Dungy: We're Going To Have To Bounce Back

Tony Dungy talked to the media about the Colts' loss to Green Bay on Sunday. See what coach said about the team's poor performance, the up-and-down nature of the season so far, the amount of penalties the team has been called for, preparing for undefeated Tennessee, and more inside!

"Looking at our game and our last three weeks, I guess, it's probably very similar, just up and down, some good things but not consistent enough. Watching the tape, that's where we were. The penalties, obviously, were a big part of it, some little errors that you can't afford to make against a good football team that's playing well, and we basically shot ourselves in the foot. We're going to have to bounce back from that. We're going to Tennessee this week. Tennessee is playing as well as any team that I've seen in the NFL, so we can't have a repeat-type performance. We have to improve and get better. That's something that we're not used to around here, playing so up and down. I've been with some teams in the past, not here but some of the teams I had in Tampa, we had this type of problem early in the year. We just have to practice through it, work to get it corrected and move forward and play much better in the middle of the year and the second half of the year than we have at the beginning."

On how big of a priority addressing the penalties will be:

"Probably number one, right now. You just can't afford to give good teams second chances. You can't afford to make yourself go longer than you have to to score, and that's what we've done the last two weeks. We have always been a team that's prided ourselves in not getting penalties. We work on it. We believe that if you use the proper techniques, you won't get the penalties. We've gotten 22 in the last two weeks, and you're not going to win many games that way."

On how he will approach the penalty situation:

"It would be one thing if it was our young guys or our rookies getting those penalties, but it's everyone. Some of the pre-snap penalties, the false starts and the offsides on defense, those things are just concentration we have to work on. Then, there are some technique things where you just have to have your hands in the right place and do things the right way. It's basic, fundamental, training-camp football."

On if the unnecessary roughness penalties are frustrating:

"We've had a few of those and some of those, (DB) Jamie Silva gets one on the first kickoff return. The ball goes out of bounds, he can't hear the whistle and he just blocks his guy. There were other people blocking at the same time, too, he just happened to knock his guy down. Some of those, they happen and you want them not to happen but you can live with them. But, the automatic first down holding penalties, hands to the face, those kinds of things, that's what we have to eliminate."

On if a team should know its identity by week six:

"You should, and that's always your hope, that you're clicking into high gear and you're doing things exactly right all the time, and this year we haven't. Usually, by this time of year, we're playing pretty solid football but we've been up and down. We have good quarters or good drives, but we haven't had the continued improvement and playing better every week that we need to have. We just have to practice well, practice hard, practice sharp and hopefully we develop that."

On if that is something he could blame on injuries:

"No, it really isn't. We've played games in the past with eight or nine starters out. It doesn't seem to affect you when you're playing good football. When you aren't playing well, everything affects you, whether it's the field, the officials, any little thing that goes wrong seems to be a catastrophe when you're not playing well."

On what the identity of this team is:

"Right now, we're 3-3. We're a team that wins one, loses one, plays well part of the time, not well part of the time and we're just not a consistent football team right now. We have the makings of a good team. We have enough individual components to be very good, but right now we're not clicking on all cylinders."

On the onside kick out of bounds rule:

"We'll call that the ‘(former Pittsburgh coach) Bill Cowher Rule.' Bill was the one who lobbied long and hard that you should be able to try surprise onside kicks without a real severe penalty of losing the ball. If the other team got the ball, no one would try a surprise onside kick and it would take a real exciting play out of the game. A few years ago, they said if the ball didn't go 20 yards, if it was a legitimate onside-kick try, the kicking team could kick off again as long as it wasn't in the last five minutes. So, you can try surprise onside kicks and if they go haywire it's a penalty. You re-kick."

On if QB-Peyton Manning is 100 percent physically:

"I think so, yes. I think so at this point."

On why Manning has struggled this season:

"I don't know that it's just him. I think it's our whole team. Most players, including Peyton, reflect what's going on around them. He's played great for us at times in the past and it seemed like he's been able to carry the whole team, but that's never really the case. When we're all functioning well, that's when we play our best. We put a lot of pressure on our offense by not taking care of business on defense, by getting bad field position with special-teams penalties, falling behind — it's hard to play from 10 points down, 13 points down all the time on offense — and I think that's what has happened. We have a lot of guys trying a little too hard, trying to make things happen and having to play one dimensionally. We have to play better all the way around, offense, defense and special teams, and I think we'll see what some of our individual guys can do."

On if opposing defenses are not respecting the offense:

"Maybe it's not respecting our deep ball, I don't know, but Green Bay played the way they have always played for the last five years. We played against this coaching staff and this style at Miami and it was the same thing. They're going to play bump and run, they're going to play you up tight, try to be very physical at the line of scrimmage and that's the way they've always played. They didn't really change. We've had some other teams that played us a little differently and that was a little surprising. Baltimore played us that way and we got 31 points pretty quick. It's just a matter of us playing well I think."

