HEAD COACH KEN WHISENHUNT**
I am proud of our team for the way they fought. We were down a number of guys. We had guys playing positions they haven't played before. We hung in there and we fought. I am extremely frustrated with us giving the game away by the penalty there at the end. We had two situations with penalties that just can't happen and we addressed it in the locker room after the game. Obviously, where we are as a team there is a lot of frustration because of the way our guys have fought and battled and we hadn't won enough games. When you get into a situation like that in the fourth quarter after you fought your guts out to try and get in that position and you get them off the field on third down, that can't happen. So, that is extremely disappointing.
(on if he received explanation from Wesley Woodyard on penalty call)
Well, I can tell you he didn't say anything. That's a former teammate of his and he said he said didn't say anything. I didn't see it but I heard it looked like he was standing over him, so I think that's what it was called for.
(on thinking if the call was worthy of a penalty)
You know, there was a lot of back-and-forth between both teams. Obviously, the situation was there where other players that came on the field and I think that led to that as well. But you know, it looked like the player punched Wes (Wesley Woodyard) in the facemask, too. It looked like to me it could have been off-setting.
(on what he would tell a player in handling the situation)
You can't do that. You can't stand over the guy. You can't put yourself in a position especially with the way the emotions the way they are in that game. It's an emotional game. You have to play with emotion, you have to play with intensity, but you have to be aware of the situation when it is fourth-down-and-long, our defense is off the field. You can't do that.
(on if the penalty is especially frustrating since it was on a team captain)
Yes, it is frustrating. Like I said, we addressed it after the game.
(on if a thrown punch initiated the altercation)
Jurrell (Casey) was pretty upset. I don't know, I haven't talked to Jurrell specifically about that. I know a couple of guys came off their bench and got involved with that melee which I didn't think was right, but we didn't. You don't like to see that when one of your better players, who is also a captain, you run the risk of losing for the rest of the game so it wasn't a good thing.
(on if the altercation energized the team)
I thought we played with emotion the whole day. You know our guys really fought, physical. You know we tried to pound the ball, run on them a little bit and tried to stick with it. So, that's part of the game.
(on Jake Locker's condition)
He could have come back in but probably would have been only able to hand off. His shoulder came out, they put it back in, not his throwing shoulder but it would have been tough. He couldn't have thrown if he would had to come back in.
(on if thinks Jake Locker will return this season)
He potentially could, but I am not a 100 percent certain about that until I talk with Todd (Toriscelli). You know, I think a lot of it depends on how he reacts.
(on being snakebit at the quarterback position) **
Well you know you can pick a couple of other positions where we have had bad luck, too. But unfortunately that's the way it is. But I want to be clear that Zach's (Mettenberger) and Jake's are different, but yeah you know it's hard. That's an important position and we have had a couple of guys get injured there.
(on the offensive line not giving up many sacks today)
Our guys fought, they battled. That's a good defense that we played against. It was tough. The quarterbacks made some good plays, moving out of the pocket, made some throws. I appreciate the way our offensive guys worked together, but ultimately, it wasn't enough.
(on why Leon Washington was back on the free kick after the safety)
Leon (Washington) catches a lot of punts during the course of practice. What that is, is a kickoff return, even though they're punting. Leon has worked with the kickoff return scheme more so than Dexter (McCluster). As you can see by a couple of kickoff returns that we hit well, that's why.
(on the emergency quarterback for this game)
He (Kris Durham) was the guy that was going to have to go.
(on if Kris Durham had practiced the emergency quarterback role during the week)
Not much. It would have been a stressful situation, no question.
(on the defense's performance minus the late penalty)
If you don't give that penalty up, I think it's a winning effort by our defense. I thought they played hard. Those uys worked very hard on the matches with their schemes because the Jets do a lot of different things. They played well, they tackled well. They made good plays on the ball. There were a lot of positives about the way our defense played today, except for of course, the penalty.
(on Charlie Whitehurst's play after Jake Locker left the game)
Charlie (Whitehurst) made some good throws. He moved in the pocket, ran with the ball. We missed a number of throws in the game, especially on third down, short throws we overthrew them or we didn't catch them. But you know, we were aware of the pressure. They brought a lot of pressure today, and we were trying to get the ball out so we could counter that. The long answer to your question is I thought Charlie did a good job.
(on the last play of the game)
When Delanie (Walker) has the ball in his hands, I always get excited. I wish he would have pitched it back inside to one of those guys. When he broke clean after getting it from Charlie (Whitehurst), with just what I've seen him do with the ball, I had hope.
