WR Andre Holmes makes a leaping catch. Photo by Tony Gonzales
Head Coach Dennis Allen
On the game: "All right guys, injury update on guys that weren't able to finish the game – Mike Brisiel left early in the game with a knee, Rashad Jennings with a concussion there late in the game, Usama Young with a stinger, Kaluka Maiava with a calf and Mike Jenkins with a stinger. So obviously disappointed in the loss. We started out fast; we just couldn't hold up. The momentum change there at the end of the first half when they were able to get down the field and get the touchdown there at the end of the first half and then really, the second half, we wore down defensively. We couldn't stop them from running the football. They were able to possess the ball so therefore we didn't have very many opportunities on offense to really get much going. When we did, we weren't really able to take advantage of it. Really, the game boiled down to the second half, we wore down, they were able to run the ball, and we weren't able to get off the field."
On the Cowboys success in the run game: "That's something we had done a good job of throughout the year, but obviously, and I think a short week after playing 82 plays the week before, our guys are beat up; our guys are banged up. It wasn't from a lack of effort. It wasn't from a lack of trying. They blocked us and we struggled tackling in the second half of the football game and therefore we weren't able to stop them."
On the last drive of the first half: "Listen, they made a couple plays. They hit us on a seam pass where we had pretty good coverage, but they made a play. On the third down play, Tracy [Porter] got beat on Dez Bryant; he made a good play. I don't think it was anything that was different. We didn't call the game any differently. We still stayed aggressive. We still did the things we had done up until the first half, but this offense has been able to move the football and they've been able to score some points. They were able to do it and get points there at the end of the first half and I thought there was a big momentum boost for them."
On reason for inability to finish games: "I just think it's guys being able to hang in there and being able to make the plays when they get those opportunities. Obviously, today, I felt like we just got worn down. We had a lot of guys in and out of the lineup with various injuries and stuff. That's not an excuse; it just is what it is. We weren't able to stop the run."
On Andre Holmes stepping up: "That was nice to see that he steps up and makes a few plays down the field, some big catches down on the sideline. We made some explosive plays. I think the biggest thing is we just didn't have very many opportunities in the second half because Dallas was able to possess the ball."
On making mid-game adjustments when team is worn down and depth is an issue: "That's a challenge. It's a challenge and, listen, we made a lot of adjustments. I mean, we called everything we had in the playbook. They were able to block us and we weren't able to tackle as well as we needed to so therefore they were able to keep the ball."
On learning how to win on the road: "Yeah, there's something to be learned about how to win on the road and that's something we're going to continue to work. I don't think this was a situation where guys made mistakes. I think it was a situation where they beat us in certain areas. They blocked us better and we weren't able to tackle like we needed to. That's really what that boils down to."
On Matt McGloin's interception: "I'll look at the tape and see exactly what he saw, but obviously you can't throw the interception in that situation and so that'll be something he'll have to learn from."
On the Cowboys second-half defense: "No it didn't look they changed a whole lot. They were kind of loading the box up a little bit trying to stop the run, so therefore we were able to get a few plays in the passing game. Still think there was more plays there that we could have made, but obviously, we didn't have, like I said, a lot of time of possession. I don't know what the time of possession was in the second half, but it seemed like they had the ball for most of the half."
On McGloin: "I don't know if he's played as well as he did in some of the previous weeks, but I still thought he did some good things. I still thought he was able to throw the football. We were able to get the ball down the field some, so I'll save the final evaluation until I get a chance to look at the tape. But overall, obviously a couple mistakes in the game, but I wouldn't say it was a poor performance."
On Jennings taking wildcat snaps over [QB Terrelle] Pryor: "Some of the types of plays we would run with Terrelle are different than the types of plays we would run with Rashad Jennings or Darren [McFadden]. Darren was taking those snaps earlier in the year. That's just part of what we've done with our offense. And again, we've got packages of plays and we've got different things to try to get Terrelle involved. There was a point there in the first half where we almost had a couple of those plays up. We didn't do it, but offensively we had 21 points in the first half. And then again, like I said, in the second half there just wasn't a whole lot of opportunities."
On Jared Veldheer and McFadden: "Well, again, I'll look at the tape to really get a true evaluation, but just off the hoof, I thought both of them did pretty well."
On if Lucas Nix was put into the game because of Andre Gurode's play: "I think part of it was just trying to get Nix in the game. I don't know if that was a reflection on Andre or not, but our plan was all game long at some point to have Nix in the game."
QB Matt McGloin
On struggles in 2nd half: "Obviously anytime you're off the field for long periods of time, momentum kind of swings the other way and things like that. You don't want to make excuses. Obviously, it's an area we have to get better at, whether it be just staying loose or continuing to communicate on the sidelines better and anything like that just to try to fix the problem. I'm sure that we have no doubt that we'll find a way to get it done."
On his interception: "It was an opportunity ball. A lot of times I try to give my guy a shot, but I probably should have threw it better, either back shoulder ball or just an overall better all. Their guy gets paid too. He made a good play, but that one's on me."
On throwing the intercepted ball towards Jacoby Ford instead of finding Andre Holmes: "Anytime there's an interception, a million things go through your mind. You rethink it. I mean, if it was a touchdown, nobody would have thought anything about it. But it happens and you learn from it and you gain experience from it. Like I said, bad decision by me and no doubt that I'll try to fix it."
