New Orleans Saints Coach Dennis Allen postgame quotes
On what went wrong in the game:
"Way too many missed opportunities in this game. We had plenty of chances. Red zone continues to jump up and bite us. Missed a couple field goals today, which is uncharacteristic. Defensively I thought we played poorly in the first half. They were better than we were in the first half of the game, that's for certain. Gave up too many explosive plays. We intercepted the ball and turned it right back over to them. We had the ball on the 41-yard line. So just way too many mistakes and way too many missed opportunities. And we have to – I told the team in there we've got to do a better job of executing our jobs. If we're not executing our jobs, then we need to find somebody else that can execute those jobs. Doesn't matter who you are."
On miscommunication on the offense
"There were some things at the line of scrimmage that we missed, more from a route concept than from a protection standpoint."
On guard Andrus Peat's active status
"Look, he was dealing with a groin, so he was going to be the emergency eighth offensive linemen in the game."
On why miscommunication within the offense occurs at this stage
"I wish I had the answer to that because, if I had the answer, we'd have it fixed. We've just got to continue to keep looking at it, continue to keep working at it. It's an area that has to get better. It was good last week. It wasn't good this week. At the end of the day, that ends up costing you games. I felt like we were able to move the ball. I thought we moved the ball efficiently. I still feel like, in that we're moving the ball, and then all of a sudden, we'll have some negative plays. I think we had a couple of holding calls down in the red area, which got us into first and long or second and long situations, and it's hard to overcome that. I think penalties down there were a big deal. The first drive we end up getting a negative play. As we get into kind of scoring position, or at least close to scoring position, we get a negative play which puts us at second and 14. We end up trying a long field goal there. Yeah, there's certainly a lot of things we have to clean up."
On the momentum swing caused by the interception and fumble
"That's a big momentum change in the game. Again, we're going to take over possession around the 41-yard line, something like that, in their territory. Instead, we give them the ball right back, and they're able to kind of go down and capitalize on it. So, yeah, I thought that was a big play in the game."
On kicker Blake Grupe's missed field goal
"I'm not sure exactly what happened. Obviously, he pulled it left. I think he just missed the kick."
On the Texans' success running against the Saints defense in the first half
"I don't think we did a good enough job getting off blocks. I think they ran extremely hard. I think their backs ran extremely hard. I think they did a good job of blocking. I don't think we executed like we're capable of executing. They were better than us in the first half from an offensive standpoint against our defense. We had to get in at halftime and talk about a couple of things. I thought our guys played better in the second half."
On the Saints' offensive approach in the final drive
"It's kind of a little bit of both. I think there were some opportunities there. We got a lot of pressure there at the end of the game. So, I thought we had some chances, particularly the ball over to our right in the back of the end zone over there to [Rashid] Shaheed. I thought we had a chance there. Again, we weren't on the same page in terms of what we were doing there. Yeah, that part of the passing game has to be better in terms of -- look, every team in the league goes in, and they have certain things that, okay, hey, look, if we're getting this, we want to get to this. We're not unique in that way. So, we have to be able to kind of change a play based on what we're seeing, and everybody has to be on point with that."
On Trevor Penning
"I think five games in, and I saw some improvements from the player. Yet I've wanted him to kind of be able to sit back and see the game from a different perspective and kind of grow that way. Then obviously with James [Hurst] going down, he (Trevor Penning) had to go in there and play. I thought he got off to a little bit of a rough start, but then I thought he settled in a little bit more. Again, we'll evaluate the tape and see how that ended up playing out. Yeah, I think we just wanted to give him a chance to kind of step back a little bit and kind of see the game from a different perspective."
More on Penning
"Look, I thought he handled it well. I thought he had a good week of practice, and he knows that he's got to continue to work to get better, which he's going to do. So, I thought he handled it well. We'll see where we're at next week."
On the importance of Penning getting snaps
"Yeah, and look, there's still part of that to it. I look at him as still a rookie player, and there's some ups and downs that go along with that. There are different ways to learn. There's trial by fire, and then there's giving a guy an opportunity to step back and take a breath. Again, like I said, evaluate and see the game from a different perspective. So that's what went into the decision."
