TENNESSEE TITANS VS. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES POSTGAME QUOTES – Sunday, September 30, 2018
TITANS HEAD COACH MIKE VRABEL
(on the decision to change from kicking a field goal to going for it on the final fourth down)
I think that the players like being aggressive, and again, I’ve said this before, making the call is really the easy part. I have to talk to Jon (Robinson) and Amy (Adams Strunk) afterwards and explain it to everybody that the players are the ones that have to go out there and make it happen, and they did. Matt (LaFleur) called a great call that was well executed and I have faith in them. I have faith in their preparation, their practice and being able to execute in the most critical situations.
(on his emotions and the emotions of the team after winning a game like this)
We put a lot into every week. Going back to Miami, we put a lot into that opener, you go down there and spend a bunch of time down there on Sunday and you come up short. I felt the team did a great job of coming back together on Wednesday and really locking in on Houston. And then win a big home game, my first win as a coach and they were happy for me, but we came back on Wednesday and we were able to wipe it clean and go on the road to Jacksonville and win a good game down there against a great team. Wiped it clean, and their preparation has been great so the emotions are high. We’ll enjoy it, the guys are excited, I’m excited, I’m happy for them. But we have to come back in and wipe it clean quickly. I’ll wipe it clean here pretty quick, but these guys make sure we come in and we know what Buffalo is doing. We’ve got to go on the road.
(on the connection between quarterback Marcus Mariota and wide receiver Corey Davis)
Phenomenal. The last thing I told Marcus was, ‘I can’t wait to watch you play today.’ I didn’t know it was going to be five quarters; I’ve got extra football to watch. He threw an interception before halftime, defense held them to three points, and he was great in the second half. He was great when it mattered the most and I think that that’s the key. It’s how you perform on the most critical situations. We know that we’re going to play close games, we’ve said that, and I think they are embracing that and understand that and they know that these games are going to be close and we’re getting used to it. My heart pills come in, I got a prescription, big bottle. I’m just proud of him to execute in the most critical situation in the game.
(on not giving up after potential killer moments during the game)
First of all I would say that Dane (Cruikshank) is one guy on a punt team and I think that it starts with the coaching and the punt and everybody else. Dane’s got two guys on him to start so I don’t think I would say that it was necessarily Dane, but it was a return. It was a bad play by the punt team and we’ll get it fixed. The guys understand that we stay together. Bad things happen—we threw a pick, the defense doesn’t come over to complain. We don’t do something on special teams, we don’t come over and complain, we just run out there and we play defense. Offense does something positive, we try to feed off of it. A lot of times games are long, so I’m proud of them for sticking together and not complaining and arguing and bickering, but just moving on to the next play.
(on if this was a breakout day for Corey Davis)
He’s competitive, he’s strong, he’s really starting to feel comfortable, he’s gaining confidence. We’ve played some good defenses and I give these guys all the credit in the world. Jim (Schwartz) does a great job with that, those guys. It’s a good front. Malcolm Jenkins is an instinctive player and they’re fast at linebackers. When you can throw the football and Marcus (Mariota) can rush for almost 50 yards, that’s a lot of offense for one guy.
(on how Corey Davis was able to free himself for the final touchdown play)
I think that some of these times you get off schedule a little bit and then Corey (Davis) is on the move and Marcus (Mariota) is able to catch him kind of behind that first wave of defense. He got behind them and I think somebody was trailing him and Marcus put it in a good spot. That’s a thing that Corey is really starting to do, whether it be a third down catch or he’s going up and getting it, he’s attacking the football. He’s using his strength, his length, his catch radius, and he’s going to attack the football. He did that against Jacksonville and we saw that again today.
(on if it’s a first for three fourth-down conversions)
I think there’s going to be a lot of firsts for me this year, so I’d hate to say that that’s going to be the only one. I’m sure there’s going to be a lot of firsts. Matt (LaFleur) is not panicking, Matt called a great game today. He knew what he liked. He and Marcus (Mariota) were on the same page. Marcus was able to relay a lot of that information and Taywan (Taylor) ran a great route on fourth-and-15 and Marcus put it in a great spot. Just executing at the most critical times and I think that we can gain a lot of confidence and draw a lot for the next time you need, and we’re going to need it next week.
(on if he talked to wide receiver Darius Jennings at the end of the game)
My response to everybody is pretty much the same. You’ve got to make another play to help the team. Nobody’s trying to miss a tackle, nobody’s trying to let the guy catch the ball, nobody’s trying to drop the ball. I’m very aware of that having played, and having kids that played. When they do that the easiest thing for me is to say you have to give one back for the team, you have to do something. I’m sure he’ll have another chance next week to do something to help the team win.
