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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

10-28-2007 - Post Game Quotes

Head Coach Jon Gruden

(Opening statement) "Obviously, I'm very disappointed in that game. I felt we had a number of chances to get it done tonight. It's a credit to Jacksonville; they had a great punt backed up in their end zone late."

(On Jeff Garcia) "He made some plays, I'm sure from his perspective, I'll let him speak for himself, I think he'll agree that maybe there were some plays there that he normally makes that he didn't tonight. That's part of football. He gives our team a chance to win, he competes his brains out and it's just too bad. We had some opportunities there that we let get away from us."

(On if he feels it is the second week in a row the team gave a win away) "We're not giving anything away; that I do know. It makes for good conversation, but nobody gave anything away, we just didn't get it done. I'm the head coach and I'm responsible for it, but our guys are competing their hearts out. A number of guys played some key positions tonight they probably never in their wildest dreams expected to play the roles they did. Some didn't do very well; some did, some didn't. We'll take a good look at that and hopefully get some guys well soon."

(On what displeased him the most about the game) "I thought, obviously, it's a blitz game. I thought we had 10 or 12 plays, big plays, big opportunities to make them. I didn't think we cashed in on some opportunities that we normally do. That's the difference between winning and losing. They're making one-handed catches for touchdowns. Unfortunately for us we were not able to come up with several big plays. Michael Bennett had a chance early in the football game. He was wide open for a big play. There were other opportunities that we just didn't get done tonight. But our guys did compete, we picked up a lot of blitzes and gave our guys a chance and unfortunately it didn't work out."

(On the dropped passes) "Yeah, we did and it was the combination of a good football team we played today and it was, I think, a situation where we had some looks that we normally cash in on and today we didn't do it."

(On Jacksonville QB Quinn Gray not turning the ball over) "That was a winning edge for them. I thought they came out and ran the ball with success early and it really helped them and ran it 13 or 14 times in a row to start the football game. Field position was hard to come by in the first half and we turned it around in the second half, but he did do some good things. He did, I'm sure, exactly what they wanted him to do."

CB Ronde Barber

(On the Jacksonville offense) "It was on us to stop the run and those were going to be our big plays. At times it was good enough, at times it wasn't. Two drives in particular, they just ran it down our throat and that's what we can't do in a situation like this."

(On QB Quinn Gray making plays) "It's still football. He's got enough talent to be in the league. He can throw a fade, I can throw a fade, anybody can throw a fade. Matt just made a great catch."

(On if the defense is failing to make the stops) "That's not it at all. It's situational football. We're not a good enough team to overcome some of the mistakes that we're making. You can't put it on one thing. There's a lot of things that could have gone right in that game that didn't. I refuse to take moral victories out of playing a good team. It was just a tough fought game and they made the plays they did and they beat us."

RB Michael Bennett

(On the big plays made by the offense) "We did have a lot of big plays. We have to capitalize on those plays when we are playing a defense such as Jacksonville. If you look at it, we were very successful in running the ball. Earnest Graham did a tremendous job. The offensive line protected well. We had our chances; just again, we fell short in the end. The biggest thing is that we are 4-4. We're .500 and we have a home game next week. So we have to go back to what we do best, run the ball, get at the receivers. Just get back to what we do. I've only been here for just two weeks, however, I see the poise. We practice together, this is a great team. We just fell short today. Monday is a new day, another week, another home game, and another [conference] opponent. So, hopefully we can bounce back."

(On Jacksonville bringing pressure on Garcia) "They definitely did. They did towards the third quarter once we got the ball moving a little bit. The offensive line did a great job. We just have a great group of young guys that will be great for a long time. They did bring a lot of pressure and I think we are good enough to pick it up and allow Jeff to put the ball down the field. We just missed out on a few."

(On his first touchdown) "It definitely was bittersweet. But, it was just good to get involved with the offense; to be able to go out and gain Coach Gruden's confidence. I think that the more I do, the more we will be able to mix up some things. However, it definitely was bittersweet."

