What the Bengals Said After Beating Ravens

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Left: QB Joe Burrow; Right: WR Ja'Marr Chase

Head Coach Zac Taylor

*(on quite a different result from last year) *"It's a different team. We're allowed to build and improve, and we just have a different mentality right now. We've done a lot of different things to get to this position, and I've given out a lot of tough speeches over time about great things to come and [to] keep working. And you hope and pray that the team believes in that. That's the foundation of what we're building, and this is the result. This is their moment. Everything we've talked about, we've earned. We're starting to earn respect, but we still have a long way to go. Just winning one road game against a divisional opponent, that's what you have to do if you want to compete in this league. We have a long way to go, but I'm really proud of the collective team effort. This was a complete game today by all three phases, and that's what we need to come on the road to Baltimore with and beat them." 

(on facing adversity in the middle of the game)
"Baltimore is a dangerous team, and so you know they're going to have some big plays. You stop what you can stop, but they're going to get explosive plays. That's what they do. You just have to be able to respond immediately after that. I don't think anybody was phased when they got that touchdown coming out of the second half. We knew it was going to be that type of game. They were going to have their moments where they were going to score and make big plays. And you just have to respond. And we did. [We] didn't give up another point after that." 

(on how big of a difference maker Ja'Marr Chase is)
"I mean, he broke a snap route on third down and scored a touchdown. He's dynamic; he's smart; he just makes plays with the ball in his hand. But, part of it is we have [Tyler Boyd] and Tee [Higgins]. So, teams just can't say we're going to lock in on Ja'Marr because we have other playmakers. [Ja'Marr] may get the production sometimes. But I can promise you that the other receivers we have will factor into the defense playing the way that they do. So, Ja'Marr is going to continue to have a lot of opportunities." 

(on whether he will look back one day and say "This is where it started for the Bengals")
"No, I feel like it started before this. These are just things we needed to check off. Baltimore has really taken it to us the last several times we have played them, and we don't run from that. So, I won't say we needed to prove it to ourselves, because we had a lot of people in that locker room who were confident going into that game today. But this was a box we needed to check. Now, we just move forward. We have a huge game next week, and we just can't let this week carry over and have our guys getting fat and happy. That's not what good teams do. So, we're going to make sure we handle this victory the right way." 

(on sacking Lamar Jackson five times)
"I thought our defensive coaching staff came together with a great plan, and our guys executed it to a tee. We have smart pass rushers, and [Jackson] is so dangerous. Every time he extends a play, he's capable of running for an explosive play or passing for one. He's just such a tremendous player, and I'm really proud of how our defense handled him today. That was a really big step for us." 

QB Joe Burrow

(on how he thought he played)
"Aside from the interception that I'm disappointed in, I thought I played really well. There's always stuff to clean up, but we made plays, and we won the game. [I'm] never going to be upset about thrashing like that. [We] still room to improve but excited about the win."  

(on what it says about the team winning two division games on the road)
"We just got tough resilient guys that don't back down under pressure. That team [Baltimore] puts the most pressure on you of any team that I've played in the league, and we really responded today. We got guys on the outside that are tough, physical guys that are tough to cover, and the O-line played great today when they had to. Third downs were a big emphasis for us, and I think, I don't know what the stats for us are, but I feel pretty good about all of our third downs in the second half. So you know, good day." 

(on responding in the third quarter after Ravens took the lead)
"You know, we were playing alright up to that point. We weren't playing great, and then that two-minute drive really propelled us going into the half. After that, you know, came into the locker room and was like, 'We got momentum, we're rolling, we're seeing things better, we're making plays,' so after that, we knew what was going to happen." 

(on what kind of statement scoring 41 points against the Ravens was)
"I think it was a big statement, 2-0 in the division for the first time that I can remember. You know the most exciting thing was the last two or the last three drives where you know, they knew, we were going to run the ball, and the O-line really took it to them. That was exciting to see. I know those guys were fired up about that, so that's how you should finish the game – start out throwing the ball, get out on top, and then the O-line finishes it off."  

*(on how he knew it was going to be a different type of game than he previous game against Baltimore) *"We had a great plan. Coaches did a great job with putting together a plan that I felt good about, and we felt good about, and we knew what [the Ravens] do is they make you, they put you in a lot of one-on-one matchups, so you have to win, and that's why guys get paid. You've got to go win the one-on-one matchup, and we have guys that did that today in the second quarter and the second half. We really won all of our one-on-one matchups that really mattered."

(on the plays demonstrating trust and chemistry with Chase)
"I mean there were several times in the second half where that happened where there is zero check where he had Marlon Humphrey – who I think is the best corner in the league, and [the Ravens] play that way because they have that guy to play a zero blitz and put him one on one, and Ja'Marr did a great job against him today. There are multiple times where he got that guy one on one and won his one-on-one matchup."  

(on if there's a better feeling on coming back and beating a team you struggled against in a previous game)
"That's a great feeling. That was the thing, you know, I got injured last year that was one of the things I was most upset about was not getting a chance against our division multiple times. I've always felt like the more I play, you know, if you give me two chances against a team, I'm going to play much better the second time. That's just common sense in my head, and I didn't get that chance against Pittsburgh and Baltimore last year. You saw against the Browns last year I got better from Game 1 to Game 2, and that's what I try to do going forward." 

