Quotes courtesy of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers public relations department.

(Bucs head coach Jon Gruden on the overall game)
“I feel comfortable in black here. I feel like it was a good selection of clothes.  That’s about all I did well today was wear black.  I’d like to congratulate the Saints.  They came in today and played a heck of a football game.  Drew Brees had a tremendous performance and I really tip my hat to their football team.  They had an impressive victory.  We battled back into the football game. We had a tremendous effort to make it a 17-14 game.  Unfortunately, it got away from us again to start the third quarter, much as it did to start the football game.”

(Gruden on why the slow starts)
“Right now, we are not the juggernaut, offensively, that I think we want to be or we’re going to be. I really have confidence that we are going to continue to get better.  We’ve got some young guys playing obviously, and we have to do a better job certainly as coaches.  Defensively, we gave up way too many big plays.  I don’t understand it, I really don’t, but we have to make the corrections and all I can say is, to fall behind against a team that leads the division at home, 17-0, is not what we are about here.”

(Gruden on why the team is struggling to get the run game going)
“We’re trying, you know. Obviously, first down is a premier run down in this league. We’re trying running the ball from a one-back set, a two-back set, with two tight ends, three tight ends and no tight ends.  We didn’t have any sustained success at all and part of that, obviously, is that they’re going to make us do some things maybe that we wouldn’t like to do. It is a credit to New Orleans. They did a good job defensively as they have done throughout the season.”  

(Gruden on the offense)
“We had a couple of opportunities.  We had some negative plays on first down that put us way behind in the down and distance.  We missed a couple opportunities, I think, in the passing game on first and second down to keep us in some normal third-down situations.  But Bruce [Gradkowski] I think will be the first to tell you that he was a little quick to get rid of the ball early in the football game.  It is something that he has to learn from a little bit.  I am not going to put it all on him.  I will put it all on myself.  It is hard to get guys wide open in this league and certainly it’s hard to run the ball.  That’s the hardest thing to do.  You can ask New Orleans today; they didn’t have much success either. We have to do a better job certainly, game-planning and executing.”

(Bucs cornerback Ronde Barber on the loss)
“I don’t have a lot to say about this one.  It was ugly.  Everybody needs to point to themselves and say, ‘It’s their fault.’”

(Barber on if the Buccaneers did anything different in coverage)
“I’ll have to look at it, but I don’t know.  I’m struggling to find perspective of what happened today.  I don’t have a lot of words for it.  It’s obviously not what we want.  We all have to be accountable.”

(Barber on the rest of the season)
“At the beginning of the year we sign up for 16 games.  Last time I checked we have eight more games and I’m still signed up, and we’ll go back to work.  It’s what we do. It’s what we have to do.”

(Barber on the Saints wide receivers)
“They get open and they can catch the ball.  I give them credit for catching the ball when they are wide open.  That’s football.”

Barber on QB Drew Brees)
“He threw the ball pretty quick.  He’s a rhythm thrower and he’s smart.  He doesn’t make a lot of mistakes.  We said that going into this game.  I don’t know.  I’m shocked the way that we played.”

(Bucs LB Derrick Brooks on the Saints’ passing attack)
“A couple times [we were in]  man-to-man coverage and they threw the ball up, we have to make a play and we didn’t.  Other times, against our blitz, where we expected to come free, [we gave them] too much time, and they just made more plays this time around.  It’s like we took away their vertical passing game the first time we played them and we let a couple of runs get out.  Today, we played the run better but we didn’t take away the big plays.  It’s like all their drives came off of big passing plays, either them making a play or us not making a play.  They did a good job of that today.”

(Brooks on being 2-6 halfway through the season)
“You think about the rest of the season, then you are doing too much.  All we can do right now is take a couple of days here and let this first half soak in and soak out of you.  Come back the second half, three of our four games on the road.  So we definitely have to be cohesive and we have to come together even tighter now, because we are playing away games.  I think you’ll see a very united football team that’s, again, going to go out and play better than we played today.”

