Opening Statement: This league is all about finishing, so today is a great example. Let’s give New York a lot of credit, too – they took this as far as it can go and we had to battle with everything we could to come back. We kind of got set off there in the third quarter – had a pivotal sack, a forced fumble, and it ended up being like a twelve-play, 90-yard touchdown drive right after that to give us a chance to get right back into the game. I couldn’t be more proud in terms of the effort and the finish. Every time you go through those, you get a little tougher, you get a little more confident, so it’s great for our mindset knowing that’s such an important part of our program and what we do and had that happen today. With that, I’ll open it up to some questions regarding the game.
Can you talk about the significance of starting 2-0? It’s a long season, but that start has got to be significant.
Yea, each week we’re just going to battle as hard as we can. We won’t look too far ahead and not really to what happened in the past – we’re just going to try and stay in the present moment as long as we can and continue to battle for it every week. Our whole goal is to see how good we can get every week. Keep improving, keep fighting for it, keep chasing, keep getting better. We got better than when we went to practice this week and we performed better in some areas this week and we’ll go right back into it and do that again and keep fighting for it to see how much we can improve, even if it’s by small increments each week.
Can you talk about [Matt] Ryan and [Julio] Jones, and how that dynamic works?
I don’t know if we have enough time in the presser to talk about those two. Just the mindset, the battle, to keep going for it – right, when you’re down there with them and you’re right in the heat of it, they’re just such great competitors, and when you are that way, these are the kind of moments you just love being a part of. I had no doubt we were going down, then took a big shot to Ju[lio] and they pressured, and no doubt sometimes right before the play goes “you got him,” and sure enough he did.
Coach, how special is this win for you as a head coach back in your home state?
Well it’s always great to be back with family and friends, but most importantly, it’s about the team. For me to be a part of it with these guys and go through this journey with them, it’s been a blast. Every time we get a chance to battle and go for it together, we’re going to. So, more importantly, it’s just being in that locker room with those guys and understanding how hard we want to fight for one another.
Did you have a lot of family and friends here today?
Yea, we did. There was a big group, which is always the case back here. I grew up here, so that’s kind of where my first love of football began, so I have a lot of respect for the area, for the people around here, but like I said, as you’re really a part of this team, that’s where the connection starts.
How much did this area kind of cultivate you into the person you are right now?
I think there’s a lot of people where I grew up in the town that look after you, and that’s kind of where the love of ball began – youth coaches, high school coaches, and certainly watching ball in this area growing up, but like I said, it was awesome to be here with our team.
Is it different to win here because of the history you have with the state?
Not necessarily. It’s just that honestly, when you’re in it, you’re just battling as hard as you can. They’ve got a terrific team and this organization – what it stands for through the years – we knew it was going to be hard as heck for us to come up here and get a win and fight for it, so I’m thrilled we were able to do that.
Coach, how much was this a game of ‘one play can really spark you’ with Kroy [Biermann]?
Well, we never know who is going to be the one to set it off. I think today it was Kroy [Biermann] with the one that just got it right back to go fight for us and give us a chance. Having the sack and the forced fumble, I think that was the one that ignited us. It was really a tough go defensively – they were moving the ball and had a couple big plays on us and they’ve got some terrific guys. We had our hands full, I think the whole time, and we had a big play for a touchdown to [Odell, Jr.]Beckham, and came back. It was going to be hard; we knew it the whole time. He’s a terrific competitor, too.
Dan Quinn Sunday postgame
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