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Transcripts: Falcons at Redskins

Posted Oct 7, 2012

Head coach Mike Smith and quarterback Matt Ryan react after Sunday's game against the Washington Redskins

Head coach Mike Smith

On staying in the game and winning late:

“We stayed with our game plan. We were moving the football. We were our own worst enemy in the first half of the ballgame until we had that scoring drive at the end of the second quarter. The time of possession in the first quarter was heavily in our favor, but we made a couple of poor plays in turning the football over. When we turn the football over, it’s hard to win and stay on schedule, but we did a nice job and got the score before half.”

On drive starts:

“That’s something we have been good at as a team. We were first in the league coming into this game in terms of drive starts. They did a nice job of flipping the field on us a couple times when we had to start from inside our 5-yard line or in the shadow of our goal post, and that makes it much more difficult as well.”

On playing a ball possession game:

“We wanted to be able to move the ball both through the air and on the ground. I’ll give my hats off to Coach [Jim] Haslett; I thought he had a very good game plan. Early on, we did a nice job; we just kind of put ourselves in harm’s way early in the ball game with the interception. That was a great individual effort by [Ryan] Kerrigan, and then we were gaining field goal range, and we had a mishandled snap, and you can’t have those types of turnovers and be successful most times.”

On if he considers winning a success when the team isn’t at its best:

“I do. In terms of showing some resiliency, you are going to have to do that. Games are going to be tight and close in this league, and you are going to have to win those close ones. We’ve done a nice job, and then it’s a great teaching tool for us because we can make the corrections that we need to make in a positive manner since we got the ‘W’ this week.”

Quarterback Matt Ryan

On the offense beginning to click during the middle of third quarter:

“We talked at halftime. We just needed to stay patient and continue to trust in the plays and needed to execute better. I think the first drive of the second half we got backed up. We did a good job of getting ourselves out, but we just couldn’t make a play. We took a chance down the field and missed on Julio [Jones]. The biggest thing we did was we didn’t flinch. We didn’t play well in the first half, but we came back and played much better in the second half and that’s what you need to do”

On what worked during the drive right before halftime:

“It was big. That’s a situation we practice all the time, the two minutes before halftime. I think there is some kind of crazy statistic that points before the half equate to wins, and so it’s an important situation. I think protection was very good. Harry Douglas made a great catch on a flag route to get us kind of going and we just kept it moving from there.”

On tight end Tony Gonzalez’s performance:

“I thought he did a great job. Tony, statistically, probably had one of the best games he’s had since he’s been a Falcon. I’m just constantly impressed by how consistent and how talented he is and for him to be in year whatever it is and playing at the level he is I’m just really, really impressed. I think his moves have gotten better too, since last year. He made a lot of guys miss on the field today, which those yards after contact after a catch are huge.”

On the interception by linebacker Ryan Kerrigan:

“That was a great play by Kerrigan. He’s a very good player. He’s a big guy and I need to do a better job of trying to get the ball around him. It was a mistake on my part but a great play on his. Those are the turnovers you can’t really have. That kind of hurt us in the first half but we put it behind us, we kept moving with the fumble too. We kept moving, battled and played much better in the second half.”


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