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Patriots Postgame Quotes - 12/3/2006

Asante Samuel, Cornerback

(On success against the NFC North)
No, we played a terrible game today, we can't keep playing like this. We are just getting by and you can't do that. We need to play better if we want to continue to win.

(On his interception)
He ran a good route on me. He had a step on me and I just made up for it and had a good reaction on the ball and made a good play.

*(On why the defense came out flat)
*We just came out dead. We just didn't come out fired up and we didn't come out pressuring them. We just didn't come out playing Patriots football We didn't play good the whole game so we are glad that he got the victory but we have to play better.

*(On if Detroit did anything different on offense)
*No. We expected everything they did; it was just an off day for us. We survived but there is one thing I can say about us is, we know how to win and we never quit and we play to the end.

Reche Caldwell, Wide Receiver

*(On the two-minute drill)
*I think it starts with our quarterback, making the right reads and hitting open guys like he did today. We have confidence and he has confidence in us to make the plays.

*(On Brady getting it going)
*I think it gives us momentum and I think that our 2-minute offense is hard to stop because we have too many weapons. You can't key on one guy. We have receivers and tight ends and running backs going out there making plays.

*(On having a career year )
*Yes I think I am getting more confident each week and Tom is having confidence in me because he is throwing me a lot of passes. I just go out and work hard and I try to be the best I can be for this team.

*(On playing on a winning team)
*It feels good to be on a winning team, a playoff team, a super bowl caliber team, and it feels good to be playing with one of the best quarterbacks in the league. So it definitely feels good to go out there and play.

*(On Florida or Michigan in the National Championship game)
*It has to be Florida with [their] strength of schedule. Look at the SEC-- it is one of the hardest conferences and then to be 11-1. It's tough to come out of the SEC 11-1 so I am hoping it is Florida. They had a great season and they showed it again last night.

*(On his role in the offense)
*I think I'm getting more comfortable and [Tom] Brady is getting a little bit more comfortable in me. He is throwing me a lot of passes and I'm catching them. We are out there making plays.

*(On whether the team was nervous trailing in the second half)
*I wasn't nervous. On the sidelines, no one felt that way. We felt as long as we ran our offense and if the defense came up big in the end, we were going to win the ballgame.

*(On whether the game was closer than it should have been)
*Definitely it was closer than it should have been, but this is the NFL. Every team is good and every team is capable winning any given Sunday. They went out there and played a good game. They had a good game plan. They moved the ball on offense up and down the field. We had trouble stopping them. We had trouble putting points on the board early on. We got it together in the fourth quarter and came up with a win.

*(On how the chemistry with Tom Brady has developed)
*It develops in practice and in the meeting room. It is being on the same page, running good routes, catching the football and knowing that he can depend on me.

*(On the success of the two-minute offense)
*I think that kind of gave us the momentum. Our two-minute went down there and scored real fast. I think we have one of the best two-minute offenses in the league with Tom Brady making great decisions and hitting the open guys. We went down there and scored and we took it from there.

Richard Seymour, Defensive Line

*(On the game)
*We were just happy to get out of there with a win. I think that's the most important thing. At this point in the season, it didn't go great, but if you look at the last two weeks, even though we didn't play great, and played sloppy at times, the bigger issue is that we got a win. If we can win those tough games and we can win the games that we didn't play as well as we would like to, at the end of the day we can look back and say, we didn't do all the things that we wanted to but it still put us in a good position coming down the stretch.

*(On winning today while some other teams in the AFC playoff hunt lost)
*At this point right now you're just trying to win. We're just jockeying for position. Nothing is etched in stone. Nobody has given out any trophies or where you're going to be in the playoffs. We're just trying to get better as a football team at this point. We still have some work to do. That's just the bottom line. We definitely have to do a better job than we've been doing, but any time you win a game in the National Football League you have to celebrate that. We won but at the end of the day we understand that we're just going to have to play better, and I think we have the capability to do that.

*(On the fourth quarter)
*There wasn't a lot of emotion all day long. It felt like at times we were picking each other up and had to get going, but there are going to be games like that. We were able to play smart at the right times. We're fortunate [Mike] Vrabel came up with two interceptions at the end there and our offense got in the end zone when it needed to and also got the two-point conversion. Overall, we made the plays when we needed to make them and that's the most important thing.

