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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

08-23-2008 - Post Game Quotes

Head Coach Jon Gruden

(On Antoine Cash injury) We did get word on Antoine Cash and he does have a neck injury. We do not know the exact severity but he is moving around and signs are good. But thats a scary thing and we are praying for him. But we do have good news from the standpoint that he is moving around and we will get final answers from the doctors shortly. I hope he is all right, number one.

(On the game) I would just like to say that I am proud of our football team. We have some tough decisions to make. We have to reduce our roster. That was a horrific way to start the game. We did some good things despite about seven or eight plays that were just terrible tonight.

(On Jeff Garcia) I think it was not trademark Jeff Garcia. I think for all of the young quarterbacks out there no matter what anyone tells me, I would just say you need to practice. And this is a hard game. I think we fumble on the first third and one. Then we get the ball back and we throw an interception on a naked. He is trying to do too much in that situation. An interception in a tight red zone was a great one by one of the Jaguar defenders. But again, I think he tried to do a little too much a little too soon. We have to get them back on the practice field. We have to get them in the fold in terms of his reps. He will be okay but there were some situations today that he tried to get way too much out of him.

(On Garcia being rusty) It is rust. He hasnt practiced. He missed the first few days of training camp and missed about a month. This is a very hard game, timing, rhythm, feeling the pocket.

WR Michael Clayton

(On his touchdown reception) It was a play that we worked on all week. On a blitz, it was quick release and Jeff stood in there and made a good throw.

(On how his training camp has gone so far) Training camp was excellent, we worked hard. We put a lot of work in the offseason and our offense has really built since last year. Guys are working hard, the level of competition out there is making everybody better. I am just excited to be on the team this year and I am really excited with what we have to offer as an offense.

(On the competition at the wide receiver position) We know everybody definitely deserves to be on the team but you cant reward everybody. It makes it tough to be with the guys everyday at wide receiver, we have a great group of guys, one of the best group so I have ever been around since I have been in the league. The older, veteran guys will tell you the same thing. Everybody is out there making plays and I think the new guys have done a great job at knowing this offense and putting it on tape. There are a lot of good things on tape, and they build their resume every game.

C Jeff Faine

(On the offensive line) We started off a little slow with the turnovers but I thought we bounced back and made some plays. It was good to get Jeff Garcia back out there and let him get into a rhythm a little bit. We just have to overcome those turnovers and keep moving.

(On making a comeback late in the game) After all those turnovers we had in the first half, to still be in the game, with turnovers being so key in this league, it is definitely a good thing.

QB Jeff Garcia

(On his performance) It looked rusty I felt. Obviously not having played in the first two preseason games, having not practiced a lot, not that I expected it; I dont want those things to happen. I made some decisions that are not indicative to how I play the game and I probably forced the issue a couple of times. It is something I can learn from and grow from, and I know that once I get more reps in practice, get more opportunities, I will feel that much better and more comfortable out there.

(On how he feels physically after the game) I am not 100 percent yet but I felt like I was to a point where I could get out there and compete. I felt comfortable enough to move around in the pocket, to do what I had to do. I know I will just get healthier from here and I will be ready to go come season time.

DT Chris Hovan

(On the defensive line) We knew that Jacksonville is a down hill, smash mouth offense and we needed to stop the run and the onus has been on the defensive line to get pressure so we knew we had to get after David Garrard and screw up his rhythm and I think we were pretty good for the most part in the first half.

(On him pressuring the quarterback when he threw the interception) We were coming on the blitz, I had outside contain, I beat the offensive tackle and he still had the ball. That never really happens to me so I laid my hands on it and Ronde Barber got the interception. It was a great play by him and I am just glad I could help on the play.

(On the defensive line getting pressure on the quarterback) Pretty much the Tampa two is predicated on four linemen getting after the quarterback. We are not trying to throw a lot of blitzes out there, this whole defense, since 1996, has been based on four guys getting to the quarterback, so the onus is on us. We know that we have to get that rush, we know that we have to change the outcome of the game by hitting the quarterback or causing interceptions. We are going to go back to work tomorrow, get ready for a tough Houston team on Thursday and then hopefully it carries over to the season against New Orleans.