(on the atmosphere during and after the game)
We’re hopeful that one day everything is two-toned blue in our stadium. That wasn’t the case, we knew that wasn’t going to be the case. We appreciate every Titan fan that came out today to try to cheer us on. It’s not going to be perfect, it’s not. I tell them that every week, but I think we play hard and I think we care about each other. It’s gotten us a decent start to get the season started. We’re going to need our fans. It’s a home field advantage and I hope they will continue to understand we’ll play hard for them and we have some great players out here to watch and support.
(on why he decided to take the field goal unit off the field at the end of the game)
I already addressed this, I’m not going to go back and talk about that. The players made the play. We wanted to win the game. I felt like there were moments in the second half where we played well enough to win the game, and that’s what I was trying to do. We did, we played well in the second half. Defensively we finally figured it out at times— not on that overtime drive, but up until then, and offensively we were doing a lot of great things. I felt like we deserved to win. Trust the players and that’s what we did and they executed.
(on outside linebacker Harold Landry III’s sack on quarterback Carson Wentz)
We’ll take a look at the film. It was a great play. It was a play that obviously had to— they got the ball, a turnover. We’ll keep coaching Harold (Landry III) every week, but that was a critical key play in a critical moment, to be able to get a turnover. We’ll need his pressure as we go through the season.
QUARTERBACK MARCUS MARIOTA
(on his thoughts during the last drive of overtime)
It just came to the point in the game where we had to make a couple of plays. Guys across the board, whether it was Dion (Lewis), Corey (Davis), or the five guys up front, Taywan (Taylor) – countless guys made big plays today and that’s how we were able to win.
(on his feelings on the overtime win against the Eagles)
It’s hard to describe. I don’t think there’s a feeling in the world similar to it. The amount of preparation that you put in week in and week out, to be able to achieve what you want is a really good feeling. I’m happy for these guys.
(on what was going through his mind while the ball was in the air to wide receiver Corey Davis)
Just hang on to it. Nothing more than that. I knew if I gave him a chance, he was going to come down with it and he made a great play.
(on the feeling on the sideline when head coach Mike Vrabel decided to go for the win instead of the tie)
I just appreciate the fact that he has trust in us and the confidence in us as an offense. These last few weeks have kind of been a roller coaster ride for us. To have that confidence instilled to us as players is huge. I’m grateful for it. I’m thankful that he decided to do that, and we just made a play.
(on what allows him to remain calm in high pressure situations)
I don’t know. I’d probably have to credit where I come from. Back home in Hawaii, there’s so many ups and downs. You kind of just go with it. They call it the ‘Aloha Spirit’. I think that’s something that’s been a part of me since I was a kid. That’s probably why in certain situations I handle it that way.
(on the meaning of the Aloha Spirit)
When it comes down to it, it’s just gratefulness, thankfulness and being humble. It’s understanding that it takes much more than yourself to accomplish something. When you have that in your mindset, I think you tend to just kind of go about your business in kind of a calm way.
(on what he did when Corey Davis caught the ball)
I was in the middle. I was right in the middle of it. I just tried to run over as fast as I could, then there was a big group, so there was a whole bunch of people there.
(on his thoughts on offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur play calling)
Again, Matt (LaFleur) does a great job of putting all of our guys in certain situations to be successful. When you have a coach that can do that, can manipulate formations, can do different things that allows you to play fully and with the mindset that he’s putting you in spot that he thinks you can go out there and achieve something. Our young group of receivers are doing a great job. Matt is doing a great job of giving them confidence.
(on what happened with Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins on the field when they were going back and forth)
Nothing, just a first down. Nothing really.
(on whether he enjoys commanding the offense when they’re in fourth-down ball)
Yes. I think going into a situation, you understand that you have to make a play. You understand that it’s going to take more than three downs. Absolutely. I think the fact that you get another crack at it. We were just able to make a couple of plays and continue the drive.
(on how much progress he’s made with his injury)
I’m feeling better. This athletic training staff here has done a great job of finding ways to make it feel better. I’m continuing to work on the strength. It’s been a privilege to be able to work with them because they were able to get me out there today.
(on what goes into his physical therapy)
It just comes down to grip-strength, so just doing normal things like that.
(on whether he feels his injury is an issue at this point in time)
It is what it is.
(on whether he had any reservations going into this game)
I really just kind of went in the mindset of the game. I just go out there and play. I didn’t have any reservations. I just thought I could go out there and play my game.
(on why he decided to throw the game-winning pass to Corey Davis the way he did)
Yes, they were bringing pressure. It was a pressure-look. I knew if he got across that guy, he had some room. I saw that he got a little tangled up a little bit, so that’s why I put a little air on it, so he could adjust to it if he did get tangled up. Again, he made a great play. He went up and got it and held on to it.
