HEAD COACH JOHN HARBAUGH
"OK, I appreciate you guys coming down here. Obviously tough loss, very disappointing. Hand it to their defense, they dominated the game. That's the story of the game. They dominated the game really from the beginning to the end. That doesn't mean that our guys didn't fight, compete, and try like crazy, but we couldn't get anything going offensively and I believe that's the story of the game."
(on possible injury to QB Joe Flacco) "Not that was reported to me. I have no information on that. Nothing was said to me by the trainers, but we'll find out if there is something. He was fine in the locker room just now."
(on why the Houston Texans defense played so well against the Ravens' offense) "Not really, I just thought they played really well up front. They did a great job up front. Every one of their guys played well. Good game plan by Romeo (Crennel). Timed up their pressures really well. I thought they were hitting the line of scrimmage really well with their pressures, and that was tough on us. Joe was under duress all day. It wasn't just that, they won some one-on-one battles and all that as far as pass rush. We weren't really clearing them, as far as coverage. They just did a great job."
(on DE J.J. Watt's performance) "I think Watt's a great player. There's really nothing add to that. He just played like he always plays."
(on possible injuries to RB Justin Forsett and offensive tackles) "Nothing I want to share right now. We'll just see how the guys come out of it and see where we're at."
(on the performance of the defense) "I'd agree with that. I thought they played well enough to win. It doesn't really matter. Everybody played hard. We had different degrees of success obviously, about as dramatic as you can have, but everybody played their hearts out, and it was obviously not good enough. But our defense, I thought, played well. I thought our special teams played well. Short fields, the sudden change was outstanding. They did a great job forcing the field goals. You've got to give them a lot of credit. They never cracked in that sense emotionally, team-wise. All those things were there. And that's what I'm excited about going forward. The thing that we lost was control of our destiny, that's tough because when you've got control, when you can win out and make the playoffs, that's a valuable thing. I don't think we have that anymore, but we do have an opportunity to win next week. And that's the opportunity we need to take and seize it. I told the guys in the locker room I said, 'When we leave this locker room, anything we don't need stays here. We're only taking back with us what we can use to go play, compete, and beat the Cleveland Browns. Period. Anything else we don't need, we're not taking with us.' So, you know, I guess from a media standpoint, we can look back, and look at this game and say, 'What went wrong?", and all that and point fingers, but we're not going to do that. We just don't have time for that. We have to go win this next game We have to leave everything here that is baggage. Everything we need that we can learn from, we'll take with us. We'll fight like crazy next week and try to win a tough ACF North game in our stadium."
(on if there was any indication from practice this week on how the game would go today) "No, I thought we practiced well as a matter of fact. I thought the execution was good. We knew what we were doing in practice. Maybe one ball hit the ground on Thursday and Friday. We practiced well, so you can hand it to Houston on this one. They played at another level. It's a heck of a team. I said it earlier in the week, extremely talented. I don't know why, you know, whatever has happened during their season. I haven't studied it like that, but they've got a heck of a football team. The kid played great. Keenum came in, I mean, it's pretty amazing what he did as far as handling the offense, so that's just the way it was."
TIGHT END OWEN DANIELS
(on coming back) "It wasn't ideal, you know? It was an experience to be back here. I thought it was going to be pretty weird and it was. Coming to this locker room and going a different way through the tunnel and being on a different sideline and all that stuff. It was great seeing guys and Mr. McNair came up to me after the game which was awesome. So, it was cool to be back but obviously not the end result that we wanted."
(on the offensive game plan) "Sputtered is an understatement. We really couldn't do anything. We turned the ball over obviously in our own territory a couple of times and that didn't help. We just couldn't get in sync doing anything like throwing the ball and running the ball. Texans have a really good defense. We knew that coming in. We just didn't make any plays down the field or doing anything to keep drives alive."
(on what DE JJ Watt said to him) "Honestly, I think he was pretty quiet out there. I didn't hear him barking at all. I said hi to all the guys out there. I naturally said what's up in passing. It was good to see those guys."
(on if Gary Kubiak pointed out how the importance of winning this game) "No. He's always going to downplay it. It's really important for us as a team. We were looking at this as a playoff game to keep everything in our control in terms of going to the playoffs and keeping our division title hopes alive. That was the message during the week. It wasn't coming back here or anything like that. Definitely downplayed that."
QUARTERBACK JOE FLACCO
(on if he was injured or in pain throughout the game) "I was not injured. There was one time when I was trying to buckle my shoulder pad, maybe that is what you saw."
(on having a loss like this late in the season) "I mean we got our ass kicked. It's really simple. We did a lot of things not very well."
(on the defense and the play of J.J. Watt) "As a defensive line and unit they played well together. It's tough to really feel one guy. I know at the end of the game, I felt him a bit. It felt like I was getting hit in the back every time I let go of a pass, but that's the name of the game. He's a good player. For the most part they didn't get to us, but they created a lot of havoc and caused a lot of disruption."
