Jets Postgame Quotes (Week Eleven)
Head Coach Robert Saleh
Can you talk about the second half, especially the offense, seven possessions, only two total yards.
It was dog sh*t.
How do you talk to the team right now? How do you get them through this?
We just got to get back on, we got to show up tomorrow and find ways to get better. That’s it. It’s like I said, whether we won or lost, there’s still seven games to be played. We have the whole season ahead of us. So we’re still right there in the thick of things and we’ve just got to get back on the horse and get ready to play another football game.
There are losses and then there are gut punches, right?
To me, whether we lose by one or a hundred, it doesn’t matter. They’re all gut punches. It’s a loss. Yeah, it’s crappy way to lose. You feel like you’re exchanging blows from a defensive standpoint from both teams and somebody could just make a play and get it to overtime. They made a play and we didn’t.
Can you give us your breakdown on the punt return? It looked like maybe there was a questionable block in the back there that didn’t get called.
I thought Braden [Mann] did a really nice job of punting the ball today. He hung one out in the middle and that’s about it.
We talked to some of the guys in the locker room, specifically on the defensive side of the ball, after the Bills game. They were immediately pointing towards this one wanting a little payback after the way – this week in the locker room kind of saying the same thing. These guys allowed three points and it’s still a loss. Do you worry about this potentially dividing the team?
No, no, not at all. No.
Why was Zach Wilson struggling so much today?
We’ll get to the film room and see. Obviously we all know we weren’t good enough. Whether, as coaches we got to find a way to help him, whether we just got to get back to fundamentals. I wish I had a better answer for you right now. But we’ll do study it hard again.
This isn’t another game where – the passing yards, it’s under 200, the completion percentage, it’s under 60. This one is 40. Is he a quarterback that’s holding the offense back right now?
I don’t know, we couldn’t run the ball either, so there’s a lot of things that we got to look at to see if we can find some efficiency in the offense. Obviously in the second half we just couldn’t get – I don’t feel like we had a first down. I don’t know if we did. But either way it just wasn’t good enough. It’s not about pointing fingers at any one individual or one unit or one anything. It’s just finding a way to, finding the answers so we can start moving the ball because we did it against Buffalo, we’ve done it against other teams. It’s just the consistency needs to get found.
What was the thinking on third and one there before the punt? You kind of had options there. You could run out the clock and play overtime if you get a first down there or try to go for a field goal. You lose yards and have to punt it?
No, for sure. You run the ball, they stuff you, and they’re going to call timeout anyway. In our mind, we had about 30-plus seconds left on the clock. We still had a timeout in hand. Wanted to be aggressive to see if we can get some chunk yardage right there, burn the timeout, see if we can get in field goal range because we still felt like we had an opportunity to go win the football game. It just, it didn’t work out the way we wanted. We wanted to finish the game with the ball. Obviously in a perfect situation, it would have been with the ball and a chance to kick it for, to win it. But it didn’t work out.
Was there any point where you thought you sensed some offensive spark, that something might get going?
In the second half?
At any point? No.
Did you ever consider Mike White at all?
If this, though, continues, if Zach continues to struggle, do you have to go to Mike?
No, that’s the furthest thing on my mind. I’ve told you guys before, Zach’s our quarterback and we’re going to, we’ve got to find ways to help him get better.
What happened to Nate Herbig? And any other injuries coming out of this game?
He just didn’t feel comfortable. The inactives had already come out, they came out in the pregame and it just wasn’t feeling good for him. Hopefully we can get him back next week.
So Michael [Carter] was fine. He came back. And then Echols was, he had stuff come up.
Your special teams has been so good all year. It came up with so many big plays. How disappointing and surprising is it they were the ones in the end that let you down?
Yeah, I think we punted 10 times. They’ve got a, obviously Coach Belichick is, they have got one of the better units through time, and you make one mistake and they will make you pay, and we made a mistake on a punt and we couldn’t get him down.
Did you sense with the way the game was going it’s going to be, someone’s going to make a mistake, whoever blinks here is going to be the one that –
That’s what all these games are. When you’re in a tight game like this and someone either blinks or you’re in overtime and it ends up in a tie or whatever it is, it’s the way both offenses were operating – or both defenses were playing.
What can you say about how the defense played today to keep you guys in it?
I thought defense was outstanding. I thought our D-line got after it. We had some missed tackles in the first half. But the sequence, you know, we had the penalty and then the sack to make it a hard field goal, which towards the end of the half, I thought that was really, really good by the defense. Then we just couldn’t capitalize on their good play.
Can you put your finger on what was going wrong with the running game?
They’re really good up front. They have been one of the top defenses in football over the last six or seven games and they showed why today.
The CBS cameras caught a couple of times – there was one time where Zach went to Mims and was a little off. And Garrett was, seemed like he was vocally saying something to Zach and also throwing his hands up. And Denzel as well when one went a little high. Do you worry at all about frustrations building with the receivers when things aren’t clicking on offense?
