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Game 12 - Philly. No biggie. Just a season in the balance ...

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    Marine Corps Virginia

    Helmet Skins Notes & Quotes: Skins vs. Cowboys

    Nov. 20, 2011
    FedExField


    Game Notes: Washington Redskins vs. Dallas Cowboys

    • Attendance for the game was 80,122. The game was the Redskins’ 365th consecutive sellout, including preseason, regular season and playoffs. All 145 regular season, postseason and preseason games at FedExField have been sellouts.

    • Linebacker London Fletcher started in his 174th consecutive game, the most among active linebackers and tied with Tampa Bay’s Ronde Barber for the most in the NFL among active non-specialists. Fletcher’s appearance extended his consecutive games played streak to 218.

    • With appearances in their respective games today, Fletcher and Barber both moved into a tie with defensive end Clyde Simmons for the fourth-most consecutive games played by a defensive player since 1970.

    • Fletcher had a game-high 16 tackles and his third quarter sack gave him 34.0 sacks for his career.

    • Quarterback Rex Grossman completed 25-of-37 passes for 289 yards with two touchdowns. Grossman tied his season-high in completions (25) in a game, as he previously completed 25 passes in Week 2 of this season vs. Arizona.

    • Grossman ran for a four-yard touchdown in the second quarter, marking his fourth career rushing touchdown. It was his first rushing touchdown since Nov. 9, 2008, when Grossman rushed for a one-yard touchdown vs. Tennessee as a member of the Chicago Bears.

    • Later in the second quarter, Grossman connected with wide receiver Jabar Gaffney for a 16-yard touchdown. The touchdown pass was the 47th of Grossman’s career. The touchdown reception was the 22nd of Gaffney’s career.

    • The touchdown from Grossman to Gaffney marked the 27th time the two have connected on touchdown plays between the collegiate and professional levels (25 at the University of Florida and twice with the Redskins).

    • Gaffney finished the game with 115 yards on seven receptions. It was his first 100-yard game as a Redskin, fifth overall, and his first since Sept. 26, 2010, when he posted 140 yards vs. Indianapolis as a member of the Denver Broncos.

    • With his 115 receiving yards, Gaffney became the fourth different Redskins’ player this season to post 100-plus receiving yards in a game, which is the first time the team has accomplished this since 1998. Gaffney joins Fred Davis, Leonard Hankerson, and Roy Helu on the list of players who have 100-yard receiving games this season.

    • Wide receiver Donté Stallworth recorded season-highs in receptions (four) and receiving yards (51).

    • Stallworth caught a four-yard touchdown with 14 seconds left in regulation. The touchdown was his first since Oct. 26, 2008, and his first as a member of the Redskins.

    • Punter Sav Rocca had a 63-yard punt in the second quarter, tying his longest punt as a member of the Redskins. He had a 63-yard punt against St. Louis in Week 4.

    • Rocca had two punts downed inside the Cowboys’ 20-yard line, giving him 20 punts downed inside the 20 this season, first in the NFC and second in the NFL.

    • Rookie safety DeJon Gomes received his first NFL start, making him the sixth Redskin rookie to start a game this season (Leonard Hankerson, Roy Helu, Maurice Hurt, Ryan Kerrigan and Niles Paul). Only the Denver Broncos have started more rookies this season (seven).

    • Gomes recorded 13 tackles (seven solo).

    • In the second quarter, rookie linebacker Ryan Kerrigan posted his sixth sack of the season, becoming the first Redskin rookie to record at least half-a-sack in three consecutive games since linebacker Brian Orakpo accomplished the feat in four consecutive games in 2009 (Weeks 3-6).

    • Defensive end Adam Carriker and defensive tackle Chris Neild split a sack of Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo in the second quarter. In doing so, Carriker improved upon his single-season career high for sacks, which now stands at 5.0.

    • Defensive end Stephen Bowen added a sack in the third quarter, adding to his existing single-season career high as he now has 4.5 sacks for the season.

    • The Redskins now have four players with at least 4.5 sacks (Bowen, Carriker, Kerrigan and Orakpo). Entering Sunday’s games, only the Houston Texans had four players with 4.5 sacks.

    • Brandon Banks’ 55-yard punt return in the third quarter was a career long. Banks’ previous long was a 53-yard return at Philadelphia on Oct. 3, 2010. Banks finished a season-high 190 all-purpose yards.

    • Tight end Fred Davis caught six passes, pushing his season total to 49, a single-season career-high.

    • Receiver Anthony Armstrong received the first rushing attempt of his career, rushing for five yards on the Redskins’ first offensive play.

    • Running back Ryan Torain surpassed 1,000 yards for his career on his first carry.

    • Running back Tashard Choice appeared in his first game as a member of the Redskins.

    • Fullback Darrel Young had a career-long 27-yard reception in the fourth quarter.

