It didn’t start out the way we wanted to, but along the way it got a lot better. A lot of the young men that had a chance to play under these circumstances with some people injured came through and did well.
Q: You asked a lot of
A: We said that this would be Rueben’s opportunity, that we needed him, that we counted on him today. I mentioned that and I thought he did play well. He made some key plays there when we were trying to get ourselves going with some momentum and he came through under those circumstances. I’ll have to see the rest of the game, see what that was all about, whether he continued in that fashion or not. Again, he was one of those guys that needed to play well for us to win and he did play well and got us going.
Q: Are the slow starts at home alarming?
A: Well we don’t plan on it. We talk about starting well, starting fast and that’s what the idea was. But we did talk about finishing, too, and we did finish.
Q: When the running game clicks like it did today, do you think about changing the gameplan balance?
A: No. No, I think the balance factor. I don’t know how many rushes we had versus how many throws, but I think it was close because it sounded like the rushing and the passing yardage was very close.
Q: You’ve benched running backs in the past because of fumbling. Did you think about that today after Bradshaw fumbled on the first possession?
A: No. No. No. I think when you look at the tape it’s a little bit more freakish than you think. I think there was, upfront, some blocking going on. I saw his arm leave his side rather violently, I don’t really know how that happened, but I’ll look for it. He felt bad about it, but it didn’t change his demeanor or how he went about his business. He’s been very, very cognizant, following the one season when he did turn the ball over. With ball security he has done a pretty good job.
Q: How about Brown’s interception? Think it turned the momentum?
A: It sure did. We came back and it was almost one-for-one there for him. I was very happy about that. It did give us great field position and take one away from them, well at least three. Chase’s play at the end of the game was a big play, the interception right there.
Q: What did you think about your run defense?
A: Well, it got to the point where they needed to throw the ball more than they could run it with the score. They did have success and that’s a very good running back and it’s very difficult, he’s a low target tackle guy and if you don’t wrap on him, he obviously made some plays after the first hit. So we definitely have to shore that up. That’s a good runner.
Q: Where does Bradshaw’s competiveness rank?
A: He’s way up there. I can’t give you, I don’t know what you are comparing him to, but he is as physically tough and as competitive as anyone I have ever been around.
Q: You didn’t get any hits on the opposing quarterback today. Why?
A: I wish I had the answer for you. I know everybody wants to get rid of the ball quickly and there are a lot of three-step in there, there is no doubt about that. But there are also chances and we are just not taking advantage of it. We just keep working. Before I see the tape, I can’t really tell you what this team did. I can tell you what other teams have done in terms of chipping and three-step drops and keeping extra people around. This team did keep the back around and he was active.
A: Well, we’ll get to that shortly. Let’s enjoy this one for now.
Q: You threw the challenge flag. Why?
A: They wouldn’t let me. We thought the spot was bad. So to create more attention to it, I threw the flag. I was afraid they weren’t going to come over if I didn’t. I was trying to raise holy heck there but I couldn’t challenge.
Q: What did you think of
A: There you go. He is obviously a nice change. He broke some arms and he was gone before you could blink an eye. On the other hand, our kickoff return went back into the not-so-good stage and our kickoff coverage wasn’t very good either against a very good, proven product, without a doubt, another big, strong guy who is difficult to tackle.
Q: Did the three points at the end of the half swing the momentum?
A: We are always trying to get as many as we can. We thought it was a relatively safe circumstance we were in. We got the ball over midfield with a run. We took our last timeout and we threw a designed play. We got the penalty and the penalty put us in field goal position with four seconds left. It’s all part of trying not to be so aggressive you put yourself in harm’s way, penalize yourself and turn the ball over. But when that circumstance is there and you are around midfield, we are playing for points.
Q: How about
A: He made a nice play on the on-side. That was kind of goofy, I don’t know if that could be duplicated that kind of chip. But he made a nice play on that. He was right on the spot. He’s a worker and hustler and he played a lot. He had to play a lot.
Q: Was there any panic after the first couple of minutes and you were down?
A: No, there wasn’t any. There wasn’t any. But there was some concern on my part anyway.
Q: What happened on the first touchdown pass to Gordon?
A: It was a duplicate. It was a duplicate to something someone else had done.
Q: How about Eli leading the team back?
A: We did an outstanding job with that. Fought his way back with that. We did a nice job coming right through the third quarter. There were times when we wanted more, but we get into those lulls and we don’t make a first down and we don’t want the ball to come back to the other guy. But he obviously played very well. On the interception at the end, I’d have to look at that, I don’t know what the devil happened there.
Q: Is Eli the reason everyone stays so calm?
A: Knowing he is standing behind them, yeah, that will do it.
Q: Did Osi go to the hospital?
A: Osi’s son is in the hospital. We’ll have to wait to hear. I hear it was an asthma attack but we’ll have to wait to hear.