In the heat of battle there’s always going to be frustration with one another and trying to talk it out, trying to find a way to get it right. I don’t think it’s indicative of anything else.
Why wasn’t it working for the offense out there today?
I just think all around as far as executing, weren’t able to move the chains. They were doing a good job of making it hard for us to get easy ones in the pass game. Couldn’t establish the run game very well. Then obviously I had some I want back. Got to find a way in these conditions.
What happened on that last pass that you had on that third down? What was the thought process there?
Which one? The one I tried to throw to Mims?
No, the one that you threw at the very end of the game before you guys – the third and one to Carter at the sideline?
We called a play for a guy in a boundary. They gave us a coverage where I couldn’t work it, so I just – the play that we called was, I was trying to get the ball to Conk [Tyler Conklin]. Pretty much they double-teamed him. He came back to look at it that way, so he was trying to go across the board, and tried to find an outlet to somebody to make a play there.
When your defense is playing as well as it is, how frustrating was it to not be able to get anything going?
Yeah, it’s super frustrating. It was a frustrating day, of course. I feel like I had some balls that got away from me. But we got to find ways on offense. We got to do some digging, watch the film, and see what we can do better.
Aside from the first time you played New England, aside from the turnovers, you were able to move the ball up and down the field offensively. Why today – did they dramatically change what they did from the first game to the second game?
No, it was the same. I think you got to take into account it’s windy as hell out there too, guys. There’s times where you can’t just completely try and take these shots down the field. You can see how much it’s moving out there. So we were trying to establish the run game, same with what the Patriots were trying to do as well. They’re not out there chucking 30-, 40-yard throws down the field either. But I got to find a way to make the easy ones on the sideline and try and let my guys get on the outside and run. It really comes down to execution.
How tough will it be to shake this one off, just losing like that in the last seconds?
Yeah, I mean, obviously, it sucks to lose that way, but we’re going to move on from it.
You guys put so much on, the guys talked a lot about this game and wanting to go play it and so forth. What does that do to your momentum, what does that do to anybody’s confidence when things go the way they did today?
Nothing. We’ve won some big games, we’ve lost some games, obviously, that we want back, so we’re going to move on after this one and we got Chicago next week.
It looked like CBS cameras caught Garrett and Denzel a little upset after a couple of missed passes. Did they say anything to you or have you talked to them on the sideline after that or was it the heat of the moment?
We’re all close. We’re all talking and communicating. There’s stuff that I want them to do different and I guess get frustrated as well. Then there’s stuff that I missed a throw high there and they’re frustrated as well. It goes both ways. This isn’t anyone pointing fingers here. This is everybody taking accountability here and everyone’s trying to get better.
It seemed like you were able to do some things with your legs early in the game. How come that didn’t continue throughout the game?
They got a little bit of a pass rush in the second half. And then they started spying a little bit, had someone on the back end. So just trying to try to get some completions.
Was the pass rush particularly, did you guys get rattled by it given as many times as they got into the back field?
I don’t think that’s it necessarily. Kind of just take it one play at a time. We’ll watch the film and see.
Is this game hard to move past because of, I mean, first place was on the line, it’s the Patriots, wanting to revenge after last year, earlier this year. Does this one sting more that you lost and the way you lost it?
It sucks to lose always, but we got a lot of season left, so we’re going to move on and try to get better.
As an offense though, I mean, you guys are only able to score three points, the defense only lets up three points. Do you feel like you let the defense down at all?
(On what the Patriots did in the game today)
“They are doing a lot and they do a lot really sound. Obviously, I haven’t seen all the plays for a second time, so I’m not going to dive into any of that. They executed a little bit better than we did.”
(On the frustration of the lost)
“Of course, we lost the game. If we came away with six [points] and won the game, of course we would still be frustrated but at least we won. At the end of the day, you walk away from any loss with frustration. You know what you put into this game, and you know what you put into each and every week.”
(On getting past the divisional opponents)
“It is a divisional opponent and you are going to see them twice a year. Obviously, division games matter a little bit more as far as the standings go at the end of the year. We are lucky enough to be in a position to be thinking about that right now. At the end of the day, we need to go back obviously and figure out what we did wrong and what we can do better and just keep improving. Again, we have a long way to go.”
(On the quiet locker room)
“Like I said, we all put in everything into this, hours and a lot, a lot of time, our life revolves around this, and of course it is frustrating. It would be ridiculous to say that it’s not, but at the end of the day, it’s supposed to be frustrating, any loss is supposed to be frustrating. Obviously all credit to them, we were in a dog fight, and they made one more play than we did, and that’s reflected in the score. Like I said it is what it is, we will go back tomorrow, and figure out what we can get better at, and Tuesday off and Wednesday will be a new week.”
