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New York Jets Postgame Quotes 10/24

New York Jets head coach Robert Saleh and select players comment on their 54-13 loss to the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on Sunday, October 24, 2021.


October 24, 2021

RS: All right, obviously Zach [Wilson] has a knee. We'll know tomorrow after the MRI. [Jamien] Sherwood has an ankle. We'll know tomorrow. Quincy [Williams] had a concussion and [Blake] Cashman had a groin.

Q: When you can move in certain directions, you can get an indication of how bad it is. Do you know, is it PCL or ACL more?

RS: You know what, we'll know more tomorrow. Initially we feel good, but you never know.

Q: How do you make sense of that 54 points today?

RS: Top down. Starts with coaching all the way down. Obviously we've got to be better. They punched us in the freaking mouth and scored points, so credit to them. That's it. I mean, I've been in part of some of those in my life. They just don't feel good.

Q: Any common denominator there, the first six times they touched the ball they scored. Were you having any similar problems the whole way through?

RS: Our guys are playing their tails off. It's what we talked about at halftime, it's just a matter of executing and doing things the right way. Just execute. Came out in the second half, obviously offense I thought Mike [White] stepped in, started doing a good job, Mike White, moving the ball. Scored in the second half. Had an opportunity there in the first series of defense. Obviously didn't work out. That fourth quarter we ran out of humans. So all our linebackers, all that stuff. It just wasn't good.

Q: Having the two weeks off, not only physically getting a chance to get refreshed, but all the studying you did, scouting, tweaks, to come out pretty much on the first series and be on your heels...

RS: Yeah, from a defensive standpoint obviously we all think we're a lot better than that. Again, I want to tell you unforced errors, but obviously there's got to be a better way we got to coach it. There's messages that have to be a lot better. Clearly something wasn't connecting today starting with coaching, so...

Q: It's a word that isn't generally thrown around lightly, but when you guys 'suffer' a loss like this, get punched in the mouth early, there's no real comeback, is there a sense of embarrassment after one like this?

RS: Yeah, obviously. This is the NFL. You give up 50 points, it's embarrassing. I don't think I've had this feeling after a game since 2017 against Dallas. A helpless feeling where you're just watching, you're trying to figure something out. I'll be honest. We talk about adversity. Everyone was asking. You can chalk this one up, it's here. This is from coaches all the way down. NFL doesn't really give a flying [expletive] - excuse my language - in terms of scheduling. We got to line up the next week and for the 11 or 12, whatever we got left. I know we got the right men in that locker room. I know we got the right people in that locker room. I know we'll come back strong. But we got to get it going.

Q: They were still slinging it a little bit down the stretch in the fourth quarter. Did you have any problem with that?

RS: No. It's the NFL.

Q: Some of those hits on Zach [Wilson], no flags thrown. But the one he was kind of near the sideline, seemed like that hit was a little late, also low. Then the one where he seemed to get hurt, another one that was kind of low. Did you have any opinion...

RS: No. When you're out of the pocket you can go as low as you want, from my understanding. I haven't seen the replay on the one he actually got hurt on. From my understanding, it was fine. His knee drove into the ground, and that's what caused the injury, so...

Q: Anything you plan on doing differently, specifically defensively, for your next game?

RS: No, so there's always a tell-the-truth moment in terms of when you watch film. You always want to look at, one, structurally were we okay. Were there mistakes. Was it structurally where no matter what we did based on that call, were we going to be in the situation we were in or was it just a matter of executing. Once we get to the film room, study all that, just check it obviously. I don't want to give you wholesale changes when structurally I think we were okay. I think the guys for the most part were executing. All it takes is one. So we'll get a good idea after film study.

Q: You've been an upbeat guy since we've gotten to know you. You're not a screamer. Does this team need a kick in the ass? Do you need to be a screamer right now?

RS: No, these are grown men. They are. In this league, I refuse to believe otherwise, these men play their tails off. They go to work and they have a lot of pride. There's a lot of pride in the locker room. There's a lot of pride throughout the NFL in terms of they're putting on tape, they're showing out, trying to play for one another, their teammates are family. There's a lot of whys for why people show up. If you need somebody, it's just my opinion, to be in your butt yelling at you to get going playing a child's game at a king's ransom, then you don't deserve to wear the logo, period. I know we got great character guys. I know they were playing their butts off. Everyone once in a while you get your (expletive) - excuse my language - you get your teeth knocked in. Sorry.

Q: Just a few minutes after the game, but what are you most pissed off about today? Is it yourselves as coaches? Ticked at the players for the execution?

