Bengals-Ravens Postgame Quotes

Posted Jan 2, 2011


JANUARY 2, 2011


Initial comments:
“I stand here not victorious for a couple things. We knew going into this game you’ve got to take care of the football. We can’t give the Ravens the ball. The secret of our success against them in this stadium and everywhere we’ve played them, is the team that does the best job of taking care of the football wins the football game. We accomplished the third down part, which has also been a big part of the thing today, and did a good job of that. We have the turnovers, the take-away opportunity, we missed the field goal in the first half, we kicked the ball out of bounds in the second half. Just kind of had some things. The defense had to play through some adversity, with the short fields that they were on quite a bit based on the turnovers and so forth. Guys stepped up and did a good job, we were able to get some balls back which was good. Again, I thought the composure of the football team waned a little bit but we were able to get it back in there and go on. Had some things go positive and driving the ball down there. Missed opportunities were really the key to it today. Unfortunately that’s kind of been the story of our season.”

On if he’s thought about taking a job coaching at the University of Pittsburgh:
“No I haven’t.”

On him coaching next year:
“I don’t know what happens from here. But what I am sure of, though is how these guys, these players, how they have fought their tails off. And they really got to a point that they understand what it takes to win. And we didn’t achieve our goals this year, but I think that group that’s in that locker room right now, they’ve got the path figured out. It’s a little windy at times, it’s got some bumps in it and so forth, but I really feel like they’ve got it figured out. And it’s a good thing to build upon. But we didn’t finish the last game the way we wanted, with a win, going into the offseason that way. I think for the coaches and players, I’m proud of how they just kept their heads down, working their butts off. It’s a good springboard for the offseason for the football team. But I can’t answer where things are with me, personally, professionally, whatever. I don’t know, all I know is officially today I’m no longer employed. But that’s all I know.”

On if he’s thought about coaching college:
“I can’t comment on that.”

On if him coaching tomorrow will be decided tomorrow:
“I don’t know when anything will be decided, just because there’s a lot that goes into this, with me, with everybody. I think I said the other day, for myself where I am right now, my coaching career, and we’re at a different point than we were eight years ago. And I think that’s big. And I think this football team is a lot different than it was eight years ago. And that’s good. As I said, the guys in that room should know that, the leaders. And we’re in a good spot. It doesn’t have to go back, it’ll be tough times to fight through. But they don’t have to go backwards anymore.”

On meeting with Mike Brown:
“I meet with Mike every day.”

On him being wistful this week:
“No. When the season doesn’t go the way you want, you look at last Monday night, the last Tuesday night, last Wednesday night, but no not at all. To me, coming here to play, the game doesn’t get any better than this, coming here, coming to Pittsburgh, coming to Cleveland. It doesn’t get any better than that. That’s all I know about the NFL. For 18 of my 19 years in the NFL, I’ve been coming to these places and playing these games. For me it’s fun. And obviously coming here to a place that’s so special to me, with people over there, not as many of the players anymore, but the rest of the organization. It makes it so special to me.”

On what would bring him back:
“We sit down and we talk, and we all agree. It’s got nothing to do with money. Everybody speculates on this or that. I like where things are. As my boss says, ‘I’m probably saying too much.’”

On his favorite moment in Cincinnati:
“I think probably the victory over the Chiefs in 2003. They were undefeated, we are about defeated, and just how I think it was kind of a turning point of belief if you played physical football and make football plays, you win games. It doesn’t matter about any of the other stuff, and it takes everybody pulling together, not worried about whatever else is going on around them. I thought the spirit of the game that Sunday, we had good field position a lot that game, we made plays. We were worried about them returning a punt for touchdown, and we returned a punt for touchdown or a kickoff, I don’t remember which. We were worried about them making plays over the top, and we made big plays over the top. You know, so those kinds of things. I thought that was the most significant game for me. I think it was big.”

On his worst moment in Cincinnati, if Carson Palmer hadn’t hurt his knee during the playoffs:
“No, that wouldn’t be the worst. Everytime you lose, it’s the worst.”

On WR Jerome Simpson:
“The best thing about it, is that Jerome has been able to play through this stuff now. You’ve got to be excited about him. I was just standing out there and watching him during practice on Friday and watching Carson [Palmer] speaking with him and everything. And it’s like he’s the number one pick, and it’s so fun to see. And it’s like you’re going to be going through a little bit of growing pains, but there’s no one who’s going to work harder than him. And I believe stay grounded through it, which is going to be key.”

