Crash & AJ

Crash & AJ

Crash and AJ, Weekday Mornings on 98ROCK


Tampa Bay Buccaneers End-Of-Season Press Conference Video & Transcript





(On if there is an update on WR Russell Gage Jr.)

“Yeah, he just has a concussion. He should be released later this afternoon. His neck is fine and right now he has all his extremities moving.”


(On what his message to the team was today)

“Similar to yesterday – more or less when we came back, offseason is voluntary. But at the same time, it builds camaraderie, it builds chemistry and it builds culture. So, when you have an offseason, everyone has their own personal training, but you’re not really back together at that point. Guys can come in and work out – again, it’s all voluntary – we’re not making anybody come in and do this. But, to start the chemistry and the culture and the camaraderie early… I played eight years for the same team and coordinator. I took the same notes every year, every day until it became second nature. You have to treat it like that and when we get to that point – and we need to get to that point – that’s when you become a team again and that’s when you have some success going forward. It all starts in the offseason about taking care of their bodies and coming back in the right frame of mind. We know we won’t have everybody, we understand that and with all the draft picks, injuries, free agency and so forth. You can’t afford everybody, so we’ll try to make the right decisions going forward. I thanked everybody for their efforts and when you come back here, we’ll see a different culture, different chemistry and camaraderie.”


(On if chemistry and camaraderie has been missing this season)

“No, we had a lot of it, but you can have more of it. You can always have more of it. It starts there, especially in the offseason – that’s all you can do, so it has to start there.”


(On if anyone stood out on film last night)

“We all came to play, but we didn’t all play. You lose a game like that and I won’t sit up here and laude people for having a good performance because that’s not really true. I thought [Chris] Godwin did some very good things that way. Ryan Jensen fought, he fought. Everybody else… I can’t sit there and say anybody had a breakout game that played well.”


(On his evaluation of WR Chris Godwin’s season after he returned from a knee injury)

“It was tough. It was a lot of grit and determination. I thought he played with a lot of heart the first half of the season. As he got healthier, you could see his talent coming back in, his quickness coming back in and his toughness coming back in. I thought as the season grew, he got better and better. He’s one of my Comeback Players of the Year. I thought he did a great job.”


(On if there has been a decision made to move on from Byron Leftwich as offensive coordinator)

“No, there hasn’t been any decision.”


(On his assessment of Leftwich)

“I don’t have any assessment. Right now, we are evaluating players. We meet as a coaching staff later in the week. I’ll meet with individual coaches as well as the staff, which we do every year, and we will make those assessments then.”


(On if he foresees any coaching staff changes)

“Like I said, I will meet with the staff at the end of the week, and we’ll talk about everything then. I don’t want to sit here and say we are talking about things when I haven’t even talked over things with my coaches. We do our yearly assessment just like we do with the players.”


(On the lack of production in the run game)

“I think anytime you are the worst in the league it’s a combination of everything. There is no one thing that you can point to, to say we weren’t good in the running game. We just weren’t good in the running game. We will look at the tape, we will re-evaluate everything and we will make those decisions going forward of why we had such a bad thing. We try to do that weekly, but we will do that yearly as a staff and we will go from there.”


(On how important it is for the team to have a good rushing attack going into next season)

“It’s important, but at the end of the day, you do what you do best. You want to score more points than the other team. Winning is first. If you get runs within the wins then you are very happy. If you are throwing the ball and you’re winning, you’re very happy. Let’s not overblow it – it’s a passing league right now, but you want to be able to run the ball more. If you get down, you have to throw. Or sometimes you just have to throw if they are crowding the box. It’s all relative. We want to be better, and we want to do better in the run game, but the ultimate thing is winning and whatever it takes for us to win, we’ve got to do that.”


(On his assessment of RB Leonard Fournette’s season, and if the team tried to ‘shelve’ him for the second half of the season in order to keep him fresh for the playoffs)

“Lenny started out the season tough. I thought Rachaad came on. We never thought about shelving him (Leonard) for the second half of the season so he could be ‘Playoff Lenny.’ I thought they were a good one-two punch. We tried to play the year out like that. Some games we had some success – moderate success, so to speak – and a lot of games we didn’t. We tried to have a one-two punch, but we never once thought about shelving him.”


(On the difficulty of planning for next season without knowing QB Tom Brady’s plan)

“We will have those decisions that we have to discuss. You want to have a bunch of plans, but they can all go to pot beforehand. We will meet with Tom, we will meet with everybody else, and we will meet with the brass to come up with a plan and see where we are. If that’s the case, hopefully it doesn’t have to come after free agency and everything else like that. You want to have plans going into it, so we will do our due diligence, meet with the parties involved and we will come up with a plan one way or the other.”


(On if there are certain positions that are priorities going into free agency)

“We haven’t met on them yet, but we will prioritize the guys that we really want to keep and guys that we are willing to wait and see going out there. I think every team is going to have the same problems, so we have to be prepared either way.”


(On if this offseason feels comparable to last offseason in terms of not being able to keep everyone due to salary cap restrictions )

“I don’t know if it was as difficult last year because we won and we were like 13-4, we still won the division, and it was a different team. This year we had a different team and next year is going to be a different team, as well. We will meet and talk about the direction we will go. We know changes need to be made and we will go accordingly.”


(On if he feels he connected to the offensive players as much as he hoped to)

“Most of them, yeah. You’ve still got to connect with a few more, but you try to take time out and talk to a lot of the guys, get to know them and get them to know you. I don’t think it’s a forced thing, but I thought we got along, I thought we had some chemistry and I think we have a good understanding of each other.”


