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Jaguars Postgame: Buccaneers vs. Jaguars - Sunday, December 1, 2019



Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019

(Opening statement) "Obviously, it's disappointing. We start the game off and we get the stop for the defense and force them out of field goal range and wind up getting a punt. Obviously, the three turnovers, two out of the three were in scoring position, you know, to score and go up. That always hurts when you have that opportunity. Every turnover hurts. Before you know it, it's 22-0, so we go in there, we play the first half and, just to tell you, I wanted to get a spark. It was kind of dead and I wanted to get things going and made the switch at quarterback. I told Nick [Foles] coming in, as soon as I got in there at halftime, I spoke to him. We got everything ready for Gardner [Minshew II]. I haven't spoken to either quarterback afterwards. I know I'm going to get a lot of questions on it, on what's going to happen, which is fine. I'm going to tell you the answer already. I haven't spoken to them, and I always believe in doing things the right way. I've got to talk to them first. It's obviously emotional right now and we're really disappointed, so we'll wait, and I'll talk to them before any announcement comes out. I just think it's the right thing to do. I know it might not feel like the right way for the fans and everyone, but I've got to continue to do things the right way. I've got to continue to lead. I've got to continue to find a way to go. I thought we had a good opportunity to get the game within one score. The ball was on the one-yard line and those are the times where you've got to be able to score and we weren't able to do that and wound up turning the ball over there. It was an opportunity to get us back within one score, which would have been great to see what would have happened, but we didn't give ourselves the opportunity. It sounds like these past couple of weeks, we haven't given ourselves the opportunity to win a football game. When I look at that, it's easy to look at one person and if one person were switched, but right now, none of us are doing a good enough job, but at the end of the day, starting with me, the coaches, I'm sure there are some good plays here and there, but consistently, we've got to do a better job."

(On why Nick Foles is having difficulty moving the offense downfield compared to Gardner Minshew II) "A little bit of mobility, I think that helps [Gardner Minshew II]. Up front, they got after us a little bit, knocked us back, squeezed the pocket, so from that standpoint, he can extend plays a little bit more. I think it changes a little bit, but not much in this game coverage-wise. The lead was 22 and they were still coming after us. That's not the case. We were able to make some plays. DJ [Chark Jr.] made the play down the sideline, and we missed some plays, too. We had a drop for a slant, but we were able to make some plays where before that we weren't able to make some plays and weren't able to protect [Nick Foles] well enough. The first one, he gets hit as he was releasing the ball on the backside. The second one, the right tackle gets beat and it's a strip-sack. The third one, in my opinion, he should have been able to hold onto because he saw the guy coming on the back. That's how I saw those three turnovers."

(On how close he was to switching quarterbacks in the first half) "It would have been difficult. I was just trying to get a score, knowing that we were going to get the ball back, so I really was just focusing on trying to get a score to get this game going, thinking if we score here before the half and get the ball to start the second half and score again, we can get ourselves back in this game. That's what my mind was thinking at that point."

(On if he felt Gardner Minshew II provided that spark he was looking for) "I think we had an opportunity. I'm not going to sit here and say that we didn't, so I would say yes to that."

(On if it was a difficult or easy decision to switch quarterbacks) "I just thought it was going to give us the best chance to win. I really did. I don't think any decision like that is easy. It's very painful because you know it's not just one person. I look at it as if I ever have to bench someone or pull someone or whatever words we want to [use], it's a direct reflection on me in not having guys ready or whatever it may be. It's not easy, those are the decisions that have to be made."

(On what he's seen from Gardner Minshew II in the weeks he's served as backup) "We've been working with him extra. We liked him, like I said before, so we got him extra work after practice working on the things that he needs to improve on. We didn't want to just stop his development, and a lot of times that happens when you're not playing, so we tried to do the extra things with him to keep him going and then our focus was on getting Nick [Foles] comfortable and getting him ready to play and win games."

(On whether this is a matter of Nick Foles being rusty) "I'm not doing a good enough job. When you look at what we're doing out there, it's not good enough. Like I said before, it's tough. You try to do the best job you can, but at the end of the day, when you're pulling quarterbacks and pulling other players, there's no doubt it's a direct reflection on me, that I'm not doing a good enough job for those guys. We've got to do a better job, all of us, myself, coaches. The team is fighting. You're sitting up here going, 'Shit, they are fighting their asses off.' I know they're pros and all that other stuff, but like I said before, we're going to find a way and get a good taste in our mouth and look to see what we've got to do differently, look to see if there's something we can build on, look to see if there's something that can get us over the top and then go out and compete our asses off. That's all you can do."

(On the performance of the second-string players that started on defense today) "I think they're fighting their asses off. We had three turnovers, which was tough, obviously, two in our zone, one sack-fumble for a touchdown, but they still drove the field. I thought we kind of got after them a little bit. I thought we had pressure early on. I think that we lost our gap control on that one run, but those guys go in there and it's an opportunity to show what they have. They are fighting their asses off. There's not much more you can ask of those guys. I think we did make some plays on defense. You are always going to look back and want to make some more, but I thought for the most part, I'm happy to see those guys get in there and get an opportunity and the way they go about themselves, it's just unfortunate that I can't pull them all home for a victory so they can truly celebrate it."