CB Phillip Buchanon

(On WR Matt Jones' touchdown) "I was just playing ball. Matt Jones made a great one hand catch and sometimes that's how it goes."

(On if he was pushed to get position) "I felt a little push, but like I said, I'm just out here playing, sometimes a call is going to go your way, sometimes it's not."

(On if the Jacksonville offense surprised him at all) "Personally, we had that feeling that Jacksonville was going to come out and try to run the ball, and they came out and they made some plays on us early on. We rallied back, we just were not able to finish the game the way we wanted to."

(On the game) "It's a tough, hard game for us because we felt like we had the game, even though Jacksonville is a good team. Things just didn't go our way today and they made some plays and we didn't make enough plays."

WR Joey Galloway

(On missing opportunities) "They were there. We had opportunities today in our stadium to be very successful offensively against one of the best defenses in the league and we didn't convert."

(On what contributed to the loss) "We just didn't make enough plays. We will go back to work. We will correct our mistakes and get better."

(On the loss) "It's tough. You always want to defend your home turf. We knew, defensively, they were tough. We knew they were one of the best defenses in the league and to have the offensive opportunities that we had and didn't capitalize on, it's going to be very tough to sleep on it."

(On Jacksonville's blitzing) "The story is, offensively, we didn't make enough plays. They are a very good defense. They blitz and you have to make them pay when they do, and we didn't do that today."

QB Jeff Garcia

(On how he feels he played) "I gave everything I had to give. It was a game that was physical. It was a game that presented some opportunities at times, but we were just a fraction off and that's the sad thing about this game. No matter how hard you play and no matter what you do someone has to come out on the losing end and unfortunately with the way guys battled today it's disappointing not to be able to find a way to win that football game. To be in the position at the end of the game to put a drive together, to give our kicker a chance to win a football game, not being able to get into field goal range is disappointing. We could beat ourselves up about a lot of things today, but we are only halfway through the season and I am not going to allow myself to hang my head and be disappointed because of the outcome of tonight. I feel like this team really fought hard, overcame turnovers, overcame some penalties at times against a good football team and had a chance to win a football game. That's the sad thing is that we didn't win this game, but I think there are a lot of positive things to look at. We have eight games remaining in this season and I know that this team is going to come back this next week, give everything that they have to give, fight, battle and do whatever it takes to turn the season around at this point in this season."

(On his interception returned for a touchdown) "[Aaron] Glenn is an experienced corner. We got into a position where based upon coverage I checked to an alternate play. He just did a great job of jumping the route. It was a three-step drop, throwing a hitch outside. I turned to throw; he was driving the route and cut in front of Joey [Galloway], makes a great play. Would I like to have that one back? Of course I would. It gave them seven points and created a larger hole for our team to have to find a way to climb out of. He made a great play. That is something that I have been good about during this entire season, not turning the ball over, at least through the air. Tonight, having given them a few, that's disappointing. I can't be discouraged as to how they came about. It's one thing if I am throwing the ball into coverage and I am throwing the ball up for grabs, that wasn't the case tonight. The second interception, I get hit right when I am trying to throw to Joey towards the sideline and it goes directly into the safety's hands. That's just them making a play. The last one, I mean what do you say about that? It's unfortunate, the guy did a great job of knocking the ball out of Ike's [Hilliard] hands I guess and they just made a play. It came at obviously a critical time, but that's just them making plays. I don't feel like I have a problem and it all of a sudden started tonight. They made plays and unfortunately they made good on those situations."

(On if wind was a factor in a couple of the incomplete deep throws) "I don't think so. I just felt like the ball came so good out of my hand. Obviously, you look back at the situation and you wish you would have given them an opportunity to make a play, maybe not put so much on it, not try to make the perfect throw. I think often times you want to make that perfect throw, you want to hit them in stride so they have a chance to get to the end zone. Just a yard off on both of those throws and both of them I think score and that's disappointing. I appreciate the way guys gave effort tonight and I appreciate the way we attacked downfield. To be able to do that and create opportunities was exciting to see, but we need to capitalize on those opportunities when they present themselves."