    • Washington was 1-of-2 on challenges. All three of Washington’s challenges this season have come against Dallas.

    • Head Coach Mike Shanahan is now 41-of-99 all-time when challenging rulings.

    • Two of Graham Gano’s five kickoffs went for touchbacks.


    Executive Vice President/Head Coach Mike Shanahan

    On the fans’ enthusiasm today:
    “I thought our fans were unbelievable today, starting the game all the way through. The way we played offense in the first quarter — they stayed behind us and they did give us some extra jolt. I really appreciated that, especially the way we played first quarter offense.”

    On if he considered punting in overtime instead of going for the 52-yard field goal:
    “The reason I didn’t think about it is [kicker Graham Gano] has been very consistent with his field goals in practice. The distance had nothing to do with it. [It was] not a question of field position… I obviously don’t know how close it was but we’re obviously disappointed it didn’t go through.”

    On how much consideration he gave going for two points instead of the PAT at the end of regulation:
    “Against that defense — not a lot.”

    On the changes he saw offensively in the second half:
    “I was pleased that nobody panicked. I think we had one first down. Things weren’t moving very well… just a player here or a player there was a little bit off. We had a chance on a couple third downs a couple chances there to get it done… I thought everybody kept their poise and kept up the fight [and] got a little momentum going.”

    On wide receiver Dez Bryant’s plays in the second half and overtime:
    “Yeah, I thought [Dallas quarterback] Tony [Romo] was probably a bigger part of that then Dez was. Finding a way to step up in the pocket, slide to the left and make some big plays. They’ve got to be right around 50 percent in the third down area. I thought Tony did a great job taking his time and finding the open receivers. Normally we would want there to be more sacks when the quarterbacks have to move and adjust like they did. ”

    On six losses in a row and how they approach the remaining games:
    “As I told our guys, I was pleased with the effort. I thought we played extremely hard. I thought we kept our poise and I was just disappointed we didn’t get the job done. We’ve gotta go back and say, ‘Hey, everybody’s gotta look at themselves day-by-day and just keep up the work on the little things.’ If you do that then you’ve got a chance to win a football game. That’s what happened here. We had our opportunities and just one play here or there can fix the outcome… I feel very good about the guys we have in the locker room. There’s as much character as I’ve been around on a football team. Even with adversity, there’s guys doing everything they can. Guys are stepping up that haven’t played a lot and giving us some great effort to make some plays today.”

    On tackle Trent Williams’ injury:
    “I don’t have an update but [trainer] Larry [Hess] told me that the MCL didn’t look very good so I’m not sure what that means right now but he did look quite sore.”

    On the decision to re-sign wide receiver Donté Stallworth:
    “Like I said, guys have got to step up. We had some guys go down and I think Donté did a heck of a job. [He was] very physical, snatched a couple balls, made a couple big plays. It was really a credit to him taking advantage of an opportunity.”

    On if he had questioned if Dallas kicker Dan Bailey’s winning field goal was good:
    “I’ll be honest with you, I’m just disappointed they don’t extend another 10-to-15 feet so that there’s no question on if a ball goes through. I’ve been kind of adamant about that for years. Why should there even be a question mark?”

    On punt returner Brandon Banks’ impact on the offense:
    “I thought Brandon did a good job. He gave us some good [field] position… I thought he did a heck of a job of giving us the opportunity to get some good field position.”

    On quarterback Rex Grossman’s play today:
    “I thought he did a good job. Anytime you make a mistake and you’ve got the poise to come back and make some big time throws… I thought he really handled himself well. I’m just disappointed right there at the end that we weren’t able to finish it.”

    On if the players were trying to call a timeout on the Cowboys’ touchdown to tight end Jason Witten:
    “No. Trying to get a time out? No. We did have a missed coverage, though. We had a missed responsibility there that led to the play — big play.”

    On what Stallworth’s play today says about him:
    “He was taking an advantage of an opportunity. Here’s a guy that has been very productive in the NFL. He gets waived, he’s not picked up… We lose a couple guys in one position, he comes back and takes advantage of an opportunity. Had a heck of a practice during the week and made some big time plays today.”

    On wide receiver Anthony Armstrong’s play today:
    “Well, with losing [wide receiver Leonard] Hankerson, he’s our starter next, so he’s going to get some opportunities, and overall I thought he did a good job. I thought we started out slow, didn’t make a couple plays we normally make, but as I stated earlier, I thought we kept our composure. Through most of that first quarter you can see nobody panicked—we said ‘Hey, ya know, we’ve gotta really focus and get our defense off the football field’ and I think we did.”

    On offensive leaders like quarterback Rex Grossman and wide receiver Jabar Gaffney:
    “Well, I think you mentioned two guys that are veteran players who I thought did a heck of a job leading today. They kept their composure. They’ve got a lot of pride in what they do and they handled themselves quite well. You’re always looking for guys to step up. The only way you’re going to get leaders is guys that perform consistently and hopefully that will happen here in the near future.”

