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Patriots Postgame Quotes

New England Patriots players comment on their game against the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field on Sunday, December 11, 2011.


On his reaction to his interception:
"I threw a pretty bad interception so he wasn't happy about it. A long line of coaches and players are pretty pissed at me after that, but [Offensive Coordinator] Billy [O'Brien] got to me first, so I deserved it."

On the interception play:
"I tried to throw it to Tiquan [Underwood] and they made a good play... We're both pretty emotional guys so that's what I deserve, you know? If you make bad plays, you are supposed to get yelled at by your coaches. This is not the first time and probably won't be the last. It was just, you can't do that in that situation and it was just a stupid play by me."

On Offensive Coordinator Bill O'Brien's reaction to the interception:
"I made a terrible play, so he just let me know I made a terrible play. It's football man, it's a game of emotion. It's athletics... I was looking there and then I was trying to throw to Tiquan [Underwood] in the back and was trying to get it over [tight end Rob Gronkowski] and there were two other guys on him and I put too much air on it. I gave the DB a chance to make a play."

On tight end Rob Gronkowski:
"He's tough. He's a good guy. He's a strong runner and always makes that catch. There were some great catches and runs that he made today and he's obviously a huge part of this offense. It's great to see him make plays like that today... He's a big guy and tough to bring down. He's a good route runner and good blocker and a smart player. [He's] very dependable and consistent. He's really been doing that all season. He needs to continue to do it. Obviously, it was a close game today and every play he [had] helped us win."

On performance in the red zone:
"We had a few plays where we were close today, especially in the red area, that we probably should have had three other touchdowns instead of three other field goals. When you don't convert in the red area, and we have opportunities, certainly not the plays or anything, it's just a real lack of execution by us players. We have to do a better job because a lot of the games are tight. A lot of times you look at how well you do in the red area and we just didn't do a very good job with that today."

On the offense having to score a lot:
"We are always trying to score. We moved the ball pretty well. We just didn't necessarily get it in the end zone when we needed to get in the end zone. The frustrating part about today is that we left a lot of points on the board.     The defense finished the game well and made a great play at the end to really save us."

*On the interception and what he should have done:    *
"You try to throw a ball where if your guy doesn't catch it, no one catches it. You look like you have a matchup and if it is not there then it is not there. You are trying to make a play and coach says make good ones. It wasn't a good play."

On the team clicking on all cylinders:
"We are capable of putting a lot of good plays together. We just need to do it consistently for 60 minutes. I think that is what you see out there. We had opportunities to make plays. For one reason or another, we were just a little off. We are still working at it. There is nothing perfect in football, unless you are the Packers."

*On 10-3 record:    *
"I think Coach [Bill Belichick] has high expectations for us. He challenges us every week to play better and more consistently. At times we do it and other times we don't. We are still looking to put together 60 minutes of football."        


On the single-season touchdown record for tight ends:
"What record?"

On getting the ball back after the record:
"Yeah, so, I mean, I got the ball back and everything so it was cool and everything, but it's cool to get a record and everything but it really [doesn't] matter. We got the team victory. We got the W and that's all that matters coming out. The defense played well at the end of the game. They got that interception which was huge. Can't be any better than coming out with a victory."

On his long reception in the first half:
"[Quarterback] Tom [Brady] just made a great throw. The defender was right there. He put it where no one else could get it besides me and I just made the catch and just noticed that the guy didn't touch me at all. So I got up, started running, and just happened to spin off a couple of guys and everything. I got down to like the 12 or something so it was a good play, big play, and it was a good pass. That's where it started was the pass."

On if he was sure he was not out of bounds on the play:
"I don't even know. There [were] no whistles or [anything] so I was just running. So, when I don't hear a whistle I just keep playing."

On being a mismatch for defenses:
"You just got to practice hard, you've got to run hard, and you got to go full speed at all times. It's the NFL. Those guys are big and those guys are all fast too so if you're not going full speed, they're just going to knock you down right away. They're going to get you down so just going full intensity the whole game."

On if he and Redskins safety DeJon Gomes were talking during the game:
"I don't even remember him getting in my face or nothing because they didn't talk garbage or nothing. They were just playing the game. [We] respect our opponents and everything. They played hard. I mean, they've got a great defense. They were going hard the whole game. It was just a tough battle throughout the whole game."

On if he sees more man or zone coverage:
"I mean, it depends on who we're playing. It depends on all that. Today it was a lot of man, definitely. I would say more like 75 percent man that game."

On running routes against linebackers versus against defensive backs:
"I mean, it is what it is. I mean, whoever is covering me, that's my job - to get open. So, whoever it is, I have to have a game plan to get open. If it's a guy that is just as big as me, I've got to figure out a way. If it's a guy faster than me, I've got to be able to use my body or something. So whatever it is, I got to do my job and get open."

