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Do defenses really wear out over the course of a game? Do defenses benefit from long drives that give them more time to rest on the sideline? Guest columnist Ben Baldwin investigates.

30 Nov 2006

The Week in Quotes: November 30, 2006

compiled by Alex Carnevale


"He's one of the most dangerous guys in the league when he has the ball in his hands. You can't expect me to blow the guy up. I didn't make the tackle. Get over it."

-- Plaxico Burress, Giants wideout, on Pac-Man Jones' interception and return against him in Sunday's Titans-Giants showdown.

"I've not done that. I really don't think that's an issue. There's a bunch of plays [against the Titans] that were extremely well called and well dialed up. I'm involved in it and I certainly have my two cents both during the series and between the series, but I really don't think that's the issue."

-- Giants head coach Tom Coughlin, on whether or not he'll start play calling (Newsday)


"It hurts, man. Any loss hurts, but this particular one to a team we should have beat the s--- out of -- this one hurts more."

-- Giants running back Brandon Jacobs, on his team's loss to the Titans on Sunday.

"Because they suck. That's why."

-- Jacobs

"Chill out, Brandon, because if they suck, we suck."

-- Giants safety Gibril Wilson


"In 10 years in the league I haven't had a quarterback do that any time to me, so we definitely remember that and the guys in the locker room remember that."

-- Minnesota safety Darren Sharper, on Rex Grossman's trash talk in a game earlier this season. (ESPN.com)

"I probably said some things that I regret, but the whole game their DBs were talking to me, just really getting under my skin a little bit and probably more than I should have allowed it to."

-- Bears QB Rex Grossman

"Rex can talk whenever he wants. Anybody on the field can talk when they want and that's where you handle it, on the field. That's the problem with the NFL. Everybody always issues threats through the media. No one ever really does anything about it, so that's something I'm kind of tired of. I've been here nine years and everybody's always talking tough in the media, but there's never any fights. If you're going to talk tough, I mean, go fight somebody."

-- center Olin Kreutz


"Obviously, everybody knows we're not a big defense. I think I'm bigger than every last one of our defensive ends. I don't think that's good."

-- Eagles middle linebacker Jeremiah Trotter

"We played a lot of seven-men-in-the-box because obviously with Peyton Manning back there and those two wide receivers, you can't give up the big play. At the same time, you can't let them continue to gash you. No matter how many men you play in the box ... If you only have two in the box, you have to do a better job than what we did against the run."

-- Trotter

"I think it is everybody doing their job and being accurate with their assignments. I don't think the size factors in. We need to make sure we put the guys in the right position."

-- Eagles coach Andy Reid, on his defense's struggles this season.


"We've been here seven years, and nobody has missed the team plane. Whatever excuse he gave me, whether it was a good one or not, it doesn't cut it."

-- Andy Reid, on linebacker DT Brodrick Bunkley missing the team plane.

"That's always your objective with the number-one pick. It just hasn't gone in that direction yet. We need more production out of him when he is out there."

-- Reid, on Bunkley's lack of contribution this season.

"You know what? I don't know. If you'd asked me three or four weeks ago, I'd have said yes. But it seems like we're in the same position every week."

-- Trotter, on whether the defense can turn it around.

"I think each guy needs to start with themselves and make sure that they are doing the right thing. And then make sure schematically we are putting them in the right position to do that. But I believe it can be fixed, yeah."

-- Andy Reid (Philadelphia Inquirer)


"I wouldn't pay attention. My eyes, I would be up in the sky. You know, I would be sleeping in my locker. I wouldn't carry my playbook because I was just trying to get away from this building, you know, when Dick was here."

-- Chiefs running back Larry Johnson, on previous coach Dick Vermeil. (Kansas City Star)

"You know, when we go out, you know, we like to go out. You know, we like to hang out. We like to have fun. But then you got to worry about the guy around the corner with the gun. You got to worry about this girl on the block. You got to worry about, you know, your parents. You got to worry about your homeboys taking advantage of you."

