New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton - Conference Call with New Orleans Media - Monday, October 22, 2018
The fact that the team has been able to win in a variety of ways this year, what does it say about the mental makeup of this team?
"I think I think it's kind of something you build a little bit. Obviously you want to have that confidence and that only comes after you've done it a few times and once you've done it a few times, you do feel like you're in a game. Obviously yesterday we felt we were playing a real good football team. I thought that that score to cut it to three was important. You knew it was going to be a battle in field position and in the end getting the break when they missed the PAT was significant."
*How do you explain the continued execution in the fourth quarter when this team has needed it such as in this game and the Atlanta and Cleveland games? *
"I felt like the third quarter went fast and I felt like the fourth quarter lasted forever. Now that's a good thing relative to how the wind was moving, but I thought we were able to mount some drives and change it up a little bit. I thought we were able to do a good job defensively. We did a good job of getting off the field. I thought our special teams units covered extremely well. We had a situation where kicking from the 50, we executed that well. (Thomas) Morstead came in (for the kickoff that put the Ravens at their 14). We had the fake punt, so there were a lot of things that shifted field position and I think really played a big part in the game, the time of possession, all of those things."
*How is it that Dan Roushar is able to get offensive linemen to come in and not have a significant dropoff following an injury? *
"These guys are paid professionals in their training just like everyone else. You know you're in a game that's going to have injury. You know you're in a game that's going to have some things take place. They too, the Ravens had some challenges with their offensive line and both teams had to manage playing some guys that maybe don't normally get to play as much. And I think both in both cases, (the lines) played pretty well. That's one of the challenges with the workweek in your you're not just developing your starters, you have to be developing your whole roster and your practice squad."
*How big was Benjamin Watson yesterday especially on third down? *
"Those are some big catches for us obviously and not in easy yardage situations. He did a tremendous job and it was good to see, because that's a tough it's a tough out, a tough group when you get to third and longs and there hadn't really been a lot of success against him and I thought those were big catchers for us."
Does Alvin Kamara not get enough credit for what a tough inside runner he is?
"Well I think that's the one element that's kind of our secret. When you watch him and his leg drive. We got good push on one of those runs where we really pushed the defense into the end zone. That was important. I thought we matched the physicality and it's a physical front and I get all that, but we were too."
*Talk about Drew Brees' lack of interceptions this year? *
"I know. We're not going to talk about his lack of interceptions. He's playing efficiently, obviously location has been great. I think he's making good decisions with the ball and I think what he did yesterday was impressive. There were two or three times where he had to make some plays with his feet to buy time and then make a throw up, I thought significant plays to keep a drive going."
*Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara listed some of the Raven's big statistical achievements over the past two years going into this game? How much had you talked about this to them about this team? *
"It's not like we just lay out all these different numbers, but each week I'll try to lay out a few things that I think are important about the team we're playing. So it wasn't just with Baltimore, but there were some interesting numbers relative to the team we were playing yesterday and numbers really to their credit. This is a team that has won the time of possession (battle). They're probably playing the best complementary football in our game today as we went into that game and here's why (he explains to the team) and then kind of hit the numbers. A fast start we felt was important because look this is a team that's 13-0 when ahead at the half in the last year and a half and 0-9 when they were down. But that's not unusual. This week it'll be a different set of numbers that are relative to the game. That's one of the better teams in our league."
What's kind of the first thing that jumps out about Minnesota?
"We haven't really started yet. We're get started right now. We just finished on our game and going through the grades and going through all the tape."
How much will you have to caution about people getting excited too much about the revenge factor?
"The revenge factor might be one of the most overrated (factors). That was a whole different team a year ago and a whole different game. And this is a new team playing this '18 season for different reasons. It (NFC Divisional Playoff) was a hard-fought game with a tough finish to it. I just don't see it that that way. It wasn't like there was bad blood when the game was over with or anything like that. Two teams fought hard and they (Vikings) made a play at the end that ended up costing us the game. But there were a lot of things that ended up costing us the game. So I think the focus is going to be on this year's Vikings and this year's Saints team rather than the irony or the fact that we just finished playing them last year."