Thursday, October 25, 2001
Q- Re: The pressure for the offense to score and help out the defense.
KC- I think there is a sense of urgency to score points right now. The defense is obviously playing really well and we arenít really helping out the cause right now. It is like a pitcher who pitches well and gives up an earned run or two, and gets no support from his offense. We are working on it, though. We are moving the ball, we are doing good things- we are just not capitalizing on them.
Q- What do you have to do to improve?
KC- The attitude that we have to take is keep working hard at practice and we are practicing really well. We have to keep plugging away, plugging away, and keep at it. We believe in the things we are doing, and in the guys we have here. We just need to keep working at it, and one day it will all come together.
Q- What do think the problem is in the red zone?
KC- Well, penalties are hurting us at times. If you are talking about the Eagles, I thought they did a good job against us in the red zone. They had the answers for a couple of our plays. We probably havenít executed our best when we needed to.
Q- Is this division game against Washington really important for you guys?
KC- They are all important. Division games-they are all important. Certainly, we donít want to lose anymore ground. We are going down there to a tough place to play. They will be fired up for it and they are coming off a win, so we know it is going to be tough. We have to just keep doing what we are doing, keep working at it and hope that good things will happen.
Q- Do you need to change some things up because Washington is so familiar with you?
KC- Well, it is not like we have had the same game plan for the past three years. We change things up from week to week, we try to do the best things that we do, and I feel that is the way we are going into this week.
Q- Kerry, I was talking with some of your defensive guys today, it is a very united front in the room. In previous years there was a lot of finger pointing, but everybody seems to be on the same page saying, ďwe are a family here and we have to remember that.Ē
KC- Right. It is no secret that we havenít give them support that they needed and what we needed as a team. I think they know that we are working hard, and we are giving it everything weíve got, and we will keep doing that. It is not like it has all been bad; we have had some good stuff happen, we just havenít capitalized on some opportunities. We will continue to work at it and give it everything weíve got.
Q- What are the two or three things that you would like to see yourself do a little bit better?
KC- I think you can always improve on decision-making. Certainly I would like to cut down on the turnovers, and try to get us in the end zone more.
Q- Do you feel good confidence wise?
KC- I feel great confidence wise. Iím practicing as well as Iíve ever practiced, and Iím throwing the ball as well as Iíve ever practiced. At times, I have felt really good in games, especially in the past three games. I feel good where Iím at, and about a lot of things we are doing out there.
Q- How has the team responded this week to coachís anger?
KC- I think we have responded really well to it. I think we have a bunch of guys who are willing to take a hard look at themselves and realize we have to get better and I think we are showing it in the way we have practiced. I think we have gone out and had two really good days of practice.
Q- First time you guys get into the red zone, how important is it for this team, psychologically, to get a touchdown?
KC- If you start letting it weigh on your mind that much, you are going to do nothing but hurt yourself. You have to stay free, you have to maintain confidence. The second you start getting tight in the red zone, or anywhere else on the football field, you are not giving yourself a chance to be successful. We are not thinking about that; we are going full steam ahead and are going to try to execute and do all the things we do well. Hopefully, because we have been working on it and we are emphasizing it, things will work out better for us.
Q- Is this similar to last year?
KC- No, I think we are better this year than we were last year. If you look at the past few games, we have done good things. The reason we havenít scored points is because we hurt ourselves. We have no one to blame but ourselves, but there have been some things that I am really encouraged by, and I think they are some things that we have done better than at any point last year.
Q- Kerry, when you came into to training camp, Coach Fassel said that this is more your team now than before. Have you used your leadership more?
KC- Well, I think the thing you need to do in situations like this, when you struggle, is to keep the right attitude, you have to keep going out and practicing hard, working hard, and that is the best kind of leadership you can have in these situations. I donít see anybody getting down, or anybody getting tired or nervous or anxious. I see guys who are willing to work hard and know that we want to get better and that we are going to do everything we can to get better.
Q- If you wanted to show frustration, would you not do it because you know they will be looking at you and your reaction?
KC- Well, I show frustration at times, I showed frustration after the Rams game. That was one of the most frustrating losses I have ever been involved in. There is a difference between frustration and getting down. I donít think you are going to see anyone get down, you certainly wonít ever see me get down.
Q- If Ron Dixon could come back healthy, and do some of the things Coach Fassel has talked about him being able to do, how much do you think he could help your offense?
KC- I think he could help, I think he could become more consistent. Certainly with Ike coming back, and really having three guys who are turning into good receivers, we have been doing a lot more three-wides and four-wides. Ron certainly has a lot of ability and if he keeps working at it, he could really help this club.
Q- A couple of guys were saying, especially the line, that it has been a lot harder for them this year because last year you guys kind of came out of nowhere and now people are preparing for you a lot harderÖdo you notice that difference too?
KC- Definitely, no question about it. We are not going to surprise anyone, we are not going to sneak up on anyone. Despite that, in the past two games, we have been in position to win the games. It is not like we have been getting manhandled by anybody, we are doing good things, but there have been little things here and there that have kept us from breaking out.
Q- Re: understanding that teams would be more prepared for you.
KC- I think you understand that it is going to be different and more difficult, so I donít think it surprised anyone. We understood what it was going to take for us and it is even more apparent now that we are going to have to try to continue to give a better effort than we had at any point last year.
Q- In recently controlling the time of possession, etc., do you get the feeling that this offense is ready to blow?
KC- I will say this: I think we have been doing some good things and I think we are working really hard. I really do. I think we are practicing really well. All I can say, because of those two things, is that I feel good about the fact that we can have a better last two thirds of the season that we did the first third of the season. But we are going to have to continue to work hard and guys are going to have to continue to understand that it is going to take a great effort. I think we all understand that and I think we are all getting there. Sometimes you have to have blind ambition that even though things havenít worked out the past couple games, if you keep working hard, all of a sudden a lot of good things start to happen. I think that is the attitude we have right now.