Williams proved that hard work pays off, winning AP Player of the Week honors.
Texans head coach Gary Kubiak and several players spoke to the media before and after Wednesday's practice.
Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(on the defensive honors DE Mario Williams earned) "It's a heck of an honor in this league with the players that are playing on a weekly basis. He's worked extremely hard. It's nice to have him come out of a game like that to the start of the season, so we're just expecting some more from him."
(on how far Williams has come) "He's come a long way, because there's a great deal of pressure or tension on him since he's been here. And we've seen that. We've seen that type of player, and what he's done. The kid's done everything we've asked him to do with his work habits and stuff. I like I've always told you all, one of the biggest things in this business is getting a little confidence. And having things go your way, he should be very confident coming out of that game."
(on how important it is to get results from Williams) "This league is about respect. There're so many great players. And when you start to get respect around this league, and your peers seeing how you're playing, you get some of these things happen to you like he had this past week. It's got to make you feel pretty good. I mean, he's done everything we've asked him to do. He's worked hard. I'm sure he's been thinking, where are these sacks, where are these plays. And he found a few of them this weekend. But it's a credit to all of them. They all played well."
(on the challenge Williams faces against a Carolina offense) "It's a big-time challenge. Those guys went down to St. Louis last week, and that was a football team that everybody knew they had last year when they were picking them to be the representative in the Super Bowl of the NFC. They're healthy. They're back in tact on both sides of the ball. They were dominant on both sides of the ball. It will take our best effort."
(on the duo of DE Julius Peppers and DE Mike Rucker) "I think it's as good as there is in football. And then you throw DL (Kris) Jenkins in there - that's the one nobody talks about, but him as an inside player is very demanding on you as an offensive football team. But their front and their defense as a whole, I think is one of the best in the league when you look at how everything pans out this year. We've got a tremendous challenge ahead of us."
(on comparing DE Mario Williams to DE Julius Peppers) "They're built the same, John. They're both what, 6'7" guys? You don't find that sort of size playing defensive line. So they're built the same so they've been compared a lot. I know their number 90 has been doing it a long time on their side of the ball. Hopefully, we can get ours doing it for a long time also."
(on what Williams needs to do to be as consistently good as Peppers) "That's the key. He's got to be consistent. DE Julius Peppers has been doing it week-in and week-out now for what seven or eight years. Am I'm right? And if you want to be considered a great player in this league, if you want your peers to think of you that way, you have to do it week-in and week-out."
(on if he has told Williams to study Peppers) "I think he kind of done that. He watches a lot of film of other players. Jethro (Franklin) and Frank (Bush) have had him doing that here since the offseason started. But I think he respects him, and knows what type of player he is. If we can get close to that, it's going to be a good career for him."
(on facing Carolina, knowing that QB David Carr has told the team about the Texans' system) "He knows us. He knows how we call things, some of our terminology at the line of scrimmage. But I'm one of those guys, I don't get caught up in that too much. I'm worried about what we're doing. Let's worry about our football. Let's fix some things we made mistakes on this past week. Because if we don't do that, it won't matter whether they know we're running or passing if we're not doing it well. Hopefully, we'll go down there and play solid football."
(on if he's changing calls because of Carr) "No. I've been around where people say, let's make this call or let's do this and do the opposite. You get so damn consumed with that that you forget to just go play. We're going to go play. We're going to worry about our stuff and try to go play well."
(on Carolina's head coach John Fox having a similar mentality) "I think he's saying exactly what I'm saying. You get too consumed with that type of stuff, and it gets you out of what you should be doing. You've got to worry about yourself. "
(on how he feels about the Patriots' spying scandal) "I have no comment regarding that one."
(on if he's ever known anyone who has stolen signals) "I have no comment regarding that one. I saw Charlie Weiss on TV and I got the same comment. No comment."
(on how he'll try to contain Peppers) "It's hard because they move him everywhere. He's such a good player, a smart player. He'll play inside on your guard. He'll play on both sides as a defensive end. So to sit there and say this is how we're going to neutralize him, I don't think you can do that. They're too good as a group. We're just going to have to play well against him and we're going to have to be very balanced."
(on the importance of communication) "It's very important. The fact that those guys have been together a while, they can do a lot of things with the front. But I think what's key for us is having third downs that are manageable. If you get to third and seven or 10 against this team, then you're going to get beat. So hopefully we keep it on schedule."