    On cornerback Josh Wilson’s injury:
    “I just knew it was bad enough where he couldn’t go back in. You don’t know if it was a pop or a tweak but anytime you’re dealing with those hamstring injuries it’s never good.”

    On the biggest difference offensively between today and the last few games:
    “It’s hard to say for sure but I thought we kept our poise a lot more. We didn’t panic. Guys are more comfortable with each other, knowing the system, knowing the terminology. I think the poise under pressure was probably the biggest difference I could see on the sideline. Some of these younger players getting some experience.”

    On the decision to play offensive lineman Tyler Polumbus:
    “Well, we wanted to keep [center] Will [Montgomery] at the same position. We felt like we hurt ourselves when we shuffled the offensive line. Polumbus has played both tackle and guard position. We kept [guard Erik] Cook backing up, obviously, both positions — both guards and the center. We knew we had [tackle] Sean [Locklear] up and we also had [tackle] Willie [Smith] up because both guys were hobbled during the week and we weren’t really sure how long [right tackle] Jammal [Brown] would be able to go. That’s why we had eight offensive linemen, just because of the injuries we had during the week.”

    On if he was surprised at right tackle Jammal Brown’s ability to play through the whole game:
    “No, because he’s pretty tough. He said he would probably last through the game and he was right. We watched him practice during the week and to have him go out there and play really was a credit to him playing through the pain.”

    On why they couldn’t get the running game going today:
    “It was a combination of both [shuffling the offensive line and the defensive front]. We went into that game and we’ve got a lot of respect for that defense. They’ve done some good things. Usually the only way to get is getting a big run. You’re going to get those three- or four-yarders but we didn’t seem to break off on those big runs. Once you break off a big run against that defense they’re going to hold it in check for most of the day and we weren’t able to do that.”

    On if he’s encouraged by the offense’s longer drives today:
    “Yeah I think anytime you get the ball in the red zone and score as consistently as we did—that’s what you’ve gotta do. I think later we were three-for-three down there in the red zone—when you score touchdowns instead of field goals it’s a different type game. We had an opportunity on that last play, that last drive. On third down and four, we had two guys open on the other side… But you go back and there’s a lot of ifs and buts but we’re very disappointed not to get it done. Like I said, to have that type of fan support being 3-6 was pretty special.”

    QB Rex Grossman

    On how disappointing it was to lose in overtime:
    “You play for those moments. I’m disappointed we didn’t get a victory. I enjoyed myself being in that Redskins-Cowboys rivalry game, fighting with my teammates, the support from the fans. It’s extremely disappointing. We’ve gone on a losing streak, but at the same time I enjoyed myself. It was a very interesting time. Playing in this rivalry, it is the best in the NFL. [I’m] extremely, extremely disappointed we didn’t win, but we fought our [butts] off.”

    On if he thought they were going to win in overtime:
    “Yeah, I did.”

    On what got the offense going after a slow start:
    “Sometimes football can have a lot of momentum to it. I don’t know why. One good play kind of leads itself to another one. We got on a role and we had good field position on those two drives with a punt return and I forget what else. We were able to capitalize.”

    On being in-sync with wide receiver Jabar Gaffney:
    “I don’t know about statistically how good we’ve been, but I’ve always felt good about Jabar and his routes. You could tell pre-game that he was ready for a huge game. He made some amazing catches in some huge situations. I’ve always thought Jabar was an elite receiver since 1999.”

    On if there is a feeling that there is something to build off of:
    “Yeah, I’d rather talk about silver linings on Wednesday or something. It’s just frustrating right now.”

    On if his touchdown run was a designed run:
    “Yeah, it was a quarterback draw.”

    On his touchdown throw to wide receiver Donté Stallworth:
    “It’s kind of a situation where I could throw it to anybody. I liked the leverage that Donte had and I tried to put it in the back of the end zone where only he could get it. He made a great catch on it.”

    On consecutive games with receivers with 100-plus receiving yards:
    “I don’t know how to answer statistics questions. You just go out there and try to go get the best play possible and try to execute with your team and go through your reads. It’s never a general ‘Let’s get the wide receivers to go for 100 yards.’ You don’t ever think like that.”

    On losing offensive lineman Trent Williams:
    “Somebody goes down, somebody has to step up. Somebody is going to have an opportunity. You never know what could happen.”

    On if this loss hurts more than others:
    “It stings more because as a player you understand how much our owner wants to win this game. We understand how much the fans want to win this game. You understand that you are 3-6 coming into this game. This is an opportunity to play against the Dallas Cowboys, our rival. All the things were out there for us to get it done. We tried our [butts] off and I’m proud of every single player and every teammate. Just came up a little short. You could come up with a longer list of reasons that this is a disappointing situation.”

