HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on TE-John Carlson) * *
"He's a real hard worker and he's a very humble kid who works very well within this system. He's a joy to be around. Every day for him, it's about being the best he can be and trying to help this team win. I think if he continues that way, and all indications are that he will, that he has a chance to really be something special. He's going to get to watch up close and personal one of the best in the business this week, and hopefully he can learn something."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on Carlson being a team player)
"That's one of the things that attracted us to John in the first place, besides his obvious talent on the field, is his character. And he hasn't disappointed. He exhibits that every single day. He's just a real quality person and certainly a good football player. We're lucky to have him on our team."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on besides in 2001, if he has faced the Colts as an assistant)
"I faced them one other time, Peyton's rookie year, the first game he started out in San Francisco. They jumped out on us 21-0. That was the only other time I've faced Peyton."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on how much more difficult it is for an NFC team to play an AFC team like the Colts with a Peyton Manning when you don't see them much)
"It's certainly more difficult because we don't have the familiarity with them. The more you're on the field against somebody, and not necessarily just watching them on film but on the field playing against them, you start to learn about them, and their pace and their rhythm and some of the ways they're trying to attack you that maybe aren't as obvious on film as they would be on the field. That's part of the issue. But the bigger issue, really, is just the talent level of that football team. It's a very talented football team. They're used to winning, they know how to win. It goes without saying that Peyton is one of the greatest of all-time."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on a difference in preparation for a team out of conference)
"It just forces you to dig a little deeper in your preparation as a coach, watch more film, maybe talk to people around the league that have faced them more than you have. And then it forces your players to do the same. They have to spend extra time studying film, trying to learn the opponent and find any tips that they maybe can find. It just forces you to work a little bit harder, but that's okay. It's also a great challenge, and these players love a great challenge."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on the season thus far)
"We didn't expect to be sitting here 1-2. We started out fast with a win over St. Louis. You mention injuries, we have a ton of them, but we're not going to use those as excuses. We're playing a little short-handed, but we have a lot of guys that have filled in and done a good job. We've just come up short the last two games, but the thing I'm real proud about is the effort and the attitude and the work ethic of the men that played for us. It's been, I think maybe the word inspiring is to overstate it—it's been what I expect—but it's also been impressive because they've been consistent with it."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on QB-Seneca Wallace)
"Seneca's played a lot in this league, and he's a good player and he can keep the play alive for a long time because of his mobility. He has an underappreciated arm, I think, but for him it's just a matter of playing and guys around him making plays. I'm a Seneca Wallace fan. I like him. I think he's a tough guy. I think that our players really respect him."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on RB-Edgerrin James)
"If you look at his production on the field, it's not great yet, but it's coming. But his production in the locker room is invaluable. I mean, the guy is a real leader. My dad, when we were getting ready to sign him, said, 'You'll love this guy.' He told me he was one of his favorite players of all-time—and people of all-time—that he's coached. He doesn't disappoint. He rallies guys. He's a real pro. He's a gym rat. He's here all the time working trying to get better. The players have great respect for him. They listen to him, and he's always kind of imparting wisdom. I really like the guy. I'm glad that he's on our team, and it's been fun to get to know him. The guys on the team just love him. Not just the team, everyone. You go ask our equipment guys about him, and immediately they just loved him. It's great. What a guy, what a great guy."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on getting James into the Hall of Fame and into the top 10 all-time rushers)
"I asked Edge how many yards away he was from Jim Brown, and I think he's in striking distance (148 yards). The way we've been rotating our backs, and we're using them all, if he gets hot, who know what will happen. I was thinking today, wouldn't it be fitting to kind of break into the top 10 in a place where he had so much success? I think for the fans, it would kind of be a neat deal. I'm looking beyond the fact that it would mean we were running the ball well, I'm just saying what a neat deal for him, and for those fans because they supported him for so long."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on if he would think about starting James)
"I hadn't thought about it until you just mentioned it, but right when you were saying it I was thinking about it. I don't think that's something that we would do. And knowing Edge, I don't think that's something he would want. I think he would reject that. I just think he would. He's too much of a team guy, he really is."
