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    • Skins Quotes Post-Game vs. Bucs: Jay Gruden


      Injury update:
      "Ryan Kerrigan has a hand fracture. We’re going to have him see a specialist tomorrow. Perry Riley, lower leg muscle strain. Bashaud Breeland has a hamstring strain. Keenan Robinson had a rib injury; he returned. Trent Williams, hand – finger sprain; he returned. Dashon Goldson had a nose contusion; he came back."

      On what he said to the team at halftime:
      “Well, we just had to challenge them a little bit. The players were up to the challenge and they came out and played. This isn’t about anything I said before the game – the code reds, the halftime adjustments – or any of that. That’s about 46 men coming out of the break and stepping up and making some plays.”

      On the pace of the offense in the second half:
      “This is a player’s game. The players came out and made some plays. The first-half play calls weren’t that much different from the second. It was just about those guys making some plays and stepping up. Kirk [Cousins] making some big time throws and guys making runs after the catch - getting into a rhythm. We hit some runs which helped. Just got into the rhythm of our offense. First half we just had no rhythm and nothing really went in a positive way, both sides of the ball. I think we had 20 yards at the first quarter, they had 200. It was a total domination by Tampa. Hats off to all of our guys for stepping up and winning this thing.”

      On calling the game a “Code Red” last week:
      "The ‘Code Red’ had absolutely nothing to do with anything. It was just something I said after the game. These guys knew the importance of this football game, and they know the importance of every game. I just liked the way we came out – we laid an egg again in the first quarter – I like the fact that nobody blinked. They all came together, they all played together. Nobody stopped believing. Offense rallied, defense got some big stops. That’s what team football’s all about, I’m happy for each and every one of those guys. It has nothing to do with any ‘Code Reds’ or talks at halftime.”

      On CB Bashaud Breeland’s stop:
      “At the end of the day, they score there, the game’s over. That shows what kind of guy he is. I talk about Breeland being an ultimate competitor. If he takes that one play off, or one instance and they go up by 10, the game’s over, most likely. And he hustled, got them down at the five. We got a big stop, held a field goal, we go down and score. I think there’s a lot of plays, and we go and watch this film, I think there’s a lot of effort plays like that. There’s a lot of things we can improve on obviously, but when you see effort plays like that, they stand out and make your team better in the long run.”

      On the pressure on QB Kirk Cousins:
      “You know, he’s a quarterback and there’s going to be pressure on him every week. And how he responds to that is what is going to make him. He’s going to have his ups and downs as a professional quarterback in the National Football League, everyone does. And you have to fight through that, and you have to stay the course, stay patient, go through your reads - your progressions, keep your head up and he’s done that. I’m very happy for Kirk, I’m very happy for the entire offense. The pass protection was outstanding when we had to have it, the receivers made big time catches for him when they had to. It’s not just about Kirk, but I am happy he’s able to do what he did with all the scrutiny around him. He’s got a level head and done a great job today.”

      On the difference in his emotions at the end of the first half and end of the game:
      “I was a little bit upset. It is quite the emotional rollercoaster, to say the least. You’ve got to have faith in your team, and you have to make sure they understand the importance of each play, of each game, and I think they did that. And they came out, and they were under pressure, under scrutiny, obviously a big deficit and they came back and fought. We got the big touchdown, the onside kick, got the momentum back and we were able to keep it and makes some plays. This football, this game of football, each week is an emotional rollercoaster. Each day, you read the paper, you do this, somebody’s talking good, somebody’s talking bad, hopefully this week some good things are said about us. Hopefully we can keep it more than a week in a row.”

      On the onside kick:
      “I think Coach [Bret] Munsey, he’s part of our special teams staff, and [Coach Ben] Kotwica and [Coach Bradford] Banta they did a great job at sniffing it out. They saw alignment there, we worked on it all during practice and we saw the looks a couple times. We kicked off before that, we liked the opportunity to take a shot with it. Starting the third quarter, if we scored that’s when we were going to do it, and it worked out perfectly. And it was a great kick, great kick by [Dustin Hopkins] and big play, big play in the game.”

      On TE Jordan Reed’s success in his first game back:
      "He’s a great route-runner in the zone. When they play man, we like the match-up. He did a good job of winning man-to-man match-ups, whether it’s under routes or slant routes, like he did at the end of the game. We feel like it’s a tough deal for a defensive coordinator and defenses to deal with him. And you can see what type of impact he has on our offense when we are rolling. One, he has to win, which he did many times. Two, he’s got to read zone, and three, we have to have protection and Kirk [Cousins] has to throw it. Jordan had a big game, and a big-time impact on this game today."

