Raiders Postgame Quotes (Week Ten)
Interim Head Coach Antonio Pierce
Q: First of all, you went for it on fourth down on your side of the field and just reminded everybody of how you played as a player and your team responded. Can you talk about their response?
Coach Pierce: “At that point, we had the momentum. That’s a play we worked on in practice. They got our defense a couple of times. It’s kind of hard to see DC [DeAndre Carter] right there. Obviously, a great block
by Josh Jacobs. But that’s just believing in your team, we were right there at the fifty-yard line. Our defense
was playing really good football, I thought we were controlling the game defensively, and I kind of went
with my gut.”
Q: The offensive line tonight certainly had their hands full with the Jets. When you think about the fact
Kolton Miller was out and who they were playing, how proud are you of that offensive line?
Coach Pierce: “Very. We talked about that earlier in the week, obviously with [Kolton] Miller being out.
Big ups to Jermaine [Eluemunor] switching from right tackle to left tackle. It’s not easy doing that in the
middle of the season, late in the season. He did it like a champ. He was the best guy that we felt to put
out there to give us the opportunity to win the game. What you see right there is a team of guys being —
whatever it takes to do for one another, they’re willing to do it. That’s what I’m proud about with them.
It wasn’t pretty at times, but they kept battling and they believed.”
Q: Can you talk a little about the extent to which the change of culture, the change of attitude has
converted into two wins in a row now?
Coach Pierce: “Well, it’s football. Not everything will go your way. Nobody is trying to make a mistake.
Nobody does anything on purpose to have a bad call or do something silly. Like I told these guys at the
very beginning, we’re all fortunate to be in the National Football League. We’re all fortunate to work for
a great organization, fan base and alumni and when you come to work every day, do it with a smile,
because one day that door is going to close and we’re not going to be able to walk in it anymore. It was
no different today. Our fans, they kept us in the game, their energy, their passion, their support
throughout. That’s what energized our guys in the end. If you watched the last 30 seconds, you saw our
entire bench up on the sideline rooting on our defense, talking to Davante [Adams] right next to me and
Josh Jacobs. All those guys are sitting there just rallying the troops. That’s what this culture is about. It’s
Q: I’d like you to talk about the job that Bo Hardegree did tonight. I thought he did an exceptional job
calling a game for Aidan O’Connell doing what he could do?
Coach Pierce: “Let’s go back to the very beginning. That was a good defense. It looked good on paper, it
looked good on tape, and it was good in person. I thought Bo and Aidan handled everything they were
throwing at us. A very, very talented group up front. A well-coached group. You can see why they’re in
every game. You can see why they are right there. But Bo, Aidan, and myself. Three rookies, right? Figuring
it out together and believing in one another –good, bad, or ugly, we’re going to ride with one another.”
Q: It seemed like you were getting Davante Adams involved in the game early with different plays,
different look. How important is that in your game plan?
Coach Pierce: “Well, I mean, what’s the first thing you saw when you watched the Jets? They loaded the
box. Then we’re going to have opportunities here for Davante [Adams] and obviously saw the first couple
of plays were right to him, get the ball in his hands, get him going. Listen, when you have one of the best
receivers in the game – I’m not stupid. I know who to get the ball to, 17 and 8. We have some other good
football players, really good ones – Jakobi Meyers and Hunter Renfrow. Big Mike[Michael Mayer], that
was a huge play by Big Mike in the red zone. He just got Mossed, right? That’s going to be on the tape. So,
good for Big Mike.”
Q: I noticed you had on black Air Force Ones today. What was your mental state going into this game
Pierce: “Raider Nation knows what that means. Stand up, blacked out. They speak for themselves.”
Q: How much are you enjoying this?
Pierce: “Tonight? Yeah, I had fun in that locker room. On the grass, that was different, that was stressful.
I don’t know if I’m going to do this for thirty years, I don’t know how guys do it. Man, this is fun being
around the guys. That’s the reason why I got back into coaching. You know as a former player, that’s one
thing that you always miss, is that locker room feeling. Being with one another, that continuity that, ‘I
need a pick me up.’ And I need a little pick me up out there too. I don’t know if I had a poker face on, but
I tried my best. But that’s what you miss, man, the guys just fighting, doing it together, and then when
you walk in that locker room and to see everybody smile and see the celebration, to see all the hard work
that we’ve done over the past several days come to fruition, it’s fun. For however long I’m here as a Raider,
as the head coach, we’re going to have a blast.”
Quarterback Aidan O’Connell
Q: That is one of the best defenses in all the NFL and without Kolton Miller your offensive line played
very well considering who they were playing. Do you agree and can I get your analysis of the offensive
O’Connell: “Yeah, 100 percent. Like you said, it’s an unbelievable unit, starts up front for them. They got
some great players up front and a lot of great linebackers, great secondary. We knew obviously with
Kolton out, you never want the guys to be down, but guys stepped up and played really well. I held on to
the ball too much in the first half and probably got in trouble with those sacks there, and so put those on
me. I got to get rid of the ball faster and make better decisions. Super proud of the offensive line, battled
their butts off, ran the ball well.”