(on if that was how the play was supposed to be executed)
We do work on that play every week. You don't know how it's going to go. They did a nice job with making the play.
(on injuries other than Jake Locker)
We lost (Brett) Brackett, the tight end to a knee. We were down in numbers there. Shonn Greene got dinged one time but he came back in, so that's not an issue. I haven't talked with Todd (Toriscelli), so I don't know if there was anything else that came up.
(on Dontay Moch's injury)
I saw him coming running off with his finger at a crazy angle. I don't know what was resolved with that.
(on the four-day turnaround to Thursday night's game)
Sure, it'll be a challenge. We spent a lot of emotion out there today. We put a lot on that field. We left our guts out there. It's hard, no question. This team is fighting, that's one of the things that I like. Those guys do fight. We'll bounce back and work, and try to put our best effort out there.
(on the team's mindset)
They're stinging right now. They're a resilient group. We'll bounce back, and we'll be ready to go. This is a chance to play on Thursday Night Football. I think anytime you're playing in a game like that, you get energized. That's actually a good thing, even though it's a short week. We'll make sure we take care of them from a standpoint of getting enough rest and going forward.
(on Thursday night games)
Thursday night games are part of the league. It doesn't matter what I think, they're there.
DT JURRELL CASEY**
(on what happened that led to his 15-yard penalty during the game)
I want to apologize to my team for putting us in a bad situation like that. And I have to control myself in those situations and control my feelings out there.
(on if the Titans' season frustrations contributed to the incident)
Oh no, it's deeper than that. You know, we're still out here fighting hard, and I'm with my teammates no matter what. I just have to control my emotions in that situation. You know, words don't hurt you. He didn't put his hands on me, and I shouldn't have put my hands on him.
(on what Jets QB Geno Smith said that led to the skirmish)
What he said is between me and him. Just personal, between me and him.
(on penalties hurting the Titans)
We've been harping that all season, that penalties are the biggest thing. For me, being a captain out there, to hurt my team in that situation, I'm pretty much down on myself. You know, my teammates look up to me to be out there and be their leader. And I can't slip up on that.
LB WESLEY WOODYARD **
(on the unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on him)
Like I said, he caught the ball, fell on the ground, I stood over by him and he got up and pushed me … I definitely feel like that's on me. We ran and were getting off the field, and the penalty gets thrown on me and they were able to keep the drive going. So I definitely will take the blame for it.
(on if the referee gave him an explanation)
No. He just said 'You, 59.' I feel pretty bad. I cost my team that game, right or wrong. Did anything, or didn't do anything, still it's on me.
(on how tough a break it is to be whistled for something he didn't do)
It's tough, you know. It's tough. It is what it is.
(on if he said anything to cause the penalty)
No, I didn't say anything. I stood up and (Eric) Decker got up, and I don't know what to say after that. Can't really say anything.
(on if he thinks he deserved a penalty)
Absolutely not. I didn't say anything. I didn't provoke him to do anything. I really can't say much. It's just something that was called. I feel like I cost my team the play, even though I didn't do anything. Didn't do anything, didn't say anything. I got pushed in the face.
(on the Titans losing another close game at the end) **
The good thing is, man, we're still fighting. Obviously this year hasn't been going the way we wanted it to, but we're still going to keep fighting. Still going to keep pushing to get this thing overturned.
TE DELANIE WALKER**
(on the last play of the game)
It's just a play where we've got guys that can handle the ball. We take out all of the offensive linemen, except the center. It's a play where just try to pitch it back as much as we can until we get an opening and try to score.
(on if he felt he was going to score on the last play of the game)
I thought I could make it. They were in prevent (defense) so they had a couple of guys back. I thought I was going to get there, but when you have three guys sitting back there it's a hard decision to make. Looking back on it, I probably should have stayed up the middle, but it's a crucial moment and I was just trying to make a play at the end of the game.
(on whether or not the losses get worse)
I guess they get worse, especially when you're losing to teams that I feel like we're better than. When you lose to teams like that, it's kind of disappointing.
(on the injuries to the Titans quarterbacks)
We don't have the genie this year. We can't make wishes to keep our quarterbacks not injured. Today, Jake (Locker) took a big hit and he was out of the game. Charlie (Whitehurst) came in and I feel like he did a great job, but those are things we can't have.
