Transcripts: Panthers Post-Game Quotes

Head Coach Ron Rivera

(on his thoughts on today's game) "Well, I'm disappointed. We had an opportunity early on. We came out, did some good things real fast, and then they get a touchdown off a fortunate play. And then we answered back, but then we never really put it [together] on the defensive side. [There were] way too many missed assignments. Those types of things need to be corrected and taken care of."

(on if it's surprising to see back-to-back games of defensive struggles) "Oh, yes, it is, especially [considering] the fact that we worked on certain things. But apparently we have to look at what we're doing and make sure it gets corrected. We have to find answers, and we have to do it quickly."

(on the Panthers' pass rush seeming nonexistent) "To a degree, yes, I agree. When we did bring pressure, we were a step late, and that's unfortunate. But the only way you're going to get … We're going to look at what we're doing, and we're going to try to find answers to get those things corrected."

(on Carolina's undisciplined penalties) "Without a doubt. The big part of the problem today is we have a number of guys that are down, and we were trying to shuffle guys in and out. Those are things that we have to double-check and make sure are corrected."

(on if there's any update on RB DeAngelo Williams) "No, not yet. I have not talked to Ryan Vermillion."

(on concerns with depth at running back) "Oh, most certainly. We're playing two undrafted free agents right now at running back. As of right now, Darrin Reaves is our starter."

(on the status of TE/FB Richie Brockel) "No. No update on Richie either."

(on what he attributes the undisciplined play to) "Well, I just said that the unfortunate thing is that we have a number of guys that are hurt, trying to shuffle guys in … We just have to make sure we get those guys in that are supposed to be in."

(on seeing the defense unravel over the past few weeks) "Without a doubt. It's very disturbing. Again, just looking at the tape and looking at what we saw last week, I'd like to believe that we understand what we can and can't do. Apparently, we don't understand that well enough. As coaches, we'll go back and look at the tape; we'll find those answers and changes that will be made that are necessary for us to go forward. It's going to start with us coaches, starting with me as the head coach."

(on the kind of day WR Steve Smith Sr. had) "Well, Steve had a nice day. The ball gets tipped, he catches it for a touchdown. He beats Melvin [White] in man coverage and, quite honestly, I would like to see Melvin maintain his composure there because if he rolls with Steve, he would've had a chance for a play. He didn't, and as a result, he gave up a touchdown to Steve. He did some really good things. That's who Steve is. We know who he is."

(on playing a lot of CB Josh Norman) "Yes, yes I did. I did that on purpose, too."

(on if that's something they're going to look at going forward) "We're most certainly going to look at that. I'm not going to have that. If we're not going to maintain our composure when we're playing, I'll make changes. I'm not going to stand for it. That, to me … [When] you have an opportunity to make a play, you have to make a play. We have to coach him up better, and he has to play better. That's the truth of the matter."

(on what he thought about QB Cam Newton's performance today) "I thought he did some nice things. He got pressured again, and we have to be better at that. We have to protect him. I know it's kind of a work in progress as a group, but they seem to hold up and do some good things. We drove the ball pretty well a couple of times. We put ourselves in position to score points. We can't take a big sack and – can't allow it – and knock us out of field goal range on the very first drive, which I thought was very methodical. We came out, we did the no-huddle right off the bat, we had a good tempo – we had the ball for about 7 or 8 minutes and drove it into field goal position, and then we had the big negative play that knocks us out. We can't do that, and that has to be corrected. We have to look at it as coaches, make those corrections and go forward."

(on if he saw enough of WR Kelvin Benjamin's play this afternoon) "Again, a lot of penalties that are called are all subjective. It's an interpretation, and we have to live with it. The rules … We're trying to work through those things. I'm biased, I'm not going to agree with it, but it was called, and we have to live with it and move on."

(on if covering WR Steve Smith Sr. was a moment too big for CB Melvin White) "I just think it was a lack of execution. I thought he was in a great position. I thought he jammed Steve, Steve went vertical, Melvin rolled, and then he kind of lost his composure. It's all about maintaining your composure, especially when you have your back to the ball. You have to be able to read Steve, or whoever the wide receiver is, and then try to make the play on the ball. Because what's going to happen is if you do what you do, more than likely you're going to get a penalty, and that's what happened. They threw the flag, Steve made a great catch."

(on how close he was to letting LB Thomas Davis play today) "Not close enough. He went through [and] did everything with the exception of one thing. We can't take the chance. I'd rather suffer through today than lose a guy for four more weeks or six more weeks."

(on if he had any word with WR Steve Smith Sr. after the game) "No, I haven't had a chance to visit with Steve."

(on what his message was to his team) "The message to our team is we have to get these things corrected. We went through the same thing last year – Week 4 against Arizona – and that's what I basically brought up. I said, 'Guys, we have an opportunity to get things rolling in the right direction.' So, now we have to come back, we'll have a good week of work and get ready for Chicago."