RB Earnest Graham

(On letting the game slip away) "Well, in the NFL, a team that's 0-6 could probably say that they let games slip away. It's just the way that the NFL games are played. A team that wins the turnover battle wins. It's really on us to not make the mistakes. Whether we let it slip away, we just had a couple of times where we had a chance to take over. We were up by six and when we have the ball in our hands, we should have taken over. We didn't win the game, we let it slip away, but a lot of it had to do with us."

(On having opportunities to make plays) "The last two weeks, a couple of things haven't bounced our way. The play with Ike in end, sometimes it's just bad luck and he makes a play that knocks the ball up. Some things didn't bounce our way, a couple of key third downs, and there were a couple of things that we should have done better. Ultimately, we just need to make those plays. We just need to be able to do that."

WR Ike Hilliard

(On having missed opportunities) "I'm only focusing on one. I could care less right now about the rest of them. I didn't give my team a chance to possibly win a game, at least to give Matt [Bryant] a chance to swing his leg once."

(On Jacksonville's defensive pressure) "I think we knew coming in that they did a good job of disguising their intent. We prepared well. Early, we didn't do some things we would have liked to have gotten done, and we made some adjustments and shored up some things that were necessary for us to figure out. We moved the ball pretty well,we just didn't do enough to win."

LB Cato June

(On the loss) "When you don't go out and play as well as you practice all week, and you don't go out and make the plays you need to make in order to win. We knew it was going to be a dogfight, we didn't play as well in certain situations and we didn't get the job done."

(On containing the Jaguars offense for most of the game) "We knew that they were going to attack us running the ball. We knew that we were going to get a heavy dose of that all game. At times we played well and at times we didn't get the ball back and get our offense another look. We just have to go out there and make sure we're tackling, make sure we're doing the little details and keep flying around and make sure that next week we step our intensity level up, step our game up so we're not falling into a slump."

(On WR Matt Jones' touchdown) "They made some big plays and that's what it's all about. A football game is going to come down to a few big plays and when you have the opportunity to go out and make some plays, and if you don't, those guys are capable of making the plays as well. Today didn't go our way, but we'll try to bounce back and make sure that we're keeping our head up and keep working."


Head Coach Jack Del Rio

(Opening statement) "What an effort. I am very proud of our guys. All the coaches, the players in that locker room, I really felt like you just witnessed a team empty their bucket. It required all of us. Obviously, this is a team that hadn't been beaten here at home. A lot of things, a lot of different factors that made this a difficult game; we came in here and the guys played with tremendous energy and determination. It wasn't the cleanest game I have ever coached, but certainly one of the most satisfying victories in terms of getting a complete effort. We had backups for backups, we had emergency guys that were thrown into spots and kept fighting, kept coming and kept banging away. We were able to scratch and claw a victory. We talked about having to scratch and claw and it didn't matter how we could get it, somehow, someway get win number five. We got that today and I am really proud of these guys. Obviously, a lot of things we need to look at, some good some bad. We will make the corrections and go on to the next one. It is the beginning of a three game road stretch that we are fortunate enough to have this year. We will try to make the most of it, and we got off to a good start tonight."

(On starting the game with 14 consecutive run plays) "I didn't realize it was 14 in a row. I know we wanted to come out and be very deliberate and run at them, and we did that."

(On the defense's performance) "Brian Williams wasn't able to go, so Aaron Glenn steps in and obviously had a huge impact on the game. That is why he is here. We are fortunate enough to have a guy like that that is capable to step in, [a] veteran presence, [a] good football player. They tried to check off and throw one at him; he took it the distance for a big play in the game. Obviously, we did some good things today. The defense rose up. At the end there, that kind of game can get away from you there. You don't ever want to give them the ball back. They were called upon to go out there, to get a stop. [The] defense came up big and got another takeaway and iced the win."

