We struggled in the early part of the season. [We were] 5-5 at midseason. [We] won nine straight after Thanksgiving. A lot of those wins weren't pretty. They were just good situational football, good toughness. Just being able to make the right play at the right time. We played pretty well on defense. We were good in the kicking game. We had a great kicker. Antowain Smith gave us a lot of good yards, a lot of tough yards. Tom [Brady] didn't turn the ball over. Troy [Brown] gave us some explosive plays in the kicking game and enough plays on offense to win. You put it all together, that team, they found a way. They played the best. I don't know if they were the best talent-wise, but they played the best and that's why they're champions. They'll always be right at the top for me in terms of individuals that I admire because of what they did. I mean, the deck was stacked against us week, after week, after week; Oakland to Pittsburgh to St. Louis especially. But that team competed for 60 minutes. They were relentless, believed in themselves, believed in each other, believed in what we were doing. It was great to honor them, great to see them all back here – not all of them, but a lot of them – 43, 44 guys, whatever it was. There are a few of us still kicking around here and a few guys in some other spots. Adam [Vinatieri] and Romeo [Crennel] and Mike [Vrabel] and Larry Izzo and so forth, but it's great to see those guys back. That was a tremendous group.

Q: How special was the reunion last night with the 2001 Super Bowl XXXVI team?

BB: Very special, absolutely. That was a great night for a couple of hours just to be able to see those guys again. A lot of them looked good. A lot of them looked like they could still play a couple of downs anyway. It was a lot of fun. It was great to see them. It was just a great opportunity to enjoy each other and reflect back on a great year. I would say not only what they did for the Patriots and the program and this organization but it was kind of a springboard for Boston sports over that decade. Not that we had anything to do with the Red Sox or the Celtics or the Bruins or anything else, but it was just the first one of many with those three great organizations. You kind of feel proud that we were the first one and that they all followed. And the Cannons – throw them in there, too.

Q: How important is it for players on the team now to hear from guys on the 2001 Super Bowl team to help reinforce how important teamwork and hard work can be?

BB: Well, every team is its own team, so there will never be another team like that one. There will never be another team like this one. It will be unique, but there's certainly a good message there. I talked to the team a little bit about what that team did and how special they were. When I think back to that team, what they did was hard. It was really hard. With the way the season started and just what we had to go through, I'd say the way that team was coached, relative to the way some other teams had been coached. We had a lot of work to do. We had lot of I'd say foundation to build, a lot of structure to implement.  But they didn't blink. They responded to it. They met every challenge. They didn't always come out on the winning end but we battled. We took some tough, tough losses – Miami in particular. After we beat Indianapolis I kind of thought we were getting back on track a little bit at 2-1 or 1-2. We quickly went to 1-3 down there so that was a hammering. But like I said, that team battled through. They battled through a tough loss to the Rams on Sunday Night and then won the rest of them. Not necessarily with a lot of style points but with enough game points at the end to be champions. It was pretty special. But yeah, I'm sure our guys respect what they do, love to hear it. They've heard about a lot of those guys, not so much from the '01 team, [but] the '01 team that also won '03 and '04 teams, so [Tedy] Bruschi and [Willie] McGinest, guys like that; Troy Brown. But there were some guys that were eon the '01 team that didn't play on the '02 or '03 or '04 teams. I said it kind of makes them part of that special group.

Q: What was the thought process on going for it on fourth-and-1 there on the first drive? Was there any hesitation there?

BB: No, we have a lot of confidence in our team in those situations. I thought LeGarrette [Blount] – it was an interesting play. We'll take a look at it on film. It kind of looked like on the field that he could've gone inside and got the first-down and then he went outside and got the touchdown. So it was a good run on his part. Obviously we had good blocking there. There was definitely space to run. I thought Josh [McDaniels, Dante [Scarnecchia] Ivan [Fears] – we had a good short-yardage game plan. We hit a couple of them. That was a big play for us to get off to a good start and finish that first drive so it was good.

Q: What are your thoughts on Stephen Gostkowski's performance today?

BB: Good. Other than one kick I thought he hit the ball well; kickoffs. He had good hang time on the kickoffs. He gave us a good chance to cover against a good return team. [Benny] Cunningham is a good returner. We hit our scoring opportunities, which is always important to take advantage of our points when we have an opportunity to score points to take advantage of those situations. Again, it was a good operation. We had good protection. That's a good rush team. They've gotten a lot of pressure on the rush both inside with [Aaron] Donald and [Michael] Brockers and [Cam] Thomas and those guys, but also on the edge with [Cody] Davis coming outside. Overall it looked like from the field a decent operation there. Again, always good to hit our scoring opportunities. 

