Buffalo Postgame Interviews

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Interviews in the Jets locker room after their 13-3 loss to the Bills at the Meadowlands on Sunday:       

HEAD COACH ERIC MANGINI

Very disappointing game. It was very similar to a lot of the games we've been in. They've been close. We had them backed up there, us down by the three. The deep ball, we had two defenders there and somehow their player comes down with it and we can't quite make that play. Offensively, we couldn't sustain drives on third down. We did not do a good job there. [Aaron] Schobel had two forced fumbles. We were 0-for-2 in the red area. Those are usually areas of great strength — red area and third down — for us. They historically have been. We've been working on those but just haven't been very good in those two areas the past three weeks.

I thought defensively we did some really positive things. We consistently pressured the quarterback and did a nice job checking the things they were showing to us. I was really pleased with the things we did there and the progress we made. It is just disappointing when you give up a ball like we did at the end with them backed up and in a three-point game. It's just disappointing.

On making the quarterback change late in the game and whether Kellen Clemens will start next week …

I'm not sure. That's a change I made at that point. I will evaluate it tomorrow.

On the offensive struggles after the opening drive …

There were times where we had drives going but we just did not convert on third down, not consistently enough. That's a problem. That's something that we've been in the top five or the top 10 in the league the past two years.

On whether this game seemed like the same movie when compared to the earlier games this season …

It's not the same movie. It's the same ending, just not the same movie.

On losing getting old …

It's disappointing. It's disappointing because — and I've said this multiple times — it's disappointing because these guys care. These guys work. They care. This is not a situation where you have some guys who are not vested in the process that aren't trying to do everything they can do to win and to prepare. It's disappointing for them. I see the things they do day in and day out and the way they play.

On why practice is not translating on Sundays …

It's been different things at different times. I'd say in this game we weren't very good on third down, we weren't very good in the red zone. We weren't very good in terms of minimizing Aaron Schobel and in giving up a deep ball to Lee Evans. With two defenders there to play the football, I'll have to look at the play and determine how Darrelle [Revis] played it and how Abram Elam played it. But that was a good situation for us having them backed up down there, down by three. Usually if you keep them down there and you convert, that changes into points.

On the confidence of the team …

I don't think it's a function of confidence. I think it's a function of consistent execution. It has been different in different areas in different games. We talk about it all the time, the need for consistency, the need to play a complete complementary football game.

On how the consistency has changed from last season …

I've talked about this a lot. Each year is different and the things you did last year you have to be able to do again. You have to be able to execute in critical situations, you have to be able to protect the football, you have to be able to convert on third downs, you have to be able to stop the run. Those things do not automatically translate from year to year.

On the reason for making the QB change…

At that point, the game had shifted from a three-point game to a 10-point game and at that point it was a very tight situation. I felt like Chad [Pennington] gave us the best opportunity, but at the 10-point mark I felt that I wanted to take a look at Kellen.

On evaluating the offense …

I will look at it more closely — moving the football effectively, not converting on third downs. That third-and-1, we ran the ball, and that's a look that we practice against and what we anticipated and we didn't move the pile very much at all and that's an issue as well. In the red zone, we put the ball on the ground with the play we had with Leon [Washington] and that's an opportunity we missed in the red zone where that could have easily been points, at least a field goal.

On Clemens' performance …

The last interception, when you are throwing that ball up, the key thing is, it's called a "Hail Mary" for a reason. You are hoping for the best. You've got it drawn up where the body should be. Like last week's game, you're hoping it bounces right. The interception into trap coverage, that wasn't a very good call. We didn't really give him a great opportunity there.

On Clemens' near-sack/interception …

He was trying to make something happen. He had been hit twice and was trying to keep the drive going. I'll have to look at it in context. You want to protect the football at that point. I don't know if he thought he had a shot to get it to him or not, but I think it was him trying to make a play.

On the team possibly not responding to coaching …

The score was 6-3 at the four-minute mark. I don't think that's the function of anyone on this team not working hard and not trying and not putting in enough effort. I have spent a lot of time with these guys and I don't think there's anything from this game that indicates anything but what this game was — a game that we weren't able to execute in some key areas and finish. I don't think there is a bigger meaning there.

On a possible shift toward playing younger players due to the record …

We've played young guys. We played them last year with Nick [Mangold] and Brick [D'Brickashaw Ferguson] and Leon, Wallace [Wright] and Stacy [Tutt]. David [Harris] just got more playing time because Jonathan [Vilma] was placed on IR and Darrelle has been starting all season. I don't think that's been a fundamental shift either.

QB CHAD PENNINGTON

On the passing game …

They did a good job. They had a great game plan and really stuck it to us. As an offense, their defense did a really good job. They had mixed up their coverage, they mixed up their looks and kept us off balance all game.

