Skip to main content

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

11-02-2003 - Post Game Quotes

Head Coach Jon Gruden

(Opening comments) "I'd just like to say I'm very disappointed in the outcome of the game, and (I'd like to) congratulate New Orleans. Jermaine Phillips, our young safety, fractured his forearm. He'll be out 4-6 weeks. Ryan Nece suffered an ankle sprain. His status will be determined later, but it does look like it has some swelling. Dwayne Rudd took over for him. David Gibson, who we just acquired, took over for Jermaine (Phillips) in the secondary. We obviously started Kenyatta Walker at left tackle, Cornell Green at right tackle. After looking at the film last week, obviously it's a very tough position to play, and Roman Oben will not return as a starter until he can play without the cast that clearly inhibited his play last week."

(On whether the changes in the offensive line affected the offense as a whole) "I don't know if it has any bearing on the game, honestly. We mishandled some balls. We had some turnovers. We missed the short field goal, and when you're playing in the NFL those kinds of things will kill you. But I can't honestly say that the offensive line was the reason for defeat today, although we did have some penalties, some false starts early in the game, which totally are inexcusable."

(On why the Bucs can't follow-up a win with another win) "Well, it's a team we're all getting to know, honestly. We have four new starters on the line, and you have a new fullback, and you have a new third receiver and you have a new second tight end and three or four new guys on defense. It impacts your play on special teams. We felt we had numerous opportunities to sustain drives and make some plays. We were unable to get it done today. I take credit for it."

(On the play of Brad Johnson) "I think a little bit was the score. We were behind. I thought he strapped it back on after the interception and played grandly. We weren't able to achieve any kind of mixture today, running the ball for two-and-a-half, three yards a carry. What can I say? He made some plays that were uncharacteristic of him, but he put our team in numerous positions to score. We have to play better around our quarterback, much better."

(On the turnovers) "Obviously a couple of those turnovers were in the red zone when we were going in for some kind of scoring opportunity. We had careless play in the return game again. We fumbled the ball there. (It's) hard to get any kind of momentum, hard to get the crowd in any kind of excited mode when you're shooting yourself in the foot and turning the football over. It's unfortunate. It's inexcusable, and it's something that is going to prohibit us from being any kind of good football team."

(On the return of John Lynch and Joe Jurevicius) "He (Lynch) is physically, I think, improving. Hopefully, he has a chance to play next week. We'll table that until the trainers give us clearance to move forward but I think he is coming back to strength. (Jurevicius) looked good on the field before the game last week, and he had a little setback on the practice field this week. Although it isn't serious, it's just a matter of when he feels good, and right now he doesn't feel good enough."

CB Ronde Barber

(On the game) "It is what it is. It's a loss at home and you just have to deal with it. Everybody's got to play their part. To tell you the truth, I don't know. I'm tired of talking about excuses with this team."

(On the team's 4-4 record) "Good teams, great teams find a way to win these games. We won some close games last year. Our season is not over yet. It's 4-4 at the halfway point. There's still 8 games left. We have to keep working."

(On playing with injuries) "Learn to love adversity. It's hard to be a tough-nosed dude, but we have to deal with it. There's no way around it. Guys get hurt in this league. Somebody has to step up and play. Somebody will."

LB Derrick Brooks

(On the Bucs' record) "The first thought that came to my mind is that we are 4-4, and we faced a 4-4 football team in the Super Bowl. That was my thought walking into the tunnel. Why can't that be us this year, and that's what I am going to keep my focus on. Right now it's anyone's game."

(On what the Bucs need to do right now) "Remain together as a football team. The losses get tougher and tougher, but you fight through it, and you have to start looking forward to the journey, which will not be easy from here on out. The beautiful thing is next week we don't have to win eight games, just one."

(On the game) "They made some plays down the stretch. We didn't. We didn't execute on all three phases of the game at points in the ball game, and we didn't get it done. These are not excuses. A loss is a loss."

QB Brad Johnson

(On the last few minutes of the game) "We had a good chance. We did a good job in making two crucial drives in the last minutes of the game to tie the game. Then, They did a good job as far as coming back and setting themselves up. It was an unbelievable game. It was real similar to when we played them the first time last year, down 14 in the last few minutes of the game."

(On the offensive line) "They played pretty well. Really, I thought there were about five crucial plays the whole game. Twice we jumped off-sides on third-and-short. We had two fumbles in the red zone area. We had the missed field goal and the interception for a touchdown, and we had the tipped ball for an interception. So, really besides these plays those guys played pretty well up front, I thought. Considering everything that happened, I thought the hit and the sack I took weren't as much them as they were coverage sacks."

(On feeling comfortable on the field today) "I felt very comfortable out there today. We fumbled the ball in the red zone and things like that happen. They also had some guys covered. Really, the only play that I'd like to have back was the interception when I was trying to throw the ball away. I got hit and didn't get the ball out of bounds. It's an unfortunate play. It cost us some points

RB Michael Pittman

(On the game) "I don't think we played to our potential today, and our expectations as a team. Turnovers killed us. I was responsible for one of them. We can't win like that. I believe we are a better team than the New Orleans Saints, but they came out with a good game plan. We came prepared but we didn't put our game plan together."

(On the offense) "We just kept making mistakes and mistakes, and getting in the red zone and having turnovers. We have to try and shake them off and we didn't shake them off. Turnovers are going to kill you. We had a turnover on special teams. You can't win like that."

