I thought there were probably three plays that I didn't talk about - I guess maybe I talked about one of them, but I want to review with you the importance of three different plays. One was their second offensive play after the long run which was a gadget attempt that they had been very successful with over the years with Randle El throwing the ball on the reverse pass; Cooley being a guy that they had thrown the ball to in the past. They were also trying to clear and hit the deep one if it was there to Moss. And I thought we defended that very, very well. As a matter of fact, we defended it in a way -- most of the time Randle El was - even if he was boxed in, would maneuver around and find a way to throw the ball down the field for a completion. In this case we had him boxed in but we also made the tackle on him for a loss, which I think gave us the down and distance circumstances that we wanted, which was a big play. The second one was the fumbled snap that was in our territory - minus territory - and Richie Seubert went out and got the ball back for us. Actually we gained yardage on the play. And of course in that drive, the drive was allowed to continue to go forward because of that particular play. And I thought the third one was what we talked about last night with our hands team going on the field, doing a very good job of blocking their people coming down. I thought the kick was an exceptional kick, very high; one of those ones that you wonder if it is ever going to come down prior to their people being in position. And of course we got the blocks we needed enough and made the play - Steve Smith made the play to allow us to run one and kneel on the ball. So those were the kinds of things that maybe didn't get discussed or even if you did, they were very important plays, obviously, as the outcome of the game provided.
Q: RE: Injuries to Hakeem Nicks and Danny Ware?
A: The only thing I can tell you is that both of them - it has been indicated by the medical people that they are probably two weeks and then after that it is week to week. That is all that I can tell you.
Q: Have you ruled out a Lisfranc for Nicks?
A: That is my understanding, yeah.
Q: Were there any other injuries?
A: No, but we will wait and see for Wednesday.
Q: Are you going to have to bring up another running back?
A: We are going to have to discuss it, no doubt.
Q: RE: loss of Nicks being a blow to his development
A: Well, let's face it, anytime you take a player out, it doesn't help. And the big thing there would be because he is so young, the opportunity to continue to be in the game situations and the practices with regard to a game and those types of things - the learning experience, the continuity, the communication between he and the quarterback - all of those things would go forward and they are going to have to be temporarily shut down.
Q: Is Ramses Barden far enough ahead in his development?
A: Well, we'll see. There are certainly things that you, I believe, emphasize when he is in the picture. And we did keep seven receivers so we do have some flexibility there as well.
Q: RE: High draft picks (receivers) getting hurt.
A: (no response)
Q: Is Michael Boley ready to start with the team stuff?
A: You know what, I have to wait and see what the medical people are going to say about that. We had thought that when he came back he would be ready to practice as soon as the suspension was over. But I really haven't spent a lot of time this morning talking about that. I'll have to get some information from the trainers on that.
Q: Is Michael Boley activated on Wednesday?
A: I don't know exactly what it is. He is cleared to be a part of our practices this week.
Q: After you looked at the tape, how close were you to putting points on the board?
A: Well, we obviously feel that way no matter what. And I told the players that. The effort was good, there are just things that we have to clean up and be able to take advantage of. We have to put the ball in the end zone when it is fourth and one. We have to convert the two third and one's. We only had four penalties, five actually called. The one was negated. But still there are penalties that can negate a drive or knock you out of the field position that you need for a touchdown -- so all of those things. There were times in the game when I felt we were going to score more points. There were other times in the second half when I didn't think we were as aggressive - and by that, I don't mean playcalling - I just mean on the field we weren't as aggressive as we perhaps should have been or could have been. So there were chances. I'm always going to say that we could have done a better job with that. Anytime you are 0-3 in the green zone, obviously you need to get touchdowns instead of field goals. And so we continue to make that a matter of emphasis.
Q: What do you think of the rotation of the defensive line?