On this game showing the future of the team:
“They just keep doing it. There should be no reason to go backward. Because you’re doing it with guys, that it’s important, and it’s just that. And you just kind of cut through all this muck and get right down to the nitty gritty.”

On if he wants to be back and if there’s a middle ground:
“Yes. This has been on-going since the bye week last year, and we haven’t gotten things settled, and now we’re at the end, and I don’t know. It’s going to be something that both sides need to sit down and talk about and agree upon. And I need to go away and sleep on things, just like I did initially.”

On how he’s feeling right now:
“It’s not about me, I’m disappointed for our guys and I’m going to be fine. I’m worried about them. But I’m disappointed for our guys. They played so hard. I’m disappointed for our quarterback, who just puts every fiber in everything he does. And I’m disappointed for him. There at the end, I was confident with two shots into the end zone, we were going to win the game and make the PAT, not go for two. But it’s been that kind of year. That’s exactly what I was thinking about, and I just feel sorry for these guys. They fought their tails off and just battled, and battled and battled. And you deserve to win. We know how hard it is to win in the NFL, and yet, you get that close and you just need something positive to happen to put it over the hump. And today, they just kept hanging and hanging and hanging with all the bad, the fumbles and so forth, tipped-ball interceptions. It’s just unconventional things today. There’s not much you can do for that. We’ve had how many tip-pass interceptions this year? Again, some good plays today. [Safety] Reggie Nelson comes to the forefront and gets to play today, and it’s a good thing for the Bengals.”

On if there’s going to be an indoor practice facility:
“I don’t know, that’s something, real candidly that Mike [Brown], as the season goes to 18 games, it’s something that’s on his radar. And it’s important that he wants to get that done at some point. He realizes that if the season goes to 18 games, we’d have two more weeks left. We already saw a couple of weekends ago, with what happened to the Minnesota team and the Chicago team, the Vikings, the Giants and that kind of stuff and Green Bay getting travel and that kind of stuff with what the NFL is going to be up against. Let alone for games, let alone for practice, it’s a difficult thing. But Mike’s aware of that and talks with me about that. It’s not something they can get done overnight, and I don’t think anybody’s expecting that.”


On another tough loss:
“This was another tough one for us. This was a game we had a chance to win, and we just didn’t finish it. We had an opportunity to go into the offseason with three straight wins and feeling good about ourselves. The defense played really great. They gave us several chances to come back and win, we just didn’t make enough plays.”

On the status of coach Marvin Lewis:
“I haven’t had any discussions with him about this. He has been extremely focused on each game week to week. We know he is a great coach. I really don’t know what will happen. I’ve seen some crazy things happen, in this league. This was an emotional loss for everyone because it was our last game. As players, we can’t let the coaches’ status affect us, but it does.”

On the prospect of sweeping changes with the Bengals:
“I have no idea. None of us have any idea. Everyone in that locker room wishes we knew what was going to happen, but we can’t really change it, or let it affect us. We are all anxious to see what is going to happen.”

On what the Bengals need to get better:
“That’s a very broad question, and it’s too early to tell. With our record, it’s obviously not just one or two things. We’ll just all take time away from this and see what decisions are made.”

On whether he will be back with the Bengals:
“Obviously, I really don’t know. This isn’t like college, you don’t get to pick where you get to play. We’ll all have our exit interviews tomorrow, and we’ll see where it goes from there.”

On the scramble play where he fumbled:
“I didn’t do a good job securing the ball. I was trying to get the first down, and it slipped away from me. It was a bad play by me, and it really hurt us.”

On the Bengals’ last drive:
“We had a couple nice calls, and good, long plays that gave us a chance to get down field. We had the right plays called for the coverage they were playing. On second down, I thought we had a touchdown. That was the fade to Andre [Caldwell], but I think I threw it too long. On fourth down, we had three receivers to the left, and they had max-coverage. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Cedric [Peerman], but I couldn’t get the ball to him because of their pressure.”

On working with Andre Caldwell and Jerome Simpson:
“It’s been a blast. They are so energetic, and they are so excited. They want to be great players. They have the talent and mental makeup and speed to play in this game. Jerome really showed me something today after his fumble. He has a short memory, and he came back and stayed focused and made some big plays. It’s fun to see their improvement week by week.”

