Bucs Central

Open Locker Room Quotes: Wednesday

Safety Will Allen addresses big plays hurting the defense. Recently signed kicker Shane Andrus talks about butterflies before kicking. Veteran defensive tackle Chris Hovan talks about the rivalry between the Bucs and Eagles. starting QB Josh Johnson talks about growing within the offense and building chemistry with the receivers. Running back Carnell Williams talks about the teams desire to beat the Eagles and the different blitz packages they deploy.

(On being hurt by big plays)
“If you give up one big play and you make four turnovers, that’s just a part of it. We just have to eliminate them. I think we did that in the Giants game. I think we did that against the Redskins. I think that we just have to continue to do it and be mindful of it, just stop teams from going up top. It’s hard but we had four turnovers last week. We just have to continue to do that each week.”

(On the defense)
“I just think that our style of play is aggressive. Our style of play is very tenacious. There is a lot of room for error. It’s going to be tough. We would love to not give up the big play but sometimes it’s going to happen. We have to understand that’s one snap, come back and make three or four turnovers like we did last week.”

(On if he gets butterflies before he kicks)
“Yeah, I always have a little bit of butterflies, but that’s when I perform better it seems like, when I get a little focused in. I’m trying to become a better workout person. I’ve always been a gamer, so I’m trying to get better at these workouts in the past to get to this point.”

(On his biggest kick)
“In college I hit a 52-yard game-winner to beat Tony Romo’s Eastern Illinois team back in ’02 and win the conference. Down by a point with two seconds left. It’s the best ball I’ve ever hit in my life, and it was a game-winner to beat Tony Romo in college, so that’s probably my best kick.”

(On getting an opportunity)
“This is what I’ve been wanting my whole career. It’s my fourth year in the NFL now and I’ve only gotten one active game, so this is all I want. Everything hopefully goes well.”

(On what type of kicker he is)
“Mentally, I’m strong. I’m more of a gamer. I feel like I’ve been best in game situations and that’s my token around the NFL. I’ve tried to become a better workout player as far as traveling around and working out with teams. Now that I get a chance to come in a game I feel like I’ve got an opportunity to do a good job.”

(On if he’s picked up much from other members of the kicking fraternity)
“Yeah, I’ve met a lot of guys obviously. There’s 32 kickers and I’m around the 33, 34 mark for the past three years. I’ve picked up a lot of stuff from working out with veterans, working out with rookies, learning how they approach a workout, learning how they go about their business. Obviously, playing behind Adam Vinatieri for three years now I’ve kind of learned his routine and learned how to be a professional and go about my business.”

(On the history of facing the Eagles)
“I don’t think they can fully understand it. Of course, you had to have been here and been a part of that history, been a part of some of those games. Even I wasn’t. I kind of inherited it, playing here in my first year, the year after the Super Bowl. I kind of know what it’s about. I think for the young guys they’ll get a taste of what it’s like when they go up to Philadelphia. Then they will understand it.”

(On the 2006 matchup in Tampa)
“That was a fantastic game. I will never forget that game. It was a great game that I will never forget.”

(On if it can serve as motivation if Raheem Morris brings it up)
“He’s already brought that up. Philadelphia is always going to be an organization that is right there as one of the top teams year in and year out. That’s definitely a rivalry that is going to resurface. It’s a team that we need to look at and understand what it is like to play a team and meet them at the end of the year, whether it is the regular season, year in and year out. I think the guys will get a great taste of what it’s like.”

(On the Philly rivalry)
“They’re a tough team. Last time they came in here, we won with a 66,000-yard field goal. It was a great game, but at the same time this is a tough team. They’ve got a lot of different weapons right now. We’re not just dealing with [Michael] Vick, we’re dealing with DeSean Jackson and the rookie out of Pitt [LeSean McCoy] and Michael Vick, Mr. Slash himself. We’ve just got to be prepared. We’ve got to be on our assignments and alignments, especially when they run this Wildcat offense.”

