NEW ORLEANS SAINTS VS. SAN DIEGO CHARGERS
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 7, 2012 ● MERCEDES-BENZ SUPERDOME
SAN DIEGO CHARGERS POSTGAME QUOTES
HEAD COACH NORV TURNER
"As we prepared for this game, we looked at their last four games. Each game was very similar to this. These are games that were back-and-forth. These were games that were decided by a couple of plays in the fourth quarter. I thought, through a lot of the game, we handled the circumstances pretty well. There were some things that cost us a pretty big deal late in the game. They are outstanding offensively, and they made plays when they had to."
(on what stood out on the final drive of the game for his team) "Just our guys and the way they fight and compete. I'm not going to get into it, but we had a couple of plays called back that I thought were good plays. That's the way this game is. It comes down to one or two plays. If we get a couple of those plays, I think we have time to maybe take a couple of shots at the end zone. Obviously the play with (Antonio) Gates that was called back was a big play."
(on Ryan Mathews' performance) "I thought Ryan really played well. He played physical; he played fast. I thought he did a good job when he was in there. And the protection part of it, with the '11' personnel and nickel people, I think he's doing the things we need him to do."
(on Melvin Ingram's late-game penalty) "Obviously it was a critical play. We as a group, we are new to each other. We have some young guys and we are going to be an outstanding team. There's no question in my mind because of the way this group works at it, and how badly they want to be (good). You can't make those kinds of errors, and we will learn from them.
(on Robert Meachem's performance) "He's had opportunities, but we've been off. We have missed him a little bit and the ball has gone other places. When he's had those opportunities I think the way the coverage came up, the looks we got, we were able to get him the ball."
(on his play-calling on second and goal from the two-yard line) "It really wasn't something from the scouting report, it was how they (Saints defense) played us. They came in, and they do an outstanding job of mixing up, we caught a coverage when we ran the ball on first down. They ran a max-blitz on second down which is pretty good for them. We got to what I thought was the right pass and Philip just underthrew it a little bit. When you get to third and two, you're going to make decisions (based) on what's the best thing in that situation against what you're getting."
(on the emotion of this game and how it might have affected the outcome) "I think it's easy, after the fact, to say that. I don't think anyone would've said that at halftime. I thought our guys handled the environment. They handled the things that were happening in terms of what New Orleans was doing. I thought we were playing fast, very aggressive. I thought we played that way the entire game. As I said, you can go through a game and when we go back and look at it, guys were asking me about some calls already. They go your way or don't happen. In the red zone, they kicked (a) field goal and we were held to a field goal down there. Again, sometimes you don't make the play you'd like to make and you kick a field goal."
QB #17 PHILIP RIVERS
"I can't tell you how tough it is to lose a game like this. I mean we were right there. We were up by 10 points and just didn't get it done. We have a great team, a championship caliber team. But we have to win close games like this. Once we do that – I mean win a game, win a division and learn from it – that's what it takes to win a championship. And this team is that close, believe me. All of you guys know I hate losing, but the way we fought and fought out there is something good. It's something I'm even happy about, even though we lost."
(on end of the game drive): "I mean, those final calls under two minutes could have gone either way. It was frustrating to hit Antonio (Gates) on the 20-something yard line and have it called back because of a penalty. But we just didn't execute. I mean we had the ball with three timeouts left with decent field position. But we just didn't get it done."
(on Drew Brees breaking the record): "I'm very happy for him. I know him and I am proud of him. It couldn't happen to a better player and person. The way he prepares and approaches the game is great. And I told him that right after the game."
WR #12 ROBERT MEACHEM
"It was great to come back here and play well. I mean, it's great that I caught two touchdowns, but the final result was we lost. We fought hard as a team and we had plenty of chances to win this game. But we just didn't get it done. While the offense executed real well most of the game, in the fourth quarter we couldn't end it like we wanted to."
(on Drew Brees' record) "I was really proud of him. As you guys know I was the receiver on some of his touchdowns the last few years so it was good to see him do that tonight in front of their home crowd."
RB #24 RYAN MATHEWS
"It's real tough for us to leave here with a loss. Our offensive line did a great job throughout the whole game opening up holes and I ran through them to control the game. There was that one drive in early in the game where we were in the red zone and we didn't score (a touchdown) and kicked a field goal. We have to do a better job in the red zone."
CB #23 QUENTIN JAMMER
(on his interception) "I was in the right place at the right time on that one interception. I felt that was a big play, to make the play to give us the momentum early."
"I thought our defense played great tonight. Of course they had some big plays. If we could have taken that away then the score would have been in our favor."