<span style=""> <span style="">NEW ORLEANS SAINTS HEAD COACH SEAN PAYTON</span>
<span style="">Opening Statement…</span>
"Obviously it was a good win for us to get against a good team. We talked all week about the type of game we had to play and we had a lot of respect for the team we played today. They have won a lot of games, and I think our players new, and fully understood the strengths and weaknesses of that team. They understood the plan and the formula for playing well in game like that. I was pleased with how physical we played. I thought we played very physical and that was one of our goals of this game. We won the turnover battle. I thought our defense was outstanding coming up with the big stops and offensively we moved it and scored when we had to. It was a good win. Nothing really on the injury front; we had just a little hamstring (injury) with Leigh Torrence."
On the play of the defense…
"It's a team game and it is not about one side of the ball or the other. I thought our defense was outstanding today. All three phases are needed to win football games and I think we had that."
"I thought we got a pretty good jump on some of the snap counts. These guys are playing well. I thought by-and-large we did a good job of rushing the passer. He gets rid of it quick and he is pretty sharp with the offense. He gets to the right play a lot of times and he is well coached. Fortunately, we made a lot of plays."
On the play calling on defense….
"We mixed it up. Gregg (Williams) felt like this was a team that was going to get into some seven-man and eight-man protections and they were going to throw it quick so you have to be careful. It's not just all out blitzing. You have to have a good mix so that was factored in."
On if the way the defense is playing gives him a little more confidence…
"I think you get a little more confidence on fourth down to go for a play rather than punt it or kick a field goal. We kind of came in this game with the intention of playing it aggressively to win and we were able to do that."
On if the offense is allowed to struggle with the defense playing so well….
"I think to win in this league you have to play a complementary game. This isn't about style points. This is about the formula to win each game and then get on to the next week. That is really the truth so we may have to run the ball more or play more coverage on defense, but ultimately we have to be in sync and in concert as to how we are going to win each week. I was pleased. I thought it was a good team effort. When we needed to score late in the game to go up two touchdowns, I thought that was a big series and (Robert) Meachem came up with a big third down catch and we got them to jump offsides on fourth down and that was a big play for us."
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS PLAYERS
#22 CB Tracy Porter
On if the defense has been overlooked: "We have been overlooked all season. We know what type of offense that we have. Our job is to come in week in and week out and force turnovers. We want to put our offense on the short side of the field. Our game plan will take care of itself."
On if the defense made it a point to be physical today: "Each week we try to be the most physical and dominant team out there. We made it an emphasis to make it a physical game."
#20 CB Randall Gay
On if he feels the defense gets overlooked: "That's how it is when you are a defensive player with the kind of offense that we have. It was the same thing when I was with the Patriots. They are going to talk about the explosive offense. Our defense hasn't earned the right yet to be talked about all of the time. We really have to go out there every week and earn our right, so that you can talk about us."
On the defense creating opportunities for the offense: "In our meetings we say, 'Why can't we win 2-0?' We shouldn't need our offense to score for us to win. Why can't we produce the points? We can get a safety. We can score on defense. That's how we have to have our mind set."
#55 LB Scott Fujita
On today's victory: "It doesn't matter how we get them as long as we get them. We have to just take it one game at a time. I like that this team remains focused no matter what else happens. It's pretty impressive. It's special in all phases of the game. I think everyone picks up the slack when they have to and the focus is the best I have ever seen."
On if he feels the defense earned validation today: "It feels good. I know everybody had their eyes on that Jets defense. We came into this game wanting to outplay their defense. I think that we did and it feels good."
#94 DE Charles Grant
On today's defensive effort: "We just have to get everyone healthy. Now, we have to focus on the New York Giants. We know they are going to come in here with a full head of steam."
On if he feels this is the most complete team he has been on: "This is the first year. It really hasn't been that way since my rookie year. Our defensive coordinator has done an outstanding job. The organization drafted and brought in the right people in the offseason. Everything that we do now is a team sport."
On him being healthy: "Definitely. The last two seasons I have been banged up. I had an ankle injury and a hamstring I had to deal with. I'm just going to get back like I used to be."
