JANUARY 3, 2010
That’s not the outcome we wanted today. The Jets outplayed us in all three phases and they got the victory. Now, we get a chance to regroup and keep going again next Saturday afternoon and that’s about the size of it.
On whether this week’s loss will have any effect on the team’s psyche heading into next week:
Well, I didn’t want to lose the football game and (with) how we lost it, I don’t think that really matters. We didn’t want to lose the football game. We had something to play for tonight and we didn’t get it done. Now, we are where we are. Our goals are ahead of us and let’s go.
On the unique challenges of a rematch in back-to-back weeks:
Well, you don’t get the chance to do this much in the National Football League, so I guess we’re blessed to have this opportunity coming next week.
I don’t know. He had a bruise on his leg or knee, so they held him out the second half.
On whether the injury will affect his practice time:
He’ll be fine. His pride got bruised.
On injuries to the defense, specifically to
Well, we lost Pat (Sims), but it’s just a part of this game. We just have to move forward and go from there.
On offensive struggles:
We didn’t do a good job, I thought, initially in the game. I don’t think we played to the conditions very well and I think that hurt us. In windy conditions like tonight, you have to be able to make some yardage running the football and have an opportunity to get into third down and manageable situations and we didn’t do a very good job of that. We didn’t adjust very well to what the conditions were. We tried to stay on script a little bit too much. I think we needed to work from that, make first downs, move the ball, and adjust to what went on, not continue to stay on script like it was just any afternoon because it wasn’t. It was a different night and that got us off sequence.
On whether the absence of
We got beat today. I’m not going to say anybody is going to make any difference. We got beat.
We came out and got flat out beat in every phase of the game, from top to bottom. You’ve got to tip your hat to the Jets. They came in prepared. They played harder than we did and a lot better than we did. You’ve got to give them credit.
On if the Bengals are the type of team that can bounce back next week:
Absolutely. We play them Saturday at 4:30 p.m., so we have a short week and they have a short week. This team is resilient. We will bounce back and come out and play much better than we did today. The good thing is we gave ourselves an opportunity to still be in the playoffs, even with losing in the 17th week of the season. We get the chance to play at our facility, in front of our fans, and we will put out a better effort and play much better than we did tonight.
On whether the Bengals were looking ahead to next week:
I’m not sure. I definitely don’t think it was one thing. It was a number of things. It was preparation, effort, finishing certain plays, executing certain plays. It was a number of different things that went wrong with us. At the same time, you’ve got to give the Jets credit because they beat us. They beat us up and down the field.
On if the way the season has gone has helped with the resiliency of the team:
I’m not sure exactly what it is about our team. We’ve been through a lot and it’s been a long season. We’re excited about the playoffs. We’ve been thinking about the playoffs since before the season started. The thoughts of going to the playoffs were coming as we were winning games and putting ourselves at the top of our division. It was exciting and we didn’t play with that excitement that we did Week One through 16. The Jets have to come and play us and they’re going to come with a great effort. They’re going to come with a great game plan. They’re going to come with some new looks, the same looks that were effective against us because they’re a good football team that is very well coached. We’ll come out and we’ll be ready to play next week.
On if he feels like the Bengals are stumbling into the playoffs:
We definitely stumbled today, no doubt about that. Execution across the board was not there and not where it needed to be. Marvin (Lewis) has done a good job of making us bounce back from tough losses and this was definitely a tough loss. We’ll bounce back. We need a great week of work and we do have guys that love to come to work and enjoy playing the game and enjoy preparing for games. We’re going to have a great week of preparation and see what happens Saturday.
On what happened offensively:
A number of things went wrong. From missed assignments to bad throws to dropped balls. Across the board there really wasn’t much good, but I’m sure we’re going to go look at this film. It’s going to be tough to swallow. It’s a film we’re going to have to watch over and over as we prepare for this game. If you want to find a positive in it, we’ll look at how wrong we can do things in all the areas we can improve on and all the improvements we can make, we will make. We’ll change, we’ll fix things, and get ready to play on Saturday.
