On how Denver WR/RS Eddie Royal stands out from the other returners they have faced: "I think Eddie Royal stands out because, like a couple of other guys, he does both [punt and kickoff returns] well. It's not a real surprise to me. Where he went to college [Virginia Tech], special teams is a high priority. So, he's grown up under [Frank] Beamer's special team system. He knows how to be tough on returns. He can fall forward and get yards. He's got quick feet and he's fast. That sounds like a real simple formula, but some guys are quick and some guys are fast. He's quick and he's fast."
On how unique it is for Royal to return both punts and kickoffs: "There are not a lot of guys that do both that well. He's one of the guys that you have to look at in both phases and say, 'He's a threat in both.' He proved it against San Diego."
On if he has been doing extra work to prepare for Denver P Mitch Berger: "I think it may be more of a factor if we hadn't been so familiar with him a year ago. We played against him three times [with Pittsburgh]. We have a pretty good idea of what he's about and what his style is. How he fits into their system remains to be seen. So, that probably is the unknown, but we've seen him. We have a pretty good scouting report on him from our previous games against him. Anytime there is change, you have to adjust when you see the game and see what the real picture is. So, there will be some conversations on our sidelines."
On if opponents are not giving opportunities to return punts or if it is a problem with the Ravens' personnel: "Anytime in punt returns, you have to be opportunistic, and that's not something we've done very well, real frankly. There are a lot of different factors that go into that, but we spend a lot of time during our open date of analyzing that and practicing that. We think we have a pretty good plan going forward. We've worked on the skills during practice. We, as coaches, looked at what we're calling, where we're calling it and how we're scouting the opponents. We're trying to make a move in that regard. We need to be more productive in that phase."
On Denver's numbers in the second half:"I tell you what, they haven't really done anything scheme-wise in the second half that they didn't do in the first half. They just continue to play. They believe in what they're doing, and they're doing a great job of executing their defense. You don't see a ton of half-time adjustments, not to mean that they couldn't in this game, but they believe in what they're doing. They're running the same defense they ran the whole preseason, and they're just sticking to their plan."
On if their movements on defense makes offenses think a little bit more:"I think that's what NFL defenses do. Some just do it better than others, and they're obviously doing a good job of it."
On what makes OLB/DE Elvis Dumervil so dangerous as a pass rusher:"Size? I don't know that size matters in pass rush. He's explosive, he's fast, he's relentless – all the things that you see in great pass rushers, most great pass rushers, on a defense that can put teams in passing situations. And I think that's a big part of it, too. They've done an outstanding job of putting people in passing situations, and then they do a good job of keeping him fresh, getting him good matchups. And like good pass rushers, he's relentless."
On if going from head coach to coordinator re-energizes a coach, like Broncos defensive coordinator Mike Nolan:"I guess he could answer that. I think a good football coach is a good football coach. Now that you ask the question, now I'm thinking about it here a little bit, good football coaches are good football coaches, regardless. Records are not always reflective of a guy's ability to coach. That's just the circumstances that we all experience being in this business long enough. He's an outstanding football coach, and to me he always has been. He always has been. I guess he could probably answer that question better than I can."
What makes Denver's pass rush better than others:"They've got some veteran guys that I think understand offensive schemes, offensive protections. That's a big part, when guys can understand what people are trying to do to them. They've got a veteran secondary that they can complement their front with, with secondary pressures. A lot of things go into it. They just play hard. They use good technique. That's how you set up your offense. You really set your offense for these kinds of defenses, because you know you're going to face them eventually. That's what we're trying to do. Our techniques are built around these types of defenses, and that's why it becomes such a great test to what we're all about."
On if there is a better one-two punch in the league than Broncos' DBs Brian Dawkins and Champ Bailey:"Good question. I don't know that I have the answer. But, [they're] two guys that are playing at a high level. Sometimes a change of scenery for a player re-energizes him, whether it be a trade or whether it be from a free-agent standpoint. Both of those guys are playing the way they've always played. They've always been outstanding football players."
