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Quotable: Thursday Locker Room


Q: You guys look at the standings and you're two back of them. Maybe you can make up one, two possibly, but three would be really tough.
A: "Well you know division games are always important and I think for us our focus is on playing well. And that kind of takes care of all the other things. If we just focus on doing the little things making sure that individually we all play well on Monday night then you got to just let the chips fall where they may and just play it out."

Q: You look across the sideline from you and you see Drew Brees and you have to have a lot of admiration for what he's been able to do.
A: "I definitely do. I have a lot of respect for Drew. He's a great person off the field and is having another great season. He's so meticulous with his work ethic that it's no surprise that he goes out there and plays well on Sundays and Mondays. I always have had a lot of admiration for him and I wish him the best."

Q: Do you see thing that you could pick up and learn from him?
A: "You know a lot during the offseason you look at some things and you try and study what some guys are doing around the league and Drew is one of those guys that you have to look at. Because in my opinion he is one of the top quarterbacks in this league and has done a great job. So in the offseason we did but during the regular season you really have to focus in on yourself, self scouting, scouting your opponents and making sure that you're prepared that week to go."

Q: Last week was probably physically the most challenging for you as far as taking hits and getting knocked down. Is it possible to put it behind you and is it tougher to bounce back from a week like that?
A: "No, I think that's the NFL. There's going to be weeks that you are going to get knocked around and that's playing this position in this league. Our guys do such a great job upfront that you don't often see that. It's just one of those weeks you just have to bounce back from it and focus on this week. You can't beat yourselves twice you know what I mean? We lost last week and now the motivation is going out and winning this week. I think the guys have done a great job of that."

Q: You guys have said all along that good teams don't lose two games in a row. Tall order here when you face possibly the best team in the NFL and arguably in the NFC.
A: "That's been one of our goals as a team is to try and not drop back to back games and that doesn't change regardless of who you're playing. You've got to out there motivated to win and feel like you can do that. But all that stuff is secondary. Really what it boils down to is that Thursday, Friday, and Saturday we're doing everything we can to put ourselves in a position to play well Monday night. I think in this locker room guys do a great job of that and that's what we need to focus on."

Q: What's it going to take to get the running game going?
A: "I think this week we're playing against a good defense. They obviously bring a lot of pressure and do a great job with that. For us it's just the details. Trying to be physical up front making sure that I carry out my fakes to try to open some things up. Just trying to get better at what we do."

Q: What do you specifically need to do better to prevent another lose?
A: "Well I think that the biggest thing is you can't turn the football ball over. Anytime you lose the turnover battle in this league it's tough to come back and win the football game. That's my focus this week is to be better with the football, but at the same time you can't lose that aggressiveness. You have to continue to go out there and try to make plays. That's kind of the art of playing this quarterback position. That's one of those things you have to think about week in and week out. It definitely is a fine line. So remain aggressive and trust what you see, but at the same time you've got to protect the football."

Q: How does the Saints offense compare to yours? They score a lot of points but if you guys are one you can score a lot of points too.
A: "We feel like we can score and we feel like we've got some talent to make plays at different times, but with that said it's a team effort. Week in and week out we've got it requires three phases to go out there and play well. As an offensive player we are just trying to pull our weight and do everything we can. We obviously need to do a better job."

Tony Gonzalez

Q: You guys look at the standings and you're already two back of them. Falling three back would be really tough.
A: "Yeah it would be a tough thing but it's something that we hope doesn't happen. That's why we're preparing getting ourselves ready for this game. It's going to be a tough game there's no doubt about it, going in there on Monday Night Football. It's going to be loud in there and it's a division game, but that's why they play the game. Hopefully we will come out on top."

Q: Do you get excited about these kinds of games?
A: "Yeah I get excited about all of them. I love playing football. You're going to get excited because it's a division game and it's a game that we've got to have. That's why I keep coming back to it, that's why they play the game. Hopefully we will come out on top."

Q: As a guy who plays offense you study defense and what you guys can do to win the game, but on the other hand as an offensive play do you have an appreciation for what the Saints have done?
A: "Yeah you've got to appreciate it and you've got to respect it. Drew has been down there for I don't know how many years now and I remember when Drew was in San Diego and doing really well out there. I think just being in that system working with Coach Payton I think really he's obviously understanding where everybody is. Kind of like Payton is down there. He has been in that system forever and they're humming right now. They're on fire right now but hopefully we can get them off track a little bit."

Q: Just as hot as Darren Sharper.
A: "He studies film and he's a veteran. He has been around for a long time. I think it's his 13th year. We came in together. When you're around that long you've kind of seen everything. The defense they're doing a lot of blitzing and the quarterbacks are hurrying their throws and he's just picking them apart. We're conscious of that and we know the blitz is coming. So hopefully we can make the adjustments and make plays, make them pay for it."

Q: And not that you would want to make the tackle, but the guy's propensity to score touchdowns really is quit staggering.
A: "Yeah he's a great player and a good guy too. It's going to be a challenge but that's the NFL. Week in and week out you're going to get challenged and it's going to be fun."

Q: Tony what do you have to do to differently from last week to turn the outcome around this week?
A: "We've obviously got to play better in all phases. I don't think its one particular thing. We came out and had a good first quarter. The opening drive was good. The defense had two three and outs in a row, but we've just got to keep that momentum going if anything. Otherwise in every aspect of the game we've got to improve. I know that's really not the answer you're looking for, but really it's everything."

Q: Well how does it happen? You start out so strong and then it just turns on you?
A: "I don't know. Well we looked at the film and obviously we gave some pressure up. We hadn't really been doing that all year. We'll make those adjustments and corrections. This offensive line is one of the best in the NFL and I know that they're going to respond very well this week."

Q: Everyone is talking about the Saints offense, but this is a team that can put up points as well.
A: "I don't know if we're quit there yet, but we're definitely moving towards that direction. I think that obviously the advantage that they have is that they've been together for a number of years now and they've really gotten that system down. This is my first year, but only there second year in a great offense. Mike Mularkey is a genius. So we've just have to keep getting down that chemistry. Figure out which plays are working the best and obviously we're going to go out there and execute."

Q: What do you think about your counterpart Jeremy Shockey? He had a big game last week.
A: "He had a real big game. I watch all those tight ends. Jeremy and I go back a number of years and I'm happy for him. He's doing great and I love seeing that, but hopefully not this week."

Q: You guys have said all along that good teams don't lose two games in a row. This is a pretty tough stretch to keep that intact.
A: "It is a tough two game stretch and we've talked about it, obviously it is no secret. You don't want to lose two in a row, but this is a tough challenge. We've just got to be up to it. I think we're up to it. I think we're going to go out there and we're going to play a good football game and may the best team win."

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