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Quotable: Falcons vs. Bears


Opening Statement:
"I hope everybody enjoyed that game because I can't tell you how proud I am of the 53 men on our roster and the job that the coaches did tonight. All three phases of our football team stepped up when called on. The defense stepped up and made some plays at the beginning of the ball game in the first drive. It was more of a bend but don't break. Thomas DeCoud came up with a big interception. Our return units played outstanding. We flipped the field position on them. When we got into our no-huddle offense, we were very efficient moving the football. Like I say after every game, as coaches there are a lot of things we need to correct. There will be some things that we need to take a good long, hard look at as we get ready to move on to play the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday."

Q: Talk about the turnovers in the redzone. Did that make a difference?
A: "No doubt about it. We've been playing very good redzone defense all season long. The guys made plays when the opportunities arose tonight. There were different guys making plays. On the fumble in the goal line, that was a big hit. Thomas DeCoud had a big play with the interception. I think the big play was not the last play of the game, but the previous play when we got the sack. Anytime you can get a sack in a two-minute situation, I think you enhance your chance of being successful in those red zone series."

Q: Tony Gonzalez has not played in a lot of prime time games in his career. Is that something you thought about before tonight?
A: "No, we didn't talk about this being a prime time game. We didn't care what time the kickoff was. We've got to prepare ourselves each and every week. It is nice. It was an electric atmosphere in there for our players. Our fans did a great job. They helped us on that red zone stop at the end of the game with the 5-yard penalty. That was a big play for our fans and it's a big win for our guys. Again, there were a lot of mistakes made in that ball game."

Q: What were some of the key players and what was it like to see your defense rise up?
A: "It was big. My hat goes off to Jay Cutler. He's an outstanding quarterback. He threw the ball and fit it in on some third down situations where they converted. He had the big run coming off the goal line as well during the ball game. So my hat goes off to him. Our guys kept fighting, and fighting. There was no quitting in that group of men tonight."

Q: What were your adjustments in the run game?
A: "I think we really got it going when we got to our no-huddle. We had intentions of running the no-huddle. We dictated a little bit by field position on the first three drives. We went three and out, then when we jumped into our no-huddle, I thought Matt (Ryan) did a very good job getting us into the right place. We changed the tempo up and we were able to do things in our no-huddle. I thought our coaches did a nice job. The Bears defense had a very good plan to defend the run. We just kept chipping a way at them. I thought in the third and fourth quarter that our physicality showed."

Q: Talk about Eric Weems and special teams.
A: "Our special teams really wanted to measure themselves this week. We talked about it all week long. The Chicago Bears were the number one rated special teams unit in the National Football League. It was going to be an opportunity for them to measure up against their return units. They have two outstanding returners. I thought Eric did a good job catching the ball, making good decisions, then getting north and south. He had some good plays that flipped the field position in the game tonight."

Q: Was this game of additional importance because of the tough road games ahead of you?
A: "This was the next game and we try to break our season down into quarters. When we talked to our guys and we came out of the first quarter at 3-1, we know that this next quarter, at least on paper, is a little bit different than the first quarter. We know we have a big game on the road over the next two weeks. We want to start the second quarter fast like we try to do everything around here."

Q: You said you always wanted good plays when Thomas DeCoud got his hands on the ball.
A: "He did it twice tonight and they were both big plays. Thomas was playing the ball very well in the air. He went through his reading of the route progression and played the ball. It's good to see Thomas, a young player, a third round draft pick, and second year in the League make plays like that. It's good to see these young guys continue to progress and start making plays for us."

Q: Can you talk about the Falcons pass rush?
A: "Well I thought our guys up front did a nice job. We were definitely concerned. The Bears front for is one of the strongest front four in the League. I thought our offensive line, tight ends, and backs did a nice job as well. In the protection schemes that we had in place, they did an outstanding job keep our quarterback upright. I felt that we did a nice job getting the quarterback off the spot and getting Jay off the spot. There were a couple of times that we had some rush lane and contain issues. Jay made us pay a little bit, but that's what good football players will do.

Q. Address Coy Wire's play.
A. That was a big play on the fumble recovery going in to score. That was a big, huge play. There was great penetration up front. Our defensive line created a new line of scrimmage."

Quarterback Matt Ryan

Q: Opening statementA: "This was definitely a great win for us. All 53 players made plays throughout the game and it was a concerted effort. We stop them in their late fourth quarter drive to ensure the win. We're happy to be 4-1 and ready to prepare against the Dallas Cowboys."

Q: On WR Eric Weems' kickoff return in the fourth quarter.A: "It was key for us because it provided good field position to score. He did a great job all night of giving us scoring opportunities with which to capitalize on. Our last drive with six minutes to go was a short field given to us by Eric's return. More importantly, the kickoff return team opened up good holes all game long. Everybody made plays at different points of the game to put us over the top."

Q: On the no-huddle offense.A: "We tried to do a little bit in the second half. Chicago was a tough defense to do it consistently in the game. We had to do some different things against them in effort to keep them off balance. We didn't do it as effectively as we would've like to, but we have to give them credit. They're a really physical bunch."

