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Saints Postgame Quotes

QB DREW BREES

(On Head Coach Sean Payton's injury)
"Obviously Sean [Payton] took a hit on the sideline there, on what I believe was the second or third play of the game. So, he was down and tried to call plays from the sideline, but it seemed like he needed to get his leg attended to, too, and I'll let other people tell you about that. For us, Pete Carmichael, our offensive coordinator, called plays. If you noticed, we did some no-huddle stuff as well. We tried to mix it up and do the best job we could. I felt like Pete did a great job of getting play calls in and all the stuff that we would have called in those situations. He deserves a lot of credit, as does the rest of our coaching staff, just to try and pick up the slack for what Sean would have done, obviously, as head coach and play caller."

(On Tampa Bay's defense)
"I thought they played great today. They took the ball away four times, which, if you can do that, you're going to win a lot of games. We gave it away four times, and we got it none. Granted, the last play of the game, it's fourth down, you got to throw it up anyway. The fact of the matter is, that'll get you beat. We've got to do a better job with that. I'm confident that we will. Other than that though, I felt like we moved the ball. We just kicked a couple of field goals when maybe we could have kept some drives alive. The turnovers hurt us obviously, too. It's hard looking back on it now because you're still kind of focused on what happened at the end of the game there, but they played well. They played us tight. It was back and forth there, and like I said, I think the turnovers gave them some good field position on a few occasions, which obviously can't happen. That just puts our defense in a tough spot, and we can't allow that."

(On setting an NFL record tonight)
"I don't even know what it is and don't really care, because it was all about coming here and getting a victory. I mean, everything that happened, you lose your head coach on the third call of the game, the play caller. Everybody stepped up and did a great job to make up for that, and we battled. We didn't play our best football, but we battled. We had a chance in the end, and we just didn't get it done. That's disappointing. Am I confident that we'll come back next week better than ever? Yes, I am. I know the type of guys that are in this locker game. We're going to stick together. We're going to fight through this adversity. The train keeps rolling. This is a long season. It's a marathon. We're sitting here 4-2, dropped a divisional game on the road. It hurts, but there's a lot of football left to be played. There's no doubt we've got to get better. We will."

DE WILL SMITH

(On if Head Coach Sean Payton's injury affected the game)
"No it didn't. You said that he got hurt, but it didn't look like it had any factor for our defense at all."

(On the Tampa Bay's big plays in the first half)
"Just mistakes on our behalf. You know, [the Buccaneers] came in the game, we came in the game, and we were going to press them and do a bunch of different things and they came in again and they were prepared for it. They made some plays here and there, and we made a couple of mistakes here and there which they ultimately extended the drive and got points in the first half."

(On the energy level)
"The energy was high. The guys were out there fighting [and] playing until the whistle's end. Everyone felt determined to play. We got to tip our hats to Tampa. They came out and played well. They had a good game plan. We knew it was going to be tough coming in here on the road and facing them. But we felt we would be able to win the game."

(On Tampa Bay WR Dezmon Briscoe's first-down reception in the fourth quarter)
"We tried to look at it on the jumbotron, but, I mean, we couldn't really see anything. It's a judgment call by the refs and if they can't see it, then they said they didn't see anything [to overturn the call]."

(On losing Head Coach Sean Payton)
"It was tough to lose Coach Payton during the game like that because he brings a certain energy out there, but, you know, guys were fired up. Guys knew the importance of this game to come out here and win a divisional game on the road. We knew it was important and we knew he would want us to go out there and play out. […] we do whatever it [takes] to get a victory. Unfortunately, we were unable to play that way but we still had a chance to win at the end and we fell just short."

TE JIMMY GRAHAM

*(On the 100 yard receiving game) *  
"For me it's bittersweet. I wish I was going home with the win, [but] there were a lot of things I did wrong today. There were a lot of errors and I just have to get better. It was just an okay day for me."

(On the collision with Head Coach Sean Payton)
"It was third down and I was just trying to get the first [down], and [as the play ended] I just had a couple of guys one me and then someone else came. Next thing I know I'm rolling up and I am looking up at Sean [and] he's on the ground."

(On the team's moral)
"This team, our motto is the next man up."

LB JONATHAN VILMA

(On the game)
"We always play each other tough [so] that is to be expected."

(On Tampa Bay's play)
"They were the better team today. We still have to correct some things on our end to get better, especially when we play them the second time."

WR LANCE MOORE

(On the mistakes)
"Anytime you have four turnovers it's almost impossible to win. We can't just ignore what happened today; we have to take a look at the film [and] see what things we did wrong. To have those turnovers, we can't ignore the fact this happened."

(On Head Coach Sean Payton's injury)
"You can't let something like that affect the way you play. Whoever is calling the plays, it really doesn't matter [because] we still have to go out there and perform. We just came up short today."

WR MARQUS COLSTON

(On the strategy of the coaching staff with Sean Payton not on the sidelines)
"The guys that were put in that position came and did the best they could. [They] put us in a position to score a touchdown late in the game and to go up."

(On the final interception in the end zone)
"This offense is definitely confident. When the game is on the line, we are going to make plays and it didn't happen for us today. [We] got to try and make corrections and get on to next week."

(On the missed opportunity to go up in the division)
"We definitely [missed that opportunity], but, at the end of the day, that's one game, so we will put it behind us, make the corrections. We got a tough one [game] next week."

(On QB Drew Brees' statement referring to the schedule as a marathon)
"Yeah, I mean, there is no playoff seed that is being decided today. So it would have been great for us to get [the win], but we didn't and I'm just going to keep moving to the next one."

RB MARK INGRAM

(On Head Coach Sean Payton's injury)
"We just tried to handle our [play] the right way. We have a lot of other great coaches on the staff, so they know the game plan and know our playbook. We're a family here, so we trusted that they put us in the right position."

(On poor run performance)
"We just have to do better, it's simple. Go back to the drawing board tomorrow and get better."

(On whether the game plan changed following Payton's departure)
"Nobody ever thinks their head coach is going to get knocked out of a football game, that's the last person that's going to get knocked out of a football game. So it was definitely different, something we had to adjust to, but I think we handled it pretty well."

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