STEELERS at JAGUARS SUNDAY, OCTOBER 5, 2008 ALLTEL STADIUM -- KICKOFF -- 8:15 P.M. POST-GAME QUOTES
HEAD COACH MIKE TOMLIN**
Great night for the Steelers to come into a hostile environment against a very good football team and find a way to win. I liked the attitude of the men all week. Our injury situation was well-documented. The guys didn't look to it as a potential excuse, they embraced the challenge. We had a theme this week, 'the more you can do' and we called on a lot of people to do that. Guys stepped outside their lanes if you will and delivered, delivered big. This is a great team win. Glad to get out of here. Sustained some bumps and bruises along the way, but thankfully we get a week off because it's much needed.
(on if the win was the most satisfying as a head coach) "Man, I love them all truth be known. This was the most satisfying one because this is the one you are feeling right now. I'm sure there will be more satisfying ones down the road provided we go get them.
*QB BEN ROETHLISBERGER *(on the win going into bye week)" It's going to be a good time this week, not just for me, but for a lot of the guys. A lot of guys got beat up, but we kind of knew that was going to happen. I knew it was going to be a physical fight and it was just that. So the bye comes at a good time for us to get some rest."
(on the game-winning drive) "It was great. You have to give a lot of credit to those guys – up front, the tight ends, receivers, everybody. We ran the no huddle almost the without even using the count and without me even talking – really. A lot of credit goes to them – especially that last drive with (Mewelde) Moore on the big run -guys making plays. It's always fun."
(on holding the ball in the pocket) "It's that double-edge sword. You live by it and die by it. Sometimes it helps you, and other times it hurts you. Tonight it helped in the time that we needed it. "
(on Moore's performance tonight at running back) "I knew he would be able to come in and be just fine. We all had confidence in him that he could get it done and he showed it tonight. It was fun to see and watch him work."
LB JAMES HARRISON**
(on emotional win) "We came out here to win and that's what we did. We knew it was going to be a physical game and it would come down to the last quarter. We had to go out there and not have a letdown. We did what we came here to do."
HEAD COACH JACK DEL RIO**
"A whale of a football game. These teams have gotten after each other the last couple of years and played some close ballgames. We needed to come out in the third quarter and give ourselves a chance to get back into the game and do some things to give our football team a chance. We were able to get that done and then really through the whole second half we were doing a heck of a job, and there was one play out there that was very special that their quarterback made at the end. The guy's a great ???. Somehow he got his arm out of the way and got the ball completely out of there. That was a heck of a football play. That's special. I think you have to tip your hat to Big Ben (Roethlisberger) for getting that play down there. That was really the difference. We don't give up that play, it's a probably a little bit different feeling right now but a heck of a play. He made it. We didn't. The guys came out and did what we had to do in the second half to have a chance. It wasn't the kind of start we wanted. We started with a some things, made a few adjustments and did a little better in the second half and a good football game. Just I don't get to have that big grin up here I'd like to have. But we're sitting here 2-3 with a big game on the road next week. So we have to come back and get to work in the morning and do the corrections and get our treatment, do our weightlifting, all the things we have to do as professionals and go back to work. So we'll absorb this one over the next 24 hours and then get ready for the Broncos."
(on whether he knew Jeff Reed had a groin injury at the end of the game and whether it would have made a difference in defensive approach?) "No. We actually were hoping that Ben was pretty sore and the ball was going to be handed off. He was sore, I'm sure, but he was able to make that real nice touch pass at the end there on the fade. And like I said earlier in that drive that was a tremendous individual effort to keep that thing going. But we played hard, tough. I think one of the big differences in the game, they really totally eliminated our running game, they really did. They did a good job clogging things up and never letting anything pop. I don't know what the longest gain of the night was, but it wasn't long. And certainly that's one of the things we're pretty good at is popping, at least getting a few good runs in there. We weren't able to do that. You've got to give them credit there, and then their quarterback was outstanding at the end in crunch time. So, two football teams, like I said earlier, proud football teams that have gone at each other. The games are usually close, usually very entertaining. I just don't get to smile tonight."
