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Titans interim coach Mike Mularkey and players talk about win against Saints

Transcript from Titans post game interviews


"It was an (absolutely) great win for this team. They are so competitive. They want to win so bad. They have come up short so many times. To keep the resilience throughout the game (says a lot). It could've got bad early. At times, that has happened with us. Never once did they ever flinch. And (they) just kind of kept coming back and making it a close game. (I said), 'Find a way to win this game. We have to find a way.' "

(On players making plays)

"We had guys out there (who had not played much recently). B.W. (Webb) played. As much as he did (play), he is just on the practice squad, to come in here and compete like he did (was big). We had a lot of guys that played well and we needed them to step up. DGB (Dorial Green-Beckham), to make some of the plays that he did, that was a big, giant step for him."

(On being proud of the team)

"The biggest thing was that your whole emotion could've been deflated when that field goal hit the crossbar. Not once did someone on that sideline say that 'we are not still in this, we are not still going to win this game.' That is this team. I have been in the league a long time. I'm just proud of them, really, really proud. They needed that. They really needed that."

(On the play of the Titans defensive backs today)

"They did a really good job. Our defense has done a really good job all year. Today, with the (running) backs that they (the Saints) have, I felt like that they were going to try to run the ball on us. Our guys knew that. That was a big emphasis…You try to make them one-dimensional. You really do not want to do that when that one dimension is Drew Brees, as accurate as he is. Other than the three double moves that got over the top of us, our guys kept everything in front of them and made tackles when we needed to. Our line did not get frustrated. When that ball is coming out quick, you start to think, 'I am never gonna get there. I am never gonna get there.' And if you stop, that is when the ball just sails over your head for a big, long play action pass. They just kept coming and kept coming. It was relentless. That is what these guys are made of. They just never stopped."

(On the improved play of the offensive line and offense today under his leadership)

"We got the ball out of (Marcus Mariota's) hands quicker. We changed the scheme some on how we were going to get the ball out and get it down the field. We changed some things that I thought were necessary. They handled it extremely well. Marcus (Mariota), obviously, made some great plays. He is accurate. If you can get him to get the ball out of his hands and he gets it into our guys' hands that turn out to be big plays…(that is the goal). Look at Delanie (Walker) what he does after he catches the ball."

(On Craig Stevens today)

"Craig Stevens, every time you want him to make a play, Craig Stevens makes a play every time. He is just reliable. He does not get the credit in the passing game that he should get. He is a complete player. That was a huge play for us. It doesn't surprise me that he did it."

(On penalties and personal foul calls)

"That is just how a 1-6, emotional team is. You are struggling, fighting, scratching, and trying to win. Sometimes, emotions get the best of you. That is not acceptable. That could've cost us the game. Those are guys that, they know that. It can't happen. It will cost us a game if we don't get it under control."

(On why the pass protection was so much improved today)

"Some of it's new. Some of the things I'm familiar with as a former coordinator and a play caller, so I've been involved with the run game, really, since I have been here. I just got more involved with the passing game. I'm not going to take credit for all of it. I thought that Jason Michael called an unbelievable football game. You talk about being composed and not missing a beat for the pressure that was on him. I am really proud of him and proud of what he did. We changed some of the philosophy of how to get the ball out and what to do with it. We will continue to do that."

(On Dorial Green-Beckham's performance)

"We put a lot of pressure on him to come in and make some plays. And he did. He is going to be that much better after one game. Just (getting) the experience (is important). There were explosive plays that he left out there. It was all good for him, all positive things."

(On the emotion of the week and how it worked out today)

"This has been an emotional week. This has been quite a week for everybody. To have an outcome like that (added to it). When it came to an overtime (period), getting the ball and scoring after the way that this week has gone, that locker room in there, they are all responsible for it. Those coaches (and) everybody kind of rallied around each other. It is a credit to them."


"I have to give the credit to all of the guys up front. Throughout the entire game they held their blocks and gave me time. All the credit goes to them. It's incredible. Throughout this hectic week of ours, to pull out this win, was huge."

(On overtime)

"We felt the same way in overtime as we did the entire game. We went in a looked at it as if we could seal the game we wanted to do that, and fortunately we were able to do that."

(On game-winning touchdown)

"It's something we've worked on this entire season. It's kind of been in our game plan the entire year. (Anthony) Fasano did a great job selling it and guys up front did a great job selling it. And he just popped wide open." "I think our team just stayed composed. They really believed in each other and for us moving forward that's what we need. Moving forward, this team each and every week of practice continues to work hard. So we'll keep doing that and hopefully we will keep pulling out some of these wins."

