LOS ANGELES CHARGERS vs. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS
Sunday, Sept. 8, 2019 | ROKiT Field at Dignity Health Sports Park | Carson, Calif.
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS HEAD COACH ANTHONY LYNN
"We knew that game was going to take four quarters, but it actually took five. That team takes on the reflection of its head coach. They have a great leader over there in [Colts Head Coach] Frank Reich. They play hard and they never give up and our locker room is very similar, so it was a hell of a contest today. It's an exciting game. I'm just glad we came out on the winning side and trust me — it took every man in that locker room to get this done today."
On RB Austin Ekeler:
"From what I saw a little while ago, I thought he played well. I thought he broke tackles, I thought he made some plays. I thought he showed speed through the hole, he looked good, man.
"That's what he's showed all along, he's just never done it from a lead role. [RB Justin] JJ [Jackson] came in and gave him some rest and JJ ran well. We use those guys as a tandem and I thought [Running Backs Coach] Alfredo Roberts rode those guys perfectly today and I like what I saw."
On giving the running backs space:
"Absolutely, just touches. We try to give our playmakers touches and that can be screens, that can be check-downs — just get them in space and then always run them between the tackles."
On concerns about the game:
"We've got to stop the run. In the first half, we did a good job with that. We knew coming in — they have said they want to be a top-five rushing team. We held them to 2.7 yards [per carry] in the first half. In the second half, they averaged about six so we've got to do better at stopping the run. That concerned me a little bit, but the effort was outstanding."
On the second half:
"They were down and I knew they were going to come out fighting. We didn't do a good enough job with getting our guys ready to go because we did not match their tempo or intensity. We've got to come out at 0-0 and let's win the second half. That's got to be our mindset."
On DB Desmond King II:
"He gets tons of reps in practice. They don't have to be preseason, but in scrimmages and practice, he gets tons of reps. He has to make that correction. I know he is trying to make a play, he is a playmaker but sometimes you have to fair catch and just take the ball where they punt it."
On P Ty Long:
"That whole kicking operation was outstanding. We had a new holder in [QB] Tyrod [Taylor], who's never done it in a game, and [P] Ty [Long] stepped up in kicking. Ty's a kicker by trade, so that didn't surprise me, but just the whole operation I thought was good today."
On QB Philip Rivers:
"I thought Philip threw the football well. I thought he converted some critical third downs. He had the interception down in the end zone, but sometimes it's not what it appears to be. We have everybody doing their job, that safety's not where he was, so that happens, they made a play."
On the offensive line:
"[Colts DE Justin] Houston's a good rusher and we knew that was going to be a tough matchup for [T] Trent [Scott]. Trent's a young play, a first-year starter. I think he got better as the game went on and that was really encouraging. I like what I saw from him in the second half, but he did have some struggles early."
On WR Mike Williams:
"I have no idea how serious that is right now. Hopefully, it's not too serious because we need Mike."
On CB Michael Davis:
"He has a hamstring right now, so hopefully it's not too bad."
On CB Brandon Facyson:
"They went at it just like I knew they would. When there comes a new guy off the bench, they run right at him, but he settled down. I thought, when he settled down, his coverage was tighter and he was able to make a play in the second half. It didn't surprise me at all they went right at him, so he's got to know that. He's a new guy, they'll want to do that next week as well."
On building off experiences:
"I know when you put yourself in those situations and you have success, I know it breeds confidence. I know these guys believe if we get a close game, they believe they're going to win and that's good, but we don't have to have close games all the time."
On the locker room:
"It's been really good. Like I said, it took every guy in that locker room to win today."
On Ekeler breaking tackles on the screen pass for a touchdown:
"Yeah, it happened right there in front of me. He just kept his pad level down and they were going for a turnover, and he ran right through them."
On Ekeler's ability to break tackles:
"It's his leverage. He plays with outstanding leverage and, like I've said before, pound-for-pound, he is the strongest man on our team."
On concerns on Ekeler's hurdle moves:
"I was only concerned that he didn't get the first down."