RB DEXTER MCCLUSTER**
(on the Titans committing penalties)
It's very tough. I know it's an emotional game, but in certain situations, we definitely have to be pros about it and keep our cool. The penalties came back to haunt us a little bit, so we definitely have to keep our cool, know the situation and ultimately get the job done.
(on the on-field fight between the Titans and Jets in the third quarter)
It's been a tough situation, but at the end of the day, we have to be smart about our decisions. It's all about the team. You're out there fighting every down and words are exchanged, and it's a physical game so sometimes things do get out of hand, but you definitely have to be cool.
(on the Titans losing streak)
We haven't had the season that we wanted, but we still work hard in practice; we're just not reaping the fruits of our labor. It's very tough, and we have to put ourselves in better positions to win these games.
(on the last play of the game)
We work on that every week. It was one of those things, let's go out there and make a play and keep the ball alive. We got so close, and that's kind of how the season has been; we've been close in a lot of games, but we just couldn't finish it. But, we all fought today.
(on Titans DT Jurrell Casey inciting on-field fight)
He's a guy who comes to work every day ready to work. He motivates the offensive and defensive side. That was one of those things where things got heated and he reacted. He's a veteran and a leader and I'm pretty sure he's not going to do it again. He knows it's a mistake and we have to eliminate it next time.
I'm definitely ready to play. It's a short week; let's go back to work and try to get a win next week.
WR DEREK HAGAN
(on increased playing time)
It's just about making the most out of your opportunities, because you never know what's going to happen to any guy in this league. Anybody can go down at any time, and it's obviously always been the next man up. For me, even though I wasn't the starter earlier in the season, I always prepared myself as a starter because you have do that. Playing receiver, you pretty much have to know every position, and it's all about staying ready. I knew I had a job to do on special teams, and if they needed me on offense I was always going to be ready and that's basically what I'm doing now.
(on the last play of the game)
I thought (Delanie Walker) was going to score. Obviously, we have to go back and look at the film. We work on that play in practice, but it's never at full-speed like that. We're always just working on little things here and there. You don't know how that play's going to come up, what the defenders are going to do, or even if you're going to be able to lateral the ball. The good thing is that guys were in the right place where they're supposed to be, but we came up about 10 yards short. So, back to the drawing board we go. We know we have a quick one coming up Thursday so we need to flush this one after tonight and get back to work tomorrow. The season's not over; we know deep down that we want to win and we're fighting hard but they're just not coming.
QB JAKE LOCKER**
(on whether he will be available to play versus the Jaguars on Thursday night)
I have no idea, so we'll see.
(on whether he asks himself why injuries continue to happen to him)
No, I don't. I have too many good things, too many blessings in my life to get upset about a few little things like this. Obviously, it's frustrating; it's not easy to deal with, but I truly do feel that way.
(on how his shoulder feels)
It's a little painful. I get a chance to go in tomorrow and get a better idea about where it's at.
(on the frustration level within the Titans locker room)
It's not easy. We're not in a great spot right now. Everybody in here's a competitor and wants to win, so it's not easy.
(on the bad snap in the first quarter when the Titans lost 16 yards on first-and-goal)
You have to take advantage of opportunities when you have them, and we just didn't do enough of that today.
(on what happened on the play he was injured)
They brought two guys off that edge, and we got the ball out. It wasn't anything on them. They ran the protection just like they should. We beat the blitz with the throw, but it was just the way I fell I guess. It was awkward.
QB CHARLIE WHITEHURST**
(on the team's overall performance)
We were close, down to one play. It was a close game for us. It's frustrating, we're all frustrated, myself included.
(on the drive that turned over the game on downs in the fourth quarter)
It was kind of desperation on the last two, getting pressured a little bit trying to extend the play. I would have liked to have thrown it a little more accurately, but that's the way it goes.
(on the challenge of stepping into the game after Jake Locker's injury)
There are back-ups in every position, you go in there doing the best you can hoping for a chance, but we didn't make enough plays.
(on the plan for the final play)
Obviously, we wanted to score a touchdown, and we had a chance there. A lot of times when you run that play, you don't even get within striking distance. We had a chance with a lateral play to make something happen and we got pretty close.
(on his thoughts about Locker's injury)
It's tough. I hope he's all right. It's kind of bad luck.
(on whether or not Whitehurst is ready to assume Locker's role for the next game if needed)
I'm preparing for that. I don't know how bad it is. I hope for him and I hope for us that it's not too bad, but I'm preparing to have to go.