(on what the name of the winning play is called)
I don’t even remember to be honest with you.
(on Corey Davis’ overall play today)
I think that this is the expectation. I love that guy. He brings his heart out every single day to work. I think he’s got some incredible talent. We’ve got to find ways to get him the football and allow him to use that talent. But, it’s on him. He has to continue to have that same mindset. I think if he does, he can be very successful.
(on what it means to get a win in overtime with a few seconds on the clock)
I mean, this is what you – you’re like a little kid running around in your backyard counting down the seconds. This is why we play the game. To have an opportunity to win it and have the ball in your hand. There was not a break in the eye with these guys. The five guys up front did a great job. Our skills guy knew that if we got the ball, they could make a couple plays for us. We eventually got down there and scored.
(on how coming off the bench and playing with his injury last week gave him confidence to play this week)
I felt through this entire deal that if I could go out there and play, I’d just give it my all. I always do. My mindset doesn’t change. Coming off the bench last week was a different scenario for me, but at the same time, that’s what we’re called to do. This is why we do our jobs. It is what it is. I’ll continue to fight through it and we’ll be ready for next week.
(on Mike Vrabel’s message to play aggressive)
Really, honestly, it gives us a lot of confidence. He believes in us. He believes that we can go get that first down and win the game. When you have a head coach that believes in you, man, that means the world. I think he’s kind of instilled that since the beginning. I appreciate that he trusts us to go get that done.
(on whether any of the players campaigned to go for the touchdown instead of the field goal)
I honestly was just trying to catch my breath. I was kind of on the sideline. We were talking about the scenario. I was just trying to catch my breath.
(on what he thinks his feelings would be if they had tied with the field goal)
I’m not going to answer that question. You don’t play this game to tie. So again, I appreciate the fact that Coach (Mike) Vrabel wanted to go out there and give us a chance to win it. I’m thankful we were able to do it.
WIDE RECEIVER COREY DAVIS
(on how it felt to come away with the overtime win)
It feels good. It feels really good. Good team win.
(on where he was inside the mob after the overtime touchdown)
In the middle of mob, I don’t even remember. I remember I was trying to get up, and I just got tackled by a bunch of teammates, but it felt good. It was a good team win.
(on his thought process when the ball was in the air being passed to him)
Literally, I was thinking just go get it. (Mike) Vrabel always talks about players just making plays and that’s what it comes down to. So when the ball was in the air, all I was thinking was to go get it.
(on how it felt when he actually got the ball)
It felt great. I know a lot of guys were tired but they were relentless and they kept fighting. They did not stop. I’m extremely proud of those guys and it feels good. It feels really good.
(on what he says about quarterback Marcus Mariota and his game winning drives the last few weeks)
Yeah, Marcus definitely understands the game very well. Great player, great person. He definitely makes my job a lot easier. Going out there on those last few drives, it feels good to have a guy out there that’s poised in those situations and you know, he handled his business.
(on him focusing on connecting with Mariota this week during practice)
Every week, we get after it. You know, me and Marcus always put in extra work to do the things that we need to do to go into the game confident and that should be good.
(on the overtime touchdown call was and what he saw on coverage for the play)
You’ve got to talk to Matt (LeFleur) about the call but I feel like it was great call. Judging by the defense that they were in, I kind of knew that Marcus was going to come to me on that so I knew I had to win and that’s what I did. Marcus threw it up there to make a play.
(on where today’s touchdown play ranks in his career best moments)
I would say number one, for sure. You know, God is good and His timing is always, always right on. I’m proud of this team like I said. They were very relentless and did not stop fighting. It feels really good.
(on switching from the 50-yard FG to putting the offense back on the field)
I’m glad he didn’t (kick the field goal). He had enough confidence in us to go out there and put the game away and not end the game with a tie. Just to know that he trusts us and has that confidence in us means the world.
(on if things are starting to click between him, Marcus Mariota and Matt LaFleur or if the team is continuing to improve)
I feel like it’s always a process and room for improvement. That’s kind of what I expect for myself, to go out there and catch every ball and make plays. So that’s what we did today.
(on the feeling in the receiver room this week with the departure of Rishard Matthews and leadership changes)
With Rishard (Matthews) there or not, I kind of looked at myself as a leader and the coaches did too. Rishard is a great person. I love him but he made his decision and we had to go with the guys that we had and that’s what we did. I’m proud of those guys. A lot of guys say that we’re young but we made it happen today.