(On the punt return touchdown)
“I was just trying to get down there and do my responsibility as the first person down. At the end of the day no matter what the punt is, as a unit we’re not supposed to allow that to happen. It doesn’t matter if the punt is high or low. As a punt unit you can’t let that happen, so it’s on everybody.”
(On the offensive struggle today)
“It was just a weird game out there today. It seemed like we couldn’t get anything going. The running game, the passing game, I wish I knew how to answer these questions. Personally I thought it was an odd game too. We’ve just got to be better as a unit. Whether it’s the run game or the pass game, everybody has a hand in it. We all had plays we could have made or should have done better and we didn’t. As a unit we all have to look at ourselves personally and figure out what we should have done better in the future to not have a performance like that again.”
(On the play of the defense)
“We had a great game plan. Obviously it wasn’t good enough. I think Coach did a good job of putting us in the correct position. We have to capitalize more. They got a couple out on us, we have to go correct that, but overall I think we did well. It’s a mindset. You go out every game expecting to shut them out. It’s just another game, another opportunity, to do that. The Patriots have some great players, some great running backs who break a lot of tackles. We understood that. We understood we had to get people to the ball and I think we did a good job of that.”
(On the six sacks)
“It goes back to Coach putting us in good positions, understanding how to rush with each other, play off one another. The game plan was great. I can’t really say too many bad things about what we are doing as far as pass rush. We expect to win every one-on-one.”
(On the punt return touchdown)
“It hurts watching something like that. You don’t want to see anything like that. You just want a blade of grass to defend, and we didn’t get that. We could have done better throughout the game and maybe that wouldn’t have happened. Hindsight is 20/20 and we have to go back and learn from that.”
(On the punt return)
“I got triple teamed, and they were triple teaming me the whole game. I’m not making that as an excuse because I beat the triple team today. But they got a good block, they got a good block, they were out front. I tried to chase him down, I obviously wasn’t close enough. I tried to track him down, and I got hit. Whether it was on the side or in the back it wasn’t good enough. It wasn’t up to my standards, it wasn’t up to the Jets standards. I put it on me. I’ll go and work harder, go in the film room more. To do whatever I can to make this team better. To make the special teams group better. It’s not all on me, it’s eleven guys on the field. But me being the captain, I’m always going to point the finger at me first.”
(On the outcome of the game)
“However we lost, it was crushing because we lost that way. We still have seven games left, a lot of football. So it was one game, we’ve got to move on, stay positive, keep our momentum moving and get ready for Chicago. That’s out only worry right now is Chicago. This game is over with, we’ll come in tomorrow, get the corrections, all the tough love, and move on.”
(On the defense)
“We did what we do. Stopping the run and earning the right to get to the quarterback. We came in and executed. Going out there not giving anything, making the plays you are supposed to make and capitalizing on the opportunities. We go out there every day and give full effort. We did the things that we practice every day. All of us come out and it’s a product of all of us working together and building together. That was just the result of our work.”
(On moving forward)
“It was a hard loss but that doesn’t affect who we are. We’ve got to get back to practice and work hard so we can beat Chicago this week.”
(On the defense making the stops)
“That’s just our mentality every time, it doesn’t matter the opponent. When you have defensive linemen like we have here, and everybody trusting each other, we get excited every time we step out on the field. Any time we get the moment we make the best of it.”
(On the way the game ended)
“It was tough, obviously everybody thought we were going to overtime. Credit to them doing their job. They did a great job blocking and getting their player free. It was tough, but that’s the NFL. There have been worse losses. We got seven more, so I’m definitely excited. I’m ready for next week. We got to get back to work tomorrow.”
(On the defense only giving up three points)
“It was a tough loss, that’s for sure. But it’s not the end of the world. We have a chance to go out there next week, and try to put our best foot forward and be great as a team. So that’s what we’re looking forward too.”
(On the play of the defense)
“We were doing our best to not let the other team score and just taking it play-by-play, communicating and trusting what we see out there. We were really confident. That is one of toughest games I’ve played in as far as how the outcome went. We are going to stick together. We have got to watch the film and get better. Me, myself, I have to watch the film and get better. I gave up about four catches. They were tight windows, but four catches. Short yardage but I have to look at the film and grow from there. It was the game we wanted. We were smiling, we were happy. The defense thought it was going to overtime. We were ready to go to see what would happen from there.”
(On the Jets)
“We’re a team. The word I would use to define this team is ‘great.’ Our point differential in the fourth quarter is number-one in the league. There’s a reason for that. We have a lot of guys who play for each other and we don’t are about the accolades just want to play for one another, dominate and play Jets football.”
(On the punt return)
“I’m still in disbelief. Marcus Jones, I know him from college, he went to Houston. Hell of a punt returner and they gave him a chance. He is a great punt returner and he got his touchdown. Credit to them for doing that. I’m in disbelief, it’s a tough loss.”