-- LJ


"There's so much things you got to worry about being a young black athlete. And to be able to have a father like mine and have a coach like Herm, I was able to escape a lot of those realities and find myself in a new ray of light."

-- LJ

"I think so. I could relate to Herman. I couldn't do that with the other coaches I had because they had not done it. You know, they haven't put those pads or they haven't been in the situation as a young black athlete and know what we had to go through."

-- LJ, on whether or not Herman's ethnic background mattered in their relationship.

"First time I saw (Johnson), I said: 'Are you ready? Are you ready to touch the ball 30 times a game?' And he kind of looked up at me, and he probably thought, 'I haven't even met coach yet, and he's -- what, is he messin' with me?'"

-- Herman Edwards, on meeting LJ.


"You have to understand that the kind of person I've been and the kind of person I am, there should be no question in nobody's mind -- even though there will be -- about my ability on the football field. This is God-given talent."

-- Chargers linebacker Shawne Merriman (Contra Costa Times)

"I think I'll be a little bit anxious waiting for Sunday to get here, but Sunday I'll be fine, just getting out there, flying around, knocking some heads."

-- Merriman


"I'm sick of talking about the f---ing yardage. I look at the Colts who are right beside us (in run defense), and they're 10-1. I pick up the paper every week and read about the yardage we've given up. It is what it is. All right? We haven't done well. We actually fit well, the best we've ever played, and they still had 170 rushing on us."

-- Rams defensive coordinator Jim Haslett

"We're ninth (actually 10th) in the league in pass defense, we've given up four (actually five) touchdowns in the last three games. You don't write that stuff. We're fourth in the league in turnovers. We had two (actually three) turnovers this game. You don't write that stuff. You always write the negative stuff. Well, write some positive stuff once in a while. We're fighting as best as we can to stop the run, and we're going to keep working at it."

-- Haslett


"There has been an attack on my family ... the Raider family. For someone to do that is unconscionable. It's detestable and it's an outrage. But that's what has happened since I've been here. Tom has taken a lot of the brunt of that."

-- Art Shell, talking about people dissing tight ends coach Tom Walsh, who was recently demoted from his offensive coordinator position. (San Jose Mercury News)

"Starting back in February when we first got here, the character assassination started. When you start getting personal and you start getting into a man's personal life ... I sit back and I watch things happen, and then it gets to a point where you cross the line. That line has been crossed and I won't sit back and allow it to happen anymore."

-- Shell, on a source in the organization dissing Walsh in the media.

"I'm a fighter and I refuse to allow anybody to try to take away from what I'm trying to do here. I expect everybody in this organization to be on the same page with me. Right now, everybody's not."

-- Shell

"You call one of your cronies that's in the news media to make statements ... you know how the law finds your fingerprints, they can tell who you are? When you make statements with your voice and with your words, you can also tell who's making those statements because you know the people."

-- Shell


"I remember watching a thing on Joe DiMaggio where he said, 'If I can't hit .300, I'm out of here. Well, I'm the same way. I'm not done yet. I can still bang it. I'm not just going to be taking up a roster spot. I still have four years left of solid, quality ball. The good thing is my playbook will be the same wherever I go. Hopefully, it's here."

-- Patriots punter Josh Miller, 36, on his injury-plagued season.

"It stinks. I just can't get the ball out there (on the drop). I mean, every time I walked back to the sideline in the Green Bay game I was like, ‘I'm killing this team right now.' It's the most frustrating thing. I can't explain it. I mean, it's not the worst thing in the world. There are a lot worse things that can happen to you, but as far as frustration goes, it's up there, because this is what I do and I love it."

-- Miller

"What's really frustrating is that (my upcoming surgery) is like moving a little tiny thing out of the way and then I'm fine. It's a razor-sharp pain every time I extend my arm out or up. My little girl is 20 pounds, and I can't even pick her up. It's frustrating not being able to help the team out and kick the right way. I mean, there were spots where I knew I could hit a bomb and I just couldn't hit the candy out of a pinata. It was just awful."

