The New England Patriots take on the New York Jets during Thursday Night Football at Gillette Stadium on Thursday, October 16, 2014.
REX RYAN PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT
RR: Obviously, you give up a third-and-19 for a touchdown and you blow coverage on a 50-yard pass, and all that, you aren't going to win many games regardless of how the game was played. Our guys gave everything they had, obviously, and didn't play the smartest game in the history of the sport, without question, on defense in particular. You know, to say it is a disappointing loss, I think is a fair assessment. I just, you know, we've been snake bit. I don't know how many touchdowns we have given up on third downs this year, when you've got them where you want them, but we've given up a bunch of them and most of the time it is our own fault. Well, that's tough to handle. I love the way our guys competed. I love the way we ran the football. And you know, it's just ridiculous to stand here after a loss, and to think where our team is at. It's not where this team should be. There is way too much fight, way too much heart and, you know, I just hope that it levels out. That we start getting some breaks and start making some breaks. With that, I will open up for questions.
Q: Rex, can you talk about the first half? Four times in the red zone and you had to settle for field goals.
RR: Yeah, you know, again we had a couple big penalties in the red zone that hurt us. One that took a touchdown off the board – a holding call – then we had another holding call. Most penalties in the red zone, we know that's hurt us. Again it played out really the way it has a lot of the season. At times, it looks like we are good enough to win and then we make too many mistakes. And obviously, those things hurt us.
Q: Rex, on the third-and-19 touchdown, [Danny] Amendola looked like he went inside, outside on that one. What could Antonio [Allen] have done differently on that one?
RR: No, I don't know, I have no idea – just the greatest route in the history of the game. I think we were shocked that he would run a route to the goal line.
Q: You had a two to one time of possession and didn't commit any turnovers and didn't win.
RR: No, anytime we've run 43 times, we would probably win too. You know, that was great, we were able to control the game. We fought, but we made enough mistakes on defense to cost us the win, obviously.
Q: Rex, what happened on that first touchdown? It looked like [Phillip] Adams and [Antonio] Allen..
RR: Just a great play on their part. They dialed it up perfect and it was just a great play. They executed.
Q: Rex, the second timeout that you used in the second half was a defensive time out. What happened there?
RR: No idea.
Q: Rex, you've said you hope it evens out. You've said that the last couple weeks. Does it feel like it is getting to late to even out? Now 1-6…
RR: Well, I don't know. What does that add up to for half the season? I don't know, I think we will be just fine. I know one thing: we are going to keep fighting. And people that don't understand it, they probably have never put on those pads before. We are going to fight our butts off and it doesn't matter who's in front of us or whatever. We know we are good enough to win.
Q: Rex, what was the message to the players in there?
RR: We know this game was there, it was there for us. Again, we made a couple costly mistakes and it ended up costing us the game.
Q: Rex, you seem almost shell shocked by it.
RR: I'm not shell shocked at all. I'm a little upset because our record is what it is. I'm not shell shocked by any stretch – by any stretch. We did what we wanted to do on them. We were able to control the football, we ran the football, did those things that it takes to win a game. We made too many darn mistakes. So shell shocked, I'm not shell shocked, by any stretch.
Q: Rex, as you alluded to, you guys did a lot of good things tonight, played well enough to win in your estimation. How much more frustrating did it make this then?
RR: It's really frustrating because this is a team you are playing your first divisional game. Obviously, these are the big dogs in our division. You know, nothing against Buffalo and Miami, they are playing well, but this team has won 10 years in a row, I think. Or 10 out of 11. So, this is the one where you are trying to beat them at their place and this is like the third time in a row that I thought we were good enough to beat them here. And we come away with a loss.
Q: Rex, the first timeout in the second half that you called, what did you see there offensively that you wanted to switch?
RR: I don't even remember guys. Again, I probably saw that we weren't lined up right.
Q: Rex, you said about hoping that the breaks level out. The guy who blocked the field goal for them, Chris Jones, was the same guy who had the penalty last year that gave you the second chance. Does that symbolize the difference between this year and last year?
RR: I'm sure….that is a great analogy. A 58-yard field goal guys, he's got to hit a low line drive, obviously. So, the kid made a great play.