On trying to get the ball to Chad Ochocinco and what he thought of the match-up with Darrelle Revis:
They are two very good players. (Darrelle) Revis is obviously a good player. Chad’s (Ochocinco) obviously been a good player for a long time. Chad’s got his work cut out for him next week, but Revis has his work cut out for him also. Chad’s a good football player. Chad will be playing at home. Chad always plays really well at home, so it will be a great match-up. It will be fun to watch next week.
On getting to play the Jets again next week:
The good thing is we get another chance, another opportunity, to go out and prove ourselves and compete. This team does love to compete and there’s no better way to rectify a loss than to beat that team the next week, so like I said, we’ve got our work cut out for us. It’s an uphill battle. It’s not easy to watch film of yourself getting beat, but all week long, that’s the film we’ll be watching. It will be a long week, but an exciting week, because we’ve got a chance to play at home.
On his thoughts going into the playoffs:
I’m excited. I can’t wait. Like I said before, we’ve got a very resilient team – a hungry team. A team that’s not excited to make the playoffs, a team that’s excited to make a playoff run. We still believe we can do that.
On what this loss will do to the team’s psyche:
It will bring us even closer. We talked about it in the locker room afterwards. There were no excuses made. We got flat out beat up and down the field. They know they beat us, we know they beat us, but we have a group of guys that will keep pulling together. We’ve pulled together all year long through the highs and the lows. This is obviously a low, but we have a chance to make it a high this upcoming Saturday.
On the game:
Someone has to get off the blocks, stay in their gaps and come down and make the tackle. We didn’t do any of that today. It showed. They had almost 300 yards rushing. That’s crazy. It’s a lot of yards and that is embarrassing. We were the number two defense against the rush, but the stats were a little bit different today. I don’t know how to explain it, but they did a good job and we didn’t. Regardless of what we were doing or not doing, they won the game and we didn’t. We have to come back just like everyone else comes back. You lose, you get back up, dust yourself off, and come back to play again.
On how he injured himself:
I didn’t know. There were frozen spots on the field. I was running a route in pre-game, I slipped and banged my knee really hard.
On if he will be available for the playoff game:
I don’t know. I will have an MRI tomorrow.
On if the knee injury affected his play:
Yes, but there are no excuses. Darrelle (Revis) played a great first half. Regardless if I had one leg or not, Darrelle did a great job tonight.
On if the loss affects how they will play the Jets on Saturday:
I think we will be fine. There is a lot of tape for us to study and a lot of things we can fix.
On why they are struggling on offense:
I’m not sure. I don’t think we played well in the passing game or the running game, but we have time. We will get it fixed.
On if they gave the Jets too much confidence for the next game:
No, we just have to line up and play. If we do that we will be fine.
On if it is a positive to play the Jets consecutive weeks:
… Yes. There isn’t much more they can do. There is no trickery they can add to their game plan. We know their offensive and defensive scheme. It just comes down to executing the plays.
On if he will continue his banter with Darrelle Revis this week:
No. I only did that because it was the last game of the season and I wanted to have fun. Next week will be much more serious. There will be no Twitter war, back and forth this week.
On if he is keeping the name Chad Ochocinco:
That was a great win. The fans were awesome. They really were. It was crazy, even in warm-ups. I knew our team was ready to go, and I knew our fans would be ready to go, and man, they proved it. It was outstanding. It really was. Obviously, this is a huge win for us and it was a total team effort. I don’t think I’ve ever seen an offense really control the ball the way ours did in that first quarter into the wind. It’s easy to play defense when you run the ball like that, but I don’t want to slight our defensive effort because it was outstanding. We’re excited and happy with the win and getting to the playoffs, but we’re definitely not satisfied. This is just the start. We’ll see Cincinnati at Cincinnati. We’ve got to take this show on the road and get it done without our fans. It’s going to be a huge challenge. We’ll see. I feel good about our team. I think we’re right there. In these conditions, with that great running game and you play great defense, we’ll be tough to beat. Hopefully we’ll keep this thing rolling. I’ll say this – it was a 4-6 start, (and) we had a mission with our team. We said impossible, then it went to improbable, then it went back to impossible, then it became inevitable.