HEAD COACH REX RYAN
I thought they were going to get another forward lateral. I can't believe they still played it. But anyway, we will take the victory. The hard work that this football team, the preparation, all that on the practice field, in the classroom, all that has finally paid off. We've got heart, there's no questing about that, it's been tough sledding. I tip my hat to Tennessee, they were playing great on defense. We stayed the course. It was tough sledding in the running game but finally it was a big run that kind of busted that thing open for us. It's just great to get a win. Percy (Harvin) came to me on that kickoff and he wanted to return and I'm like, 'Yeah I want to win, so get back there.' He did a great job on it. I'm proud of our guys, we stayed together and it certainly wasn't easy, but I'm happy with the victory.
(on leadership )
Obviously it's your job and all that stuff but it's more than that. I've been saying it forever. We just haven't gotten any wins. Shoot, I wanted it as much for our players, more so for our players, as I did for myself. That's a lie, isn't it? I wanted it for myself first and I wanted it for our players because I know the kind of workers they are and they have been together regardless of who tries to pull them apart with some article or whatever says this or that. You guys know better, you guys have seen it. You know how close this team is. We just haven't found a way to win, but today we did and I am awful proud of them. This is the first time we beat Tennessee since I've been a head coach here so it feels good.
(on the message to Jets fans wanting a high draft pick)
Tough. You know, a real Jets fan wants to win. It doesn't matter what pick you get or whatever. If it were Peyton Manning out there I could understand it but I don't think Peyton Manning is out there. But either way, you know what, we are going to fight every game. We are going to fight next week too against New England and we're looking forward to it. Jets fans want to win. Are you kidding me? We have only got two of them. So I am sure they are happy with it and for those who just want a draft pick or whatever, well they really don't understand the heart of players in the locker room and really that doesn't sound like a Jets fan to me. A Jets fan is a tough guy and wants to win and that's what we gave our true Jets fans today.
(on the game's final play)
Well that's what I thought. It looked like a forward pass to me and it should have been blown dead right there, instead they make a guy tackle. Thank goodness no one got injured on that play. You know where at the end of it you extend a play like that you get injured on, when it's clearly, it looked like a forward lateral, my angle may have been obstructed but I have seen people get injured on plays like that and you want to see it blown dead. It must have been a good pass or something like that. I think we gave up an 80-yard play there, so that's good for the statistics.
(on Geno Smith's performance without a turnover)
He played extremely well. You have got to give him credit, it was tough. I thought Geno (Smith) was poised and made some great plays.
(on QB Geno Smith taking a punch in the third quarter)
He can take a punch, you know, I think that's good. I don't know what happened there. It looked like he got punched in the face. That's what it looked like from my vantage point. But, apparently he didn't get hit.
(on Titans loading the box in the first half)
Yeah, they do that. They do a great job. Ray Horton's the coordinator there and he does a good job. I've gone against him a long time and, you know, it's a tough team to prepare for. They give you all kinds of stuff and you can see their pride, too. They're playing at home. They know what they're ranking on run-defense, but they certainly didn't play like it today.
(on the design of play that led to RB C.J. Johnson's long run)
Well, great job by our guys putting that in there. It's a little wrinkle that we do from time to time and it was a great time to call that particular play. You've got to give Marty (Mornhinweg) credit for calling that play when he did.
(on C Nick Mangold)
Well, I think he was in there for the touchdown, so hopefully he's alright. I think it was a finger. I tell you what, being a center and coming into that situation and you've got to step in there and the first one, I think, is a direct snap, but Dalton Freeman stepped in there like a Clemson Tiger would and I'm proud of him.
(on whether players rushing the field after QB Geno Smith was punched is the right reaction)
I'm not going to say that I want that because that would be a fineable offense or whatever, but having your quarterback getting punched in the face or what looked like a punch in the face, sometimes something like that happens. But you want to keep your players on the sideline. I clearly have to do a better job of that.
(on whether someone should have been ejected following skirmish on the field)
I don't know about that.
(on first 16-11 game in NFL history)
I'm proud of that fact. Last time we had a pillow fight, me and (Ken) Whisenhunt, nobody's going to watch those games. Last time, I think we won 7-6, so the scoring was way up when we played this time.
(on having a free Monday)
Yeah, absolutely. It's been a long time coming.
QB GENO SMITH
(on getting the win)
It feels good to get a win. Rex (Ryan's) birthday was yesterday and we wanted to win for him, and we did. We came out and we got a victory. This is for our team and this is for everyone in Jet Nation. It wasn't the prettiest win, but a win is a win.
