Q: How do you feel? CP:
Good, I feel good. Obviously a big challenge this week, got to come out on fire, got to come out and execute and try to get some points up early and put some pressure on them.
Q: If someone had told you both these teams would be 0-3 going into this game:CP:
I wouldn't believe it, definitely wouldn't have believed it. With the year they had last year, you'd expect them to start the same. With our history and the way we've started in the past seasons, you'd expect us to start the same, too. But it's the next game on the schedule and we desperately need a win as badly as they desperately need a win.
Q: What kind of game do you expect?CP:
You can't expect anything in rivalry games. We've had had shootouts with them, we've had low-scoring defensive struggles. You can't prepare for one or the other, you can't expect one or the other. You just need to come out and worry about yourself. You need to worry about it as an offense, and worry about communication issues we're going to have with the fronts they have. You worry about issues like stepping right and getting our eyes in the right place, and seeing the right things, because you don't know what to expect.
They may go off on offense like they did up there last year (a 51-45 Browns win), or they could throw a bunch of picks to us like they did in Week 14 or 15. So you've just got to handle your stuff and try to execute as well as you can on offense. If they've got a lead, you've got to keep playing. And if you get a lead, you've got to keep playing, because you never know what's going to happen late in the game.
Q: Can you continue to take the pounding that you've taken and survive the year?CP:
I think so. I think I'm built for that. Having some extra cushion, being 245 pounds, it gives me a little extra cushion for when those big guys are laying on you. But in no way do I want to get sacked six times, and I really don't think that will happen again. With the guys we have up front and the corrections we've already made, some of that will take away some of the confusion we've had. And it's just as much on me as it is anybody else. I need to get rid of the ball in certain situations and do a better job of that, taking away some of the hits from myself.
Q: There are guys that aren't being blocked, coming at you full steam. Is that a communication problem or something else?CP:
Communication. And like I said, we've talked about it, we've fixed it, and I don't expect it to happen again.
Q: Are teams doing anything different to take Chad (Ocho Cinco) out of games this season?CP:
Some of the same stuff. We see a lot of the same coverages from year to year. Nothing too exotic, nothing too out of the ordinary.
Q: What's the difference, then, between this and stretches where he's had more production?CP:
There's games in the past where he's had big gains, but there's also stretches where he hasn't gotten his catches, just because he's double-teamed. And a majority of the time he's getting a bunch of catches is when we're running the ball successfully and they've got to take one of those double-teams off and put that safety in the box, as opposed to just letting them double-team Chad. We've got to get going in other areas in order to get him going, and that's always the case.
Q: People have talked a lot about what plays should have been run in overtime. As a player, how much of a factor is the play call, and how much is just execution of whatever is called?CP:
The last two runs we ran, on one of them we had a perfect look and just missed in one spot. and the run went for nothing. I believe on the second one, the D-tackle just made a great play and got us. So it's execution. Maybe it's not always the right call at the right time, but the one before we got the right call at the right time, we just didn't execute. It's not perfect.
If the play's blocked perfectly, it goes for 15 yards and the safety makes a play or the corner makes a play. But very rarely does any team block more than one or two plays perfectly in a game. It's very tough to do. Defenses are so good in this league. But we'd been running the ball for four or five yards a pop. We had a big one with Chris (Perry) on the touchdown. You're hope on one of those runs to get something back and get you in a third-and-2 or third-and-three, a manageable situation. We just didn't quite execute like we needed to, and then I didn't help us out at all on third down by not throwing a good ball to T.J. That's why you're a team. It's just as much on a player as it is a coach. That's why you call it a football team.