Q: Going back to 2001, did you know that team was special when they were 5-5 through 10 games?

BB: I think at that point, no. Every year is kind of like this. I think at that point we were 5-5. We were just trying to get to 6-5. When we were 6-5 we were just trying to get to 7-5. We just try to have one good day, try to have two good days, try to have a good week, try to play good, and start all over again. That team kept just believing in itself. We kept playing. Again, every game was a tough game other than the Carolina game at the end. The Miami game, that was really for the division and as it turns out a first-round bye. Each of those games, the Miami game and then Oakland, to Pittsburgh, to St. Louis – I mean, we were just trying to find a way to win. We didn't really think of ourselves as anything special. I don't think that really happened until really kind of it was all over. We were just trying to find a way to compete and find a way to win. I still think it's pretty interesting how the NFL schedule gave us a bye the last week of the season, like, 'You guys will be out of it so you can go ahead and start your vacation early. Go ahead on home.' I think that certainly surprised them, surprised the schedule makers. Of course we ended up having to play because of the 9/11 game that got postponed with Carolina in Week 2. When the schedule came out and we saw that our bye was the last week of the season – I'm sure we didn't follow along to the script that they had written for us but that's alright.

TOM BRADY, QUARTERBACK

Q: What does it mean to you to reach 201 wins and break the record to become the winningest quarterback of all time?

TB: I'm grateful for all of my teammates and my coaches and for my family and friends. There's been a lot of football over the years, so it's always been about winning and I've been very fortunate to be on a lot of great teams. I just feel very grateful. 

Q: How much did it help for you guys to get off to a hot start today?

TB: Yeah, it was good. The first drive was good. LG [LeGarrette Blount] had a great run in there on short yardage and kind of busted down the sideline. He's got a lot of speed. I mean, he never really gets caught. He's made so many explosive runs here, so it was great to get off to a fast start like that. 

Q: Do you ever look at the incongruity of how you're still playing and most other members of the 2001 team are long-retired?

TB: Yeah, I saw some of them last night at the banquet that Mr. Kraft had, but I didn't stay too long because I wanted to be up early and ready to go today. It's – to be fortunate to play over a long period of time with a lot of different players. I think I've learned so much from everybody that I've played with and I always try to watch everybody and learn from different things that they do. Whether it was Drew [Bledsoe], who I saw, or Damon Huard, who I saw – watching Jimmy [Garoppolo] and watching [Jacoby] Brissett, I feel like there's always something to learn. Like I said, I've just been very fortunate to be around a lot of great teammates over the years, a lot of great coaches, and a lot of wins. 

Q: There seemed to be a lot of screen passes today – did that have anything to do with the Rams' aggressive defense?

TB: Yeah, I'm not sure. We'll have to watch. You're right, there were probably a lot of those today. I wish we – there were a lot of plays I thought we left out there. I thought there were a lot of plays we could have done a better job of finishing drives. I would have liked to put more points on the board than we did, but it was a good win.

Q: How do you think you guys adjusted in the first game since Rob Gronkowski was placed on the Injured/Reserve list?

TB: Well, I said earlier in the week, he's a big loss because he's such a integral factor in what we do, but we'll keep fighting on. I think we've still got a lot of other players who can fight as well. We're going to have to keep doing it, he's not coming back. We all want him to get back as quick as he can with his rehab and so forth, but we've got to keep playing on.

Q: Can you talk about how well Julian Edelman and Malcolm Mitchell played for you today?

TB: Yeah, both of them played great. I thought all the receivers did a great job when they got their looks. Julian [Edelman] made some really big catches, made some really big plays for us. He's done a great job all year. We're going to need him to keep doing it. 

Q: The offense struggled on third down completions today. What are some of the tweaks you need to make before the Baltimore game?

TB: Yeah, I don't think we were on the same page like we needed to be between myself and some of the skill players. There were some plays I thought we could execute better, so it is frustrating when you expect a higher level than what we're getting out there. I think everyone is trying to do the right thing, but we've just got to watch the film, try to correct it and see if we can do a better job. 

Q: How important was it today for Stephen Gostkowski to convert all four of his field goal attempts, three of which were over 40 yards long?

TB: Yeah, it was great to see those balls sail through the uprights. He's so clutch. He's a great player, so I don't think I have too many concerns about him and what he's capable of. He's been a great player for a long time. 

Q: Does it seem like that first Super Bowl win was just yesterday and what was it like to catch up with those guys and see everybody?

