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15 November 2015

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Postgame Quotes - Sunday, November 15, 2015

HEAD COACH LOVIE SMITH
 
(Opening statement)
“It was definitely throwback Sunday – old Buc ball being played out there today. Our guys played hard from start to finish. Defensively, they just kept answering the bell. Cornerbacks the last two weeks, the job that both of them, Jude [Adjei-Barimah] an Sterling [Moore] did to allow us to do some different things, but our defense played hard throughout. Offensively, the turnovers hurt us a little bit, but we kept moving the ball, kept getting in position and of course that last drive – that’s the way you want to finish it off. [It was] just a good team win. [We] keep trying to get to .500 and eventually were going to get there. Injury-wise we had a few things. I think George Johnson went out, but besides that it is just a good feeling in the locker room to get a win that way.”
 
(On his emotions when quarterback Jameis Winston tried to make a play in the end zone but didn’t convert)
“It’s been like that every game. That’s just life in the NFL. Talk about 60 minutes, you can’t relax until [the end] and it's a roller coaster you go through, but you just have to hang in there, No matter what happens you just have to keep playing and eventually things go your way. Great play by Jameis trying to get it in the end zone. Glad we got another opportunity.”
                           
(On what was different about the defense today)
“We believe in what we do. We haven’t been Pro Bowl-ready as quick as everyone would like, but it takes time. The moves we made at the cornerback position, those have helped us a lot. We have guys down still. Guys just continue to play hard and that’s how it’s supposed to happen. You keep doing things the right way, eventually you see some results. We’re not there yet and there are [six team] penalties we need to eliminate, but we’re making progress.”
 
(On the secondary)
“[We’ve] gotten better. That’s an area that has been criticized quite a bit – our safety play and of course the corner play. Right up until Bradley McDougald intercepting the last ball to keep our takeaway streak going, so many good things.”
 
(On when he realized Winston did not fumble the ball at the goal line)
“Right away we saw one of our guys was held. I thought it was a good call. Of course I thought it was a good call.”
 
(On what it’s like for a coach to play in low-scoring tight games)
“You like being in a game as much as anything having an opportunity. I just like seeing guys competing hard. That’s what it’s about. We know there’s going to be a result in the end, but you just want guys, play after play, playing hard, doing what they are supposed to do and normally you have success at the end. Yeah, it was fun watching that type of ball. When you have a guy like [Dallas Defensive Coordinator] Rod Marinelli on the other side of the ball, you know what they will bring to the table too. [There] had to be a winner today. We needed it worse than they did.”
 
(On having lost close games similar to the one they won today)
“Yes, we have lost some and I continue to say we are a good football team that’s done things to not allow us to win games, but we’re getting close. Eventually, if you keep pounding and continue to do what you believe in you should get some results from it. This is one win. We realize that, but to start the second half of our season this was a big game. We have an eight-game season left to go and now all the growing pains – that’s behind us in the first half. Now we need to see improvements and find a way to win games at the end.”
 
(On wide receiver Mike Evans drawing penalties)
“Mike Evans is not a good player, Mike Evans is a great player. From time to time even a great player may not have a great day, but he came back, worked hard on correcting some things last week and he was a force today. It’s not hard to figure out we are going to throw him a lot of balls, but it’s a tough match-up even if you know we are throwing to him. It’s a tough match-up for a [defensive back] to have to guard a big guy like that and he came through for us today.”
 
(On doubling the team’s win total from last season)
“We’ve seen improvement, but you need to have it on record. To double our win total, we have a lot of football left to go and again, just to validate we are making progress as much as anything. We’re not the same old Bucs and we are trending [up]. I’m just anxious to see what we can do the second half of the season starting next week at Philly.”
 
(On if he gained any personal satisfaction with the defense playing well today)
“Personal satisfaction as a head football coach to get a win. That’s about it. As far as [the] defense being criticized, when you don’t play as well as you need to criticism will come. We don’t really hear a lot of it.”
 
(On if he is proud of how the defense played)
“Of course, that goes without saying. That’s what we expected. We have good players that have continued to work on improvements that they need to make and we should see these kind of results.”
 
(On if he saw anything different from his defense during practice this week or if the play was just a culmination of the half of the season)
“We’ve been around each other long enough. My glass is half full always. We have been making progress throughout, but you need to see it at the end. It’s a process. Again, you would like it to be at a certain point right away and you just have to keep playing and eventually you’ll see some results like this. Not only in one win, but sometimes it takes an awful lot to get over that hump and for our players to see that we are a good football team. You need to see that and we’re starting to validate that more.”
 