HEAD COACH JIM MORA (on how good MLB-Lofa Tatupu is)
"He's a very good player, and he'll be back this week. He's really missed the last two weeks. We're excited to have him back. As much as a good player he is on the field, he's a tremendous leader, very smart, studies the game. He's one of those guys that just seems to get it, seems to know how to play, can see the big picture. He does everything well. There's not a weakness to his game. And if you looked at him, you'd probably say, 'How's he get it done?' He's a little bit undersized, and his timed 40-speed isn't great, but he's smart, he's quick, he's crafty, and he knows the game—a heck of a good player."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on his rookie season last year) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"Last year, obviously, we had a tough year. We had a lot of injuries and even with all those injuries we were in a lot of those games we didn't win. We didn't make the plays that we needed to make. For me, personally, it was good in that I got a lot of opportunities to play. I got a little more experience. By no means was it a perfect season. I felt good about it because I was able to make it through the whole year. I think I learned a lot, and I've got a long ways to go."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on his numbers looking even better this year based on the start he is having) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"Well, yes, but unfortunately, you can't just multiply things in the NFL, because injuries come into play and different things like that. Otherwise, after week one, I would have been really happy, on pace for 32 touchdowns. I don't think that is going to happen."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on the transition from college to the NFL) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"I think the thing that surprised me the most was how the length of the season affected me. Everyone that I talked to, my former teammates that made that jump, they all told me that as a rookie you kind of hit a wall, around week eight, nine or 10. I really didn't know what to expect. It was kind of one of those deals where up until week eight, I was kind of like, 'Wow, the season is almost half done,' and then I got to week eight and it was like, 'Wow, the season is only half done." Once I overcame that hurdle things started going a little better for me."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on if he's molded himself after any other TE's in the league) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"Absolutely, every time I watch film, I try to study the other tight ends and look at the things that they do well, and how they accomplish those things. Obviously, Dallas Clark has done great things in the NFL. He is a tremendous receiver and a good blocker, really a great player. There are other guys around the league. (Dallas Cowboys' TE) Jason Witten is a guy that I really try to learn from. Really, every team has a tight end that I can pick something up from."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on the team responding to some tough losses early this season) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"We have had some tough losses. This past week was hard to swallow. All you can do is learn from it, evaluate it, look at the things you did wrong and correct it. I think that's what we're doing. I felt like we had a good practice today, and we're moving on to this week and the Colts."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on the differences between former head coach Mike Holmgren and current head coach Jim Mora) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"I think the biggest difference is that Coach Holmgren is an offensive-minded coach, obviously, and Coach Mora is a defensive-minded coach. They have a little bit of a different approach to practice. The offense probably runs to the defensive field a little more now, but other than that, there isn't a whole lot different. They aren't a whole lot different."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on the green uniforms the team wore last week) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"I didn't think we were going to be able to hide anything, because we stood out like we were radioactive out there. The green was pretty bright. It was fun to have a little change up, but I'm glad that's not going to be a permanent thing."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on his first reaction to the jerseys) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"It was kind of like, 'Is this for real? We're going to wear those for a game?' But, I mean, who am I to judge? This is my second year, I just do what I'm told."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on if playing for head coach Charlie Weis at Notre Dame helped him in his transition to the NFL) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"I think he did. His offense, which he brought from New England, has a lot of checks and reads and audibles and things like that. That's the kind of stuff you have to do in the NFL. I'm glad I got a little taste of that in college, so it wasn't completely new to me."
TE-JOHN CARLSON (on RB-Edgerrin James) Wednesday, September 30, 2009
"Well, he is a character, first and foremost. He's a pretty funny guy. Obviously, he has been around a long time, so he has a lot of respect in our locker room, and I think he is a great player."