TB: Yeah, I mean it goes fast. It's gone really fast. The seasons go fast and the years have gone faster, and yeah, time's flying. 

DEVIN MCCOURTY, DEFENSIVE BACK

Q: The defense came up pretty big today with a few turnovers – can you talk about the importance of that?

DM: It's huge. I said that a couple of weeks ago – nothing would help us more defensively than turning the ball over. Starting off with Malcolm [Butler] and then Kyle [Van Noy] making a play. Great pass rush today, they were able to get in there, force some throws to be a little off, and then we were able to capitalize in the secondary. 

Q: Can you talk about the importance of getting off to a fast start like you guys did today?

DM: We knew it was going to be very important today just because watching a couple of the Rams games, when they got off to a good start and were maybe able to go score right away, then get three-and-out on defense and score again. Like the New Orleans game, they put three touchdowns out there very fast, so we knew that if we could get off to a good start, we could kind of control the game. You saw that from both sides of the ball – the offense going down there and scoring, then going three-and-out. I think that kind of led the game play out how it played out just coming out there early and being ready to go. 

Q: What was your reaction to the opportunities your secondary teammates, particularly Logan Ryan and Patrick Chung, had to rush the quarterback today?

DM: Yeah, I mean if we all could come free like they come free, they'd need to send all of us. But they did a good job – Logan [Ryan] getting in there and just making sure we get the guy down. We've played some of these quarterbacks that are very tough in the pocket. Even [Jared] Goff on Logan's first one, trying to spin out of it and make a play. Anytime we can send secondary pressure, we know it's key to get home. When we send somebody form the secondary, we're usually light somewhere in coverage, so they did a good job getting there and causing pressure. 

Q: Is allowing only 25 total yards in the first half one of the most dominating defensive performances you've been a part of?

DM: Probably. Once you get rolling, and I think the game plays out and we were able to play fast and get on top of everything, that was the key. The stats aren't as important as just us having an understanding of how we want to play, how the game was flowing, and I thought we did a good job. Then getting off the field on third down was huge. 

Q: What are your thoughts on Tom Brady as 201 wins as a starting quarterback is the most of all time?

DM: It's great to be a part of it. I've learned so much from him as a leader, and not only just talking to him but just getting the opportunity to watch him whether it be in captains' meetings, daily routine, on the field, off the field. I think at times you don't really know the true worth of being around a guy like that, but you see the bigger picture when you see a record like this. Two hundred and one wins, the most by a quarterback, it kind of forces you to step back and really realize what the guy has done in the NFL. I'm happy to be a part of it and learn so much from him. 

Q: When you hear the crowd chanting Tom Brady's name at the end of the game, do you appreciate the reaction from the crowd showing their appreciation for a player like that?

DM: Yeah, I think it's great. I think it's an awesome feeling, well-deserved. I think probably the best part of it, seeing a guy like him, is he comes in and he wants no recognition for it. He's all about the wins for the team. He doesn't really see it as an individual stat. He echoed that in the locker room after the game and that's why he's a great leader. That's why we've been able to win a lot of games because of his leadership. The younger guys that come in and become leaders learn it from him and from passing that along.

Q: Teams often times play down to the level of their competition. What's the secret here for your team in avoiding that?

DM: I think for us it's been spoken throughout this whole week. It's December, time to play our best football. We've been at it for a while now dating back to the beginning of training camp. Things we've talked about working on and things we've talked about improving, it's time to start improving on those things and getting them done. Bill [Belichick] said it over and over that who we play each week is not going to matter if we don't come and fix the things we need to fix and play the way we need to play. I think the whole team understands that and it starts with him, but [also] us echoing it as captains and as leaders. Today I think showed that when we do those things, we go out there and play well.

Q: How important is that connection to the 2001 team around here in terms of the current generation of players trying to live up to the standards of the past generations?

DM: I just think it's cool for us as players. Those guys being around, walking around the locker room, just for us to get a chance to talk to them, say, 'What's up,' share a story or two, there's no real connection as far as being out there playing today or this season, but I think anytime you can be around guys like that that are champions, that understood how to win, really at a time, Bill [Belichick] talked about that season, when it wasn't all winning, winning, winning. It was tough times, and just getting to talk to those guys it was cool and a little awkward because it shows you how old Tom [Brady] is to see him out there on that field playing and winning games. It was a great opportunity I know for me just to see some of those guys and talk to them. I've gotten a chance to know some of them over the years, so it's always good seeing the championship team.

LeGarrette Blount, Running back

(On the offense moving forward without Gronkowski)
"We all have to play our part and we'll all have to step up and play a bigger role."