(On if players remember the Philly rivalry)
“There’s a lot of history. If you’re a football fan and you look at the history of the Bucs and the Eagles, [it’s an] intense rivalry. The winner usually moved on in the playoffs. There is an importance. These guys are one of the tough, physical teams in the league right now. But with what’s happened in the past and with the guys getting ready, I think it should be a great game.”

(On the losing streak)
“Yeah it’s tough, but the only way to rectify these losses is to go on the road and get a win. That’s the way to change this all around and that’s the direction we’re going in.”

(On preparing for two quarterbacks in Donovan McNabb and Michael Vick)
“You’re talking about five quarterbacks now. You’ve got 10 [Jackson] back there, you’ve got seven [Vick] back there, you’ve got McNabb, you might have [Kevin] Kolb come in. They have different packages where you really have to be on your assignment and alignment or you lose the ball. Half the time when we’re watching the film the video camera guy’s losing the ball and we’re trying to find out what’s going on. It’s a very diverse offense. They’ve got a lot of weapons right now. Coach [Andy] Reid’s doing a great job up there. But we just have to be on our assignments and alignments, our details, especially this Sunday. ”

(On what he did during the suspension)
“I was in Syracuse, New York, working out, staying in shape, doing whatever I needed to do to keep myself in shape and get ready to get back.”

(On what he learned)
“I learned a lot. I could sit here and go on forever as to how much I learned. The main thing is that this is what I love to do, this is what I am blessed to do and this is where I am.”

(On what needs to be improved with the team)
“Nothing in particular. We need to put all three phases together in the game, offense, defense and special teams. That’s one thing that I haven’t seen us do in the last four weeks, put all those phases together enough to win a ball game. I think once we do that, which we are capable of, then we should be good.”

(On what he did to address his off-field issues)
“Just being away for those four weeks and having time to reflect on things I have done, how I hurt myself and how I hurt the people around me, such as my teammates, coaches and people that I trusted. Just taking that time to reflect and think back and having that time in the past four weeks, that’s how I really addressed it.”

(On how Raheem Morris welcomed him back)
“He picked me up from the airport when I got back in. We had a long talk and we discussed some things. He is just happy to have me back, just as happy as I am to be back.”

(On his growth)
“A lot of it is just growing with the guys. Growing with Michael [Clayton], Antonio [Bryant], Kellen [Winslow], Jerramy [Stevens], just all of the running backs. Just growing and a lot of us being more in sync. That is obviously our first actual game situation in with each other. It was a good learning experience for us because now I get to feel those guys out better. It’s a lot of things that you can’t emulate in practice that we got to experience in the game. The Redskins, you have to give them credit. They did some different things that we didn’t see on film and they made plays and we didn’t.”

(On if there were a lot of plays created for the short passing game)
“To me, I thought that we had both [short and long plays]. We had our most success on offense moving the ball balance wise in the first half. That’s when we had two more opportunities to make big plays. In the second half, they played a little more of a base defense out of different types of zone coverages and we had success running the ball. The plays were pretty balanced. In the second half, it’s tough to get plays downfield when you are playing against max coverage and at the same time have the running backs underneath. That was why we were able to move the chains on our last drive with Cadillac [Williams] picking up two first downs with his catching ability.”

(On being able to utilize all the weapons the Buccaneers have on offense)
“It comes back to just getting in sync, growing, and understanding what our strengths and our weakness are, where to put the guys. When the guys are ready for the right situation we have to capitalize on them when they are open. A lot of it is just us growing to more in sync with one another and trusting one another so that when we get a premier look we have to attack it right now and get a big play out of it.”