-- Miller (Boston Herald)


"I'm probably better than he is. He made that move seven yards away from Urlacher and I don't know how he got around him, but bless him he did and got the first down."

-- Dan Koppen, Patriots center, on Tom Brady's skill as a runner. (Patriots.com)

"That's probably the hardest I've ever been hit in my life. I didn't see the guy coming. He hit me clean, hit me front side and I just kind of remember my head hitting the ground."

-- Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger, on Bart Scott's obliteration of him in the Steelers' loss to the Ravens on Sunday. (Associated Press)


"When you win a Super Bowl, you try to improve your team. The Steelers didn't do that."

-- Former Lions coach Steve Mariucci (The NFL Network)

"They said it took longer to get me propped up on the table than the actual surgery, so it went pretty good."

-- Rams OT Orlando Pace, on his season ending surgery. (St. Louis Post Dispatch)

"Totally ridiculous. It's unfair, not right that we'd be last on any list. I mean, we had 15 players who (were or became) Pro Bowlers on that team, and we dominated the playoffs all the way through. Oh, well."

-- former Raiders coach Tom Flores, on his '83 team being last on the list of the top NFL teams as done by NFL Films. (Sacramento Bee)

(By the way, the Raiders aren't actually last on the list. There have been 40 Super Bowl champions and the NFL Films list only includes the Top 20.)

"We hope it stands the test of time."

-- NFL Films president Steve Sabol on his list.

"These young guys don't know what they don't know. Their job is to play football and they should concentrate on playing football. They should let the guys who call the plays concentrate on calling the plays."

-- Browns head coach Romeo Crennel (NFL.com)

Send your favorites to quotes at football outsiders dot com.

Posted by: Alex Carnevale on 30 Nov 2006

40 comments, Last at 03 Dec 2006, 2:02am by Sid


by mactbone (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 4:38pm

Just remember that Olin Kreutz was the guy who broke Fred Miller's jaw at an FBI shooting range when they got into a fight. I also heard he had anger management issues in college.

by PhillyCWC (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 4:55pm

Coach Crennell, here's a philosophical conundrum for you: If you don't know something, how could you know that you don't know it? Know what I mean?

by Travis (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 5:03pm

“It hurts, man. Any loss hurts, but this particular one to a team we should have beat the s— out of — this one hurts more.�

Are there two expletives deleted or just one?

by Jimmy6 (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 5:07pm

#1 He also broke a teammate's jaw in college.

Darren Sharper is a whiner. Why would he go to the media with this? It's pretty lame. "I got punked at the end of the game and the guy we were trashtalking all game said bad words to us!"

by jdb (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 5:09pm

well, I guess when Olin Kreutz talked tough he went and fought Fred Miller. that idiotic move aside, I thought his comments made sense. shit talking in the media is usually dumb. What effect does it have after the kickoff?
Darren Sharper's comments are kind of silly. why can't qbs talk smack? it's probably not a good idea for their own health, but if they want to, they should go ahead. It actually makes me think more highly of Rex Grossman, that he's not afraid to mix it up a little bit, even if he is struggling. I think that if you're going to talk shit, you should do it on the field, during the game, face to face, instead of hiding behind the media.

by Pacifist Viking (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 5:17pm

Apparently, in a game against the Rams, Joe Kapp got under center, looked at the defense, and said, "F--- you, Rams!" before saying hut.

by Tom Kelso (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 5:25pm

That was the same game in which he KO'd Ram linebacker Jim Houston, if I remember the story correctly. Wonder if any of today's QB's could do that?

by Basilicus (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 5:45pm

Josh Miller is now one of my favorite football players.

by RecoveringPackerFan (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 5:48pm

Amazing that Shell was able to squeeze out that many words in a single day.

by bsr (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 5:57pm

They did an "America's Game" segment on the 2001 Pats before their series started. Anyone know what that was supposed to be since it obviously wasn't to be included in the top 20? Maybe they just didn't make the cut?