(On the secondary covering Dallas wide receiver Dez Bryant)
“[They] did a great job. Sterling Moore for the most part was on him. Of course being with the Cowboys he knew quite a bit. He’s competed against him a lot. Sterling Moore, again, when his number was called he has really stepped up to the plate. [He has] allowed us to do what we want to do most of the time instead of having to compensate for our play out there.”
 
(On the defensive front seven play versus running back Darren McFadden)
“Yes, it was good. We had a couple injuries and we’ll continue to talk about getting more pressure and playing harder and things like that. I was pretty pleased with what the front was able to do, not just he D-line, the front seven.”
 
(On how much of a winner quarterback Jameis Winston is)
“I think that goes without saying. I think you can look at someone’s history to see exactly who they are. We continue to talk about him moving into more of a leadership role, but to do that you need to have a drive like that where we’re behind and we need to score and you need to lead us. He’s going to do that for a lot of games in our future. It’s good to see him finish that way today.”
 
(On safety Bradley McDougald game-clinching interception)
“Yeah, on his birthday. We need to have a few more birthdays during the year. I think you know how much we think of Bradley and what type of player he can be. Just like quarterback at the end needs to lead us on a drive – they had the ball and they had time to throw it in the end zone – we needed to make a play. You need your playmakers to step up. That wasn’t a turnover. That was a takeaway. Great interception. That should of course give him a lot of confidence. He’s a good player.”
 
(On if the team can gain anything from winning an ugly game)
“I thought it was pretty the entire time. I’ve never seen an ugly win. For guys and ladies who have been around here for a while, Buc ball that’s what it’s about – grinding it out and finding a way at the end [to win]. The game gets exciting, don’t leave late in the fourth quarter. We’ll take these every day.”
 
(On Winston’s almost-fumble)
“I’m answering a lot of questions on that fumble. What fumble? There was a play that doesn’t go down. There was a penalty called on that play, so why are we talking about that? There were so many good things. You know what we should take about? How about that last run of Jameis Winston to get it in the end zone to win it? That’s what we should be talking about. Great decision by him. Great play call by Dirk [Koetter].”
 
QUARTERBACK JAMEIS WINSTON
 
(On the swirl of emotions he felt after potentially fumbling at the goal line)
“I forget about that already. I’m cherishing this win, cherishing this win.”
 
(On running the ball into the end zone for the winning touchdown)
“The touchdown was magical, man. Had a great fake, a great call, found the way into the end zone. The play before that I have no recollection.”
 
(On whether he ever thought he had cost the team the game throwing two picks)
“Oh no. I’m always confident. You know, never let them see you sweat, body language is always good. Those two picks, man, just got to make throws. You know, not necessarily bad reads at all, just some tipped balls that I’ll fix. I just got to get the ball down and put the ball out on his back shoulder. But all in all, the guys fought, fought hard and that’s all that matters.”
 
(On the importance of the last drive as a team)
“You know, one thing Coach [Mike] Bajakian and I always talk about in the quarterback room is you never know what play is going to determine the outcome of the game. That whole game just shows you never know which drive can determine the outcome of the whole game, because we put together some great drives and end up falling short – me, on some interceptions and some other miscommunications. But, other than that, you got to give it to the guys for fighting hard for four quarters and pulling out this win.”
 
(On how the offense today helped the defense out)
“That’s how we play every time we step on the field is to help our defense out. That’s our mentality, you know we always know the defense is going to give it their all so as offense we got to give our all. You know but at the end of the day, a win is a win, no matter how you get it. I’m looking forward to watching film so that we can fix things, but you got to enjoy this win. How hard we fought, how guys continue to overcome adversity. Last week we were talking about penalties. Had a big penalty after a big play, came back the next play get another big gain by Mike Evans. So the way we overcame adversity in this game shows improvement.”
 
(On if he had watched the replay of his diving attempt into the end zone)
“I don’t really know what you are talking about (laughter).”
 
(On the steady progress he continues to make each game)
“Every week I try my best to get better every single week, just to help the team out. Early in the season I started off with a lot of turnovers. I hurt the team real bad, we were in some situations to win a couple games, with my turnovers, lost us those games. Now we are just trying to get better every week. We are taking everything on a day-to-day basis, trying to improve as team, trying to come closer together as a team, and try to get rolling.”
 
