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Replay: Patriots Unfiltered Thu May 16 - 02:00 PM | Tue May 21 - 11:55 AM

New York Jets Postgame Quotes 9/24

New York Jets head coach Rob Saleh and select players comment on their game against the New England Patriots on Sunday, September 24, 2023.

Head Coach Robert Saleh

On how Zach can keep things clicking for four quarters similar to the touchdown drive…

We've just got to keep working. Obviously, not good enough overall. Third downs, couldn't run the ball, it'd help if we could help around him in terms of the way we play, but just overall just wasn't good enough from coaching to players to all of it.

On how tough today's performance was offensively…

Yeah, you're trying to establish a run game and I think it was under two yards a carry today. You're within a score and you have some opportunities and you've got the ball with opportunities, you're getting decent field position with opportunities. We've just got to be better. We've got to be better as coaches to give our guys the opportunity to make plays. We've got to be better as players when we get an opportunity to make those plays. But it's all the way down. We've just got to figure out these answers.

On where he has seen Wilson's growth despite statistics not showing it…

Yeah, for sure, that's fair. It's like I said, I can get into a long dissertation about what we're seeing, obviously. I think, obviously, his pocket presence to us has been so much more improved. His accuracy is much improved. His decision making is much improved. Like I said, New England's got a hell of a defense over there. They do. Obviously, it just wasn't good enough today.

On why Zach Wilson was holding the ball…

It could've been good coverage on their part. I'll get to the tape on those, but it just wasn't good enough.

On how he balances seeing growth from Zach Wilson with a roster ready to compete…

Like I said, we've got to be better all the way around. It's still a team game, offense, defense, special teams, and we've got to play better everywhere. On the offensive line, we've got to play better in the run game, we've got to play better from a protection and a receiver standpoint. Everyone, coaches got to be better in terms of trying to figure out ways to get guys open, figure out ways to create better angles in the run game. Defense, we can create more turnovers. It's still a team game, so we've just got to be better around him.

On if Zach Wilson has shown him enough to continue to be the starter…

Yeah, he's fine.

On at what point he would decide to make a change…

We're still early in the season. We knew that even with Aaron (Rodgers) at quarterback, we knew that there was going to be some hiccups along the way because of the new offense, new play caller, new o-line, just new players all over the offensive side of the ball. And now you've got this curveball that was sent to us, so they're acclimating and they're going to get better. But it's still very early in the season.

On if Tim Boyle will start to get first team reps…

No.

On if it is fair to the team to continue starting Zach Wilson…

Yeah.

On if he'd prefer for Wilson to throw beyond the sticks on the final offensive play…

Yeah, for sure. Throwing it short of the sticks, you never want to do that on a fourth-down call. But we'll talk about that one tomorrow.

On if the defense needs to come out with a takeaway…

For sure. Mistakes like the touchdown can't happen. They can't happen. Unfortunately, it did, but I thought they did a really nice job in the second half, especially in the second half, locking down, giving us as many opportunities as possible. We had some opportunities at the football. It was there, it was live. On a couple of occasions, I felt like we were about that close from flipping the game, but thought we did a nice job on special teams to create some good field position opportunities. They dominated the field position early in the first quarter. I felt like in the second half we had some opportunities, it just couldn't come to fruition.

On if the defense giving up 13 points should lead to a win…

For sure. Any time, if you give up less than 20 you should win a game. They gave up less than 20 too, so.

On the 58-yard touchdown…

From a schematic standpoint, I'm not going to get into it.

On how much pressure is on the defense when allowing 13 points doesn't lead to a win…

It's not pressure because your job on defense is to give up no points and to get the ball back to the offense as many times as possible. That will forever be the history of defense. So, if we start pressing to try to do more, I guess, that's when you get bad football. We put ourselves in great position. That last drive, same thing, two timeouts, we're at midfield, would've loved to have seen something, but, obviously, they were better than us today.

On why he is definitive that Wilson will remain the starter…

Right now, he's who gives us the best chance to win. Basically, that would be the cleanest answer I can give you.

