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Transcript: Mike Smith Press Conference

Head coach Mike SmithOpening Statement:

"Good afternoon.  Obviously, the game didn't turn out the way we wanted it to last night.  It was a hard fought game.  I thought there were some areas we did improve in, but there are some areas that we have to get a lot better at."

On the Julio Jones report:

"Julio injured his foot last night.  He saw our doctors this morning.  He is going to have a second opinion tomorrow over in Charlotte, North Carolina.  The first reports were not encouraging, but we will wait to see what the second opinion comes back as."

On it being premature to report that Julio is out for the season:

"It would be premature at this point in time, yes it would.  Again, he is going over to Charlotte for a second opinion tomorrow, and when we have something more definitive you guys will be the first to know."

On this being a related injury to the one he head at the combine:

"Guys, I don't really want to get into the specifics of what foot it is.  Again, he did injure his foot in the ballgame last night, was able to complete the game, and had a test this morning.  He is going for a second opinion at this time, but the first diagnosis was not that encouraging."

On the depth at that position:

"Well, he is going to be a hard guy to replace, if we have to replace him.  We've got guys that are on our roster, Kevin Cone and Drew Davis.  Harry Douglas will be asked to step up, and if we have to make a roster move, we will look at all options that are available to us there.  We've got a couple of receivers on the practice squad that have been working with us, that know our offense and understand our scheme."

On Roddy White's hamstring injury:

"No, Roddy did injure his hamstring last night and wasn't able to return to the game.  Saw him this morning and spoke with him this morning, and we will have to see how that thing turns around over the next few days."* *

On the tackling last night:

"We had some shoddy tackling last night in the game.  I thought that there was some crisp tackling, but it was very inconsistent.  We had a missed tackle that went in for a touchdown towards our locker room on a little simple flat route.  We had two missed tackles on the first two plays on their two minute drive, so we did not tackle as well as we needed to in the game last night."

On the last drive and what did not work for the defense:

"I am not going to get into the specifics.  There were some physical breakdowns.  There was a mental breakdown on one specific play.  I think it's kind of reminiscent of what has happened through the first five games.  We have not been as efficient as we need to be at the end of ballgames and finish football games.  That was too easy for them to go down the field and attempt the winning field goal."

On Julio's catch towards the end of the game and when his injury occured:

"I spoke with Julio and Julio is a tough guy, in terms of the exact play, we think we've pretty much pinpointed when it happened."

On it being before that play:


On the pressure of last night that the Jets were getting on the Atlanta offense:

"We gave up two sacks in the ballgame last night.  We were not able to get the ball down the field as much as we would to have liked to, because of the pressure on the quarterback.  We had some opportunities, but we were not able to hold the football.  Again, it's an area that we have to continue to work at.  This week is our bye week, we'll spend tomorrow and Thursday, working on the Atlanta Falcons, looking at everything we do.  We have some emphasis points that we have already set out prior to the season that we wanted to look at, based on the teams we are going to be facing in the second half of the season.  We're going to look at a lot of things and nothing is sacred, in terms of scheme or personnel.  We've got to evaluate everything."

On the biggest aspect the defense needs to improve on with the bye week coming up:

"Well, our third down efficiency right now is 32 in the League, and if you don't get off the field on third down, it makes it very, very difficult, you can't get the ball back to the offense.  We have not been good in end of the game in two minute situations.  I think those are crucial areas we have to improve on, and we are obviously giving up way to many points on the defensive side."

On the offensive line:

"As I just said, we gave up two sacks in the ball game last night.  There was some improvement.  I thought that the quarterback got pressured a couple times, especially when we were trying to get the ball down the field, we didn't get enough time to get the ball and our quarterback had to release it before we really needed to have him do it. There were some individuals that showed some improvement, and there were some guys that stepped backwards.  That is not just on the offensive line, I think that is across the board on our football team."

On seeing blitzes in the last drive:

"Again, I'm not going to talk about specifics.  I think you can watch the tape.  I know you have access to the rewind, and I think you can make your own conclusion from that."

On used to winning close games and how he addresses it with the guys:

"There has been conversation about where we're at through the first quarter and through this second game in the second quarter.  We're very disappointed, we're discouraged.  I think we are living proof of how close games are in the NFL.  It comes down to a handful of plays, and we haven't made them.  In years past, we've been in games like these and we've made the plays.  Unfortunately, we have not made the plays this season.  It has just been a handful of them.  We have to find a way as coaches and as players collectively to make those plays."

On it being a quick learning process for the young players or more of an opportunity:

"Well, I think it is both.  It is a quicker opportunity for them to learn, because they are actually going out there and having to go out there and play in games.  Again, injuries cannot be an excuse in the NFL.  Every team has injuries, and we will not allow that to be an excuse.  We, as a coaching staff, and we, as a team, there is going to be 46 guys on our active roster, we have to go out there and perform, and we haven't performed up to the abilities we need to, to win football games, and win them at the end this far. "

On Matt Bosher's two tackles:

"That is a big concern.  I thought we took a big step back on special teams last night.  Anytime you get a punt blocked, your chances of winning a football game, your chances are reduced. You usually can't overcome that and on our first punt, we had a punt blocked, and basically we were fortunate that our defense was able to go out there and hold the Jets to a field goal in that situation.  The other special teams play was on a punt return, our punt coverage unit, and it was compounded with not only our punter having to make the tackle, but there was a 15 yard penalty.  There were two short fields that we had to deal with as a defense in the ballgame last night."

On going after the quarterback or not:

"Well, I think you've got to mix it up.  Like I said, I'm not going to talk specifically about specific plays and play calls in that situation, but I do believe this, if you watch the tape you will be able to make your own observation, in terms of whether there was 4-man pressures, 5-man pressures, or 6-man pressures. "

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