    On if he talked to any ex-Redskins to better understand the rivalry:
    “Not really. I did see Doc Walker on the sidelines in the middle of the game just kind of cheering me on and telling me to get going and all that. For some reason, it did pump me up. I obviously talked to Sonny Jurgensen a little bit before during the week. Some of the situations like that, you really kind of get it. A lot of times, you think you really only have that kind of allegiance in college. You really feel it in these rivalry games.”

    LB London Fletcher

    On Dallas’ play to get into field goal range in overtime:
    “[It was] definitely disappointing. We played some awesome defense today. You know, we gave up the big play to win it and obviously in overtime, but the way we played defense today, [I’m] very proud of the way we played.”

    On the team’s mindset in practice during the week:
    “Any time we play the Cowboys, a division game, everybody around here knows the rivalry and how we feel about each other, but we feel like we played good against that group down from Dallas. Even in the game down there, you know, we felt good about facing them coming into the game. Even [Defensive Coordinator] Coach [Jim] Haslett, he was talking about putting together a tape last night in our meeting to show us making plays against them or plays we need to stop and then after watching our first game against them he said, ‘You know what, the way we played down there in that first game, you just put that tape on,’ and just said, ‘You know, hey man, you see what you can do against them.’ And that’s really how we felt coming into the game.”

    On Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo extending plays:
    “Yeah, it does make things tough, you know, because it’s the ability to make plays on the move, avoid sacks, things like that, buy some time. You know it puts a lot of stress on the coverage on the back end to cover a lot longer than facing some of the other quarterbacks. You know, we knew that coming in that he is a tough sack, but it is still on us to stay tight on our coverage.”

    On his feelings on the team’s struggles in comparison to past years:
    “Very surprising, especially considering you start the season off 3-1, going into a bye, fairly healthy group, feeling great about our chances, then to be on a six-game losing streak. I mean, I’ve never been a part of a losing streak like this, I know a lot of guys have never been a part of this, I know Coach Shanahan hasn’t been a part of this, but the only thing we can do is keep showing up, practicing, and hopefully getting a win next Sunday.”

    On the team’s performance after the bye week:
    “Well, a lot of things have happened since then. Just not making enough plays, playing a lot more young guys, different guys as opposed to how we started the season, but we’re not making excuses by any means on why we have gone on a six-game losing streak. You know, whoever’s number is called is expected to play and play well.”

    On his health status:
    “I mean, I came into the game with a sprained ankle that I suffered last week against the Dolphins. It was a hobble coming into the game, but I was able to go out and play. I know I’ll be hurting this week coming up and hopefully be able to play next Sunday.”

    On if the team’s new additions or player departures have contributed to the consistency of effort despite the team’s losing record:
    “I think it is a combination of both. First and foremost, it starts with [Head] Coach [Mike] Shanahan. The thing that he stressed when he first came in here is having character, having the right people in the locker room. Sometimes you think ‘Oh, this guy is more talented,’ but if he doesn’t fit what we’re trying to do, then he’s not the guy we want in the locker room. Coach Shanahan has done a great job, he and [General Manager] Bruce Allen, of getting the right character people, talented players, but also having the right character because, you know, when the situation is not going your way, you can have some guys kind of go separate ways, but that’s not how this locker room is. That’s not the make-up of this football team. You saw the byproduct of that today with the way we performed, the way we fought. You look at the offense, what they were able to do – driving the football down there to get that tying score, being down 10-0 and then us taking the lead at 14-10 at halftime. That just goes to show the type of character that we have in this locker room and it starts with Coach Shanahan.”

    On building on the performance and finishing strong:
    “Oh, we are absolutely going to continue to fight. Now, we want to fight and win. It’s one thing to fight, but it’s another thing to fight and win. I feel like eventually, because of the character, it is going to happen for us and we are going to make more plays. We are going to make more plays to win these games.”

    On the factors involved in containing the Dallas running game:
    “Just reading your keys, playing with discipline on defense. Nothing special that we did differently this game as opposed to last game. We just played our stuff better. We knew what to expect. It wasn’t a big change from what we faced against them last time. They did a couple plays that [were] different with the toss plays, especially really try to get a little bit more outside on those type of runs, but for the most part we just played [with] good discipline on defense.”

    FB Darrel Young

    On how he felt about Rex Grossman’s performance:
    “Rex studies his butt off during the week and I was happy to see that he threw for three hundred yards he deserves a victory more than anybody.”

    On Donté Stallworth’s performance one week after being waived:
    “That’s the beauty of being a veteran in this league, him being around, him being on the street last week, he knows this offense so there’s a little familiarity with it but the game plan changes every week. But he went out and when his number was called he made plays all day.”