On the offensive line…

Yeah, the way we aligned this week, that's what we were practicing all week. We've been cross-training AVT (Alijah Vera-Tucker) to play right tackle just because of the fact that with Mekhi (Becton) coming off the injury and Duane (Brown) coming off an injury also, we had to have somebody ready, and so we were prepared for this three weeks ago and unfortunately we had to use it, but we were ready for it.

On if he worries he will lose the locker room if Wilson continues to start and if he can address reports that the team turned down Carson Wentz and Matt Ryan reaching out to the team…

I'm not worried about the locker room. We've got a great locker room. They'll be fine. And as for the other stuff, I'm not going to address that.

On what went well for Wilson on the touchdown drive…

He got into a rhythm, obviously. I thought he hit that hole shot in cover-two to (Allen) Lazard on the right sideline, which is a high-difficulty throw. I thought that was a really nice one. Just overall, we got them on their heels and we were able to stay on the gas and keep them on their heels. It's just consistency. We've got to get consistent and take it from drive to drive.

On if he can shed light on Michael Carter's frustration on the sideline…

I don't know anything about that.

QB Zach Wilson

On his overall performance…

It's tough, we didn't do anything on offense. Especially in the first three quarters or whatever it was. We got to sustain drives, we got to stay on the field, we got to put together something. So, a lot of frustration for everybody on offense, we have to just keep going. Watch this film and get better.

On how he'd assess why things didn't improve in the passing game…

Yeah, I don't know. It starts with me, I have to find a way to be better. We're going to go back and watch this film and we're going to find all those things. Find out how we can improve.

On if the gameplan was to run the ball more…

I think it's always to be balanced, you want to do what's working and today it didn't feel like anything was really working. So, we have to find a way to do something. We got to find a way to do something.

On what went well on the drive where he was 7-10 and led to the touchdown drive…

Well, I think it gets to a point where we're not doing anything, and as a quarterback, there comes a point where you have to try to go make a play. I think the guys did a great job of our hurry up offense going there. They gave us some looks where I thought we were able to exploit a little bit, we got some momentum on our side, I think that helped. I think more than anything it was getting the ball rolling, I think we picked up a couple first downs and it finally was like, 'Oh my goodness, here we go, finally. We're good to go.' And how can we build on that, so we're going to watch that film and figure it out.

On why it was tough to maintain the momentum of that series…

I don't know. You have to give credit to those guys too, they do a good job. Good pass rush, good stuff in the backend as well. So, how can we find a way to improve.

On if he was held back by conservative play calling early in the game…

I wouldn't say that. I thought we had a great plan going into it, but still think it was a good plan. We need to find a way as players to keep these drives going so we can stick to the plan. I think that's the biggest thing. We all have to find a way to be better and I think the rest will kind of take care of itself. I think when you get to the end of the game and you have the chance to come back and win, I think because we played the field position well, we took care of the rock, we gave ourselves the chance to put a drive like that together. As a quarterback, when the fourth quarter comes, that's your time to, you have to do a little more now. You don't want to do that too early because that's how you can lose a game but the majority of games are close all the way to the end, so that's when you have to start putting your foot on the pedal.

On what happened on the fourth-and-10 to TE Tyler Conklin short of the sticks…

That's tough man, have to find a way to get it done. I know the situation, fourth-and-10, we'll go back and watch it. I didn't love what I saw on the back end, I mean of course, what's going to be wide open on fourth-and-10, but my thought process was if I can get it out to Conklin quick enough, there was only one guy over there. He makes him miss, he's able to get the first down, but obviously right as the ball got there the guy tackled him. So, find a way to be better because I have to find a way. Fourth-and-10, you have to have a situation, I understood the situation. We're going to go back and watch it.

On if it's frustrating to not see results…

It is extremely frustrating, but really working on just how can we go next play, next play, next play mentality. I think we all trust in each other more than ever, especially as these times get tough and people count us out, we have to lean on each other because I think we have the group and these guys are going to keep learning, growing and we're going to keep getting better together.