(on if Marcus Mariota has a clutch gene after his 11*_th_ _game-winning drive today)_*
I think so. I mean he’s proven it multiple times. I would say he’s definitely clutch.
(on what Marcus Mariota was like during the final drive)
He was poised. He was very poised and very confident. You know that’s the thing with Marcus (Mariota) is that you’ll never see him panic. So he went out there and he was confident and we made it happen.
(on starting 3-1 despite injuries and what having that record feels like in this first quarter of the season)
It feels good to be 3-1 in that first quarter. We’ve got a lot of dogs on this team. We know injuries are going to happen in this game and we’ve got to be saying it’s a next man up attitude. A lot of those guys embrace that so I’m proud of those dudes.
(on beating the Super Bowl champions on home field)
Yeah, I mean, they were Super Bowl champs last year, so it’s a new year.
CENTER BEN JONES
(on his thoughts of decision to go on fourth down in overtime)
We want to win. We are not about tying here at all. We want to win games. When it comes down to it, we are at home and that’s what we did.
(on what discussion was like on decision to go for it on fourth down)
I was just sitting there. That’s what coaches get paid for. They make the decisions and we go out and execute.
(on plugging away from 17-point deficit)
That’s what we do. We are a team. All we can control is the next play. That’s what we did right there. We just try to take advantage of the next big play. Our defense fought their tails off all day and we got the ball at the end and won.
(on if he wants to play in another game like the one today)
I hope not. That’s one you tell your kids about. It was something special. It was my 100th straight game. That’s one I
will never forget in my life.
TIGHT END JONNU SMITH
(on having multiple fourth down conversions on final drive)
You’ve got to have it and that’s what we did. You are so zoned in, you don’t hear anything but what the quarterback is saying on the field in the huddle. These kind of moments define careers. I just want to give credit to every guy out their fighting their butts off.
(on the poise of quarterback Marcus Mariota)
It doesn’t get any cooler than that. Poise, that’s the kind of guy you want in the huddle calling plays. (He is) making sure everybody is ready to make plays. That’s the energy he brings.
(on being 3-1 after first quarter of season despite injuries)
That one is a little blemish but we are not going to dwell on that. We have gotten off to a pretty good start I would say. If we keep building, taking it one week at a time, we will be in great position.
WIDE RECEIVER TAJAE’ SHARP
(on moving down the field for winning touchdown in overtime)
I am so proud of this team. That was real gutsy. Everybody on this team, we never quit on each other. We had confidence in ourselves. The coaching staff had confidence in us to go out there and execute. That’s what we did.
(on if it was fitting for Corey Davis to have game-winning touchdown reception)
Yes it was, yes it was. I am so proud of my guy. He had a great game today along with the rest of the guys in this room. Our coaching staff gave us a call for each of us to do our best for this team today. I am really proud of my guy 84. He had a great breakout day, but it is time for people around the league to recognize that we aren’t nothing to play with.
(on what he thinks about team’s 3-1 start)
It just shows what type of team we have. Everybody on this team is so resilient. We have full confidence in ourselves, full confidence in the coaching staff. No matter who are opponent is, whenever we have the opportunity to play, we have full confidence that we can play with anybody in this league. We’re going to soak in today and after today, we are going to get back to work.
RIGHT TACKLE JACK CONKLIN
(on what he thought about playing his first game of the season in an overtime contest)
It was great, played the Super Bowl-reigning champions and go to overtime. I couldn’t have asked for a better way to come back and finding a way for our team to win. It was huge.
(on what he was feeling after first live game action since last season)
I feel great. Maybe it is the adrenaline rush still. My knee held up great. I didn’t feel like I was favoring it at all. It felt good.
(on what game-winning drive could provide heading into second quarter of season)
I think it creates huge confidence. It shows we can perform in the toughest situations that we can stick together as a team and drive down. It’s a nice way to come back to action.
(on what it was like on the final drive)
In the huddle, there wasn’t really any panic. Everybody was just calm. I think there was feeling that we can make those plays. It was couple of times during the game we didn’t make those plays but we didn’t get down on each other. We stood in there and felt we would go down there and luckily, we did. We performed when we needed to and got the win.
WIDE RECEIVER NICK WILLIAMS
(on the play of Titans wide receiver Corey Davis)
Phenomenal game. We were going to him in the clutch. They knew we were going to him in the clutch. And he stepped up and kept making contested catches, tough catches. Running after the catch. I think he had nine or 10 catches for 150, or more. He played great. When his number was called, he stepped up.
