RE: Have you had any more time to really sift through the events of Monday night and that final minute?**
"In all honesty, I sat down yesterday and kind of went through it a little bit more and just made the decision to move on. I addressed it again with the team this morning about what happened on Monday night, the different series of events that took place, and we put it behind us. And we're going to move forward and learn from it."
RE: Did you ever contact the league about what protocol should be?
"I put a call in and am waiting for a return call. But I put a call in. But right now, to me, it doesn't matter anymore. I'm done with it. I wanted to really bring closure to it from the league standpoint, and I just ended up bringing closure to it from a personal standpoint. Because right now, all that matters is St. Louis and we've got a tough game in front of us, and I'm excited about that. Our team is excited about that. I'm ready to go forward with that."
RE: What about Shaun Hill's play in the game?
"As I look at Shaun Hill, I thought he did exactly, with the exception of a couple of plays, I thought he did exactly what we thought he would bring. For the most part, I thought he made some good decisions. I thought he put the ball where it needed to be put. I thought he handled the offense well. I thought he managed it well, with the exception of a couple of plays. That's about what we thought we'd get."
RE: Jason Hill?
"I talked to him a couple of times before the game, really all the rookie receivers, and just let them know, 'You know what? It's time to step up. We don't have any more rookies. It's time to go.' I thought Jason responded really well. I thought it was a great opportunity for him, so I was very excited about what he was able to bring. Not surprised, but excited."
RE: Could he be a starter at some point this season?
"We're going to find out as time goes forward with some of the injuries we have. It all depends. But hopefully he just continues to perform and do well, and we'll find out going forward."
RE: What did you learn about Shaun Hill on that third down play when he was running with his helmet off for the first down?
"Once again, Shaun Hill is a blue-collar guy. It did not surprise me one bit. I was excited to see it. The guys on the sideline really responded. So it was great. It was great to see. I got to tell you, though; I don't want him to do that too often. But that's him. That's Shaun Hill."
RE: Based on what happened Monday would you expect to change anything with the communication with the booth and the sideline? Is there any tweaking there that needs to be done?
"No, I don't really think that was the issue. The issues that happened Monday night outside of the first 23 seconds of that 43-second period, outside of that there were some things that happened that we knew what the issues were but it was getting them corrected was the problem. So it's nothing about the booth or anything. They were doing a great job getting us the information that we needed, it was just a matter of we had no authority on the field to get those things, nor did we have the time. So the proper protocol just did not go well."
RE: Do you like having your offensive coordinator on the sideline? It's kind of unusual. A lot of offensive coordinators are in the booth. What's your feelings about that and do you think if Mike [Martz] had been up in the booth it would have alleviated some of that?
"I feel like there are some coordinators that they're better on the field than they are in the booth and vice versa. I think it depends on that person. It depends on their eyes. Mike's been doing this a long time, and I don't really think it mattered if he's in the booth or he's on the field. I've seen great coordinators on both ends. Some just want to be in the booth away from everything and concentrate and [say] 'Don't talk, I'm looking at it.' Some want to be on the field where they can experience every moment, every feeling, and see the quarterback when he gets off the…when he comes off the field. And look in his eyes. And have a feel for what's going on rather than talking through the speaker, the headphone. That's on him. I know he knows what's best for him and I would never want to say, 'Hey. You know what? You'd do better in the booth.' I don't…no. I don't want to put handcuffs on anyone or limit anyone. If that's where he feels comfortable, that's fine with me."
RE: Last year, Frank Cignetti was the so-called spotter. He was the guy who told the offensive coordinator what the down and distance was. Is there somebody who has that job this year in the booth?
"There were so many other things going on. We were still trying to deal with the time on the clock. We were still trying to deal with the issue of saying that the clock will start on the whistle, rather than the clock will start when the ball is snapped. So it's not…once again, I wish I could really explain to you guys. At that moment it seemed really easy. 'Well, the ball is spotted right here. This is happening…' It wasn't like that. It was chaos. It was chaos on every end. I'm over there talking to two guys…the whole nine yards. To me, once again, it's behind us. What's done is done. As a team, as a staff, we will go forward and make those corrections as they come. We will continue, or we will, out here work on those issues that we need to work on: the two-minute, the four-minute, and all those things – making sure we put ourselves in every scenario so that it does not happen again. And, at the very least, if something like that happens again I'll run on the field and just sit on the ball or something. Because that can't happen."