On the Jets players saluting the fans at the end of the game:
It was great. They were such a huge part all season. There were times where it was probably hard to be a Jets fan, but our fans stuck with us. There was no doubt. They were excited about this opportunity. There was a butt in every seat, and it was awful cold out there. It just shows there are a lot of Jets fans and a lot of people want us to do well. It’s exciting and we just wanted to let our fans know how much we appreciated that. This is their football team as well.
On Jets WR Brad Smith ‘breaking out’:
We started giving him the ball more. I think that’s one way. I think he’s always had that ability. Schotty (Brian Schottenheimer) said “Hey, let’s put him back there,” and came up with a lot of plays for him. He just does a tremendous job. He’s such a weapon back there. The other thing is, he can pass the ball, too. Maybe we’ll find that out, too, one of these days.
On the Jets being a ‘dangerous’ playoff team:
(We’re) very dangerous. Of course, I believed in this football team from day one. I said it and I still believe. You have to be able to run the football this time of year, and you have to be able to play defense, and we can do that better than any team in the League. That gives us a chance in every game, no matter who we play.
On Jets fans expectations and ‘exorcising demons’:
I don’t know if that’s a true statement or not.I know that’s a general statement, but I think true Jet fans are excited about the opportunity we have. This was a heck of a football team. It’s probably been a few years since the Jets had the No. 1 defense in the league, and it’s not even close, and the top rushing attack. I don’t know about the ‘same old Jets’ stuff.
On Jets QB Mark Sanchez:
I thought he did a tremendous job. One pass got away from him a little bit, but he did a tremendous job. He’s smart. He wanted this game. I can tell you that much. He’s very confident. He’s the same guy he’s always been. He’s a competitor and he wanted the big stage, and that’s another reason why we thought we had to have him. There are some quarterbacks in this League that can’t play on this stage, but he’s not one of them. He wants to be out there, he wants the ball in his hands, and he did a great job tonight.
On the one pass that got away by Sanchez:
OK, two passes. I was thinking about the one that almost got picked.
On qualifying for the playoffs:
This wasn’t our goal, to make the playoffs. Our goal was much higher than that. Obviously, we were 4-6 at one time and a lot of people were writing us off, and maybe rightfully so, but I think if you really watched our games and you knew about this team, the resolve of this football team, nobody in our organization thought we were done. I know the outside, they can think it, they can say what they want, but I know one thing: You don’t want to play us. Hopefully, we can keep this thing rolling. It’s unfortunate that we can’t travel with our fans because I thought they were outstanding, but we’re going to have to do it on the road. I think our football team is built to take our show on the road, so we’re going to find out.
On whether the score (37-0) gives the Bengals ‘something to think about’ next week:
I know (Bengals head coach) Marvin (Lewis) pulled his guys, and one of his big tackles wasn’t in the game. I’m sure that will be talked about as probably the reason (we won), but again, I don’t feel that. Our team was ready to play no matter who was at quarterback, no matter who was playing. We weren’t going to be denied tonight. There is no doubt.
On being in the playoffs:
It’s a special feeling. A few weeks ago, everyone had us counted out. This is huge. We knew who to believe in and that was us. We owe it to everybody in our organization (and) the fans for showing up tonight. It was a special atmosphere, especially for the veterans. They deserve it. They’ve been behind me all year. That was pretty special, even through some tough games. We’ll celebrate a little bit tonight, but be smart. (Cincinnati) is a great team that we have to play again, so we need to be ready for a dogfight at their place.
On the execution of the game’s opening drive:
We had an early completion, stayed ahead of the sticks, and Brad [Smith] busted a huge run, and Thomas (Jones) punched it in. That’s been our game. Once we get down near the goal line, (it has been) getting the ball to Jones and letting him run. It’s huge for us to start off strong and to set the tempo. We’re going to need something similar to that next week to play well on their field.
