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Postgame DE Justin Tuck Interview


Q: Describe the defense's effort.A: Probably our best effort so far this year. I think the last three weeks - do or die games for us - we really came out and put things together, but it still feels like we can play better and we probably will have to next week going up to Green Bay.

Q: Besides being healthy, what's been the biggest difference with the play of the defense?A: Playing together. I think earlier in the year when we were trying to find our identity and kind of struggling there, a lot of individual stuff was showing up. Now it's just all about team effort and playing together as a team.

Q: Do you think you wore Atlanta down today?A: Maybe. They're a physical football team, too, but I feel like we executed better. It just seems like we were in the right places on defense. We didn't get as much pressure on Matt [Ryan] as we wanted to, but enough to rush him a little bit. He didn't have anywhere to throw the ball so our secondary did a great job of taking away their first and second reads. You talk about the talent that they have at wide receiver and tight end, but it all started up front - stopping Michael Turner and just limiting him. I think you can kind of say we did, but it was gradual. That's a physical football team, too.

Q: Can you talk about Canty, Joseph and Bernard?A: You have to think about this, the reason why we were able to let loose on the end was because we know those guys were going to hold it down inside. We've always had strong D-tackles. They might never get the credit that we have on the outside, but we've always had a strong presence at D-tackle. That's no different with Linval [Joseph], Rocky [Bernadrd] and Canty. Those guys have played well for us all year. It's nothing flashy, but they're as solid a bunch as anybody else in the league.

Q: You almost blocked the punt.A: You had to bring it up. I had forgotten about it. I think Coach Quinn has set some things up that allowed us to use our athleticism on the D-line as far as going in and rushing punts. I had an opportunity there. Everybody was saying that if I wasn't as big as I am now - six years ago I would have made that play. That was what everybody was saying. So I guess I've gotten slower. But yeah, I had an opportunity there. Couldn't get it, but hopefully I have an opportunity next week.

Q: What do you remember from the 2007 playoff game in Green Bay?A: Cold. I remember that. Coach Coughlin's face. I remember David Diehl's sweat had frozen on his hair, so he had icicles on his hair. What else? I remember us winning and that's the most important thing. Hopefully we can go back there and do it again. That's a talented football team.

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