QB Cam Newton

(on the opening drive) "The first thing is, I have to be better and not taking sacks. That put us out of field goal range and cost us, because I know [K Graham] Gano would have made that kick. I'm still maturing as a football player, and I'll learn from this. I know we will come back and have a great week of practice."

(on the injury situation with the RBs) "It is what you make it. We now have some young guys who have an opportunity to make a name for themselves. We still have a long season left. Those guys will get better each week and we will be better."

(on losing back-to-back games by lopsided scores) "My concern is when we lose, whether it's by one point or 20 points. We felt we could move the ball today and be productive. We will get better. It's no time to panic. We're optimistic and we will be okay. Everyone has to look in the mirror and decide how they can get better."

(on Ravens' WR Steve Smith Sr.'s performance) "I told him how proud I was of him. He has a lot of tread on those tires. He's like one of those big Tonka trucks. He's an unbelievably talented player and I respect him so much. I wasn't surprised at the way he played. I'm one of his biggest fans. I wish he was still here, but things happen. I wish him the best."

(on his health) "I'm doing fine. I could have finished this game, but the situation dictated that I come out, and I don't have a problem with that."

CB Josh Norman

(on being 2-2) "Overall, we need to get better and we need to play smarter. We need to fly around like we normally do and make plays on defense. But I'm sure we're going to get better."

(on the emotions of the game with WR Steve Smith Sr. playing) "It was kind of emotional. Frankly, I'm tired of hearing about it though. He did what he did. We did what we did."

(on his on-field conversations with WR Steve Smith Sr.) "He was giving me encouragement and I was giving it back to him. It was…whatever."

T Byron Bell

(on how the game went) "Hats off to Baltimore. They had a good game plan and they played very well. Early on, I felt we were moving the ball very well and we were going to score points."

(on the injury on RB DeAngelo Williams) "He was running very hard and it hurt us badly when he got hurt. I felt very bad because he had worked so hard to get back. [RB] Darrin Reaves got a lot of experience today and that's the only way he's going to get better."

(on the team's mood) "The guys will be down for a while, but we need to stick together and we will. We're 2-2 and we know what the ultimate goal is. We need to work hard and keep the eyes on the prize. We're not going to push any panic buttons. We're going to work hard and focus on Chicago."

S Roman Harper

(on the defense) "We didn't play like we needed to to help our team win today. Everybody has to stand up and get a little bit better and, at the end of the day, this is not what this team is all about. And it's not what we want it to be about. We took it on the chin today, and we've got to bounce back."

(on the rush defense) "Especially on a team that prides itself on being a physical team, we have to play better against the run. We understand that this is how teams are trying to attack us, ball control, and not turning the ball over because they understand what momentum we get off of turnovers. So, they are very cautious, and, at the end of the day, we have to understand that and try to defend that."

CB Thomas DeCoud

(on the defense) "We didn't play very well. We weren't able to stop the run for the second week in a row, and that's something that has to be corrected."

(on the run defense) "We need to be gap sound. Just staying where we need to be and trusting the guy next to you on being where he is supposed to be."

(on losing the last two games) "It's tough, but it's professional football. It's a long season. So, we are going to have to right this ship as soon as possible because we have another game next week."

(on the defense) "We weren't able to stop the run. We weren't very good against the run, and we weren't very good against the pass either. We've got to figure out what's going on, figure out where the kink in the armor is and get it corrected."

(on losing Greg Hardy) "I don't want to use that as a cop out. This is professional football. Everybody is good. Everybody has to step up when his number is called. So, we aren't going to use that as a cop-out."

(on the pass rush) "We're blitzing more. We have linebackers and safeties going. It just gets more guys involved. It's a thing we have to deal with. We're a good football team, and we're going to get it right.

WR Kelvin Benjamin

(on the offense) "We had a lot of mistakes. We have room for growing, and we'll get into the film room and get better as a team."

(on Cam Newton) "He's great. He's a great team guy. He's got the enthusiasm about playing."

(on being able to get deep in the NFL) "Of course, why not?"

(on losing two in a row) "We have to get into the film room, correct the mistakes, and get better."

(on the offensive pass interference call against him) "I went inside. He jumped me inside. I got outside. I thought it was a swim move, but he thought it was a pass interference, and they have a job to do. So, he called it. And you just have to move on from it."

LB Luke Kuechly

(on the defense) "We didn't play very well. That's obvious. When they score 38 points, you didn't play very well. So, it's one of those things. We have to come back Wednesday and get better."

(on the rush defense) "They ran the ball well. We didn't play well as a defense. It's something that we've got to correct. The last two weeks, we didn't play well against the rush. We just have to do better in that aspect of the game. I don't know exactly what happened today. We'll take a peek at it on film, but a lot of it is just gap responsibility. You guys have heard me talk about that the last few weeks. And stopping the run is simple. If you're not in your gaps, they are going to rush you. If you're in your gaps, they can't run the ball. It's cliché, and as easy as it sounds, that's what it comes down to."

(on whether he felt the mistakes from the Pittsburgh Steelers game had been taken care of coming into this game) "I did feel good this week in practice, but it's one of those things that you can feel good as you want in practice, but if you can't put it together in a game, it's not going to work."