RE: How much more comfortable did you feel this week as the head coach?
"This week? I felt great. I feel like this: when you have players that respond the way these players are responding and you have a coaching staff that's as competent as the coaching staff that we have, you can't help but feel very comfortable. So I feel very fortunate to have that and be surrounded by it."
RE: In light of the past two games and the fact that you're facing another 2-7 team, do you feel any added pressure in this matchup against St. Louis?
"Pressure is something that I really…pressure comes with coaching. The minute that you say you're going to coach, that's pressure right there. But if you're supposed to be coaching and you're doing your job, you don't feel it. All you can do is your best. If that's not enough then maybe you should be doing something else."
RE: People watching the game from home came away from it with the perspective that maybe you and Mike Martz clash a lot. There was that sequence on the sideline where you appeared to be going at it really good. What is your relationship with Mike Martz, and is it a good working relationship?
"You know what; I'm got to be very, very honest with you. It is amazing…I guess they can read lips or something like that. I don't know what they saw. The only thing I said to Mike Martz…well, we said a few things. But it was never any issue about a call or…there was only one time I said, 'Mike.' He said, 'I know it. We're going to run. We're going to run.' That was it. He knew it. He read my mind. That was it. But that's it. I'm very, very thankful to be working with Mike Martz and I have a great relationship with him. And I don't want to make it seem like we're best of friends. It's a professional relationship. But even so, I've had the opportunity to sit down with him many nights and just talk. Just talk about our guys; talk about where we are; talk about the possibilities; kind of dream together. So we've got a great relationship, as well as Greg [Manusky]."
RE: After the game, people started dissecting your words. When you talked about, 'That was Coach Martz's call. That's what he thought.' Was that…how should that be interpreted?
"In all honesty it's amazing to me how people…I don't know if there is a dialect or a particular language that's out there where you can say something and not have people interpret it a different way. The only thing I meant by that was this: I'm out there trying to talk to the referees and the officials and try to get where is the ball going to be placed. Can we get those 12 seconds back on the clock? Can we do those things so that we can get to the sideline and make a decision? Meanwhile, you've got the ref coming to the sideline and basically says, 'The ball's going to be snapped on the whistle.' Wait, wait, wait. There's just so many little things going on. To me, it's just one of those things where in a game of that magnitude you hate to get down to that point in the game and have it end like that. But I believe that all things work for a reason. I believe that all things happen for a reason. As I look back on that game, as I look back on that experience, as I said before we're just going to go forward. We'll learn from it. If it comes up again, we'll handle it a heck of a lot better – everything that's in our control. Other than that, I'll just go sit on the ball."
RE: Mike Martz said something kind of interesting yesterday saying that he didn't know where the ball was spotted until yesterday morning when he had a phone call from Mike Nolan. I just was wondering what you thought about that and have you been in touch with Mike Nolan in getting advice?
"Mike [Nolan] and I have talked and Mike [Martz] has a really interesting sense of humor. I'm still trying to get it myself. He's laughing and I'm trying to figure out, 'What did he mean by that?' But I heard about that, but I'm going to leave that. That's Mike [Martz]."
RE: Which Mike?
"Mike Martz. That's Mike Martz. I'll leave that with all the interpretation however you figure it out, want to word it. Take it. But he's got a sense of humor now."
RE: Coach, you said like you feel the players are responding. You, in particular pointed out Vernon after this last game. Do you feel like that moment you guys had turned positive [and] he responded to you?
RE: When you guys had the little thing on the field a couple of weeks ago:
"It was the moment the next day. It was the next day when he came in the offense and we sat down and we talked. Vernon is a really great person. Contrary to everything maybe it looks like, whatever, the guy is a great kid. Great man. We all have issues that we've got to work through. I've got mine. He's got his. But he's one of the neatest individuals you want to be around. When he comes out here and he works – there's nobody that outworks him. There's no one that wants to do better than he does, and he's working at it every day. What else can you ask for?"
RE: Just to clarify, you're happy with the way things are in the booth?
"No, I'm not happy. No, I'm not happy. I'm not happy."
RE: Are you going to make any changes with the communication with the booth and the sidelines?
"No, I'm not going to…I'm not going to at this moment. No. The only other changes that we're going to make is that we're just going to continue to get better. And getting better means that we have to do this a little better, do that a little better but other than that, no."