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Buccaneers Postgame Quotes

HEAD COACH RAHEEM MORRIS

(Opening remarks)
"Good evening. [It's a] heavyweight battle whenever you play the Saints. They're a big-time opponent. Those guys come out and they are ready to play—we talked about it early in the week, said Drew Brees was going to end the game with 300 yards and he did. You can never give up, you never stop playing with these guys and our guys did a nice job of fighting and staying in the fight, maintaining the lead and getting the win."

(On the turnover differential being the winning statistic)
"It has been for the last couple years.  I couldn't beat those guys in yardage, it almost seems impossible.  [The Saints] go out and they get production, they get yardage, they keep fighting. They do a really nice job with that, so, for us to go out and take advantage of our opportunities and let technique and opportunity meet is what we have to do."

(On if he feels redeemed following last week's game)
"No, no, it's not a redemption thing.  I had a lot of confidence in this team of bouncing back, and I know you guys wrote us off for dead last week. But I got a lot of confidence in these guys bouncing back.  I know this is a tough team. They are young, we didn't show up last week and this week they are ready to go.  We had a nice preparation week, challenged them, put them in pads, went out there and hit a little bit and got ready to go with our next man up mentality and theory and went out there and played."

(On the team's reaction following last week's game)
"You know, I got a bunch of tough guys on this football team and no matter what happens, anybody may be considered a star. It's always going to be next man theory. Whether it's Adam Hayward going in at mike [linebacker] for us, or whether it's Quincy Black having to fulfill the nickel role again for us, or whether it's T-Jack [CB Tanard Jackson] coming back, these guys know how to move on to the next game."

(On if he expected CB Tanard Jackson to play well after a year away)
"Yes.  I absolutely did.  That's why we put him out there.  You know Tanard is different, he's been different since he's been here, we've known that.  He started from day one, he's started every game he's put a Buccaneer helmet on and, hopefully, he'll continue to do that."

(On RB Ernest Graham)
"Insurance Graham. I mean we can't say enough about him.  If we ask him to play fullback, he plays full back, if we ask him to play tailback, he plays tail back. Put him at tight end, he plays tight end, put him on special teams, he plays special teams. He just does anything you ask him to do. He was almost a linebacker the week before.  He just does it, he gets it, he loves football."

(On the swing from 45-point loss to division lead)
"For us, it was on our mindset right away, we knew we were at 3-2 and we knew what they were, and we knew we had the ability to take over the lead, being 2-0 in the division.  Going out and winning our division, that's what we said we wanted to do right from the beginning, that's been our mentality.  You guys know about my theory of mentality before reality and that's what we did today."

(On the defense)
"We're streaky I guess, we're like John Starks, we come out hot some days and some days we're not.  But tonight we are on fire and back in, we got the hop-step we've been missing the last couple of weeks, and that's what we've got to be. We've got to be opportunistic, and that's what we do.  You know stats are for losers, except interceptions."

QB JOSH FREEMAN

(On game's expectations)
"We prepare every week to come out and win games. We know it's a divisional game, so it's pretty important but we expect to win every week. We know we have a good team, we know if we play up to our potential we're going to have a chance to win and today we proved that. Our defense came out and played great. Offensively, we were able to get some points on the board early and at the end, it was great to see the defense really step up because you know Drew Brees is going to make a push regardless. But our guys played a great game."

(On playing up to potential and RB Earnest Graham's play)
"No, today we didn't play close to our potential. You know, we played a good game, a game good enough to win but we left a lot of yards and a lot of points on the field offensively speaking. I mean, our defense played great but we could play better. But we'll say Earnest Graham played a fantastic game. He just did his thing, especially down in that four-minute [offense]. He was reading his blocks, making those cuts, and allowed us to get in our victory formation."

(On being at the top of the NFC South)
"We've always been a confident bunch. Coming in, like I said, we expect to go out and play well and we expect to go out and win. We're a young team, we're a good team but at the same time, it comes down to preparation and execution and if we can keep that at a high level. It's week six, nothing's decided at this point, and every win is extremely valuable. So, to get that win is just one step forward in the direction, the goal that we're headed to."

(On bouncing back from loss at San Francisco)
"Really that's just always our mentality. You know, we don't buy into all the hype, we took a step back [last week] and we just prepare and do everything exactly the same. We have, throughout the week, a standard operation procedure as far as from the standpoint of preparation, film study, and practice. We do the exact same thing every week and go out and try to play our best on Sundays."
"Our defense played great and gave us a chance to win. When your defense does that, you got to be happy. With three interceptions, especially at the end—that's huge. I think Coach Raheem [Morris] called a great game, I think our guys came out and executed, I think Tanard Jackson played extremely well."

(On the return of S Tanard Jackson)
"He's a guy in our locker room that everybody loves. He's a great player, and, obviously, he [was previously] suspended. I won't say it hurt our team, but, at the same time, he's a leader on our team and a leader on our defense, and a damn good player. Having him back is tremendous."

LB QUINCY BLACK

(On his interception in the end zone)
"Man to man defense. You know, Drew Brees doesn't make those kind of mistakes too often. [Tampa Bay was in the] right place, right time, made the play, [and] took a knee. "

(On playing following a loss last week)
"Well, you know, all that stuff it doesn't matter. We won the game. We got a game in London next week and we have to prepare for that."

(On the turnovers)
"[We] created turnovers at home. The crowd was going, it was an exciting atmosphere and happy to get away with the W."

WR ARRELIOUS BENN

(On the offense)
"We had a rough week last week in San Fran, and we came back. It started in practice, you know, with a day one. Each day we carried it over to the game [tonight]—us having great practices and us just transferring it over to the game. We knew what we did wrong. We just had to bounce back and just get back to playing Buc football."

