Tony Dungy Reflects on the Tampa 2

Colts head coach Tony Dungy reflected on the development of the Tampa 2 defense and talked about a number of his star players and the Titans this week in response to questions from the media.

On a division road stretch that struck him from the start:
"We knew it was going to be important to win the home games that we had early in the season, and we're going on this road trip so-to-speak at the end of the year. It's always tough going into someone else's building and trying to win a game in December. The Giants found that out last week, and we have to be ready for the same thing."

On DB-Nick Harper playing well the last couple of years:
"He really has. He's been probably our most consistent player. Last week, he played without a lot of practice time and did some really good things out there. So, yes, he's done a very good job for us the last two-and-a-half years, really."

On WR Ricky Proehl:
"I think Ricky will make an impact for us. He's a veteran guy that has played in a lot of stretch runs. He's played in Super Bowls and made impact plays. He's got to learn what we do, but we do feel like he can help us, especially as a slot receiver."

On RB Joseph Addai:
"Joseph is doing well, and I think we've done a good job of managing his workload and keeping him fresh. He had about 24 carries (against the Eagles), which was a lot for him, but he felt good and I think he still feels fresh coming into December."

On former Titans LB Rocky Boiman:
"Rocky did get a start. He played well for us. He played a very good game, has a chance to start for us this week. Gilbert Gardner is still nursing some sore ribs. Gilbert's going to practice today, but if he's not 100 percent Rocky will start. He's doing very well."

On deciding to keep WR Reggie Wayne:
Reggie's a very good player number one. Every year since I've been here he's put up bigger numbers and gotten to be a better player. We felt he still had a number of years to continue to improve. The timing in our passing game is such that for a guy to come in and really be a dominant player in the system, it's going to take a couple of years. It took Reggie three years to really become the receiver we thought he was going to be. It was important to keep that nucleus intact, he and Marvin (Harrison), Dallas Clark, Ben Utecht and Bryan Fletcher and (Brandon) Stokely. We wanted to keep them if we could. It took a very big commitment to keep Reggie, but we're very happy we did.

On Harrison and Wayne being the number one and two receivers or both of them being number one:
"We don't really have a situation where it's one or two or three. I think the year we had a couple of years ago where they each put up 1,000 yards and 10 touchdowns and they each had big games. We really look at it depending on how the team plays us. All three of those guys can be the number one receiver if the team that we play dictates it that way."

On if there's the potential for Young to be confused by the Colts' defensive changeups:
"I don't think it's a big deal. I don't think he would look at it that way. What you're looking at is, ‘Hey, here's a game against a playoff-caliber team and we're playing them at home and we've got a chance to beat them. I'm going to have to play well for us to win.' I think that's the way he's going to look at every game from here on out that for his team to win he's got to play well, and it doesn't matter who it is or where it is. I think he's really going to look at it just like he looked at every game at Texas."

On his role in the development of the Tampa-two defense and if he thinks it will continue to be used:
"I don't think schemes come in and out. They don't become obsolete. The West Coast offense is still en vogue and most of that really developed from Paul Brown in the 40's and 50's. You can say people caught up with it or it went and out , but it's really the people you have executing. If you have a fundamental philosophy of how you're going to play, that system will play for 100 years if you have good players that understand it and play well. I think it's more about whose playing that what the system is.

On if he takes pride in seeing other teams copy his work:
"I guess if I'd thought I had anything to do with developing it I might, but it really as I say is something that happened in the 70's and I learned it as a player. I take a little pride in the coaches that have left there, Monte Kiffin, Lovie Smith, Rob Marinelli, Herm Edwards and Mike Tomlin having success, just knowing that you picked some very, very good people and they went on to have some success. But as far as the scheme itself, that's really Bud Carson, Chuck Knoll and Woody Widenhofer 35 years ago."

On if he feels guilty that it was labeled the Tampa 2:
"Well, I guess that's the media of our day. As I said, the West Coast offense started in Cleveland, Ohio. Bill Walsh took it to Cincinnati and played it in Cincinnati the whole time I was with the Steelers, and it somehow became the West Coast offense from Cleveland, Ohio. That happens. I think those players in Tampa deserve some credit for putting it on the map and making it something that the nation took notice of. It's really the Pittsburgh system in my opinion."

On QB-Vince Young's development:
"They're doing more things that he's comfortable with. He looks like he's playing a little looser, just letting it flow more. I think the last 10 minutes of the Giants game where they just had to make some plays to win, you saw what you saw in the Rose Bowl, where he just did things to win the game. Travis Henry has been a big boost for them. He's running hard and breaking tackles. He broke a lot of tackles in our game. So, they're playing better. Defensively, their young guys, Pacman Jones is starting to make plays, some of the guys that they drafted. (Albert) Haynesworth is back, which gives them another shot in the arm that they didn't have in our game. So, it's going to be a different team."

On Vince Young's playmaking abilities:
"It's tough. He made some plays on fourth down against the Giants that a normal quarterback, the game's probably over. But he was able to keep the plays alive and that's the difficult part of it, that you have to defend everything and then hope to make a play on him if he does keep it alive."

On if the Titans' comeback win against the Giants can be a catalyst for the team:
"Oh sure it can. I think it does something for any team. We had that situation down in Tampa a couple of years ago, and it just made us feel like we could win anywhere and anytime, it didn't really matter what the situation was. It really helped us. These guys are playing very well. Since they left us, I think they've won four out of six. They're playing with a lot more confidence. I think some of their young players that they drafted have started to make those plays that they envisioned them making. They have played very, very good football the last six weeks."

On if he talks about the nuances of officiating crews with the team when preparing for games:
"We do talk about it a little bit, but basically what we talk about is not committing penalties. If you don't commit penalties then you don't have to worry about what crew you have. That's the way we like to try to approach it. Some guys are going to call certain things and watch certain things. But more than anything else, if you have your fundamentals down and you don't commit fouls, you really don't have to worry about it."

On if Peyton Manning is conscious of officiating crews:
"Yes, probably so. There are some little nuances. There are crews that call a lot of things. There are crews that don't call some things. You like to be aware of that. For most players, I'd say 99 percent of the players, it doesn't really come into play."


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