#25 RB Reggie Bush
On today's game: "We have been able to win games completely as a team. I think that is what is making us really unique right now. We are able to score points from all phases. Today, the defense put up 14 points, which was huge for us. We only have one touchdown on offense if you take those two away. It is weird to hear that we only put up one touchdown today, but that's how it goes sometimes. Teams who are elite are able to put up points in all three phases."
On the 4-0 start to the season: "It feels really good. We have nothing to hang our heads about. We just need to find ways to get better. Everybody in this locker room can find a way individually to get better, including myself. We need to focus on this bye week and get ready for the New York Giants in two weeks."
#42 S Darren Sharper
On if he is happy he chose to join the Saints: "I'm just excited that they picked me and allowed me to play and continue my career. It is the perfect situation and the perfect fit. I knew that once they hired Greg Williams. I knew that was going to allow me and my defensive teammates to make a lot of plays. It has worked out well thus far in the season."
On why Gregg Williams' scheme is a good match for him: "We attack in different ways. I would say one of my strengths is reading quarterbacks and knowing where they are trying to throw the football."
On if Mark Sanchez was eyeing his receivers: "I don't want to say that he eyed his receivers. At certain times, all quarterbacks know where they are going with the football. When he has two receivers on one side and a tight end on the other, you can kind of figure out where he is going to throw the football. He actually did a great job of trying to not look off, but you can use reverse psychology when they try to look you off and then go the opposite way."
#9 QB Drew Brees
"The defense played outstanding once again. They scored twice on defense, so we had four (turnovers) on the day, which is unbelievable. We talked about it coming into this game knowing their defense thrives on getting negative plays, creating turnovers for their offense. The big emphasis for us on offense this week was to run the ball effective; try to keep our defense off the field as much as possible, hold the football, take care of the quarterback and my job was to try to get the ball out on time to avoid sacks and negative plays. I felt like we managed the game well on offense. We had those two fourth downs that we did not convert. One was fourth and goal. The other one obviously in their territory. We were balanced, did everything we needed to do, especially in the fourth quarter to win the football game.
Can you talk about your block in the second quarter?
"I'm trying not to make a habit out of that, but they never account for the quarterback to be a perimeter blocker. If we continue to cut the ball back and I'm there, then I'll do what I can.
Can you talk about how the Jets defense played and how you managed the game against them?
"We drove down the field the first possession of the game, get three points, very well could have had seven. After that it was about managing the football game. I felt like the Jets defense had a good plan and played very well. We knew that coming in. We knew that at times we were going to have to play the field position battle and prevent our defense from being put in tough situations like with the short field and that kind of thing. I felt like we were able to move the ball at times and put them down into their territory. The defense would do a great job of getting us the ball back in good field position. We could go down and get points. You really talk about the missed points on the fourth down and goal. If we can convert that, that's seven points and if we can convert that, we're on a drive that potentially is three or seven points. I look at missed opportunities to get points, and obviously penalties that stalled drives. We're going to continue to try to get better offensively, but yes, they did play well today.
On addition of Darren Sharper…
"I think Sharp's been a great addition. Obviously you look at his productivity over the first four games – five interceptions, two returned for touchdowns. That's pretty impressive. What this defense allows him to do with Gregg Williams' style and aggressiveness and pressure, it really allows Sharper to do what he does best – and that's sit back and be the quarterback of the defense. He's a veteran player, he's been around, he's seen a lot and he's played at a high level for a long time. He can read route combinations and jump certain routes. He can just play ball and play his type of football. He's been able to come up with some big plays. I saw that all training camp long, with Sharper trying to jump things. He was unpredictable at times, which makes it tough on a quarterback. You see him really driving this defense. Obviously, the guys up front help create that for him with pass rush.
On hard count to draw Jets offsides on 4th-and-1 in fourth quarter…
"It's just something we had talked about and kind of game-planned for a little bit. We just knew we might get in a critical situation and potentially be able to get them offsides, and we did.
On fumble recovery in fourth quarter…
"We have a seven-point lead, we're at the 50-yard line. We're trying to go down and get points to ice the game, and all of a sudden there's a ball on the ground. We have to have it. There's no excuses. You certainly can't allow that type of momentum change at that point in the game. Like I said, maybe right place at the right time, but we were right there to get the ball.
