|Q: How much did [Kentwan] Balmer play?
Nolan: "I didn't bring the numbers down here with me, but Kentwan is getting better, he's doing a good job. When we talk about him, it's been positive. He also does a nice job in the special teams area. He does a couple things for us there in field goal protection as well as kickoff return he does well, but on defense he's doing a good job. We do not hesitate to put him in the game."
Q: Do you think he is going to get more action?
Nolan: "I think as he goes along, sure. I'm going to guess he had a dozen, 16, maybe 20, maybe."
Q: The secondary had a tough time and I guess certainly that is related to the amount of time that Drew Brees had to throw. It just seemed like there were some plays, their receivers were a little bit more aggressive in getting to the ball. Do you see it that way? How did you a.ssess your secondary's performance?
Nolan: "Well, you can call it what you want when you lose."
Q: Well, we are trying to kind of-
Nolan: "I know. The vertical passes are the ones that got us in trouble. They were, but if you don't see the big plays, then obviously you keep the ball in front of you and we played a pretty solid game in the secondary. But, the explosive plays that occurred, they did occur and they are inexcusable. You want to find out why they happened and like I told you, there are some mental lapses, mental errors. It wasn't like somebody got whipped on an all out blitz. Two weeks ago against Denver, Denver all out blitzed and [Robert] Meachem had a 70-yard gain down to the 5-yard line I think, but they have an all-out, zero, everybody's got their own guy, no matter what, no help at all. For ours, we didn't have that much time on those deep balls so there was a guy deep as well as the player itself should have stayed on top of the receiver. That's not just physical, as much as it is mental, keeping yourself out of harm's way so to speak. That's where those big ones get attention. Anything underneath, they are going to complete some balls underneath, obviously they are a good team. I thought we did some outstanding things defensively in the game as far as [Reggie] Bush goes, all those things. I'm even embarrassed to go to the positives. But, again it's about winning and losing so again, you ignore the positives sometimes when you lose the game. We need to address the things we did poorly, get them corrected and make sure we change the problem and still do the things we did well, well."
Q: In the third quarter, you challenged a reception by the Saints. Why did you challenge it?
Nolan: "You know what, I took my time on that too, that challenge, because I wanted to slow the game down. Obviously, it was a challenge that was, the significance of it wasn't a great deal. But, at the time I was thinking about burning a time out just to slow things down. So I just used a challenge instead. At the same time I looked, I thought he bobbled it, and when I looked up at the screen I saw that he didn't have complete control when he went to the ground, so I thought I might get it back. But to me, more than anything, I just wanted to slow things down. If you have the opportunity, because I've frequently have seen in the first few weeks, even on third down, I've called a timeout maybe once a game, and it's played to our advantage thus far this season. Where I think, 'Look it, I just want to get this situation just right so we can get off the field.' If there's a preceding play that gives me an opportunity just to challenge, because I don't lose anything, I'm going to lose a timeout either way. Something like that did it. But, otherwise, like I said, it was to gain time as much as anything. Just maybe I could win it and keep another challenge."
Q: Do you know how many times you've done that? Thrown a flag partly to slow the game down?
Nolan: "I think I did it against the Denver Broncos when we won two years ago - three years ago? Two years ago. It was the one where Walt Harris picked the ball up, and it wasn't on any of the film, and there was a fumble. They didn't rule a fumble. They kept looking at the film longer, and longer, and longer and next thing you know there was an angle that showed Walt picked the ball up, so they gave us the ball. It wasn't even a turnover. I mean, nobody had even thought the ball had been fumbled. As a matter of fact, they made a rule because of that, that if everyone stops playing, and they used that play as an example. If everyone stops playing, then they won't call it a fumble either. They'll just call it dead play. So that, that kind of caused them."
Q: If Manny Lawson can't play, who would play in his spot?
Nolan: "Parys Haralson is who backs him up. So, more than likely, it will be Parys. With the ability, possibly, to pull Tully [Banta-Cain] up. We'll see how it goes. It will not only affect the defense, but it will affect the special teams. So, right now that would be the likely move."
Q: There were times where J.T. O'Sullivan held on to the ball too long and he didn't sense the blind-side rush. What are the things he needs to do, specifically, at this point to overcome those things?
Nolan: "Well, I think it's clear to see when he plays, he moves the ball. You can see he's in command of what he's doing. He's very coachable. He takes what Mike [Martz], Ted [Tollner] and even myself, which I don't say that much about what he should do [on] certain things, to heart, and he listens very clearly. He tries to do it exactly like it's supposed to be done. I think he just needs to continue experience each game as it comes. As a football team, we have to secure the ball. He had a few turnovers in the game with the fumble that he got on the sack and then the other two [interceptions]. But, he does a lot of real good things. For us to be in that game and not be playing all that well like we were at the end there, right before we threw that interception at the goal line on the 10-yard-line, which would have made it 17-21. You know, we're right there knocking at the door. He just needs to continue playing. I've been encouraged by what he does. He encourages - when he's on the field, he does some things that give, I think, give everyone from the players to the fans and the coaches alike, gives us that feeling that we have a chance to score."
Q: Any line-up changes coming this week?
Nolan: "No, because we continue to mix everyone in. Now, somebody may appear like they're playing more because of the personnel usage and maybe we have more snaps, but every game goes that way. Like I said, Isaac Bruce catches no balls in the first one, catches them in the second game. Game plans have things that do that and who the defense takes away."
Q: I'm thinking more in the secondary. Will Dashon Goldson play more this week?
Nolan: "We'll have the same thing there. That's an experienced group. It was not - you know, what occurred at the beginning with the big plays was not a good thing. That has not been a recurring theme in the secondary, what happened."
[pic - click to view]
Last edited by iCON216; 09-29-2008 at 05:25 PM..