    LT Trent Williams

    On how frustrating it was to move the ball the way you did and still lose the game:
    “Yeah, I mean anytime you lose it’s frustrating, nobody wants to lose I feel like we moved the ball but then again we left a lot of points out there on the field, I mean you can’t win like that.”

    On if he felt that the game was under control or over at any point:
    “It just felt good to back on a roll scoring points. We never thought the game was over. We were up in the last game and lose, so we never thought the game was over. it just felt good to be back to where we were moving the ball”

    WR Donté Stallworth

    On how he approached thegame:
    “I just tried to come in and do whatever I could and just try to get back into the swing of things as far as learning, not necessarily relearning the plays, but when you’re away for a week it might not seem like a lot but the terminology can become somewhat foreign. So I tried to spend extra time watching film and staying in tune with the playbook.”

    On his touchdown:
    “The play before it was a run play and the corner was tucked inside real far, and Rex [Grossman] being the veteran quarterback that he is, he saw that and came to me the next play. Honestly, I didn’t expect him to come to me but you always have to stay ready so the guy did the same thing and Rex put it in the corner and gave me an opportunity to make a play on the ball and we ended up scoring on that.”

    On if he feels good about your performance even though it came in a loss:
    “No, because we didn’t win. That crossing route that I caught over the middle, I’m very hard on myself so I feel like I should have gotten more yards so we wouldn’t have had to kick a field goal. I’m always hard on myself, so regardless of what I did or didn’t do, I didn’t do enough because we lost the game so it doesn’t matter.”

    On how much this offense has struggled to perform like it did today:
    “I think it was a lot better than the last few weeks but we just didn’t do enough to win. You hate to lose on a field goal. You hate to put your kicker out there making a difficult field goal in a difficult situation and offensively we didn’t do enough to win the game.”

    WR Jabar Gaffney

    On the offense performing well in a loss:
    “It’s disappointing. We were in it had our chances and we just didn’t pull it out.”

    On his 100-plus-yard performance:
    “This whole week at practice, I just went to Rex [Grossman] and said ‘I’m [going to] work. If nobody else [works] to get open, I’m [going to] work. If you come to me, I’m [going to] make plays and he came to me today and I was able to make a few catches.”

    RB Tashard Choice

    On the Redskins showing confidence in him to run the ball late in the game:
    “It was a tough situation. I had a chance to win the game late. All these games are always close against the Cowboys. I wish I could have got it in right there. I tried to make a play – tried to get outside and make a play, but I’m glad we got it in the end zone and took it to overtime.”

    On his role with the team:
    “I don’t know this is my first week. I’m going to do whatever they ask me to do. If I had to run the ball all day today I would have. Whatever they have me do – special teams, running the ball – I’m going to do that. This is my first week back for them to [see me play]. They see me in practice but it’s always different in a game.”

    On how it felt to play against his former team:
    “All games are the same. Nothing changed but the team.”

    On appreciating Head Coach Mike Shanahan for giving him an opportunity to play:
    “They’ve got trust in me. I’m going to start making sure I make things happen. When you get a little chance and some opportunities you got to make the best of them. That’s always key.”

    WR Brandon Banks

    On being frustrated about his lack of big returns:
    “Yeah, I have been because I feel like any time I touch the ball I can go the distance. So as time is ticking I’m getting frustrated with it, but I’m just going to stay relaxed and when it comes it comes.”

    On when the offense doesn’t take advantage of his big returns:
    “It’s frustrating, but at the end of the day we all have to work as a team. I mean, obviously I need to get them closer so we can put points on the board.”

    On his 55-yard punt return:
    “[I saw some daylight] but obviously not enough because I didn’t get into the end zone.”

    LB Ryan Kerrigan

    On missing a possible interception:
    “That one was a heartbreaker for me. Nine times out of 10, I bet I make that catch, and then the one time I actually got the chance, I didn’t make it. I should have made the play.”

    On the team looking forward and allowing other young players an opportunity to play:
    “We’re not thinking about next season, and later into this season, we’re thinking about right now. Guys have been stepping up – Perry [Riley] started the past couple of weeks and has played well, and then D.J. [Gomes] got the start today and from what I could tell had a pretty good game. So it’s definitely valuable for us but we want to win now, so we’re not thinking about the future.”

    K Graham Gano

    On missing the field goal in overtime:
    “I just missed it. That’s it. No excuses, just missed it.”

    On missing a field goal in regulation:
    “The first one I missed, I couldn’t hit that any better. I hit it as best as I could. I mean it went right down the middle and kept drifting [towards the] right.”

    On missing his opportunity to win the game:
    “It’s very frustrating. I don’t feel any pressure out there whatsoever. I love those opportunities and to not pull through is very disappointing.”

    On the misses being a mental thing:
    “No not at all. I think I’ve shown that I’m mentally fine. I hit big kicks all the time. I just missed the kick. There is no better way to explain it.”