On challenge of facing Jets' defense…
"They did a great job. They really did. The Jets' defense is one of the best in the league. They've got one of the best defensive coaches in the league in Rex Ryan. They had been playing extremely well up until this point. We knew the challenge we had coming in. We had to stay out of third-and-long situations, because that's when they can get pretty exotic. They got us a few times, but I felt like we got the ball out when we needed to and didn't take sacks. We took care of the football in the passing game and the guys up front did a good job of managing that and allowing us opportunities to make some of those critical first downs, especially in the fourth quarter.
On switching modes to a more balanced offense…
"Maybe not since the LaDainian Tomlinson days in San Diego. I'm ecstatic for the way we've come together as a team, what we've been able to do defensively and on special teams and the balance that we have offensively. My job as a quarterback is to lead that group of men and manage the game and put us in the best position to score points, take care of the football and win games. The fact that the last two games, we haven't thrown a touchdown pass, and yardage-wise we've thrown for (less than 200 yards), I think the balance – playing that complementary type of offense with the run and the pass – it's good for the offense, it's good for the players, it's winning football games. In the end, it doesn't matter how we get it done, it's that we get it done."
#91 DE Will Smith
On his perspective of the club's performance heading into the bye week:
"We've been working hard and taking it one game at a time. Now that we're 4-0 we can reflect on the four victories and we've played balanced football. Some games offense won the game. Some games defense won the game. We know that we have a rough road ahead of us and we have to take it one game at a time, enjoy this week off coming up and prepare for the Giants."
Can you talk about the touchdown produced by the defense in the end zone and the aggressive play call that helped produce it?
"It wasn't necessarily an aggressive call. It was one of our base defense calls and we brought pressure from the left and they teach the defensive end of the right side to loop around, which is exactly what I did. He (Mark Sanchez) was waiting there right for me. I went for the ball first, tried to strip it out and knocked it out and Remi (Ayodele) jumped on the ball and got the touchdown for us.
How does it feel to make that kind of play and be playing for this team when at one point your status was in question?
"It feels great to be out there. Like me and Charles (Grant) said all along, we're happy with the decision. We're happy to be able to be here to support our team and make plays for them like they expect us to. I'm happy to be here and able to contribute for the team.
What are the differences and similarities between this team and the 2006 team?
"It's a lot different. I think we have a lot of older guys, a lot of guys that have been in big games, have experienced a lot of things through the course of their career, where, I think three years ago we were a younger team. Guys kind of weren't used to this success. Everybody had kind of gotten bounced around from place to place and we just started off and gelled together so early. We played well, but this team is totally different, because we have a lot smarter guys and we know we have to take it one game at a time. We know we're not going to win the Super Bowl next week or the week after that. We'll take it one game at a time."
#23 RB Pierre Thomas
For the second consecutive week you guys haven't been particularly flashy, but at the end when it counted and needed to put a team away you did it. Can you talk about your finishing?
"In the beginning we struggled. We had a hard time getting our pace and getting our rhythm on the offensive side. Defense, it was electrifying out there. They really held us in there for the victory. We have to give this game to the defense. On the offensive side we struggled. We couldn't really move the ball against a tough defense. We were ready for them, but after going face to face with them you coiuld see how toucgh these guys are and how they really bring it. We really battled as an offense and really tried to stick it to them and we did it in the second half.
When did you feel you were finally feeling better this week?
"I believe I am. I feel a lot better. I felt a lot better coming into this game, but I felt a lot better on Thursday."
Does your productivity come as a surprise to you given the knee injury and the sickness over the last two weeks?
"Every time I step on that field I'm going out there to do my best and help my team get a 'W,' whatever it takes, whether it's on the offensive side or on special teams. I'm going (all) out, 110 percent all the time."
Did you feel rusty at all?
"I thought I was going to be a little rusty, especially last week the way I was feeling. I was really sick before the game. I didn't even have the chance to make it out to warmups. I really didn't think I was going to play that game. I suited up, got on the field and said I had to play out. I can't worry about it. I felt great comning into this game. I just had to stay focused and get ready for a tough defense and we showed that we can hold out."
What has it meant to you guys this year that you don't have to win shootouts?