(On if he wants to continue calling the defensive plays next season)

"We’ll always talk about it. I’ve never been all-encompassing – I have to make all the decisions, but we have guys capable of calling plays over there as well. We’ll talk about it as a staff and we’ll go through the dynamics of it and we’ll kind of go there. We’ll even let a few of them call some preseason games and see where we are. We’ll make the best decision going forward.”


(On specific areas he wants the team to grow going into next season)



(On how effective the four-man pass rush was this season)

"No, I don’t think it was great. I think we were similar the last three years in numbers – or at least within three or four, number-wise – but they all came from different guys. I think when your nose [tackle] is your leading sack guy, I don’t think the pass rush was good enough. We fell off some, we missed some – but they came from a multiple group of people. You want to be able to get there with four so you can play more coverage. I thought we got better from a pass defense standpoint in that aspect, but we can also rush the passer better.”


(On why he blitzed less this season than in the past)

"Injuries in the secondary and just coverage and matchups – then people up front. Having to double better receivers this year, with [Ja’Marr] Chase and all those guys. In the past, we could zero out a little bit more. Sometimes you have to change things up. I think we’re somewhere close in the sack vicinity. You get behind and closer games so you have to be a little bit more conservative, but there’s no one reason why we did it. It’s just a cat-and-mouse game.”


(On C Ryan Jensen’s performance on Monday night)

"I thought he handled it well. His juices were flowing when he came out. I thought it’d be better off to start Ryan than [Robert] Hainsey because if Hainsey got hurt and then Ryan got hurt right after, we’d be out of it. So we let Ryan go – he was feeling pretty good so we kind of let him ride it out. His adrenaline carried him. I’m not saying he was perfect but he was tough and he boosted morale and he brought guys together up there.”


(On if he might try offensive linemen at different positions next year)

"It’s too early to tell – it’s possible. But to see them do it during the season gives you some hope they can do some other things. We’ll play around with it in the spring as we meet on it as a staff.”


(On if he still views Luke Goedeke as a guard moving forward)

"He played guard but he was a tackle in college, so he can take some reps out there as a swing tackle or do some things. We’ll move some guys around.”


(On if he views Goedeke on the left side or right side)

"It’s too early right now. We’ll be open to anything right now, but it’s too early to tell. We haven’t met on it.”


(On if outside linebacker is going to be a position of need moving forward)

"If the situation becomes available, we’ll definitely need more sacks from that position. That’s one of our money positions where we count on sacks to come from – the majority of them, anyway. Hopefully Shaq [Barrett] comes back okay. In the third year, Joe [Tryon-Shoyinka] can be better at that. [Anthony] Nelson hopefully we can get back. Carl [Nassib] stepped in nicely. But we need more production from a sack standpoint out of that position.”


(On OLB Joe Tryon-Shoyinka)

"I think he can get a lot better. He fell off quite a few sacks, like you said. If he finished closing…he might have missed more sacks than he made. If he makes those, he’s fine. We’ve got to work on him finishing at the top of the rush, especially falling off the quarterback – I think he leaves his feet too early. We talked about this, he understands that. Going forward, we’ll try to get him better and get him to the next level from that standpoint. He’s still got all the talent in the world and we’re waiting for this guy to break out. When he does – if he does – he’s going to be a heck of a player.”


(On if Tryon-Shoyinka needs to understand the mental side of the pass rush)

"It’s more experience. You start your first year and you see a lot of different block combinations and guys [know] how to bait you and everything else like that. He has some learning games where he understands how he has to rush and how people are starting to attack him, and then chip blocks and everything else like that that he understood this year that he needs to see. Next year, hopefully, the experience of that will help him going forward.”


(On what he wishes he could change about this season)

"You want to close out the division earlier. You really want to do that. I thought we had some games that got away from us that we should have won earlier. We didn’t close them out. I thought we should have been mentally tougher in the first half of the season like we were in the second half of the season. You want to try and get better at that.”


(On the team’s attention to detail)

"You talk about consistency – when you know what to do and you do it nine out of 10 times and the tenth time, you don’t do it – what is that? That’s a lapse in judgment, that’s something that you don’t want to happen or you want to have happen. That comes with your everyday study. You have to do it enough where it’s second nature and you don’t have to think about it.”


(On if the team will ‘rebuild’ or ‘reload’ this offseason)

"You never want to rebuild – you’re always reloading, no matter if you have new guys or not. You want guys to come in and play and compete for you to win the division.”


(On QB Blaine Gabbert)

"Blaine is a heady player. He’s extremely smart. I think he helps out a great deal on both sides of the ball. He understands what the game is about. [He’s a] competitor. I love what he does for us in practice – getting us looks. I love how he helps Tom [Brady] out. [He’s a] tough guy. He’s one of my favorite players.”


(On if he felt he had the influence on the offense that he wanted to)

"I don’t think you can have as much influence as you want on an offense that’s been together for four years and that’s what they do. You make your talks and you have your meetings and your conversations and you try to help wherever you can from the defensive side of the ball. I try to help them make sure they’re seeing what they see and go on from there. You can’t chime in every play when the offense is on the field because that doesn’t allow them to try and do their job.”


(On defensive breakdowns)

"If you do it nine out of 10 times right, it’s not a coaching thing or a playing thing – that means you know what you’re doing but you just busted that play. It’s just football. A guy makes a play on you and you bust the play or you just miss something – it has nothing to do with coaching or studying, that’s just in the moment of the game you messed up that play. You’ve got to be more disciplined than that.”


(On if mental toughness prevents breakdowns)

"Most of the time, yes.”


(On if he expects senior advisor to the general manager Bruce Arians to be back in the same role next season)

"I don’t know – we haven’t talked yet. I don’t know what his future holds. Bruce can kind of do anything he wants to do right now. We’ll see going forward.”

Article Pic: Getty Images

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