(on any new injuries) "DE Travis (Johnson) had a little ankle issue coming out of the game that was a little more severe than we thought. He did not practice today, but we're expecting him to be ready to go. So he'll be the biggest question mark going into the game."
(on what he likes best about S Will Demps) "I went against him. He's an overachiever. He came into this league as a free agent. He made his way onto one of the best defenses in football in Baltimore and played a great deal. He's very well respected. He's smart. He's knows some guys on our team- DE Anthony Weaver a good friend. He knows T Ephraim (Salaam). He knows G Chester (Pitts). He has a connection with Martin Bayless. So that stuff kind of helped us get him in here and get him going."
(on Demps' role this weekend) "We'll see how much defense he grasps. But he's going to have to be ready to go. He's in the exact same position that S (Michael) Boulware was in last week. He's going to have to know enough defense to be able to play and be a factor on special teams. We're going to have to get him and Michael (Boulware) going real fast."
(on how concerned he is with the injuries at secondary) "It's a big concern, but we've got a hell of a coach back there. He does a good job with them. He's been working with those guys on his off days here or when we're game planning, I should say. There are no days off. But he does a heck of a job and he'll get them ready."
S Michael Boulware
(on if he's played against Carolina before) "I have played. Last time I played against them was for the NFC Championship, and fortunately for us we got the victory. And so I'm expecting the same type of result this week."
(on QB Jake Delhomme and WR Steve Smith) "They have a great combination. Between the running game and Steve Smith, they can do pretty much anything they want. You definitely have to stop the run first and then you have to stop number 89 (Smith). Those are two big pieces of the puzzle, and Jake does a great job of keeping that balance."
(on if he feels ready to go) "I'm definitely ready to go, but I've got to continue to improve. I've definitely got a lot to learn, but I'm ready to play."
(on if the adjustment has been harder than expected) "No, not harder than I thought it would be, but it's definitely everything I expected. The biggest thing is the communication and learning the language, and once I can get that down 100%, I'll be ready to play."
(on what he still needs to work on the most) "I'm very comfortable. Once I get lined up and figure out what they want me to do, I can play football. But it's getting the calls and making sure that I've got my secondary where they need to be, getting everyone checked. That's the hard part for me is getting lined up, getting the calls, and making sure I'm communicating it correctly."
(on if the other players have helped him to adjust) "They have been very helpful for me. I've been able to ask a lot of questions, and they've been there to answer. I have a great group of guys rallying around me."
LB Danny Clark
(on what the defense can improve upon) "Some plays out there we could have got better technique. There's a number of things that we can get better at as far as getting more turnovers, getting to the quarterback- things we did in week one. But I think the true judge of a team is looking at us from week one to week two and seeing where we've improved."
(on what kind of challenge Carolina provides) "They have so many weapons on offense. They have two running backs that are spectacular, and (QB Jake) Delhomme is doing a good job. He's like leading the league in quarterback rating right now. And WR Steve Smith, you can't say enough about this guy; he's making plays all over the place. I think personally it's going to be us focusing on us and playing good Texan football for us to be successful."
(on what's different about Delhomme this season) "(I'm) not sure what it is. But I think that they're just playing on all cylinders early. And I think (if) a team gets off to a good start, their confidence and their momentum starts to pick up, and I think that's where we need to kind of slow that down for us."
(on the difficulties of facing a two-headed backfield) "Well, it's hard for them to get tired. So you've got one guy taking all the load, like 27 (Chiefs RB Larry Johnson) last week wanted the majority of the load. But both of these guys are talented. They bring different things to the table, and you've got to prepare for both guys."
(on how the confidence from week one helps the defense) "It's huge. Confidence is huge for our defense. It's something to build on; it's a foundation. It's only one game, so we leave it at that. But we build off what we did well and improve the things we didn't."
*S Will Demps
(on how he is going to fit in with the secondary) "Just my leadership. I've played a lot of football. I've played a lot of games. I understand that. I need to learn from these guys and get this thing going. I'm just an added piece to them. I'm not going to be a burden to them. I am just going to pick up where they are, pick their brains, and just move forward."
(on how a team won't let you leave) "You miss your flights. You're supposed to have scheduled flights to certain teams and you just say lets get this deal done and don't leave. It's exciting. It's part of the free agency process. How can you say no to this organization with this coaching staff, the coaches with Jon Hoke. It starts at the top with the owner."
(on if he was talking with Baltimore) "Yes, I was talking about going back to Baltimore and several other teams. I was very excited."
