Capers quotes

(Opening statement) "Our game last night was a great example that you can't make mistakes and expect to win in this business. We've got to go back to work, starting tomorrow and become a more disciplined and smarter football team and do all the things it takes to win football games. My hope is that we'll learn from some of the things we did last night in terms of what we can and cannot do, and I believe that we will. We have a lot of work to do because our opener is right around the corner and I'm convinced that we can get to where we need to be. Of all the negative things we did last night, we still have a tremendous opportunity to, with eight minutes to go in the fourth quarter it was seven to three, and we turned the ball over down at the fifteen yard line and it takes four plays and they score. There were some positive things in all three phases of the team. On special teams we made a couple of big plays. We had a 51 yard punt return by Jerome Mathis to set up a field goal. Reggie Swinton had the 102 yard kickoff return. Phillip Buchanon had three punt returns with a 10.7 average. Kris Brown kicked another 50-yard field goal, and we really didn't allow them any big plays. There's no question in my mind we have more playmaking ability on our special teams than we've had at any point in time. Three of the returners we put out there last night did a great job. The thing we didn't do on special teams is by far had too many penalties. We had six penalties on special teams, four of those were holding penalties. We had one running into the returner and one running into the kicker. I figure that we lost on five of those penalties 112 yards. So obviously that's something we have to get to work on and get corrected. When you put yourself in such a hole and you give up that much hidden yardage, you cant do that and expect to win in the NFL.

"Offensively, the thing we did the best job of was we ran the ball.  On 28 rushes we averaged 4.1 per rush.  We were 50/50 in terms of our win/losses in the first half.   We didn't run with quite the same efficiency in the second half.  The first half we had 38 plays and really through the course of the game we had one three-and-out series.  But what we didn't do, where in the first two games we did an outstanding job of protecting the football, we turned it over three times (last night).  We threw two interceptions and had one fumble.  The first interception was down on the 21 yard line.  We go from having a field goal to having the interception and taking points off the board.  And the fumble in the fourth quarter, down on our own fifteen yard line and they score the touchdown there.  So I look at that as a 10 point turnover.  We had seven penalties on offense.  These things really affect drives and make it difficult to sustain things.  We had a couple false starts, a couple holds, illegal block, illegal use of the hands, personal foul on offsetting penalties, and we need to do a better job on third down.  We were four-for-13 for 31 percent on third down.  We only had what we consider one big play, we had the 23 yard run.  So it was not as efficient as a performance on offense.  We did not get the ball in the endzone so we've got to go back to work.  We were not sharp and were too sloppy at times with turnovers and penalties. 

"Defensively, I thought we did an outstanding job on third down.  Their first unit in the first half did not convert a third down against us.  We were five for five on defense in the first half.  We had a number of three-and-out series against them, and couple one first down-and-outs.  We did not have any penalties.  As many as we had on special teams and offense we didn't have any defensive penalties.  The thing we've got to continue to work on is not giving up the big play.  They had three plays, runs of 23, 21 and 15 yards against us, and they had two pass plays of 36 and 26.  And on the other hand, we did not have any turnovers, so any time you finish minus three in the takeaway/giveaway category, it's hard to win games.  Over the years, if you're minus three it really doesn't make a difference what else you do, it makes it tough to win. 

"This will be a short week for us.  We've only got two practices before we travel to Tampa Bay.  This week, we're going to start to trim our roster.  We have to be down to 65 plus our NFL Europe players on Tuesday.  We held 14 players out of the game last night.  If there was anything good that did come out of the game, we came out of it fairly healthy.  As I look at our injury list for tomorrow I think we only have seven players that will be held out of practice.   I did see some things I was encouraged by, playmaking abilities on special teams, our defense went out, they had the one drive in the first held against us, but other than that I saw some real good things.  I saw some good things on our number two defense against their number one offense the first two series of the second half.  What we have to do is take a good hard look at this and finish what we need to do.   We have a lot of things to work on in terms of getting ready for that opener against Buffalo."

(on Domanick Davis' injury)  "Domanick has got just an ankle sprain on his right ankle.  We'll hold him out of practice tomorrow.  We think that he'll be fine.  Probably if we had to play on Sunday, he'd be ready to play.  But obviously we're going to be cautious with it.  But he won't practice tomorrow.  Phillip Buchanon is fine and we expect him to practice tomorrow.  The guys that we'll hold out of practice tomorrow: Domanick Davis, B. J. Symons, Jason Bell, Zeke Moreno, Shantee Orr, Jon Pendergrass and Latarence Dunbar.  Everyone else will be practicing with some guys on a limited basis.  We should get some people back that we haven't had, DaShon Polk will be back out practicing, Derick Armstrong should be back out practicing, Chris McKenzie will be back doing some things, Zach Wiegert will practice some, Jerry Deloach will be back out there, so like I said if there was something positive it's that we came out without having any major setbacks from an injury standpoint."

(on if Jabar Gaffney will play in the preseason finale on Thursday) "Right now, the plan is to play Jabar Gaffney.  He's really done all the things assignment-wise, it's just going to be going out there and playing at full speed, taking hits and diving and do some things he hasn't done.  He's been capable of doing these things, but we've just been cautious because we felt why put him in a bad situation to where we have an extra three or four weeks to get that shoulder stronger.  It's just a matter of taking that next step and getting to the point where he feel comfortable doing those things."

(on Vernand Morency's performance) "I like the way he runs the ball.  He's decisive, he runs with a lot of energy and has quickness.  He had trouble at times with his footing, as did a few of our other players, because he is a hard, sharp cutter.  But I think the last two weeks we've seen some of the things he's capable of doing.  I think he'll just continue to get better.  I like the way he stepped up and blocked.  A couple times, he had to block outside linebackers and he stepped right up in there and had a lot of fight to him."

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