MIA Post-Game Quotes

Head Coach Brian Flores

On grading the game defensively…
I thought we played well defensively. We got some turnovers. Josh (Boyer) called a great game really throughout. We had some sudden change situations with some turnovers. We were able to get ourselves off the field. We got a big stop on the fourth-and-one in the red zone. Obviously, keeping them out of the end zone is always a great accomplishment in this league. We had some turnovers, a big stop on fourth-and-one. I thought Josh called a great game. He’s done a great job really the entire year. I think often times you give me too much credit. Josh has done a great job the entire year.

On how he’d assess how Ryan Fitzpatrick played…
I thought Ryan played well. He made enough plays to helps us win the game. He spread the ball around to a number of different receivers. Obviously, there are always things he can do better and we can do better as an offense, as a defense, as a special teams, as coaches, but he made enough plays to help us win.

On where their quarterback situation stands moving forward…
Obviously, Tua (Tagovailoa) was downgraded to out. We’ll see how he does in practice over the course of the week. He’s a tough kid. It was very close to him being able to go, but we have to make good decisions for him as well. We’ll see how he does over the course of this week in practice.

On DeVante Parker…
I think we had some matchups that we like out there. DeVante is a good player. We tried to give him some opportunities. There was a young corner out there. I thought he made some plays as well. I was pretty impressed with Bryce Hall. We gave DeVante some opportunities and he made some plays. But again, it’s not just a two-man show. We got some protection from our offensive line. They were giving us some different looks, some pretty difficult looks. Gregg (Williams) does a great job from that standpoint. They got some pressure on us, so we had to make some plays and Fitz hit DeVante multiple times who made a few plays for us.

On if Tua will start if he’s healthy…
Yeah, if he’s healthy, he’s the guy. I don’t know how many different ways we have to continue to say that. You keep asking, I’ll keep answering the same way. Again, he’s dealing with something with the hand. We’ll take it day-to-day. He’s a tough kid. He wants to be out there. Thankfully, we have other guys who stepped up. We can talk about Tua, but we had 52 other guys who went out there and played their butts off today in all three phases. We were able to get a division win on the road. We’re excited to win. We’ll enjoy the win and then turn the page and move on to the next opponent, the Bengals.

On how Fitzpatrick approaches the game that allows him to create longer passing plays…
He’s a very experienced player. He’s seen pretty much every coverage, every disguise, every defensive structure, every front. I think he could see the matchups that he likes based on the coverage that they are giving us. When you can see all those things, it gives you the opportunity to make the right decisions. I thought he made some good ones today. We needed it. It’s good to have Fitz. He’s obviously a leader on this team. He’s been that throughout and he’ll continue to be that for this team.

On how he manages the attempt to make a playoff run and give Tua the rookie experience…
You probably know the answer to this already. We’re going to take this one day at a time and try to improve and get better on a daily basis from meetings, to walkthrough, to practice. I just try to prepare and get better. Honestly, I’m actually saying that very sincerely. That’s about as authentic and genuine as I can be. To get into a playoff this or that, I’m not really into all that. I’m into let’s get better tomorrow. Let’s make the corrections from the game today. Let’s prepare for the next opponent. What are the things they do well? What are the things we think we can take advantage of? Let’s give the players that information and then try to prepare for the next opponent. We’ll go through our Monday routine and our Tuesday routine and our Wednesday routing and our Thursday routine and so on and so forth. Then, let the chips fall where they fall. If we prepare the right way, then you’re probably going to know the next thing I’m going to say. The results hopefully take care of themselves. I don’t know any other way of approaching it. I don’t think about weeks from now. I’m focused on hopping in the shower, getting on the bus, getting on the plane, getting home. I’ll watch the film on the plane and take it from there.

On DeAndre Washington…
Those fourth quarter first downs, fourth quarter rushing yards, fourth quarter time of possession, those are all things we talk about and are very important. If we can get those done and finish all games like today, that’s always good. I though (Washington) ran the ball effectively. We need that. Especially when we’re trying to close out a game. He had a run there in the fourth quarter that sprung the final drive that put us up 17. We’ve had a lot of different guys back there, I thought (Matt) Breida ran the ball effectively. I thought (Patrick) Laird had a good run prior to fumbling. We’re getting there, we just have to keep working at it.

Ryan Fitzpatrick

On Xavien Howard’s impact on the game …
Turnovers are such a big part of this game. It’s momentum, it’s field position, it’s just confidence overall. We don’t take that for granted on offense that they’re doing that, creating those turnovers, because we know it’s difficult to do, and they’ve been really good at it. It’s a great feeling to be sitting on the bench, looking at the tablet and somebody handing you your helmet and saying, “Hey, we’re back up. X got another interception.” It’s unbelievable. He’s always around the ball. He’s always got his hands on the ball. He’s a pretty special player in that regard.

On the rollercoaster of emotions that come with getting another chance to start…
It’s kind of been the story of my career. It’s been so up and down and I’m in the lineup, and I’m out of the lineup, and I’m back in. For me, just trying to stay steady, just trying to provide the team with leadership and going out there when my number’s called and playing well, and that’s what I had to try to do in this situation. I tell you guys the same thing every time I come off the field. I love playing, I love being out there. It was fun to be out there today.

On what his week was like and when he found out he was going to start…
There was so much uncertainty throughout the week. We really had no idea. With a young guy and with an old guy, it’s easier for the old guy not to get any reps, so, it was just kind of up in the air all week. I didn’t know if I’d be out there or not. It was unfortunate for Tua (Tagovailoa) to have the thumb, but I was happy to be able to be out there with the guys today.

On running the option in the fourth quarter at his age…
I think that one might have been in the game plan for Tua, not me, I don’t know. When it came in as the play call, I laughed to myself, called it, and was very surprised. Maybe 10 years ago, I score on that thing, but I was glad to get the first down.

On DeVante Parker…
DeVante’s very special with the 50-50 ball and some of those tough catches. So, for us, and really for me as a quarterback, if teams are going to give us the opportunity to do that, then I’m going to give DeVante the opportunity to make that play more often than not. People can say sometimes that’s not the right move and whatever else, but if I’ve got a guy that I trust, that I’ve seen do it over and over and over again, then I’m going to give him every opportunity to make a play and he did a great job of making some of those today. It was just a lot of man coverage out there and a pretty classic DeVante Parker game when you play him in man coverage.

On whether this season has reignited his fire to keep playing…
It has been such a strange season and really, when you throw COVID in there, that’s probably the most difficult. Not being able to see my family as much as (I’d like to) see them. Not being able to bring the kids in the locker room after the games. There’s a lot of stuff that I take a tremendous amount of pride in and so much joy in being able to provide for my family that I haven’t been able to do this year. So that’s made it really difficult for me. And everybody’s had sacrifices and things they’ve had to do in order to get this season played and these games played, but this season for me has been very difficult for that reason. But if we took everything else out of it and it was just me playing football, yeah, 100%. I think last year maybe reignited me more than this year. I’ve been ignited for a little while now, but yeah, I like being out there.

On his support of Tagovailoa and how important it is for everybody to be on the same page…
I do think that’s important and I think just in the quarterback room in general having each other’s backs and supporting each other. I think that’s very important because it is such a tough position to play. I’ve now been put in a different role and when my number’s called, I’m going to go out there and win games for this team. So Flo (Brian Flores) is the head coach and we listen and respect what he says and we go from there.