Dungy: James "Making it Look Routine"

Tony Dungy talked about the Bengals, the Colts winning streak, Edgerrin James and home field advantage at his press conference on Monday.

(on how difficult it is to have a nine-game win streak)

"It is. This team has done a good job finishing up last year and the beginning of this year, of going to work every week, playing close to our best level of football, and that's a hard thing to do because you do have injuries, you do have guys get nicked up, changes you have to make, and playing at your level week in and week out is very hard. We've done it quite well this season and we're going to have to see if we can continue to do that and play a little bit better the second half of the year. I really like our team and the way we prepare and practice and that usually leads to pretty good performances and we've gotten more and more consistent even though we've got young guys playing in a lot of spots, especially on defense. We're playing pretty close to the same level week in and week out."

(on not getting complacent) 

"That's the toughest part, to fall into the routine, and we don't change a lot of things. Doing the same things day in and day out, preparing the same way and doing that with good emotion and good energy even though it is the same thing is hard. They've come out and taken everything the way it's supposed to be and I think that's why we're playing well."

(on the leadership of the team)

"We have very good leadership all the way across the board. Offensively we have a lot of guys who are perfectionists and they love to practice and that sets a good tone for the whole team. Defensively we are very young, but our young guys are from good college defenses and winning programs and they're used to doing things the right way. We got people like –DT Montae Reagor, DB-Nick Harper and DT-Corey Simon, they've been good for our defensive guys. We've got some veteran guys, some rock solid guys, on special teams. Everywhere along the line we've got guys that set the tempo in not only how to practice because that is the easy part of it , but how to prepare and be into the meetings every day and watch the tapes and know what's going on and mentally prepare. We have great veterans in that regard."

(on Edgerrin James)

"He's playing tremendous football. He's making runs for us, dictating the tempo, he's picking up blitzes, he's making catches in the screen game and dump offs and setting the tempo with the running game. I think it is easy to take it for granted, much like we got to the point with Peyton [Manning] last year, where you say ho-hum 300 yards 4 touchdowns, that's not easy to do. Getting 120, 130, 140 yards week in and week out is not easy, but he is doing it in his style kind of making it look routine."

(on if they're better at home)

"Well I just think we're playing better all the way across the board, but we've certainly built our team to play in the dome. I think we're faster on defense, we've always been fast on offense way before I got here, but I think we've got a team that can play in this condition. The home fans have become a much bigger edge. We have a noisy place and a lot of excitement and raucous. That certainly helps our guys feed off that. So I think it's a matter of maybe our defense is becoming a little bit faster, but I think our record is better on the road than at home since I've been here."

(on if home-field is overstated)

"I think home field is overstated, but that first round bye is a big advantage. It's like winning a playoff game without having to play it. Any time you can do that, that's huge. Then you play a team the next week that's had to go somewhere and play and play a tough game and get beat up while you're kind of waiting on them. That's a big advantage and the fact that you only have to win two to get to the Super Bowl instead of three, you like those odds."

(on the importance of the Cincinnati game)

"That's the way it is and obviously there is a lot at stake because these guys are leading their division and they're chasing you and it's a playoff advantage. But as far as whether those first games didn't mean as much, that's not the way we look at it. We try to take them all the same."

(on the Cincinnati Bengals)

"They're very good on offense. We've played some good offenses, but these guys are explosive. They've got outside receivers that can make plays, a strong runner and their quarterback's playing really well. They're putting up points against everybody, so it will be a test."

(on WR-Chad Johnson)

"Chad's a great receiver, a fun player to play against because he makes the game fun. He'll be a test for us. He can get deep, he can catch the ball and run after the catch and he can make tough catches, so it will be a big test for our corners. He enjoys the game and he is trying to entertain. We had him in the Pro Bowl for a week, and he's a great young man. He sees himself as an entertainer and that's not all bad."

(on the Cincinnati Bengals takeaways on defense)

"Yes, I am envious. They have guys that can catch the football on defense, they're hitting very well, they're coming up with fumbles and that's one thing that we're going to stress is that you have to take care of the ball against these guys, because if you're not really sound and not on it, they have a great ability to take it away. They're playing very aggressively right now. When the ball is in the air, they think it's theirs."

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