On Allen's thoughts on quarterback Derek Carr's decision-making
"Overall, I think the decision-making's been fairly good. I think in every game you look at and say there's probably a few plays you'd kind of like to have back. So, without really having seen the tape, I don't want to go get too in depth with that. Look, I thought overall, I thought his decision-making has been pretty good."
On the message to the team ahead of a short week, with a game on Thursday, Oct. 19, against the Jacksonville Jaguars
"Look, swallow it and let's go. We don't have a lot of time to sit around and feel sorry for ourselves. This is a big man's league that we're in, so we've got to pick ourselves up off the mat and regroup, get ready for a good Jacksonville team."
On evaluating goals of personnel
"Look, we all have jobs to do – players, coaches, personnel, everybody has jobs to do, and we have to do a better job collectively as a group, all of us."
On what made the Texans' running backs difficult to tackle
"I thought they ran hard. I don't think we got off blocks nearly as good as we needed to. I don't think we had enough violence at the point of attack. A lot of things we had to address and get better at in the second half, and I thought we got better in the second half."
New Orleans Saints quarterback Derek Carr
On his assessment on the outcome of the game
"Very disappointed. I was livid coming off the field. I was angry coming off the field. I had to calm down a little bit. We as an offense had too many details and you know I'm not going to tell you what happened. Yes, we know what it was and all of those things, and I won't say it. But there's these little details that if we just do those things right, you're looking like, oh, my gosh, we scored 28 points. I just want to win, man. Like the yards are awesome, great, thanks, yes, but couldn't care less. I just want to win. That's all I care about is winning football games. If we don't do those details right every single time, especially when the game is on the line and when it matters most, then we're going to have this feeling more often than not."
On if he was throwing it to a different spot on the second to last pass of the game to receiver Rashid Shaheed
"Yeah, that one, we were on the wrong page. That's on me. The communication of it, I've got to clean that up for him and make it better for him."
On if there were several examples of being on the wrong page
"We had a couple of those. We did some things very well. We did some things explosively, but just having a few explosives or a lot of yards doesn't win football games. What wins football games is doing the right thing at the right moment every single time. Houston, give them so much credit. They're such a good team. Such a great young team that flies around, they play fast, and have tough defense. If you are not on your details, especially against this scheme, they're going to be on theirs, and it cost us today."
On if it is surprising and unacceptable that they are not on the same page this many weeks into the season
"I would say unacceptable. Today was unacceptable. And that's up to us as players to make sure we're on our details when the game is on the line for sure."
On if the fourth downplay to running back Alvin Kamara was designed to go to him
"I was going to try to throw it to Mike [Michael Thomas], but the backer was pushing. I didn't want to throw a pick. My option there against that zone is give Alvin (Kamara) a chance to go make a play at the sticks, similar to what we did last week against New England."
On if he felt like there was a lack of communication or too many mistakes in the red zone
"Absolutely! It's like we were talking about. It's the details of our assignments, making sure that we're doing those things right and we did not do that right today for sure."
On how he would evaluate the pace of the offense and if he was out of sync
"I didn't feel like we were out of sync or anything like that. I felt like everything we want is there in the run game, pass game and looks. There's a couple times we got in there, and I had to throw them way earlier than I wanted to, but great designs. Guys running open and having to check them down for certain things and reasons. I think that was more of the feeling. Them making plays, rather than a bad feeling like, "Oh, we can't do this or can't do that." We felt like we were doing some good things."
On how they can get the ship righted since they have more than enough talent and felt they had the right answer
"Yeah, absolutely. It's going to take each man every time you break the huddle. Like I said before the game, when you break the huddle, it's going to take every man just focusing that much harder on what is my assignment? When they present the look, what is my assignment now? If we do that as players, we definitely have enough pieces to do everything we want to do."
On his self-evaluation of where he wanted to be the first time joining a new team, six weeks into it, and how it's going?