Q: Coach, you kept just coming up with field goals, how do you look at that?
RR: Well, you can't trade, you know, field goals for touchdowns obviously. And that's what happened. They, obviously at the half, were able to hit the two touchdowns on us in the first half and even though we really controlled the game, obviously, got it down there and just a little short in the red zone.
Q: What did you tell them at halftime, given the fact that you had dominated the time of possession?
RR: We knew all we had to do is go out and do what we were doing. Just play smarter and get off the field.
Q: The commitment to the run, how much of that was to test the Patriots defense without Jerod Mayo?
RR: It had nothing to do with Patriots defense and without Mayo or anybody else – Nick Buoniconti. We were able to run the football today and that was because of the type of people we have, not the ones that they don't have.
Q: This is probably as agitated as I think I have ever seen you after a loss.
RR: Yeah, I think so.
Q: I mean, you have had difficult losses before. What is it about this one that makes you so agitated?
RR: I mean, you figure out what our record is and you tell me if, I mean, that probably ties into it a little bit. I mean, the fact that we've had three opportunities against this team at this building, three games in a row that we thought we had a great chance to win and we came up short each time.
Q: Geno's [Smith] play tonight and the two point conversion, talk about that, Rex?
RR: Well, obviously, we would not have called it if we didn't think we could execute it. We liked our matchups and unfortunately we came up short with it.
Q: Rex, did you think of not kicking onside and kicking it away?
RR: No, because I thought it would give up a chance, you know, and obviously we only had the one timeout. You know, the way they were punting the ball, I was like let's just go for it. It gives us one opportunity, we only had the one timeout. So, I just wanted to give us an opportunity to field it.
Q: What about Geno's play overall?
RR: I thought Geno played extremely well. I think he gave us an opportunity to win. I love the fact that he took off with it and when he does that, when he's in that kind of rhythm, we do well. And I thought, obviously, there are probably a couple plays that we wish we had back, but other than that, I thought Geno really played well.
GENO SMITH PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT
Q: How frustrating was it to get down there in first half and come away with field goals four times?
GS: I mean I wouldn't say frustrating, any time you can get points is positive. We were moving ball pretty good. Coming into it, we knew they had a really good red-zone defense, we knew they'd man us up, and unfortunately we didn't get seven points on those drives but we did get field goals and kept ourselves in the game, and credit to Nick Folk for cashing in on those.
Q: The two last drives, the one that put you behind two and the one with the blocked field goal, when you're driving down the field what are you thinking at that moment?
GS: Just staying with the moment, sticking to my fundamentals, sticking to my reads, not trying to do too much. I think you can overthink in some of those situations and kind of outthink yourself, and I've kind of done that in the past. But today I just stuck to my fundamentals and what I've been coached to do.
Q: If somebody had said before the game that you guys would possess for 40 minutes and not turn it over and still lose, what would you say?
GS: It's tough. It's a team game. We felt like we had an opportunity there, especially at the end, and just fell short, two points short.
Q: Rex [Ryan] seemed kind of agitated and even hurt by losing again, losing this way. How do you guys take that?
GS: We all are. It's extremely frustrating because I know the dedication in that locker room and I know the quality of men we have and the way that we prepare throughout the week. And I believe that we need to just stick to it and it's going to happen for us, and we have the guys. We have what we need to win. We just fell short. We shot ourselves in the foot time and time again, and today I don't think we did, but obviously we didn't do enough.
Q: How are you physically? It looks like you took kind of a low shot there.
GS: Physically I feel fine, just normal nicks and bumps of the game. But overall, I feel fine.
Q: Geno, on the two point conversion pass, what did you see on that play?
GS: Jace [Amaro] did a great job of getting open, I've got to give him a better ball. That's completely on me. He ran a great route and I didn't give him a good enough ball.
Q: At 1-6, do you still feel like this team can still do what it set out to do in the preseason?
GS: Well, yes. It's still there for us, and I know there's no quit in us, and I know that everyone is going to take it upon themselves to get better this week and go out there next week with the mindset that we're going to win the game because that's all we can do. We're not going to sit here and sulk about losing the games because that's going to make things worse, and what we need to do is get better and get back to being ourselves. Obviously today was tough in the manner that we lost because we felt like we had them, but that's how the game goes sometimes.
