JACKSONVILLE – Jalen Ramsey put it simply.
"I ain't never going to sit down," Ramsey said moments after the Jaguars' 20-16 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers Sunday. "I'm always going to bounce back."
Ramsey, the Jaguars' All-Pro cornerback, did just that in memorable fashion Sunday – and his effort was almost enough for a dramatic Jaguars victory.
Ramsey, who struggled and allowed at least one touchdown in a loss to the Indianapolis Colts last Sunday, responded on Sunday with perhaps the best game of his three-year career. He registered a team-high eight tackles and three passes defensed, and also made two of the most spectacular interceptions of his career.
This came on a day that began with a report by ESPN's Adam Schefter that the Jaguars likely will consider trading Ramsey in the offseason.
"It is what it is," Ramsey said of the report, adding that he didn't used the story as motivation. "I don't control that. All I control is what I put out there on the field. When the offseason comes, we'll have some conversations to have. It could be whatever … get a contract extension or something.
"Something's going to happen. We're going to wait until that time comes."
Ramsey said Jaguars Head Coach Doug Marrone spoke to him briefly about the report before the game.
"Coach Marrone came and hollered at me for a second, a quick second," Ramsey said. "I was really trying to focus on the game. I wasn't really trying to hear too much of it. It's cool, showing their support."
Ramsey said he walked off the field "pretty mad" following the loss, adding that he has been "pretty pissed off" during the Jaguars' current six-game losing streak.
"I've been battling with my emotions, trying to hold them in," Ramsey said, adding of frustration within the team: "You need a little frustration. If people are content with losing and things not going right, then that's not the type of guys you want on the team and that's not the type of team environment you want to have.
"You need people a little pissed off when they come into the building, when they come to the facility, when it's time to practice, when it's time to play. You need people a little pissed off and with a chip on their shoulder."
Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith had one thought when nickelback D.J. Hayden intercepted Roethlisberger in the middle of the end zone on 2nd-and-goal from the Jaguars 2 with :22 remaining and the Jaguars leading 16-13. "Game over," Smith said. "We thought the game was over." Instead, Hayden was called for a facemask penalty on Steelers wide receiver Ryan Switzer before the pass was thrown. "He pushed me, so I grabbed him, and it was a long play, so I was just out there trying to make a play," Hayden said. "If I'd never have grabbed his helmet, we probably would have won the game." Roethlisberger's game-winning one-yard touchdown run with :03 remaining came two plays after Hayden's negated interception.
The Jaguars were penalized 11 times for 111 yards Sunday, drawing three unnecessary roughness and a roughing-the-passer penalty. The roughing the passer penalty was called against defensive end Calais Campbell in the third quarter, negating an interception by linebacker Myles Jack. Campbell was called for landing on Roethlisberger with his full body weight after Roethlisberger released the pass. "I try to play football the only way I know how to," Campbell said. "I guess I stayed there too long on him, but I can't control whether they're going to throw a flag or not. I try my hardest to play the game the right way within the rules. Sometimes they're going to call you for a penalty."
Smith: "Everyone hurts, you know what I mean? It's not that this one hurts because … every one of them hurts. This one was tough. Just like every 'L' that you take in life, this one was tough."
Bortles: "It's tough anytime you lose, and none of them are fun, but it's tough. There are six games left, so we have to line up and go play six games."
Hayden: "We have to keep fighting and keep swinging. I mean, stuff happens all the time but at this point in time we just need to keep swinging and keep fighting and that's all we can do."
Campbell: "This is as tough as it gets. There are going to be some games you definitely lose and some you'll definitely win. But when it comes down to that last play, and you're on the losing side of it, those hurt – especially in a situation where we're a desperate team in need of a win. It hurts even that much more."
Campbell: "We just have to look forward to next week and try to get back in the win column. There's still a lot of life left. I don't know if 9-7 will get us where we want to go. It might. It might not. We might need some help. It is what it is, but us getting there is the goal. If we do, I can live with that. These guys in the locker room believe. Nobody's quitting and nobody's giving up."
Marrone: "I go back to the same thing. I've said this before: we're professionals. We have to understand that."