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Carson Palmer Press Conference


Q: Carson, how are your spirits? CP:

I'm good, considering we're 1-4 and we're nowhere near where we expected to be. But this team has got all the spirit we need to get a win. We're not down on ourselves. We're disappointed, but we're not depressed. We can't wait to play. Today out there at practice, guys are flying around, guys are fired up. It felt like everybody wanted to play today just to get this past month of bad taste out of our months. But we're ready to play and we're excited. We can't wait until Sunday.

Q: Did you do some extra work on third downs today?CP:

 There's been an emphasis on third down. We've looked at a lot of things we've done. We're off here and there by little tiny margins, whether it's a small mental error, whatever it's been. Brat kind of said we've been snake bitten. A third down that a defensive lineman gets knocked off the line of scrimmage and just jumps up and flails in the air and he tips the ball and we have a guy open. Just little tiny things that have gone wrong, and we worked hard on it and we knew every time we were working on third down today, we were all calling it out, we were talking about it offensively, and we're ready to turn third down around for us.

Q: Did you do some extra reps?CP:

Did a couple of extra sets. 

Q: Does missing players like Chris Henry and Tab Perry and Antonio Chatman hurt you on third down?CP:

 It's not just third down you're affected, your whole game plan's affected when you're missing guys like that. But I've said this a number of times: It doesn't matter who our third receiver is, we've got guys. You think about a guy like Glenn Holt and all he's done is try to make plays and make big plays. You think back to the Cleveland game, when he made a couple of big catches, a big touchdown catch.  

So there have been guys just been waiting for the opportunity, sitting behind Chad and T.J. and Chris Henry, and now with Antonio down, it's got to be Glenn and he's got to step up and make plays. We're counting on him, when his number is called, to make a play that we expect Chad to make and a play that we expect T.J. to make. So there's no letdown offensively for us. We plug another guy in. Everybody on offense in our unit expects him to make plays and knows he's capable of making plays, so he'll do that.

Q: Marvin says you put a ton of pressure on yourself. With the offensive injuries and the struggling running game, are you taking more chances?CP:

 Yeah, I've thrown a couple balls I might not have in another situation. You think back to years past in different situations in games, in certain situations you need to take chances and try to squeeze balls into certain spots. When they're complete, they're great. When they're incomplete or they're interceptions, you look back and think, 'I shouldn't have thrown it.' But I do put a lot of pressure on myself and I have a lot of high expectations on myself. 

When a guy goes down, I need to step up my game, Chad needs to step up his game, T.J. needs to step up his game. When one part of the puzzle kind of falls off, everybody else needs to bring it together and make sure they're that much better on the next play or make sure they know exactly what's going on and what plays can be made in a certain play, because you're lacking Chris Henry or you're lacking a certain guy at a certain position.

Q: The last couple games you've shown as much frustration as you ever have. Is it frustration over losing or is it guys not being in the right spot?CP:

 Combination. I think everybody's a little bit on edge around here. Every time we look up, we have boards in the offensive and defensive rooms, and every time you look up at them and see our production and see our record there, you're just naturally on edge around here just because we have such high expectations. We expect to win every game. Obviously we haven't done that. So everybody's a little on edge and I have lost my cool a couple of times and I apologize for that. I'll try to contain myself and be calm.

Q: Do you need to let Marvin handle the emotional issues?CP:

 The head coach is the leader of the team. He's the one, that if he's upset with an individual player or an individual referee that I've lost my cool on ... I need to turn that over to him and let him do that, and try to stay calm and remain positive and try to stay within myself.

Q: Some fans like to see the quarterback get on guys. Isn't that part of your role? CP:

Yeah. I mean, there's ways to do it. Get into the New England thing. I apologize for that. I shouldn't have done it when I did it. There's a lot of things that happen around here when the media's not present, when there's not cameras in your face. There's a lot of meetings when it's just team and practices when it's just team. So those things happen then. But like I said, in certain situations you don't ... I apologize for what I did in certain situations when there's cameras around and when there's people around, because that doesn't need to be seen. That's personal stuff between individual players and within the team.