*(On lack of emotion)
*I don't know. We were just trying to keep each other up all day. It was one of those things that we had to fight through and really get going and make some plays. There are going to be games like that but the more important thing is that even in games like that we found a way [to win] when it was tough. We gave them some confidence. You heard them talking over on the sideline in the fourth quarter, but we made the plays when we have to.

Ty Warren, Defensive Line

*(On the defense not being able to get off the field on third down)
*I think that there was enough blame to go around from me jumping offside to us not stopping plays on third down and long yardage. I think there was enough blame to go around.

*(On lack of energy and emotion)
*I think maybe it was the way the game was going. When you have a lot of mistakes, whether it is not being able to stop guys on third down or the ball being on the ground or whatever the case may be, you're kind of caught off guard sometimes to where it's all so high and then, boom, here comes the low. I just think that was it.

*(On defense's ability to force turnovers the last two weeks)
*That was a point of emphasis to get the ball out during the week of practice and even out there on the field. Even if we didn't get it out, guys were trying to strip it out or whatever the case may be. We came up with something when we needed it so that was a good thing.

*(On the shifting and motion of the Lions offense)
*It was just something that you had to be alert on. I think they might have caught us off guard a couple of times, but that's just something that you have to be aware of. Mike Martz and his system, he comes into the game and at one point he has two quarterbacks in the game with [Josh] McCown, who used to be with the Arizona Cardinals. He was out at wide receiver and plus they had [Jon] Kitna. But we settled down.

*(On the team being where it wants to be)
*I think we're pretty far away. At this point in the season, I don't think that some of the problems that we're having we should be having. I think you can ask any guy in this locker room and they can tell you that. Not being able to get off the field on third down, stuff that was happening last week that is still happening this week. We have to try not to have those same mistakes that we had in the past in the present.

*(On facing Mike Martz's offense)
*When we faced them in 2004 there was a lot of misdirection, a lot of shifting and motioning. They were just trying to get guys off balance, a lot of changing of personnel and things like that. We knew what was going to happen. I can't say we knew exactly what was going to happen, how they were going to do it, but we knew what thye had been doing coming into the game.

Rosevelt Colvin, Linebacker

*(On the close win)
*The last two weeks in a row we have come out and played sloppy football on both sides of the ball. We gave up the ball and big plays and still came out with the win so we are fortunate. It's not going to cut it coming down the stretch at the end of the year, especially against some of the teams we have to face.

*(On the strip sack and turn over)
*I just beat my guy and the guys in the middle got a good push so he couldn't step up in the pocket, which he was doing all day long. The ball was there and we always talk about making game changing plays and we had a couple of guys do that in today's game. Mike Vrabel stepped up big and Asante Samuel came up with the interception and the fumble on the goal line that we recovered.

*(On the Lions' strengths)
*I think they do a lot of things well. They run and pass the ball well and they were very prepared. For us to be playing as flat as we did, it was unacceptable. We have to make sure we wake up earlier and get going faster because in playoff games you can't start off so flat.

*(On if the Patriots thought the game would be easy)
*Any time you go on the road and into a hostile environment it's difficult. Any time we line up to play another team we feel that they are going to bring their A-Game and that's what they did today. They came out there and tried to give their best effort and I think they did. We were fortunate to make some plays here and there, but its unacceptable for us to go out there and play like we did.

Dan Koppen, Center

*(On the team's slow start)
*I don't think we executed early on and the consistency wasn't there. When you are playing in December you just can't have that. Every game is important from now on and we need to come out and play better from the start.

*(On if the Patriots were fortunate to come away with a win)
*It was close but we are just happy to come away with a win. Fortunately we were able to come up with enough big plays to get the win. The defense played awesome down the stretch but the Lions played well today and deserve a lot of credit.

*(On the Patriots' fumbling problem)
*We need to fix that problem because that's going to turn around and bite us. Last week we gave away five and this week I think we gave away four and that's something we need to get corrected and move along from there.

*(On the offense getting on a roll in the 4th quarter)
*We changed up the place a little bit and went to a no huddle. We were able to get Tom [Brady] in a rhythm and make him feel comfortable and I think the change of pace has really helped us out in the second half.

Kevin Faulk, Running Back

*(On if he thinks that the offense has surpassed the doubters in the beginning of the season)
*To answer that question, I don't think that is even the closest thing in our mind right now. We are trying to worry about the little things because those are the things that help us improve our game on offense, defense and special teams.

*(On how frustrating it is to not play well in the beginning)
*Of course it's frustrating when your not playing well but we won the game and we just need to work on our mistakes. We just have to work harder next week and go play Miami cause that's the way this league is.