RS: I always look inward. I always look at me first, look in the mirror, see what we can do. Did we chase something. I always look inward. I'm going to challenge everybody to look inward. Look at yourself first before you start pointing the finger and searching for reasons why. Trying to see if you can feel good about yourself and blame people. It's not about that. It's about individual fortitude and individual reflection, trying to find a way to get things fixed. I'm not upset. It's probably more disappointment than anything.

Q: Was C.J. Mosley close at all? How much did his absence hurt you?

RS: C.J., obviously he's an all-pro player. Did it hurt? Obviously, yeah. Should it have hurt this bad? No. Missing his presence, not having C.J. out there, obviously it hurt. It shouldn't have hurt this bad. But to answer your question, we'll see. I haven't gotten the chance to talk to him, see how he felt. It was pretty clear going into this morning, even before the workout, it was probably going to be a longshot anyway.

Q: Did you feel the wind was taken out of your sails when you lost Zach Wilson? Was that a body blow for you guys?

RS: I don't know if it was a body blow at all. No, no.

Q: Did you get a chance to talk to Zach? If you did, what was he like?

RS: He's fine. Just talked to him at halftime. I'll go see him here in a second. Seems like he's in a good place. After the evaluation tomorrow, we'll see where we go from there.

Q: If Zach has to miss time, how much of a setback is that for him and his development? We all know experience is so important.

RS: No, it's a fair question. Anytime you miss reps, it's not ideal. But I don't think it's going to be that big of a setback.


October 24, 2021

Q: Can you describe what happened on that play from what you can tell?

ZW: Yeah, I threw the ball and I think my toe kind of just got stuck in the ground and Judon just kind of fell on it with all of his weight and that kind of twisted it. Felt a pop there and it just was – obviously thinking of the worst-case scenario in my head which sucks but just making sure it's going to be alright hopefully. Just get it checked out. It's obviously frustrating, injuries are part of the game of football so just dealing with them as we can and be able to come back.

Q: What knee is injured?

ZW: Yeah, my right knee, which the play before, because I know a lot of people have asked about that, was my left knee and luckily, I completely popped up fine. I had no issues at all on the throwaway and the play before. It looked bad, but luckily just bent my knee like normal and then unfortunately I hurt my knee on the next play. That was actually the other knee, my right knee.

Q: What's the prognosis?

ZW: We're not sure yet. We're hoping to figure out more details tomorrow when we get the MRI, but obviously hoping for the best-case scenario.

Q: Was it a PCL injury?

ZW: Yeah. I mean, that's what we've heard so far. That's what I think would probably be the best-case scenario. I'm not really sure. I don't know a lot about the PCL. Obviously, the pain really isn't there. It just kind of feels like something's a little off as far as just being loose or unstable a little bit. So, just making sure we get the MRI to clear up things.

Q: You have two back-to-back games coming up with a Thursday night game, do you think you're going to miss the next two games?

ZW: I wouldn't say that. I'm definitely not planning on that. I'm hoping I can get in there and do what I can to come back as fast as possible, making sure everything's good. So, once we get these results, just hit the rehab and everything for long and just find out what I'm capable of doing and trying it back as fast as possible.

Q: Did you feel the hits were legal?

ZW: Yeah, I wouldn't necessarily say that the one I hurt it on was anything bad. I didn't watch the clip. I didn't think he had tried to hurt me. I think the first one, just because he went for my knees, I thought it was a little out there. I didn't understand the situation he had, if he had no other option or whatever it was there. But yeah, I think that injuries are just part of the game.

Q: We talk so much about you guys coming out and starting fast, how disappointing was it to start like that?

ZW: Yeah, it was, but at the same time we just move on. You can't make it bigger than it is and I thought we put some good things together on the second drive and were able to convert. I think that was part of the game, is it didn't look great from the first drive but oh well, then you've got to move on and it's not always going to be and so I thought we did some good things in the drive after.

Q: Overall, what have the last few hours been like for you?

ZW: Yeah, frustrating. I just sat in there asking him, 'Can I go back in?', or 'What can I do?' Once they said the best thing to do is probably obviously not to play and to make sure we find out what's wrong first, I just kind of sat in there on my phone and watched the game on my phone and just tried to see everything that was going on. Obviously I wanted the best for those guys, to come out there and get it done. We're going to keep getting better. It's a big process for us.

Q: What was the reasoning for staying in the locker room?

ZW: Yeah. I was really in there just starting pretty much the rehab process, icing and stem and all the different things that you can do at this point. Honestly, probably just cooling down a little bit and I'm trying to watch the game and it was obviously frustrating.

Q: From a team perspective, coming off a loss, how do you deal with it?

