Dolphins Post-Game Quotes (01/04)

BALTIMORE RAVENS

HEAD COACH JOHN HARBAUGH

On how the Ravens played:"I would like to congratulate our football team, Joe Flacco obviously, who's a rookie playing in his first playoff game, which is a great accomplishment. Our football team, I'd like to congratulate our football team; that was a team victory. All three phases – the front end, offensively, and the back end; the front end, defensively, and the back end. The special teams were just dominant. We're proud of a team victory."

On the thanking the fans in stands after the victory: "Well I guess we just wanted to let them know, I mean it's a long trip down here, and we knew how hard it was to get down here. I bet some fans just have to get right back in their cars and drive back to Maryland. We're so proud of the fact that they were here; they were loud, we could hear them, and it made a difference. I will say this, running down that field down there I got winded; it is hot. Our guys fought through the heat and did a great job."

On Joe Flacco:"I think Joe played like a veteran. He played like a veteran in the playoffs. He made some tremendous throws, was very poised in the pocket, I thought our offensive line did a great job at protecting him and they allowed him to hold the ball which he was willing to do. He didn't get antsy in their at all, he made some really good throws, managed the game well, and didn't turn it over at all which is big. He played playoff winning football."

On the Dolphins:"It's interesting because they did some good things against us, especially in the second half. That's a very opportunistic offense, a very talented offense, with a great quarterback. They are very physical up front, and they found a way to move the ball on our defense in the second half. But our defense, I was so proud of the fact, not only did they come up with the turnovers, which nobody does against this offense and this quarterback, when it got hot and they got a little bit tired, the stood up and kept in the game. While we're talking about the Dolphins, congratulations to them on their season, Coach Parcells, Coach Sparano, right through their whole football team. What they've done is a tremendous accomplishment, and we take our hats off to them."

On Ed Reed: "No one's surprised the way Ed Reed plays. He's maybe the best player in the game. You can certainly make and argument for it, and we're a little bias, so we'll probably make that argument. Put him next to Ray Lewis and we'll say they're the two best in the game. We're real proud of Ed Reed."

On the defense preparing to cause turnovers: "I think when you talk to Rex (Ryan) you're going to find out that exactly what he did. That's part of our plan. That's part of our plan every week, that's what we want to do, we want to be that kind of a defense. A tenacious, aggressive defense, that turns the ball over. So it doesn't matter who we're playing, we're not going to say because we're playing a team that leads the league in ball security that we're not going to get them. We feel we can get anybody."

On facing Kerry Collins next week: "Well you know he's a veteran quarterback. We played him way back when, when he was with the Giants. He's better than he's ever been in his career, not because of the fact that he doesn't turn the ball over, but he makes throws. He stands in the pocket, he's very courageous, and obviously they're a great football team."

On Ed Reed transforming from defense to offense: "I think score. I think that's what everyone thinks. I'm sure that's what goes through the opponents minds as well, because he can put it in the end zone."

On the game:"It was great, the way we came together. We went down there and converted on our defensive turnovers to get a touchdown and make it 20 points. That was a big score for us to make sure it was a touch down and not a field goal again. Our defense gave us a lot of chances today and we did a good enough job converting on them."

On how it is being a rookie quarterback a defense that is number three: "It is awesome, but they have been doing it all year. You kind of sit on the sideline and that's what you expect. You get used to it."

On how they managed the game today: "I'm not going out there and trying to just manage the football, I am going out there and trying to make plays. There were a handful of throwaways we had to do today, and we had a couple where we had them beat deep and we missed them at the end of the game. We didn't connect there, but we will make sure to connect in the future. We feel really good about how we played as an offensive football unit today. We moved the ball early on, and kind of killed ourselves with some penalties and things like that, but we will get that cleaned up and be ready for next week.

On bouncing back after the early turnover: "You have to overcome those things if you want to be a playoff team, and win playoff games. It is going to happen. You just have to put your head down and move on to the next play."

