WR Darrius Heyward-Bey catches QB Terrelle Pryor's first career TD pass. Photo by Tony Gonzales
Head Coach Dennis Allen
On Tony Bergstrom playing guard instead of tackle: "He'd been working both actually and we wanted to get Tony in there and see what he could do. We also worked Lucas Nix in there so both those guys got in there and got a chance to play right guard, which was good for two young guys that we feel good about moving forward."
On how Bergstrom and Nix played: "I thought they did a nice job. Without really seeing the tape it's hard to totally evaluate. I thought we did a nice job with protection up front. But we'll evaluate the tape and have a better feel for how they did."
On QB Terrelle Pryor's play: "I thought he did some good things. Obviously, I thought there was still some work that needs to be done there. He obviously provided a little spark, so I think that's something to build on."
On why LB Rolando McClain was inactive: "It just was an issue where we felt like we wanted to go with some other guys. Injuries and things of that nature didn't lend it to putting him in the game."
On if there was anything that surprised him about Pryor: "Obviously the athleticism was good. I think at times he threw the ball really well. I think there was a few accuracy issues he could have been better on. I would have liked to see him get out of bounds there right before the half to give us an opportunity to try a long field goal with Seabass [Sebastian Janikowski]. But then again, he made some plays – the scramble there late in the game and hitting Denarius Moore in the back of the end zone. That was a heck of a football play. With Terrelle, with any young quarterback, you take a little bit of the good with the bad, but overall, not bad."
On if playing in this game will help the coaches and Pryor heading into the off-season: "Yeah, I think we got a little bit more of a feel, once you actually get him into a game, where he's at. Just like we will with everybody, we'll look at that and we'll evaluate where we're at from a team standpoint as we go into the off-season."
On the team battling back in the 4th quarter: "I think it says a lot about some of the guys that are in that locker room. There's no quit in these guys. They continue to fight. We didn't get the results we were looking for this year, but our guys continued to fight, continued to compete and we gave ourselves an opportunity and a chance in this game. We just didn't get it done."
On giving up a kickoff return touchdown on the first play of the game: "Obviously, it doesn't start the momentum in your favor, but I thought we came back and really, at the end of the day, with the exception of how the game started, I thought we came back and played well in the game. We just didn't make enough of the plays that we needed to make to win the football game."
On the Chargers nine and a half minute drive: "Obviously we helped them out in a couple regards. I think they executed the fake punt well and then we had a couple offsides penalties, which kept drives moving along. We've got to make teams beat us and not have those self-inflicted wounds. But I thought they did a nice job on that drive. I thought really defensively, with exception of that drive, I thought we played well, but that was one drive where they were really able to move the ball down the field and get a touchdown on us."
On his ability during the season to change the culture of the Raiders: "I think we've made progress in that regard. I don't think we're the finished product yet, but I do think we've made some progress in that regard."
On making the culture the finished product: "We have to continue to do the same things that we're doing and the same things that we believe in. We have to make sure we continue to try to get the right people. We're looking for guys that love football, that are willing to work and that want to put the team first and those are the type of guys that we're looking for. We're going to find as many of those guys as we can and we'll go into battle with them anytime we can."
On the guard rotation between Bergstrom and Nix: "Because we like Lucas Nix. He's a guy that we've been watching as the year's gone on and again, it's one of those opportunities in this last game that we wanted to see him get into the game so we would have an evaluation of him in a real NFL game going into the off-season. Without looking at the tape, I thought both of them did fairly well."
On specific needs in the off-season: "We've got to evaluate that. We just finished the game just now, so we're going to sit down, Reggie and myself, and really we're going to evaluate everything within the organization."
On Pryor's passes that a receiver got a hand on but wasn't able to catch: "Well, players have to make plays. Quarterback has to put it in the right spot and sometimes the quarterback has to help the receiver out by throwing it away from coverage. Sometimes the receiver has to help the quarterback out and we've got to find ways to make those plays, whether it be catching the ball or whether it be putting the ball on target. At the end of the day, we've got to make those plays when we get an opportunity."
On Pryor's play-making ability: "We've seen a lot of that in practice, but obviously from a positive standpoint, the athleticism that he brings at the quarterback position helped us in a few instances in this game. He's a competitor. He kept competing and, at the end of the day, we get the touchdown there and got a chance for an onside kick, get a chance to potentially go down and kick the game-tying field goal or win the football game."
On Pryor getting in and out of the huddle: "There was a few issues, but overall I thought it was all right. Overall, I thought it was all right. I think that was a good first step for him."
On the opinion that Pryor earned the chance to play next season: "I think he earned the chance for us to evaluate him some more and see where he's at. I thought that was a good first step in that direction."
On the ejection of RB Mike Goodson and Chargers LB Takeo Spikes: "I'm not sure exactly I know why they were ejected. Really they both had each other's facemasks and he was trying to break it up and they just didn't break up. The thing we have to understand, and I've said this before and I'll continue to say this - somebody asked me earlier about changing the culture, we're not there yet – but we can't hurt our football team. I don't care what happens, we can't hurt our football team. Those are mistakes that we have to learn from and we have to get better."
On Pryor pulling Goodson from the altercation: "I thought he did a nice job trying to get Goody [Goodson] out of there. I think he understood what the situation was and that we can't hurt our team there, but unfortunately the damage was done."