(on how he told Ravens general manger Ozzie Newsome that he was staying in Houston) "I really didn't have to. That's what the agent is for. I told Ozzie (Newsome) in a voice message thanks for the opportunity again, but I definitely want to move in a different direction and start a new mark here in Houston."
(on if he plays free or strong safety) "I've been playing both my whole career. I'm interchangeable."
TE Owen Daniels
(on seeing QB David Carr on an opposing sideline) "You know what, it'll probably be a little weird, but hopefully he's doing well. I bet it'll be good to see him."
(on how the Texans can improve this Sunday) "Just don't turn the ball over. That's the one thing we could definitely improve on. Especially not in the scoring situation that we were in two times on Saturday. That's one big thing we can improve on. If we can get some more points on the board, that'll be good."
(on where the tight ends went during the Kansas City game) "We were blocking. We were blocking hard for RB Ahman (Green) and RB Ronnie (Dayne) to run through there. It's a week-to-week thing. Different people are going to be involved every week and obviously WR Andre (Johnson) was the big thing last week and the running game was huge. I'm not concerned about it. I'll be up there ready to play."
(on the Carolina defense) "They have three Pro Bowlers up front and some good linebackers, some good corners. They're solid all around, so it's going to be a good challenge for us."
RB Ahman Green
(on his blocking responsibilities against Carolina) "It goes to basically the requirements of being a running back. We're going to have to chip and watch for the blitz and know it's coming. And we're going to see it most of the time; there ain't going to be no bones about it. With their defense and Dan (Morgan) and Na'il Diggs, the linebackers, and Kris (Jenkins) and Mike Rucker, the D-linemen, and Julius Peppers, they're going to be ready to fire off every play."
(on keeping a close eye on DE Julius Peppers during the game) "It's going to be very important. We're going to have to. No bones about it, not only from last week's game, just from their history through the years on how aggressive they are with their front four and with their linebacking crew, they're going to be coming off the edge very fast."
(on if they can afford to make the same mistakes against Carolina) "We only had one turnover, so that's good. So as long as we keep it to that, or less, basically zero turnovers on the road, as long as we do our best to play mistake free out there. Because on the road against any team, not just the Carolina Panthers but with any team, you go in with no turnovers, win the turnover battle, you have a good chance of winning the game. And that just is taking it one play at a time and knowing what's coming at you. We're looking at film, we know we're going to get very aggressive nine-in-the-box, eight-in-the-box type defenses."
S Von Hutchins
(on the problems WR Steve Smith presents) "He's an explosive receiver. Any time he gets his hands on the ball, he's trying to score. We have to try to limit his touches and limit his catches and just do our very best against him. They have a strong and talented running back corps with RB (DeShaun) Foster and RB (DeAngelo) Williams, so we have to do our best against them."
(on how comfortable the secondary is working as a group) "Everybody's been working together since OTAs, mini camps. Everybody is comfortable at all the spots. It's just a matter of adjusting to it."
(on if there is a learning curve with the new safeties that have been brought in) "Everybody has to learn all the positions and everybody has to go out and play well. There is no learning curve. Everybody should be up to par."
(on what he can do to keep QB Jake Delhomme off his game) "Just play our coverages, just play our schemes and do well in what we do. You can't get all bent out of shape over the things they do well, just do what we do well."
(on what the do what their offense is clicking on all cylinders) "They have talented players there. WR Steve Smith is a talented guy. RB (DeShaun) Foster and RB (DeAngelo) Williams are talented guys. We just have to play well. We have to learn our sets, our run sets and pass sets, and just play well against them."
WR Andre Johnson
(on the Panthers defense) "They have a good, fast defense. Their defensive front, they have one of the best fronts in the league. It's going to be a big test for us."
(on if he thinks WR Steve Smith is one of the top receivers in the NFL) "Yes, I think he's one of the top guys. He's a heck of a receiver. I know he's not a big guy, but he goes out and play big. I just hope he doesn't have a big day against us."
(on what makes WR Steve Smith so good because he doesn't have the size) "He's fast and he's tough. You know he has heart. Even though he's a small guy, he goes across the middle and makes the tough catches and things like that. What more can you ask from him?"
*(on if it will be strange to see QB David Carr on the other sideline) "It's a part of the business. It's something that happens. He was a teammate and I enjoyed him while he was here. He is with Carolina now and we just wish him the best."