On the sacks in the first half of the game…

We'll go back and watch them, there's always a chance to try to get rid of it if I can. I thought those guys did a good job of kind of a mush rush of not letting me step up and get out. A lot of the escapes were kind of high in the pocket which is not really what you want as a quarterback. So, I thought those guys did a good job of trying to maintain keeping me in the pocket.

On how he prevents things from snowballing as one of the leaders of the team…

Yeah, the NFL is crazy. I think it starts there, it's a long season, we're all going to look in the mirror, find out how we can be better and learning and improving. Having that short-term memory, understanding that we lost this week, oh well, we have to learn from this and move on and get better.

On what he'd say to Jets fans…

Keep believing. I truly believe we got the guys, we're going to keep doing everything we can to get better. We understand the frustrations, it's not fun to go three-and-out, it's not fun to not establish drives, and play football and score touchdowns. We understand that and we're doing everything we can, we're going to get better.

RB Michael Carter

On if he is frustrated with today's game play…

I think that's a reach. Frustrated is not the word. We're eager because we know how good we are, and we just want to win. From a coaching perspective, they're coaching their (butts) off, they're game planning, they're doing everything they can, right? And by the end of the day, you can only game plan so much – players got to make it happen. It's a collective effort and we have to get better, obviously on offense. Anytime your defense gives up one touchdown, we got to win that game, got to win. So, it's not like we don't have the players to do it. People, they're quick to (criticize) on Zach (Wilson), but come on now, it's not like he's playing bad football, but he's the quarterback. That's kind of what happens when you go number two overall to one of the biggest cities in the world and everybody's watching you. If you don't play picture perfect football then they're ready to get you out of here, right? It's just one of those things that we got to be better as a team. There's only so much you can put on Zach, he's human. So as a team and going back to Garrett (Wilson) to really answer your question, we're not necessarily frustrated with anything that would have to do with a play call or scheme or anything of that nature. It's about we're alphas, we're competitive and we want to win more than anything else in this world. We work for six months from August to like February and then we kick it for the rest of the year. So, it's like, you know what I mean? Like we going to win. It means a lot. I'm tired of watching Beyonce halftime show. I want to be in the locker room game planning. It means a lot to us and that's really what it is.

On the team's confidence level…

We're good. I love where we're at. Zach, you know, he commands the huddle, and he makes plays and it's not a one man show. It's different from other sports. Football is the ultimate team sport for a reason, and we got to help him out.

On the success so late in the game…

I don't know if frustrating is the word. I think we just got to be more consistent in general from getting set because it seems like sometime when we get set, we only got 15 seconds. We got to do better in terms of getting to the ball and then we can do our assignments, checks, everything like that. We've got to make it easier for ourselves and I'm going to leave it at that.

WR Garrett Wilson

On if he has been put in the right position to be successful…

You work so hard in the offseason, you grind all week, you play and you feel like you're at a certain level as far as how you are at football. I feel like I'm the best that I've been or I feel like I've gotten worse, whatever it may be. I feel like I'm in a really good spot as far as my ability and I feel like I've been able to put that on display and that's for multiple reasons. I don't know what it may be. I just know I'm ready. I'm going to continue to be ready. I'm going to make sure every time I take that field that I'm confident in my ability no matter what's going on around me. Yeah, that's how I feel about it.

On frustration of offense having two opportunities to get the ball down field…

Yeah. It's the worst part. When your defense plays how it does, makes the plays that it does despite being put in tough spots and they continue to keep you in the game, you want to be able to reward them with a touchdown or whatever may be points, taking the lead. That's the worst part about it. Me being on that side and loving those guys, competing with those guys, I know what they're putting out there. It's been one sided so far. I just want to make sure that they are feeling the same joy that we feel when they get a stop, giving us another opportunity. We haven't done that this year.

On his confidence in Zach Wilson at quarterback…

Oh, yeah. Come on now. That's my dawg and he can spin. Yeah, man. All the confidence in the world. You know, we have to figure it out on offense as a whole.