On difference between 1st and 2nd half: "Why were we successful [in the 1st half]? We had a lot of momentum. Things were clicking. We were on the field for a while. We had some really long drives, I think. We were putting drives together, putting plays together. Unfortunately the second half we couldn't stay out there. Things weren't clicking. You can't win when that happens."
On success with Holmes: "He's a guy…I definitely trust him. He's a good player. He works hard. He goes about his business day in and day out. He's a guy that'll go and get the ball for you. Definitely a guy I look for to try to get the ball to because he does good things when he gets the ball in his hands."
On the fumbled snap: "It's one of those rare things that happens. It was a mistake. I couldn't tell you the last time a snap had been fumbled between Wiz [Stefen Wisniewski] and I. I don't even remember one at Penn State. That was just a freak thing. We both couldn't believe it happened. We'll fix it. We'll get more snaps in if we have to, to make sure that won't happen again."
On if players were worn out: "At this point, everybody is tired, even Dallas I'm sure. But you have to fight through it. You have to push through it. That's why you condition, you work out throughout the season, staying in shape. That's no excuse. That's stuff you have to fight through."
WR Greg Jenkins
On his touchdown: "First play on kickoff coverage, one of the guys stripped the ball out and my natural reaction was just to scoop and score. I was just trying to make a play for the team…anytime you can make plays like that on the opening play of the game, it builds momentum…I just saw the ball out and my natural reaction was to scoop and score."
On punt returns: "I feel like I made a few plays, but I expect more out of myself. So, I've got to get back to the drawing board."
On the game: "Ultimately, it's a team game. We lost, so it's a sour taste in my mouth. I want to make plays for the guys and put us position to win."
WR Rod Streater
On the offense: "We didn't really have a lot of opportunities to come back out and move the ball. As you've seen, we can move the ball effective when we have an opportunity. We just didn't make enough plays to beat the Cowboys."
On finishing the game: "We have to learn how to come out and finish the second half when we go into halftime with a lead. We have to find a way to finish through the fourth quarter."
WR Andre Holmes
On chemistry with the QB: "Just the time that I've been here with all the quarterbacks, I feel like we all have a good rapport. I feel like we have a good connection. There wasn't anything different this week coming into the game."
On the interception: "The look could have been that Jacoby was open. I'm not going to comment that it should have come to me or anything like that. It's just one of those plays that happens every game where sometimes the other team makes a play on it."
On the game: "I felt good. If I had a calendar, I checked (this day) because I wanted to come here and play well in front of a team I had played for. It just sucks that we didn't get the win…A lot of the guys came over and said good job. It felt good."
On the team: "The defense has trust in offense. The offense has trust in defense. There wasn't anything like 'aw, here we go'. We have to trust in each other."
On the short week: "It just felt like a regular week. For me, it didn't come into my mind that was a short week and we're not prepared."
On the long break: "It's nice, especially for our guys that are banged up. We'll be able to rest. It's almost like a mini-bye week. That will be really nice for us."
LB Kevin Burnett
On the second half: "We had 'em. We would hit them in the backfield. We just could not get them down. That starts with everyone. We have to wrap them up and play to the whistle. Get them to the ground."
On where the game turned: "Me missing a tackle on third down. I have to be a better tackler, to understand where my help is. And get them on the ground. Period."
On the explanations for how they fell behind: "You can make up anything you want to. The excuses are everywhere. You don't have to look hard for them. I'm not going to make any excuses. Starting with myself. You have to play better when your number is called. When your number is called, make the tackles. You have to find a way. The ways don't make themselves. You have to find them. Once you find a way, you have to make the play."
On how to move forward from this game: "I don't know where you can say you are making those plays come from. It is one of those things, as a player, you either have it or you don't. There is no in between."
On creating a culture of winning: "We have to execute. We have to execute what is called. We have to play our game plan. We have to understand what is called upon us to do as players."
On the shifting tides from the first to the second half: "It is only one half of football. Great teams adjust. We didn't adjust when we had to. It is nothing that can be coached. The coaches put us in perfect plays, and we didn't tackle. That's what it boils down to. We didn't tackle. We would hit them in the backfield. We had six guys around them, and we let them go. That starts with myself, and getting those off on third down. And everybody has to be accountable. It is what it is at this point."
LB Nick Roach
On whether the defense wore down in the second half: "I don't think we wore down, its just that we didn't do things right when we needed to. I wouldn't go so far as to say we were more tired than usual. We had a good week of preparation. I think it is just a matter of execution like it usually is."
On what lessons they can take from this game: "There is nothing different than any other week. You can watch the film. See what you did wrong, what you did well. You learn from the good things and the bad things alike, and you just try not to repeat the same mistakes."
CB Mike Jenkins
On not closing out in the second half: "It is a little frustrating. It is one of those things we definitely have to fix. We waited a little late to get that started, to try to get that going. It is one those things we have to capitalize on. We have to fix it. We can't keep letting it happen. It seems like we come out every game, first half we come out and put up numbers. We play ball. We just need to learn how to finish."
On their performance: "We don't finish. Guys play better ball than us at the end of the game. That is just one of those situations that we have to capitalize on. We have to manage it; we have to get it corrected."
On whether the defense wore down in the second half: "It looked like it. I was out, I watched the second half. It looked a little bit tired out there. I don't know what it was. It could have been the short week. That is one of those situations we can – us as a whole – we can correct. We need to get it done. Hopefully we can get it done before the end of the season and it can carry over to next season. We just have to correct it."