Sept. 20, 2004
Brady Quinn – quarterback
On the offense versus Michigan State ..
Obviously we did some good things. I definitely thought I missed some things. You know, on offense I thought we missed a couple things. We really could have put more points on the board.
On Matt Shelton and Jeff Samardzija stepping up against Michigan State ..
Obviously when you have guys stepping up like that and making plays for us it gives the defenses more to worry about.
On Matt Shelton being the “go-to” guy ..
He’s got a great knack for getting open and his speed helps him with that. At the same time, he’s a smart player and he definitely sees where there’s open space and gets to it.
Carlyle Holiday – wide receiver/punt returner
On his teammates’ being aware of his aggressive nature when returning punts ..
Everybody knows it. I think from the first game that I was back there they knew that I was going to try and take advantage of every opportunity that I get. They just need to get me some running room so I can do what I can do.
On his impressions of Washington ..
They’re a fast defense. They fly around to the ball. They’re 0-2 but if you look at it on film it doesn’t seem like they should be 0-2. They are very aggressive and we have a big challenge ahead of us.
On the struggles of the special teams versus Michigan State ..
It was very disappointing because we spend so much time on special teams and for that to happen it just took a little bit out of the team. We’re going to come back strong this week. We know special teams is a big part of the game and it’s an area that can control the game.
Derek Curry – linebacker
On his interception against Michigan State ..
Yeah, it’s funny because the one thing about the game of football is that you always tell the coach that it never works out (in a game) like it does in practice. I actually got an interception on that (play) in practice and it worked out exactly the same. I knew he was a young quarterback so I got a chance to bait him a little bit. Coach put us in a great coverage and put me in a great position to make the interception.
On if a defensive unit is expected to score more in the modern era of football ..
Absolutely. It’s big anytime a defense scores or sets up a score or gives the offense great field position to score. It’s definitely our priority. One of the main things we focus on is setting up a score or getting ourselves in the endzone.
Dan Stevenson – guard
On if he is always aware which running back is in the game ..
I like to try and know who’s in my huddle at all times. There are many times that you don’t even realize who’s back there when things start rolling. Like against Michigan, when Darius first came in, I didn’t even realize he was in. Then I run down the field to try and pick up the running back and I realized it was Darius and things just kind of went from there.
On if he blocks differently based on which running back is in the game ..
No, not really it’s just two different types of running form. They both do well and are great running backs so you really don’t have to block differently for them. Ryan is going to put his head down and go, as where Darius is going to try and make you miss. It’s not really a big difference to us (the offensive linemen) at all.
Ryan Grant – running back
On being able to contribute after dealing with an injury ..
Each day I’m closer and that makes me feel better just because I know when I’m back in football I can do big things for this team. I also know that everybody is going to step-up on the team. As a whole I think everybody has done a great job at just stepping up and knowing what we can get done and what we can accomplish and really taking advantage of the situation that we have.
On it appearing that his vision is back to how it was in 2002 ..
I feel comfortable. I’ve been working on a lot of different things this year and I feel comfortable where I’m at with my ability. My leg right now is hindering me from doing certain things but I’m anxious to be in a position where I can be full go and when that time comes I’ll take full advantage of it.
On his leg bothering him the whole season ..
I don’t think it’s going to hinder me throughout the whole season. How long? I don’t know, because it’s getting better and I’m recovering faster. I can do more each week so I definitely don’t think it’ll hinder me the whole season. I’m just trying to do as much as possible to get it back to full strength and get as much treatment to try and contribute to the team.
Anthony Fasano – tight end
On what wide receiver Matt Shelton brings to the offense ..
He’s really played off his abilities. He’s provided a big spark for our offense that I don’t think a lot of people expected coming into the season. He’s really helping our big-play capabilities.
On the momentum of the team heading into the Washington game ..
After the win this past Saturday night I think it’s always great to get a win but we really knew that we weren’t satisfied. We didn’t play as well as we could have and I think we knew that and we have a lot to work on this week and we really need to come out on Saturday and play really well and get another big one.
Mike Goolsby – linebacker
On Tom Zbikowski ..
I’ve been saying all along since Tommy came into camp and a lot of guys around here have, coaches especially, he’s a special type of player and he’s going to be a celebrity around here in a couple of years. He’s one of the best all-around players. There was a time during camp that we were watching special teams footage and he was gunner control, playing corner on punt return team, and on the very next film clip he’s returning the punt. The kid can literally do it all. He’s a great player and he’s only going to continue to get better.
On teams trying to control defensive end Justin Tuck ..
He’s going to get all of the attention especially on passing downs and third-and-longs. He’s a great player and I think he’s already got three sacks on the year. Justin may not get the sack that he wants or the sack that a lot of people expect out of him but just the fact that he’s out there on the field being a distraction for the offense, knowing that you have to get prepared and get people around him just to block one guy helps us tremendously as a defense.
On Matt Shelton ..
You have to love a kid like Shelton just catching deep balls like that, going up and making that catch against Michigan. I thought that was the play of the game. He deserves it. Matt’s been around for a long time. Freshman year he was assigned to me as my little brother so I have a nice little bond with Matt. You’ve seen him making plays the whole time that he has been here. It’s just nice for him to finally get a chance to show everybody what he can do in a big-time game like last week.