Q:How much did you grow up today? How much did you learn about perseverance at your position?
O’Connell: “Yeah, I think a lot. It was a tough game; it was up and down. And obviously we were down
and had to come back. The second half was up and down, even each drive there was ups and downs,
getting second-and-short and then a penalty, or a bad play by us, or a negative play on first-and-10 and
behind the stick. So, kind of just all over the place and definitely not a super clean performance from us.
But it’s really hard to win in the National Football League, as I’m learning, and I’m just really proud of our
guys, our defense, special teams did an awesome job keeping us in the game for a while. And then a lot
of the guys on offense stepped up to make plays when they needed to.”
Q: When your head coach goes for it on fourth down on your side of the 50-yard line, what’s that say
to an offensive unit? How does that make you guys feel when he says, ‘Alright, let’s roll the dice and
O’Connell: “Yeah, it’s aggressive. There’s a sense where there’s just no fear and you have to play the game
in order to win. You don’t try to just keep from losing. I love the call from Bo [Hardegree]. Honestly, I love
the third down call on the last drive too. We were throwing the ball – you think to run the ball and run
the clock out, but it’s a tipped ball away from ending the game there. And so, it’s a fine line of being dumb
and being aggressive, and I trust what the coaches call and try to do my job the best I can.”
Q: Can you walk us through the touchdown pass to Michael Mayer? And the ball skills that he showed
on that play, when did you first see those balls skills that he had being in training camp or another time?
O’Connell: “Yeah, I think pretty early on Michael has shown us that he’s a special player, even rookie
minicamp I remember him just being the super tough guy. I remember him having blisters all over his feet
and his socks were full of blood. I think we knew as an offense and as a team we had a really good, young
player there. He did an awesome job making an awesome play. I kind of just threw it up and let him be a
football player and he made an awesome play. It was great protection again by the offensive line too. I
held onto the ball there even still a little bit too long, and so kudos to the guys around me for making
Q: I’d like to ask you about Bo Hardegree and Antonio Pierce. They’re calling a game with the stuff that
you know, allowing you to grow. How comfortable is that?
O’Connell: “Yeah, I think it’s huge. Like I said last week, Bo is the coach I’ve spent the most time with since
I’ve been in the NFL, so it’s really cool to see our relationship grow as we’re taking these steps together. I
love how hard Bo works and how much he puts into the game. Like I said, there’s an aggressive play style
and play calling to AP and Bo, both of those guys, so all the confidence in the world in our entire coaching
staff. They are doing an awesome job under the circumstances, so yeah, it’s been fun.”
Wide Receiver Davante Adams
Q: What did you think of the poise and leadership of your rookie quarterback tonight?
Adams: “It was impressive, man. He’s as cool as the other side of the pillow. Dude is not a rookie. By years
he is, but by action, and like you said, that poise that he has in those type of situations, you don’t see that
often from a rookie quarterback. Like I said last week, the way he commands the huddle, the way he talks
to us, the communication and confidence. Throw a pick down there early on in the game and the way he
bounced back is impressive. So, I’m glad he is our guy.”
Q: Josh Jacobs the last couple weeks has really got it going and had somewhat of a breakthrough in the
run game. How does it change your offense when he’s rolling like that?
Adams: “I mean, it just changes the way they can play me out there. If you want to sit there and put an
extra person over the top every single play or do whatever you want to do on defense, we’ll find a way to
make you pay. We’ve done more talking probably in this last week and a half or so then we ever have as
far as that type of problem solving and making sure we complement one another. He’s a great runner and
he does a good job at making good choices. So, we just got to make sure we continue to do that and keep
pushing and moving forward.”
Q: It seems like that late run he had in the third quarter, the 40-yard run kind of sparked you all to finish
that game strong. How did the team respond to that moment?
Adams: “I mean, you saw the sideline, you see the way we reacted in-game. Aside from how critical that
was at that moment for us, it was obviously just good to see a big run like that. After all the game of
struggling and make him go, those are the type of plays that keep you going moving forward. The times
where they figure you’re going to be running the ball and you can still move it, especially after not having
success early on the game. So, really proud of our front and Josh for going out there and doing that.”
Q: You’ve talked about complimentary football and it went into the hands of your defense the last two
drives. Have you grown to expect that they’re going to come up with the play?
Adams: “Yeah, I mean, we expect that for sure. Anytime that they don’t, it’s our job on offense to pick
them up and make sure we do what we got to do. But if they can go out there and play ball like that, man,
we got to make it a little easier on them. At the end of the day, football is imperfect game and you just
got to win by one more point than the other team. As long as we’re setting out to do it the right way,
we’re executing to the best of our abilities. It’s not always going to be perfect, so you just got to figure it
out and do just better than the other team.”