ZW: Yeah, you move on. You move on. We're not going to let this beat us up because we're in this for the long run and it's a process. As long as we just keep trying to get better every single game and we keep going to work and guys don't try and do too much, all the way across the board, including us in the quarterback room, just taking what they give us, we'll eventually get there.

Q: What did you think about how Mike White played?

ZW: Awesome. I said to him in there, that's a hard situation, to step in there and he hasn't taken many reps, obviously hasn't played very much in a live game before, but I thought he played really well. I thought he came in there composed and I thought he did a great job leading them with some really good drives and I really did think he did. He played well.

Q: What's the mood like in the locker room right now?

ZW: Yeah, guys are obviously frustrated, but I would say determined. Guys want to get better and the message around is, we're going to be all right, keep getting in the film room, keep getting better and it will be all right.

Q: After coming off a bye week, how disappointing is it to only play about a quarter of the game and to have this loss?

ZW: Yeah, of course frustrating but I'd say being pissed off or upset about that probably really doesn't help us. We just have to understand that that's what happened, and that's part of the game and adversity is going to hit just like that and it's always about how you respond, and I think the guys have the right message and the right demeanor as far as that goes. And so, that's exactly what we're going to try and do.

Q: What was Robert Saleh's message to you guys following the game?

ZW: Yeah, exactly. Kind of what I just said, how are you going to respond when adversity hits? Every good team that I've been on in my life, looking back till I was playing PeeWee football, it always sucked before it got better. No one ever really just walks into situations and it's the greatest thing from the beginning and I think guys understand that. That it's a process and we've just got to keep getting better and we've just all got to be accountable of our mistakes and what things we could have done better. As long as we just keep getting better, I think it'll take care of itself.

Q: What was going through your mind when you first got injured and they were tending to you?

ZW: Yeah. It really just like, obviously you run through your mind just like praying that it's not the worst-case scenario, having a knee injury and at first it wasn't necessarily like a painful thing. I felt a pop, I felt a twist. So like, you kind of know when it's different than just getting some sort of bruise or getting landed on or whatever. I knew something had happened. It felt a little unstable and that was why I kind of wanted to just make sure everything was okay. It was a sore. I didn't feel like I could move it at first. That's kind of why I laid there and tried to just get my thoughts together and kind of figure out what was going on and then from there, it's just, even now still trying to figure out how we can make it better.


October 24, 2021

Q: Mike, what was the moment like when you saw Zach Wilson go down?

MW: First you worry about your friend on the ground, worrying about his well-being, how he was faring. Now you realize, All right, it's my shot to go in there, help execute the offense. I told myself not to do anything out of the ordinary, just play within the system, complete the balls, get the balls to our play-makers and kind of go from there.

Q: Did you talk to Zach at all?

MW: I didn't get a chance to talk to him on the field. I just spoke to him in there. He's in good spirits. He congratulated me. He was good. He was good.

Q: Did the touchdown pass maybe settle you down a little bit?

MW: Yeah, I would say so. I mean, it helped me settle down a little bit. Still, I mean, kind of all happened so quickly. You get to the sideline, then you realize. We start talking about what we're thinking, things of that nature. I think the more drives I got, the more completions I got, I started to settle a little bit more into the game.

Q: How do you feel you played overall?

MW: I think overall personally there are things to build on. I think we did some good things as an offense. We executed, moved the ball downfield. As in any game there's going to be plays you want back. I think the most important thing is going into the film room tomorrow and correcting those things, building upon it, not letting today beat us twice.

Q: Are you confident if Zach is out for any amount of time you can lead this team?

MW: I think once we figure out what's going on with Zach - cross that bridge when we get there sort of deal - yeah, I'm confident in myself. I'm mostly confident in the guys we have in that locker room, the leaders we have. The coaching staff, too. Have to make the corrections necessary and keep going and being professionals and working our tails off and trying to get this thing going.

Q: How beneficial has it been to have Josh Johnson on the practice squad?

MW: Josh has been awesome. I think the QB dynamic that we have in our room between myself, Josh, Zach obviously, Coach Cavanaugh, LaFleur, Rod, everyone brings a different thing into that room. We work real well together. I think Josh was awesome on the sideline for me today. Anytime you're playing, you want to look to the player's aspect to get a different point of view on the game. And Josh was awesome.

Q: Any one particular pass that stands out you wish you had back?

MW: Yeah, there was a couple. I think the one to Ryan Griffin over the middle. I haven't been able to watch the film yet, but it felt as if it came out kind of high and hot. Those are something you want back. That's just off the top of my head.

Q: We saw the work you did in training camp. We don't watch practice during the regular season. How much work have you gotten with the ones?