(there was a play earlier that kind of set the tone when Roethlisberger was rushed by Henderson and still was able to get the pass off. How frustrating was that to see that two or three times tonight?) "Yeah, he does that on the tape you watch, too, getting ready for the game. I mentioned leading up to this ballgame all week that one of the things he does best is extend plays. His body is going to take a beating. I don't know how long he's going to be able to do it, but he's got the ability, kind of a horse back there and he doesn't go down easy and so you have to give him credit. But we see it on the tape. When you're watching tape getting ready for these guys, you see him, he's taking some shots and he's somehow finding a way to shrug the guy, slip a guy, fight through it and still gets the ball off and it's part of what he does."
(you're going to see a lot of big quarterbacks throughout the year, that are tough to bring down.) "Well, you have to check back week to week I guess. Certainly, it was no surprise."
(on going two weeks in a row without a turning the ball over) "That's always good, to protect the football. One of the things they do is feast on your mistakes and one of the things we knew we had to do coming in here is not allow them to do that. There were several keys to the game. That was one of them that gave us a chance, and we're always looking for that. We want to protect the football. We want to be able to make plays, score points but always protect the football. It's too valuable to give it up. It was a great job early in the game. I thought it would give us a chance to stay in the game if we made a play defensively to score and put points on the board for us with Rashean returning that interception, and that was a big play. That kind of bought us some time to fight through an otherwise not a real good first half defensively."
(did they do anything special to stop the run?) "No, it's not scheme. They whipped blocks and made plays. There wasn't any magic out there; they won the line of scrimmage, they shed and swarmed and tackled well. I didn't see many missed tackles tonight on their defensive unit, particularly with their run defense. A pretty good effort."
* JAGUARS PLAYERS*
QB DAVID GARRARD
(on team's confidence going into the last drive) "We really felt confident again. Everybody believed in one another. They made some good plays defensively. They broke up some of those passes. We got to do a better job of getting completions and trying to move the chains. It was just a hard fought game and they just played a little bit better."
*RB FRED TAYLOR
(on the atmosphere at the stadium) "The stadium was packed. It was probably the loudest I heard since the 98-99 teams. That is the type of stuff we need every week. Hopefully they end in W's as opposed to L's."
*WR MIKE WALKER
(on the offensive struggles) "We really didn't have the ball. I think we only had the ball one time in the first quarter alone. We just couldn't find the rhythm."
(on David Garrard's play) "Outstanding. David delivered the ball perfectly every route I ran. I am sure the other receivers feel the same way. The ball was on time, in the right spot and catchable. He did what he was supposed to do and extra."
WR MATT JONES
(on the ball being thrown his way on big plays) "That is cool that David (Garrard) has that confidence in you. You want to catch the ball when it comes to you in that type of situation."
*DE QUENTIN GROVES *
(on the toughness of Ben Roethlisberger) "He's real tough. He's a guy that's top heavy. Two times tonight we thought we had him and he still completed the pass."
*CB RASHEAN MATHIS *
(on the loss against Pittsburgh) "It was a hard fought effort. We left everything on the field. We have to be happy the way we played effort wise. Ben (Roethlisberger) is an amazing player; he makes plays that other quarterbacks probably wouldn't, and in that last drive he definitely made some great plays."
(on making plays in the second half) "The second half we played football the way we would normally play football. We really didn't give them much that second half and that's something to grow on."
*DE PAUL SPICER *
(on the lack of making plays the entire game) "You can't have a good half of football in this league and expect to win. We came out the second half and came out better than we did the first half. The first half we allowed Ben to do some things to hurt us. We made adjustments at halftime and we came back and put some more pressure on him and he's one of the best. When it comes to guys around him with guys hitting him, he finds a way to get the ball out."