On if QB Joe Flacco's calm demeanor is something that is coached or is just in a quarterback:"Another good question. You try to coach it. You address it. I think you can maybe improve it. I think there are little things that you'd like to think help. But, you may be on… It could be something that they either have or they don't. It's a good question, but I really don't have the answer. I know one thing: You're looking for the guy that has it. You better keep looking until you find that guy, because it's probably pretty important."
On how the offense can get off to a quicker start:"Execute. There are games you do it, games you don't. That's the way it's played out for us so far this year. We just have to execute. Usually, most good defenses will give you something maybe that they haven't shown, so you've got to rely on just your overall football knowledge to come up with those answers during the course of a drive. Probably, that's where maybe some young players struggle a little bit. Denver, that's pretty much what they do. The first series, I'm sure you'll see on Sunday, there'll be some things. Each week they give somebody something they haven't seen. Obviously, we'll have to be ready for that."
On if time of possession can be a misleading statistic:"You want to possess the ball, there's no doubt about it. But as it relates to winning championships, Super Bowl teams possess the ball somewhere between 30 and 31 minutes on the average. If you're in four-minute offense at the end of the game, your time of possession is going to get tilted. That's just the way it works. Your ability to get in four minutes is really predicated on what you do prior to that on third down. If you look at the teams, you've got to… Third-down conversions are key to time of possession. Third-down conversions allow you to get in a four-minute offense, which then tilts the time of possession in your favor. You've got to just know how it all evolves. It's not time of possession only. Usually, that's just a product of being ahead late in games. Does that make sense? It makes sense to me." (laughter)
On Denver QB Kyle Orton: "[Kyle] Orton's doing a great job. They've done a great job with their system of making him be able to do what he can do. He's done a good job finding the open receivers. He's done a good job of throwing the ball and not taking sacks. He's playing exactly like they want him to in that system."
On Orton not throwing the ball downfield as much, as he throws shorter passes: "He will go deep. He'll take shots every game. Again, there are a lot of similarities of the Denver offense to the New England offense. It's the same kind of deal with the underneath type of routes. When you start biting up on those and you don't play your position, then they're going to go deep and take shots."
On his thoughts about the matchup with Denver WR Brandon Marshall: "I think I mentioned this last time: This league is full of great receivers. The thing about them is that they have a number of good receivers. That's what you're faced with week in and week out. Marshall is an outstanding receiver. He's got great size. The thing that Marshall has done a really good job of is when he catches [the football], that's when he becomes very dangerous. He's like a tight end or a running back running with the football after he catches it. He's very physical with the ball."
On if there was a need for major changes in the bye week: "What we did during the bye week, and what we would always do during the bye week, is we took a total look at everything we're doing. We always go by win – losses, not team win – losses, defense win – losses. When this defense was called, was it a win or a loss based on the number of yards you set at your parameters? We saw a few things that we know we can improve on, and that's what our job is – to make sure we're doing what's best for these players. So, we did a lot of work on that. We looked at everything we're doing, when we're doing it, with who we're doing it with, and then made some adjustments."
On if they had more wins than losses: "We had more wins than losses, but there were things that were very, very apparent. It was good to for us to be able to see that because now we can move forward and make those adjustments."
On if he expects rookie CB/RS Lardarius Webb to get increased playing time on defense: "Every single time he goes in the ball game, it starts with special teams with him, and every time he goes in a ball game, he shows that he makes plays. He's gotten a lot more reps in practice with the first unit. I think his role will keep being expanded all the time."
On if there are any benefits to having played New England already: "Yeah, I think there are benefits. I think there are benefits for me, personally, to be able to have seen them twice. There are benefits for the players because when they look at them, they say, 'Oh yeah, that's the same thing they did, or that's similar to what they did.' So, there is always carryover that way with it."
On if he thinks Orton is being smart with where he throws the football: "That and the timing. He's done a great job of timing. He hasn't forced them. They've had a lot of routes and a lot of combinations where there is somebody that's a little bit open because they spread you out a little bit. There have been passes that have been sure passes, not trying to force them in there. So, I think that's a lot of it."
On how the Ravens get more of a pass rush: "Well No. 1, we've worked on it, as the year goes on, what happens is your individual time gets cut down. So, we kind of went back to saying, 'We're going to put this amount of time, of our individual [drills], into pass rush.' The other part of it is putting people into positions that are good pass rushers to be able to do that. We've addressed a number of those things during the off week."