On if he had second thoughts about punting on 4th-and-1 in the 2nd quarter:

"Everybody wants you to go for it on 4th down. When you go for it in your own territory early in the game, you either have a play that you really feel like is going to work and you are very confident you are going to make it, or you have a sense of desperation. Had I known that we'd kick the ball down at their 10 and they would keep it eight minutes and score a touchdown, we probably would have gone for it. But, I didn't expect that to happen. I had confidence that we could get them stopped and get the ball back. It all works together. In hindsight, the way the game went, I would have liked to have gone for it, but I don't really second guess."

On if he can use this as an advantage going to Tennessee:

"We'll find out. I thought we had that real good concentration two weeks ago, and we're going to need that. I think our players will watch the tape and they will see how well Tennessee is playing. I think we'll know that if we don't win this game, we really won't have a chance to win the division I don't think ... So, we should have ourselves ready to play our best game of the year, for sure."

On 3-3 teams leading the wild-card chase:

"What we have to do is start playing better. I've, unfortunately, been in this position a few times. When we started playing better we were able to run off some wins. I think we were 3-4 one year in Tampa and we won a bunch straight and ended up winning our division and going to the NFC Championship, but that hinges on playing well in November and December. That's what we have to do. If we get ourselves ready to play, and we start playing the way we can, I think we'll be in there at the end."

On if NFC teams are getting better compared to the AFC:

"I never thought that they were bad, or weren't good, or that the AFC had a market on winning football. Every week is a little different. The Giants go into Cleveland and can't win. Dallas, who was supposed to be the best team in the league, or most talented, they've had struggles. I think that what you're seeing is inconsistent football in a lot of areas. I don't know if it goes back to training camp and how we did things with the 80-man rosters, I'm not sure, but there seems to be more inconsistent football right now than there normally is in October, and we're the leaders."

On DB-Tim Jennings playing inconsistently:

"That is life in the NFL, especially out on the corner. That's one of the things that we have to strive to be more consistent. Tim had an outstanding game against Baltimore and then had four penalties in this (Green Bay) game that really hurt us."

On if CBs need to remember mistakes to correct them:

"You do. Tim's were really technique things. He doesn't have the reputation that (Green Bay CB) Charles Woodson has, so he can't use his hands quite like that. He has to use his hands the way normal defensive backs use them."

On the last time he was in this situation:

"It probably would have been 1999, 2000, 2001, in there, with Tampa. We had some slow starts and we were always trying to figure out how we could play consistently. It was the same situation. We would have good days and then follow those up with some not good ones. What it comes down to is working your way through it and not panicking and getting that sense of urgency without panicking."

On if the team will approach this week like every other week:

"Yes, we will. We're going to give the players off (Tuesday) and Wednesday, come in on Thursday and we'll look at the tape of Tennessee, try to figure out the best way to attack them but really look at ourselves and try to get ourselves doing things better and more sound."

On if he considered a bye-week style practice on Wednesday:

"No. I think we just have to really prepare like we normally would."

On if he is sure what he's going to get every Sunday:

"We're not right now. The first six weeks have been that way, and that is a little unusual for us. We could always count on a certain type of performance. We weren't necessarily always going to win, but you always felt good about how we were going to play. I've been as surprised as anyone at the penalties and some of the inconsistencies. Again, it's just technique and doing things right all the time."

On if a bad loss can linger:

"That's really hard to say. You always feel badly and I think you go back on Monday and try to evaluate it, look at the tape and then you have to try to press on and move forward. I think, for the most part, our players do that."

On how he gets a sense of urgency across to the team:

"What we have to do is really concentrate on being sharp in everything we do — preparation, meetings, drill work, practice time. That's what happens. I think, in terms of going out there wanting to play hard, wanting to do all that knowing what's on the line, we'll have that. But, you can go out there and play hard and if you get penalties on third down that create automatic first downs, if you get kicks blocked, if you throw interceptions for touchdowns, all the hard work and all the effort doesn't overcome those fundamental problems and detail problems. That's where we are right now."

On the blocked field goal:

"That was just a guy really pushing inside and got penetration in the center-guard gap and got his hands up. He got too much penetration. It happened at a time when we couldn't afford it."

On if the coaches show players their penalties on tape:

"Oh, absolutely, yes. We look at what causes it and what we can do and what we should do to avoid it. Most of the time it is a technique problem. Sometimes, like in Jamie (Silva's) case, I don't know that there's much he can do. (Another time) (DB) Marlin Jackson is laying out, diving and the guy just hits the ground before he gets there and it's a penalty. It's hard to say, ‘Don't be as aggressive, don't lay out, don't try to tackle.' That's what we do. There are some that you really can't help, but there are others that can be helped."

On if Manning is having more passes batted down at the line of scrimmage this season:

"Most guys that bat a lot of passes aren't great pass rushers and that's what happens sometimes. We throw a lot of quick passes and we have people that don't really come after us, they concentrate on that. We get some. I don't know that we've had any more than in the past. Most of the time it is from linemen who aren't really close to the quarterback, they have a chance to bat those down. That's just something that happens sometimes."

On if his demeanor helps players stay calm:

"We hope so. There are always suggestions, always different ways you can do things, but what we want them to do is just look at what we're doing, look at the problems that we've caused ourselves, see if we can eliminate those and not beat ourselves. That's really the first step towards coming out of it. If we can do the things that we need to do to win, but avoid those things that cause you to lose, then you're halfway home."


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