(on what was going through his mind during the scuffle in the second half)
Immediately I just see my offensive linemen storming off the bench and obviously it escalated into something that we don't need it to. But the referees did a good job of getting guys back on the sideline and the game continuing on and it was a clean game from there on.
(on if he was surprised that the scuffle escalated)
Anytime that happens you are surprised. You don't expect those things to happen on the football field. Football is made to be played on the field and not that other nonsense. Obviously, it escalated. We never want that to happen and we don't go out there with those intentions. But like I said, the refs did a good job of getting guys back on their sideline and we were able to just go back and play a clean game and I think for the most part after that nothing else happened.
(on the team rallying around him as the scuffle was going on)
We are all a close-knit bunch. We are all tied by the hip. We will never back down from any battle. We believe in one another and we stand for one another. I think that resembles that. Obviously, we don't want that to happen. We don't want to get into fights or anything with other teams or other teammates, but it is good to see the guys come to my defense and continue to play hard after that.
(on if someone should have been ejected)
The powers at be will make those decisions. I can't make a call on it. Everyone has their own say on it and I think the referees did a good job of getting guys back to their sideline and the game continued and we were able to continue playing and nothing happened after that.
(on the safety)
The guy had a hold of me and I realized I was in the endzone. Chris Ivory was actually standing almost right in front of me, so I just tried to throw it close to his feet trying to get an incomplete pass. I think my knee may have touched the ground before I got the chance to do so.
WR PERCY HARVIN
(on getting his leg ready to play today)
I just got a lot of treatment throughout the week. Once I was able to put a little pressure on it I ran in Friday's practice and I did a little bit. It gave me confidence that I would be able to come out here and try to make some plays.
(on how the leg felt during the game)
It was cool. Sometimes it got a little sore on some of the cuts.
(on going to Rex Ryan late in the game wanting to return the kick)
I just felt like it was that point in the game. My ankle was pretty loose and we needed a play. So I just went up to him and asked him could I go back and he gave me the green light.
S CALVIN PRYOR
(on winning and not getting a better draft pick)
The object of the game is to try to win and that's what we are going to try to do. We can't worry about draft picks or anything like that. We have a season to focus on and we have two more games left and we are going to try to win them.
(on the last play of the game)
It was kind of scary. They pitched the ball back a couple of times and 82 (Delanie Walker) thought he had seen daylight but Dawan (Landry) did a great job to get him down on the group to win the game. It was kind of scary.
T BRENO GIACOMINI
(on the offensive line reacting to what started the scuffle)
I have done plenty of stupid stuff so I knew the key there is to pull off your own players or get their players off. Just try to separate whatever is happening.
G WILLIE COLON
(on if maybe the referee didn't see the punch during the scuffle)
They saw it. He said that he saw it. The ref said that he saw it but he said that he missed. I said that 'he didn't miss.' It was what it was.
(on this game)
It was a scrap match. They came to play and it took us a little bit to get going. Honestly, I thought that we started slow and I think that we picked up as the game went along. We stood together as a team and were able to come out of it.
(on draft position getting worse)
I care nothing about it. We are just trying to finish strong. I am proud to be playing next to the guys that I'm playing with and that's all I care about.
S DAWAN LANDRY
(on if they got fired up from the scuffle)
Our line is a bunch of big and physical, nasty guys. I think it riled them up a little bit. They went after the quarterback and we never back down from a challenge and it riled us up.
RB CHRIS JOHNSON
(on if he had revenge on his mind or any extra motivation playing his old team)
It was motivation but I just tried to block all of that out and focus on the New York Jets needing a win and focus on that and try to make plays.
(on if he is relieved to have the game over)
Yeah there is a little relief. Coming in here was a little weird coming into this locker room and being on the other side of the filed. It felt a little crazy but after I got into the game I just blocked all of that out.
(on if it was satisfying to have the big play that setup the touchdown)
They came in here trying to stop the run, running eight and sometimes nine guys in the box. Mike Griffin and George Wilson coming downhill at the snap of the ball, we knew that they wanted to stop the run and then it was in the fourth quarter when Eric Decker, getting that big pass across the middle and almost getting that touchdown kind of gave us a spark.
(on if this was emotional for the team after the fight)
It was emotional because we have been on a roller coaster ride all season so to come in here and get a victory was big for us.