Dungy: There Was A Lot To Be Happy About

Tony Dungy took a few minutes to update the media Monday before the team takes its scheduled day off on Tuesday. See what Dungy had to say about Sunday's game, the return of LB Tyjaun Halger and OG Ryan Lilja, the sunshine at Lucas Oil Stadium, Peyton Manning's second knee surgery, the approaching trading deadline, and more!

"Looking at our game, it's kind of the reverse of the last couple of weeks. You look at it, and you're happy you won. We did some good things to put 31 points on the board, but there are still some things we have to work on, still some areas we have to get cleaned up, especially the penalties. We weren't happy with that. In a tight game, those types of penalties can really come back to hurt you. We have to look at clearing some things up and try to continue to get a little bit better, but it was good to see our offense get on track early against a very, very tough defense. I thought our run defense early in the game was stout and helped us get on track. We got the takeaways that we'd been looking for and hadn't gotten the first few weeks. Our special teams, I thought, kicked well and covered well. There was a lot to be happy about, and now we just have to try to tighten up some of those fine points."

On if he added anything vs. Baltimore:

"No, we were just a little bit sharper on offense and we hit a couple of the deep balls that we had just been missing. That made a big difference. Defensively, I thought we played faster. We weren't as hesitant and we pulled the trigger a little bit faster with our linebackers and secondary. Once we get the lead, it becomes a lot easier to play."

On if conditioning could be a factor in LB-Tyjuan Hagler's and OG-Ryan Lilja's returns from PUP:

"No, they've done a lot of conditioning work. I think, from that standpoint, they'll be OK."

On Hagler's return:

"Tyjuan's been a good player for us. We got very, very good play (Sunday) from all of the (linebacker) group. But, it never hurts you to have more good players out there."

On playing at Lambeau Field:

"Lambeau will be exciting for a lot of our guys. We have some young people that haven't played up there before. It's a different environment, it's a great atmosphere to play in, there's a lot of history there and I think our guys will be excited to go."

On playing defense with an early lead:

"When we're putting points on the board, that obviously helps. (Baltimore) was a team that had been averaging 41 runs a game, and that's the way they wanted to play – close to the vest, rely on their defense and play field position. All of a sudden, you get up two scores and it makes them play a different game, so that does help us. But, we have to be able to play whatever style the game ends up being. We have to be able to stop people from running the ball. You're not always going to be three touchdowns ahead."

On the defense attacking with a lead:

"Anybody would like to play when they're ahead and the other team is one-dimensional. That's when you have fun. It's not just us, it's any defense. I watched San Diego (Sunday) night, and when they got up on New England, they looked like they were having fun."

On forcing eight turnovers in the past 65 minutes:

"Maybe things are averaging out. We went a long time without getting any. We feel like we can stress that and get it done and that we have takeaway players and we weren't getting them. That was one of those things; the field position was tough on us in the first four games. We made Baltimore start a lot of drives inside their 25-yard line. We got the ball for our offense in the midfield area. That helps you, definitely. I wish I knew why. I thought we hustled. We played faster (Sunday), for whatever reason. Usually, when you're playing faster and playing better, you get those takeaways."

n QB-Peyton Manning's timing returning:

"I started to see it come after the bye. We had some routine practices. We weren't game planning, we weren't dialing up plays against another team's defense, we were just out there practicing. I thought we got a little sharper over the bye, made some progress against Houston and every week have been a little bit sharper on offense. Having a number of guys playing together is probably the reason for it, including Peyton."

On if Manning is more comfortable now:

"It's probably a combination of everything, throwing more balls to these guys, being more comfortable and just feeling in sync."

On the sun shining on the Colts' sideline:

"The sun on the sideline was different. It was much like being at an away game. We haven't had to face that too much. It was warm in the sunlight, but I think our guys enjoyed it. Talking to the few fans that I did talk to after the game, I think they enjoyed it. I thought it was good."

On the decision to open the roof:

"My thought process has always been, if it's a nice day, have it open. The one thing we do have to be concerned about is the threat of rain because we don't have any drainage. I don't know who makes that decision. I'm assuming (owner) Jim Irsay, but for the most part we would love to have it open when it would be comfortable."

On the stadium not mattering when the team plays well:

"It really doesn't, whether you're home or away, open or closed. When you're playing well and making things happen, you're going to win. When you're playing well, fans are going to enjoy it. Whether (the game) was indoors or outdoors, I think most people would have come away feeling good."

On RB-Dominic Rhodes:

"All running backs want that situation. He practices that way. He has himself ready to go. We didn't have any doubt that he was going to play well. It's just a nervous feeling when you only have one back for three quarters of the game. He brings a lot of energy and I think he gets other guys excited to play, so it was great to see him have a good day."

On if Manning's second knee surgery set him back:

"I don't think it set him back. It was part of the whole rehab process. I don't know exactly what they did in that second surgery, but the time-frame that we were looking at was pretty much when he came back. As far as setting him back or having something going and then having a relapse, we didn't detect any of that."

On if a move is possible before Tuesday's trading deadline:

"We'll ask about some people – Jim Brown, Barry Sanders. I have a number for Barry, but I don't know if it's still a good one. We'll look into it, but again, if it's not someone who really knows what we're doing, we're probably better off going to guys who have been with us."


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