WR Ja'Marr Chase

(on whether the gameplan for him was different today)
"The gameplan today still had deep balls, but, of course, it was whatever I could get my hands on. [The defense] was playing over the top on us today. You know, trying to go deep. [Marlon] Humphrey did a great job of not letting me go over the top of him. We just started going to back-shoulders, stop routes, slants, quick pitches and stuff like that. After the catches come the [yards after the catch], breaking the tackle, making guys miss, and heading to the end zone." 

(on Burrow's performance)
"I expect Joe to be like this. I expect nothing less. I expect him to come out of every game with his A-game, as he would expect of me." 

(on his touchdown play)
"I had a slant on that play. I knew my release, what I wanted to do before I ran the route. I've been watching Humphrey's film day and night to get the best idea I can have of him. I know he's such a great corner. I came off the line with some hesitation then gave it a big burst and cut in on the slant route. I protected myself from any hit. As I was getting hit, my momentum took me into a spin. I kept following the spin and went from there." 

(on whether it matters to him if he has a good game against a top cornerback)
"Of course, I don't know how other receivers feel but matchups like that; you want to get excited for them. You want to have something to be excited about. It's the best against the best. In the NFL, you can't shy away from it, because it's definitely going to happen if you're putting up stats. It's just something you have to acknowledge. You've got to give respect to your opponent. I'm pretty sure he gave his respect to me. But you have to know your opponent like they know you. I took my time and watched a lot of film on him." 

(on if Humphrey said anything to him toward the end of the game)
"Yes, he was just like, 'Good job. Keep working.' I was like, 'Same thing to you,' and we just kept playing." 

TE C.J. Uzomah

(on whether the momentum is on their side after beating Pittsburgh and Baltimore on the road)
"I don't know about momentum. I think we need to get the train rolling. We are trying to establish who we are as a team and put the league on notice that this isn't the Bengals of the past. This is the 2021 Bengals, and the past is the past." 

(on dealing with the crowd noise early)
"The crowd was a factor early on. I know I botched one thing that almost cost us. Luckily, it didn't, because Joe [Burrow] was back in the pocket making things happen. The offensive line doesn't get enough credit. They played like 'no other' today. Baltimore brings a variety of things. So, you've got the [stuff] they bring on defense with the crowd noise and having to get everything communicated. It's tough. We did a great job today. Joe [Burrow] and the line did a great job picking us up." 

(on whether he expected Humphrey to be covering him on his touchdown)
"Hell no, are you kidding me? I looked up, and I was like, 'OK.' I wasn't prepared for it, but it's national tight end day. You've got to make something happen. You can't let anybody else have all the fun. Even though I caught the touchdown, Drew [Sample] had to block Calais Campbell one on one and did a hell of a job. If [Sample] didn't block [Campbell], the way he did, Joe [Burrow] would not have been able to get the ball off. That touchdown is for Drew for sure. That block really helped me to get open." 

DE Trey Hendrickson

(on their game plan to stop the Ravens)
"We game planned to stop the run and we knew that if we had that aspect of the game handled with our discipline and run fits that we'd make them one dimensional, and that was one of the goals for this one." 

(on wanting to make Jackson play with the ball in the pocket)
"They have weapons all over the field and that's a part of the game plan that we specifically attacked, was taking away certain elements and weapons and getting after him in the passing game. So, you know, I think it's one of these things. I can't say enough about the back end with the linebackers covering too to make way for us to capitalize." 

(on his interaction with T Alejandro Villanueva when Jackson's long run was called back) "Well, I mean cheating in any game, it's not supposed to be ... It's pretty frowned upon. I mean if we're playing checkers, I'm pretty sure that would be the same way. Try not to cheat; it takes production away. Things like that, I mean, that's why you play the game. It's part of the element of being who we are out there and having fun, and that's one of the aspects of this defense that I'm able to have fun and it's really special."

(on if he was pointing to show Villanueva was holding)
"Well, they have a huge Jumbotron. So, everybody could see. So, it's just one of those things, you know, part of the game." 

DE Sam Hubbard

(on if a win like this means more)
"We had a long period of time where we couldn't win on the road, and we kind of got over that hump. These divisional games are huge. To finish the way we did and not allow them to come back into it and have that killer instinct is just so huge for us as a team, what we've come from, how we've progressed and where we've always envisioned ourselves getting. Now, finally to see that is good." 
 
(on playing against Jackson)
"Lamar is a special player, and playing against him, you have to continue to rush even if you win your one-on-ones. He's going to get out; whether he's jumping around back there or escaping from a tackle, the play is never over. You have to keep relentlessly pursuing him and swarming him. All of those sacks today were four- or five-man efforts. I was lucky to get a couple, because he just jumped to my side." 

(on a different gameplan because it was the Ravens)
"Yes, I mean, you have to prepare differently for them. We had a few practices in camp where we ran some defenses against this style of offense, because it's so much that you just can't prepare for it in one week. So, they're a divisional opponent. We had this game on our calendar for a long time."  

*(on how tough it is to deal with Jackson) *"We always have to have two guys on him, one inside shoulder [and] one outside shoulder. So, you always have to have two people on the ball."

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