Carson Palmer Media Session

On facing Jacksonville:"It's a must win game for us. We had a chance, Coach [Allen] had a chance to put all the standings and the records in the AFC up and show us where we stand. It's a good football team that plays really good on the road. They have the same record but they have been very successful on the road over the history of the last three years he showed us. We have to play good football. We get a chance to play in front of our fans. It feels like it has been a while with last week and the bye but it's a must win for us. It is an AFC game and an opportunity to start climbing our way back into this race."

On encouraging signs from the passing game last weekend: "We did some very good things and we did some things that we worked on today, cleaning up on, and things that we talked about in our offensive meetings and why bad things in the game happen and how we improve on those. Coming off a loss is always difficult after a bye but this team can't wait to play. We played on Sunday. It was an East Coast trip. We are back and this team is ready to go out and play again. It is only Wednesday and we have a lot of work to do before we get to Sunday, but we are excited about this opportunity and a chance to go out and put good football on film and get a win."

On all the receivers having the potential to be a factor: "We don't necessarily have a go-to guy, a number one receiver, so to speak. We have three or four number one receivers and then a number one tight end and a back on check downs who's sometimes number one. It's an offense that really spreads the ball out well. It makes it difficult to try to double team one guy or take one guy out of the game because a guy like Derek [Hagan] can come in from the sideline. He was on the sideline for most of the game, then in the fourth quarter he makes three or four plays in a row. Denarius [Moore] is going to get a lot of balls at the position he plays. Coach Knapp does such a good job of moving him around, motioning him around, and putting him in spots that are different from the previous week to really make it difficult to try and double-team him and take him out of the game. You've got DHB [Darrius Heyward-Bey] you've got to worry about, and obviously Brandon [Myers] has caught a lot of balls."

On connecting on long passes: "We just need to hit more. It's not that we need to take more. We had an opportunity to take one and we took it and hit it. In the Denver game, we threw a lot of deep balls, but we were down a number of scores so you're just kind of winging it and taking shots and trying to score too many points in one drive, is the way Coach Knapp likes to put it. We're going to take our shots, we're not going to be silly about them, and we're not going to force them. We have enough speed that the shots present themselves. For the most part, teams have, especially early in the year, really played back on us and turned and run in coverage. That's when Darren and Brandon become so valuable because their underneath route running skills are really good against deep coverages."

On whether hitting deep passes causes the defense to react differently later in the game: "You can get in guys' heads. It depends on the guy. I think that was on Dunta Robinson or, I'm not sure who that one was on, but with a young, inexperienced guy that gets hit early in the game with a deep ball, a lot of times that gets in their head and they just start turning and running for the hills. Guys that have a lot of confidence will come up and continue to play up in your face. It really depends on the guy."

On relationship with Denarius Moore: "It's been great. He's so coachable and just wants to do the right thing. He doesn't want to be the superstar. He doesn't need all the attention, just wants to play football. He loves the game, loves practice. Those guys are the best guys to play with. You enjoy it. It's a pleasure to come in and work on routes early on in practice when guys are stretching, and then when special teams are going, getting extra reps with him. He's obviously physically gifted. He can flat run by anybody in the league. He catches the ball extremely well, so he's the complete package."

On whether Moore is back to 100% after missing time in camp: "I think there's still some rust. I think he would say that too. That's more him being a humble person and saying, 'I've got to continue to work, and continue to improve.' There's still a little bit of rust, but for the most part he's going to continue to improve week after week after week. He's in year two. It's easy to forget that he's a second year guy. The sky's the limit for him. There's still a lot of room for improvement. He's not going to slack off. He's going to continue to work to get to where he needs to be."

On what RB Mike Goodson has brought to the offense: "I think versatility because he can run screens. He catches the ball really well out of the backfield. He can run between the tackles, obviously he showed that last week. He can pick up pass protection. He plays special teams. He's kind of just a team guy. He knows that this is Darren McFadden's running game. He knows that he's kind of the lead dog in that and understands his role. Any way he can help the team, like I said playing special teams. He'll play any special team you ask him to. He'll come in on third down. He'll carry the ball in short yardage. It doesn't matter; he just wants to be on the field. He just loves playing football."

On the key to executing a good screen pass: "I've run a lot of screens. I think it's all the play caller. It's the design, the deception of the screen, the timing of the screen, the field position, understanding the coordinator you're playing against, what coverages you might get in a certain field zone, what coverages you might get in a certain formation. Coach Knapp is so engrained in studying all that stuff, and really understands and picks his spots, and when to call them. You rarely see an unsuccessful screen with him. You rarely see one where the defense totally knew it was coming. A lot of times its total shock, total surprise, because he does such a good job of setting those screens up. Then you throw them to Goodson who runs 4.3 and McFadden. Brandon's caught a handful of them."

On tight ends catching screens: "Brandon's caught some. Marcel's [Reece] caught a couple of nice screens. A lot of teams run screens, but the way they're coached here and the way they're designed here is special."

On whether FB Marcel Reece is being used enough: "It's unfortunate; he's had a handful of plays called for him and it seems like all of them end up getting turned into the league. He had a deep corner route last week that was blatant PI [pass interference] that wasn't called. I was going to throw it to him, but I ended up having to throw to the checkdown because he was literally almost tackled coming out of his route. I kept feeling over this part of the season that every time his number is called we're turning the plays in because it wasn't called on the field by the referees. It comes back as it yeah, that should have been called as PI. He's gotten his opportunities the ball just hasn't bounced his way. We understand the weapon he is, and the defenses that play us understand the weapon he is. He's going to get his opportunities."

On whether his familiarity with Jacksonville Offensive Coordinator Bob Bratkowski can help the defense: "He's not afraid to call shots. He's not afraid to throw the ball down the field. When we were together, we had a lot of long balls thrown. We had a lot of success in the deep passing game. He understands the deep passing game and how to attack defenses and get the ball thrown over defenses' heads. He's also really good at protecting the quarterback. Being in the AFC North you play against the Pittsburghs and the Baltimores. You get a lot of funky blitzes and pressures, and he does a really good job of protecting the quarterback. We've got our work cut out for us this week to get to their quarterback. He does a really good job of not putting you in vulnerable positions where you have a seven-step drop and you're leaving your offensive linemen in one-on-one situations. He won't do that to guys. He does a good job setting up the run game, and when he has his opportunities to throw the ball down the field, he does a good job of max-protecting and getting guys out."

On what positives he can take from the loss last week at Atlanta: "Anytime you don't win a game, it's not a moral victory. I said it after the game; we weren't satisfied in any way. We weren't happy in any way. We wanted to win the game and we didn't. You've got to continue to work and continue to grind. You've got to believe in each other, believe in the game plan, and believe in the coaching. You look at the game film and you improve from it. That's really all you can do. We're not going to sit back and be happy about statistics. We're going to sit back and figure out why we didn't win, look at ways we can get better and try to improve."

On if there is a difference between a hard-fought loss and a blow-out loss: "A loss is a loss. I hate losing more than I like winning. It doesn't matter how many points you score. I've been in games where we've lost 52 to 49. That doesn't feel good either. This team looks at every opportunity we step on the field, we want to win. No matter what the score is, no matter what the statistics were, how close, how far we were, a loss is a loss. We're competitive. We want to win every time. We want to perform well every time. Obviously we haven't performed well in some losses. We just want to win."

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