Coach Fisher's Monday press conference


(On about how many plays they faced a four-linebacker package from Indianapolis)

You know, I would say somewhere between 20 and 25 plays.

(On what the Colts wanted out of that formation and how the Titans countered it)

Well, it was a departure from what they're used to doing. Obviously, it was their attempt to shutdown and address our run game. They must have felt that having four linebackers on the field with the four down linemen was going to obviously give them the best chance and it did. It was very effective but it also suggests that you'll have opportunities to make plays elsewhere and that's what Mike [Heimerdinger] and Kerry [Collins] did. They took advantage of it, recognized it and we just picked the ball up and started throwing.

(On if that defensive formation was an invitation to throw the ball)

Yeah, they stayed with it.

(On if that particular formation came on any specific downs or distances)

It was generally first down or second-and-five or less, six or less. It was run-oriented downs.

(On the status of Dave Ball)

Dave Ball suffered a concussion as did Quinton Ganther and they're both doing fairly well today. They both cleared up on the sideline and they're both doing well. They will be most likely a game-time decision but probably day-to-day.

(On losing Dave Ball right off the bat after Kyle Vanden Bosch was declared inactive)

Well, we kept four healthy defensive ends up. That was our goal going in when we made the decision to hold Kyle another week. So we went down to three and they played hard, the three of them played very hard. It was good to see them respond.

(On what it says about the Titans' coverage teams that they're knocking themselves out during plays)

Well, we had one on the kickoff return team and then we had one on the kickoff cover team. I mean it was a physical game, that's how this game usually is and there was a lot of big-contact plays in the ball game.

(On how close Kyle Vanden Bosch was to playing)

He was much better than he was the week before.

(On if holding Kyle Vanden Bosch out was a long-term decision)

That's the concern. Yeah, we'd like to get him back to where he's full speed and as close to 100 percent as we can because we don't want to have any setbacks.

(On if weather was a factor in deactivating Kyle Vanden Bosch)

It was not a factor.

(On the performances of Jacob Ford and William Hayes)

They played a lot of plays and they were productive. The ball was coming out and we handled the run game fairly well for the most part with the exception of a couple plays. I think they got the alignments and we executed the pass rush game as best we could and I thought it was good. It was valuable work for both of them.

(On if he knows the fireworks engineer at LP Field and whether or not he still has the job)

They're still looking into the matter so I guess that's the best way to put it. I don't know him personally, no.

(On what his reaction would have been if Rob Bironas had missed the kick when the fireworks went off or if the Colts had been kicking when it happened)

First off, let me just say this. It's not something you do when your opponent scores, you don't celebrate the opponent scoring in your stadium. But there was a timing issue. It came at the absolute worst time. If it did happen and your opponent was on the field, I would imagine the marketing budget would be significantly reduced by the league office. If the kick was missed, I would venture to guess that would probably fall under the category of a palpably unfair act and I would assume that the referee would allow the opposing team to re-kick.

(On what it says about Rob Bironas that he was not distracted by the fireworks)

I don't think he realized they went off until somebody told him. Rob was fine. Craig [Hentrich] was very aware of the situation.

(On Dave Ball missing a chance to start on Monday Night Football)

Well, Dave has played a lot of snaps for us, he played a lot last week for us and he played a lot when Kyle [Vanden Bosch] went down in Baltimore. He's playing well and injuries are part of the game. It happens, but he'll continue to bounce back and play well for us.

(On if Chris Johnson got away with a fumble)

Well, this is a case where the play was originally ruled down by contact and they have every right to challenge the play. But keep in mind, with down by contact rulings on the field, recovery has to be obvious. So you have to be able to determine recovery through replay, if it's not obvious, then you can't overturn the play. I'm suspecting that's why Tony [Dungy] decided not to challenge that play. You have a pile. Alge [Crumpler] ended up eventually coming up with the ball and we've been through that before. We've had that work against us as well where we had an obvious fumble, it was ruled down by contact but because they couldn't determine recovery in the process, you can't overturn the play.

(On the play of Melvin Bullitt)

I mentioned that last week. I pointed Melvin's play out to the team before Week 17 last year when Bob [Sanders] was not going to play because he was held out I believe for rest for playoffs sake. Melvin was playing very well at that time, he's a good football player and they've got a very good defense, as I've said. They've got tremendous speed and they rally quick and they show up and they're good tacklers. It was evident last night.

(On Peyton Manning and Dallas Clark connecting)

Well he completed a couple of balls to him, which he usually does every time we play him. They got us in the play-action and they got us down the seam. They didn't do anything we're not used to seeing, they just executed.