On the last stretch of games …

I don't have anything to be ashamed of. It's a tough stretch that we're all going through. I don't have a lot of answers right now. All you can do when you go through a stretch like this is to evaluate yourself as an individual and continue to see where you can improve and do the best you can. You can't control everything outside of you. You can't control all of the things around you. Good, bad or indifferent, you can't control those things and you have to continue to fight and keep fighting.

On understanding a possible change at QB …

I understand the nature of this business and I understand the dynamics of our organization and what is going on within our organization. Whatever happens, I am going to be me. I'm the type of guy who is going to give all my teammates full support and do everything I can to make myself better as a player and make my team better. Whatever decision Coach decides to make is his decision and it is out of my control. I will keep working.

On the dynamics of his position …

I understand the type of questions you guys have been asking about the quarterback position. It's not a secret. I've been asked a thousand questions about my position so I understand all the questions being asked and I understand all of the statements being made. I don't have a feeling one way or the other. I'm not upset. I'm not negative towards anyone or anything. I'm totally focused on me as a professional and how I respond to the adversity. I'm more focused on how I respond to the challenges that have been brought my way and the adversity I have faced as a player and the adversity we have faced as a team. That's most important.

On the change of QB vs. the Bills …

Coach Schottenheimer came to me and told me Kellen [Clemens] was going in. That's a coach's decision. I've been on the other side of that, too. When Kellen came off the field, I made sure to talk to him and ask him if he had any questions, if there was anything he would like me to take a look at, and then go from there.

On if the Jets offense didn't click or if Bills defense scheme worked …

I would say it was a little bit of both. They did a really good job. If you looked at the last couple of weeks, they have changed. From their 0-3 start they have changed. They have even changed some things from our first game when we played up there. They are playing really good team defense. They still have the bend-but-don't-break mentality. They are doing some good things to counter their normal tendencies they have had in the past.

It was a combination of them doing some really good things in their game plan and a combination of us being inconsistent. One week we put up 31 points and then the next week we put up three. You have to give them credit and then you also have to look at yourself to see exactly what you could have done better. Not to necessarily put up 31 points, but at least giving yourself a better chance to win.

On feeling like he's "on a tightrope" week to week …

I don't know if that's the case or not. I don't know exactly what Coach is thinking with the situation. I haven't really tried to dive in to see what he is thinking about. I have plenty of things I need to think about myself, as far as my personal performance and trying to get ourselves out of this hole. I really haven't thought of it that way. I just try to do the best I can in my preparation and do what I need to do within the frame of our offense and the frame of our game plan to try and help us execute and succeed and become successful.

On speaking with Clemens before he went in …

He was getting warmed up. I've been in this league long enough to know when to say something and to know when to shut up. I didn't feel like that was the time to go over and say something, whereas in the Baltimore game, I made sure I was there for him just like he was there for me. We have a great relationship and we don't let the external things bother us, whether I'm playing and he's there to support me or he's playing and I'm there to support him. At that time I didn't think it was necessary. It's a difficult situation in itself and after the first possession I asked him a couple questions if he needed anything.

On his performance today …

Just from my own recollection, I know one play I would have liked to convert on. Other than that, I will have to look at the film and I'll be able to tell you Wednesday exactly how I feel about everything. Due to short-term memory, there's only one play right now that I would have liked to convert on.

On the Jets' running game …

We felt like we had to go in with a balanced game plan. We felt that in the first game, our attitude was that we were going to run the football and we were going to be stubborn about running the football. It didn't quite work out for us the way we thought it would. Going into this game we felt like our best chance was to be balanced and then play off of what they were doing. When they gave us the right looks to run the football, we were going to run it and when they gave us the right looks to throw it, we were going to throw it.

You have to give them credit about being able to change their game plan and change their looks. They actually worked off of their own tendencies and made some adjustments off their own tendencies that we saw on film, so that those tendencies didn't show up quite as often as they had in the past. They did a great job of doing that. Throughout the whole game, it's real easy to get impatient when you are struggling as an offense and I just felt like it was one of those games where neither offense was doing a lot, but if you got impatient as a quarterback and as an offense you could quickly flip that switch on yourself with a turnover or things like that to play right into their hands. I just didn't feel like we needed to force some things down the field. In a 3-3 ballgame, even in a 6-6 ballgame, eventually those things will come.

On the team's transition from last year …

You have got to understand the nature of this league. If you look at our 10 wins last year, they weren't all blowouts. They all came down to the fourth quarter, they were games where either our opponent made a mistake and we capitalized or we were able to make a big play and squeak a win out. That's how most of our games went. This year we have been on the flip side of that. Last year we could have easily been 6-10. This year, with the same guys, same coaches, same everything, we haven't been able to find out a way to put those situations in our favor.