    On how he felt during the kick:
    “I felt good. The snap and hold was good. Everything was good. I just got to make it.”

    Dallas Cowboys Head Coach Jason Garrett

    On the team’s demeanor heading into overtime:
    “I thought it was good. I really did. Obviously it was a back and forth game. We started off doing some things really well in all three areas. And they battled back and I thought we just kept competing. We talked about it all week long. This is a tremendous challenge for us to come to Washington. We knew in all three areas that there was going to be a challenge for us for 60 minutes and it ended up being longer than 60 minutes. I thought our guys kept battling. We talk about it all the time, the importance of playing through adversity and playing through success and understanding you have to earn it every second throughout a ball game. They did some good things. They kept fighting. I give them a tremendous amount of credit. In the end we did enough to win us this ballgame, this is an important win for us on the road in the division.”

    On if he emphasizes team efforts:
    “Oh, it takes everybody. It takes everybody and every play. They hear this from our staff, really, on a minute-to-minute basis, every single day. I think our team understands that. There are a lot of guys who have stepped up in different roles in this game, and they play for us throughout the game. Big plays, that a lot of those continued drives were stopped down, and obviously to get us in the position to win the game, and Dan Bailey makes a great kick one more time.”

    On whether his players realize it’s not just coaching:
    “There is so much evidence week to week. If guys just watch the tape and understand what goes on throughout the course of the season, so many different people need to step up. We talked about in relation to injuries, guys get hurt before the game, you have to step up and start a game. Or you are in a different role going into a game, certainly, if things happen during a game. And then from a game plan standpoint, if they take a certain part of it away, ‘Hey, the ball’s coming to you,’ or, ‘You have to cover that guy man-to-man.’ Whatever the situation might be, everybody is alive. It takes all 11 on every play.”

    On performances by receiver Dez Bryant and tight end Jason Witten:
    “Well, people know who Jason Witten and Dez Bryant are and they’re going to give them attention. Our job as a head coach is to try and get them some opportunities, even though they’re getting a lot of attention. At the same time, the ball has got to go elsewhere. We have to be able to do things with the other guys and we’ve been able to do that throughout the year. It was a day that everything didn’t come smoothly, we didn’t run the ball as well as we’d like. They pressured us at different times, so we have to understand the kind of game they’re going to play and the kind of scheme that they’re going to play. It’s going to be really good at times, it’s going to be not so good at other times. You have to keep playing and I think Dez and Wit [Witten] certainly understand that. Again, at the end of the ball game they made some big signature plays in this game.”

    On lessons learned between last week’s game when things went smoothly and this week’s game when they did not:
    “Well, that’s the nature of the NFL. You have to play through success. You have to play through adversity, individually and collectively. Sometimes one unit is really going and the other is not. But you have to pick each other up that way throughout your football team. It took everyone today. Our team did a nice job playing with the right demeanor throughout the game and gave us a chance to win at the end.”

    On running back DeMarco Murray:
    “You just have to keep playing. They’re a good run defense. They have been for a long time. They’re committed to stopping the run and they did a nice job with that. DeMarco has been what we’ve seen him be throughout the year. ‘Hey, I’m going to keep doing my job, keep banging away.’ He plays with the right demeanor and kept plugging away. That drive that we had toward the end of the game when we made a couple first downs running it, a real tribute to our guys up front. I thought [offensive line coach] Hudson Houck did a great job throughout the game trying to find some things for us in the run game. ‘Marco just kept banging away. It’s always not going to be easy. You just have to keep playing through some of the adversities and try to figure it out at the end.”

    On quarterback Tony Romo and Redskins Head Coach Mike Shanahan simultaneously calling time outs at the end of the game:
    “I just saw the whole sequence and they gave the Redskins the timeout. It was a good sequence.”

    On Tony Romo’s mobility during the game:
    “I think that one of the best things that Tony does is feel what’s going on around him in the pocket. I think over the course of his career he has developed into a really outstanding pocket passer. He’s done that without losing the ability to see things and use his instincts and feel for the game. I think what separates him from some other guys is that sometimes he gets out of the pocket but he keeps his eyes up. He’s made a number of plays running for first downs this year and through his entire career but he also has that ability to keep his eyes up and see the field, and somehow keep that poise about him to get himself righted. He does it going right, he does it going left. He did a number of times today.”

    On this being the first time since December 2009 that the Cowboys have won three consecutive games:
    “You obviously want to win a lot of games in a row, and in order to make the playoffs you have to do that. It’s just math. You’ve heard me talk about this a lot. You have to put the last one away and get onto the next one. We try to do that every week, this week we’re going to have a shorter week. Typically, we would watch the tape on Monday and put it to bed. We have to put it to bed now because Miami did an outstanding job today. They’re playing well and they’re going to be at our place on Thursday afternoon so we have to get ready for that quickly.”