Q: Based on tonight’s performance, what does it show about your guys’ grit and resilience as a team?
Adams: “I mean, that’s two totally different games that we put on tape. Last week, coming out and kind
of establishing the run early and hitting a multitude of different things on offense, and it was kind of
easier. In this one, we played against a really tough front and there’s some skilled guys in the back end
too. So, it’s not always going to be easy, like I said, but it shows that we’re that type of team, we can grit
it out and stay together and finish it no matter what style of ball we got to play.”
Q: What was it like catching up with Aaron Rodgers this week? Did part of you kind of wish he was out
there competing or are you happy that he wasn’t?
Adams: “I’m upset for football and for him that he’s not out there. But for this week, I was happy that we
just went to dinner and that’s the only action that he got. I don’t even need to talk about him as a football
player, but it was amazing to be able to see him. Obviously, that’s my guy. It’s been a little over a year
since we got to spend any time, so got the hang out last night and that was good for both of us. I know
we both felt good about that.”
Q: In terms of the aggressiveness of Bo Hardegree as a play caller, how much is that something you guys
can get behind?
Adams: “We got the type of team where you can do that. That’s what we’re down to do at this point, is
do whatever that helps this team move forward and put points on the board. So, we got to do a better
job of executing, but we love that aggression, we’re all about going for it on fourth down in smart
situations and just maximizing what we can do out there. We got a lot of talent on this team, so I think
the way he’s going about it is perfect.”
Linebacker Robert Spillane
Q: What did you see on the interception?
Spillane: “I saw Zach Wilson drop back, saw a little route concept into the boundary. Divine Deablo did a
great job making them double pump on the throw, which gave me time to get there. So, just good team
Q: Back in the spring, you talked about turnovers and the importance of the mindset of it. Is that an
example of that?
Spillane: “I always say turnovers change the complexion of the game. There’s not much difference
between a two-yard gain and a four-yard gain, it’s very minimal. But when you get those turnovers, you
change the complexion of a football game. So, we were able to come up with two big ones and it helped
Q: You said before that you like to it be on the defense when you have to make a play. What did it feel
like making that play?
Spillane: “It’s a dream come true. I pour my heart into football. To be able to help my team win is a
Q: What does this win say about the team’s grit and resilience?
Spillane: “Yeah, I think it says that we have a bunch of guys that want to win. Our will to win is very strong,
and we’re just going to keep pushing forward. A lot of unknowns going forward, we’re 5-5, we’re in a good
place. I think we’re really meshing as a locker room, so I’m very thankful to be here.”
Q: You came to the Raiders with one interception in your career. What do you feel has been the
difference this season now with you having three already?
Spillane: “Great team defense. It doesn’t happen without the guys around me. They’ve been making huge
plays. One of the interceptions against Green Bay, Marcus Peters tipped it right to me. Divine Deablo does
a great job of making the quarterback double pump. None of this happens alone, you got to trust the guys
around you and play team defense. And we’re going to keep continuing to do that.”
Q: You have four turnovers on the season now. When’s the last time you did that?
Spillane: “I really don’t keep stats. I don’t keep trophies. I go forward and none of this means anything
tomorrow. We got the win; we came here with what we accomplished to do. None of my interceptions
mean anything going forward. We got to reestablish ourselves every weekend, and we’d love to do that
Q: What has it been like with Antonio Pierce now as the head coach versus when he was your linebacker
Spillane: “He’s been the same guy. He’s going to continue to be himself, unapologetically. That’s all you
can ask for out of a head coach. He’s going to pour his heart into our team and to getting us wins. Nothing
more you can ask for.”
Q: A couple days ago everyone was kind of marveling at the fact that you broke your hand, had surgery
and didn’t miss a single snap in the last two games despite that. Then you come out today and have an
interception. How do you do that?
Spillane: “I’m a football player. Football players play football games. They play hurt, they play injured. I
learned that at a very young age. Most people think you have to play hurt, but not injured. You have to
play injured. You got to play with broken fingers, you got to play with a broken hand, you got to play with
a torn MCL. It’s an honor and a privilege to go out there, so I never want to miss any opportunity to be on
Q: AP looked like he might have been more fired up than anyone up for your interception?
Spillane: “AP is a passionate two-time Super Bowl champion, who’s done a great job leading us so far in
the very short time he has been our leader. I look up to him and I’m very thankful he’s our head coach.”
Running Back Josh Jacobs
Q: You almost had 100 yards last week and got 116 yards this week. How important was that number
Jacobs: “116, I didn’t even know. I was just helping the defense. I didn’t want to be the reason why we
Q: What is it like when the first 15 carries or whatever you’re doing the best you can but just getting
limited to short gains, but you always have the confidence you’re going to break one of them. What’s it
feel like when you finally had that 40-yarder?