(on his feeling after the game) "Not good. It's not a good taste, but that's one good thing about the NFL. This game is over, and we can put it away. And, after we watch the film and concentrate on the next week, we get an opportunity next Sunday to take a good step forward and get back to how we like playing defense."

(on the pass rush) "The pass rush is an important part of the game. We didn't do a good enough job with that today. Greg [Hardy] was a great player. Guys have stepped up and played well in that spot. And, as you know, Wes [Horton] and Kony [Ealy] have done a good job. So, the best thing for us is to look at the film and see where we have improved on. Maybe it wasn't those guys' fault. Maybe it was somebody else's fault. At the end of the day, we've got to play better as a whole. We can't point fingers. We can't say 'What if we had this? What if we had that?' We've got to do our responsibilities. Coaches put us in a good position to make plays, and we just have to do our job."

(on Steve Smith Sr.) "When I'm in the game, I really don't notice who is on the other side of the ball. It's just numbers. That's what I study is numbers – what they are good at, what their tendencies are. He's a great player. Steve's a good guy. He plays hard, and when you watch film, that's what you see. A guy who is competitive, plays hard and goes and gets the ball. So, that's how I kind of look at it."

WR Jerricho Cotchery

(on what he said to Steve Smith Sr.) "I just told him 'Good job and blessings toward him for the rest of the year'."                                                                                                               

(on Steve Smith Sr.) "He's been doing it every game. He's always been a relentless guy. A passionate guy. He plays the game the way you would want a lot of people to play. As far as attacking his man, he lines up and he says 'I'm going to beat you,' and that's the kind of guy you like.'

(on the offense) "When you start moving the ball, you've got to keep that momentum. You don't want to do anything to stall a drive. If we don't have those self-defeating roles, we will be able to put some points on the board."

(on the injuries) "Obviously, you want to be healthy. But, at the end of the day, every man has to prepare like he's starting. And when a guy goes down, he has to step in and do the job. So, there's no excuses from that standpoint. Guys just have to be ready to go. We'll go in and put in the work and try to get this thing turned around."

(on Cam Newton) "Cam is a steady dude. That's the beauty in having a great leader. He has the same demeanor. He's always encouraging guys, 'Hey, we've got to get going' or 'We've got this.' He has a good presence in the huddle. He had some great throws in this game. So there's a lot of positives to take out of it, but, obviously, we've got to get the bad ones corrected."

LB Thomas Davis

(on his pre-game injury test) "I went out there, did the test. A lot of the stuff I did felt really good. But everything didn't feel good. As a player and as an organization, they had to make a decision and they felt I just wasn't ready. I'll do everything in my power to be ready for Chicago next week."

(on watching game from sidelines) "It's extremely tough. As a competitor you don't like to lose football games. That's what happens. We lost. We didn't play well enough to win. We made too many mistakes. It's frustrating. We know what kind of team we have, what we're capable of and we just have to go out there and do it. That's what it boils down to."

(on what's wrong) "It's a combination of missed assignments, missed tackles; just stuff we can correct. That's the best part about it. We can correct it and its on us to correct it if we plan on going where we want to go. At the end of the day there isn't anything to talk about. It's just something we have to go out and do and get it done."

RB Darrin Reaves

(on getting a lot of reps in the game) "I try to play every down like it's my last because you never know when it might be. I just give 100 percent mentally and physically and let the rest take care of itself."

(on RB DeAngelo Williams' injury on top of previous running back injuries) "Week after week that's been the thing. We just keep pushing. I just keep listening to those guys, getting coached up by them. It's the next man up type deal with no "woe is me attitude". That's just the game, the business."

(on today's loss) "We're not holding our heads down, or anything like that. We understand that the Ravens did nothing so much better than we did. We took away plays from ourselves. We need to correct our mistakes and we'll be fine."

(on his performance) "I feel like I did ok. I always feel like I can do better no matter how well I did. It does feel good to play in my first NFL game."

(on how he can improve) "I just need to get my feet wet, learn the speed of the game and the feel of the game , things like that; small stuff. I can get a step quicker, Even if I ran for 200 yards today I'd still feel that I could improve."

TE Greg Olsen

(on today's loss) "It went very poorly. We didn't do a whole lot right. We had a good opening drive, got into field goal range, then went penalty, sack, out of field goal range, punt. That was a tough way to start. We always talk about getting a good start, and starting fast. We did but it just didn't do any good for us. They scored and we answered. It just never seemed like we were able to claw our way back in offensively obviously. We only scored 10 points. It was just an all-around poor effort." (on getting back on track after two straight losses) "You have to look to the next one [game]. It's week four and we are two and two. We are 500 right now with 12 games left. In the NFL it's a long season. You don't win anything in the first month or lose anything. You have to try to learn and move on from these bad games. Unfortunately we've had two in a row now. We've got to figure out what the problem is and correct it. Every game is a big one. We just need to get back on track"

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