What the Dolphins Said After Upsetting Ravens

Miami Dolphins Head Coach Brian Flores

Head Coach Brian Flores

How would you rank that defensive performance?

"I mean, definitely a tough opponent. Thought we did a lot of good things. Kept the score down. Kept them out of the end zone for the most part. They made a lot of plays. We made a lot of plays. They made some plays. It was a 60-minute battle. Really came down to the end. I thought it was good to get a win."

What was the message at halftime?

"The message to the team was we've got to play 60 minutes. It's a very good team over there. Good players, good coaches. You got to play 60 minutes every week, but especially against a team like that, as physical and as skilled as they are. That was the message."

What went into the decision to make a change at QB?

"The injury to Jacoby (Brissett). Jacoby (Brissett) went down and I think everybody saw that. He went down, went into the tent. We decided to put Tua (Tagovailoa) in, obviously. Then I think (Jacoby) probably was okay to go back in, but we just decided to stay with Tua. He made a couple of passes, hit a couple of passes, and just felt like might as well just leave him in there."

On Tagovailoa pushing the ball down the field:

"Like we said, he was getting better, but driving the ball down the field was something that was a little bit of an issue and I think he did a good job. Pushed through it. There was definitely some discomfort and he pushed through it and played well."

You guys went with three inside linebackers to basically play QB Lamar Jackson. What was the thought process in that and a lot of the zero coverages that you did?

"I think Josh (Boyer) did a great job calling the game. Called it aggressively. I think our entire staff – offense, defense, special teams – did a great job preparing these guys on a short week against a very good opponent. Yeah, we felt like we had to bring pressure. He (Lamar Jackson) is a very skilled player and he got out of there a couple of times too. They made some plays down the – take the play down the sideline at the end of the game. It was a good play, but we made a few more than they did and came out with the win."

QB Tua Tagovailoa

We see Jacoby went down with an unfortunate injury. What's going through your mind?

"I got to go in. That's all that was going through my mind. I got to go in, so we were talking through some plays, and that happened on the third down, so fourth down we had to punt, so we were on the sideline talking through some plays and whatnot that I liked. That's kind of what we did."

How is your finger doing?

"It doesn't feel good, I can tell you that. Got it banged up a little bit in the game, but it's good. You know, we got about 10 days to heal up, rest up, so we'll take all the time we can."

How does your finger change how you grip the football or how you've been able to grip the football?

"Man, it's tough when it's fractured, you know, trying to grip a ball. I don't know if you have had a fracture before with anything, but it hurts to do things with it, so just tough. Just got to fight through it."

CB Xavien Howard

A couple of weeks ago after the Bills game you said that you guys were getting back to a lot of things that you were doing last year that made you successful on defense. Do you feel like that trend has continued after tonight?

"Right, right. That played a big role. The defense has done a hell of a job on defense, so you know, we just got to keep the team doing that."

Can you take us through your touchdown?

"It was a great call and I was inside leverage. I knew he was going to try to run a slant, and he ran the slant, and I ended up breaking on the ball. The ball came out and I scored a touchdown."

What's your opinion on Jevon Holland and what he can do?

"He can do everything back there. When the ball in the air, it's either his ball or my ball. That's how we play on the back end, me and him. He does a lot of great things back there."

A lot of defensive back blitzes tonight. What does that do for you or how has your job changed, your role or any given role changed when safeties and corners are blitzing?

"You're on an island. They pay us to be on the island. You know, you got to deal with it. Any result come on with that, it's on us."

I think you told us once that you were like a little RG3 out there. Do you channel that when all of a sudden the defense turns off, and you have the ball in your hand?

"For sure. I try to get to the end zone. I think it's probably my second touchdown. You know, we needed a big play and I just trust the people that was in front of me and just follow the blocks, and try to get to the end zone."

S Jevon Holland

Not just for the win, but how much fun is a game playing like that for you guys – I think it was 20-some odd defensive back blitzes throughout the night?

"It's as much fun as any other game we've had. Going out there every night being able to put our talents on display. I mean, that's the most fun I've ever had. Regardless of the game plan, I'm out there having fun, yeah."

What do you feel like was the key to slowing down one of the best players in the NFL, Lamar Jackson?

"I said this earlier in the season, and I'm going to say it again. It's the TNTs, the "takes no talent." Running the ball, doing a little bit extra. Do your job and then try to do some more. That's basically what it is, and that's what it comes down to, the TNTs. The Ravens, Lamar, they're a hell of a team. A hell of a team. I think we did a good job out there."

What's the locker room like right now?

"Oh, it's turned up in there. You know, screaming and all that, laughter, but I am tired."

OG Robert Hunt

Why did you catch the ball?

"I wasn't trying to. I just kind of saw it and it was third down. I was, like, all right, let's try to – it was a big game. I wanted to win. I just saw the ball, and I don't know. I just blanked out, man. I just caught the ball and tried to run with it. (laughter) Calais (Campbell) did a really good job of defending the play, though."

Did you forget in the moment that you're not allowed to catch the ball?

"Yeah, I did. I did. I really did. (laughter) Yeah. It's embarrassing. It's all over the internet, too."

Ever somersaulted before?

"That wasn't a somersault. He got me pretty good. He almost broke my neck." (laughter)

What were you thinking as you reached for the pylon?

"Honestly, I was just – like I said, I wanted to win. I didn't know if the play counted or not. I got the ball in my hand, and I wanted to try to score it. I just try to do whatever so I can so we could have the feeling that we got now, which is a great feeling."

LB Andrew Van Ginkel

How does it clear things up for you or does it clear things up for you at all when the defense calls so many defensive back, safety and cornerback blitzes? Do you think it keeps offenses on their toes, or do you think it helps you in any way?

"Ultimately, it comes down to us just being able to execute what the coaches call, everybody doing their job and don't do anything beyond that. If everybody takes care of their business and coaches are going to put us in the right place to succeed and yeah."

When you line so many people up at the line of scrimmage, do you notice that an offense maybe either panics or causes some chaos for the protection team?

"Yeah, it's going to put pressure on them and that's what we're trying to do Make them communicate, make them execute and then us just taking care of that."

We have a nine-series stretch where you forced QB Lamar Jackson and the Ravens' offense into eight punts and that CB Xavien Howard touchdown. What do you think that does do with the collective confidence of the defense?

"Man, it's awesome. Any time you are getting three and outs and off the field it's a huge momentum swing. Any time we can feed the offense, give them the ball they're bound to make something happen. You saw that tonight. Any time you can just get off the field and try to limit the defensive plays, I think that goes a long way as a defense and builds your confidence from week to week."

WR Albert Wilson

What happened on the long reception on the final touchdown drive?

"It was a look that we were getting all night and I just put the speed on to see if he was going to see me. He didn't happen to see me and it worked out pretty good."

Were you surprised you were that wide open?

"For sure. We ran the play a ton of times the whole game. It's just different looks, changing your speed before the play, continue with it up the sideline kind of made it look like a different play. It was cool."

What was the vibe when Tagovailoa entered the game?

"It doesn't make a difference. We're going to call the same plays as it was if Jacoby (Brissett) was in there. We know both of them are starters in this league so we're comfortable and confident with either one."

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