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Patriots Postgame Quotes

New England Patriots players comment on their 33-10 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers at Gillette Stadium on Sunday, November 30, 2008.

Kevin Faulk, Running Back
(On if the first half went how the team wanted it to go)
"It is not about how you wanted it because we made some mistakes in the first half too. It was close where you wanted it to be at that point in the game against a team like that."

(On if he saw Ryan Clark's hit on Wes Welker that knocked him out the game)
"No, because I think I was blocking at the time. You could tell that was a hard hit because if Wes Welker stays down then it must have been a pretty hard hit."

(On the Patriots third down efficiency)
"Well you just answered the question already. We had four, five turnovers in the second half. You can't have that against a team like the Steelers."

(On the third quarter turnovers)
"It's always frustrating when you turn the ball over and then when you finish the game with a loss. That's the most frustrating thing you can do, but hey the season's not over yet. We have to come back, watch the film, look for our mistakes and come back and be ready to play next week."

(On how the weather affected the receivers)
"It's our job. It doesn't matter what the weather conditions are we have to try to execute and do our job."

(On how Matt Cassel responded to adversity)
"It's not just about Matt, it's about this whole team. We have to respond to adversity right now, we lost the game and we have to come back and bounce back next week."

Tedy Bruschi, Linebacker
(On today's game)
"We try to pride ourselves on being a fundamentally-sound football team. When you have mistakes like we made out there it is just not good football. The ball was on the ground; they were breaking runs like they did and they are able to convert on third down, then all of a sudden you have a score that looks like it did on the scoreboard."

(On the poor weather conditions during the game)
"Rain is rain. Snow is snow. Sun is sun. It is all about who takes care of the football better out there and who is able to force turnovers better out there. They did a better job of that than we did."

(On if he felt the offensive turnovers made it hard on the defense)
"No, I wouldn't say that. I can definitely tell you about how our attitude was in the huddle in there. When a situation is presented to us like that you just have to deal with it no matter where the football is. Whether [the football] is on the one-yard line or they get a fumble on the kickoff and they are in the red zone already. I think their offense came out fired up but I think we were up to the challenge. We wanted to get a stop and maybe force them to three [points] or try and get a turnover ourselves. I think we forced them to three [points] once. That was one of the first games I have been involved in where it seemed like the ball was on the ground so much. All of sudden, we are out there again. Whenever we got out there, it was just 'this is what we have in front of us, and now we have to do our job."

Sammy Morris, Running Back
(On the Patriots second half struggles)
"Obviously not enough happened for us as a team. Turnovers will kill you, especially playing a team like Pittsburgh."

(On what the team will have to do to stay in the playoff race)
"A couple weeks ago people were asking if it was a must-win and I would say that at this point of the season they are all must win. Obviously with a loss this late in the season it's going to put a little more emphasis on this next game, on [it] being a bigger game for us."

(On the Patriots third down efficiency)
"That's the big thing about third downs, it keep drives going or it cuts them short. Especially when you go three-and-out, it cuts them short pretty abruptly. You add the turnovers and the scoreboard reflected [the outcome]."

Ellis Hobbs, Cornerback
(On whether every game is now a must-win)
"I mean, starting in the beginning of the season, you have to think like that anyway. To play the way we do and lose, you just can't expect the playoffs to be handed to us. It's a competitive league this year."

(On what needs to be corrected)
"I don't want to jump to any conclusions. I have to see the film myself. First off, I'll point the finger at myself. I'll do whatever I can do to get better — hopefully, everybody else will do the same thing — and if everybody gets better individually, and as a team and just press that much harder, I think we can turn it around for this West Coast swing."

(On the weather and the turnovers)
"This wasn't our first time playing in crazy conditions. We've just got to make more plays on our side of the ball. We've just got to make more plays on offense and defense."

Matthew Slater, Wide Receiver
(On fumbled kickoff return)
"There's no excuse. You have to field the ball. Yeah, it's wet. Yeah, there's rain. But I have to do my job."

(On the emotions he felt)
"I'm frustrated. I cost my team the game. I just have to continue to work as long as I can, as hard as I can and go from there."

(On whether he saw the ball clearly)
"I saw the ball. There's no excuse. I just feel like I let the team down. You can't give up the ball inside the 10, or the 5-yard line, whatever it was. Like I said, I have to do my job. It's as simple as that. There are no excuses."

Jabar Gaffney, Wide Receiver
(On the Patriot turnovers in the third quarter)
"It was frustrating. We had the ball coming out in the second half and it was time to get back into the game and we let some opportunities go."

(On if the weather was a factor)
"Both teams played in it, so you can never make an excuse for the weather. You just have to go play whatever the conditions."

(On being 1-for-13 on third downs)
"You can't win like that. You have to pick up third downs and keep the ball and we didn't do a good job of that."

Logan Mankins, Guard
(On the play of the Patriots offense)
"Today was a pretty big disappointment for us. We came into the game with high hopes and we didn't play very well. I can only speak for the offense but the second half was pretty ugly. You guys saw it, you saw a lot of the mistakes we made and you can't win playing games like that."

(On the Steelers' defensive line)
"They have some pretty good players. I think a few of the pressures just came off the edge, they got around the edge and they got to [Matt] Cassel. It's going to happen, and if we get another shot at them or when we play next week we can't let that happen again."

(On momentum from the second quarter to the third)
"I thought we had momentum coming out of the half. We drove down and missed a field goal but at least we drove down. We came back out, we're driving the ball and it was second-and-one, sack, third-and-long, punt. That stuff kills you. Right after that we have the fumbled kickoff return, two strip sacks and an interception. You can't beat Pop Warner teams doing that."

(On the offense)
"I thought the first half was fine. We moved the ball. We didn't score many points but we were moving the ball up and down the field I thought. The second half was just chaos. Turnovers, turnovers, turnovers. It was pretty ugly. Pittsburgh is just one of those teams that they do what they do. They are good at it."

(On mistakes)
"When you go one play, turnover, one play turnover, you are not going to get into any rhythm at all. You are going to stay cold. That puts our defense in a tough, tough situation. For the most part they held their own. They were given the ball down by our [goal line] numerous times and [our defense] stopped them. The defense, they gave us a chance but we (the offense) didn't give them a chance."

Mike Wright, Defensive Lineman
(On the balance of the Steelers offense)
"I can't speak for the rest of the defense but I didn't play the way I wanted to. I don't think they got me off balance at all. I just have to play better. Have to play the run better and have to play the pass better. Also have to get more pressure on the quarterback and be more physical. I don't know how it got out of hand. I don't know. We need to be more physical and need to do our job better. That is all there is to it."

Brandon Meriweather, Safety
(On the Steelers offense)
"They have a great quarterback and actually they have a great offense. We expected them to come in and do exactly what they did, they just executed to perfection. They made plays and we didn't. That is pretty much what got the game away from us."

(On the second half)
"They just came to play in the second half and we didn't. They did a great job of keeping us honest. They did a great job of running the ball and passing the ball. We really couldn't just key in on one thing."

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