(on if QB David Carr can help their defense game plan) "I don't know. You can know what you want to know, but you have to stop it on the field on Sunday. I used to have a coach in high school that told me, 'I don't care if they know what we're doing. If they can't stop it then they just can't stop it.' They have to go out and stop us on Sunday. He can tell them whatever he wants."
WR Jacoby Jones
(on his first regular season game) "I don't think it was as fast as they said it was, but the intensity picked up. They were hitting a lot harder, I'll tell you that."
(on not having as much room to run against Kansas City limited him) "No, not at all. They stopped me pretty well."
(on what he learned from his first NFL game) "You have to stay focused all the time, stay humble, and keep your concentration."
(on the biggest difference between preseason and regular season) "Like I said, I think the intensity picked up a lot."
(on what way the intensity picked up) "It's the first game. All of the starters are on the field all four quarters. You're in a nice environment. You're just ready to go."
(on if he was nervous) "No, anxious."
(on if it was easier after making his first catch) "Yes, it was smooth sailing after that."
(on if he thought he would be able to do the same things he did in the preseason) "I went into the game think I was, but I should have been patient on punt returns. I was trying too hard to make a play."
DE N.D. Kalu
(on if playing with a cast will limit him) "I hope not too much, depending on how I play. If it's passing downs, it shouldn't limit me, but if it's running downs, I just have to make sure my hand is strong enough to actually grab somebody."
(on if he thinks this is an important game for DE Mario Williams) "Yes, he's playing against the guy they try to compare him too. If he can outplay him, that will be a big game for him. Not only that, but for him to two great back-to-back games, it will really get that monkey off his back."
(on how he describes DE Julius Peppers) "He's very big. He's very athletic. He has actually come to Houston to work out so I get to see him up close. He really is a freak of nature to be that big and move that fast and that swift. I see why he makes all those plays on the field."
(on QB Jake Delhomme) "Right now, he's the best quarterback in the league and we've seen it on the film. We know we're really going to have our work cut out for us. It's going to be a bigger challenge then what we had last week. We're not walking around here patting ourselves on the back because we know were looking a real high-powered offense. They have one of the best receivers, statistically the best quarterback on the field, and two great running backs. We know it's going to be a big challenge for us."
(on what problems having two running backs causes) "Usually, you know how to prepare for one. You just get another person in the mix to prepare for and you have to study both guys so it takes time in the class room to get a feel for both guys. They are both real good, they produce, and we just have to gang tackle."
WR Jerome Mathis
(on why he seems happier this season) "Last year, I was frustrated, dealing with the injury. But now I'm healthy, back out there practicing and actually playing on Sundays now. It's fun. Back to playing football again."
(on if being able to contribute makes all the difference in the world) "Yeah, it makes a whole lot of difference; makes you feel like you're involved. When you're hurt, you're taking more mental reps than anything, but now that you're out there going through the motion, it makes you feel like you're involved a whole lot."
(on what it's meant that the coaches have stuck by him) "It's meant a whole lot. Let's me know that they believe in me, when I almost gave up on myself. They pulled me through and let me know that I still have what it takes to play at this level."
(on how close he came to giving up) "It was close. Just being frustrated, day to day, wondering when that foot was going to heal, then when the hamstring was going to get back right. It was tough. (But) I wouldn't allow myself to quit that easy."
G Chester Pitts
(on the reality of seeing QB David Carr on the Carolina sideline) "It was weird just the day he left. That's who I'd been with for five years. He was drafted number one and I was like 50 after him or something – but nobody's keeping up with the numbers. But I mean it won't be anything big. Dave and I are cool, and it's all business."
(on if Carr can help Carolina game plan) "I guess he could, but I don't know. So much has changed, and the game plan things change week to week. I guess some of the core stuff, maybe, but he's probably busy learning his new offense and not really trying to remember what we did here."
(on if he's excited about the signing of his former college teammate S Will Demps) "It's another San Diego State guy. We're three strong in the locker room now. Only the Golden Domers (Notre Dame) had three, but now we're all tied up. So two years in a row with three San Diego State guys. Three Miami guys? They don't count."
CB Dunta Robinson
(on facing WR Steve Smith) "It's going to be a great challenge. Steve Smith's probably if not the best one of the better receivers in this league. So it's going to be a lot of fun trying to match my skills against a guy like that. It's going to be a challenge, heck of a challenge. It's going to be good against good. It'll be a fun challenge."
