Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Atlanta Falcons
Dec. 15, 2011 on NFL Network
“Quarterbacks are judged by what you do in the playoffs. I have to do something in the playoffs.” – Falcons QB Matt Ryan on where he fits among the elite QBs
“We talk about most valuable players; that’s the most valuable player. He’s all that team has.” – Michael Irvin on Jaguars RB Maurice Jones-Drew
Special Saturday Edition of Thursday Night Football Dec. 17 –
Dallas Cowboys at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
From Atlanta Play-by-play Announcer: Brad Nessler; Game Analyst: Mike Mayock; Sideline: Alex Flanagan
Host: Rich Eisen; Analysts: Marshall Faulk, Steve Mariucci, Deion Sanders, Michael Irvin
Reporters: Alex Flanagan, Stacey Dales
From Los Angeles Host: Kara Henderson; Analysts: Sterling Sharpe, Kurt Warner, Jay Glazer
QUOTES FROM THURSDAY NIGHT KICKOFF PRESENTED BY SEARS PREGAME SHOW
Deion Sanders 1-on-1 with Falcons Quarterback Matt Ryan:
Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan sat down for a 1-on-1 interview with NFL Network analyst Deion Sanders:
“Quarterbacks are judged by what you do in the playoffs. I have to do something in the playoffs. All of those guys, they’re all Super Bowl MVPs and I’m not there yet. I’m going to work as hard as I possibly can to get there.” – Ryan on where he fits among Tom Brady, Eli Manning, Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees
“I certainly think so. We have everything we need; we just need to bring that to fruition. We need to play the way we’re capable of playing.” – Ryan on if the Falcons can win a Super Bowl
“Sometimes the voice raises and lets those guys know that I’m there. But at the same time, you don’t want to panic and that’s one of the things that I think our team has. Regardless of what’s going on – inconsistent play, good play, bad play – nobody panics. When you have talent and you guys that have that resolve, you always have a chance.” – Ryan on what he tells the team at halftime of games
“I haven’t had a problem with it. We’ve got unselfish guys, guys that want to win first. I keep telling them don’t worry about your touches in the first quarter, your touches in the second quarter – worry about the touches at the end of the game. The ball is going to find everybody.” – Ryan on making sure the Falcons’ skill position players get enough touches
“That’s not what we wanted to do. That’s kind of a good synopsis of what we’ve done all year: we’ve been inconsistent. But it’s not how you start; it’s all about how you finish.” – Ryan on trailing 23-7 at halftime last week against the Carolina Panthers
“It’s fair, and in the NFL there is going to be some inconsistent play because there are a lot of good players that you’re going against week in and week out. You can’t let that affect you.” – Ryan on critics who say he has played inconsistently this season
“That’s a tough task. You have to score points and you have to play your very best game. But the thing about the NFL is you just need to be the best team on the field that day. It’s just about peaking at the right time and being the best team on the field that day.” – Ryan on how to beat the Green Bay Packers
To view Deion Sanders’ 1-on-1 interview with Falcons QB Matt Ryan, please visit:
Preview of Melissa Stark’s 1-on-1 with Jets Quarterback Mark Sanchez:
New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez sat down with NFL Network’s Melissa Stark in an interview that will air on NFL Total Access Friday, December 16 at 7:00 PM ET.
Below is a preview of the interview:
On his relationship with Jets head coach Rex Ryan:
“One of the best coaches you could ever ask for, especially as a young quarterback. He makes things tough on you at times because he knows how much I care about this team and my position here, and how much it means to me.”
On Rex Ryan giving backup quarterback Mark Brunell reps in practice:
“No [it doesn’t upset me]. He’s doing what he thinks is best for the team.”