On the Ravens:
“It’s always a big game when we play them. To be competitive with them, you have to bring you’re ‘A’ game. You can’t have five turnovers and expect to win, expecially when you’re playing here in Baltimore. It’s fun to play against them. We know we have to play well. Their team is always good, and they have a great organization. Unfortunately, we couldn’t get it done today.”

On Ed Reed:
“When you’re playing against Ed Reed, you have to be aware of his presence at all times. As the play unfolds, you have to find out where he is. It always seems like he’s in the right place. He has great hands, and he does a great job on deflections. He’s always capable of making a big play.”


On the offense:
“We were good. We stubbed ourselves in the foot a couple times with the turnovers. We found some success in the second half, able to move the drive and get some drives going, but we came up short with the turnovers.”

On the direction of the team at the end of the season:
“We got on a nice track there. We found an identity, and we started playing the way we had prepared to play in the beginning of the season. But we came up short today. We tasted a little bit of victory the last couple of weeks, but the season’s over and there are new adventures next season.”

On the final play, and should it have been a running play:
“Yeah, that would have been a nice call, but somebody is in the position to make those calls, and they wanted to pass.”


On the defense:
“We played pretty solid for the most part. We didn’t give up any big plays. It just didn’t turn out the way we wanted it to.”

On his pass rush:
“Big-time players are supposed to make big-time plays. All we do is come out and try to get after them, do whatever it takes to get off the field and give the offense back the ball.”

On his rookie year:
“I got my opportunities to get on the field, and all I did was try to capitalize.”

On setting the rookie sack record:
“I would’ve rather gotten a win.”

On being a playmaker for the defense:
“When you get more reps and more opportunities to get on the field, and when you get that chance, you just have to capitalize on it.”

On the end of the season:
“As a team, we had a nice surge at the end. Everybody started playing better in all phases. We started off rocky, and we finished kind of strong, but today didn’t turn out like we wanted.”

On being an impact player in the NFL:
“You have to have that type of confidence. At first, I was getting one-on-one blocks, so I know I’m a pass-rusher, and you aren’t supposed to be able to stop me, so I have to bring my best move. I have an obligation as an NFL athlete to do that.”


On his big catch on the final drive:
“I know we needed a big play, and Carson Palmer made a great throw. He put it right on the money for me. It’s too bad we couldn’t score and pull out the victory.”

On playing alongside Jerome Simpson:
“We are both young guys, and we’re working hard. I think that both of us surprised some people because they don’t know how fast we are, so we were able to make some big plays today, but we just weren’t able to get it done.”

On the Bengals’ effort in the season finale:
“There’s a tremendous amount of pride on this team. This team has a lot of character, and I knew we’d come out and play well. We work hard. We play with pride. It just wasn’t enough today.”


On the defense:
“I think we played all right. Our first drive was a little shaky. We were able to anchor down and hold them to a field goal, but at the end of the day, no matter how well we played, it was just not enough. We have to make more plays. Obviously, get some more turnovers. It’s just one of those deals, I guess.”

On the pressure on QB Joe Flacco:
“It’s just kind of how it worked out. We always plan to put pressure on the quarterback, especially if we can get them into some favorable third downs, and we were able to do that for the most part, and we got him good. Our guys kept flooding inside. The pressures, he had to throw it away, and we got some sacks.”

On the last game of the season:
“You obviously want to finish on a good note. 2-1 isn’t bad, obviously, we would have loved to win this game. You still have that bitter taste in your mouth. It’s just good going into the off season and figure out what to work on.”


On the defense’s performance and the game coming down to the last play:
“I think we came in with a good game plan against the team, and we executed in all three phases. Here and there, we let some plays slip through our fingers, and when you give away five turnovers like we did, you don’t expect to walk off the field with a win. I think, overall, we did a pretty good job. [We] would’ve felt better if we made a lot more plays at the end to win the game. Unfortunately, [we did] not. We go back to the drawing board and hopefully get it done next year.”

On whether it was the same type of intensity despite the Ravens already clinching a playoff berth:
“Yeah, I think so. People would think just because they’re already in the playoffs, they’re not going to play as hard. They are the same old guys; trash-talking, physical up front, Ray Rice doing his deal, receivers catching the ball and [Joe] Flacco running around the pocket and making plays. It feels as if they came out ready to play as if it was a regular game.”


On his 12-catch performance:
“This was such a tough loss, that it doesn’t mean as much. I made all of those catches, but we didn’t win. So, it’s not that important. The fumble I had was very costly. It led to a touchdown, and really put us in bad position.”