On his touchdown play: "It was a quarterback draw. I wanted tog o back there and make it look like a pass, and the linemen did a great job of getting on their blocks and opening up a hole for me."

On Willis McGahee's run: "That was awesome. It was kind of like Dallas all over again. He kind of busted through and they were bringing up everyone in the box, and as soon as you bust through the first line, there is nobody left back there. So, he did a great job of almost getting to the end zone."

On getting ready to face Tenenessee's defense: "They have played well all year. They have a bunch of veterans, they know how to play the game. They have been in this situation before. We have played them earlier this season, and we are a ready to get back down there and play them again in their house."

On if this game feels the same as any other game: "It was pretty much the same. Miami has a great environment. Miami had a bunch of people here, and the Baltimore Ravens traveled a bunch of people to come down and watch the game. Beside the great environment it was just another football game, we are kind of used to that environment at home."

On petitioning to have Ed Reed playing on offense after his return: "I don't know. He is definitely a great receiver and is definitely a great runner with the football, but we have our guys on our side of the ball that have been doing a great job for us all year."

On the roll Ed Reed is on: "At this point we kind of expect it. We are spoiled. You see him catch the ball and you are like, not again. He takes it to the end zone almost every time."

On how comfortable he is on offense knowing he has a defense that is making plays: "That's their job to go out there and stop them, and it is our job no matter how we get the ball play to go out there and put points on the board. Anytime we get that many chances because of them it is good for us. But, we go out there and put points on the board and let them worry about their job."

On the win considering their history: "Definitely, it is awesome to go anywhere and get a playoff win, and that's what we did today. We are a family; we are playing for each other. We want to make everyone feel really good. I have been saying all along, this is one playoff win. We still need to get three more, and we all have the confidence to go out there and do it."

WR MARK CLAYTON

On Ed Reed's interception return for a touchdown:"League MVP, league MVP no doubt, MVP or whatever you want to call it. He deserves all of the accolades. Ed is such a good guy and he really knows the game. With the things he does, nothing really surprises us."

On the offense coming together under Joe Flacco:"Coming in our quarterback situation was up in the air. Joe ended up being the front runner. Everyone could see Joe had great potential but we had to go through a maturation process. Learning together and growing together offensively. We have been able to do that. Each week we get a little bit better and this week will be no different. We are going to work hard and get a little bit better."

LB RAY LEWIS

On how it feels to get a road win here in Miami:"You know truly, God is just awesome and once you give everything to him, life kind of just takes care of itself. To come down and see this much family down here, ironically I had 52 tickets to get. The last two came in at the last minute, so that kind of completed the number. It's almost overwhelming to comeback where God actually started my journey years ago. For us to comeback as a team and do this, its kind of the same approach we've taken all year. Just take 60 minutes, forget who we are playing and just see if we can come out and play mistake free football. Now of course we made some mistakes, but we fought for 60 minutes. It's really heart felt and you really take your hat off to this team."

On winning the turnover battle:"It doesn't get any better. It doesn't get any better all the way across the board. Every man looks at each other to a man and asks a simple question, "Are you fighting for yourself or are you fighting for the man beside you?" and that's the beauty of this team as well as this defense. We fight for each other on this side. We heard all week about they don't turn the ball over, they don't turn the ball over, but bottom line, we force turnovers and that's the thing we did today. We did a great job getting after the ball. You take Ed Reed, you take Fabian Washington, take Jim Leonhard, take Terrell Suggs, take Samari Rolle, everyone on our defense contributed today and that's what you need when your trying to go win a championship. The way we came out and played as a team today, you have to take your hats off to our team."

RB LE'RON MCCLAIN

On the Raven's offense: "We kept pounding today. We gave up the ball early, but after the fumble everyone gathered around me and told me not to worry and keep running north and south. You have got to keep gutting it out. It's like I said last week, we came in here, and we were hungry."