      On if this win feels like a relief going into the bye week:
      "There’s a little bit of relief. But we are 3-4, we got a bye week, and we are still going to be right around last place in our division. It’s a huge win for our psyche. We are going to have a great week at practice, and we come back off the bye, we have to be ready for the New England Patriots. It’s going to be another great challenge. So, we can enjoy this for a little while, they deserve some enjoyment around here for some time. Then we have to get back to work. Not much relief in sight.”

      On the special teams’ performance:
      "Tress [Way] did outstanding today, he had some rush, but he still got the ball off and made some big-time punts. The coverage was outstanding, but [Dustin] Hopkins, he’s kicking against the wind out of the end zone. We score with 30 seconds to go in the game, and we’re kicking off against the wind, it’s very easy they can get a return to our 35 or 40 if he squibs it, or whatever. But he kicked the ball in the end zone and put them backed up to the 20. It’s a huge kick. The extra point is big against the wind. He’s been making kicks all year for us. He’s been a great addition to our football team. Special teams overall has done an excellent job.”

      On how he felt after the first half:
      "You’re upset at what has taken place. They were able to do whatever they wanted. They were able to throw the ball up top and score, they were able to run the ball and knock it down our throats. We weren’t able to do anything, we couldn’t run the ball, we couldn’t throw the ball, we couldn’t protect. So, there was not a lot of positives to take out of the first half, other than that one scoring drive that we had. It was 24-7 at the half, and it’s just a matter of teaching our fundamental football and having these guys step up man-on-man, and make some plays. I think they all did that in the second half.”

      On WR Pierre Garçon’s emotions giving the team a boost in the second half:
      "He’s one of those guys who is very emotional. He gets very angry. We have a few of those guys, and so that’s not a position you want to be in on the sideline. If anyone ever wants to aspire to be a head coach, be down 24-0 around a bunch of pro athletes. It’s not fun. So, it’s a matter of keeping it upbeat, keeping them positive and let them know we can get back in it. The touchdown that made it 24-7, cut it to 17. I was upset at the fourth-and-two conversion. We had the false start, or the illegal motion, that was a big play I thought but we bounced back and made some plays. I think everybody in that locker room was a little perturbed at that time.”

      On recording the biggest comeback in franchise history in front of the alumni:
      “It’s huge. I talked to our team last night about the alumni being here, and these guys paved the way for us being here, as athletes and as professional football players for the Washington Redskins. We want to make them proud and show them that all the work that they put into this organization did not go for naught. To come back and battle back to give them something to cheer about on their alumni weekend is an awesome feeling. It was great to shake a lot of those guys’ hands and it’s huge to get a victory in front of them, and like I said, it paves a way for all of us.”

      On continuing to run the ball:
      “I think that around here, if you watch us on tape, I still think we have the threat of the run even though we may not be successful, I still think we can get the play-action off of them, we can still get some of the bootlegs which helped a little bit today. You know, we do have to do better, 18 carries for 31 yards or 51 yards is not good enough. We have to continue to work on the running game and figure out what is slowing us down. Like I said, it’s a combination, but, you know, sometimes if you can’t run it, you’ve got to throw it and that’s what we had to do today.”

      On the value of getting RB Matt Jones back today:
      “No, it has nothing to do with who suited. We run the same routes with Alfred [Morris], and Matt, just a couple differences. Alfred has just been unlucky, he didn’t have good looks, and Matt has had a couple good looks. Like I said man, if we can’t run the ball with any consistency, it’s going to be hard to get either one of them touches, or let alone both, so we’re not down on Alfred, we’re not down on Matt, we’re not down on the running game. We’ve got to keep working. It’s a major part of our offense moving forward.”

      On the three calls on the six-yard line:
      “Yeah, we were going to throw that wonderful bubble-screen to [Jamison] Crowder if we got the look – that would have really ticked a lot of people off. We had man-to-man instead with Jordan Reed on the safety, that’s the side we decided to work. So, we had kind of a double-whammy there. You know what, it was a good play, it was a good route, a great route by Jordan. Not easy to win in that tight space. He won on the first one too, the fade, Kirk [Cousins] just overthrew him, and we came back with a quick slant on him.”
      This article was originally published in forum thread: Skins Quotes Post-Game vs. Bucs: Jay Gruden started by Boone View original post
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