On what he liked most about his performance tonight:
… I think similar to the Indy game, with the exception of one throw late to Braylon (Edwards), it was making good decisions and being smart with the football. If we eliminate turnovers, we really have a chance in these games. That’s really been the lesson these past few weeks. Now, if you lose, then you’re out. This is a do-or-die situation. We just need to take care of the football and play smart.
On the significance of the final game at the Meadowlands being a Jets win:
It was big (for us). It was big for Coach Ryan. It was big for our organization just to eliminate that stigma. It’s going to take years to do that. It’s going to take more victories and consistent winning, consistent play at the quarterback, but I had no idea of the kind of history. The fans really seemed to expect a bit of a letdown and that’s been pretty evident. That’s been brought to my attention, but it’s something we didn’t really try to focus on. We’re just trying to be us. To be the 2009 Jets, the 2010 Jets, and play smart and win the last game at the Meadowlands for the fans that were here tonight, for all these guys that have been playing for a long time. To see Dave Szott, or guys like Curtis Martin, Wayne Chrebet, all the guys who played here to give them a piece of this victory.
This is a big victory for us, to make the playoffs and to close out our stadium at the Meadowlands and getting ready to enter a new stadium next year. That will be big for this organization and a big turning point for us. It was important to be back and win this game.
On if he drenched Coach Ryan with the bucket of Gatorade:
Yes, I helped out a little bit.
On if the win feels good:
It feels good. I guess since an early age, you hear that big players make big plays in big games and tonight, making plays was being smart with the football. It wasn’t necessarily throwing it 60 yards down the field; it was hitting the flat route to Dustin [Keller] to convert on third down. Hitting a couple of swing routes and screen routes and underneath plays and moving the chains and letting our running backs run and letting the offensive line do their jobs. Sometimes, that’s the way you have to play at quarterback. There will be games where we need to air it out and throw it, but this is the type of stage I love to play on. Coach Ryan is right; this is where you have to thrive as a quarterback and feed off other guys’ energy and also help guys play better and to the best of their ability.
On the team winning the game for Coach Ryan:
For Ryan, for the organization, for themselves. This is an all-out team victory. It was special. Thomas [Jones] sat me down early in the week and talked about what it’s like to play in a playoff game. He said there’s nothing like it in the world. He said when you’re at home, it’s hard. When you’re sitting at home with your girlfriend or with your family or with somebody and watching other guys play, he said it’s the worst feeling. He said you never want to feel that. He told me it’s [my] first year, [I] have a chance to make it [my] first year, it’s unheard of as a rookie quarterback. It’s win and we’re in, and we’ll figure out the rest from there.
On his confidence after winning the past two weeks:
… I feel good. There are still some mistakes that I made (and) things I need to clean up. The biggest thing is taking care of the football and helping us move the chains and managing the game. I think I did a good job of that the last two weeks, and that’s been huge with the communication of Coach Schottenheimer and Coach Cavanaugh. Talking through situations, really “impressing” upon me how important the value of the football is.
On Thomas Jones being a leader in the locker room:
Jones is one of those guys who I didn’t know much about coming in. I knew he’s a tough running back, I knew he’s a tough guy. But I didn’t know what to expect and he brought me under his wing right away. He talked me through some tough situations. We got out to a great start, and then we hit a lull there mid-season, and he’s never talked to me more, he’s never been more encouraging, and he is always supportive and positive. For a rookie quarterback, that was important. But for other guys, he really is a lot of our spirit on offense and he knows how to get guys excited. He’s been in all these situations before. He knows what it’s like to play in the playoffs. To hear his input all week long and encouraging us and telling us how important this game was. He’s a special player. He obviously can play well, but it means a lot to have him in the locker room and hear his voice encouraging us.
On if the team executed the game plan:
Yeah. The offensive line did a great job, like they did all year. To end the season number one in the League in rushing is big. It’s a tribute to them and Tony Richardson. They’ve been consistent every week and to our offensive coaches for sticking with the run. I think we played really well tonight. We put some points on the board (and) the defense played really well. Hopefully, we can build off of this win for next week.