*(On if they were worried about Laurence Maroney getting hurt and the effect it may have on the running game)
*I don't think we were worried about the depth at that time and, first of all, we worry about Maroney's health and then we have to play a game. In the middle of the second quarter we knew he wasn't coming in but at that point of time we just said we have to play no matter what.

Tedy Bruschi, Linebacker

*(On need for improvement)
*I think the way we're going to look at it is we still had some of the same mistakes this week that we had last week and we tried to focus hard this week on [playing] cleaner, less penalties, less turnovers, but here we were again. Right now we get penalties, we get turnovers, and if we keep doing that it's not going to be good.

*(On mistakes)
*We always search for something to improve upon from week to week and usually it's only a couple of things. Now we have a lot of things.

*(On frustration of not performing better)
*We wanted to perform better today, no matter what the other team's record was, 2-9 or 9-2. We just wanted to perform better. We tried to focus on what we had to improve upon ourselves as a team. It's discoursing to see that we still have problems.

*(On the team being banged up)
*You get into Week 13 or 14, you're going to start to get aches and pains and no one is really 100 percent out there. But this is where you have to suck it up. If you suck it up and play hurt, tape it up and put some heat on it, try to help the ball club win.

Tully Banta-Cain, Linebacker

*(On the message to the team after the game)
*It is not going to be good enough when we start playing some better opponents. This time of the year teams are starting to … the cream is starting to rise. In order for us to get where we want to be, we have to play better than that. That is the bottom line.

*(On whether that was the same message delivered to the team last week)
*It is almost like you see some of the things that happened last week that weren't fully corrected this week. That is something that we really have to focus on. It is really just the little things. It is nothing that big, it is just the little things that are getting us.

*(On whether the defense was frustrated with being on the field so long in the beginning of the second half)
*We try not to allow ourselves to get frustrated. We have to just move on. Things happen and sometimes you can't control what happens in a game. The worst thing you can do is get frustrated. We just knew that we were better than we were playing. We just told ourselves that we had to keep pressing and keep moving forward and just eliminate the little things. That was the biggest thing that was killing us.

Mike Wright, Defensive End

*(On the feeling of the team on the sidelines when they were trailing and the impact of his fumble recovery)
*I felt pretty good. Our offense does a great job of responding to turnovers. I had confidence that the offense would do its job. For me to get a turnover like that at that point in the game, it was a blessing actually.

*(On whether the team realized they came out flat and if there was a wake-up call moment during the game)
*I think you have to wake yourself up. You have to see how the game is going and know that you are not playing to your abilities. I think everyone knew what they had to do in the second half. We didn't come out and do what we wanted to do as planned but we kept fighting and that is all there is to it. A win is a win.

*(On the ability of the team to succeed despite the turnovers and mistakes)
*It shows that we don't give up. To have that many turnovers and stuff like that happen in a game, it usually shouldn't go your way, but it did. It is a credit to the guys on this team that they don't give up and they are non-stop out there.

*(On his fumble recovery)
*I was back there and saw it get stripped. I saw it fall out. It was right by my feet and Tully [Banta-Cain] and another guy were on the ground. I felt myself kick it because I thought he had it. I felt myself kick it and it rolled out. The first instinct was to scoop and score, but I didn't know who was behind me. I'm all about securing the ball and giving it back to the offense and letting them do their job. It would have been great to have a touchdown and do all that stuff, but what if I would have dropped it. Where would we have been then? I just tried to secure it and do my job.

Artrell Hawkins, Safety

*(On the reason for the Lions success with the passing game)
*They were getting the ball out pretty quickly. They were utilizing their tailback in certain situations. We knew going into the game watching tape that they were a good passing team … better than Chicago in my opinion. They were hitting crossing routes and they were kind of playing off of what we were doing at first. We tried to make some adjustments during the game. They picked up a couple of big third downs there in the third quarter that kind of hurt us.

*(On what the feeling was in the huddle during those third down conversions)
*We were just chopping wood. It seemed like we played a long time tonight, but we kept faith. We had to get the ball out and at the end that is what we did. [Mike] Vrabel played a heck of a game. He helped us win today. I think he had three turnovers. That is a big game. To get plays like that out of an individual guy; that helps you win. We weren't disheartened. We were upset. We wanted to play better. We kept chopping wood. That is what you have to do to win. At the end, it turned out in our favor.

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