Short-yardage passing had a good year, except at the end of the Super Bowl. We look at the return of quarterback runs, the rise in pass-happy strategy, and 2014 success rates for offense and defense.
21 Jan 2011
compiled by Rory Hickey
"Anybody can be beat!"
"[That] felt great! Poetic justice. We know we were a much better team than we came up and represented ourselves and we were pissed off. We were ready to come back and show off what kind of a defense, what kind of a team this was, what kind of character we have. We take a lot of flack. People gave us no chance like we barely made the playoffs. We're a good football team."
-- Jets linebacker Bart Scott in a postgame interview worthy of professional wrestling after the Jets beat the Patriots 28-21
"For all you nonbelievers. Disrespect us. Talk crap about the defense like we ain't the third best defense in the league. All we hear is about [the Patriots'] defense. They can't stop a nose bleed! Twenty-fifth in the league, and we the one that gets disrespected."
-- Scott on why the Jets played with so much anger
-- Scott, after Sal Paolantonio said he would see Scott in Pittsburgh. You need to click the link to get the full effect (ESPN)
"We go to Round 3 of Mission Impossible. Maybe I'm not so wrong about everything."
-- Jets coach Rex Ryan, after his team beat the heavily favored Patriots in Foxborough on Sunday (NY Daily News)
"It depends on whether or not you give him my plays, you know."
-- Steelers coach Mike Tomlin responding to ESPN reporter Bob Holtzman's question on how much extra time it takes to prepare for a Rex Ryan defense. Prior to the Steelers-Ravens game, Holtzman reported the Steelers might use a gadget play, which is the type of thing supposed to be kept off the record (The Huddle)
"[Sunday] I played a bit of a psychological game with the Jets. It's something that I need to explain. I thought that more important to the Jets than hearing another score of '24-21, they have a chance to win,' was that it was important that they have in their mind, 'you got beat 45 to 3. A large segment of the population believes that can happen to you again.'"
"[The Jets] are all watching [ESPN Sunday NFL Countdown before the game]. I wanted to further fuel and cement them in that bunker mentality of us against the world.
-- ESPN analyst Tom Jackson disagreeing with Bart Scott's assessment that no one believed in the Jets by explaining why he picked the Patriots to win
"As a defensive player, I certainly knew that they had a chance to win, and I thought that they certainly might win the game. But I knew when they saw 30-10 that I think they would be reminded of what most people were feeling. And I knew they needed to be a little angrier going on the field."
-- Jackson, lobbying for a full winning share from the Jets victory. He later attempted to clarify his comments (Shutdown Corner)
"How do you feel about being the second-most attractive safety on the team, yet they give you the commercials? Is it racist?"
-- Steelers safety Ryan Clark, shouting to teammate Troy Polamalu as a mass of media members surrounded Polamalu's locker (The Huddle)
"He's like a fine wine. He gets better with age. There's always talk about him getting old, but every year, he gets better and better."
-- Steelers nose tackle Casey Hampton marveling over the longevity of 36-year-old middle linebacker James Farrior (The Star-Ledger)
"It would be cool, but that's not a major focus of mine. I don't care if it was in Europe, as long as I win the Super Bowl."
-- Steelers right tackle Flozell Adams on the possibility of playing in the Super Bowl in Dallas, where he spent the first 12 seasons of his NFL career (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)
"It doesn't matter as long as it's not cold."
-- Auburn University defensive tackle and potential No. 1 overall pick Nick Fairley when asked where he wants to play in the NFL (WRKG)
"So Dallas is prepared for everything. Matter of fact, we have equipment already on the ground in case we get snow and ice all at the same time. So the equipment is already there and ready to rock and roll. Just to go and put the dirt on the roads, the salt on the roads just to de-ice everything."
-- ESPN personality Emmitt Smith, explaining the intricacies of taking ice off the roads in advance of Super Bowl XLV in Dallas (YouTube)
"With the tempo of those practices, I think that would be pretty minimal. We'll scout the golfing."
-- Patriots coach Bill Belichick on whether he'll be able to scout players on other teams while he is coaching Pro Bowl practices (The Patriot Ledger)
"You know I heard a lot of different nicknames. I heard ['The Avalanche']. You know I heard 'White Rhino.' I heard ... Chuck Norris, ah heck, I've heard it all. I kind of look down on that one just because you look at him as an overachiever. I didn't enjoy that one too much. I really haven't looked into. Whatever people want to think of me as I'll just let of them think it as that way. You know I just never got into nicknames much."
-- Browns running back Peyton Hillis on The Dan Patrick Show trying to recall the best nickname given to him (Sports Radio Interviews)
"Not even Rex [Ryan] would be interested in that foot."
-- NFL Network analyst Rich Eisen after seeing colleague Deion Sanders' deformed surgically repaired toe (YouTube)
"Being from Texas and having to be in New York for six months out of the year can be hard because he has kids and he's missing important time with them. He's opting not to play right now, but that might change [and] it might not. I told him don't 'Brett Favre' us. You got to be all in and fully dedicated to play. Do I need him? I need him, but I don't want him to play if his heart's not in it."
-- Yankees general manager Brian Cashman recounting a conversation he had with indecisive potential retiree Andy Pettitte in which he invoked the name of another indecisive retiree (FanNation)
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23 comments, Last at 24 Jan 2011, 4:09pm by Kevin from Philly