On the Bengals turnovers:
“When you’re playing a game against the AFC North teams, turnovers are always huge. The games are always so close, that any turnover can turn them around. Today, I had a bad turnover and it cost us six points.”


On going against the Ravens defense:
“You always want to come out on the field and play great against the great ones, so you come out and compete with them and just get after each other. And that was my goal.”

On the last play and the Bengals making too many mistakes throughout the game:
“Yeah, too many mistakes; that held us back. But, this team has a lot of fight and a lot of heart. The guys kept fighting, and I think [the Ravens] were definitely worried in the end. I think we had them scared to death. We just ran out of time and out of plays. But, once again, we didn’t execute the way we wanted to. But, hats off to the guys for staying in the game and fighting their asses off.”

On his play this season and not making the Pro Bowl:
“I appreciate it. You just go out every Sunday and try to be the best guy you can be at your position, and that’s what I’ve worked hard for. Winning championships here in Cincinnati is the only thing that matters to me. We’ll go back to the drawing board and find a way to win.”


Opening comments:
“First of all, congratulations to our team for winning the game, finding a way to win. You get to this point in time in the season, and you don’t look at how pretty it is or anything like that. Bottom line, you find a way to win the game, and you have to be happy about that and feel good about that. I’m proud of our guys. I think we have, over time, figured out how to win football games, tight football games. We’ve been in a bunch of them, that’s for sure. And I like that about our football team – Derrick Mason’s accomplishment is incredible. I told the team those other two guys [Jerry Rice and Tony Gonzalez] I think they’re in pretty elite company with Derrick Mason. He’s one of the all-time greats. What Billy Cundiff did – and the last time that record was set, it was indoors with the old balls – so now, he’s got the new ‘K’ balls, and he’s outside, kicking in the AFC North and places that he’s played. I think that even tells you how impressive that record really is. Ed Reed leads the league in interceptions. He may end up leading the league when the day is over; I’m not sure, in interceptions, and he’s done it in, what, 10 games. That was the difference in the game today. I think our defense was lights-out with turnovers, coming up with stops on third-down and fourth-down, playing great in the red zone, there at the end, especially. Obviously, I’m disappointed with the one they scored, and we’ll look at that one hard, too. But, I think our defense played out of their minds. Offensively, I’m disappointed with some of the things we did offensively. I’m a little bit frustrated with some of those things, but we have to find a way to win the next game. But, we are who we are, and we have to move forward with that. I’m very confident that our offense, our coaches, our players and our team – that as a football team, we’ll find a way to win from here on out. That’s what our focus has to be.”

On if the early Steelers’ lead against the Browns forced him to change strategy today:
“I don’t know. I didn’t have a chance to kind of compare how it would have been if they were losing and what process we would’ve gone through. They got out in front so fast, you kind of just forgot about it. I think we focused on winning the game. We did get into a situation where we started getting some injuries. [Dannell] Ellerbe went down. Three or four guys went down for us that hurt us, and we weren’t going to have a chance to substitute anybody out. We were just trying to hang on and make sure we could get substitution groups in packages on the field. When Michael [Oher] got tweaked – whether he could have come back in or not, I think he could have – we basically just decided not to put him back in at that point. Haloti [Ngata] – same thing. He probably could’ve come back in, but we didn’t want to mess with that. Maybe those guys would’ve come back in, in a different situation.”

On if Oher leaving the game limited what he wanted to do on offense:
“No. We can do [similar things] in our offense with those other guys.”

On how the Ravens match up to the possible first-round opponent:
“We think we match up great against everybody. We feel good about our chances. We’ve been there before – we’ve been on the road before, and we understand that path. The bottom line is you have to win one at a time, for four games, and that’s how it works. We’ve won two and lost the third one. We’ve won one and lost the second one. So, our goal is to win four. But, it starts with wherever we go next week.”

On if the Ravens like to go on the road in the playoffs:
“I think we would’ve loved to have been at home. I’m disappointed we didn’t get the home game for our fans. I think our guys love playing here. I think we have a big advantage here. But, we’ve been there before, and we’re a mentally-tough group. I think our team reflects Baltimore. I don’t think we’re intimidated by the opportunity in front of us, and we’ll be looking forward to it.”