CB Sauce Gardner

On the positive momentum in the fourth quarter…

A lot more energy, we have to do better bringing that early, but everyone was just in a different mode, everybody is just making plays, C.J (Mosely), Quincy (Williams), all the guys, the front seven, a lot of plays, so that is what happened.

On how the team prevents outside voices dividing the team…

We just got to love each other up, not point fingers at each other. Like I said earlier, just think of ways we individually could have impacted the game, we have to be our toughest critics, the biggest critics.

On how to prevent a division in the team…

Just loving each other up, not focusing on the outside noise, that is just me like I don't really pay too much attention to social media because I know a lot of the people on social media don't really know what they are talking about. There are a lot of coaches and GMs on Twitter, who have never coached a day in their life, so if everyone could be like that. Coach Saleh, he does a great job of just talking to the team and just reiterating that we all got each other's backs, we all just got to buy into that, and I feel like we have been doing it for the most part.

RB Breece Hall

On what worked well for them on that drive…

I think we were just going fast. We had the one where he was a little bit and they kind of couldn't expect that we picked up. We started to pick up their blitzes a lot and just got going as an offense. Sometimes it takes a while for an offense to keep going and today it just took longer than we wanted it to so we didn't get the job done.

On if he would like to see a change in pace earlier in the game…

I honestly don't think we have a problem with what we're doing at all. We just got to get going earlier, we got to start the clicks, we all got to do our one eleventh every play. We do our one eleventh every play then we'll be fine.

On the running game…

It was just tough sled today, we just couldn't get it going. I feel like I could have done better. I'm sure Dalvin (Cook) felt like he could have done better. MC (Michael Carter) probably felt like he could have done better. You can never just blame it on one person. We just got to do better as a whole offense.

TE Tyler Conklin

On the offenses' performance today…

I wish I had an answer for that right now, when I think about it, it's a little bit of everybody, we all got to look at ourselves after this game, we all got to watch the film and where could we all be better on each play, every single one of us I am sure can look at this film and look in the mirror and be like 'hey I could have done better on this, I could have done better on that' and that is why football is such a great game, it's the best team game in the world, so I think that is going to be, we are going to have to watch this film. I wish I had an answer for that right now, when I think about it, it's a little bit of everybody, we all got to look at ourselves after this game, we all got to watch the film and where could we all be better on each play, every single one of us I am sure can look at this film and look in the mirror and be like 'hey I could have done better on this, I could have done better on that' and that is why football is such a great game, it's the best team game in the world, so I think that is going to be, we are going to have to watch this film. And the other thing is it is not the end of the world, it sucks, it hurts, and I am sick of losing to these guys, I am sick of this streak and all the talk, because now when we play them again, we have to hear it again, but we have another game Sunday, Sunday Night Football too, so we will feel a lot better about when we go win a big game like that, so it is on to the next, but is does hurt.

On the momentum in the fourth quarter…

It is hard to tell without watching it, but from the feeling of it, from the last two weeks we struggled a little bit, and the two times we moved the ball really well consistently we were on the ball a little bit. So I think when we got the ball, I feel like Zach (Wilson) feels really comfortable when he is kind of just getting on the ball, not huddling, just getting into the flow of things, I feel like he just feels really good and comfortable doing that stuff. Obviously, it helps along the pass rush when you are getting on the ball and not letting them catch a break to be able to go rush the passer. So coming off the game just now, I feel like it has helped us the last two game, just get on the ball no huddle, getting a rhythm that way.

On believing in Zach after today's game…

I think that is the hard part about football, quarterbacks get the win, losses column and that sucks because I do think that is a lot of plays where he hung in the pocket and threw some really good balls, to me on third down, to Allen (Lazard) on the go ball and cover two. There are a lot of times where he is in tough situations, pressure in his face, or whatever it may be, like I said, I am sure there are plays he wishes could have done better, there are plays where I wish I could have ran a better route for him, there are plays where I am sure someone wishes they could have blocked for him better. It's definitely not on anybody, our big thing is ignoring you guys a little bit and the media is going to put the blame on the quarterback and we are going to let him know we got his back and it's not on him.

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