On what Pryor can take from the game: "I think he looks at it and sees where he needs to improve. There's obviously still a lot of room for improvement, but there was some positive things that he did in the game that he has to learn from those and move forward with those and try to enhance those."
On the change in the Raiders defense over the last few weeks: "I thought our guys really completed extremely hard. I thought they played the right way. I thought they got off of blocks and they played with the right type of attitude. What we have to do is that momentum that we've gained defensively throughout the end of the year, we've got to carry that forward into the off-season, understand the things that we did well, which allowed us to play better defense at the end of the year and enhance those things. And then understand as you look at that middle part of the year where we fell short and learn from those lessons so we don't repeat those."
QB Terrelle Pryor
On the final moments of the game: "Fantastic. These guys just keep fighting like they did all year. I know that it didn't go the way that we wanted, but guys kept on digging, they kept on fighting and scratching. That's what you want to see on a football team. And it tells you about the future, whether certain people are going to be here or whatever the case maybe, you have fighters in the room. When I saw that punt get blocked I thought, 'we're going to win this game.' It didn't go that way, but I commend everyone for not stopping."
On if he felt like a leader during the game: "I did feel like a leader on the field. But I have to get to where when I miss a throw, I just go on to the next play. I think that it carried over a couple of times with me and I can't let that happen. I have to be a professional and a leader of the group. I wasn't on a couple of plays and I admit that. Hopefully I can improve on that."
On the playing conditions: "Every time the call came up, the ball was muddy. But that's football. I can't complain about it. The thing about the weather is that you have to perform. But I had a blast with my teammates. It looked like the guys believed in me. We moved the ball decent, not the greatest, but I'm very upset with myself and some of the mistakes I made and the throws I missed. But that happens and I look forward to possibly playing next year and getting better, that's it."
On the throw to WR Rod Streater: "We knew that (Quentin) Jammer would jump some routes and I thought that we should have gotten a flag on DeMo (Demorrio Williams). So I held the safety, I believe it was 41 back there. I threw a perfect ball and Streater was there."
On his ability to scramble: "I think that with me being young, it helps me out being able to scramble. The stuff is going to slow down for me. Like I've told you guys before, I will be great at the quarterback position and I just have to let things slow down for me. I have to be calm, be a leader and get to the next play. If I do that, watch out for us. But I don't want to compare myself to Rich Gannon because he's one of the best quarterbacks I've ever seen."
On what he said to Goodson when he pulled him out of the altercation: "I love Mike Goodson, that's my guy. He's one of my very good friends and I know that I slammed him, but you can't do that. We were about to score. It's very hard to get down there and score in the NFL and if we're down there, what if we get a 15-yard penalty? I told Mike that he needed to be the bigger man. Last year we had what, 168 penalties for I don't know how many yards and we have to be the bigger guy when scuffles like that happen. I got caught up and I have to apologize for throwing him, but it's just me being a leader and trying to get him off. I don't think that I handled it the right way, but I'm a feisty guy."
On if playing in this game makes him want to play even more: "I had a great time out there. Like I said, there were a lot of throws that I wish I had back, but I'm going to walk out with my chin up. I know what I need to work on. I need to work on my stiff wrist, throwing it down the seam, so I'm going to hammer that home very, very hard. I just have to get better. From watching film, I know what I have to work on, so I'm going to hit on that and see what happens."
On knowledge gained from the game: "I got my feet wet a little bit and just the thought of me being on the field with Darren McFadden, who is one of my favorite players growing up, and seeing how he's a leader, how he runs the ball, I won't trade this for anything. I just love this game very much and I'm very sad that we lost. I apologize and I put it on my shoulders. I study a lot and coach (Greg) Knapp is great at that. There were some great calls today, I just have to go in there and get it done. I don't recall any delay of game penalties. We were in and out of the huddle fast. I just have to watch the film and critique myself to see what I need to get better at."
RB Darren McFadden
On the team dealing with so many changes this season: "I feel like a lot of guys took it in stride and we kept going but we didn't get the ball to bounce our way."
On moving forward: "We just need to keep working and grinding. We had some good glimpses here and there but we need to work together and be more consistent."
On this being a frustrating season: "We can't think about it anymore because the season is over with now and we're already looking forward to next year."
WR Darrius Heyward-Bey
On how QB Terrelle Pryor handled his first start: "He did a great job in the huddle. He kept everyone in line, called the plays right and executed. He made some plays out there and a few mistakes but he's new and will get that right."
On catching Pryor's first NFL touchdown pass: "He just called the play in the huddle so I knew he was going to throw it up to me. I went up there and made the play for him. It was good to get his first touchdown out of the way so we could move on."
DE Lamarr Houston
On the defense: "We played great team defense today. Everyone was doing their responsibility. Everyone was doing their jobs. Luckily I was there to finish. I like to thank god, the people that pray for me, and keeping me in their prayers. I am happy we came out healthy this year. I wish we could have had a better season and things would have played different but it didn't. We have to start building for next year. It is no time to look in the past. It is time to take the next step forward."
On the fourth quarter comeback: "It shows we have a lot of fight. It shows these guys do not quit. The men in this room will battle and battle until the clock strikes zero. We came up a few possessions short today."