To view the preview of Stark’s interview with Sanchez, please visit:
Jacksonville Jaguars-Atlanta Falcons Pregame Analysis and Quotes:
“This man is almost 50 percent of the offense. We talk about most valuable players; that’s the most valuable player. He’s all that team has.” – Michael Irvin on Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew, who leads the NFL in rushing yards
“They wanted to be a team that was all about big plays, but when you watch Matt Ryan play that’s not the kind of quarterback he is. He’s a very ball-control, methodical type quarterback, very good in rhythm, and that’s what they’ve gotten back to. Early on I don’t think they were doing that; I think they were asking Matt Ryan to do too much and do things that are out of character for him.” – Kurt Warner on Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan
“If this team is going to fix their problems I need to see more and more of Michael Turner, and then the play-action pass with Matt Ryan to Roddy White and Julio Jones will take into effect.” – Marshall Faulk on the 8-5 Atlanta Falcons
“We could talk about Julio Jones – as a young guy he has a lot to learn about how to play this game and he makes some dynamic plays – but [Matt Ryan] needs an offseason. That lockout hurt a great deal for him and Julio Jones and the ability to get that deep game going. Once they get time to work on it, they’ll get that going and they will be a dangerous team.” – Michael Irvin on Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan and wide receiver Julio Jones
“You need to have a guy that you can rely on to throw the football to and you know that he’s going to be open, he’s going to get open. I don’t see that out there for Blaine Gabbert right now.” – Marshall Faulk on Jaguars rookie quarterback Blaine Gabbert
“I talked to him before the game and there are a lot of things he has to improve upon. He works at it; that’s the good thing. But he’s got to make sure that this team believes in him. He earns the respect of his teammates by battling through all of these ups and downs.” – Steve Mariucci on Jaguars quarterback Blaine Gabbert
“I like the New York Giants and it hinges on what I saw on Sunday night. It hinged on a team that knew how to finish and another team that has problems finishing.” – Kurt Warner on which team will win the NFC East: the New York Giants or Dallas Cowboys
“I would say absolutely, and the only reason I would say that is when you start to take a look at this system, it is a system predicated on speed and location, of everybody being in the right spot. When you look at the Green Bay Packers, they can’t afford to rest guys for four weeks, because remember they’re going to get one week off because they’re going to be either a one or two seed.” – Sterling Sharpe on if the Green Bay Packers should aim to go undefeated
“If he’s going to have success against the Patriots, they need to go back to the unconventional offense that we saw earlier in the year.” – Kurt Warner on Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow facing the New England Patriots defense
“New England, if they can put points on the board that will change a whole lot of the dynamic of Tim Tebow and his late-game heroics.” – Sterling Sharpe on the New England Patriots preparing for quarterback Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos
“You have to pack your defense and your running game when you go on the road; that’s exactly what the 49ers have, that’s exactly what the Saints do not have. That’s why the Saints need that second seed. They need to play as many games as they can in that dome.” – Michael Irvin on which team needs the No. 2 seed in the NFC more: the San Francisco 49ers or New Orleans Saints
“I hear people saying should Jason Garrett be fired? I want to upchuck when I hear that. This is a guy that took a 1-7 football team [last year] and has turned this team a year later into controlling their own destiny right now. When we talk about where the Cowboys are, they are in control of their own destiny and I think any team in the National Football League would appreciate that this late in the season.” – Michael Irvin on the Dallas Cowboys
“The very same reason we are enamored with Tim Tebow is the very same reason I blame Tony Romo, because in the fourth quarter when plays need to be made, your quarterback has to make those plays. In the fourth quarter, Tebow will not turn the football over and he will get the football to his playmakers to make plays.” – Marshall Faulk on Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo
“I just don’t think at 8-5 you can be very dangerous playing small-ball in the playoffs. You’re going to have to score points, you’re going to have to throw it down the field.” – Sterling Sharpe on if the New York Jets are a dangerous team
“They’re starting to get key people hurt. [Offensive] tackle Joe Staley, Patrick Willis, even Frank Gore is injured. They’re in trouble because they’re starting to get injuries to their key people and this is not the time you want your backups in the game.” – Sterling Sharpe on if the San Francisco 49ers are in trouble
On NFL.com the following video clips from Thursday Night Kickoff Presented by Sears are available for viewing:
On the Playoff Bubble – With three games remaining in the regular season, the Thursday Night Kickoff Presented by Sears crew examine the playoff hopes of the teams on the bubble.
Deion’s 21st and Prime – Deion Sanders checks in from the corner of 21st and Prime for a road edition of “Let’s Go Primetime,” counting down the top five catches this season.
Falcons Back on Track? – Have Matt Ryan and the Falcons fixed their problems heading in the last three weeks of the season? The Thursday Night Kickoff Presented by Sears crew discusses.
Belichick vs. Tebow – Former Patriots linebacker Willie McGinest joins Kurt Warner and Sterling Sharpe for a discussion on how New England’s head coach Bill Belichick plans to stop quarterback Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos.
NFC East Race – Which team will win the NFC East after a heated Week 14 battle between the Giants and Cowboys?
M&M: Packers or Tim Tebow? – Marshall Faulk and Michael Irvin debate which is the bigger story: the undefeated Green Bay Packers or Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow?
Will Suh Change his Ways? – Sterling Sharpe and Jay Glazer break down if Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh will play differently this Sunday following his two-game suspension.
Are the 49ers in Trouble? – Following their loss to the Arizona Cardinals, are the San Francisco 49ers in trouble?
Special Saturday Edition of Thursday Night Football on December 17:
DALLAS COWBOYS AT TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS — 8:00 PM ET
NEXT WEEK ON NFL NETWORK’S THURSDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL:
HOUSTON TEXANS AT INDIANAPOLIS COLTS — 8:00 PM ET
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