(On if the team is where it needs to be right now) I think so; I think Coach Gruden has done an excellent job with the team throughout training camp. I think we have great depth at a lot of positions right now which gives us a lot of flexibility going into the season. I think that we have the formula right now for success.

QB Luke McCown

(On his long run) I think I need to run more after practice, I was a little gassed after that. I was just trying to come back and get some completions. It is tough, at that part of the game, when youre down and they are playing real soft zone coverage, unfortunately you have to check it down a lot and our backs did a great job of making some plays after the catch. We have to finish a little better I think, we just came up short this time.

(On committing turnovers for the first time this preseason) We have to clean that up. Turnovers are the greatest indicator, as far as stats go, for wins and losses in this league. You cant turn the ball over and expect to win, so we have to clean that up.

LB Barrett Ruud

(On having to overcome a short field) It is going to happen during the year at some point. We play a lot of good teams that are going to force turnovers eventually so it is good to face that adversity.

(On gaining momentum after CB Ronde Barbers interception) They are a good team too. I thought we did a good job battling back because we got into a 10-0 hole pretty quick. We did a good job of fighting back, we just came up a little short in the end.

(On losing for the first time in the preseason) You never want to lose, but it is a learning tool. We are going to look at the film and learn from it and that is all you can do.

WR Maurice Stovall

(On his performance) I think I played fairly well. You know I think I did a pretty good job in the run game, digging out safeties and being physical with the corners. The passing game, I had a few catches, but you know anytime you watch film, there are things that you could have done better. You know I may think that I did a pretty good job but we will watch the film.

(On the turnovers) I really dont know what the excuse is for that. Were professionals and we cant start out like that, especially playing at home. We should come out faster, you know we have a mature offense and weve been together for a while, so there is nothing that we cant correct and we will definitely get it corrected and do better for the next game.

(On the play of the quarterbacks) I think they did a good job. Again when you watch tape you always feel like at the end of the game you either did a good job or a bad job. When youre in the media room and youre watching film it can be different. In our meetings we will find out who did well and who didnt and things that we can correct and get it corrected.

DE Greg White

(On the productivity of the defensive line) I think it can always be better. I think we showed that we can at least put pressure on them, that we can finish and get some sacks.

(On the versatility of the defensive line) We have a lot of guys that go both ways. It makes all of us viable. We can go inside, outside, go left, right. Gaines can go left or right. It works and fits within the system.

(On feeling more comfortable at either the left or right position) I like to say Im more comfortable on the right side but Ill play wherever the coaches want me to play.

OL Jeremy Zuttah

(On the performance of his first start) Im getting better every time I go out. I just try to keep improving and try to get more comfortable.

(On adapting to the special challenges of playing guard) Well you have the biggest and baddest dude lined up on defense on you every time. Its not like these guys are slow. Theyre 330 pounds and they get off the ball so you are going against a physical specimen every play.


Head Coach Jack Del Rio

(Opening statement) I thought it was a nice way to start this evening, you know the kickoff unit was strong early. We were starting with good field position defensively, forced turnovers, defense was stingy early in taking the ball away. Offensively taking the short field getting some points; it was nice. I thought the way we started the second half, wanted to play a little bit in the third quarter came out after halftime. I thought it was a nice job for our offense to go down and get seven points to start the third quarter. So all and all a solid effort tonight. Certainly one that were pleased with to go back and get back to work. Obviously we got a lot of work to do yet but its always a lot more fun to do it after you have done some things well come out of here with a victory. So way too many penalties I know that is one thing I didnt like seeing. We will take a good look at that, make sure we are on top of that, correct the reasons why they are happening. It was great to see both Reggie Williams and Reggie Hayward return this week and be able to help us play. It wasnt any huge contributions in terms of some monster performance by either one but both good football players, glad to see them both on the field making plays for us. On the injury front we are in pretty good shape. I know Maurice [Jones-Drew] will be the first question you are going to ask. He had a mild sprain and we dont think it is going to be anything major. So obviously in this type of situation here it makes sense to hold him back and put it on ice and get him ready for another day. Looking forward to getting back to work. We got a short week.