(on the play of quarterback Marcus Mariota)
Cool. Calm. Collected. That’s kind of his M.O. He’s ‘steady Eddie’ out there, and it showed. We executed well. He and CD (Corey Davis) were on the same page. Him and Dion (Lewis). Him and Tay (Taywan Taylor) further connected on a big fourth down, on a comeback on the sidelines. He was spreading the rock around. You know, heck of a job by him
LINEBACKER WILL COMPTON
(on the defense aiding the Titans’ comeback victory)
We had to respond. We were giving up big plays. Weather the big plays, and not allow them to get big plays. They weren’t scoring, and they weren’t getting a lot on us. We had to keep the ball in front of us. Play sound defense, and the defense played well the second half.
(on the Titans winning three consecutive three-point games)
In the majority of the league, the majority of the games are won by less than seven or 10 points. At the end of the day, we’re gutted out there, at the end. We played four quarters of football. We beat very good football teams. But again, we have to keep on doing what we’ve been doing. Come back next week and prepare, and come out on top next week, too. It’s great momentum, and it’s also building great chemistry. Guys are believing and leaning on each other and playing complimentary football. The coach believing in us like that, going for it and not kicking the field goal. Putting the offense back out there, believing in them. It’s a lot of momentum and chemistry for our football team.
OUTSIDE LINEBACKER HAROLD LANDRY III
(on the Titans’ defensive plan today, from Titans’ defensive coordinator Dean Pees)
He does a great job, preparing us the whole week for this team. He’s a great defensive mind. We are lucky to have him and play for him. He just does a great job every single week, and it’s just up to us to go out there and execute.
(on his quarterback sack and caused fumble, which spearheaded the Titans’ comeback)
I knew that coming into this, that they (Eagles) are one of the best offensive lines in the league. But then again, I work out against one of the best offensive lines, all camp. Anticipating the slide and anticipating the different looks that we were going to get, I knew how to take advantage of my chances. So, I knew that if I had a chance to get on the edge, I had to take advantage of it, because I had been coming close a lot of times. In the NFL, you have to finish, because those are big plays and I was able to come through and give our offense a chance to score. We got a big-time win, and it is an exciting time for us.
FREE SAFETY KEVIN BYARD
(on the Titans’ 3-1 record, after the first quarter of the season)
I ain’t going to lie. We kind of expected to be 3-1, and we kind of expected to be on this win streak, because as a team, we know we are a good team. We just had to prove it to the national media, whatever. But we’re here now. Where we’re working and keeping the streak going and try to take the road to the Super Bowl.
(on the Titan’s victory today over the Eagles)
As a defense today, we knew we came into this game, knowing they were going to take a lot of shots and we’d give up a few plays. But we still made more plays than their offense, and that was the main thing. I felt like the defense was confidant coming into the game. We held them off for the most part, in the first half. At the end of the day, it was a hell of a victory for the Titans. This game right here, was a game I feel like we deserve respect now. We deserve respect in Tennessee, and we’ve got to keep it rolling. But we definitely deserve respect. Because we’ve beaten two great teams and that needs taken notice of.
(on the Titans’ final minutes of overtime during the game-winning drive)
It was like a movie. I was on the sidelines like ‘Man, a bunch of fourth downs’. Honestly, once we got that fourth-and-two with Dion (Lewis), I knew the game was over. I said, ‘We’re about to win the game. We’re going to throw a touchdown. We don’t have to worry about overtime, at all’. It was crazy. It was like a movie.
(on the Titans offensive effort for the game-winning drive)
They were Titans, and they just stayed in it. I feel like it was one of those deals where nobody from the entire team flustered. They (Eagles) made a couple of plays, and we made some plays. But everybody stayed even-keel. Because we knew it was going to be a dogfight the whole entire game. But when it got to overtime, nobody wavered. Everybody pretty much stayed calm and fought it until the end. There will be a little celebration tonight, and then we have to get ready for Buffalo.
OUTSIDE LINEBACKER BRIAN ORAKPO
(on the Titans’ team victory today)
We’re a team. A very good team, a very sound team. A team that doesn’t quit. We’ve got a lot of grit, man, and I’m just proud of this team. The way we are able to go out there and compete regardless of the situation. Just got the job done, another week against the (Super Bowl) champs. All respect to the them (Eagles), because they fought their asses off, too. And it came down to the wire and we just made a few more plays at the end. Man, a hell of an effort. This team is just awesome to be a part of, with what we’re putting together, stringing wins together. We’ve just got to keep it up. We’ve put in a lot of work and the coaching staff has put in a lot of work. Great game-planning and great adjusting to adversity throughout the game. The guys are playing lights out, and guys playing hard for one another. You can see it out there. There is a different glow the way we are finishing games.