(On if his NFL experience is contributing to the wins)
“Just, you know, my want to. I just want to get better every single week, and I know that we have a great team, and that I have to play well for us to win.”
 
(On problems Mike Evans causes for the other team’s defense)
“I mean he is a problem for every defense. You know, that’s why you can’t really harp on the past. We knew Mike [Evans] was going to come and have an amazing game this week. We knew that Adam Humphries was going to come and have another amazing game this week. We knew the tight ends were going to step up and have a big game. You know, we knew Donteea Dye was going to get his first catch his only catch, then to make some guys miss and get a good first down for us. You know, as we come into the game we know everyone on this team is starting to learn their roles as a team. When we are able to perfect our roles and really do our jobs – I have to fix the turnovers of course, that falls in my job – but as long as everyone is doing to do their job, we are going to be a tough team to beat.”
 
(On what was said in the offensive huddle before the last drive of the game)
“I’m going to tell you something man, every drive after halftime I stepped in the huddle and said, ‘we’re about to score this drive.’ I guarantee you I stepped in the huddle and said ‘we’re about to score this drive.’ And if I wasn’t saying it then Joe Hawley and Logan Mankins were saying ‘we’re going to score this drive.’ You know, so we wanted it and I feel like I’ve just got to see what happened on the film. I feel like we’ve put together a couple drives again, my turnovers didn’t help us, so that’s something that we can fix, that’s something we know we can fix. It’s a great win, you have to celebrate it.”
 
(On thoughts of having Mike Evans, Vincent Jackson, and Austin Jenkins playing healthy together at the same time)
“Man I’ll tell you what, sometimes I do have those dreams. But then I snap back to reality and I realize what God has given me and how hard these players work every single day. The Donteea Dyes, the Adam Humphries, the Cam Brates, and Brandon Myers, how they come in and work day after day to get better. It’s a blessing that we have players like Mike Evans, Vincent Jackson, Austin Seferian-Jenkins. But the thing about football – I might go a little off [topic] – but the thing about football is when you have football players, you win games with football players. When guys want to come out there and work hard and they don’t care about their circumstance, they just come out there wanting to win and do their job, that’s how you win football games. I believe that we’ve played three great games with what we have.”
 
(On Mike Evans performance this week compared to last week’s)
“I think you were giving Mike [Evans] a hard time last week, and I was trying to tell you Mike [Evans] is a beast. You know he is going to come day in and day out and work hard, and keep making plays. You know everyone makes mistakes, but Mike Evans, when he wants to, he’s hard to stop.”
 
(On if he ever thought he would be leading the team in rushing touchdowns)
“I didn’t. That’s one thing that I didn’t think I would, but anything that can get this team to win, anything that I can do on my part to help us out I’m going to do it. It doesn’t matter if it’s throwing a block, doesn’t matter if I have to catch a pass, if it’s going to help this team win and have success, I’m going to do it.”
 
(On if Coach Dirk Koetter called the bootleg call)
“Absolutely. Coach [Dirk] Koetter he is going to call a great game.”
 
(On reading the Cowboys defense at the line of scrimmage)
“They play a lot of man. They switched it out on us, they came out playing some zone [on] early downs, so I had to relay to the offensive line whether it’s man or zone. You know, just to help them out a little bit, just to get everybody on the same page. But everything was just similar.”
 
(On if he smiled when he heard the bootleg call in his headset)
“Man, I’ve been playing with Coach Koetter for nine games. Every play he calls in my helmet I get a smile on my face because I know it’s a chance that this play can pop. That’s how confident I am in him, that’s how confident I am in this team.”
 
(On if his answers about the fumble play would be the same as Lovie Smith’s ‘what fumble?’)
“Yeah, I don’t know what you are talking about.”
 
(On the flat play where he missed the open lane on the right side in the fourth quarter)
“I believe I just have to watch on film. You know, everyone sees wide open guys when they are watching from the stands, but when you are out there playing football you got to play.”
 
(On what this type of win means to him as a young quarterback)
“It means a lot. Any win matters, and every loss helps. You know, because we don’t want to lose. We want to be winners.”
 
(On if stringing together two wins in a row is next week’s focus)
“Absolutely. That’s our main focus right now is getting two win right now in two. Yes sir.”
 
SAFETY BRADLEY MCDOUGALD
 
(On defense finishing off the game)
“Yeah, we definitely did it. That’s one thing Coach Smith was talking about last week, coming this week with a clear mind get on the field and just finish, doing whatever it takes to win.”
 