    On being able to rely on kicker Dan Bailey:
    “We all have a tremendous amount of trust in Dan in our whole operation. There’s just too much evidence. He’s done such a good job with every opportunity we’ve given him this year, both as a field goal kicker and as a kickoff guy. He has a tremendous amount of poise. He’s very consistent in his technique and we’re just going to keep taking chances and hopefully he’ll just continue to do what he’s been doing.”

    On the defense:
    “We’ll have to look at specifics play-by-play but I thought our defense did a really good job just continuing to battle throughout the ball game. Early on in the game they really created a number of different stops. Then as the game wore on, Washington kept plugging away, they made some throws in the passing game but I thought our guys just hung in there, kept battling and that’s what you have to do. They were on the field a long time, if you think about the last part of the fourth quarter then starting overtime. To me, that is a gut check. It’s got to come in from deep down and they made the critical stops when we needed to, to give us the chance offensively to have that last drive that allowed us to kick the field goal.”

    On the punt coverage:
    “I think that’s probably a combination of things and I’m going to reserve judgment until we see tape. But they have a very good kick returner back there. He’s been very good all year long and I think we’ll analyze where the punts went and if we’re in the right coverage lane. Those were big plays in the game though because they were swinging field position at different times but again our defense battled through and I thought our special teams did a nice job as the game wore on, to have some good plays and get the field position right. Ultimately it contributed to us winning this game.”

    On plotting a specific spot to reach for the winning field goal:
    “We have specific yard lines going in each direction. You get into that, ‘OK, he can make it from the 33, it’s a desperation from the 37.’ Maybe going the other way it’s 35 and 40 or whatever the case is. So we try to be onto of those. Once you get inside of the 30-yard line, we feel pretty confident that he’s going to make those kicks. The play that Tony made to Dez, the big play that got us down there, was important but then for us to be able to run it a couple times and get it where we want it, I thought that was big too. Obviously, our operation on the field goal did a nice job and Dan [Bailey] had a nice kick.”

    On tight end Martellus Bennett:
    “Martellus did a really nice job didn’t he? You talk about guys stepping in and taking advantage of an opportunity, well, he did that. We’ve talked a number of times here about Martellus makes a lot of contributions in the run game or as a pass protector, well, today he had a lot of opportunities to catch the football and took advantage of them and made some big plays in this game.”

    On punter Mat McBriar’s tackling technique:
    “That was a big play, wasn’t it? And if you think about where he was in the last few weeks with his injury, if you talk about the gut check, to get yourself right, to be able to make that play, those are significant plays and you talk about the plays that show up on SportsCenter. Sometimes a tackle by a punter doesn’t really show up there but it was a significant play in the ballgame.”

    Dallas Cowboys Owner/General Manager Jerry Jones

    On the game:
    “I want to congratulate the Redskins and [Head Coach Mike] Shanahan. They fought their tails off. I am proud of our guys. We stayed in there… I stayed mad all day. That is what happens when you go in maybe thinking that you have a little more going for you than you possibly should. That is not a criticism. That is me I am talking about there. That is not our coaches. I wouldn’t have thought when we were up seven that they could get 85 yards on us and get back and tie it. [A] three [point lead] is not safe and seven is not safe. You have to go get the points and they did a good job.”

    On quarterback Tony Romo’s performance:
    “I think that Tony was challenged earlier. He made some plays. We also missed some of those long shots that we took that could have made a big difference there. There is one thing about Tony, you will never see him not compete right up until the last play and that is what we got. We got the benefit of it today. Of course, I’ve got so much to say about Dan Bailey. He not only of course kicked the field goal, but certainly was good on his kickoffs today and we needed that because we sure did have a tough time competing with them on special teams as you all noticed.”

    Cowboys QB Tony Romo

    On the touchdown to tight end Jason Witten:
    “He did a great job of seeing me move out the pocket a little bit and adjusting his route. There was only one guy in the area and I had to move around my eyes a little bit. I threw it out there and Witten did the rest. He’s a great player. He did a great job of finding those lanes.”

    On third down conversion to wide receiver Dez Bryant:
    “They gave us a good look. They had the all-up pressure around and kind of bailed out today. They had a little bit of an adjustment to make to prepare for that and do some different things this week. And great job with Dez wrapping in and coming back out on his route – great decision by him. And, great job by the [offensive] line giving me time to deliver the ball.”

    On his health and his ability to extend plays:
    “It’s easier when you’re healthy to be able to do more things, move around and take more hits. It’s good being healthy now – you know it goes with the territory.”

    On this not being the Cowboys’ best game, but being able to get a win against the Redskins:
    “I don’t know how many times, but I feel like this game always comes down to the last possession – every time against these guys. You just know it going in. They know us and we know them, so it just comes down to that. We have to make some plays. But it’s definitely a good sign that our team will just keep staying together and keep grinding and keep trying to figure out a way to get a win in this situation. We have not had a close game like this in a while. It was great to see the execution down the stretch.”