Jacobs: “Yeah, man. We were doing a lot of runs in the beginning to play off of it. We knew it was going
to pay off eventually. So, I just told them, ‘Stick with what we are doing.’ And then when it was time to
run out, the offensive line, they kind of came over to me and told me what they see and what they feel
and what they thought the defense was trying to accomplish against the run. And literally the next play,
we hit for the big one. Shout out to them.”
Q: How big was it without Kolton Miller for the offensive line to kind of mix and match in their roles
and still find a way to get you guys some space?
Jacobs: “Yeah, for Jermaine [Eluemunor] man. Obviously, you know in this league, on any level, it’s hard
to go from right to left. So, to see him coming in and do that and give everything he had and play pretty
well, I think that that just speaks to the type of character he has and the work that he put in this week.”
Q: Take us through that 40-yard gain? You kind of cut back to begin.
Jacobs: “Yeah, we were in the huddle early there, Greg [Van Roten] told me he said, ‘Man, look, they want
you to bounce outside, keep it inside. Just trust it.’ I went, ‘Okay, I got you.’ Literally, that next play, we hit
a big one. So, that was really him.”
Q: How important was it for team morale to really get this win and do it against a good defense?
Jacobs: “I mean, I think it’s good just because we know what type of team that we have. And to be able
to see even when it’s not perfect, to still squeeze out the wins, I think that speaks volumes to what this
team is trying to do and where are we trying to go. I tell people all the time in the locker room, don’t blink
because this is not a fluke. To me, it’s not a fluke. What we put in, the work that we put in, I feel like it’s
going to pay off. And hopefully we continue to keep doing that.”
Q: The aggressive play calling by Bo Hardegree, how much is it something you guys can kind of get
behind and rally around?
Jacobs: “Yeah, man. The thing that I like about Bo the most is obviously he takes his chances and things
like that. But he also listens to the other coaches. And then if we feel like something’s not working, or we
feel like we didn’t get to a play that we needed to get to, he goes in there and he listens to the coaches,
and then he goes out there and calls it. So that’s the thing that I will say is the biggest thing that I like
about the man, is that he calls it.”
Q: Last week you guys got to give out the game balls. Was that a repeat this week? Did you get to hand
out a game ball?
Jacobs: “No, we didn’t give them out this week. Some people lit up some stogies.”
Q: Aidan O’Connell showed a lot of poise out there. How have you seen him grow and mature as a
quarterback out there since becoming a starter?
Jacobs: “Yeah, man. I always tell him all the time, I go up to him and I’m like, ‘Man, believe in yourself. We
believe in you.’ And I look at it in his eyes every time and the thing that I like is he could have a bad play
or whatever and he’ll come back in, and he’ll command the huddle the next draw up, and he’ll get
everybody going. He demands that respect and, I mean, for a rookie, I think that’s huge. Hopefully he
keeps doing that; keep learning, keep growing, moving forward.”
Q: You know every game isn’t going to be a blowout, obviously, but do you think it’s important to the
guys showing grit and toughness?
Jacobs: “At the end of the day, a win is a win. I don’t care how you get it. Some people might say we didn’t
win the way we want to, but a win is a win. It’s still a positive. So, I think that wins like this, especially
against that type of defense, to be able to grind it out, compete, it really felt like a slug fest out there. I
was getting hit by three or four people on some plays. I’m like, ‘Damn.’ But I’m getting back up and I’m
like,’ Alright, we’re going to come back at you.’ So, I talked with Bo Jackson this week, and he just told me,
he said, ‘Man, you run them off like an RB, you pick them up, you say alright, I’m going to come back 40
seconds later.’ I tried to have that mentality today.”
Q: When your guys’ defense holds in the first half, how much energy does that give your offense?
Jacobs: “If you look at the defense the last two weeks, really, they’ve been doing what they’re supposed
to. Like I said, they saved me today. So, I wanted to personally shake all their hands after the game. But
hopefully we can continue to keep stacking and finding what works for us and allowing our players to play
free and be fast. I think this is the most turnovers we’ve had in consecutive games since I’ve been here.
So, I think that’s a huge testament to them.”
Q: Can you talk about the touchdown to Michael Mayer?
Jacobs: “That dude is good, bro. I think people sleep on how good he’s going to be. I really watch him, I
tell them all the time, I say, ‘Man, I appreciate you.’ I don’t think it’s going unnoticed at practice every
week, just because of the way he works, how professional he is as a rookie, the way he wants to be in the
game, and he wants that moment. We always take top-shelf pullback, so he caught it, and you see
everybody turned up because he did the top-shelf pullback, so and that’s a testament to him for sure.”