(On if the reps Gardner Minshew II had in the first two months are why he's able to step in and play today) "Yeah. That's how that story was. I really wasn't that comfortable until after the Kansas City game when he started going in there and playing. I think all those things are a great experience. He's guy that his whole entire life he took advantage of it, no different than Nick [Foles], no different than a lot of these players. The more experience that you have, it can help you as long as you use it in a positive way, which he has."



Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019

(On what halftime was like and what he did to prepare for the second half) "I didn't just start preparing in that halftime, though. I've been preparing for it for a long time. Coach Marrone came in and told me and Nick [Foles] the situation. We both talked about it and agreed [that] we're going to do everything we can to get us back in the game."

(On how he got ready to play) "You just try to get loose, try to take completions early, get in the flow of the game. I thought we did a decent job of that."

(On if he has any idea how the quarterback situation will play out) "No."

(On if he is the quarterback now) "Me and Nick are both going to be quarterbacks for this team. We're going to do everything we can to lead it and help us win games."

(On how it made him feel to receive support from the fans) "Yeah, I appreciate it. One thing I didn't appreciate was a lot of the booing today. You have guys who put their hearts out there every play, every game. Nobody deserves that. I hated how that was, but I'm also super appreciative of the support I get from the fans."

(On what the conversation with Nick Foles was like after the game) "It was a lot of love. We're all in this together. When he's out on the field, I'm there with him. When I'm out on the field, he's there with me. We're all battling this together; we're all trying to figure out what we have to do to get this thing turned around."

(On what he's done during practice to stay prepared) "They did an extra 7-on-7 period for me, which was awesome. They didn't have to do that. I'm super appreciative of the reps they've been giving me to help keep me ready and be as ready as possible."

(On how valuable the extra reps in practice have been) "Absolutely, you don't get a ton of live reps as the number two, so to get any [extra reps] is a huge thing. I'm super appreciative."

(On how long he's been getting extra reps in practice) "Since I moved back to the number two, it's been a thing."

(On what they need to do next Sunday to get a win) "I think the biggest thing is we've just got to start fast. You look back throughout the year, the games we win, the games we get out and get some momentum going, let our pass rushers eat, let our [defensive backs] get some easy picks and also let Leonard [Fournette] tote that rock, and that's when we're at our best, when we do those things."

(On how tough it is to help the team and empathize with Nick Foles' situation) "Oh, it's tough. I've been in the same situation; I've been booed off the field at ECU and it's not a place anybody should have to be in. There's so much love in that room, we all support each other and to see that was absolutely brutal. I hate that for him. In the same vein, all he wants is to win, all I want is to win and whoever's out there, [that] is what we're going to try to do."



Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019

(On the energy of the team when Gardner Minshew came in the game) "Gardner gave us a spark, along with the crowd, too, cheering us on out there on the field. During halftime, [Leonard] Fournette gave us an enthusiastic speech that fired up the team before we got back out there on the field. We knew when we got back on the field, we would have to fight to keep the game up because we were losing in the first half, 25 – 0. We had to change the game plan up a little bit to get our game on and we tried our best."

(On the halftime speech in the locker room) "There is always a halftime speech in the NFL, but when Fournette gives one, it made it more special. The team really felt the words that were coming out his mouth and understood that we are a talented team and that we need to go out there and be better. The speech was a very good one and it gave us the energy we needed, even though we came out with a loss. After this loss, we just to have to keep going harder and stay motivated."

(On the last four games) "I'm very surprised because with the people in this room, we should be able to beat anybody. In the last couple of games, we really haven't been able to put ourselves in the win column in the fourth quarter and we just have to do better and play better. The guys are going to continue to fight… but at the end of the day, we will see what happens."

(On channeling the teams frustration) "We just have to lock in until we get an advantage over our opportunity. Frustration is a part of the game. It's an emotional game and when things don't go right, we are going to have some frustration. But we have to use that to prepare us to be the best that we can and also lock in so that way, at the end of the day, we will be able to come out with a win as a team."



Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019

(On the feeling after the game) "We lost so I'm not feeling too good. (Injury wise) I'm good. It's football, things like that happen. You got to be a tough guy in this league, and I got up pretty good and felt pretty good."

(On the defense gaining energy to start the second half) "That was our emphasis this week: to start the half strong because the last few weeks we haven't. We made a big emphasis to stop the run, force them to throw the ball and we were doing that and getting lots of three and outs. We try to put the offense in good situations but need to capitalize off more fumbles that we can cause. We just got to up that and we'll be good."

(On if the defense felt a spark from the switch at quarterback) "Quarterback is the quarterback. I'm just trying to win the game. Coach put Gardner [Minshew II] in and that's my classmate, my fellow rookie. I'm always going to support him and support Nick [Foles] as well. So, I'll defend anybody and I guess it's Gardner's turn. Got excited to see him out there and make plays and we'll see how that turns out."