All in all though it was very nicely done. Even had some information in there that I hadn't seen before and I read everything I could after that season. Looking forward to the rest of them.

by NewsToTom (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 6:41pm

Re #3
I'm pretty sure just one, and the second --- was a pause between words.

Late possible addition:
"I don't know too much about Cutler, but obviously the pick he went in in the draft means a whole lot."
--Vince Young on his fellow rookie's impending first start (Tennesseean)

by MJK (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 6:53pm

"Look him up under So-Crates.

'True knowledge is knowing....that we know Nothing.'

Dude! He's talking about us!"

by Sophandros (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 7:07pm

On Kreutz: How are his actions NOT trash talking to the media.

And why don't people refer to him as a thug?

by joshreflection (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 7:10pm

re: #10

Yes that's what I figure. Obviously a great story, but you could make a legitimate case for them as the weakest Super Bowl champion ever.

Heck, after the game, Belichick himself shouted "I can't believe we won the f***ing Super Bowl with this team!"

by Wanker79 (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 7:15pm


I think I just found my next Loser League team name. LOL

by Zac (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 7:27pm

I agree about Josh Miller. "I just couldn't hit the candy out of the piñata" is hilariously awesome.

by Smeghead (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 7:30pm

"That’s probably the hardest I’ve ever been hit in my life." -Roethlisberger

I'm gonna go ahead and bet it's not.

by Brad (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 8:28pm

that granny has nothing on bart scott

by noah of the ark (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 8:30pm

You can obviously know that you don't know something. It is a very wise thing, when you are aware there are things you don't know. Crennel is basically talking about young players being arrogant and think they know it all when in fact, they do not.

Of course, that's not what Crennel said -it's just what he meant to say. What he said was "they don't know what they don't know." And that does sound a bit silly, doesn't it?

by Smeghead (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 8:41pm

19: Positively Rumsfeldian.

by mactbone (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 8:42pm

Re 13:
He's white, plays for Chicago (quick, how many guys have you heard of besides Grossman and Urlacher), he's a lineman and he's been to multple pro bowls. There were some articles about him last year after the Miller incident in the Chicago papers, but he's been on the team for nine years, is the best lineman on the team and took less money to stay in Chicago so they didn't go too hard on him. The papers made a bigger deal about the secrecy surrounding the incident - the Bears wouldn't say anything and Lovie didn't appear to do anything - so that's what the columnists got up in arms over.

by manning,e (not verified) :: Thu, 11/30/2006 - 11:54pm

i cant tell u how satisfying it was to have my ron mexico's panty raiders team come in second in the loser league this week....thank you kevin barlow

by will (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 1:23am

Re: #13
Kreutz: 6-2, 290
Miller: 6-7, 320
The sheer physics of such a fight are pretty damn impressive. Though he probably is a thug. Also, remember that Kreutz has 3 or 4 pro bowl selections under his belt, though whether that is relevant...

by Nev (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 11:08am

At least with Kreutz it's not just all bad chat, you know that if he has a problem he goes and settles it himself rather then talking around it all week. We could use some of that fire and anger in the Panthers offensive line right now!

by James C (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 11:23am

re Kreutz/Miller rumpus

The strange thing about the incident was that Miller was the one who apologised. Apparently they had been drinking and shooting guns (a classic combination) at an FBI firing range. It seems that there was a little friendly rough-housing that got out of hand. The most information I ever saw on it was that Miller hit Kreutz over the head with a board ( I dont know what kind of board it just said 'a board') and Olin just turned around and hit him once which broke his jaw. Apparently this was Miller going too far which would probably depend on the size, thickness and density of the board in question.

by Rich Conley (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 11:54am

This just in:

Larry Johnson is a racist.

by Worm (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 1:06pm

Really cool article on Olin Kreutz:


The guy is the definition of bad-ass.

by Marko (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 3:22pm

"Apparently they had been drinking and shooting guns (a classic combination) at an FBI firing range."