A: That worked out good. I thought that worked out very well. Now one of the real keys - obviously, we had the ball for 36 minutes. I think we graded 64 plays - officially 61 on offense; 50 on defense. And so we were able to limit their opportunities. Obviously somebody has to get them off the field, too. But our offense had the ball for quite a bit of time, particularly in the first half. And then that worked out, I thought, well.
Q: When you drafted Ramses Barden you said that you thought he could be a factor in the red zone right away. Would this be an opportunity?
A: Right. Perhaps it would be; perhaps it would be. Obviously with the news today - we have to rethink all of those things - actives, inactives, etc. So that is all coming forward here in the next 48 hours.
Q: Would that also affect the Boley roster spot.
A: Well, you do have to account for that, yes.
Q: RE: Eli rolling right and then throwing to left.
A: Well there are any number of things that I could comment on that one. But it is a two-way go. There was an opportunity to keep the ball front side. The receiver got jammed. The pressure was there. Like you say, he turned and tried to throw the in cut. The ball got tipped. If you had it to do over, he wouldn't do it over. No question. But in that situation, at that point in time, he obviously felt like he had to do that or made the decision to go ahead and try to hit the in cut. It didn't end up in our favor. And thank goodness the defense came up with a sudden change.
Q: RE: the way Bill Sheridan called the game.
A: I thought the pattern, the pressures, and the way in which the coverage was played - I thought all of those things were in tune with the level in which we play strategically.
Q: Do you think it is a big help that everything worked in his (Sheridan's) first game and obviously the players seem to be thrilled with how things worked out.
A: First of all, you win. That is the number one thing. That is the bottom line. Number one is winning the game. And when you win the game you have that kind of reinforcement. And then, as I told the players, "I am your mirror and I'm going to tell you exactly what I see." And the fact that his group of guys has great heart and played with great effort, great enthusiasm, is a big plus, because we can fix some of the things that weren't as well done as you would have liked them to be. And I think defensively there were some real inspired plays, no doubt. I would like to say we could take the last drive away, but we can't. So there is an area right there where we have to do a better job.
Q: Both touchdown drives came late in the halves. Were there things that broke down?
A: Well, definitely. The last drive is the one that really sticks in my craw. And it wasn't the scramble - that particular play. And even the touchdown play. It should have been defended better. And that is what I mean, we have things that we can look at and see and say, "Hey, you know what - we can do this better. We know how to play this better."
Q: On the flip side, was Osi's play as good as you have seen in a long time?
A: Very good football play; exceptional - especially when the same guy comes around and picks it up and goes. You don't see that very often. Sometimes it will be someone else from the other side, but the same guy. That was a very, very --- strategically and statistically you win a high majority of your games when the defense scores.
Q: Eli said he made an adjustment on the Mario Manningham touchdown.
A: He has obviously had to keep up with the quarterback. He has been doing this for a few years. And he knows what he is looking for and made a really intelligent check there to try to take advantage of a situation the defense was giving him. Mario picked it up. And really most of the real effective wide receiver screens that you see - the wall comes out and becomes a part of it. In this case it wasn't quite that way. We had guys coming out there that were in a position to help him once he got started. But he did an awful lot of that one on his own. But yes, it is a positive sign, for sure.
Q: RE: The faked field goal.
A: It was an all-out block.
Q: From that side.
A: As it turned out it was. But that is my call. That is my call. Put that one on me. It is not on the players.
Q: How likely are you to have Ross and Dockery back this week?
A: We are hoping. But these things - I'm too far along to be speculating on that kind of stuff, to be honest with you. We have a day tomorrow where we can take them out and work with them and maybe run them and see what that is going to be like. But until we go on the practice field, until we see those guys work, I'm not going to speculate.
Q: RE: Bruce Johnson's play yesterday.
A: I was proud of him; I really was. He was competitive as heck and he showed me outstanding mental toughness. He may not have realized it but it was a pretty big game. He walked right out there and went right to work - tackled the runner, was in the right place the majority of the time. He did get the holding penalty but....