DE Simeon Rice

(On the game) "It's tough, but we're all in it together. We all have each other's back when we win together, when we lose together. It's all commercial. You know how it goes."

(On the rest of the season) "From here it's a fight uphill each week. Sometimes we fight to win, sometimes we fought and lost. It's going to take everything for us to sustain what we're trying to build because everyone is playing us like champions."

(On the Bucs' injuries) "There are injuries all over the NFL. You look at New England, they have them. Look at the team today, I'm sure they had injuries. They lost guys during the game. I mean, that's just football. You can't look at that. It's not an excuse for us, and I need not explain that."

(On today's loss) "It's surprising, but what can you do about it but continue to play hard, understand each week is going to be tough and just give it your all out?"

DT Warren Sapp

(Thoughts on the game) "We just didn't execute well today. We went through almost the whole first half of the game sleep walking on offense. Gave up two plays on defense and we're down 7-0 and it wasn't going to kill us, we fought our way back into it and then they just made a couple of plays at the end of the game to get us again. You have to take your hat off to them because they really executed down the stretch when they needed to."

(Were turnovers the key) "Not so much that. They didn't score that much off the turnovers. One they came out and got a touchdown and then another. And other than that, they didn't have that much going all day long except at the end of the game where they moved the ball and got into field goal range. But you have to take your hat off to them. They executed at the end of the game when they had to."

(How much credit do you have give their defense) "They were pretty tired, so we just didn't get a chance to go back out onto the field with our offense in a good position to do something. Three seconds isn't enough."

(On every game someone on the defense going down with an injury) "It's bad right now but we have to line up with the 11 guys that we got. We'll be fine."

(On the last drive) "They made plays. That's what this game boils down to is making plays."

Saints Head Coach Jim Haslett

(On the game) "A lot of injuries, guys go down. A lot of guys stepped to the plate and made plays. We could give the game ball to the kicker, the defense, anyone. I thought our defense today was outstanding. Our guys fought their butts of today. Both teams are great football teams."

(On the week of preparation) "We had an outstanding week of practice and it really showed on the practice field. This is a football team that can get better if we get more disciplined in certain situations."

(On the Bucs' turnovers) "This was a hard-hitting, physical football game which created the turnover opportunities."

(On the final drive) "We needed to get the ball to the 32-yard line to give John (Carney) a kick. I know he missed one earlier, but if I had my life riding on a kick, I would want John Carney. We came here to win this game. Our motto this week was play to win - we faked punts, we went for it on fourth-down at the 50-yard line. We were here to win."

Saints CB Ashley Ambrose

(On his interception) The interception alone was just a gift. I mean, it was a gift for me today. Right there. I'm just glad I was able to catch it."

(On the five turnovers) "I think we haven't been able to get a lot of turnovers over the last few weeks. I think when we played Atlanta we got a few turnovers, we got an interception and I think that broke it up for us and got us going in the right direction."

Saints QB Aaron Brooks

(On coming into Raymond James and getting a win) "It was definitely a huge win, a game that was much needed. I thought that everyone came out and played their heart out, and that is what it takes for us to get a victory against the World Champions. Those guys (the Buccaneers) are a very good football team over there. They're the defending World Champions, and my hat goes off to them, but at the same time, we deserve the credit today."

Saints K John Carney

(On if the timeouts before his fourth-quarter field goal bothered him) "I don't really think so. Most of the time it gives you an opportunity to get a better look at your spot and your target."

(On the best part the game-winning kick) "Just seeing it go through and no flags on the ground (was the best part). You prepare for that situation throughout the week. I thank the good Lord. The only reason I've had such a long career is because of my faith in God, and the abilities and patience He's given me."

Saints DE Charles Grant

(On the play of the Saints' front four) "The front four came to play football today. It was outstanding. They double-teamed me and left some guys on the weak-side wide open to make plays.

Saints RB Deuce McAllister

(On the win) "It was a big win for us. Any 'W' for us at this point is big, so we will definitely take it. We didn't play up to par offensively, like we wanted to. Defense and special teams, (my) hat goes off to them, but we'll take the win."

(On the game-winning drive) "Two minutes is too much time. It's too much time for an offense of our caliber. Everybody has to be on the same page, make plays and give the kicker a chance."

(On the confidence he had in K John Carney) "I didn't even look at it, I was tired. He missed one, but Carney isn't going to miss many. He came over and told me he was going to make it, and I said, 'Alright, I'm going to get some water, and he nailed it."

LB Derrick Rodgers

(On the win) "I think it was an all-around effort. I saw a lot of guys flying around giving little hints of what we can be if we come together and make plays. I take my hat off to special teams, the offense and whenever we needed a play somebody stepped up and made a play. I think that's a sign of a team coming together. Sometimes it takes a little time during the season for a team to come together, and I'm hoping that this team is getting to that point where we believe in each other."

Saints DE Willie Whitehead

(On the game) "It's a tremendous win. To come back from last week is a big motivational booster, and we can build on that. It's great going into the bye week where we can rest up, heal up and get ready for Atlanta and heal up the nicks and bruises. I give it up to the whole team. These guys played hard, especially on defense. Guys were worn out and tired and still fought to the end and give God all the glory. It was a great win."

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Latest Headlines