(on what he was thinking during the Titans’ overtime game-winning drive)
Once we started completing it, and Marcus (Mariota) had that look in his eye, he was in the zone. I’ve seen it too many times, to start losing any faith. And I knew Marcus and company were going to get the job done. It’s all about complimentary football. We didn’t start well in overtime, but we were able to hold them (Eagles) to three. That’s the main goal. To give our offense another chance, and they went out there and sealed the deal for us.
EAGLES HEAD COACH DOUG PEDERSON
(on losing the game and how to move forward)
Well, it comes down to – first of all, you have to, as I said in that locker room, hate this feeling more than you enjoy winning. It comes out of each guy, starting with myself. I look at myself in the mirror and make sure I’m doing everything I can to prepare this football team for each weekend, and effort, obviously, is always there. We have to look at the film quite honestly, and – it’s all fixable. The mistakes we’re making are all fixable. Whether it’s a coverage element being out of position, or a holding when we’re on the perimeter offensively, we can’t do (it). It’s just things that we can correct and practice during the week, and that’s what we have to do.
(on playing on the road)
Exactly. It’s a scenario that I’ve got to look at this week, and because the way our schedule is set up, we’re home, away, home, away. So, we’re going to be on the road just as much as we are playing at home. It’s something that we understand where we are as a football team, and nobody’s going to feel sorry for us with the injuries or – there’s no excuses. We don’t feel sorry for ourselves. We’ve just got to continue to work and keep getting better.
(on the thought process behind running the ball on the last play of the first half)
Get the first down, burn the timeout, and then have maybe eight seconds to start taking shots at the endzone.
(on the frustration with today’s penalties)
Yeah, the penalties are racking up and can’t happen. We’ve got to eliminate those. It’s something we do look at, I’ll look at it here in the next couple of days before we get ready for the next opponent, and try to put a finger on it, and just keep coaching the guys. That’s all we can do – just keep coaching them out of it.
(on quarterback Carson Wentz being pressured by the Titans defense)
We’ll give them credit, that’s a pretty good front. We knew that going in. It’s a good defense, so I give them a lot of credit, number one. Number two, again, we’ll look at the film. We’ll make our corrections. A couple of guys got edged a couple of times. We’ve got to make sure that our backs, there’s cohesiveness with all of that protection. It’s not just one guy or two guys, it could be the offensive line, it could be the quarterback, it could be the coverage. We just have to address it. We pride ourselves on picking up the pressure, picking up the blitz, and we’ll get back to that.
(on the fourth-and-long in overtime that the Titans converted)
It was a situation, again, where we’re just well out of position. Again, credit them. It was a great play, obviously, fourth-and-15. It’s a fixable situation, obviously, and we’ll get it corrected.
_(on whether it will be a ‘growing together’ process with the defensive backfield) _
A little bit, yeah. There’s going to be some communication issues that we’ve got to address. There’s going to be moving parts, moving guys around. It’s very similar to, offensively, with the amount of injuries with the running backs and receiver group. There’s moving people around and moving parts, and again, it’s something that we’ll continue to address, continue to work. We don’t make excuses for it. Next man up plays, and we coach them up and get them ready.
(on how big of an impact it was for the offense to have wide receiver Alshon Jeffery return)
Yeah, he was – exciting to watch him play today. He was aggressive. He attacked the football. Kind of a spark for the offense. It was great to see him back and keep him coming.
EAGLES QUARTERBACK CARSON WENTZ
(on the third-and-three play in overtime)
The covered us. They had us covered, and a little miscommunication there as well. I just tried to throw it away and keep our field goal position. Take the field goal.
(on not being able to pull out the win)
It’s frustrating, obviously, to come up short, especially as an offense when you have chances. We had chances to finish in the endzone at the end of the game. Finish in the endzone in overtime, and we just didn’t execute in the red zone the way we wanted to, and you can look at all sorts of plays from the game – at the end of the day, we just didn’t finish as an offense and as a team either.
(on what is holding the offense back from putting together a complete game)
We’ll have to watch the tape, especially this week. But, I think overall we’re hurting ourselves too much. I think it’s something little here or there, and those little things kind of add up. Whether that’s a penalty, whether it’s miscommunication, missed assignment. Obviously, we’re making physical mistakes as well out there. But at the end of the day, I’m not too worried. It’s a frustrating one, but it’s one we can learn from and bounce back from.
(on if he feels he’s getting hit too much)
It’s part of the game. I’ll watch the film and see, you know, obviously there’s times I hold onto the ball too long. There’s miscommunication, some protection we need to get called right. At the end of the day, we have to watch the film and regroup on that.
(on if Tennessee blitzed more than Philadelphia expected)
I wouldn’t say more than we expected. It seems like we get blitzed quite a bit as an offense, and that’s kind of been their DNA. They like to mix it up quite a bit, and I thought that’s what they did tonight.