On finishing the season strong and making the playoffs:
It feels good. It’s a tribute to Coach Ryan. He never gave up on us in the ups and downs of the season. He stuck with us, he kept us together. He made sure that we worked hard every week and knew that we had a chance and now we’re here. A lot of people wrote us off early and we kept fighting and sticking together. These are the kinds of things that happen when you stick together after 16 games.
On winning the final game at The Meadowlands:
It feels great. I played here a lot. I played here when I was in Arizona and Chicago. There is a lot of history in this stadium and for us to go out the way we did, especially at the end doing a victory lap (with) all of the fans there. That is why you do it. You see the fans out there and they’re happy. They come and tailgate and stay in the cold and cheer you on. Then you win for them and they get to celebrate. It makes it special for them and us at the same time.
On shutting down Chad Ochocinco:
It’s just me doing my job. We talked back and forth during the week on Twitter a bit, but I cut it off by Wednesday so I can focus on my job and my preparation. It’s nothing personal between me and Chad, it’s competition. Me and Chad are good friends. It just wasn’t his day.
On what he needed to do to shut down Chad Ochocinco:
Just be me. You guys know I study receivers a lot, so my preparation just took over and I just tried to make plays. I really couldn’t today with the weather, but I managed to just hold him to no catches.
On Chad Ochocinco changing his name back to Johnson:
I might Tweet him during the week and see what it’s all about.
On Chad Ochocinco tweaking his knee during warmups:
Here we go with all of this. He played. There’s no question about it. Their whole offense played. Their starters played and we competed against those guys. That’s a playoff team and we’ll see them this week coming up.
The stats sound easy, but it’s really not that easy. Our goal is to get turnovers and get off the field on third downs. That’s what we preached this week We wanted to put some pressure on Carson, and we did that.
On Chad Ochocinco talking this week:
I don’t know. I don’t really care. I’m just going to focus on what I need to do individually and prepare to play him again. We’ll see this week.
On the win:
It was a blessing, I’m proud of all of these guys in the locker room for the way they’ve played, the way we fought and the way we came out with intensity today.
On clinching a spot in the playoffs:
There have been many times where we didn’t come through or we didn’t play to the best of our ability, but today we were able to come through. We were able to play at a very high level. Rex (Ryan) was able to get us to have the right mindset to come out here and play the type of game we wanted to play.
On if this seemed possible after the Atlanta loss:
After the Atlanta game, this locker room, we felt like we didn’t have a chance. We didn’t play our best football that day. Then to still have a chance after that, it gave us hope. It kind of inspired us to step our game up another level. We realized that we weren’t playing our best and needed to step it up a bit.
On if his game is peaking at the right time:
I just try to take advantage of the opportunities given to me. I try to help this team. It’s all about the team. You can ask any guy in this locker room and they’ll sacrifice anything to help this team win. That’s what’s beautiful about (this team).
On why teams will want to play the Jets defense:
It’s multiple. It’s not one thing you can do, we are able to adjust on the fly. We have the personnel and the scheme that matches up. Seventy-two yards today is great. That is unheard of and you don’t see that a lot. We (have) the ability to really put pressure on the quarterback. Whenever you have Darrelle Revis on the side, he can do a lot of things because he can erase the receiver.
On being able to go after the quarterback:
You have to. The quarterback is the head and if you can rattle the head, the body will fall. It is going to be important to us to make sure we get pressure when the tide swings. We’re going to be going to Cincinnati, they’re going to have the crowd, they’re going to have the emotions. It’s going to be electric. It’s really going to have to be on the veterans here that have been in that situation to calm the young guys down and weather the storm and get off to a fast start.
On the entire team putting it together:
It was great to put it all together and show what this team can be capable of. We just played to each other’s strengths. We ran the football and I think it opened everything else up. We were able to play stifling defense. it’s important. Next week is a game that could be in the elements. We don’t know what to expect. We have to be able to prepare for that and this defense is an all-weather defense, hot, cold, rain, snow, it doesn’t matter. The running game is as well. We just have to make the plays to win. It shows when we don’t beat ourselves and don’t turn the football over and have blown coverages, mistakes, we can be a dangerous team.