Q: How do you assess your own performance?
GS: Not good enough. Spotty at times, I had opportunities there but just didn't get the job done.
Q: You were toe-to-toe with Tom Brady, you don't take any consolation from that?
GS: No, we lost and it's a team game. Tom and I were not on the field by ourselves, it was all of us out there and today they bet us. Hats off to the Patriots, they beat us.
Q: How helpful was Chris Ivory, running for 107 yards? How big was he for your offense?
GS: Huge, man, huge. He and Chris Johnson did a great job. I think what happened last week, we were kind of struggling with the run. I knew this week they were going to be running extra hard. They wanted to get that ball. We talked about getting our run game up all week and today was definitely a positive sign. It allowed us to continue to move the ball and move the chains. We stayed on schedule and were able to get us some third and manageable downs, which I think we converted for the most part. But once again, we can talk about positive things we did, and they are positive and we do appreciate them, but we didn't win the game.
Q: Geno, your next game isn't until nine days from now. With this extra time, maybe this weekend do you guys almost need a mental break?
GS: Well there is no mental break. It's a strain, this game, playing in the NFL it's a week to week grind and every team that you face is going to be tough and you need to mentally grind, and that's what you know going into it. It's going to be a mental and physical grind. We're not going to take any mental breaks. I think it's better that we just can recover and get our bodies rested and allow ourselves to kind of regroup and get back to work.
Q: What happened on the play that you had to leave? What exactly happened?
GS: Oh, just a low hit. I felt some pain in my knee, but thank God it went away and I was able to get back to it.
Q: Did you need a follow-up look at it, an MRI?
GS: No, no I'm fine.
Q: You feel OK then?
Antonio Allen, Safety
(On the final Patriots' touchdown)
"I knew the ball had to go in the end zone. He kind of ran me up a couple of yards and then settled down and brought it back up. I looked to the quarterback and then touchdown…(inaudible)…We were in zone coverage and you can't look at the quarterback in that situation. You know they are in the end zone and the ball has to go in the end zone. I just have to do a better job in playing leverages and keeping people in front of me."
(On the first series on defense and the Patriots' touchdown)
"It was all me. I didn't play the right assignment. It was blown coverage and it should have been half field and I should have said something. I just have to do my job."
Jace Amarao, Tight End
(On how frustrating the loss is)
"It's a loss. We played really well on offense, over 400 yards total offense, but too many field goals and that hurt us today. We didn't execute in the red zone as well as we wanted to and just missed a couple of plays to win the game."
(On where the team goes from here)
"We need to stay positive and keep moving forward. We feel like we could be anywhere from middle of the pack to one of the top teams if we could just make a couple of plays here and there."
Quinton Coples, Linebacker
(On the frustrating loss and the coach's reaction)
"Very frustrating. We just have to get a win and we have to do whatever it takes. We let this one get away from us and now we have to make adjustments and move forward. He [Rex Ryan] was emotional just like we are. This is a conference rival and a game we needed to win. We dropped the ball."
(On the rivalry with the Patriots)
"It is a rivalry. We tend to play well in these games. It should always be a good game."
(On whether the Jets let this game get away)
"No question. We should have won this game. They won, you can't knock what they did."
(On Whether the Patriots did anything offensively that surprised the Jets)
"Not at all, absolutely not."
Eric Decker, Wide receiver
(On the loss)
"In the position we are in, we were hungry to get one, especially a division game. Unfortunately, we didn't come up with a victory."
(On how the team played)
"We can take a lot of positives from this, but at this point we need a win, period. We've got to go back to work and focus on the task at hand. We have to keep the focus small because if you start worrying about what people are saying outside the building, or where we are at compared with everyone else you are going to get caught up in all that."