On if guys bunching up and not staying in their lanes are the main reasons for the weak run defense: "No, I don't think you can say it's one thing. It's common when that happens, when you don't have success or when something happens, it's common for a guy to say, 'I can make that play; I'm going to try to make that play.' What ends up happening is you can go through that whole ball game against the Vikings – and there are a lot of things going really good – then all of the sudden, bang, one breaks. That's what we have to have – guys not trying to play the position that they're not playing – and play the defense. Then we will be fine."
On comparing this year's Denver offense to what he's seen before:"Oh, they're smoking. Not only are they a great football team, but also they're playing with tremendous swagger and tremendous confidence. A team like that – that gets rolling like that – they're dangerous. So, I think they're playing the best football in all the NFL."
On whether he is aware that Patriots WR Randy Moss is the only person to grab an interception from Broncos QB Kyle Orton: "Randy Moss? I didn't even know that."
On what he has seen in Orton and the way they're using him in the offense: "Well, I think he's making a lot of good decisions. He's proven that Denver got the best of the trade, and he's just playing phenomenal. I think this is his breakout year. He's just playing really good. He's playing really good football."
On whether they will get their swagger back if they can beat Denver: "We need it. We definitely need to show up [with it]. We can't get it back. We can't go there trying to beat them in order to get that little pep in our step back. We need to walk into the stadium with it. If we don't have it, it's going to be another long day for the city of Baltimore. So, I think we show up as the Baltimore Ravens. If we show up, I like our chances."
On how much the bye week helped in getting the defense right again: "I guess the only way to tell is when we go out there on Sunday. I think rest in this league is the best medicine. You know, we got some rest, but none of us really got away from football. All of us are still thinking about we're 3-3 and how do we get this team to snowball again, to get another tally in the win mark. And that's pretty much what all of us are thinking, and we just need to get back to us being us."
On Broncos WR Brandon Marshall being a challenge: "He's a man. He's definitely a man. I think he's 6-4, 230 [pounds], and they might have to line me up out there on him maybe just to get a little jam. But, you know he's also playing really great football. You saw him turn a 15-yard play into a 75-yarder. And the kid has tremendous talent. His physical attributes are something of a video game. So, it's going to take a whole defense. It's not just on our corners or our secondary; it's the whole defense's responsibility to make sure he doesn't have a great game."
On whether they are a team that thrives when its back is against the wall: "We don't choose to thrive like that. Sometimes that's the only way it pans out. It seems like we're always fighting an uphill battle, but we make it hard on ourselves. You know, we do it to ourselves. All the experts keep saying, 'Oh, three plays, and they're 6-0." But we can't live up there. We live in the reality, and the reality is we're 3-3. And we just better start playing some serious football. Otherwise, our January is not going to look that good."
On what the experts are saying about Terrell Suggs' game: "I don't know. I'm hearing a little bit of everything: 'He's not the same pass rusher,' and all of this and that. I did the math myself. I put more pressure on [myself] than anybody does. I was looking at myself, and I was like, 'Where was I at last year around this time?' I think I had 3½ or maybe 4 [sacks]. So, I'm just a sack behind where I was last year, but it's time to turn it up. The bye week has come and gone, and we've got six [games] out of the way and we've got 10 [games] left. So, if we all turn it up, I think we should be fine. But either way, I'm going to continue to be me."
On what he attributes the breakdowns in the run defense to the last few contests: "I don't even know. Like I said, we've faced great backs in the past, and nobody has had the kind of game that we've given up the last two games. But I don't know. I think it's just [that] we just need to start the streak again. We were too heartbroken that it happened, maybe the first game, and it was like, 'Oh, we can't let it happen again.' Then it happens again. It was kind of like quicksand; the harder you fight back, the deeper you sink. So, I think we just need to relax. You know, if they pop one, they pop one. I think the most important thing right now, it's not stopping the run, it's not getting sacks, it's winning. So, you all would have forgotten Adrian Peterson's 100 yards had we won that game. We'd have forgotten [Brett] Favre threw [for] all those yards had we won the game. I think that's the most point, but whatever we've got to do to win, that's what has to be done."