(On the defense setting up offense for success)
“That’s what we’ve been trying to do all day. Play consistent D, win first and second downs, and then once we get to third down, win that and leave the offense with as [little] field as possible, so they don’t have to drive from the 10 and try to get it all the way down field.”
 
(On the success for the Tampa Bay defensive backs today)
“It feels good, but honestly, our secondary, we have enough guys that know what they’re capable of and know what they can do. We’re not really concerned about outside criticism or things that happen outside of our locker room. We just show up to work each and every week and just try to play better and get consistent.”
 
(On how they kept Dez Bryant out of the end zone)
“Sterling Moore. No I’m just playing, but Sterling Moore did an excellent job on him. We definitely were aware of where he was at all times. Guys just stepped up to the challenge and made plays when it was time to make plays.
 
(On birthday plans)
“I’m going to go home and celebrate with my family. I got a lot of family in town I got to see.”
 
SAFETY CHRIS CONTE
 
(On defense’s performance today)
“We knew they had some struggles on offense with their quarterback out, obviously Romo [Tony Romo] is a big part of their team and offense. They got a great O-Line and a great running game and I think we did a good job stopping those.”
 
(On improvement in secondary play)
“Obviously we made a change at corner and guys are stepping up and playing big. We got a rookie out there playing and we got Sterling Moore. You can’t say enough about him, he’s just playing great.”
 
(On how it feels to walk out with a win)
“As a defense we needed that. The defense has got to feel like we came out and we won this game. Obviously, the offense stepped up big at the end of the game, but to hold a team to six points is something that we haven’t done all year and I think it’s a big confidence booster for us.”
 
(On the secondary stepping up as a unit)
“I think the ability has always been there. Guys just having to believe in the system and catch throws and go out there and make plays. Guys are starting to do that and I think guys are getting more comfortable out there.”
 
(On Sterling Moore’s performance, going one-on-one with Dez Bryant)
“That’s a tough job, he’s their best receiver. He did a great job against Odell Beckham last week, and to come this week and shut down Dez Bryant, I don’t know how many catches or yards [Bryant] had, but he took him out of the game it seemed like. Sterling has been playing at a very high level and he’s been a good player for us.”
 
(On final drive and Bradley McDougald’s interception)
“We knew that the game was on our shoulders and we had to make a play. It was going to come down to us. Unfortunately, we had a penalty that put them a little closer into our end of the field, but no matter where they got the ball we knew it was going to be on us to stop them and keep them out of the end zone. If they don’t score, they don’t win. It was big for us. It was a big play by Bradley to come out and get the interception to win the game. It’s his birthday, and to get a pick like that, I can’t think of anything better than that.”
 
RUNNING BACK DOUG MARTIN
 
(On how it felt to get the win in the end)
“It feels real good. It wasn’t pretty but we got the job done. You know, this is a team that struggled to get over the hump and today we did that and that’s just this team dealing with adversity and guys stepping up and making plays and that’s what we’ll continue to do going forward in this season.”
 
(On going 1-1 in the red zone)
“We’ll take that any day. We emphasize scoring and not getting field goals in the red zone so we’ll take that one [for] one and that’s something we’ll continue practicing and getting better at and continue having success in that area down the line.”
 
(On what changed offensively towards the end and if the team’s intensity picked up at all)
“It’s just will power. You know, the will to win. We held each other accountable, kept driving. It’s that passion for the game, and we ended up on top.”
 
(On the resiliency the team showed today)
“Yeah. We have a lot of fighters and competitors on this team. Those are the types of guys I want to go to war with and play in the game with and guys knowing that they can get over the hump and deal with adversity, those are the types of guys I want on my team so I’m proud of these guys.”
 
(On how it feels to beat the Cowboys)
“It feels awesome. It feels good.”
 
(On what a win like this potentially does for a young team)
“It boosts our confidence. Getting wins like this shows that we can get over the hump and deal with adversity. We had a lot of penalties but no matter what the circumstances, we could find a way to win so, we have a lot of guys who believe that there’s a way to win. That’s what we need.”
 
LINEBACKER LAVONTE DAVID
 
(On the win)
“Guys did a heck of a job playing with maximum effort and just controlling what they can control and doing their job. You have to take your hat off to everybody for a collective effort and the way we put this performance together, it was everybody involved.”
 
(On his opinion if this was second best game for them this year)
“Those guys try to play their best week in and week out, sometimes some games go our way and sometimes some games go their way. Those guys did a great job today.”
 