D'Brickashaw Ferguson, Tackle
(On the Jets running game)
"It is something we really tried to emphasize. I have to give credit to our backs. They did a great job today. Chris Ivory, Chris Johnson, they went out and had phenomenal individual performances. We were just excited how we came out today. We made an emphasis during practice and were able to execute and perform well on the ground. We always go out there and we are a competitive team. We realize each game is going to be a battle. We just try to fight our best. We did some nice things but unfortunately it just wasn't enough to win the game. We are very encouraged and we know we can pay good ball."
Nick Folk, Kicker
(On having to settle for a field goal so many times tonight in the red zone)
"That's a good question for the offense, not really me. I just try to do my part; whenever I'm called out there I just try to go make my kicks."
(On the last field goal and having to kick it low)
"I tried to drive it a little bit. I was told my line was at the 40 [yard-line], so I tried to give it a good ride. I felt like I hit it pretty good – it's just a bummer that it didn't get past eight yards."
(On practicing long kicks in the pregame)
"We didn't go terribly too far in the pregame – pregame [weather] was a little different than it was at the end of the game. At the end of the game it was a lot calmer – pregame it was a little windy, there was a little rain, mist I guess if you want to call it that. So, we didn't get back there, but towards the end of the game the ball was traveling pretty well. It would have been a good one try to let one fly."
Breno Giacomini, Tackle
(On the Jets running game)
"It was something we have focused on for a few weeks now. We are just trying to get better. We did that but we didn't do good enough because we couldn't finish the game. That is something we have to try to do next time. Nothing matters unless you get the 'W'. That is what we came out here for but we didn't get that accomplished today. So it is back to the drawing board. We are going to get better from this game. We have to find a way to make one or two more plays. To come in this hostile environment and play the way we did today, to be one play away, or two plays, it is a tough pill to swallow."
Chris Ivory, Running Back
(On whether the loss was as tough as it gets)
"Yeah, I think we fought hard and things were coming together. The result is not showing on the scoreboard, but I think we are getting there."
(On how it feels to come up short at the end)
"There's a lot of things that go into it, whether it's a play or two that comes up short we just know we've got to come out on top one of these games."
(On whether he was happy the way he ran the ball)
"The offensive line did a great job. I thought we moved the ball really well tonight, we've just got to score a little more when we get to the red zone instead of taking three's, that's the difference for a win for us."
Chris Johnson, Running Back
(On how tough was the loss)
"We gave everything we had and at the end we were right there. We gave ourselves a chance to win but it didn't go our way at the end."
(On the running game)
"The offensive line did a great job pushing those guys back and giving us lanes to run. We just ran hard and kept our foot on the gas."
(On whether they felt like they let the Patriots off the hook)
"Yeah we feel like we did. We had a chance to win the game and they had a late block of the field goal. We've just got to keep fighting hard and continue to try and get some victories on the board."
David Nelson, Wide receiver
(On keeping focused after this loss)
"We should just continue battling. We've got a lot of guys in this room that are going to come out and continue to play, and continue to fight for each other. There is no quit in this team, you saw it today and we have a job to do. Right now we've got to battle out of this hole. We've got to lock arms together and do our jobs."
(On the tough loss)
"That was a hard one, we left it all out there. We had guys battling, we had guys injured that came out today fighting through injuries, and moving the ball well offensively. We just couldn't put it in the red zone the first quarter. We still had a chance at the end of the game. We just couldn't finish it. It was a hard loss."
(On Geno Smith)
"I thought he had his best game. Just because when it wasn't there, he used his legs. On the drive we scored at the start of the second half, he just took a negative play and turned it into a positive play on a big third down. He was moving the ball and managing the game really well, and getting us out of bad plays. He was just in the zone today." Calvin Pace, Linebacker
(On the tough loss)
"Terrible. It was just terrible because the offense did a hell of a job. We just gave up too many plays. It was a lot of situations where I just want to say positive things about what our offense did tonight. We didn't play bad defensively, but we didn't play well enough against a team like New England. Little things turn into big things. You have to give them credit. They made plays when they had to and defensively we didn't."
(On the effort)
"It was a heck of an effort by everybody, but you just don't see it in key situations when we can't get off the field. You make a mistake here and there and some things you can get away with, but not with the Patriots and not here in Foxborough. When you make a mistake against a Hall of Fame quarterback he is going to find it and when we did that, he [Tom Brady] did find it."