Q: How's your timing with Chad?CP:

 It's good. I missed him on an out route in the game that normally you hit 10 out of 10 times. I was off on that. It just was a bad throw. But for the most part, other than a couple of plays here and there, we've been in pretty good sync and same thing with T.J. And I need to get Glenn and bring him up to the speed that we're at with the other two guys.

Q: Chad says he's played horribly. Is he being hard on himself? CP:

I wouldn't say he's played horribly. He definitely hasn't played his best football, along with me. I haven't played my best football. He's hard on himself, I'm extremely hard on him. We go through different practices, we have different emphasis on different things. Today we had a certain emphasis on one thing, and he couldn't have been any better about what he did on those certain plays. I'm not going to go into exactly what it was. He's so easy to coach from teammate to teammate, and he's so good at coaching me: 'Hey, it's hard to catch a low ball on a crossing route, you need to put the ball out in front of us.' But going back to what you said, he hasn't played great football, he hasn't played his best football. l think he's got tons of room for improvement, but offensively, nobody's playing their best football right now.

Q: Is he equally hard on you?CP:

 We talk all the time about staying on each other. There's no harsher critic on Chad Johnson than Chad.

Q: Do you think Chad is selfish?CP:

 All receivers are a little bit selfish because they all want the ball. You want a selfish receiver. You want receivers who want the ball. He takes some unfair criticism here and there. But he's going to get it, and he knows it, when we're not winning and he's not leading the AFC in catches. Because of the stuff he does off the field to attract attention to himself. He knows it's coming. If we're not winning, it's not coming. If he's not leading the AFC it's coming. 

But as far as being selfish, every receiver is selfish. If they're not they probably shouldn't be playing receiver because they don't want the ball. T.J. and Chad don't understand why the ball isn't thrown to them every single play, because they think they're open every single play, because in their minds they can't be covered. Which is exactly what you want being a quarterback. You don't want a guy who says, 'I don't think I can get open on this.'

Q: What happened on the last interception in Kansas City?CP:

 I'm not going to get into specifics. We talked about it, we covered it, we'll improve on it and it won't happen again.

Q: The Jets third-down defense hasn't been very good:CP:

As much as we're struggling, it doesn't matter who we're playing, whether they're giving up 48 percent or 10 percent. We just need to execute what we do and not worry about how good or bad they are on third down. It comes down to us, like it does every single week.

Q: Would it be good for Marvin to show more emotion?CP:

 The fans may want it. The players don't want it. You don't want a coach who's depressed or saying, 'Woe is me.' He may not show emotion with you guys, but we see it every day in practice, in meetings. I don't know if the fans want a Bill Parcells-type emotion guy. If we're 0-6 or 6-0, Marvin doesn't change. That's what you want in a coach, a coach who's consistent, who doesn't get down on players. You want a coach who inspires players. Marvin doesn't get depressed or talk down to players. He tries to inspire players with his enthusiasm. Whether it's yelling or not. Sometimes he's yelling but he's on people because he knows they can do better. I'm not sure exactly what people want. But as far as the team is concerned, we see plenty of emotion, too much emotion sometimes in meetings, but that's just the way he is. He's so passionate about what he's coaching. 

Q: You have more interceptions at this point in the season than you've had before. Why?CP:

 A couple times it's been bad decisions. A couple times you're down late in the game, like against New England, and you're just trying to make something happen. What you do with the last interception against New England is throw it away, but throwing the ball away doesn't give you an opportunity to make a first down in that situation when you need a score. Some games you've got to squeeze balls in there. When it gets picked off, you say, 'Man, I shouldn't have thrown that.' When it's a first down or touchdown, it's a great throw. But there are a number of throws I wish I could have back that were bad throws, bad decisions, and maybe one or two in games trying to squeeze it in trying to get the ball moved. There are a number of picks that looking back on film, I wish I had taken a checkdown or run. There have been a lot of bad decisions.
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