(On how he felt after the fumble on the goal line)
“When that happened I looked back at the clock and saw we still had three timeouts left so we still probably had a chance. Defensively we get out there and get a quick three and out and still have a chance to win the game but the dice rolled in our favor that time, so it was a blessing.”
 
(On how Jameis Winston did not look like a rookie on the last drive)
“He was composed, taking what the defense was giving him and making plays and that’s what we got him for.  He’s been doing that week in and week out, even with the early interceptions, he kept his composure and brought us back in the game.”
 
DEFENSIVE TACKLE GERALD MCCOY
 
(Regarding the Dallas interception at the 9-yard line)
“At that point, the thing about an NFL (game) is there are three phases to the game and everybody has to do their part. In that situation, the defense has to do their part and we stood up big.”
 
(On the defensive unit holding strong defensively twice in the last seven minutes of the game)
“We just played the type of defense we have to play moving forward if we are going to get it right.”
 
(On how determined the defensive line was going up against Dallas’ offensive line)
“Very determined, it wasn’t really just to prove a point. We just knew we had to do our part upfront. We held them to 42 yards rushing and that’s huge for a team that can run the ball, so we played well today.”
 
(On if he ever expected a 6-3 game in the final minutes)
“It’s the NFL, you never know what can happen but most games come down to the two-minute drive – almost all the games.”
 
(On his feelings as a defensive player to be involved in such a close game at the end)
“I love it. Usually when that happens you kind of get really energized or antsy about it but I was just in a calm state today. Just go play a game and win.”
 
(On if he normally does not have that calmness)
“No, I’m usually really anxious to get out there, but today I kind of just had a peace like just play football and have fun.”
 
(On how he thought the game was going to end)
“I knew we were going to win.”
 
(On how he and Lavonte David said they needed to click better)
“Like I said earlier in the week, the best players have to be on their A-game, if you are going to win and we knew we had to pick it up. Me and him actually sat down to talked one-on-one and we knew we just had to play a lot harder and I think we accomplished that today and it showed with how well the defense played.”
 
(On what Jameis Winston’s two dives for the end zone the last two weeks does for the team)
“I’ve been saying this since camp, he’s just a winner. Winning is in his blood, I mean this game runs through his veins and it’s great to have him on our team. To see a quarterback giving everything he has, it motivates you to just give a little more.”
 
WIDE RECEIVER MIKE EVANS
 
(On if he enjoyed facing the Cowboys’ defense that tried to limit him on offense)
“Absolutely. It was fun. I heard guys on different plays, ‘Come over, roll over top’ and things like that. It didn’t phase me. I just kept playing hard and we got the W.”
 
(On scoring a touchdown in the red zone after struggling recently)
“This was sweet. We needed this one. Dallas played great in the red zone today and other teams have been playing us really well. You know, we got Austin [Seferian-Jenkins] out and V-Jax [Vincent Jackson] out. It’s been tough but we just kept fighting and we got the W.”
 
(On how it felt to get a tough win today)
“It felt good. Winning always feels great. I wish we could’ve had three in a row, but that game is behind us and we are going to try to streak now.”
 
(On the winning touchdown play call by offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter)
“Amazing call. You know, it was a run-pass option. That’s hard to stop on the one-yard line so great call by Dirk. Great call.”
 
(On feeling like the breaks finally went their way today)
“Absolutely, and it feels good to be on the good side of stuff like that.”
 
(On facing Cowboys cornerbacks Morris Claiborne and then Brandon Carr)
“They’re both good corners. They’re really good. Carr is much bigger than I thought he was – he’s a pretty tall corner, long corner. They played pretty good. It was fun just to go out there and battle with those guys.”
 
(On the feeling in the huddle on the final drive)
“We were going to win it. We didn’t want to take a field goal. We wanted to win and we did it. Jameis, myself and everybody else was like, ‘We want to score a touchdown, we want to win,’ and we went and did it.”
 
(On what kept the team resilient down the stretch)
“It was easy [to stay resilient] because our defense was playing so great. We just knew our defense was going to get a stop. You know, we want to score, obviously we want to move the ball and take the pressure off our defense, but they played so great. We had a comfort level and we went out there on the final drive and scored.”
 
(On if he had envisioned the Buccaneers holding Dallas to six points)
“I was hoping, yeah. I hoped it was zero, you always hope it’s zero. But our defense played great. Hats off to those guys.”

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