(on if the third down play at the end of the first half was a play call or something he checked into)
No, that was a play call.
(on what he says to wide receiver Nelson Agholor after a tough game)
I mean, I’m not too worried about him. He’s a guy that we rely on, that we trust, that I trust. I don’t lose confidence. Guys make mistakes. I miss throws, guys drop balls, o-line miss blocks, you know? It’s part of the game. It’s obviously something that we have to clean up, but I’m not worried about it.
(on head coach Doug Pederson’s message to the team after the game)
We’ve just got to regroup. Obviously, we’re a quarter of the way through, and we’re 2-2. Not quite where we want to be. You know, we’ve got a long way to go yet. We just have to keep staying together, and there’s a lot of things we have to clean up. I think we’re right there. We just have to clean up some things and finish some drives as an offense.
(on the play of wide receiver Alshon Jeffery)
It was great. It was great to have Alshon (Jeffery) back out there. A guy that can make contested catches and make plays for you. He can give the offense a spark, you saw that out there today. We still just came up short, though.
(on identifying the correct protections)
They do a good job. Hats off to them. We study all week, try to watch the film, and then come in here and they mix it up a little bit, do something new. That’s kind of how it goes every week, so hats off to them. They did some things really well. We’ve got to be better.
(on changing schemes when the opponent does something new)
We’ve got to watch the tape. I’m not 100 percent sure on where some of the breakdowns were, or what all happened, so we’ll have to watch the tape.
(on the incompletion on the third down play at the end of the fourth quarter )
I was just frustrated. I wanted to win the game, I didn’t want to settle for a field goal. I didn’t want to settle for overtime. I was just frustrated about coming up short.
(on how big of a problem it is to have so many third-and-long plays)
That’s tough. Those are things that kind of add up, whether its penalties, whether it’s the negative plays, you know? They did some good things to kind of run some of the nakeds, they blitzed right into it. They just had some good play calls on, and we just have to stay ahead of the chains. We put ourselves in those situations and it’s hard to convert in those downs.
(on if the Eagles are playing with a bullseye on their backs)
We fully expect that. At the same time, this is the NFL. Anyone can beat anyone any week. We have to bring it every week, and we can’t just keep making simple mistakes that sometimes, you know, you just want to sweep under the rug. But, those little things kind of creep up and bite you, and I think that’s what happened today.
EAGLES CORNERBACK JALEN MILLS
(on the Titans converting two fourth downs in the game’s final drive)
It’s not really anything they did. It’s us as a defense. We’ve got to make those plays and get off the field and win the game.
(on the frustration of the missed opportunities and penalties in today’s game)
That’s the first thing Coach (Doug) Pederson preaches every week. Before our meeting on Saturday, he said, ‘The number one thing is eliminate the penalties.’
(on if he knew the Titans offense would test him given the absence of safety Rodney McLeod)
You have to kind of figure that. But at the end of the day, it’s good for the next guy up mentality, and whoever is in that spot, you have to go in there and make a play.
(on the pass interference penalty called on him)
I wasn’t a fan of it. Me and him were competing for a spot, I’m trying to get the ball. At the end of the day, the ball was thrown out of bounds, but they called it and there’s nothing I can do about it.
(on why the defense has continued to struggle on the road)
It’s just execution. We were in position to win, and on that fourth down we’re playing the sticks right there. We’re not playing the guy, we’re playing the sticks, so we’ve just got to execute.
EAGLES TIGHT END ZACH ERTZ
(on why the offense hasn’t looked sharp through the first four games)
We’re just not getting it done. We’ve been inconsistent. We’ll have a couple great drives and a couple drives where we’re slow. We scored what, 23 today? That’s under our average of where you want to be. We’ve got to be better. We’re up 17-3, we should win that game, bottom line.
(on the second half adjustments the Titans made to cover him)
I wouldn’t say (they made adjustments). I would say that we were up, so we were kind of trying to run the ball. We were effective running the ball so early in the game, and so we were trying to wear them down. Our red zone offense has got to be better. We can’t settle for field goals, we’ve got to score touchdowns. If we score touchdowns in the first half it’s a completely different ball game. We’ve just got to score touchdowns, it helps having a guy like Alshon (Jeffery) back to make plays consistently down there. I’ve got to be better in the red zone. That’s kind of the big takeaway.