That's quite misleading. They were shooting guns at the range, and then, after they were finished, they were drinking (and eating, too) at a different location within the FBI complex. The FBI investigated thoroughly. If they had been drinking while shooting, certainly some FBI personnel would have been fired because alcohol is prohibited at the range. No one was fired.

by mactbone (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 3:57pm

Re 28:
Yeah, I'm sure we know all the facts... There was definitely some question about when they were drinking - some of the statements made by the O-Line were ambiguous and not all the same. I also recall a mention about going to a bar before they went shooting.

Re 26:
He might be, but I took those comments more as he doesn't respect non-football players. The question specifically asks him about the African-American angle and he turns it into a "played in the trenches" statement.

by Bobman (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 5:08pm

I'm kind of disappointed that there's no snarky green comment before the Mariucci quote near the end. What's he doing talking about the super bowl, when his last coaching efforts were so... un-super?

Now that Vanderjagt is out of football (for now) maybe he can get a job as Josh Miller's pinata. Probably a safe job for a few weeks until he recovers. That was mighty funny, Josh.

Hey, no quotes on TO wondering why Vandy was cut? Talk about a kiss of death. Like Bush giving Michael "heckuva jhob Brownie" Brown his full confidence a couple days before axing him. The more TO lobbies for some guy, the more likely Parcells is to have him publicly maimed.

Maybe next week.

by jgm (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 5:19pm

re #2: You obviously are one of those young guys.

by MFurtek (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 5:33pm

I'd agree with that sentiment.

I'm glad Costas brought up the issue to discuss on Inside the NFL after the segment just aired. I'm glad LJ was being honest... but it also did seem a bit borderline.

(Echoing PFT) If a white owner said, "I wanted to hire him because I felt more comfortable with a white coach"... he would get crucified by the media and NFL for being racist.

(Echoing PFT) What if Rex Grossman said in the future, "I didn't feel comfortable playing for Lovie Smith... I feel more comfortable playing for Nick Saban." Would he get a free pass?

The only thing I was really offended at was when it seemed like he was saying that only black people like to hang out and have fun with friends and go to clubs.

I think if I were Dick Vermeil I'd be a little upset though... Priest Holmes didn't have any problems relating to the head coach, only the player who was brooding on the bench and falling asleep in team meetings. The implication seems to be Vermeil didn't care about LJ because he doesn't understand black people.

When TO admitted the same thing everyone crucified him... when LJ says it... I haven't seen a lot of outrage.

by jgm (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 5:39pm

LJ is also one of those young guys.

by Andrew (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 5:55pm

Bunkley alledgly misseed the team flight because he was buying fried chicken for his teammates.

by PhillyCWC (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 6:31pm

Re: 31 - well, no, I'm neither young nor a guy. But I get what you are saying. My post was strictly tongue in cheek.

Re: 34 - Bunkley was definitely buying chicken for the other guys on the team, and got stuck in traffic on the way to the airport. Apparently this is some kind of Eagles rookie tradition with which I was previously unfamiliar (and wish I still was).

by Justin Zeth (not verified) :: Fri, 12/01/2006 - 9:48pm

The Roethlisberger quote clearly shows the therapy to make him stop seeing a Chrysler New Yorker every time a defender comes his way is finally starting to take.

by DrewTS (not verified) :: Sat, 12/02/2006 - 12:59am

I'm going to have to agree with Reid that size doesn't matter if you're in the right position. That's probably true in football too.

by Richard (not verified) :: Sat, 12/02/2006 - 6:41am

No Michael Irvin quote?

by Richard (not verified) :: Sat, 12/02/2006 - 6:44am

I mean, this is just a freaking gem (talking about Romo's speed):

"No, that's not the only way ... but it's certainly one way ... [maybe his] great, great, great, great Grandma pulled one of them studs up outta the barn [and said] 'come here for a second' ... back in the day ...(more sinister laughter)"

by Sid (not verified) :: Sun, 12/03/2006 - 2:02am

RE: 29

I think Vermeil did play football, though. What LJ said would not be acceptable coming from a white player.

RE: 30

TO said that after the drunk idiot was cut. He was questioning Parcells' decision. I don't think TO ever brought up Vanderchoke before he was released.