(on if he gets more pumped up for a challenge like this) "Definitely. Whenever you play against the better guys - I have Steve Smith this week, then WR Reggie (Wayne) and WR Marvin (Harrison) next week - any time you're facing these guys, you prepare yourself as hard as you possibly can because you want to do good in these situations. So you definitely get pumped up more. I probably will lose (more) sleep than I did last week going against Kansas City; I probably won't sleep too much this week going against Steve Smith because I know it's going to be a tough challenge for me. But I'm up for it."
(on how the Texans' coaches play their defensive backs) "We really don't match up too much. We play right and left (corner) here. I did a little bit of lining up on guys last year; I think I lined up on WR Randy Moss the whole game and there was another receiver I can't really remember. And I did pretty good against those guys, but I haven't faced Steve Smith yet. I think I've played against every other great receiver in this league, and it'll be my first time going up against Steve Smith, so it'll be exciting and I'm really looking forward to this challenge."
(on how Smith performs so well every week) "He's just a great receiver. It's just God-given talent and ability, and he works. If you watch the guy on film, he doesn't take plays off. If it's a run play, he's blocking the DB as hard as he can. Sometimes that frustrates DBs and it can kind of take you out of your game. So you just can't relax. You've just got to go out there and play hard and respect the man across the field from you."
T Ephraim Salaam (on the challenge the Panthers present on defense) "They are a big strong defense up front. They've got excellent athletic ability outside, and two space eaters inside. So we definitely have our work cut out for us this week."
(on how strange it will be to see QB David Carr on the opposing sideline) "This is not my first team I've been on, so I've looked over across a lot of sidelines and seen a lot of ex-players. It's just the business."
(on how much Carr's knowledge can help Carolina) "Well sometimes it helps, sometimes it doesn't. We've still got to go out there and play. No matter what he tells them, they still have to stop us, we still have to stop them."
QB Matt Schaub
(on what's different about Carolina's defense) "Specifically about Carolina, they are very aggressive. They are very tough up front. That's where it all starts for them, their defensive front seven. They are very athletic and can move around and make a lot of plays and be very disruptive. We just have to be sharp, on top of our game with our assignments and up font and our protections and our blocking schemes."
(on if he face Carolina when he played in Atlanta) "I played in a couple games. One was mop up duty. The other one was towards the end I played a bunch, so in a couple of them."
(on seeing the Panthers on tape more then anyone) "Yes, I've faced them two times the past three years. I'm used to what they do and their schemes and their personnel especially. It's a team that I know very fairly well, but they are very aggressive and you really have to be on top of your game and prepare during the week to play a tough physical game."
(on what's different about this team) "I think the big thing this year for them is they're healthy. Last year, they got bit by the injury bug a little bit. They're playing very well. They do some different things. They move around a lot and they shift into different defenses and play different coverages. It's going to be a lot of adjusting on the run for us as the game goes along."
(on dealing with DE Julius Peppers) "I think you have to account for him wherever he is. You have to identify where he is in the formation, but you can't really just key on him because they have other guys that can make plays. They've got four guys up front that are all tough, physical, impact players. You definitely have to know where he is and you have to go after him. You don't want to shy away from him. At the same time, you have to execute whatever play is called."
(on if it feels different this week now that you have your first win) "I think it was big for us to come out at home and take care of our own business here at home against the Chiefs last week and win that game. That was big for us, for our confidence to get the first one under our belt. We have to put that behind us because it is a 16-week grind. We're moving into week two here and we have to go looking for that second one."
(on his teammates confidence in him as a leader) "It does a lot for our confidence because we didn't play the best game, especially offensively. We left a lot of points out there, hurt ourselves with turnovers and penalties. We have a lot of things to clean up but if we can go out and make those corrections this week in practice and have a perfect week practice wise and in our preparation, we can go out there and play much better this week."
(on how big the running game is this week) "The running game is going to be big every week. It's going to be an emphasis and to get that going that just sets up some play actions in our passing game. We got that going a little bit last week in the 10 minute drive where we were just running the ball and moving it down the field. That gave us a lot of confidence to say we can do this. We just need to concentrate on that because, week in and week out the run game is going to be very important."
(on if he thinks he will need the running game to slow down the Panthers' front four) "Well, I think we're going to need it just to help us use the clock, keep their offense off the field, keep our defense fresh, and convert first downs. If we can run the ball, be good and third down, and be good in the red zone, we should put ourselves in a good position."