"I didn't want to be 3-3. I think we've let a couple of these get away from us. It's early in the season. You play four quarters and then one more. We always break it down that way. What we've earned -- Coach Del Rio always said you are what you've earned, and we've earned 3-3. That isn't what we wanted. That's not what I wanted. It's not what I expected, but it's what we've earned. And so you look in the mirror and really push the envelope to everybody else. Demario [Demario Davis] was saying it too, look in the mirror. Did you do what you did last week this week, or did you just enjoy the week too much or whatever? Whatever the case may be, we have a lot of problem solvers, not a lot of problem creators in that locker room. And Mickey [Loomis] Dave have done a great job of bringing those kind of guys in. Michael and Kyle they've done a great job of bringing the right guys. It's up to us as leaders to make sure we're solving problems that we know need to be solved and can be solved."
On if a short week after a game like this better in a sense
"Yes, absolutely, because I'm going to get on the bus, I'm going to get on the plane, and I'm going to begin my preparation for the next game. You don't really get time -- whether we won this game or lost it, you don't get time to enjoy it or feel sorry for yourself. Like I said at the end, nobody cares how you feel. You've got to get ready for the next one. That's what I'll be doing on the plane is preparing, making sure everything I do in six, seven days, get it done in three, four days. That's what I have to do this week for sure."
On if he has reached the throwing without thinking stage with the shoulder
"Today was the best I've felt since it happened. For sure, yeah."
New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan
On how he feels
"About losing? There's only one way to feel, like we've got to get this s* together."
On what aspects the defense needs to work on
"Second half was a good half. First half, we gave them back momentum. You can't let a team that you feel like you're imposing your will upon – you can't let them get will back. Gave them confidence, and you saw confidence then put 17 points on in the first half, another 3 points in the second half, gave them 20 points all together, which was more points we put up on the board. At the end of the day, self-inflicted wounds, penalties, extended drives. We've got to be able to eliminate those. I've said it weeks before. How do I feel? It sucks to lose. It's frustrating to lose when we have the talent to affect the quarterback. We knew he had up to this point the fastest release of a quarterback, so it's going to be frustrating to pass rush after him. But we collapsed the pocket, got him to escape. You saw the throws that we wanted to get out of him. At the end of the day, we didn't do enough to get a win."
On what adjustments the defense made in the second half
"Nothing. It was all us. Again, we get an interception early in the game – what was [it], that first drive, second drive of the game? [You] give it right back. It's not fortuitous for our defense. You feel like we had another penalty that extended their drive. It was a lot of, again, self-inflicting wounds. We have to focus on us and how to get better rapidly. We've got a game in 96 hours or whatever that is."
On his message to his teammates
"We've already talked about it in the locker room. Going into halftime, it was a challenge to – we looked up, and it was 90 yards on the ground, and that's a direct reflection of the D-line – interior, exterior, all of us put together. So, it was a challenge to step the hell up. You saw the energy in the second half. You want the tale of two tapes is first half didn't have the energy we needed because we gave back some momentum early in the game. That second half, now we're back to our defense. That being said, back to our standards of defense should be where our standards should be from the start of the game until the end."
On what team leadership looks like to get this team back on track
"Again, as a defense, you can only look at how we played in the second [half]. Like, if we came out with that same energy in the first half, if we came off that interception, whether it be – a pick-six would have been great – but just give another chance to our team. You look at everything, even beyond the two missed kicks, you feel like, if you were 19-20 going into the last drive – a quick chip for a 22-20 situation – you can't get that back. Interception early in the game against a quarterback who really hadn't thrown any interceptions, you need those. I think there was tackles that hit our edge that you can't give those blatant runs up, especially against our edge. I think with our edges we've been quite stout, and that's not like us. So, we have to play our type of ball. If we do that for four quarters, then we'll talk about it. But right now, I'm just looking forward to breaking down this film and getting better."
On if the team's confidence is still intact
"It better be. Again, we need to eliminate our mistakes. It's not like the team came out and beat us today. We beat ourselves and gave the ball back. Defense did an okay job that first half, better job in the second half. If we eliminate our mistakes, if we stay tuned to what we know to play our brand of football, if we execute our plays on a high level each and every play, each and every series, the game will go our way more times than not."