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S Kevin Byard


(on the importance of winning at home against the Colts)

Huge. I mean, last year when we played them at home, we didn't play good enough especially going in the second half. It kind of got away from us, so really good. I think the defense, we really had a strong performance, strong performance. The offense turned the ball over three times, I am sure they don't want to. For the defense, we played good in the red zone and forced a lot of field goals and let them score only one touchdown, I think (that) was pretty strong. Still got a lot of stuff to clean up but definitely encouraging. We are 1-0 in the division so it's a great day.

(on how it felt for the defense to respond with a strong performance)

We take stuff like that personal. Obviously, we know we didn't play well last year. We knew coming into this year that was going to be the expectation. But I kind of understood how training camp goes, where some guys can't practice, (it) takes a little bit of time to jell a little bit, so defense is going to have to play good. So, it proved today. It's just one of those deals where it's about being complementary. When the offense is playing well, the defense has got to step up. That's just team football and that's what we believe in. So, like I said, that's a good win today.

(on opportunities for the defense to force turnovers)

Yeah, for sure. I mean, almost thought I had an interception at the end of the game, I was real close to it. It's one of those deals when we are on the sidelines we are always communicating, always talking. It doesn't really matter what the offense does. Of course, we want them to score points every time they get the ball, but we understand it's not going to happen. But when the defense gets a turnover, we have to go on the field, expect them, 'OK, what are we going to get?' Shots, screens, stuff like that. But we understand that just because they get a turnover, they got the ball, they don't have to score no matter where they get the ball at on the field. I am pretty proud of the defense on how we handled those turnovers.

(on the importance of getting pressure on the quarterback)

It was super important. That was one of our team keys, affecting the quarterback, getting in the pocket, forcing him to run or whatever or also mixing or disguising coverage, changing the looks on them. Like I said, I think we did pretty well, but still some stuff to clean up. Overall, I think we did pretty well today.

(on the type of game played today)

Both teams are built the same way. It's one of those deals where nobody is going to quit in the second half. We know it is going to be a four-quarter game and we talked about that at halftime and on the sideline. No matter what the score is, if we are up, if we are down, it's going to be to be a four-quarter game. I think the defense understood that and we did a pretty good job at the end with the two-minute drill. So, like I said man, it's great to get a win, great to be 1-0 in the division, and so we got to keep this thing rolling. We got the Jets up next.

(on if getting a home win over Indianapolis gets team over the hump)

No, I wouldn't say getting over the hump. I think it is just having a great gameplan first and foremost and just executing it. We understand what kind of team we are, especially at the end of that Seattle game, the second half. We kind of understood who we are and who are aren't. I think that we continue to plan to our strengths and kind of hide our weaknesses. If we don't give up big plays and make the team drive the ball, we feel like we can be pretty dominant. We just have to keep it going.

(on if it is nice to be ahead in the division)

Yeah, I mean it is good right now, but we understand it doesn't really matter. It is still early in the year. It's good to be 1-0, don't get me wrong. But at the end of the day, we have to keep piling on wins, keep piling on wins and just take each team as they come. Like I said, we've got the Jets coming up next and we have to prepare as hard as we can to go on the road and get a big win.

(on the difficulty of bouncing back from the Colts' 17-play drive)

Yeah, honestly, I think that was one of our, if not probably our worst drive of the game. Pretty disappointing not being able to get off the field on third-and-shorts. That's the big thing, we've got to stay out of those third-and-shorts, because honestly being the type of team they are, they are pretty good running the ball. We have to stay out of third-and-shorts to be able to get off the field. When we had third-and-longs, we were getting sacks, getting pressure, disguising coverage. We were able to do different things so if we can stay out of those third-and-shorts, I think we will be fine.

(on having several different players making contributions)

It's huge. We had some guys come in and play some big-time ball. We just talked about big time, we just celebrated with Breon (Borders). Kristian (Fulton) goes down, comes into the game and makes two big plays forcing a field goal in the red zone. It's huge, you never know when you are going to get your number called. Dane (Cruikshank) got his first start today, played pretty well. It's just something we believe in, you know? Any time we prepare throughout the week, we tell everybody even if you are on the practice squad you have to prepare like a starter because you never know when your number is going to get called.

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