(On the importance of getting off to a hot start offensively)
"We always preach that we have to start fast. That's the ideal start for any NFL team. If you can do that you know you can get everything else rolling, and you can open up the playbook and call the plays that we play."

(On football starting after Thanksgiving)
"Football does start after Thanksgiving here. We have to kick it into gear and we have to do all the things that we need to do and take the necessary steps to make sure that we continue to play good football."

(On Tom Brady reaching 201 wins)
"I think that's a record that probably won't ever be broken. He'll continue to build on it this season, and he's looking great while doing it. I was the first person today to say 201, so congratulations to him, that's not easy. It's not something a lot of quarterbacks can say, but you know him he's already onto next week." 

(On playing Baltimore next week)
"They're a good team. We need to go look at some film on them. We saw that they snapped the win streak for the Dolphins so they're hot right now. We just need to make sure that we continue to do what we have to do to keep winning games."

Malcolm Butler, Cornerback

(On forcing turnovers two weeks in a row)
"It was great. Like I said once before, turnovers come in handfuls. Once you start making them, they'll start coming. We got a couple of sacks today, a couple of interceptions. We're just trying to build off it week in and week out. It wasn't perfect out there, but we're taking a step each week."

*(On allowing the Rams to score a late touchdown) *
"We've just got to clean up that communication, play smart and just finish the game strong, period. We've got to finish. I'm glad we had the lead, but we most definitely want to finish stronger than that."

(On Tom Brady's record-setting 201st victory)
"We're in a locker room with a walking legend. [Tom has] the most wins in quarterback history in the NFL, but he  still comes to work like he hasn't accomplished anything. I look up to that; much respect and congratulations [to Tom]."

(On the interception)
"I was on my plan playing coverage, seen the ball tipped and saw an opportunity. I got the ball and tried to get up the field."

Julian Edelman, Wide Receiver

*(On the win) *
"It was a good team win especially against a team that you're not really familiar with and that you play rarely. They are an athletic group, we're athletic and they threw a bunch of different stuff at us so we knew it was going to be kind of a tough task and it showed. We didn't put up a lot of touchdowns. I don't think our third down was that great but it's always good to go out and get a good team win."

*(On being part of Tom Brady's 201st milestone win) *
"It's an honor. Like I've said, I've watched him play since I was in eighth grade and I've been here for eight years, so that tells you something. To get to see him do this, it couldn't [have] happened to a better guy or a better player. Everything he's done, he's deserved. He should be the face of this league with his story, how he prepares, he's a family man and it couldn't [have] happened to anyone better."

*(On what it is that separates Tom Brady from the rest of NFL history) *
"His relentlessness to always improve. We're in the National Football League and I train with a bunch of quarterbacks, to have a guy like who's been playing for however long he's been playing, to have him work with guys on his fundamentals, always trying to improve and that's just Tom. Always trying to improve his body, always going to bed early, waking up at the right time, getting his body working, I mean the guy lives, breathes, and dies football. He's a great leader. He's a great role model to learn after and it's an honor to get to play with a guy like him."

(On playing without Rob Gronkowski moving forward)
"That's always tough because he's a huge piece to this team and without him, everyone is just going to have to do their job that much better and we're¬¬¬¬ just going to have to find ways to win games. So, it starts in the classroom, taking that to practice and then really showing guys we can do this in practice and then that becomes game realities. It's going to be a lot tougher without him out there, that's for sure, but as long as we continue to improve and gain confidence, that's the ultimate goal."

On how important it was to start the game fast)
"It's always the goal to start fast, but to go out there and put up six against a team you don't really know and play from ahead against a team like them, that's huge. That was great to go in there and get that touchdown right away. Once again, it's penalties and the negative plays that usually kind of stop us and get us off rhythm so we're going to have to work on that and get better. It's going to continue to be those third downs and stuff like that."

Stephen Gostowski, Kicker

*(On how this game has helped with his confidence) *
"It's a start. It's one game. Every week is a different challenge. You just got to battle, keep your head down, stay humble and show up but control your attitude and your effort and make sure both of those are good and have faith in the process that what you've been doing is going to continue."

*(On what he changed to fine-tune his kicking motion) *
"You fine tune every week. When you play in New England you can have cold weather, hot weather, windy weather, or snow. It's a daily change out there and it's not a climate controlled environment so you're fine-tuning every day. Your body feels different, but you're going to go through all that during a long season so it's no different from any other season I've had."