MW: In the regular season Zach will get all the one reps and I'll get the scout team. Still working on football mechanics, pocket movement, might be other team's offenses. At the end of the day a curl is a curl and a slant is a slant. It's definitely different, don't get me wrong. I don't want to make any excuses for myself. Every other backup goes through the same thing.

Morgan Moses, T

(On the game and the play when Zach Wilson got hurt)

"I didn't really see what happen, so first of all I will have to go back and watch the film, similar to the whole game, I have to go back assess the whole thing. The Patriots played great football, they came out and ran the ball successfully, and did a lot of things on third down and second down. At the end of the day, we need to find a way to be on the same page. We have to find a way to execute, and that is the biggest thing. We need to find a way to keep our defense off the field. I think the first drive we had was only thirty seconds, and then the Patriots went down and scored. Then we got the ball and were three and out, for another thirty seconds, and then our defense was back on the field."

(On being outscored in the first quarter during the season)

"Like I said we need to find a way to execute, and that is the thing. It can't be ten people and it can't be nine people, it has to be all eleven. It takes all eleven and that is why we have eleven people on the field at one time. To be able to make sure we have everything covered, and I don't think it is an effort thing. I know guys are busting their tails in practice and we are running around 100 miles per hour. We just need to find a way to make that trickle down from Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and clean it up on Saturday and take it to the field on Sunday."

(On taking the loss and the morale in the locker room)

"The biggest thing is that it hurts. It hurts, like I said when you go out there Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday busting your tail and you have team drills against the defense and the defensive line is going after it and you have good on good football. That's the thing, when you are prepared and then you go out there and lay an egg like that, and don't have a successful offensive showcase, it hurts, because you know how many hours you put in throughout the week to get these things right."

(On comparing this game to Week 2 game against the Patriots and the biggest difference)

"The outcome of the game, you can sit there and say you want to run the ball thirty times but if you get down 14-0 or 21-0 that is the game plan is out in the air. For us, whatever the case is, we just need to come back, and just get the X's and O's. We have to overcome some things, and we have to overcome adversity and we have to overcome play calls that might be not be as great against this look. We have to overcome and that is what championship teams do. Like I said we need to push through this adversity wall and the team will stay together as family as always, and just press forward."

Marcus Maye, S

(On if he's ever been part of a game like today)

"We had a few guys go down. We are a young team, we made adjustments, things like that. We can't let it affect us too much. It's tough. Nobody is happy right now, obviously, everybody is upset. We've got to deal with it. We've got to own it, watch the film, learn from it. Even though we are a young team. We've got to continue to grow."

(On the Patriots in the short passing game)

"Different looks, new looks. They had a good game plan. We had a few guys go down. Now we just have to find a way to adjust."

(On how much not having C.J. Mosley impacted the defense)

"A lot. C.J. is one of the top linebackers in this league. Him not being out there, not having his presence is tough. It's not an excuse."

(On the Patriots trick plays)

"We knew that is part of what they do. We don't know when exactly it is going to happen, or how it's going to happen but you just have to be prepared. We've got a game next week, we got practice on Monday, we've got film, go back to the drawing board and practice. We've can get better. Nobody is going to feel sorry for us."

(On the feeling in the locker room)

"We just lost a game, so nobody is happy. Nobody is pointing fingers at each other. It's a group effort."

Sheldon Rankins, DL

(On the loss)

"They were able to take some shots, they came out and did some things that we practiced for. It just came down to us not being able to execute the way we wanted to. We gave up way too many big plays. On early downs we kept them behind the sticks and when it came to third downs, we couldn't get off the field. There were times when they would continue drives and they were able to capitalize on that. All in all, they didn't do anything that shocked us so to speak. They didn't do anything that was out of character for them. We need to continue to get better and be able to stop this and put out fires when they get rolling."

(On C.J. Mosley's absence)

"Look we have the utmost confidence in everyone that's in that room. Obviously with C.J., his resume, his caliber speaks for itself. Anytime you lose a guy like that, he will be missed. But we had the utmost confidence in everybody that took the field today playing linebacker. It just simply comes down to execution. Those guys were being coached by C.J all week and he was talking to them on the sidelines. Those guys were prepared and ready, as we all were. We just didn't execute."

(On being beaten by such a large score)

"I can't recall ever being on the end of giving up that many points, but at the end of the day getting punched in the mouth like that, it's never a good feeling. It's not something we want to experience again. It's not something we're proud of. But at the end of the day, we've got to own that. We have to own that tape, we have to own the fact that we have the opportunity this week to correct those mistakes and come back next week and put out a better showing. Put out a tape that is truly us, because we don't feel like a team that gives up 50 all the time. All in all, we have to own this. But we also know we're going to make the corrections and come out and put on a better showing."

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