On if not going to the Super Bowl takes away from the satisfaction of reaching the playoffs three straight years, or if the satisfaction remains:
“I think it’s both. You feel both ways. You feel like you want to get there and you want to win it, and that’s the goal. But, I’ve never bought into the ‘Super Bowl or bust’ thing. This ’31-bust’ thing in the National Football League – that’s a pretty high standard. But, we’ll be disappointed if we don’t win it all. But, we have to focus on the next game, and that’s really what it boils down to. You win one, and then you have a chance to win two. Really, that’s the only way you can look at it right now. But, I’m proud of our guys for what they’ve done the past two years.”


On beating the Bengals today:
“It wasn’t a great day, but we got a win. You have to be happy about that. We’re going to the playoffs for bigger and better things. That’s the important thing right now.”

On handling the Bengals’ pressure:
“Those kinds of things happen. Third down situations, they’re definitely going to come after you and put pressure on you. The best thing you can do is not turn the ball over. The one interception I had today, I thought I had a touchdown pass. Todd Heap was wide open, and the guy came all the way from the middle of the field and made a good play.”

On Cincinnati having five of Flacco’s 10 interceptions this season:
“Yeah, I had one today, and looking back at the other game, there are a couple that I’d like to have back. The other ones, they just happened.”

On the flea-flicker to Todd Heap:
“It was just a screen, I wanted to be patient. They were coming, but as soon as I threw the ball to Todd, I could tell there was a big area of field for him to go.”

On passing Ben Roethlisberger for most wins in his first three years as a quarterback:
“Winning football is the name of the game. That’s what we try to do every week. This team has been great he last three years. I’m just glad to be a part of it and have my input to it. Hopefully, we can go get four more, and that’s what we’re trying to do. I think we have the team that can do it.”

On the keys to winning road playoff games:
“It’s just a football game. It’s going to be a great atmosphere no matter where it’s played. Going on the road is just something we have to do. I don’t look at it any different than any other game. It’s definitely great to play here [M&T Bank Stadium] and have your crowd on your side, but a football game is a football game. And a playoff game is extra special. I think that’s how this whole team looks at it.”


On if this performance was enough to get the team to Dallas:
“When a team has your number, let’s just face it, they’re in our division, and the teams we’re going to play now are going to be familiar folks. We know we have to do a better job on offense going forward. With that being said, it’s a new season. I’m glad we won this game because it was personal. It’s personal when a team has your number and beats you three times straight. But right now, our focus is on the next team. They’re not too many teams sitting at 12-4. That’s a major accomplishment, and it’s the most wins I’ve ever had in a season. I’m going into my third playoff run with experience under my belt, and this is a different animal. The games are just like this. We’ve got the experience, the ability to win down the wire. Right now, it’s all guts and glory. It’s the playoffs, and that’s what it’s all about.”

On the couple of runs he had that he almost broke for long gains:
“That’s my defender, that’s my guy, I have to make him miss. There’s a few times where we ran a play where I got up to that guy.

On not fumbling all year:
“I had a fumble-free season. I don’t know how many carries, but I had a fumble-free season. I feel pretty good. On the play where my shoulder made contact with the ground, I was wishing the ball was in the other hand. That way I could have used my off arm. But I knew it wasn’t a fumble.”

On if the Ravens don’t win the Super Bowl, will the season be a failure:
“I wouldn’t say a failure. Look at our record, and look at what we overcame. If it panned out any different, we’re 12-4, we could easily be a two seed. In the AFC, everybody’s playing marvelous football. Every team that’s on top of us, New England, Pittsburgh, we could’ve beaten those guys. That’s how close the margin of error is at this level. When we play them, it’s going to be one of those games where it’s a full four-quarter game.”


On if this the way to roll into the playoffs:
“What better way? We started a legacy along the way, up and down, up and down, up and down, putting these pieces together every day. At the end of the day, you end up 12-4, not a bad season. Now we go for the second half of the season.”

On if it matters who they play and where it is in the playoffs:
“I think one reason it doesn’t matter for us is because our defense travels well. We play extremely well on the road as well as home. Our track record says we’ll play anybody at any time anywhere. Any time you can pack up a great defense like that and take it on the road, you have a chance to win.”

On if they were paying attention to the scoreboard at all today:
“To who? We didn’t need to. It’s different from years past. We weren’t going into this game hoping for somebody to win to get us into the playoffs. We had already clinched, and if something changed on any other side, then it changed. But if it didn’t, then we came in and took care of our business. We went from 11 to 12 [wins], and that’s the most important thing. I just think it’s huge. You go through the whole course of the year, and you look at the top teams around the league, and you find yourself sitting at 12-4, that’s an exciting time. I think it goes back to zero now.”