(on if winning on the road is the next step this team has to make) "Definitely, I think if we can go, it's a tough place to play against a very good team early in the year. We're going to have to go in there poised and know our game plan in and out so we can go out and just cut it loose and play ball."
(on if he thinks it will be an advantage because they have QB David Carr) "I think any time you have a player that has gone from one team to another and you face that other team, you're going to know a little bit and be to help out in some of the game planning, especially with personnel. You'll know the personnel a little bit and what guys do, you still have to go out and execute it between the lines on Sunday. That's what it comes down to."
(on what it felt like personally to have a good game last week) "I meant a lot to go out and get that win. The bottom line, that's the most important thing is to get the win at the end of the day. I felt that I could have played a little bit better. There were a few throws or few decisions that I had made that I could have executed the play a little bit better. I think at the end of the day, the thing that I was pleased about was some of the bad things that happened we turned around and were able to make them positive and ended up bouncing back from the adversity."
(on if he proved something to himself last week) "I think so. I had that tough interception early on but I came back and hit WR Andre (Johnson) for the touchdown. That's just showing that our team as a whole has the mentality where if something bad happens, we get back in the huddle, we go, and we execute the next play."
(on if he always had the ability to shake off a bad play) "I think that's developed over time. In college, there were some rough spots. When you're first starting out in college as a youngster, you get some bumps in the road and its how you deal with it. I learned from coaches and watching veteran players at that age that you can't let that affect you, especially at this position because you have to go back in the huddle and make the guys believe on the next play you're going to do the right thing and good things will happen for you. That happened over time."
(on what he has to do to stay ahead of the curve as teams start to game plan for him) "It does. I thin this game, not only do you scout your opponents each week, but you also do a little bit of self scouting of what you do and what you've shown and your tendencies. You have to look back at that and see how you can do things a little bit differently to counteract what defense might end up adjusting to what you do."
(on how much fun it is to have his own team) "It's a lot of fun. When you play this game, you have to have fun, or else why are you going to do it. If you can't go out everyday smile and laugh and have a good time with the guys and prepare and be ready to go on Sunday, you shouldn't be doing it. It's definitely a lot of fun."
(on if he thinks the team's conditioning played a part in holding the ball for 13 minutes in the fourth quarter) "I think it helped out being out there at noon. It's hot and humid outside there and it definitely conditioned us to be out there during training camp and during the season to be prepared to play four quarters of football. Up until Sunday, no teams has done that and we were able to go out and execute to grind the clock out there in the fourth quarter and stay on the field. That gives us a lot of confidence going into this week."
(on this miscommunications on the offensive line) "It was a little bit of a surprise. We had some penalties up there and some miscommunications but it was the first game and we're going to clean those things up. We've already discussed them as a unit and we're going to go out and clean it up today at practice and we'll have it ready to go come this Sunday."
(on calming down G Chester Pitts) "There's always going to be things like that occur when you're in competition and in the heat of the battle, they get magnified that much more. Bottom line is we were getting down to the crucial part of the game where it was going to be decided there late in the third quarter and then going into the fourth. We had to settle those guys up front down to concentrate on their responsibilities and what we were about to do getting the ball back and having to grind the clock out."
(on if he has to ride the teams emotions) "A little bit, but more-or-less I think as a quarterback, you have to maintain that level headedness and that even keel. When guys get too high you make sure that they know the game's not over and when there's some low times or some bad spots, you know to pick them up a little bit and keep them at an even keel so you can go out and execute the next play."
DE Mario Williams
(on how it feels to be named AP Player of the Week) "It's my first time ever having something like that. It's amazing. Hopefully, not just me, but hopefully our defense sees a lot of that."
(on how it feels to have a 'break though' game) "It's still the same. There is still work to be done. There is still a lot to learn, a lot do. I just have to get back to work."
(on gaining confidence) "I'm just going out every day working hard. You want moments like that. You want things like this to happen, not just me, but for the whole defense, the whole team. Basically, you just take it from here and you keep going."
(on where this honor ranks in all the awards you have already won) "Number one. To be recognized over the whole league is one thing that, there are a lot of guys here. But, when you look at it, there are not a lot. There are not that many people fortunate enough to play this great game. To have this opportunity is phenomenal."
(on people know that you were successful last week and at a high level) "Like I said, that was last week. We still have to go back to work today and get better."
(on getting to go back and play in North Carolina) "It's going to be different. It's going to be the first I'm going back playing as the opponent. It's something that I look forward to doing and have a good time with."