(on what did they do in the first half that caused so many problems) "The biggest thing was that they brought pressure up the middle, where some of our protection is weak. They were able to get me on my back foot and force us hot. We never really got anything going and couldn't get into a groove of any kind. We couldn't move the ball, couldn't make any first downs, couldn't get any completions. We just couldn't get ourselves going, and it just wasn't good."
(on no longer controlling their own destiny to the playoffs) "We've been in this situation last year, where we didn't really control our own destiny, and we didn't play well. All we can control is going out there next week against Cleveland and winning a football game. I am not sure what all else has to happen, but the bottom line is that we have to go out there and win a game."
(on Ravens Running Back Justin Forsett not finishing the game) "I know we had some guys that got beat up out there at the end of the game. I don't really know what happened, so we will just have to wait to hear something."
(on the play of Texans CB Kareem Jackson) "The one he undercut for an interception, he made a nice play and catch there. On the other one, it hit him right in the chest there, so I would hope he would pick that one. That's the way it goes, he played well creating turnovers that got them in position to score. You have to tip your hat to him."
(on his emotions for this loss) "Like I said earlier, we just got whopped man. There's no other way about it. Our defense played well. Our special teams played well, and we didn't do a single thing on offense. We just got beat up and whooped. It's part of being a NFL football player; being able to take this sometimes and move on."
(on his concern for the way the offense has played recently) "Well obviously you aren't happy about it. Last week we were able to do what we needed to do to win the football game, but this week we were not. Not happy about it, but it's a little too late at this point. We just need to get back in there and do the best we can for next week."
(on his inaccuracy this week as compared to the last few weeks) "They did a lot of things today. They did some things up front that got me on my back foot. They had good coverage and took away the main guys. They were disruptive and got me off my spot. Nothing came easy today. There wasn't anything that was just like boom, give me, give me, give me. Everything we were we had to go take it and earn it, and it was like that for the full 60 minutes. It was tough."
(on the running game not performing well) "Well I think that is just part of it. Part of it was getting me off the spot and then part of it was them stopping the run. That just shows that they were playing well up front. If we are not getting our running game going, it is going to affect us. Our running game wasn't working though for a reason. They were playing physical and they were playing well up there."
(on if Gary Kubiak gave any indication on coming back to Houston) "No, he did not. Just by looking at Gary or listening to Gary, you wouldn't of known that he had anything to do with Houston in the past. We have all been in situations similar to that, so we can understand what it means. It is a credit to Gary to not really ever bring that up."
WIDE RECEIVER STEVE SMITH SR.
(on CBs Kareem Jackson and Johnathan Joseph) "Johnathan's been in the league a long time. The other guy hasn't been in the league that long, has he? (4 or 5 years) That's not very long. They play a lot of zone coverage. JJ (Watt) has always been good; he's a great player and I respect the heck out of him. He plays a mixture of coverages and he's very savvy and smart. Nothing I haven't seen in 14 years so I'll be alright."
(on how the team bounces back from today's loss) "You don't have a choice; you've got to. We got a big week next week—last game of the season. It's make or break and it says everything. We don't really have a choice to sit around and analyze it and woe is me and come up with excuses. Bottom line is offensively we just got our ass kicked. Hate to say it that way but that's what happened. That's what the score looks like and that's what it looks like when you just lose. That is the consequences of losing. We expect and understand the negative feedback, all the fat, lazy, sorry, couch quarterbacks that are going to come out. We expect that, understand that and we're not going to pay attention to it."
WIDE RECEIVER TORREY SMITH
(on what happened on his injury) "I just started cramping a few plays before then that was kind of off and on. When I was running, it happens."
(on what seemed to go wrong on offense) "Execution. We weren't on the same page at any level. We didn't make the plays when they were there. We made things tough on ourselves and it was too tough a hole to dig out of."
(on if the pressure threw the rhythm off offensively) "It's only so many things you can do when you're being pressured. The things that we did have, we weren't hitting. So, we were just killing ourselves."
(on the focus going into the last game with playoff implications on the line) "It's terrible. It's a must win game. You can say this one was, but I mean we have no control. So we have to win and I don't know what the scenario is. We have to win and hope folks lose. It's not a real good feeling. We have a tough game ahead and Cleveland is a great team. We have to pull it off and hope we get a good Christmas present."
(on if he is shocked by this performance) "I mean y'all saw the stats on their defense. No pushover by any means. They did a great job. Our defense played one hell of game, special teams as well. We blew this one on offense. It's no other way to look at it. It was our execution and we turned the ball over when we hadn't turned the ball over. One of them was complete. My fault and I sucked on the route. I owe Joe (Flacco) for that one and we just were not ourselves and we were not executing."