News

Print
RSS

Transcripts: Smith, Ryan Press Conferences

Posted Aug 16, 2014

Head coach Mike Smith and Quarterback Matt Ryan spoke to the media after Saturday's 32-7 loss against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium.

Head coach Mike Smith
Opening remarks:

“It was very obvious that we didn’t play well in any phase of the game tonight. We had breakdowns in all three phases. We had way too many penalties, weren’t able to convert on third down, weren’t able to get off the field on third-and-long, had a punt blocked, returned field goal blocked – not anywhere close to the level that we need to play and perform at. We’ve got to get much better.”

On WR Julio Jones’ return and T Sam Baker’s situation:

“Julio got an opportunity to get out on the field today with the rest of the offense, and that’s always a good sign. We wanted to get him a prescribed number of plays. We got him very close to the number that we wanted. In terms of Sam Baker, I don’t have an update. We’ll have more information in the next 24 hours, and as soon as we do, we’ll let you guys know.”

On some of the breakdowns that led to giving up explosive plays:

“We didn’t tackle well. We had some mental errors where the rotation was not in the right direction, and you’re going to give up big plays. We had some third-and-longs that we didn’t convert on. We had that one explosive run where we lost leverage on the backside. Those are areas that we have to address. It was not the type of football that we know we are capable of playing or the type of football that we are going to play.” 

On what he saw in the offense that was not working on third downs:

“Again, we’ve got to be effective on third downs. We’ve got to try to get ourselves in the third and manageables. We didn’t do that as well as we needed to, and we didn’t convert. I thought early on that the pass protection was sufficient. I think later on it broke down. We had way too many penalties there, especially in the second half. We were called for offensive holding a number of times to call back positive plays, and those are areas that we’ve got to address.”

On having more pressure on defensive front and outside last week:

“I think yes, there was more probably pass rush in this game than last week. The big thing for us, we’ve got to address things that we didn’t do well and there are many, so we have a lot of work that we need to get accomplished. Everyone knows that the third preseason game is the game when you go through dry run in preparation for the regular season. My hat is off to the Houston Texans, they came out and played a good solid football game. We did not match it.”

On OL Sean Renfree’s game performance:

“I thought Sean did some nice things when he had his opportunity to get in there. Again, some of the plays later on in the game may look like one thing happened on the field and could be something completely different. I don’t want to talk specifically about plays, but we all have to be seeing the defensive the same way and know what we are running when come out of the huddle.”

On positive with RB Devonta Freeman and DE Ra’Shede Hageman:

“There will always be positive guys individually, there will be some guys that did some good things. We had a touchdown called back on what I thought was a very nice run, a good cut by Devonta. Again, standing on the sideline, I was just trying to observe as much as I could and take it all in. I thought, from what I saw, Ra’Shede did some good things. There are always going to be positives, it is never as bad as you thought, but never as good, but right now, it is not the type of football that we want to put out there. I think every man in that locker room would tell you that.”

On moving Jake Matthews to left tackle:

“Again, I don’t want to speculate in terms of what we would do. We would have a number of options. Again, our number one goal would be to put the five best offensive linemen out there. We obviously know that he is one of the five best because he is a starter. Is he our best left tackle, our best option? That is something that we will have to determine if we have to address that.”

On how T Jake Matthews played:

“I think that Jake did some good things. He got matched up and had some tough battles, but I think that he did a nice job. He is going to be a good player in this league.”

On the trouble the Falcons had with special teams:

“We usually don’t have those types of issues. That is something that in the preseason, you’re using a lot of different guys in different positions, basically trying to evaluate how those guys are going to be able to handle the different positions. When you get ready for the season it’s completely different in terms of the way you game plan. Right now, we’re giving lots of guys opportunities to participate on special teams and see what roles they can’t handle. We had some issues tonight on special teams that we will definitely address, but again there is no game planning we are just trying to get an evaluation process on all these guys.”

On penalties and defensive holding being a problem during this game versus last week:

“It was called more times tonight. Obviously we were flagged more. I thought our guys did a good job in the first game. We’re still going through a process of how this is going to be called. This is a point of emphasis that the league has mandated and we’re going to be going through, all of us, coaches and players, in terms of how it is going to be officiated through the preseason, but we can’t have holding penalties on third down and long. You just can’t do it. It gives people a new set of downs."

Quarterback Matt Ryan
On getting in a rhythm with his offense:

“We had a couple of opportunities on third down and didn’t’ convert as many as we needed to, obviously, to keep those drives going. I thought we ran the ball pretty effectively, but had a few plays here and here that got us off schedule and when you do that against a good defense, it’s tough to overcome those mistakes. We had opportunities to make plays, but we didn’t make them. Those are things moving towards preseason game three that we can correct.”

On WR Julio Jones being back on the field:

“I thought Julio (Jones) looked good. It’s good to have him back. Obviously, he’s a dynamic player for our offense and somebody we feel like is a game changer. I thought he did a nice job out there tonight. Certainly, I think there will be improvement for all of us from week two to week three, but I think it was a good start. It’s amazing how a play here or there changes how a game feels, how a preseason game feels when you’re only getting a couple of drives. We had an opportunity on the first third down situation. We took a chance down the field.  I’ve got to give him a better chance to keep his feet inbounds, but that’s one of those things that moving forward we need to make those plays and I think we will.”

On being disappointed about not having longer drives:

“Obviously, every week you want to start fast and we did a good job of that last week and didn’t do a good job of that this week. One of the areas we were effective last week was third down in that first unit and tonight we weren’t very effective on third down.”

On what the failed drives had in common:

“I think it was the third downs. We had chances, we had opportunities and we had some third and manageables that we feel are- those third and five, third and six- those are third downs that we feel we should execute at a high percentage, and we didn’t do that tonight.”

On Houston Texans OLB Jadeveon Clowney:

“He’s a very good player. We knew that in the practices we had this week. He lives up to it. He’s a big, athletic guy; very quick and had two plays that threw us off. The sack and the tackle for a loss in the running game, so I’m very impressed.”

Recent News