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Indianapolis Colts

Tony Dungy Quotes - 1/12/04

TONY DUNGY 1/12/04 (opening comments) “Looking at the game, I thought we played with a lot of energy, a lot of emotion. We played very well offensively.



(opening comments)

"Looking at the game, I thought we played with a lot of energy, a lot of emotion. We played very well offensively. Defensively, and special teams-wise, it wasn't really one of our better games. We're going to have to get those two areas cranked up if we want to win this coming week, but we did just enough to win. We made some plays when we had to. The one thing that our defense did do, Kansas City has been the best team in the NFL in the red zone and were scoring touchdowns at a 78 percent clip, and we did hold them down there twice (in the red zone). They missed a field goal and had to settle for a field goal and that was really the difference in the game. That was a positive to come out of it, but we have to tackle better. Hopefully, we can learn from that and grow from that. Hopefully, our offense continues to play as hot as they have been."

(on giving up 6.1 yards-per-carry in the playoffs)

"It's not just the stat, but the way we're giving them up. We've just got to be in the right gaps, do the right things. We've got to tackle a little bit better. We've probably been four or five weeks now with no pads in practice. I think that showed a little bit yesterday. I don't really want to go back to the pads because I think we need to be fresh, but we've got to tackle better than we did."

(on the Colts prolific offense)

"They're just really focused in. Our coaching staff has done a great job of game planning and going after the weaknesses in the other defenses we've played. We've been very sharp. We've had very few penalties. We've had very few missed assignments. We dropped a couple balls yesterday, but we haven't had the drops. Other than the three fumbles we had in the Denver game, we just haven't had very many mistakes. We're good enough, talent-wise, that when we're not making mistakes, we're tough to defend."

(on playing New England, and QB-Peyton Manning's recent production on the road)

"We're going to have to go in there and play well. We're playing a team that's the hottest team in football. They are very well-coached and they are very talented. They're playing at home and they're playing with a lot of confidence. We've played some teams like that in the past and done well enough. We've won our share of road games, and now we have to go in and win one more with the stakes being very high. It will definitely help our chances if he (Peyton Manning) continues to play as he has."

(on the production from RB-Edgerrin James)

"He really has (played well). We've had tremendous contributions from a lot of players on offense and our offensive line has been very solid. Edgerrin, as well as Peyton (Manning) has played, has been the key, getting the running game going early in the game, making people have to defend the run and between trying to find a way to double Marvin Harrison and a way to play the run, that has allowed other receivers to have good days. We need everybody playing well and contributing. Peyton and Edgerrin are, obviously, critical. It's been a group effort."

(on if he remembers two performances in the playoffs like QB-Peyton Manning has put together)

"It's hard to really think of two performances like this back-to-back. I thought Denver was just phenomenal because of their defense. Kansas City yesterday, going on the road and the elements that you have to deal with there, with the wind and the noise, to put two together like that in the playoffs in high-pressure situations, I'd have to think a long ways."

(on the Colts ability to play in hostile environments on the road)

"We're just a veteran group and they don't worry about going on the road. They don't look at it as a big obstacle. We know how to handle noise. Most of our communication is done visually, and we don't get a lot of penalties. It's just being a veteran group and being in the system for quite a while."

(on P-Hunter Smith not having to punt in two games)

"Hunter is doing a great job holding, and if we can keep on doing that, we'll be in great shape, even if we have to punt."

(on the Patriots)

"They do a great job coaching. They have a wide-open offense. They do a lot of different things. They move people around defensively. I was very impressed with them the last time we went up against them. Our big thing is to look at their players on tape, see what they do and try to attack that. I think our guys will be ready."

(on New England's defense)

"They do some things that I really like and they use their personnel really well. They are very well-coached (on defense), but they're well-coached on offense and special teams as well, and I think that's what makes them good.

(on undervalued defensive players like Patriots LB-Tedy Bruschi)

"I remember him coming out of school and was a playmaker there. Guys that make plays, generally make plays at the next level. They took Dan Klecko this year, the same type of guy. They have had success with those type of guys. We have had success with those type of guys. As a defensive coach, you do look for guys that can make plays."

(on if the game will come down to K's-Mike Vanderjagt and Adam Vinatieri)

"I wouldn't be surprised if the game comes down to a field goal one way or the other. Vinateri has been very clutch for them in their playoff run. Mike is kicking very well for us and he has made a ton of big kicks, and both of them know how to kick in adverse weather conditions. I think they'll continue to do what they do."

(on if the Colts have accomplished their set goals for the season)

"We had a mission after we got off the field in Houston. We knew we had won the division, we knew we had one home game (in the playoffs), but our mission at that point was to get to the Super Bowl and win it. That's what we're focused on. We've had two games that were very emotional and we were able to win them, but we're still just halfway through the mission and we're looking ahead"

(on playing in the cold)

"The cold is really mental. Heat can be physiological, you're body can shut down if you get overheated, you start to cramp up, but cold is just knowing that you can function in it. Most of our guys know that they can function in it. As cold as the Tennessee-New England game was, it was played really well and there weren't a whole lot of miscues. I would expect this game to be the same way."

(on QB-Peyton Manning's record against New England)

"I think they play good defense and they give most teams trouble. You have to find a way to attack them. Last game, we attacked them better as the game went on. Hopefully, that will be something we can build on. They play good defense and there is no secrets to it. They have good players. They are well-coached. Romeo Crennel does a tremendous job. Bill Belichick gets a lot of the credit, and I'm sure it's like here and the places I've been, you have some input, but those coordinators, they run the show."

(on QB-Tom Brady)

"I think he's the guy that rises to the occasion and he seems to make that play that they need when you have to have it. He's got the ability to play his game in the pressure situation. That's what I've seen from him. When it's big-time in the fourth quarter, he's able to make throws and his team believes in him. That, to me, is what separates guys. If you can make the plays in the fourth quarter of big games, if you can make the same throws that you make the first throw of the season, then that's when you're good. "

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