On what he accomplished getting out there today:
“It was good to get out there. I feel like I wanted to get some reps and get my feet back under me. I thought I got that accomplished and to get a win on top of it, albeit not the way we wanted to, but 12 wins is 12 wins, there’s nothing wrong with that.”

On if there were any physical setbacks today:
“No. No setbacks. Nothing to write about. I’m just excited to get it going, get my feet back under me and get it going next week.

On the flea-flicker:
“It was a play we practiced this week. It caught them off guard, and we caught them rushing in towards the passer, and it was as wide open as I’ve seen a screen play like that in a while. Our guys were blocking downfield, and it seemed as if I were setting up blocks. I wasn’t really doing much but setting up blocks. Our guys were staying on their guys, and it was a big play for us.”

On if he’s got a preference as to who the Ravens would play in the playoffs:
“At this point, it doesn’t really matter because right now I think we’re just excited to be in, and who we’re matched up against and who we play, it doesn’t matter, we’re just looking forward to it at this point.”

On how he feels at the end of this season compared to seasons past:
“I feel pretty good right now. I haven’t played in a few weeks so all of the little bumps and bruises have had time to heal. I feel like I’m where I want to be right now. I’m feeling as good as I have since I’ve been to the playoffs in my career.”


On his throwing a punch at a Bengal:
“I was getting into it with him all day, exchanging words, I could have cost my team. I’ve got to be better in that area. Luckily I got away with one. Usually I don’t get away with anything. They were too busy looking for the spot of the ball.”

On if he’d rather play KC or the Colts:
“It doesn’t matter. Either way, it’s going to be tough. This is [the] playoffs. I mean it’s January football, and either way it’s going to be tough. We’re definitely going to have to perform better. We’ve got to be prepared to play 60 minutes, especially in the playoffs because if you look around the league, everybody that’s in the playoffs took care of business today.”

On if the Ravens have the momentum heading into the playoffs that they’d like:
“Going into the game, we had some momentum, and we were fired up, and then they made some plays and naturally that can crush momentum, but we got the ‘W.’ We’re definitely going to go back and look at the tape tomorrow, and we’re going to get our corrections made and get ready for these playoffs. First things first, 12 wins is 12 wins. If we were 4-12, you all would be writing exactly how terrible the Ravens are, but we got the 12 wins. By any means necessary, we got it done. This is the NFL. This is the highest level of football, and we won 12. So you can’t take away from that. But you’ve also got to look at match-ups. Cincinnati, they do a good job matching up against us. Others play them, and the other teams have a good day. But when they play us, their defense looks like the 85 Bears, Carson Palmer looks like Joe Montana in his prime. It’s just match-ups. They match up really well against us just like we match up really well against Cleveland and Pittsburgh and all the other teams around the NFL. They do a good job of matching up against us.”

On ending the three-game losing streak against the Bengals:
“I didn’t even think about that. I was just happy to get the win. I didn’t want to go into the playoffs with a loss. You don’t want to have that sour taste, and you‘ve got to prepare for a playoff game after a loss. It’s good we got the streak going. Now maybe we can get something rolling against them like we did a couple of years ago. Like I said, we got the 12. We snapped that streak, and we’re ready for January football.”

On watching the score of the Steelers-Browns’ game:
“You look at the score at first, it was 14-0, then it was 14-3. And then it just went all downhill. I was like ‘them boys [took] care of business.’ You’ve got to know what team that is over there. I knew Cleveland matches up with them well, but they had some injuries, and they’re a veteran team, and they were going to take care of business regardless. They were going to be ready to play.”

On if anything less than the Super Bowl will be a failure:
“Absolutely. There’s only one winner, and nobody asks who took second place. We don’t get satisfied on moral victories. It’s been years around here we’ve been number one in defense, number one in turnovers, but we have no hardware to show for it. Nobody even knows that because we didn’t win the Super Bowl that year. So definitely, anything less than Dallas is a failure.”


On the Ravens scoring 13 points off of five Cincinnati turnovers:
“I don’t know, I don’t have much to say. It’s just one of those days.”

On the Ravens making the playoffs:
“It’s the first step for us. It’s the first goal you set coming into the season. At this point, everyone is 0-0. It’s anybody’s game.”