(On Garrards performance other than his interception) David played pretty sharp, did a nice job in that situation there we would like for him chuck it up to the bleachers or dirt it or take off and run or do something. We dont want to put that ball in to coverage there, but for the most part he operated effectively tonight moved the ball, moved the ball around, threw it fairly accurately and made good decisions.

(On Garrards protection) Well Tampas played good defense the whole preseason, they played good D again tonight. I told Monte Kiffin hes doing a great job with those guys. I dont know how many times we were sacked but hes getting hit more than I like to see. I dont like my quarterback getting hit at all. We ended up taking, I think, on a couple of short yardage, a couple of third and twos, if Im not mistaken where we took our sacks. We really would not like to take sacks in those situations. Weve got to do a better job of making sure we have design and knowledge of what we are going to do in those situations and execute a little better. Clearly, those are very convertible situations, we should convert those at a very high percentage. Definitely shouldnt be getting sacked in those situations.

LB Mike Peterson

(On linebackers being the strongest unit on defense) Of course. Its every year. Youre talking to a linebacker, of course Im going to say that.

(On what is making the team so strong this year) I think its probably because guys have been here. We dont have many young guys and guys who have been here for a while know the system, along with athletes. Ten years ago, they were recruiting or drafting 260 or 250 pound linebackers. Now theyre drafting small athletic linebackers, guys that can do more than one thing. We have athletes all across the board.

QB David Garrard

(On the way the offense played tonight) Yes, I was very happy with the way things worked tonight. We executed the plays necessary, scored in the red zone. The defense did a great job of getting us the ball with a short field. We wanted to make sure we made the points to come out in the second half, start off with a good drive and we did. We went down and scored. It was a good night for us tonight and we need to build on it.

(On the wideouts) I was happy with the receivers. I think they did a great job of catching the ball, we had a couple drops, but overall, I thought it was a good night for them. I was happy to see Reggie (Williams) back on the field. He did a great job. Hopefully, we can get Jerry (Porter) back and get him going in these next few weeks coming up before we get the opener. Its going to be a fun time for us right now. We just need to make sure we get back to the grind next week. We have a short week. We got the Redskins coming up, so we have to be prepared and finish this thing off right.

(On the turnovers tonight) We have to do a better job. We cant go out there and slow ourselves down. We got some penalties that went our way, but whenever we have stupid penalties without the ball being snapped, thats going to hurt us. When we got down in the red zone on our second drive and one of the guys on my o-line moved. We just got to be more disciplined. We will continue to work that. I dont think there was too much crowd noise, but maybe blame it on that.

S Reggie Nelson

(On how important it was for the defense to get off to a quick start) It was very important. Last week it was a little bit of a bad thing the way they moved the ball and ran on us. We went back in and practiced and got better and just stopped the run tonight.

(On the first interception) I read bolt and automatically my corner bit and I have to cover number one and thats what I did. It turned out as a great catch. I didnt think he was going to throw it but he tried it anyway. I just broke on the ball.

(On turnovers tonight) It was all about just coming out, making a point and just coming out and stopping the run. The defensive line did a great job of that and that was when the secondary got command and handled their job.

RB Fred Taylor

(On Maurice Jones-Drew going down early) The smart thing to do right there was to get him out of the game and make sure hes fine. You know there is no need to make it worse in a pre-season game. We definitely need him for the duration of the season. I can handle it though. Its not like I havent done it before, but I would have liked to have had him out there so we could really see how our one-two thing is going to go.

(On coming off of last weeks performance) Yeah we needed it. The defense created a lot of opportunities for us by getting the ball back. Anytime we can get the ball on a short field, we have to try to capitalize. We put up three and then we put up a touchdown. We tried to get the other turnover. We could have done something with it but they stopped us and we turned it over. It was a good look. Well definitely go back and watch the tape, make the corrections, of course, and try to detail some things out, clean it up, and get ready for the Titans.

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