(On the importance of the game)
"Oh yeah it's definitely important. It's a divisional game; it's kind of like a playoff game. [The] Saints are a very good team, we play them twice a year, and we're gonna have to play even a better game the next time we play them. For us to come out and beat the Saints and Drew Brees is great, and we know we played the game that we needed to play."

(On Buccaneers RB Ernest Graham)
"That was big. We knew Ernest [Graham] was going to do that. Ernest is a guy that we depend on. We look up to him. He's a leader on and off the field, and he's a great guy on and off the field."

CB RONDE BARBER

(On bouncing back from last week's loss to San Francisco)
"What happened last week? Well, it wasn't us. It didn't feel like us. This was more our type of game. We're familiar with the Saints and they're familiar with us. We gave them some different looks here and there. We can feel comfortable out there playing situational ball."

(On being a resilient young team)
"Yeah, Raheem [Morris] said it last week. Good teams take that beating and find a way to bounce back and we did. We had a great week of practice, and, if you ask Rah, some of what happened last week started on Wednesday and Thursday, so we definitely had a more energized practice this week. We were on the details of what these guys [Saints] do, and, like I said, we're familiar with these guys. [We] didn't try to beat ourselves. I felt like we beat ourselves last week [against San Francisco]."

(On the matchup with Saints TE Jimmy Graham)
"He is by far their most targeted player, and you know why. He's tough to deal with no matter who's on him. Whether it's me or Sean J [Jones] or any of the linebackers. He's a basketball player, you know. He posts up and takes jump balls. [You] just have to be prepared for his catches, and he had some. We were ready for him; we knew he would get [targeted by Brees]." 

RB EARNEST GRAHAM

(On the impact of last week's loss on today's win)
"We feel that wasn't us last week, for whatever reason. We saw that on film, and we left it on the field, but we left it there in San Francisco. We came out and we knew we had a chance today to punch first place [in the division].We had the Saints coming in. We didn't have time to sulk about [the loss] and that's really one of the traits of our team. When things happen within a given drive, within a given game, we are able to put things behind us."

(On being a starter)
"No, I don't focus on anything; I don't feel entitled to anything. You know, I just count my blessings and I'm happy I play football. I never felt entitled to be the starting running back or to anything. When you feel that way and just handle your work and handle your career, you want to be able to step up and be ready when it's time, because you know you not dealing with sulking over certain things. I'm not like that."

WR MIKE WILLIAMS

(On the win)
"It feels great. When you get a win, it feels great. It doesn't matter how we get the win. It doesn't matter how we do it."

(On the impact of the run attack from Earnest Graham on the passing game)
"I've been telling him all week, 'Come on man, get that old body moving.' I've been playing with him and stuff. He got it moving today, it helped a lot. Got the passing game going. With him doing that, it helped us a lot."

(On the receiving corps)
"We always put it upon ourselves. They always say to us that we are the drivers of the bus; the whole team tells us that. When we say our whole team is on the bus, the receivers are the drivers. So if we got no drivers then the bus doesn't move. So we got to get it going, and that's how we always looked at it."

CB E.J. BIGGERS

(On his interception)
"We needed it. I mean, it was a long time coming—we had one [in the] first game. We needed one."

(On the win)
"It was a division opponent, a rivalry game, for first place in the division. It was a chance to take first place in the division, and that's all that needed to be said."

(On going forward having to make the trip to London)
"We'll watch the film, catch some mistakes. [We] left some plays out there on the field. It's going to be like that in every game. Something's going to happen that you could correct and get better at. We are going to do that and get better and keep growing as a team and as a defense."

P MICHAEL KOENEN

(On tonight's game)
"The coverage teams did good. Offensively, we moved the ball. It was just a good night."

(On the importance of field position)
"It's huge. Our coverage teams did a good job all night limiting [RB Darren] Sproles. It's big when an offense has to start inside their 20, let alone inside their 10, consistently, so they have to drive a long field. It's big."

(On playing a big part in the win)
"It feels good to get this win. It feels good to see everybody smiling. It feels good to do it at home, to see our offense move the ball like they did, and our defense getting turnovers. It was just a great night."

(On being 4-2)
"It feels good, but you have to flush the good feeling just like you flush the bad feeling and reset for next week. We'll enjoy it for a day, get on a plane, and then it's back to business."

WR PRESTON PARKER

(On the win)
"We went out there, everyone played together, played with one mind, and that's what we did."

(On the effectiveness of the offense)
"Coach [Greg] Olson wanted us to go out there, score first, score fast, and he said that we'd be able to handle them and let the defense go out there. And that's what we did. We went out there, scored fast, and got some points on the board early."

(On his second-quarter touchdown)
"It was an option route. I have the option to go out or the option to take it up the seam, and I just crossed the space and Josh [Freeman] saw me, made eye contact, he drilled it, I caught it, and I was in for six [points]."

(On the punt return in the second half)
"Anything to help the team. That's part of the game, getting hit hard. It kind of amped me up a little bit, so it was good to just get that W."

S TANARD JACKSON

(On being back)
"It feels great. Words can't even express how I'm feeling right now. It's just an emotional day for me from the start. I'm just glad we got this win, that's the biggest thing."

(On the interception)
"It was big because it helped this team. Any big plays we get gives momentum to this team. I'm just grateful. Grateful to get another opportunity to be back in the locker room with these guys."

(On getting more comfortable as the game went on)
"Yeah, muscle memory. After that first drive, that first play, actually, and first hit, all of that was out the window, I was back in my element."

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