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Payton Speaks

Excerpts from the coach's press conference:

  • Are you anxious to get back on the field and get into a game again?

"When you come off a loss, the next game can't come quick enough. You want to play again. The challenge is that we're on a longer week. I think both teams will be anxious to play again after last weekend."

  • Do you think you used Deuce enough last week?

"The challenge always is when the number offensive snaps decreases and you don't have the efficiency that you'd like on third down and you fall behind in the fourth quarter, generally those numbers reflect in not enough carries. Certainly I'd like to be able to run the ball with Deuce and Reggie. Sometimes it becomes reflective of what takes place during the game. We'll study that and look to have more balance, definitely."

  • Having more time to look at the film, did you spend more time breaking down what went wrong and trying to find ways to correct it?

"We put closure at some point on Indianapolis and we probably had more time on Tampa Bay with the longer week. It affords us the chance to introduce a game plan on Monday, go through the scouting report, and then come back on Wednesday and hone in on exactly what you want."

  • In this league, do you have to have "amnesia" week to week?

"Not at the expense of the things that you want to correct, but you do have to get on to the next game. I think it's important coming off of a win and a loss. You've heard me say that a number of times that you have a short period of time after the game is played to make corrections and get on to the next opponent, whether you win or lose. Chances are in a winning effort you still have a lot of corrections you need to make. You do that normally on a Monday, the players are off Tuesday, and when they come in Wednesday it's on to the next opponent. You emphasize the things that need correcting from the last game and quickly you get on to the next team."

  • From a psychological standpoint as well?

"I think so. You need to be able to re-energize, regroup and get ready to play another game, both physically and mentally. It's a long season. You're going to go through a stretch - you look back on the good teams that have gone on to the postseason and won Super Bowls - there are going to be stretches where you're going to have to fight through the schedule. For us it's moving on to the second week of the season and getting ready to play a tough team on the road."

  • What did you see that you could take as a positive from last week's game?

"I think the front guys on defense played pretty well. I thought the defensive tackles and Charles Grant played well. In the first half of that game, we did a good job of keeping them in check offensively. At that point, time of possession was pretty close. Obviously, you want more points offensively. We came up with the one field goal and the other field goal we missed, but there are some positives that you look at and want to draw from. When you're correcting and watching tape with the players, you're talking about things that are happening in a negative fashion as well as in a positive fashion."

  • Everyone wants to say how important each individual game is. Coming off a big loss, is this a big game?

"I think getting on to the next game is important for both of these teams. Both teams are coming off of road losses. What's important for us is being able to learn from the mistakes that hurt us last week and then move on to the next opponent. The best thing about the schedule in this league is that you get a chance to play again a week later. We talk about that, we harp on it following a win and the same thing applies following a loss - make the corrections and get on to the next opponent. Playing Tampa Bay in Tampa is a tough challenge for us."

  • Since realignment, the Saints and Buccaneers have been two teams that regardless of records have gone hard after each other in hard-hitting games. Do you expect more of that this week?

"I think so. When you play in the division, there's a sense of urgency in those games. They carry more importance because it is a division team. This is a team that a year ago we had two tough battles against and were lucky to come out of last year's home game with a win."

  • How much would you like to go more downfield in the passing game?

"I think it's important that you have enough vertical stretch throwing the ball and hopefully the coverages that we see throughout the course of the game give us those opportunities. We have some guys with speed and some guys that can make plays down the field, but it still comes down to all the little things with execution, protection, being efficient running the football - all the things we've preached to this date."

  • Are you pleased with what you're seeing as far as execution in practice?

"I think today we had a pretty crisp practice. I thought the guys had some energy and I think they understand the significance of preparing during the course of the week and trying to improve. These practices are obviously opportunities to simulate the opponent, but they're also opportunities to get better."

  • Cadillac Williams may not play this week. Can you discuss preparing for the Bucs' running attack?

"They do a good job with a lot of formations. They have some real talented players. Obviously, Cadillac is one of their bell-cows and we've seen a lot of (Michael) Pittman in the past and he's someone who is a tough, explosive runner. We'll have our work cut out for us. You have to prepare for the scheme and do as best you can to simulate what you're going to get within each formation."

  • In trying to stop Jeff Garcia, do you look back on the playoff game last year or do you look more at what he's done in Tampa during the preseason?

"You study the player with the team you're playing, but our players have a lot of respect for him and understand the threat he possesses. Having seen him firsthand not too long ago in the postseason, he's someone that is very dangerous not only in the pocket but he does a great job of extending plays with his feet. He's a tough competitor."