On K Michael Badgley:
"No, you just can't rush that because it is something that can linger all year. It's pretty risky going into a game with one kicker. A guy that's kicking off and a guy that's punting and kicking field goals and extra points, so we can't get Michael back soon enough."
On a potential curse with kickers:
"I don't know, but adversity comes this way and we just deal with it. We're used to it and we overcome."
On having two kickers:
"[P] Ty [Long], that was a great signing seasoned by [General Manager] Tom [Telesco]. This is a guy that's an athlete. Not only can he kick, but he's a pretty good punter too — and he can throw."
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS QUARTERBACK PHILIP RIVERS
On the team's performance:
"I thought it was a gritty, team win — that's the best way I can describe it. I thought it was similar to wins we had last year. I know how we say seasons are separate — and they are — there were some guys out there playing today who weren't part of the team last year. We are a different team, it's a new team. I think some of the experiences from last year, some of the adversity, close games, maybe helped us today. We can do a better job finishing, not making it turn into that, but when it does do we let it reel away from us or do we say, "Hold on, let's stop right now and let's end it." We were able to do that, offensively. It was a good team win all the way around, in every phase."
On RB Austin Ekeler:
"I just think, just like for quarterbacks and receivers, different things — feeling route timing, all that — that takes times. Those reps are huge. As an offensive line, working together, the more they work together on double teams, I think that's huge. I think as running backs, the reps they get and thinking about how many more reps Austin and [RB Justin] JJ [Jackson] have gotten behind this offensive line over the last two, three, four months has really paid off. Austin was a heck of a player for us last year, so was JJ, but they made so many cuts today that were so smooth and were big-time runs. Credit to the guys up front. There were some creases, they did a heck of a job blocking, but the after-contact yards, the screen touchdown that Austin had, there's not many backs making that run, I don't think, in this league — so heck of a run. Just all the way around. [T] Trent [Scott] stepping up and playing. None of us played perfect, we all made mistakes, including the big turnover I had — but we all collectively 1-through-46 chipped in and found a way."
On the first time Austin Ekeler impressed him:
"It's funny, he was wearing number three that year. For whatever reason — I had met him, I had talked to him — I kept asking [former QB] Kellen [Clemens], 'What is three's name?' I will never forget that offseason, I kept asking him and he would say, 'Austin'. It just took me a while to get to where it clicks. You know, certain times you see guys and you nail it, but he was one guy for whatever reason. We get going, and I said 'Shoot, this three is pretty good.' 3 ended up being 30, who we all know as Austin Ekeler, and he has been a playmaker for us over the last three years. I don't think anybody was surprised with what plays he made today. There is something, nobody can see unless you're out there with him, that it's just not too big for him. His face and his eyes, and the communication, he's just playing. It's like we're in the backyard. I saw that early on as a young player and that only has continued to be steady and be the case. It's fun being out there with him."
On the overtime rule and his approach:
"I think the big thing is switching back. We were on the sideline and had to say that we are back in regular game-mode. We went from watching to saying, 'If we get this stop, we will take a knee,' once it got under 50 seconds to, 'If they score and don't get the two-point conversion, we will still take a knee.' Then we have 38 seconds left, let's go get a field goal. We're in that two-minute mode, a little bit of that — not desperation because we were tied — and then shifting back to being in regular mode. Let's mix some runs, let's mix play-actions and drop-backs. That's what you saw. We had two completions in that last drive, I think, and the rest were runs — maybe there were three. There was a third completion to [WR] Keenan [Allen]. We ran the ball and finished it off in the end zone. I think the biggest thing when we get to the red zone was realizing even though three is good, let's end the game. Let's end it right now. I think the guys up front did a great job. We ran that run where we scored on — don't hold me to it — but at least seven to nine times throughout the game, the exact same run. The guys were blocking well. It was a good run for us. It was our two tight [end] personnel. You go from spreading it out to saying, 'Let's play old school a little bit.'"
On whether or not his plan was to give Austin the ball in the endzone:
"We were going to stick to our same red zone plan. We weren't going to tighten up there because I just turned it over but the goal was to score a touchdown. It wasn't let's pound it and kick the field goal and see what they do, but it was to score a touchdown. It was nice to get in when we did."