(On how impressed he was with the comeback)

We came in feeling good about the first half from the standpoint of, we managed it, we overcame the emotions associated with the start of the game and we played. We knew we had left a lot of plays out there, we knew that we had a chance to make some plays based on their plan and so nobody panicked, they just kept playing. The defense knows, those guys have been around long enough to know they have to be patient. They're going to make plays. We were patient, we got that real solid third-quarter drive, got the touchdown, got the two-point conversion, and obviously the quarter changed and we took the wind and started making some plays.

(On being in control of their own destiny)

You know what, that's not an issue for this team right now. You know what the issue is? (Reporter answers, 'Green Bay?') Thank you.

(On keeping the team's edge with a four-game lead in the division)

Put the Green Bay tape on. Look at what [Aaron] Rodgers is doing, look at what their defense is doing. We've got 12 interceptions, they've got 13. They're getting the ball back, they're running the football, they're scoring a lot of points, throwing touchdown passes, returning kicks for touchdowns. They're a good football team. They beat the Colts a week ago and they've obviously had a week off. So our challenge is a short week after an emotional game, keeping things in perspective and getting ready to play the next game.

(On the staff keeping focused with the division lead)

It's a week-to-week thing. It's a different approach every week. The dynamics of each game are different week to week. Certainly the Kansas City Chiefs game was a lot different than this one, as will be the case with the Packers coming to town.

(On playing a team coming off a bye while you're on a short week)

It's part of the scheduling process. It happens, it's happened before. I think last year there were only two teams that played Monday night games on the road and then traveled the following week. We did that [from] Denver to Cincinnati and that's not an easy thing to do. The Monday night game is all well and good and last night's experience was terrific. I thought the fans and just everything associated with the event was tremendous. As I said, it's a great thing for Nashville nationally. And now it's over and now we have the challenge of a short week and it's against a good opponent. So we'll put that in perspective and move on.

(On if the team will review tape of the Colts game)

We'll not review it with the players. We'll make corrections, although most of the corrections were made on the sideline. We'll not review it with the players. The coaching staff has looked at it and we've moved on. Typically in the Monday night process, the assistants will go ahead and move on to the next opponent prior to kickoff. We got a lot of work done on behalf of the staff Sunday and Monday, but we don't permit the coordinators to get involved in that.

(On the player's schedule during the short week)

Well, tomorrow for them is a Tuesday, which is typically a day off but it's a work day for us, it's a Wednesday. So we'll definitely back down tomorrow but we have to follow the same installation schedule.

(On the performance of Lavelle Hawkins)

He was alright. There were a couple of motion things there but I mean that was a great toe-tap on the sideline. That was a great throw by Kerry [Collins], he got it down and it was a big play for us. He's getting better. He's getting more and more comfortable with what we're doing, he had a good practice week.

(On teaching rookies how to focus and not to panic when down at the half)

Yeah, it's good. We've gotten a lot of contribution from our young guys, young players like [Stanford] Keglar and Craig Stevens. I mean they're playing so it's a real good experience for them to go through that but all they have to do is look around the room and see the veterans that have been through it. They realize, and even the veterans who haven't been in this kind of game in a couple of years, realized yesterday afternoon that it's a long day. That was a long wait and the young guys I think were made very much aware it was going to be long and how to handle the day and I thought they handled it well.

(On if this was one of the best performances by the defense containing Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne)

Statistically, it was probably one of our better efforts, yes.

(On the hands to the face penalty)

If you're talking about hands to the face, it has nothing to do with whether it was the point of attack or away [from the ball]. It is hands to the face. So if it's picked up by the official, it's going to be called.

(On if players have a harder time than coaches dealing with hype)

They've shown each week that you do what you have to do and you move on. They've talked about it themselves and they talked about it last night. We're moving on to the short week and Green Bay. They accomplished what they wanted to accomplish, they beat the Colts and now we're going to move on.

(On if it's rare to have the kind of players who can keep such focus)

Well, I think we've learned that over time. We learned that at 0-1 and through 0-5 we learned that. You have to move on and we've learned the hard way that you just take it one week at a time. You can't consume yourself with what may happen weeks down the road. The only thing you can affect is the upcoming week and that's the great approach that they're taking.

(On the decision to go for two)

Yeah, I mean we were down by two. If it was a first-half decision I may go the other way. But really I take a lot into consideration, how we're playing, how the game's going, the number of points we're scoring, I mean there were three and a half minutes left in the third quarter. Plus we felt like we had a good play. I let Mike [Heimerdinger] know in advance and we got it down. It was a great call.

(On if he debated reviewing the LenDale White play near the goal line that he eventually scored on later)

No, I gave them the wind in the third quarter, electing to have the wind in the fourth quarter, anticipating that this game would come down to the end, and that we would benefit from the wind if Rob [Bironas] needed to make a kick to win it at the end. So with that thought process, I was not going to jeopardize a timeout.

(On if he thought LenDale White crossed the goal line before his eventual touchdown)

Yeah, I thought he crossed the plane.

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