(Brooks on the impact of the early offensive struggles on the defense)
“We have to make our plays for them.  Like I said, whether its getting three-and-outs of our own or getting turnovers.  We can’t go out there and give up long plays.  We have to stop helping people out.  When our offense takes a while to get it going, we as a defense have to step up and provide a turnover or provide a splash play to get them going.”

(Bucs WR Joey Galloway on the game)
“We didn’t make enough plays.  They did what they wanted to on offense and they stopped us when we had the ball.  It’s going to be tough to win like that.”

(Galloway on the slow offensive start)
“Our goal was to start fast and we didn’t do that today, especially offensively.  We did not get off to a good start.  They got up and got the lead on us.  Any time you get behind to a good team like they are, a team that offensively can control the time of possession, then it’s going to be tough to come back and win.”

(Galloway on his first touchdown)
“Really a nice throw by Bruce [Gradkowski].  We had bump-and-run coverage; right play call at the right time.  And then a nice throw by Bruce.”

(Galloway on his second touchdown)
“It’s a play to go over the middle.  I think it’s the linebacker’s responsibility to get back and Bruce just beat him with the ball.”

(Galloway on the adjustment the Saints made in the second half)
“It’s going to be easier once we watch film to figure that out.  I do know that we just didn’t play well.  Offensively, in the second half, we didn’t do anything.  We didn’t do anything well.  When you’re behind and you’re not playing well offensively, it’s always going to be tough.”

(Galloway on the upcoming schedule)
“We’re going to take them one at a time starting with Carolina.  We’re going to go, try to get that win, and go from there.”

(Bucs QB Bruce Gradkowski on the game)
 “We started off slow.  You can’t do that against a good football team and it’s just little things here and there, little mistakes.  I missed a throw here, we jump offsides there, so it’s just little things here and there.  It’s good to know, that we can correct it and get through it.  We have to correct it and we have to get through it.  We have to keep pushing and we will.”

(Gradkowski on the shift of the momentum at the end of the first half)
“Definitely, I felt like we had the momentum going at halftime.  We put together two nice drives in the second quarter and it gave us some momentum.  We just needed to come out in the second half.  Our defense had a good hold and we just needed to put together another drive in that third quarter and we’ll be just fine.  We have spurts here and there; we just need to find it and put together a full game and a full 60 minutes.”

(More from Gradkowski on the game)
“We just have to execute better.  There are some times where I’m missing throws here and there and I have to correct that.  That is something that I have to get better with and be more poised in the pocket and make those plays.  I think this experience is helping me get better.  We are going through some tough times right now, but we’ll push through, we’ll be alright and we have a long road ahead of us.”

(Gradkowski on how frustrating it has been for him)
“It is definitely frustrating.  Especially when you see the good things you can do, especially an offense.  In that second quarter that’s the way we look, that’s how we can play.  We can do that a lot more often and that’s what we need to do.”

(Gradkowski on the two touchdown passes to Galloway)
“Joey [Galloway], any time you see him matched up man-to-man, you have to take a shot.  He ran a great route, he went and got the ball and it was a great play to get us started and get points on the board.  Then the second play, it was a take-a-shot play.  We were so many seconds left in the second quarter, we knew we were in field goal range and I thought, ‘Let me take a shot where only he can catch it.’  He made a great play on it; fortunately enough we were able to score before the half.”  

(Bucs RB Cadillac Williams on the game)
 “It’s tough.  Once again, we just fell behind, and the carries I was getting, it wasn’t like I was doing a great job [with them].  I definitely need to put it on myself, also.”

(Williams on teams focusing on stopping the run)
“Basically, that is what it comes down to.  They are crowding the ball.  Teams are trying to make us pass the ball.  All that said, there is no way we should be doing as poorly as we are running the ball.”

(Williams the offense)
“You have to tip your hat off to [the Saints].  They are a really good defense.  They play sound football.  They stay in their gaps.  Also, it was a lot of us.  We are just not getting the job done on offense.  It’s as simple as that.”

(Williams on why the offense started slow)
“It’s hard to put a finger on it.  It’s hard.  I definitely want to say that we were flat.  Something just wasn’t right.”


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