    On Romo calling the last timeout in overtime:
    “They were calling timeout and so I did as well. I think we were out of timeouts. But they [Redskins] helped us out with that. And I guess you get two timeouts in overtime and not three. The clock was running down and I was trying to stop it.”

    On the Redskins’ pass rush:
    “They present a great challenge. They have a great front seven and scheme-wise they do a lot of different stuff. We have to prepare for a lot of different things. [Linebacker Brian] Orakpo and [linebacker Ryan] Kerrigan, those guys are good players. I saw Kerrigan drop 15 yards one time and jump up and hit a ball five feet over his head. So, he’s an athlete and the rest of those guys are too. They’re just hard to go against. As far as schematically what we did, I hope we can do it again in the future.”

    On adjusting in the pocket:
    “I think going into a game like this, you know they are going to present some issues with their abilities to rush the passer. You have to take what they give you. When they allow you to be in there, you stay in there. If stuff breaks down, you have to be able to help out the team.”

    On the touchdown pass to Jason Witten:
    “Once I got out of the pocket and started to roll, there really was only one guy in the vicinity to where Jason’s angle was going. So for a second, I looked back. He kind of took it and stopped his feet because he was moving with me as I was moving left across, so was Jason right behind him. I just kind of stopped him with my eyes going back, he stopped and then came back, and by that point, he was out of position. Jason’s angle was great because he was kind of running away from him. It was perfect.”

    On pointing to the corner prior to touchdown pass to Laurent Robinson:
    “I can’t remember exactly when I pointed. That kind of stuff happens bang, bang, bang; you just roll with it. I would assume it was probably before, but I don’t know.”

    On winning three in a row:
    “It’s important. We obviously needed to get going. Stacking these wins together is what good teams do this time of year. You need to put yourself in position. It was a big win today. It has been a big win these past three games. It is going to keep on getting bigger every game. Miami is playing great football so it is going to be a tough game on Thursday. Right when we get back, we have got to get to work.”

    On his thoughts before the Redskins’ overtime field goal:
    “I am holding now at different points. As I am out there in pregame warm-ups, I know what kicks are easy and which ones are not. Going through the whole process, anything over 45 yards is going to be a tough kick. The wind direction was enough that you had to play it. You just knew in pregame warm-ups these are not like they usually are. Fifty-yarders are tough enough as it is, but I didn’t think the percentages going into that kick were just tough. He’s 90 percent from there, and that was 50-50, I thought, for anybody.”

    On his confidence in Dan Bailey:
    “I feel pretty good with Dan. He has done a great job. He has given us no reason not to think that he’s going to come through. The guy is just solid. I almost feel bad when I am holding for him because I feel like my hold is the reason the ball might drift. He’s that good.”

    Cowboys WR Dez Bryant

    On the Redskins:
    “They have a great team. They had their backs against the wall. We also had our backs against the wall. We had to stay with them and just come out and try and put a good effort against them.”

    Cowboys TE Jason Witten

    On his touchdown:
    “I was a little frustrated. There was a lot of double coverage early in the game and we felt like we couldn’t really get it going. Obviously, with Miles [Austin] being out, we knew that coverage was going to come some. We tried to roll it out, and tried to stay with them, and we communicated that. I wanted to make a play for our team. It felt good for sure.”

    On the importance of the win:
    “Well, this is a big win for our team. I think you look back at it and you’ll know that there are a lot of things you can improve on. It was an emotional game. It’s about will. It speaks volumes about our team to find a way to will that win. It’s a good division opponent, even though they’ve struggled this year. Cowboys vs. Redskins is always a grind of a game and it speaks volumes about our team to have a big win like that.”
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    • Punter Sav Rocca had a 63-yard punt in the second quarter, tying his longest punt as a member of the Redskins. He had a 63-yard punt against St. Louis in Week 4.

    • Rocca had two punts downed inside the Cowboys’ 20-yard line, giving him 20 punts downed inside the 20 this season, first in the NFC and second in the NFL.
    At least an Aussie is doing his job!
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    Why should I get out of bed at 4am just to watch us lose?

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    Wow, really good stuff there. But while Shanahan is going about finding "chemistry" through character in the locker room, he is forgetting to fielding a winning team by emphasizing competition among players with the bar set to average. Every locker room begins to fail when losing become contageous. You won't ever hear Shanahan say that, but I've begun to tune out his rhetoric.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeSr619 View Post
    why dont they ask Shanahan why he called a timeout when the Cowbums had NONE and were running out of time on the play clock?

    why just give them that free time? Romo was standing up to call a timeout and as we all know from the Bills game if you call one that you dont have you get penalized 15 yards!!
    Just another in a series of stupid mistakes we always seem to make against those arseholes.
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