On the key to being successful in the playoffs:
“Everybody has to be on the same page. Everybody has to believe in each other. Everybody has to have the same goal. There’s nothing that you really do significantly different from the regular season to the playoffs. Guys just have to clue in to what they are doing, and pay attention to detail. You have to believe.”

On the Ravens compared to other successful team’s you’ve been on:
“I think we have exactly what it takes to win a championship. And that’s not me just saying that because I’m here. I’ve been with other teams, and I’ve been to the Super Bowl. I don’t think we had half the talent that we have here. So I definitely think we have what it takes to win it all.”


On whether the Ravens will be able to turn it on enough offensively to win in the playoffs:
“We’re going to have to. We can’t allow ourselves to go into next week – whether it be at Indianapolis or Kansas City – and play the way that we played today. We’ve got to go in there clicking on all cylinders. We’ve got to make some things work, regardless of what is called. That’s my thing now, whatever is called, make it work, because you can’t have anymore excuses during the game or after the game. Whatever is called, we’ve got to go in there, we’ve got to make it work. However, we’ve got to find the right guy, we’ve got to run the right routes, we’ve got to find the hole, we’ve got to block. Whatever it takes in the postseason, we’ve got to do it.”

On what the problem was offensively today:
“Cincinnati has a great defense. They played each and every team this year very strong, and the ball just hadn’t bounced their way. But, for us, we’ve just got to go out there and make it work. I guess that has to be the theme of the playoffs – whatever is being called, we have to make it work. We can no longer point the finger. We’ve got to make it work as an offensive unit. There’s no more excuses, because excuses are going to get you beat. The teams that make excuses are going to have to sit at home next week, so we can’t make anymore excuses. Whatever play is called, we’ve got to make it work, so you can’t blame Cam [Cameron]. Whatever it is, we have to make it work.”

On whether he was surprised to hear boos at the end of the first half:
“It’s disheartening, but they’re the fans. You’ve got to understand they come to the games to see guys perform and [see] guys make plays on both sides of the ball. When the score is 6-0 going into halftime, they’re a little disappointed and we’ve got to understand. We take it with a grain of salt and move on because wherever we go in the playoffs, we’re going to hear boos, too. Whether the score is 6-0, 14-0, it doesn’t matter, we’re going to hear boos. So, you take it for what it is worth and move on, come out in the next half and try to get better.”

On whether he wants another shot to beat the Colts:
“I don’t care who we play because Kansas City is just as good as Indianapolis. Wherever we go, we have to win a football game and move forward.”

On whether the Ravens know much about the Chiefs:
“We played Kansas City, what, a year ago? We played Indianapolis, what, a year ago? We know them both. The good thing about both teams, I think… With Indianapolis, we’ve played them a lot. That offensive and defense system [in Kansas City] we’ve seen before. That offensive coordinator [Charlie Weis] and defensive coordinator [Romeo Crennel] were in New England. We’re kind of familiar with what they do. They’re playing hard, just as well as Indianapolis is playing hard, so wherever we go, we have to win a football game.”

On making the playoffs three straight years and whether anything less than a Super Bowl championship means nothing:
“Why should we be proud if we make the playoffs? If you don’t win the Super Bowl, nobody remembers you. It’s good, in a sense, that you give yourself an opportunity to get to the Super Bowl, but if you lose in the first round, second round, AFC Championship game or the Super Bowl, nobody remembers you. The only team that people remember are the guys holding up that Lombardi trophy. So, I’m sure that’s fine a little bit, but in the big picture if there is no Super Bowl, then we’re starting back at Plan A.”

On whether there was any desire to have the starters rest in the second half:
“Why? We didn’t have the game won. The score was 6-0, and why pull the starters when we’re not consistently going down the field. We wanted to go out with a win and go into the playoffs with momentum.”

On becoming the third player in NFL history with 60 receptions in 11 straight years:
“It’s a blessing. To me, it’s an honor. It tells me that one, I’ve been able to last for a long time. I’ve been able to go for so many years without missing a game. And people that I’ve played with, the offensive coordinators that I’ve played under and the quarterbacks that I’ve played with, have had a lot of confidence in me to go out each and every game and make plays. That says a lot about the offensive coordinator and the quarterback, because if they don’t have confidence in me, they’re not going to throw me the ball. So, for me, go out, be consistent and stay injury-free, and play football the way I’ve been playing it since I was about eight or nine [years old] when my brothers would beat me up. (laughter)”

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