Random quotes from around the league
Thursday, Oct. 9, 2003
Redskins LB LaVar Arrington on Buccaneers DT Warren Sapp, who also gets some work on offense near the goal line: "Sapp, I'm going to get you … If they put you out there, I'm going to get him. That's disrespectful in my opinion, too, to put defensive guys on offense that are linemen. I'm gunning. You come out there, you've got some killers on the other side of the ball — just like you're a killer when you're on defense."
Sapp’s response to Arrington, which referenced the Redskins’ difficulty learning Marvin Lewis’ defense in 2002: "You tell Mr. Can't Get Right, I'll be there at 10:30 a.m. sharp, Eastern Standard Time. Tell him don't be looking for me because I'm easily found. … Spare me. Is LaVar jealous that he can't play offense? Is he jealous that he can't get right? Tell `Can't Get Right' that his plate is full. It's a little bit too much to try to take on me.”
Steelers LB Jason Gildon on WR Hines Ward making a speech to his teammates the day after a 33-13 loss to Cleveland — a talk that reportedly didn’t go over well with some Steelers: “I definitely would have handled it differently. Given where we are, there's bigger things to worry about. We're sitting here 2-3, and the biggest problem we have is righting the ship, and I think that's what we should be concentrating on."
Ward, who admitted he demanded more throws from QB Tommy Maddox in Sunday’s loss, on his speech and the fallout from Sunday: “Maybe people felt my reaction after the game was `Throw me the ball' or `I didn't get enough passes.’ Maybe some players took that the wrong way as me being selfish. I apologize if anybody thought that way. That's the first thing I got up and said to the team Monday. I didn't want people to think I was selfish. It was me being frustrated. To go out there and to lose to the Cleveland Browns on national TV, I was disgusted."
Raiders ORG Mo Collins on losing to the then-winless Bears on Sunday: "We stopped ourselves. Them boys couldn't stop a cold. ... Right now, we're fighting, scraping and clawing to get by mediocre teams."
Browns DE Kenard Lang to Cleveland reporters surrounding the (empty) locker of DE Courtney Brown after he garnered AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors; the oft-criticized defensive end rarely speaks to the media: "Don't talk bad about the guy and then come talk to him when he's doing well. Treat him the same all the time."
Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2003
Steelers head coach Bill Cowher on deciding to keep watching Monday’s Colts-Bucs game even after the Colts went down 35-14 after QB Peyton Manning threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown with 5:09 left: “I have been seeing those myself. I said this might be a great lesson right here to see how he handles it.”
Cowher on the troubles of his starting quarterback, Tommy Maddox, who has been intercepted eight times this season; three of which have been returned for scores: “Somebody told me the other day that, a couple of years ago, Peyton had six or seven (interceptions) returned for touchdowns. It’s just one of those things that happens, and who knows why they happen? But if you don't throw them, they don't have a chance to get returned for touchdowns, and that's what you have to look at.''
Buccaneers head coach Jon Gruden on his team blowing a 35-14 lead with less than four minutes to play Monday night vs. Indianapolis: “For the first time since I've been here, a team was able to overcome tremendous odds in a predictable situation, convert some third downs, and was able to throw the ball and have success. What can I say? I'm not going to stand up here and justify what occurred. We got bombed in the ninth inning. We have to move on.”
Seahawks head coach Mike Holmgren on sending rookie PK Josh Brown out to kick a 58-yard field goal after QB Matt Hasselbeck was sacked near the end of the first half vs. Green Bay Sunday; Brown hit the kick, which set a franchise record: “I was so ticked off that we took the sack right there. I mean, I was off the charts, so I probably wasn't thinking straight. I just grabbed him and I said, 'Go out and kick it.' I had no idea how long that kick was.”
Chiefs head coach Dick Vermeil on keeping WR-RS Dante Hall on an even keel after his amazing run of success: “Some guys need it more than others. Some don't need it at all. There's two or three different ways you can go when you experience success for the first time. I think Kurt Warner handled it super in 1999. And I think Dante Hall will handle it real well here.''
Jets head coach Herman Edwards on listing QB Chad Pennington as doubtful on this week’s injury report (although he will not play this Sunday vs. Buffalo) after Pennington threw Monday for the first time since dislocating his left wrist in the preseason: “I don't know if he's ahead, but for him to go out and throw and for all of mankind to put it on TV like we found our lost son, I have to say something.”
Tuesday, Oct. 7, 2003
Giants TE Jeremy Shockey on some of the team’s fans leaving when the Dolphins had a 16-10 lead with six minutes left in Sunday’s 23-10 loss to Miami: “It’s just discouraging. You have these people paying high-priced tickets, and it’s all right. We have great fans, don’t get me wrong. We have the best fans in the world, when things are going right. But when things are kind of hitting the fan and they are going bad, (the fans) don’t want to have any part of us, which is fine. We play for ourselves. We play for ourselves and our coaches.”
Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan upon being asked if he felt there was a clip that wasn’t called during Chiefs KR Dante Hall’s game-winning return in Sunday’s 24-23 loss to Kansas City: “If you’re asking me if there was a clip, yeah, there was a clip. It doesn’t take a football genius to figure that one out, especially looking at it on the tape. But officials aren’t 100 percent, just like our players aren’t 100 percent. Some things get by them and other things don’t.”
Packers QB Brett Favre on his improved play after recently sitting down for a chat with offensive coordinator Tom Rossley and asking for more freedom in the offense: “That’s what I’m capable of doing, making something out of nothing. I told Tom two weeks ago, ‘Just give me a chance. Allow me to do that.’ I’m not saying we just go in blindfolded and say, ‘Well, Brett will dig us out of any hole.’ But just call plays, trust that I can do that.”
Buccaneers WR Keenan McCardell on his team’s collapse from a 21-point lead late in the fourth quarter to lose to the Colts, 38-35, in overtime: “You’ve got to seal the envelope and put it in the mail, and we didn’t seal the envelope.”
Colts head coach Tony Dungy on the wild comeback: “I’ve never been in one quite like this, where we were so far down and shooting ourselves in the foot and getting to the point where you almost thought you were out of it. You get 21 points behind these guys, it’s tough to visualize coming back and winning. But nobody on our sideline gave up.”
Monday, Oct. 6, 2003
Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio on his first NFL victory as a head coach, a 27-21 win against the Chargers: “I'm relieved, I guess. More relief than joy, really.”
Eagles QB Donovan McNabb on his team’s 27-25 win vs. the Redskins, in his first game since Rush Limbaugh said McNabb was overrated because the media wanted to see a black quarterback succeed: “I don't think I have to go out and prove myself. I just have to go out and be myself. I'm a playmaker, a leader for this team and I can't let anything outside distract me.”
49ers QB Jeff Garcia on celebrating San Francisco’s 24-17 win against the Lions a week after WR Terrell Owens criticized his play to the media: “Both of us were very uncomfortable with the way it had gotten and didn't want to see it go on any longer. I don't like having any sort of negativity in the locker room. ... Considering the distractions that took place this week, it was a difficult week.''
Patriots RB Mike Cloud on his seven-carry, 73-yard, two-TD performance that led New England to a 38-30 victory over Tennessee in his first game back from a league-mandated four-game suspension: “As I went to bed last night, I had visions of something good happening. I guess the dream was right.”
Bills WR Eric Moulds on RB Travis Henry, who ran for 85 yards and two touchdowns with sore ribs in Buffalo’s 22-16 OT win against the Bengals: “He's a warrior. If we could get everyone on this team to play like this guy when he's hurt, we can do great things.”
Chiefs RS Dante Hall on his fourth TD return in four games — a 93-yard gem which produced the game-winning points in Kansas City's come-from-behind 24-23 victory over visiting Denver: “The first part of that return was not smart at all. I caught it maybe on the eight, then I retreated back to the five, then the two. I got dumber and dumber and dumber.”
Packers C Mike Flanagan on Green Bay's 35-13 win in a game that featured numerous storylines, including the return of Seahawks head coach Mike Holmgren, who led the Green Bay to a Super Bowl title during his successful tenure there before leaving for Seattle, and Packers RB Ahman Green facing his old team after being traded away by Holmgren: “It definitely means something to them. It was personal. You know, there's that 'Did Mike make Brett or did Brett make Mike?' Obviously, Ahman, they thought he was expendable. All that stuff, it makes it personal. Maybe they won't say it, but it is.”
Raiders CB Charles Woodson on the defending AFC Champions’ 24-21 loss to the Bears, which dropped Oakland's record to a disappointing 2-3: “This is the hardest loss I've taken. I can't see it getting any worse.”
Vikings QB Gus Frerotte, who has filled in for starting QB Daunte Culpepper and led Minnesota to two impressive victories, including a 39-26 victory at Atlanta in which the Vikings rallied from a 20-12 halftime deficit, on his team’s 5-0 start: “I grew up in Pittsburgh in the 1970s, with all that `We Are Family' stuff with the Pirates. It's kind of like that here.''
Dolphins RB Ricky Williams on his role as a decoy that set up WR James McKnight for a 68- yard TD run on a reverse and proved to be the go-ahead score in the second quarter of the Dolphins’ 23-10 victory: “It was kind of funny. (Offensive coordinator) Norv (Turner) put that in and said they are going to chase me around. I think he realized they were keying on me and to call that play was huge. That was a turning point for us.”
Panthers S Mike Minter on the addition of free-agent RB Stephen Davis who had 159 rushing yards and one touchdown in the Panthers’ 19-13 victory over the Saints: “Stephen Davis is the best thing that has ever happened to this football team. Never before have we had a running back who could just grind the game out for us, and it's a pleasure watching him seal it for us from the sidelines.”