On the offense:
"It goes back to our flexible group, our diverse group who can adapt to different formations. All of a sudden [WR] Mike [Williams] is out, [WR] Dontrelle [Inman] has been here for a week. All of a sudden, we are asking our team to run this, [WR] Travis [Benjamin] you run that. [T] Trent [Scott] stepped in for [T] Russell [Okung]. It's moving parts. It doesn't make us say, 'What are we going to do now?' We're going to go. We're going to run what we run. We will help where we have to help. Guys will pick up slack where they need to pick up slack. More than just the next man up thing, we really believe in the next man up. That is more important sometimes than the next man up, is that we actually believe in the next man up. We're going to find a way. There is no drop off in our belief and then the guys actually step up and do it. The combination of that is pretty big."
On the team identity:
"I think what [Head] Coach [Anthony] Lynn wanted to establish was that we were going to run the ball and be tough. There is no question that the team has taken that on. It is our identity. I do think that is who we wanted to be for the last 15 years. If you look offensively for the last 15 years, we played best when we were balanced. We've had rushing leaders, we won rushing titles and those are the years we played the best. I think within those seasons we have games where you throw it 40 times and find a way to win. When we are balanced, there is no question that is when we play our best. That is who we are, we're not a spread it out, dink-and-dunk team. We are a balanced team. We can dink-and-dunk it, we can line up in two tights and pound it, we can use the hard run-action and get big chunks like we did to [TE] Hunter [Henry] and Keenan [Allen]."
On his interception:
"I saw him. I can't say that I didn't see him. I saw him, I just didn't think that was any way that he could get there. You saw a little pocket there with Keenan. I thought that he was going to kind of body him up. I thought there was going to be a collision there with Keenan hanging onto it. Before we broke the huddle, I looked at the score and the time, I said, 'Three points is good, don't turn it over.' About 10 seconds later, I turned it over. Yeah, I'm responsible for that, no question. In hindsight, I shouldn't have thrown it, but I think there are times where you say, 'Great play.' That guy made a great play."
On the close win:
"I think it is good for us in the long run. Look all around the league, it is all one-point games. There are a lot of close games. That is what this league is, each and every week. We don't get bonus points for how we won the game. We find ways on how to win them. It all counts the same. You can't win them all unless you win the first one. We were able to get it done today."
On being a while since Chargers won the home opener:
"It's been what, two out of the last seven, I think. We won the opener in 2015 at home against Detroit. I don't know how long it had been before then. I know we didn't win in '13 and '14, we didn't win '16, '17, '18. So it's good to win the first one. Because if not, I think you go 'Oh, we've got to win this one.' It can create a little bit of a — not that you ever relax, we're not going to be relaxed this week — but it can create a little bit of a negative vibe when you don't win the opener, because then you go, 'We can't start 0-2.' It feels like that, rather than, 'Let's get on a run, let's get on a roll, let's clean up a bunch of things,' but it's nice to clean them up coming off a win rather than losing the opener."
On Colts K Adam Vinatieri:
"It's rare. A guy that has made as many as he's made in as many big games as he's made them in, and really as many attempts as he's had. You're going to miss some every now and then, it just so happens it's been in our favor a handful of times. He's going to make more than he misses, so it was good we didn't let it end up on his leg because I certainly didn't think he was going to miss another one."
On WR Keenan Allen:
"If a defensive back's back is turned, and it is Keenan or Mike [Williams] especially — and I believe all of our receivers can go do that. Travis [Benjamin] has shown even that ability to break it up, when it's ours or nobody's. Third-and-long, great blitz pick up — when you watch that one back, you are going to see six guys protecting and all of them doing their job unbelievably. I had to move around a little bit. I maybe could have put it out there a little further, but when his back was turned it was here and I wanted to throw him that high, straight ball and hopefully either get interference or him come down with it, and he was able to come down with it."
