Dungy: Preparing To Play A Tough Game

Tony Dungy took some time to talk to the media after getting away for the team's bye week over the weekend. Dungy didn't stray far from the football field, however, and is ready to get back to work. See what he had to say as the team begins preparing for AFC South rival Houston.

On his bye weekend:

"I did have a good weekend. It was busy, hectic, but fun. I really got away. I encouraged our players to get away Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, do some things with their families and come back in (Monday) and start to zero in and focus, so that's what I did. I did watch some football, college football, pro football, high school football, so it was fun. I saw it from a fan's perspective and what makes our game great."

On the games he watched:

"I saw some upsets. I saw Southern Cal and Florida get upset and then watched our games. What you see is the teams that really are playing sharp and not beating themselves and minimizing their mistakes and not turning the ball over, that's who's winning. I watched Tennessee (Titans). They have been as impressive as anybody I've seen all year. They're not turning the ball over, they're playing really hard on defense and making it tough for the other team to score and, consequently, they're 4-0. That's what we want to gear into, see if we can get back to playing that way."

On RB Dominic Rhodes:

"Dom(inic) is going to do some great things for us this year. He can run the ball and make things happen. He understands our pass protections and it is great to have that second veteran guy there. What we have to do is get more carries for both of those guys (Rhodes and RB-Joseph Addai) and get him involved a little bit more. That's going to be by our defense doing a better job and by our offense making more first downs and staying on the field. We definitely need to get him involved."

On what made the running game click vs. Jacksonville:

"I think a lot of it was just us being a little bit more fundamentally sharp. Having (C) Jeff (Saturday) in there, I'm sure, helps the communication part of it and playing at home. But really, we have to continue to sharpen up and continue to be better, but it was encouraging to get the running game going."

On DTs Daniel Muir and La Juan Ramsey:

"Last week was a good week for them to be able to just work and start to grasp what we're doing and start to play with their teammates a little bit. We'll have another day like that (Monday) and see if we can get them geared in. They are big bodies and guys we have to get going."

On if the slow start is concerning for the division race:

"I'm not worried about that so much as I am about us. We certainly don't want to go to 1-3. We don't want to have two division losses back-to-back and get behind the eight ball that way. We just have to start playing better. If we get ourselves playing, you can't control how anybody else is and Tennessee is playing great right now, but our concern is more of getting ourselves playing great. Then we will be in good shape."

On if the red zone defense is better because there is less space on the field:

"That's always part of it. We have played a little bit better in the red zone. We've made some stops on third down to force field goals, and that's what we haven't done as well out in the field. As far as what we're calling and how we're playing, it's not a whole, whole lot different, we've just come up with those third-down stops."

On if a road game can pull this team together:

"I think we just need to practice real well and come out and have a good game. We haven't played a sharp, 60-minute game yet this year, and I think we're going to need that to go down and win. I think going on the road, our players will realize that we don't have the home advantage so we have to go prepare to play a tough game and win a tough game on the road."

On if WR Anthony Gonzalez is not getting as many touches because TE Dallas Clark is playing more:

"No, I would say that really comes down to us not having the ball enough. It's partly our defense's fault and partly our offense's fault. If we have 75 plays, Gonzo will get enough looks. (WR) Reggie (Wayne) and (WR) Marvin (Harrison) and (RB) Joseph (Addai) and (RB) Dominic (Rhodes), we have a lot of guys that haven't gotten enough looks the last couple of games. That's part of making first downs and scoring points and stopping the other team. We'll get those guys plenty of looks if we can do that."

On if it helped having a week off after the disappointing loss to Jacksonville:

"No, it's life in the NFL. I think this past week showed that. Some teams that were disappointed bounced back and won. Last week doesn't have to have a bearing on this week unless you allow it to. That's the approach we'll take. We have to be a little bit more determined and make some of those plays and see if we can avoid a last-minute loss, and I'm sure Houston feels the same way."

On the Colts pass rush:

"Our rush has been pretty good. We haven't had a lot of opportunities. We haven't been ahead a lot, and that helps you, too. We just have to keep working at it and see if we can put ourselves in position to rush a little bit more."


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