Coach Mike Tomlin: Good evening. You got to give credit to New England. They beat us soundly tonight in all phases of the game, quite honestly. Our guys fought to try to make it close there in the end, but it was a good game played by those guys. They made more consistent plays, more significant plays. We got to get better. We weren’t as good tonight to compete with these guys, and we acknowledge that. We need to look at it in great detail tomorrow and make the necessary corrections and hopefully learn from this experience, and be better for it when given the opportunity if we can fight and put ourselves in the position to play in this kind of game again. It was a big game tonight. Of course we didn’t come through. You got to acknowledge that those guys did and tip your hat to them, and hopefully we’ll learn from this. From an injury standpoint Hines Ward sustained a concussion. He will go through his normal battery of tests after sustaining a concussion. We’ll see where we are in terms of next week. Crezdon Butler had a quad strain. He was unable to return. Lawrence Timmons had a hip pointer. We’ll see where he is tomorrow. Arnaz Battle had a shoulder injury of some kind. Other than that we’re fine. We’ll lick our wounds and move forward.
Was the first half a period of adjustment to playing without Hines?
Yeah, but that’s always going to be the case when a guy like Hines goes down. That’s no excuse for our performance. We are capable of better than we displayed.
Re: Defense looking flat:
No, they [Their Offense] were very efficient. They made quick decisions, made accurate throws and good catches. We weren’t able to get consistent pressure. We weren’t close enough to some of the underneath throws to tackle and make insignificant gains. They ran after a few of them. They got some out in the flat. It’s just not good enough football when playing against a team as well as they played tonight.
Re: Offensive success in the fourth quarter:
Offenses that are behind are capable of moving the ball. So I’m not going to read too much into that. They beat us soundly tonight.
Re: Offensive line play:
We all lost tonight. We all did, including myself.
CB Ike Taylor
“It’s plain and simple. We just got our butt whooped. That’s what it all boils down to. Nobody is making excuses. Tonight we got our butt whooped.”
How did that happen?
“It happened. Just like life, things happen. It’s all in how we respond. But tonight we didn’t play like we wanted to play. They came in here and they handed it to us.”
It seemed pretty emotional. Tom Brady had that spike after he scored and they kind of kept coming.
“We can’t worry about what they do. We can only control what we do. Tonight wasn’t good enough at all.”
Does this take a hit for you guys? Don’t you want to be the best in the conference?
“You’re right. We did take a hit. No excuses. We have to come back tomorrow and do what we need to do, feed off of this and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”
WR Emmanuel Sanders
“I was happy to see them starting to come to me. It was definitely a couple of steps forward. I’m looking forward to next Sunday.”
S Ryan Clark
Ike [Taylor] said you got your butt whipped. Is there any other way to describe it?
“No. They beat us. They were a better team. They executed better and were more physical. They did what they wanted to do basically. You know that coming in – [that] they are going to play well, they are going to play smart. They are going to be patient. When you play a defense like ours, you take a four yard pass or a five yard pass and try to turn it into more. That’s kind of their game. Tom [Brady] executed extremely well. [He] made very good throws and was smart with the ball. We just have to get better. It’s just one game. But it’s a game we can learn a lot from.”
How does that happen? How is he able to execute as well as they did?
“You’d have to ask him. He did the job. We didn’t make the plays that we needed to make, but he didn’t really give us many opportunities. It’s not the first time you’ve seen Tom Brady operate at that high level. You don’t get called the best, or always in the argument for the best quarterback in the NFL if this is the first time that you’ve done that. But you know how it is when somebody does something against us. The sky is falling and we anoint that guy Baby Jesus. But Tom went out and did what Tom is supposed to do. And we didn’t come to play. We didn’t make the plays.”
It doesn’t worry you at all?
“I can’t be worried. You can’t start dredging up things from the past. This is one night and this is one night we need to get better from. It sucks to lose any time. If we’d have lost 3-2, or losing like this. Obviously, for our defense, it hurts more because we’re not used to playing this way. We’re not used to giving up yardage the way we did or giving up the scores in that manner. But you have to come back and continue to play. Yeah, we’re [angry]. We’re upset. But we just have to come back to work tomorrow the same that we did when we were winning.”
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