(On their first touchdown of the game today)

"Sometimes it's better to be lucky than good. We were fortunate to be in the right spot at the right time. He (Delanie Walker) did a great job following the ball and making the play. The stands was the target to be honest with you guys. I mean they brought a lot of pressure and honestly I was trying to throw it away. Right when I threw it I said I didn't put enough on it. But like I said, fortunately sometimes it's better to be lucky than to be good. I saw the ball bounce a few times and saw him grab it and run it in for us."


(On game-winning touchdown catch)

"It was just play action by Marcus, and he sold it great. I happened to have the right coverage for the play and it was called at the right time. And he (Marcus) threw it up there and I was wide open to make the catch. Catching those are sometimes tougher than the ones you have to contest for."

"I'm just so happy for this team. It was a great team win. We had a lot of ups and downs out there and we fought through it."

"It was a heck of a win. I'm so proud of my teammates, especially with all of the adversity we went through this season and even this week. Now we have to look forward to next week."


"We just went out there and played Titans football and got a great win. For him (Mariota) to come back and come out here today off an injury and do what he did today says a lot about him. That just excites me for him and his future and what we can become. And you've got to give the credit to the offensive line who protected him all game and gave him time to throw. He sat in there and made the tough throws and clearly that's what got us the win."

(On first touchdown)

"To be honest, I lost the ball in the lights when he (Mariota) threw it. But he got it up there and gave me an opportunity to make a play. They ran into each other, I turned around and saw the ball pop out, grabbed it and ran it in for a touchdown. The ball was just bouncing our way today."

"Our coach, Mike Mularkey – him being a tight ends coach - talked about us having to step up a little bit more. I think the entire tight end group did a great job stepping up and that's what you saw. I can't say enough about our offense line to give us time, the defense stepped up, and it was a great team win."

"We had a lot of distractions up in Tennessee, and I just felt we all came down here as a team and took those distractions and frustrations out on the Saints and that's what everyone did."


"I mean it's great. To get a win for him (Coach Mularkey) is huge and really emotional for everybody because he's a great guy. This team just wants to play football and play winning football. I say that because I'm tired of even our own fans saying we're terrible. So I this is a big deal and we have a great future to look forward to."

"We protected him (Marcus Mariota) as best we could. To see he didn't get sacked is huge. Obviously a win is a win, and you want to keep him protected to give us a better chance to win."


(On back-to-back unsportsmanlike conduct penalties)

"I'm not going to get into that. All I know is that we won the game. That's all that matters. Drew (Brees) is a heck of a quarterback and they (referees) are going to call those calls every time. After that call we had to focus back in. I know I got a little crazy out there, and other people did too. But we settled down quickly and played football. Like I said it's very hard and frustrating when you get a call like that because you work so hard to get to a guy like Drew Brees. But even if the calls didn't go in our favor, we had to settle down and continue to play football."

"This win was huge. I mean after the week we had; losing a great coach in Coach Whisenhunt, this win is huge for us; especially with us being a young team."

"It was a tough game for our defense, but I felt we put a lot of pressure on him (Brees). I mean, he gets the ball out real quick, and I mean you're talking about a veteran quarterback, a Hall of Fame quarterback out there making plays. But he hung in there and made our plays and that was the difference at the end of the day."

(On sack in last two minutes of regulation)

"That was huge, for us to get a sack at the very end to push them back to put them out of field goal range. That really helped. Like I said, we had our back against the wall then and we made the play to get us into overtime."


"He's (Brees) a great quarterback, and if you are going to decide to blitz you better make sure you have the right coverage called behind you. I'm just so happy for our new coach. To see him get a tough victory in his first game means a lot. Just to see all of our players run around at the end of the game being happy because we won is something memorable. To be honest, I never thought it would be like that. I thought we were going to win it in the fourth quarter. But to win it in overtime, there's nothing better than that."

CB #38 B.W. WEBB

(On his interception)

"The ball was up there in the air and all I wanted to do was make a play. The coaches and older players did a great job with me this week to get ready to play and get me in a position to make plays and help our team win."

"It's a huge victory for us. I mean to come into another team's house and get a 'W' is unbelievable. That's never an easy thing to do. I can't be happier.

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