On if it is difficult putting in perspective the accomplishments he has had:
"No it's not hard at all because that's how we roll around here. [I've] gotta stay humble and everything and we just keep going every game. We've got a big game next week against Denver already. That's all I'm thinking about, basically, already now. It's a team game and we got the victory and that's all that matters: getting the W for the team."

On if he thought he would have this type of success coming out of college:
"No, not at all. I mean, you just go out to practice. You go out to work every single day. You just don't know what's going to happen."

On the argument between quarterback Tom Brady and offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien:
"I didn't see it. Gotta go watch the tape."

On what he plans on doing with the ball from his record breaking touchdown:
"I don't know. Spike it. Practice my spikes."    


On the game:
"It was a hard-fought game. It was definitely a tough one. Luckily in the end we were able to come away with the victory. The defense stepped up big for us. We had a lot of mistakes out there, but in the end we came out with the victory and that is what matters."


On the defense's performance today:
"I pride myself on working hard and executing the plan. In all, it was a close game. Overall, as a team we just have to find a way to get better."

On slow starts:
"It is just a matter of finishing. Sometimes we start slow and end well or vice versa. There is a point in the middle of the game where something doesn't go our way or something in general like the mentality of doing what you have to do. It could just be a variety of things like overthinking and just not executing the plan. We just have to find a way to be consistent for four quarters."

*On if the officials explained the personal foul call against him:     *
"No, they didn't. I am sure that will be looked at tomorrow. It is unfortunate, especially when it comes to making a play. There was no intention of going low. I thought it was a good hit. The league has definitely been involved in protecting quarterbacks which I understand. That was my fault and I will try better to not put our defense in that situation."

On the intent of tackle for which he was flagged:
"It is unfortunate that that play was called. There was no intent. I was just trying to find a way to make a play."

On defensive lapses:
"We have three more games to go out there and compete. Denver is a great team and we have to analyze [them]. They have been known to show fourth quarter comebacks. In all they have been playing well, period, for four quarters. For us, whether it is offense, defense or special teams we just have to see how we can possibly get better because it is coming down to the wire now."

On his return to Washington:
"This season in itself has been such a blessing. The opportunity to do what I do and play with some great men on this football field. Overall, that was a way to contribute and try to put some points on the board and I did my job."


On if the late success raises the confidence of the defense:
"A little bit, but at the same time we still want to put together a full game and, you know, it was good enough today, but it probably won't be good enough any other week."         

On if the Redskins showed offensive looks that the Patriots didn't expect:
"We saw everything on film. Those guys just came out and executed the game plan well. You know, those guys have a good team and we just have to continue to improve."

On if he had his wind knocked out at the end of the game:
"No, no, just a little cramp in the calf. Sometimes when it's cold outside you don't think you're sweating, but you really are."

On the interception at the end of the game:
"Yeah, I think [cornerback] Tracy [White] made a great play on the ball and kind of separated the man from the ball and it just popped up and fell into my hands."

On the defense making plays when they needed them:
"Yeah, you know, it was good enough today, but it probably won't be good enough any other week. So we have to continue to improve and hopefully that happens."


On the fumble recovery for a touchdown:
"It's you against everybody else trying to fight for the ball; luckily I got it. We started fast on the defense. It's simple, when you talk about doing it as a football team, it's about starting fast and then finish. I think on the defense we started fast, then a little stumble in the fourth quarter, but finished the game with an interception. [You] can't complain about that. So, we have to continue to work. There are a lot of things that we can take from this game and work on and move forward."


On if the team has a sense of urgency:
"You've got to have that urgency. I think we are. What happened [was] we got a win today, but we know it won't be enough [going forward]. The focus now will be going into next week and seeing if we can do better."

On how to improve his play:
"You know, just being more consistent. I don't think confidence is a real issue, just going out there and playing and being consistent."

On if defenses target him more after he gives up a play:
"When you give up a play, you know, it's not going to stop you. They're not going to say, 'Oh, alright, we're done, let's move on.' You know, in this league they're going to keep going [to you]. So that's the attitude I take, you know, 'how can I help this team go out on the field and make plays?'"

On any adjustments the team made going into the fourth quarter:
"Oh, just playing [with] technique. I was thinking of what I was doing and just getting the job done. That's the biggest thing: being close on certain plays and just finishing."

On the team's red zone defense:
"I think it's an awareness. We know when they're in the red zone, we know our goal is to keep them out. So we're reminding ourselves of that and I think that's the biggest thing is awareness."

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