On what he needs to clean up:
"I think outside the turnover — obviously, you don't want to do that down in the red area in that situation of the game. I think there's going to be a couple where maybe we had sacks or we had pressure sack fumbles that we were able to get back, that maybe I can get the ball out. Get off of some of the things we had been developing down the field and check it down. That's probably something that's been a strong suit of mine over the years, is just finding the outlet and getting rid of it when things are kind of hairy in the pocket, so I think I can help us a little bit there. We're good on third downs. We need to continue that for 15 more because when you're 7-of-11 on third down,s and you keep converting, good things will happen with the players we have."
On TE Hunter Henry:
"He's awesome. He had limited opportunities today, and I think all four times thrown to him he caught all four of them. He had four for 60, a 15-yard average is good. We had some things where we tried to get him some more opportunities. That's just the way it goes for this group and I think we all in that locker room know it. Keenan's going to get his share of targets, and then maybe Mike for the big day. Maybe Austin. I mean, Austin had 96 yards receiving. Obviously, the screen was a huge play. I thought we spread it around pretty good. Mike had the big play — it ended up being the play he got hurt — but the big end on the second-and-20 or whatever it was. It got us down there, and then Keenan caught the dover — the deep over down there right before the interception. If I threw the ball a little more out front of Keenan on that third-and-two, he scores on that one and we're not even facing that pass in the back of the end zone. It's all going to start running together if I keep talking. That was a good win."
On running with Ekeler late:
"The guys were blocking it well and it matched up well formationally with their fronts, so we just stayed with it. I think it's a sign for a team that can run the football well — obviously our defense is going to want to clean some things up late in the second half of the run game, not to bring them up. If you run it well, whatever is working don't dabble in the other stuff. Keep running. I think Indy probably did some of the same stuff late in the game, but whatever's working keep rolling, and that's what worked for us."
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS WIDE RECEIVER KEENAN ALLEN
On importance of winning the opener:
"It's big. Me and [QB Philip] Phil [Rivers] were just talking about it. To come out and get that first win, if you don't get it this week, then the next week you are like all right, we gotta win next week, and then like all right we gotta get it next week. Once you get it, you're like, 'Okay, now we can roll and get into our groove and start taking it easy and calm down.'"
On RB Austin Ekeler:
"Great. He's always been that way. He's a great back, [he is] explosive out of the backfield breaking tackles. [He is] a hard runner, just having that motor and coming in and being that juice we need. We needed the big play and he sprung free."
On how running backs Justin Jackson and Ekeler ran the ball:
"I thought it was great without watching film. The holes that they hit, the third-and-ones we picked up. [FB Derek] Watt got some runs on third down and I thought we did a great job on that. Feeding them all the ball, getting them all touches was great too."
On advantage of having an experienced locker room:
"I think a lot. It helps us hold each other accountable. We know how each other feels. We know how each other is going to react. So when we get out there, we don't have a problem telling each other try it like this, do it like this, don't do this, don't do that. We can learn from the game and learn with each other throughout the game."
On how it feels to see RBs Justin Jackson and Austin Ekeler succeed:
"It's major. To have the backup backs come in and be successful as they are with some of the backup offensive line as well. It speaks volume to our game plan and execution."
On winning games late:
"It speaks volume to the NFL. No week is taken for granted. No team is going to be a slouch and every game you're going to have to play your 'A' game and always 60 minutes of good football."
On if something happened to start winning the close games:
"I think it's the way we practice, the way we work, learning from those times we lost. We learned from all of it and come to play."
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS DEFENSIVE END JOEY BOSA
On the victory:
"Great job pulling it out in the end, but our defense had a bunch of chances to get us off the field. We're going to have to clean that up. We're going to have to finish teams faster than overtime. We came out in the second half where we were up 14 points and we have to just step up on their throats and finish the game. I'm proud of our guys, proud of [RB Austin] Ek [Ekeler] — hell of a game. [It was a] big time for him to step up. Like you said, a win is a win."
On changes from last season:
"We'll take it but we always have to get better. I see as a defense how many opportunities, third-and-20, there was a bunch of times where we could get off the field. [On] the two-point conversion we need to stop them. We rallied, our offense did an unbelievable job in overtime driving the ball down the field and we got the win."
On the importance of winning week 1:
"I don't really know. [I] haven't won one yet. I think we did a really good job last year after a couple losses and went on that streak. I think the morale of the team after a long offseason, coming in and winning your first game, it means a lot."