Q: On the go-ahead scoring drive in the fourth quarter.A: "Our focus was one play at a time. We pride ourselves in those last game situations in which the pressure is on. We try to focus on execution and I think we did a pretty good job of that in this drive. Our offensive line did an excellent job of pass protection given Chicago's numerous blitzes. I had enough time to get rid of the ball and get into Tony Gonzalez's hands on a couple of occasions. Running back Michael Turner finished the drive with his tough run. It was a great feeling."

Wide Receiver Roddy White

Q: On the play that you scored, did you think there could be a gap you could shoot?A: "Oh yeah, we went over it. They like to go to a lot of zero coverage. You know, that's what they did, they went 'zero' on that play. Matt (Ryan) got the ball out early. Tony (Gonzalez) and (Brian Finneran) made great blocks and I just kind of got up the seam and scored."

Q: Early in the season when Tony (Gonzalez) scored he gave credit to you for a heck of a block. He and Brian Finneran helped clear the path there (for you).A: "That's what we do. We go out there, we block, we run, and we tackle. We help each other out. That's just part of the game. As long as we help each other out, we'll keep getting W's."

Q: How much confidence are you playing with right now?A: "I'm playing with a lot of confidence. You know, I just want to go out there and help my team win. You know, my job is to get out there and catch passes. It's also to try and make big plays. Right now, we're rolling, we won two-straight, so we're going to try and continue this roll."

Linebacker Mike Peterson

Q: Tell me what was going on out there.A: "We're coming together. You know, I've been screaming that we have to play as a family and play as a team. We're slowly getting to that point, where guys are depending on and trusting the guy next to him."

Q: Was that a defense defining game?A: "To be a defensive player, that's the way you want to end the game. To know the game is on your shoulders, and you have to come up and make a play. That's what we did."

Q: Tell me about the redzone stop, especially the goal line stand when you guys forced two consecutive fumbles.A: "It's just the guys playing good Falcons defense. We know when we are going up against a great offense. Our job is to keep them out of the endzone. We were able to do that a couple of times tonight."

Q: Can you talk about the job Thomas Johnson did stuffing the run.A: "He's big, he's got a big body. I've been on him the last few weeks to use that big body. I think he's getting comfortable out there."

Wide Receiver Eric Weems

Q: What were your thoughts on Chicago and their performance tonight?A: "They're a heck of a good football team. They played hard, they have a great offense, they are really well coached, and they give a great effort. They're the kind of team that you have to play your best game, and fortunately, we were able to come out on top today."

Safety Thomas DeCoud

Q: Can you explain what occurred on your second interception?A: "We (Falcon's defense) played a deep pass coverage against their offense. They ran the tight end and the receiver up the seam. Once he threw the ball, I made a play on it."

Q: Did you have feeling that you were going to have a game like this?A: "I had a very good feeling. Throughout the course of the week I watched a lot of film and studied what he (Jay Cutler) liked to do, what he looked like when he made a decision to throw the ball, and I think it really helped me out today. He is the type of quarterback who's really confident in his arm. He thinks he can make every throw, so, he'll try to get every ball to his receivers when he can. I knew I had to make a play on the ball, and it paid off for me tonight."

Q: How does it feel to win this game?A: "It feels great. It feels great to keep a team like that out of the end zone. They had a lot of good drives with good field position, and they got the ball on our side of the field, so, it felt really good to keep them out of the red zone."

Tight end Tony Gonzalez

Q: What were your thoughts on the game?A: "It was a real nail-biter. I told someone on the sideline that I hate these kinds of games. It's gut wrenching when it comes down to the wire like that, but it's also exciting. It was great for our fans, and it feels really good to come out on top. I'm really happy with the way the team played. The defense played unbelievable. They came up with some huge turnovers, and they came up with the big stops when they had to. I can't say enough about it, and they really won the game for us today."

Q: Can you describe the touchdown pass in the first quarter?A: "They (Chicago) were in a cover-two defense, and it was a one on one match up. I gave the defender an out and up route, and once he went for it, Matt (Ryan) put the ball where I could get it. It was just a great play by him."

Q: Did the no huddle offense allow you guys to get into a rhythm?A: "It wasn't going they way we expected, so you have to give them (Chicago) a lot of credit. They've got one of the best defenses in the League, and we're lucky that we have the offensive weapons that we do. The no-huddle offense allowed us to disrupt what they had to do and really slowed the pass rush down. It really came up big for us today."


GAMEDAY LIVE:Complete game coverage from * FEATURE:Falcons defense stands tall in Sunday night win * GAME CENTER:Stats and more in the Game Center * FIRST TAKE:Exclusive postgame videos from * VIDEO:More Falcons-Bears video interviews and highlights * THE BEAT BLOG:In-game thoughts and stat updates * J. MIKE'S MISSIVES:Thoughts and commentary from the Managing Editor * GAME NOTES:Official game notes from the Georgia Dome press box * QUOTES:Thoughts from the Falcons postgame locker room | Bears * INACTIVES:Falcons-Bears inactives and probable starters * FORUMS:Talk about the game with other fans on FalconsLIFE

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