On the team's confidence …

I think our guys feel pretty good about preparation and about going into games. It's just a matter of making a play or not making a play. We haven't. Across the board, starting with myself and going down the line, we haven't made the necessary plays. We have made plays in spurts. We have made plays offensively where we could be a well-oiled machine and be very productive and very exciting. Then on the flip side, we have done some things where we look like we couldn't do anything. It's a consistency factor.

Last year we complemented each other very well in the three facets of the football game, special teams, offense and defense. When one side was struggling, another side was able to step up and make a play and relieve the pressure, relieve the tension of what was going on. This year we haven't been able to do that. When one side is struggling, the other side could be struggling at the same time or just doesn't come up with the play to flip the momentum. It seems like we have been fighting that momentum thing every week. That's why I will say all of us have been frustrated, because of the success we had last year and because of the success we have experienced. We have been fighting like crazy to get that going, to get that back and get us going in the right direction.

On his reaction when told Clemens was going in …

As a professional athlete, I just don't think it's in our being that you think negatively or you think you are going to be sat down. You wouldn't make it this far and reach this league thinking negatively and thinking bad things are going to happen, being pessimistic. So yes, I was surprised.

WR LAVERANUES COLES

On not executing during games …

I guess that's what it is. That's what [Coach Mangini] said, and that's what it is. I like to evaluate myself and try to look at things in a positive way to correct myself as a player. One of the main things is trying to make sure you're doing exactly what you're supposed to do at any given time during the game and trying to execute.

On if everyone on the entire team needs to look at himself individually ...

I'm not sure if that's the key, but that's one thing we should do. We just need to pull together and look at ourselves with a tough and meaningful eye. Hopefully, we can get this worked out.

On not being able to move the ball after the first drive …

We have to give them credit. They had a great game plan. They came out and executed well. Defensively, they played pretty well from top to bottom.

On the difference between the two Buffalo games this year …

They played their coverages. They did an excellent job trying to figure out what we were doing. Again, you have to give them credit. They came prepared and played a very good game.

On who should be blamed for the losses …

At this point, it's something the guys upstairs in the front office will take a hard look at and try to figure something out. When you're in a situation like this, there's a lot of blame to be placed, but you can blame it on just about every guy on this team because we're all a part of it. At this point, we just need to dig down and ask ourselves, "What can you do to try to make this team better?"

It's not that the guys aren't putting the work in. I see with my own eyes how hard guys work, how guys prepare and the time and effort they put in to get ready to play a ballgame. For some reason, it's just not translating. I can't put a finger on it. It's just something our coaches and staff will have to help us figure out. That way we can transfer it during games.

C NICK MANGOLD

On if the team's situation is getting worse …

It's not getting any better. You hate it. It's horrible and we have to get some consistency.

On the offense getting worse …

We've had some good things and bad things. We have to find the bad things and eliminate them.

On playing next week …

We get back on Monday, we will watch film and we'll see what happens.

On the lack of rhythm with the running game …

Just little things. You missed a block, you come back and you have the same play, and then you miss it again. It is something that can't happen. I have to go back and see why that happened. It's just the little things that are killing us.

DE SHAUN ELLIS

On the fans leaving early …

I wasn't really worried about the fans. Jets fans are a tough crowd. We have to come in and prove to them that we can win a game. Right now they have the right to leave, boo us and do whatever they need to do.

On this season compared to past seasons …

You really can't. It's something different. In a couple games we had the lead and just lost it. It's tough. It's been five weeks in a row when it could have gone our way and hasn't.

On this season compared to the 4-12 season in 2005 …

That was different. We have all of our guys intact. For some reason we're just not coming out on the winning side. It's tough to lose games like this when you have leads and it slips away from you.

On feelings of anger, frustration and disappointment in the locker room …

It's all that. We have to stay together as a team, keep playing, pursuing and pressing on. It has to break at some point. It just can't continue to go this way. We have to go out every week and put together a better effort than we've been displaying.

On continuing to lose even though the team is relatively healthy …

The breaks are just not going our way. We're pursuing and playing, we're just not making the plays to turn the game around. It's gut-wrenching and pretty much unexplainable. I really can't explain it.

QB KELLEN CLEMENS

On getting in the game and how it ended …

It was good to get in. I thought with more than three minutes left, still three timeouts and only down 10, the game was not out of hand at that point. Unfortunately, the first interception really hurt us. As far as getting in there and getting some time, it was a good experience.

On the interceptions …

We ran a similar play earlier and I thought we saw an opportunity to squeeze one in. Terrence McGee did a nice job at playing a different technique the second time around. I kind of saw that he was falling off. I thought I'd put the ball far enough out of bounds where only our guy was going to get it, but McGee did a nice job of rerouting and coming back for the football. It was a nice play on his part and unfortunately a costly error on my part,

On coming in so late in the game …

That's what we train for. We try to practice situations like that. They knew we were going to throw and we knew we were going to throw, but we've got good plays, we've got good players. We just didn't execute everything as perfectly as we'd like.