(On getting the rookie record) "It doesn't mean anything, especially not today. It's good that I accomplished it, but that wasn't my end goal. I'm just trying to win the game."

(On satisfaction of living up to high draft pick) "My mindset is not living up to their satisfaction. It's living up to mine. I feel like I can go week in and week out where nobody can cover me, block me and try to have that mindset every week. I'm going to continue that throughout the rest of my career and try to get better for myself and my teammates."

(On if he's earned more snaps as an every down player) "Coaches put me in certain situations, and I can't control when I'm out of the game. Once I'm in there, I just try to make as big of an impact as I can and hopefully get more reps. I just know when I'm in there, I have to make my opportunities count."

(On what he saw out of guys filling in for injured players during the game) "Playmaking skills. [Donald] Payne came in making a lot of plays and getting us into the right situations, but it's football and everybody will make mistakes. He took that role pretty seriously, and I appreciate him for that. That goes for Andrew [Wingard] as well, came in and made a lot of big plays. Hopefully we can see that grow."



Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019

(On the tough day) "It's not easy. This is not an easy game and it's a tough situation, but I'll continue to put one foot in front of the other and keep moving. It's a trial and the trials keep coming. Again, it's not easy but I know where my heart and faith is and where I'm going to lean on in this time like I always do during the good and bad. You never want to go through it. It's difficult, but I will look at the bright things and continue to keep my head held high. Continue to keep moving forward."

(On hearing the boos from the fans) "Yeah, it's a tough part of the game. It'll test you when you're hearing that and ultimately you want what's best for your team and to keep moving forward. Of course, there were some mistakes made and that's just part of it. I understand this game, I understand that part of this game. I've been a part of it, but I've also been a part of turning things around. It's not easy, it's really difficult. I'm going to choose the route of continuing to stay positive and continue to believe in the guys in this locker room moving forward because ultimately we are in a trial. We have been throughout the course of the season. It's been up and down and all over the place and that's ultimately, if you can approach it the right way, that's how you can build something. Once again, never easy. This isn't easy. We're blessed to be in this position, and we have to be able to handle it and handle it in a way that can impact people because I know everyone is going to be looking at us to point fingers and know who to blame but we're all to blame. We put ourselves out there. I made mistakes and I'll look at those and look to improve because you never want to put your team in harm's way which unfortunately I did today. I'll keep working to improve to become a better player and a better person."

(On the interception) "Unfortunately, it was when I threw it at Dede [Westbrook] and right when I was releasing it, I got hit in the side that redirected the ball a little bit. Part of the game but I've got to move on and keep moving. You're going to get bumped when you're throwing."

(On turning frustration into a win) "If I had the quick answer, everyone would be doing it. I think the big thing is to deal with the emotions today. It's an emotional game, we put a lot of time and effort into it, but it helps when you spend time with your family and get away from this because it is emotional. You've got family, friends watching you, playing for a city. You deal with those emotions first, come back tomorrow and look where you need to improve, the good, the bad, the ugly. You address it and then put those emotions to the side and come back every single day and give it your best. You have to be critical of yourself. That's the only way to improve. You can't let that criticism defeat you. This is a tougher test but ultimately I'm going to keep my head high and keep believing and keep improving."

(On the concern of the mood in the locker room) "We're going to have to come together as a team to make sure it doesn't happen. To do that, you have to be open and honest and talk with one another. It's frustrating, you go out there and you want to win and we weren't able to do that so frustrations run high so you deal with the emotions in the 24 hours after the game, good or bad, you've got to deal with them. It's not easy but you move forward, you put it behind you. You look to improve because if someone asked me about a game I played in high school and I threw two or three interceptions, I probably wouldn't even remember it. It's behind me. No one ever talks about it and that's sort of how it is. We're in the moment, we're going to learn from it, move forward. I'm going to learn from it and move forward. It's not the first time I've struggled like that, but I know I'm never going to give up and I'm going to keep moving and that's the toughest part, but I know that's what's deep down in my heart."

(On if he's still the quarterback of the team) "Ultimately, with what happened today, Coach Marrone has said he'll decide something and knows how this goes. I know how I feel in this locker room and how I feel playing quarterback but ultimately that's his decision, but I know that whenever I am out there, I'm going to give it everything I have for my teammates every single day."



Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019

(On delivering a message at halftime) "Most definitely. This message was to keep fighting and keep going. I have never been a quitter a day in my life, that's No. 1 and just encourage those guys to keep fighting, keep going and try to give the team a spark. We came out and fought a little bit."

(On the effect of the energy when QB Gardner Minshew II is out there) "Our job is to win. So, no matter who is out there, we just have to win."

(On the frustration in the locker room and how they deal with it moving forward) "We've got to come and take it one day at a time. We're going to try to push the restart button. We're going to come in tomorrow, watch the film, learn from our mistakes and try to move forward from it."

(On the fourth down that resulted in an interception and why it wasn't working) "Because it didn't work. I've got nothing else to say about that."

(On whether he felt like they were going to come back in the second half) "Yeah, but it happens."