(On getting on the same page)
“For one part it’s the fact of it’s a new quarterback. In practice, you can’t really emulate the things in a game. It’s different speeds, obviously. I know for myself, what would help me out a little bit is slowing myself down a little bit. Just to get in sync in regards to the timing of the routes and everything so that once those guys come up and down field, I will be ready and not be on my third read. We had an offensive coordinator change and the guys are handling it very well. It’s always going to be mental errors. That’s natural. That’s a part of playing games and knowing in the season. It’s about how many of those mental errors we reduce. That’s what it is. I wouldn’t say it’s more so the change of offense because the guys are handling it very well. It’s our first time together as a whole offense when I’m first in there and now I have a better feel for those guys. There are a lot of things you just can’t emulate in practice that we finally got to emulate on Sunday.”

(On the Eagles rivalry)
“Yeah, it’s a Philadelphia tradition – big NFC matchups, in the playoffs, some they won, some they lost. I think it was consecutive years they were beaten out in the same spot almost, and it became a rivalry. There have been a lot of changes since then but it’s going to be a tough matchup on Sunday.”

(On the chance to make a big turnaround)
“It would be a turnaround. Really, we’re starting to get into the meat of our schedule, facing some really tough teams, NFC teams and we’ve got some divisional games coming up. Right now it’s really important for us to be able to flip our performances. I believe last Sunday we did enough to win but we just didn’t win the game. We had the ball with two minutes to go in the fourth quarter, that’s the situation you want to be in. We’ve just got to be able to take advantage of those opportunities.”

(On if Sunday’s loss fueled their fire)
“Overall I believe it was one of our best performances. As a team, we performed, and that was a great change to see. With that, taking that and building on that is really something positive.”

(On the running game)
“The running game’s getting better and that’s the coaches. The coaches have really been putting in a lot of time, and I respect them a lot for trying to do something to complement the offensive line, complement the running backs. It’s working out to be positive. Now having Josh, of course, helps out with the rushing yards, but the running game is really starting to pick it up.”

(On if Cadillac Williams looks the same as he did pre-injury)
“He looks very similar. Of course, he’s not as young as he was then, either. As time goes on, I guess guys get into a groove to where they feel comfortable, the runs they really like. When he was fresh in the league he was doing just about everything under the sun. He’s really good in the one-on-one. He’s coming into what he’s comfortable at and doing it very well.”

(On some of the rules they are getting so far on Michael Vick)
“There is a little tape on him. We know that he is Michael Vick, he is capable of anything. He can throw it down the field; he can get you with his feet. We are just going to go in and treat him like any other quarterback and be ready for anything.”

(On how you defend against a player like Michael Vick)
“Michael Vick is Michael Vick. In two years or maybe even three, he is still that guy. You saw some of his runs in the preseason and games. We all have to pursue. Not that we haven’t been doing it but there is even more pressure with that threat.”

(On the Philadelphia defense)
“They’re a very physical team. They do a lot of mixing in coverages. They’ll come with a lot of different kinds of blitzes – I mean, all kinds. We’ve got to be on our Ps and Qs this week.”

(On if there is a desire to beat the Eagles)
“No doubt. We love playing the Eagles. In ’06, what I do remember about that ballgame was it was a very physical game. They’re a very physical team, a team that’s going to hit you in the face, a team that’s going to try to impose its will on you. We’re definitely motivated and looking forward to the challenge.”

(On what he’s heard about the hostile environment in Philadelphia)
“I don’t know too much but I’ve heard little things about how rowdy their fans get, little things like that. I like playing in opposing stadiums so I’m going to have a lot of fun with it.”

(On how he feels)
“I’m good. I feel good. My body’s holding up, so it feels good. I can’t complain.”

(On if the absence due to two knee injuries has kept the rest of him fresher)
“You’re right, but I would definitely take my body being pounded than the two knees. I’m well-rested, feel good and have fresh legs. I’m ready to go.”

(On if he feels the running game is getting back on track)
“No doubt. Up front, those guys came off the ball. We did a lot of good things. We definitely dissected the film and we left a lot of plays out there, a lot of things out there. Once young Josh [Johnson] comes along and we start playing together and get better, the sky’s the limit.”

Courtesy of Buccaneers Public Relations Department

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