*(On whether or not his confidence has been low lately) *
"In athletics, I've gone through ups and downs my whole life. I've always had my confidence when it comes to athletics. It's sometimes stubborn to a fault. As long as I'm out there and getting a chance to play, I expect to do well. No one is harder on themselves than me when I do bad and I don't plan on changing any time soon."

Chris Hogan, Wide Receiver

(On the win)
"It's an opponent we don't see very often, so I thought we did a good job during the week of studying and knowing what we were going to get and making some adjustments from what we saw from them during the game. We did a good job. LeGarrette [Blount] and the offensive line did a good job of running the ball and we made the plays that needed to be made."

(On the toughest part of the touchdown catch)
"You have to have control of your body, so just getting your head around quick and obviously catching the ball first and kind of letting your feet go dead so that they just go right into the end zone. It was a great throw by Tom [Brady]."

(On the fast start)
"It was good. We were at home so it was great to start fast on that first drive. We kind of went back and forth a little bit, but all in all I think the offense did well today."

(On being part of Tom Brady's record-setting 201st victory)
"I mean it's awesome. Just playing with him is such an honor because he's so great. Week in and week out he just keeps doing it. He's the leader of our offense, [he gets] total attention. When he's speaking, no one else is speaking. You listen to him the entire time."

Chris Long, Defensive End

(On holding the Rams' offense to under 100 yards in the first three quarters)
"Yeah it was a complete team win and for the first time all year I feel like we really put it all together; all three phases. It was a good win against a good football team."

(On being more disruptive on the pass rush)
"I think there have been subtle changes. We're getting a bunch of hitting and we'll knock the ball out. Timing is key. The coverage today was great and we stayed after them. Goff is a young quarterback and we did a good job of staying in his face."

(On Jared Goff)
"He's a tough kid, we hit him a lot and he's getting better every week. He's only been in there a couple of weeks but you can see him continuing to progress. He kept getting back up today and I credit him a lot with that."

(On his career)
"Throughout my career I've had ups and downs, and God has a plan. You may not like it some days but the end result is you try to believe everything happens for a reason. I'm very blessed to be a part of this team."

Malcolm Mitchell, Wide Receiver

*(On being a part of Tom Brady's record-setting victory) *
"I told him it was awesome and that I was blessed, thankful and I feel very fortunate that I was able to experience that."

*(On his recent success during the past three weeks) *
"I just try to get better each week, look at the film, assess the things that you can do better, and try to do them better the next week."

*(On Tom Brady pushing the team late in the game) *
"Any time you're on the field, you're doing the best you can regardless. Regardless of what the score is you don't go out there and just lie down, or not do your job. I know that sounds cliché but every time you step out on the field you have to do what you're supposed to do."

Rob Ninkovich, Linebacker

(On the defense working together today)
"I think we had a good week and we understood that with them having a young quarterback that the best thing for us to do was to get on him, and have him make quick decisions. I think we did a good job of covering and pressuring, and a good overall execution."

(On the challenge of having a young quarterback playing against the Patriots defense)
"Anytime you have a young quarterback it's harder to understand who's coming, where's he coming from, where should I check to, should I check to a run, should I check to a pass. With an older quarterback you understand how to check to a play."

(On what was done well defensively today)
"Everyone did their job and we played fast. We got after the ball and forced turnovers, which is key."

Logan Ryan, Cornerback

*(On the team's recent defensive success) *
"We're just one week at a time. You can't break this season off a couple weeks. Next week, we see what Baltimore [Ravens] just did, they're a real good team. We know how that's been in the past so it should be a nice game, a competitive game, competitive atmosphere. We're just one week at a time, we're happy we got this game and we're on to the next one."

*(On the team's reaction when his name is called to rush the quarterback) *
"When I'm blitzing good things happen so the whole team gets happy when they know it's my number called and I get happy too. It's always good when 26 [Logan Ryan] is blitzing."

*(On the team's defensive game plan) *
"We knew they had talent, we knew that they played fast. We just had to come out there and play fast, match that early, try to impose our will when we could, and we were able to do that so we saw what we are capable of when we're playing well."

Jabaal Sheard, Defensive Linemen

*(On the team's recent success forcing turnovers) *
"[The] coaches preach it all the time, to go for the ball, and that's part of defense to try and turn the ball over.  We did an OK job today and there is always room for improvement. It's something you have to work at, and every week we work on turning the ball over, aiming for the ball and trying to get the ball out of there. We just have to continue to improve."

*(On holding the Rams to 25 yards total offense in the first half) *
"That's big obviously. Our offense did a good job controlling the game and we were well rested and I think that's big as a defense."

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