"We can't look at that. We have to go out there and battle no matter who we're playing against. The defense has been doing a heck of a job. As an offensive player we still have to go out there and take it to the team. We can't allow the defense to step it out. We have to go out there as an offensive group and we have to pla our game. We have to stay focused. We got to move the ball. We got to try to learn to hit a team in the mouth in the first half and bring it to them in the second half and finish it out. We can't really rely on our defense to do everything for us, but as the defense, they're playing amazing out there and we're really proud of them.
NEW YORK JETS HEAD COACH REX RYAN
"You have to give them credit. The Saints outplayed us today. They forced a lot of turnovers. They scored with them. You have to give them a lot of credit. I thought that they ran the ball pretty effectively against us as well. Obviously, they outplayed us."
On Mark Sanchez:
"I thought Sanchez at times looked like a rookie today. He made some mistakes, which I'm sure he wishes he had back. He wasn't the only one. We have to do a better job of protecting him."
On the loss:
"I thought at times that we ran the ball effectively. At other times, the Saints did a good job stopping us. Overall, it was a poor performance on our part. We kind of got it handed to us a little bit. We'll se what happens next week."
On the breakdowns today by the offensive line:
"Sometimes it didn't even look like it was the offensive line. They had some free runners at our quarterback. They did a good job studying tape and recognizing some of those things. They did a nice job of the pressures. They had some free runners on our quarterback as well. Don't blame that on the offensive line all total. Once we see film, I'm sure our guys will agree that we can play better in a lot of phases of this game."
On if the Saints blitzed more than expected:
"No. We knew they were going to try to blitz us. We practiced it all week. They did a nice job. They were allowed to. When they were able to stop our run, then they pinned their ears back and all that. We have to run the ball a little more effectively and get a little more yards on first down and that will give some opportunities to convert more on third down."
On the play of Shonn Greene:
"This kid is a good running back. He's got some explosiveness. I just thought that we wanted him to get in the game last week. We were able to get him in there today. I thought he did some nice things for us. He kind of tweaked that ankle a little bit later in the game, but I thought he did some nice things. We have three backs that can run that we're going to play. It's good to see that we played all three, because I think this kid has a chance. He's a good back. Obviously, we have two Pro Bowl backs, but I think this kid can play. You're never going to find out until you throw him in there."
On Kris Jenkins being drawn off sides on fourth and one:
"Kris plays great, but we've got to be smart. In that situation, you know they are going to try to do it. They only needed about six inches, but they are going to try and draw you off. We have to know that. Kris knows that. It's one of those things that happened."
On Drew Brees:
"The guy's a great quarterback. We knew it was going to be a challenge, but for the most part, our guys were doing a good job of competing, in particular (Dwight) Lowery and (Drew) Coleman. (Darrelle) Revis was outstanding. We never really got to him, never got to disrupt him that much. I don't think he was the regular Drew Brees, but he did make enough throws to win the game."
NEW YORK JETS PLAYER QUOTES
#6 QB Mark Sanchez
"He (Drew Brees) didn't make the mistakes I made. My mistakes killed us. Our defense played well enough to win. That game is 10-10 without three interceptions and a fumble. So that's the game right there. You turn the ball over like that, you just aren't going to win."
"I just made poor decisions today & that cost us the game. We spotted them 14 points and the final score was 24-10. There's no excuse for that. Our defense played well enough to win and I have to play well enough for us to win."
On Sharper INT for TD:
"That's a classic rookie quarterback looking at his receiver. Sharper read me the entire way. He saw my eyes and I threw it right to him. There's absolutely no excuse for that. It was a poor decision and a poor use of my eyes."
#57 LB Bart Scott
"We are behind that kid (Sanchez) 100 percent. There's no need for panic. We are not going to go off course. You will not find this team getting off the bandwagon. We believe in our scheme and we believe in each other."
"Honestly I thought we were going to come in here and leave with a victory and then go undefeated. Today the Saints were the better team. So now we will leave this game, learn from the experience and try and go 15- 1.
"I thought our defense played enough to win. I'm not going to make a big deal and criticize what happened. It happened and now we have to regroup. We have a big divisional game next week, on a Monday night, on the road, in Miami, and that's what we have to get ready for now. Give the Saints credit, they were the better team today."