On being ready to start next week …

My preparation will be the same week in and week out. You prepare like you're going to be the starter even when they tell you you're the backup, like last year when I was third string. You prepare the same and if your number's called, you try to be as prepared as possible to help the team. We're going to leave it up to Coach Mangini. He makes the decisions and everybody's just frustrated right now with the loss and the situation and we're going to work hard this week and try to get it corrected.

On Chad Pennington not being the problem …

I think regardless of what happened in the last three or four minutes of the game when I was in, there are multiple things we need to fix. These losses don't fall on one person or on one side of the ball. We're unfortunately loosing right now and as an entire team we're going to work hard to fix it.

On the shovel pass …

I was just trying to avoid the sack. It was not a designed shovel pass — we had some pressure and one guy on my back. I just tried to avoid the sack. At that point you want to just stop the clock if you can and a sack is pretty costly.

On understanding the mindset …

The most important thing for those of us who are inside the locker room to focus on right now is getting a second wind. Whatever thought processes are external, we keep external and we try to focus on improving this New York Jets football team and try to get this elusive second wind.

DB DARRELLE REVIS

On the touchdown reception by WR Lee Evans …

It was a great play by him. I had the ball in my hand but got bumped off by the safety. I thought I had at least knocked it down, but I looked up and he was shooting down the sideline. It was just a horrible play you don't want to see. It was not a lack of communication. I had the ball and I was going to pick it.

On his overall play …

I had a productive game. When you make mistakes on the field, you go back, correct them and move on. We have a lot more games left and have to focus on them.

On what he is accomplishing each game …

I am learning how to be a teammate, stick together, and how different offenses work. I try to be a studious guy every week as we prepare for teams.

On the Jets' inability to put together a full game …

It's something we have to be consistent on as a whole team and play four quarters. We have to stick together. We know adversity is a part of the game, and when it strikes we have to be strong about it.

On his first interception today …

The pick has nothing to do with it. I would rather settle for a win today. It's over with and we have to focus on the plays ahead.

On if he would have made the play vs. Evans if he hadn't gotten bumped ...

It depends. It depends on me, it depends on Lee Evans and the fight. He came up with the ball.

On the defensive game plan today …

We prepared great for the Bills. We wanted to show them something different than what we did the first game. We did some great things on defense.

On playing without LB Jonathan Vilma …

It was different. He is the leader and always a very vocal guy. He was a vocal guy on the sideline today, and just being around the defense helped us out.

On how well LB David Harris played …

I don't know, I'll have to look at the film. David was vocal out there, being the leader. It's kind of crazy to throw a first-year guy in there unexpectedly. David did a great job, played the leader well and played a great game.

LB DAVID HARRIS

On his confidence in starting today …

My teammates did a great job of helping me prepare this week, especially Jonathan Vilma and Eric Barton. We had a really focused week of practice. We came up a little bit short today.

On his 17 tackles …

I don't care about that. The only thing I care about is if we win or lose.

On his future as a player …

I just try to be ready when my number is called. We had an injury this week so I was asked to step in. I just tried to do the best that I could.

On his comfort level playing the 3-4 …

It's quite a transition from the 4-3. On the 3-4 I think I am doing pretty well. It just hurt that we lost today.

On being upset with a 1-7 record compared to his previous records with Michigan …

On this level everybody is good, everybody has good players. It's just the little things.

On which little things that make the difference …

I don't want to elaborate too much on it, but it was a close game. It could have gone either way, but they made more plays than we did.

On the Jets trouble with finishing games …

We always try to finish the game and play four quarters hard, but we couldn't pull it off today.

On filling in for Vilma …

Filling in for a guy like that is tough. He is our captain on defense, he has been on this defense for the last four years. He has done a great job at it. He is very vocal. He is the heart and soul of this defense. I just try to be ready when my number is called.

On Bills WR Lee Evans' catch …

He made a great play. We take our hats off to Buffalo. They made a couple more plays than we did.

TE CHRIS BAKER

On playing for a 1-7 team …

We're in every game. It's tough. I've never been on a team that is 1-7. It's definitely something we have to work to get out of.

On comparing last season to this season …

Last year we were able to make those plays late in the game. Obviously you won't make every play in those situations, but we got our fair share last year — that's why we went 10-6. Obviously this year we haven't had any of those plays so far, so its been tough. So we have to keep working.

On the team's confidence …

It's human nature as far as time to figure out what's going on, so confidence starts to lag a bit. But we have good players and the same personnel so we have to keep working.

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