(on if the experience of last season keeps today’s loss from snowballing)
I think the talent we have keeps it from snowballing, I hope. The mindset we have in this locker room keeps it from snowballing, I hope. We’re a bunch of guys who have a very workman-like attitude each day we come into the building. We’re not going to let one win or one loss affect our season, affect our mindset. We’ve got a really big game this coming Sunday, so if we can’t flip the switch and get ready for the Vikings it’s going to be tough for us. But, I like the guys we have on this team, and we’re going to flip the switch and move on to Minnesota.
EAGLES DEFENSIVE LINEMAN BRANDON GRAHAM
(on the Titans’ game-winning drive)
That’s the drive you want. That’s the drive as a defense you want, because it’s all about what we do, and we got them to where we wanted them, and we just didn’t make the play. It was tough for us, because nine times out of ten we make that. But, they got us and we’ve just got to own it. Luckily it wasn’t a playoff game. It’s the fourth game, so we’ve got 12 more. We got to just make sure that we keep going, you know? Don’t give up. We’re 2-2, and 14-2 is still in our grasp, and that’s what we want to do.
(on if the defensive line felt out of gas at the end of the Titans’ game-winning drive)
I don’t think so, because we had a new group in there. I just think that they made the play. It’s tough, man. We just didn’t make enough to win.
EAGLES TACKLE LANE JOHNSON
(on losing in overtime)
It’s a heart-breaking game, losing the way that we did. We kept on battling and I wish we could have punched one in the red zone late, but that is the way it goes. Nobody is going to feel sorry for us. We just have to keep battling and keep pushing forward.
(on the Titans having success bringing pressure throughout the game)
Sometimes we were throwing hot, and sometimes they were trying to disguise stuff and bringing different stuff. That is the way the league is. You try to make sideline adjustments to correct it. It’s tough, especially in this game. It came down to the end. I wish we could have scored there and put the nail in the coffin at the end, but, if if’s and but’s were candy and nuts, we’d all have a Merry Christmas. That’s the way it is.
(on the strip sack by outside linebacker Harold Landry III)
I don’t think I kicked far enough, he got the edge and got the strip sack. It was a big play in the game. I wish I could have it back. It’s tough. It’s the way it is.
(on where the pass protection stands at this point in the season)
We can definitely pick it up. It starts with all of us. We’ll improve. We’ll learn a lot from this game, it’s a tough pill to swallow. We’ll go back to work and get it fixed.
(on the Titans defensive performance today)
They do some stunts and interior stunts. They are primarily a nickel pressure team. They did some of that, they just got home a lot. We’ll have to go back and watch the film and analyze it. It’s tough, because I thought we were going to win the ballgame all the way to the end. Just came up short.
EAGLES RUNNING BACK WENDELL SMALLWOOD
(on the final drive stalling after getting into the redzone in overtime)
I forgot (the details) of the drive honestly, but I know we were pushing with a couple of big runs. We were driving down the field, but I will never question Doug (Pederson)’s playcalling, or what the offense is doing. We didn’t get in, and at the end of the day if we would have gotten in, we’d be sitting here with a win.
(on the Titans disguising blitzes to create pressure on quarterback Carson Wentz)
Hats off to (the Titans). They played good defense today. They had a lot of schemes, and they got home a couple of times, and got us a couple of times. I think we missed some details and some assignments. We can’t do that in this game, especially if we want to finish with a win.
EAGLES WIDE RECEIVER NELSON AGHOLOR
(on the boost of having wide receiver Alshon Jeffery back)
He is such a great player. He makes the catches, as you saw from that touchdown. The coverage rolls toward him, and it’s a great opportunity for us to have a dynamic receiver out there_
(on what changed after the touchdown drive to go up 17-3_
I really don’t know, we’re just going to have to watch the tape. Whether there were missed opportunities or things like that, we just have to all watch the tape and be critical of ourselves. I’m going to watch the tape and be very critical of myself. Whatever opportunities that I had that I may have missed, I have to make them.
(on the frustration of dropping a pass)
Obviously, you work very hard and that is not something that you want to do. You take the frustration outside of it – that’s your job. You get a little upset because you prepare for it, but you have to move on. You have to work harder and you have to get ready to bounce back.
EAGLES WIDE RECEIVER ALSHON JEFFERY
(on how he felt physically returning to game action)
I wasn’t 100 percent, but it is what it is. We didn’t win the game, but it is still something that we can build from.
(on the over-the-shoulder catch that caused him to come out of the game briefly)
It knocked the wind out of me, but I’m all right though. I landed on the shoulder that I had surgery on.
(on how much fun it was being back on the field)
It’s never fun when you lose. When you win you think it’s fun, but at the same time it was fun being in the huddle. But, the result wasn’t good.
(on if there was a moment during the game when he was saying to himself ‘I’m back’)
I think the first catch I think I said that, but other than that, it was just a regular play and just keep on playing.