RB WILLIS MCGAHEE

On the play of Joe Flacco: "He's not a rookie anymore, he's a vet and that rookie season is over with. Right now we need everyone to be veterans on the team and that's what we're doing. He's showing great leadership, great poise and he's doing smart things with the ball. He's going out there and doing what he does best. He's not forcing the ball in there so if there's nothing he's throwing the ball away."

On whether the last touchdown was called by either sideline or by Flacco: "I don't know, you'll have to ask Joe that question. Troy Smith just said that he called it."

About the play of the defense: "Our defense is one of a kind. I just can't explain it, we go against these guys every day and we know what they can do but when you sit back and watch and see what they do against other teams, it's ridiculous. Coach Rex is doing a great job with them. We have Ed Reed who is the best safety in the game right now and we have Ray Lewis who is the best linebacker in the game. We have a lot of weapons on defense."

On what he was thinking on the sidelines after Reed's interception: "Score a touchdown Ed, score a touchdown. There was pressure on us but when Ed scored that touchdown it was a relief and he gave us some breathing room to go out there and play some football."

About Michael Phelps being there: "Mike's been with us all year. He's come to a lot of our games at home. Why not come to Miami, Miami is a beautiful place to be."

(On if it was sweet to win in Miami: "No doubt about it but it's even sweeter that we're going on to the next round. That's the main thing and we're going on to play Tennessee. "

S ED REED

On coming back to Miami and getting this win:"It's special because we've been building a team for a long time around here. Since I've been here this is my first playoff win and a lot of guys in this locker room first playoff win in this league. This team is just trying to stay focused. Now it's time to get ready for the next one."

On if he was gesturing for the "U" after he scored:"That was for Miami. You know, I have a couple of fans up there so I was just throwing it up and plus this is a blessing because this is where it all started."

On how far he thinks he ran for his interception:"Oh man, counting the zig zag? I'm not sure, I'm not sure. It felt like a 200 from track, so it took a while to catch my breath. I don't think I caught my breath until like the third quarter. It was fun."

LB TERRELL SUGGS

On how the defense was able to put Chad Pennington in a position to not be effective: "Well, first you have to take your hat off to Ray Lewis. He's the general and he's the leader. Rex (Ryan) put in the game plan and he got us ready and Ray did his job as our leader and got us ready. We just came down here and we were ready to play. We took it as they already won their playoff game last Sunday against the Jets. This was ours and we think we are a team of divine purpose as long as we can get this thing to snowball. We have a heavyweight match next week but we're going to enjoy the win today."

On how far this will snowball: "Only time will tell, especially the way that Joe is playing. Joe's playing some of the best football I've ever seen right now. Yes, he has earned his name, Joe Flacco. There you go, you've got me on national TV saying it. That's a big step but he's earned it. He's playing like a leader and he's playing like a champ and we're all proud of him. We don't want the roll and the Ravens story to end here and we're ready to go and play some more football."

About the play of Ed Reed: "He's the greatest safety in the game and he's proven that week in and week out. We as a team are disappointed that he didn't get the NFL Defensive Player of the Year award, but then again we probably didn't want him to win it. Everyone who has won an individual award is either out of the playoffs or they didn't make it at all. We commend them on winning their individual award but we are trying to win a bigger award as a team."

About his fumble recovery: "You have got to give credit to the guy who caused the fumble. I think it was Fabian Washington and that's what happens when you play on a swarming defense. I was Johnny on the spot and just happened to be in the right spot at the right time. The actual play was made in the tackle with the guy who caused the fumble but that's how our defense plays."

On how were they were able to force the turnovers:"We have arguably one of the greatest player to ever play the game in Ray Lewis and we do have the greatest safety in the game. Like I said, he proves it week in and week out, Ed Reed can cover everybody on the field. When you've got a duo like that, scary things can happen."

About Ed Reed's interception: "The kid's a freak and he's the greatest safety alive. When he got the ball in his hand, we knew that whenever he sees a crease he's going to hit it like an offensive player. When he gets the ball, he's going to go the distance with it."

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