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Perry Fewell, 09.23.10

Q: In retrospect, was your plan to stop the passing game against the Colts the right plan? How surprised were you at how much they ran the ball?
A: Surprised that they were able to run the ball. Obviously, that was the better team last week and they had a good plan and they were just a better football team on Sunday than we were.

Q: You go from facing probably the best quarterback in the league to the best running back in the league. Do you want to be as proactive as you were against the pass in the run this week?
A: You've got to stop the run. You have to stop the run against this guy. This guy is very good. It's a two-headed monster because Vince Young is very good, the way he runs the ball, so the running attack is very, very strong and you have to defend the pass, no doubt.

Q: Do you have to hedge it a little bit and emphasize the run?
A: You have to stop the run. You have to stop the run and we can defend the pass. With what we're going to do and how we're going to approach these guys, we can defend the run. We can defend both the run and the pass. We have to do a great job Sunday of tackling and we have to do a good job of making sure that we close the gaps, that there are no seams in our defense, because this guy, he's a really good north and south runner. With all that speed he has, he's able to put his toe in the turf and go north and south and he's able to make yards that way so we definitely have to be very disciplined in what we do and how we do it with run and pass.

Q: Do you have to prepare your guys for the possibility that they go to Kerry Collins again this week?
A: Yeah, last week, as you watched the ball game, Kerry came in and they were down by two scores and it became a real pass attack. Kerry really has a good arm. Throws the seam ball extremely well. I've got a lot of respect for how he can flame that football so if that does happen, yes, you have to have a plan of attack for that also.

Q: Can you talk a little bit about the responsibility that Jonathan Goff has in the scheme of this defense?
A: He's an extension of what we're trying to do and he communicates to the defense and makes all of the adjustments of what we're trying to do out there so his mental makeup and his ability to think like we think is key and important for us. We give him a lot of checks and a lot of things to go over from a scheme standpoint and he's able to handle that information as well as, when the ball is snapped, make a decision within a second that you have to try to tackle a ball carrier. So, I think he has been progressing extremely well in what we've been doing.

Q: Why did you like Jonathan in the middle?
A: Sometimes you have to let your gut instinct take over and when he was in there calling the huddle and when the defensive guys looked at him, they looked at him as the leader and Jonathan was the guy that they said, hey give me something Jonathan and he would get them pumped up and he would get them ready to go. I just think that his overall play and how he progressed in camp, those things took over. You're looking out there and you're seeing that the chemistry is good with Jonathan in there and I think that that's probably the overriding factor.

Q: Do you anticipate playing three safeties on the field at the same time throughout the season and do you want them to play as high as they did last week this week?
A: Each week that could change. What we're trying to do with our personnel is - we've got good personnel - we try to use our personnel to the best of our ability and try to attack a team and match up with a team as in the case last week. We thought that the matchups were good with that football team using the three safety package. It might not be as good this week because of what this team presents, et cetera, so we try to look at it and evaluate it each week and see where we can gain the advantage defensively with our personnel.

Q: How disappointed were you last week and what did you learn about your defense when it could not stop the run?
A: I still think that we can stop the run with six in the box. I learned that we weren't as sharp as we should have been and that our run fits with the two backers that we had in the football game at that point in time, that we have to concentrate more on that, that if there was an emphasis that should have been tilted one way or the other...hindsight is 20/20, but you took a team that for 13 years, they've thrown the football every down. Every year I've played them they've thrown the football every down. And they had a good plan of attack, so, again, just using our personnel and doing what we like to do, we should have and we could have done a better job.

Q: What does Linval Joseph need to do to be on that 45 on game day?
A: That's a tough question because he makes progress every day in practice and he's playing and competing against some guys that have really good experience in Canty and Barry Cofield as well as Rocky Bernard, so I mean, you can only dress 45 and you have to make that decision one way or another. I think he just has to keep pressing, keep working. He is getting better as a football player, but that's always a tough number when you only have 45 guys to dress on game day.

Q: Have you had a chance to speak with Antrel about his comments on the radio this week?
A: I don't know what these comments are...no I haven't had a chance to talk to him about that.

Q: Do you have to flip a switch from preparing for Peyton to prepare for Chris Johnson?
A: Yeah. It's the polar opposite. But Peyton...his head spun around on the ball last week so I don't know if Chris Johnson can throw the football. I don't know if that will happen this week, but yeah, they're polar opposites and Chris is obviously an excellent running back and so we've got to do a great job in stopping the running game.

Q: Is there anything blueprint-wise you can take from the Steelers game?
A: How physical they played. That was one of the most physical football games that I have seen this year. Pittsburgh, no matter what, they had a great mentality when they went in the football game. They were not going to be denied. It was a bloodbath on both sides of the football, so the mentality that we have to take in the football game is that no matter what, we have to have that physical mentality and not be denied.

Q: Is that a style that you guys can win?
A: Oh yeah. We can win like that if we go into this football game with that mentality.

Q: Is Vince a guy who is almost more dangerous outside of the pocket?
A: Yeah. We'd love to keep Vince in the pocket. No doubt about it, because in some of the tapes we've been reviewing et cetera, sometimes he comes out of the pocket, he almost pulls a hamstring he's running so fast. We definitely need to build a wall around him, cup him, and try to keep him in the pocket.

Q: Is Keith still evolving into the role on your defense? Does he have something to prove going against his old team this week?
A: I think Keith fits in very well this week. He's on edge this week because obviously if you've worked somewhere for nine or ten years and now you have a chance to compete against that opponent, you want to win badly, you as a man and as a football player, you have something to prove, so I think that he will come out. He has a role, he has a significant role in our defense this week, and he'll come out and he'll play good football. He'll want to play good football.

Q: Is there a process you have to go through mentally to adjust from being in the middle to be on the outside?
A: I think that there's a little bit of a mental adjustment but when you're a man of his caliber and have played as long as he's played and you've played both, I think he can handle that and he handles it well. Again, Keith is a football player and, unlike some guys, Keith just wants to be on the field. He wants to contribute, whether he's on the outside or the inside, he's a guy who can make that adjustment and do that. We're fortunate to have that guy.