(On the secondary performance) "I thought they played well. They were called on quite a bit. Their quarterback had been red hot, he has been throwing it 70 plus percent, he hadn't turned the ball over; we got three tonight. Some good things going on out there."

CB Aaron Glenn

(On his interception for a touchdown) "They do a lot of quick passing anyway, that's certain information. We knew that they were going to run and hit you, and one thing throughout my career, I'm confident that if I see something, I'm going to take my chance at it. I tried to make the play, that's what corners do, sometimes you make them and sometimes you don't. I'm just fortunate to have been able to make the play at the time."

(On if he was prepared to go in and start) "I go every week prepared to start, that's what you're supposed to do in this league, that's what a professional is supposed to do. One thing that if my number is called, I'll always be ready to play. It's not a fact that I think it's going to be me to come out there and start, I'm always prepared to start, they just called my number to play this week and I was ready."

QB Quinn Gray

(On today's game) "It's a big win, especially when you come on the road with a hostile crowd like here in Tampa. We were playing against a great defense. We prepared all week for the speed of their defense. The game plan was to run the ball and we did that. We did what we needed to and came out with the victory."

(On running the ball 14 or 15 times before attempting a pass) "It was part of [the game plan]. Whatever it takes to win. We're just trying to put points on the board, and if it takes running the ball 15 to 20 times before we throw a pass, so be it. We're just trying to get the win. Right now we're on a three game road trip ahead of us. Number one is down, we came out with a win. We have to go and watch the film, get better from my mistakes, and go on to road game number two."

(On the Tampa defense stacking the box with eight to nine players) "They put nine guys in the box and we still ran the ball on them. The game plan was we knew they were going to stack the box because we have a good running game with Fred [Taylor] and Maurice [Jones-Drew] back there. The offensive line did a great job with the things that were stacked against them as far as the eight guys in the box, sometimes nine. They did a tremendous job opening holes here and there for Fred and Maurice and especially [LaBrandon] Toefield. Toe stepped up this week. When my number was called I tried to do the best I could to put points on the board. We did that towards the end."

RB Maurice Jones-Drew

(On how his injured leg feels) "Well, during the week I just wanted to get it to where it was playable. The trainers did a great job, the coaches did a good job of believing in me when I was telling them I was fine. Today my leg wasn't hurting at all so I felt back to normal. We just started rolling three backs in, three and four backs and we kept our running game going. We knew they were going to bring a lot at us, we were just going to have to run the ball and occasionally play action pass. It was a great team effort."

(On the team's collective thought of seeing this string of road games on the schedule) "We only really saw it as just one on the road, and that was Tampa Bay. Now we have another one. We have the Saints on the road next and that is our next big test. We just have to be able to maintain this momentum."

DT Marcus Stroud

(On the win) "This is a huge win. Coming out the way we did, especially after Monday night, it was great to come out and get on the winning track, especially against a team like Tampa, undefeated at home. They were a hot team, and we were just glad to get back on track."

RB Fred Taylor

(On his take on tonight's game and the adversity he faced) "It was a total team effort tonight, guys were stepping in, guys were cramping up. Aaron Glen, he picked the ball off, he hadn't been getting that many reps throughout the season. He cramped up, Scott Starks had to come in there. All these guys were getting IV's at halftime. Everybody got an opportunity to touch the ball. Quinn [Gray], he controlled the game without hurting anything. The defense played well, they played an outstanding game. The bottom line is we got the win. Pretty ugly but it didn't matter, we got the victory."

(On Quinn Gray's first start and if he thought he would get a lot of carries tonight) "Well, as a back you definitely want that carry, you want as many carries as you can possibly handle. At the same time you don't want them to be suicidal carries. You want to kind of mix it up a little bit. Tampa did a great job. They did a great job containing our run. We thought we would have a bigger day on the ground, but they were flying around with a lot of energy coming from that side of the ball. They are going to win a lot of ball games. As running backs, though, we are always up for the challenge. No matter how many guys are up in the box, eight, nine, we always feel we can run it on anyone."

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