On Colts QB Jacoby Brissett:
"He did a good job. They did a good job getting the ball in the hands of their playmakers. Those running backs are good. He's in a world where he's stepping into that position after what happened there, but props to him. He did a good job."
On the defense on the sideline during overtime:
"I'm just hoping that we don't have to go on the field again. I'm tired — I played four quarters already. We're just cheering for the offense. I was on a knee watching. It's hard for me. I can't watch sometimes, I just tell people to tell me what happened like on third-and-one. We were all cheering for the [offense], hoping that they drove down and scored, but if they kicked a field goal or turned it over we'd be ready to go."
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS LINEBACKER THOMAS DAVIS SR.
On recording 14 tackles:
"For me, it's all about getting 15 tackles. That one that I missed on the sideline proved to be pivotal in the outcome of this game. It's one of those things, you watch on film and you've got to be better from. In those situations, when a team is desperate to get in the end zone, we've got to do a much better job. [S Adrian] AP [Phillips] did a good job of slowing him down. I'm the cleanup guy, so I've got to be able to make that play and finish it."
On facing Colts QB Jacoby Brissett instead of Andrew Luck:
"It's very important. You want to start the season out the right way, especially at home. We knew coming in that they were a good team. You heard a lot of people talking about Andrew Luck's decision. At the end of the day, [Jacoby] Brissett was taking all the reps in the preseason. He was taking all the reps in practice. So, we knew coming in that he was going to be ready to play. [We knew] that this team was going to be ready to play and they were going to rally around him. You saw that in this game."
On winning in close fashion:
"That's how this game goes. Most games in this league come down to the fourth quarter. The team that plays the best during [the last two, three minutes of the game] usually ends up winning the game. Fortunate enough for us, we were able to pull this one off. We'll watch the film, correct some of the mistakes and look to be better next week."
On the team's resolve:
"Even before I got here, this team was in tough positions last year and they were able to pull those win out. I think it's something they've learned from being in those positions. Our coaches do a great job of putting us in those situations in practice. It showed up today.
On Colts RB Marlon Mack:
"He made some plays. We as a defense didn't fit some stuff right. We'll watch the film. We'll correct those mistakes. We just can't allow that to happen. You can't allow teams to come in and rush the ball for 200 yards against you. You just can't do it in this league."
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS RUNNING BACK AUSTIN EKELER
On the game-winning touchdown:
"They just overplayed it to the front side and it opened up a seam through the backside and ran through a tackle and got into the end zone. That's how we want to finish overtime anytime we get into that situation."
On the pressure for the running back group:
"I wouldn't necessarily say it was pressure, but now we're just in that spot more. We always put pressure on ourselves because we're trying to make ourselves known in this league and establish ourselves and play the best we can. We're always putting that self-pressure on ourselves. Now, it just showed up on the field today."
On his performance:
"I feel like I made most of my plays when they came. The plays came to me and I made the ones I was supposed to."
On the team's overtime performance:
"There's so much work that goes into just being here. Going into my third year and being in this position, it was a special moment today. For our offense, and our team, to come together like that and get a win in overtime, it's something I'll never forget. That's the second year in a row that I opened with a season-opening touchdown, so that was a little special to me too in a weird way."
On how he feels physically with the carries:
"Physically, I feel good. With my body type, I'm lower to the ground, so I take less hits on my ankles and knees. I think it's really helped me out throughout my entire career, as far as injuries."
On being versatile:
"My rookie year, I feel like, I was a third down back. I was catching balls, going in and protecting in the passing game. It's always been a part of what I'm emphasizing through my game and just being more of a football player, not just a running back. I can do it all, special teams as well."
On the team being able to finish the game:
"Throughout these couple years, we've just developed together. I feel like it's the relationships we've had by keeping coaches and players around. You start to develop that chemistry and really get to know your players, what you can and cannot do and what your strengths and weaknesses are. As you develop as a team, you overcome these games."
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS PUNTER TY LONG
On sharing the field with Colts K Adam Vinatieri:
"It's like I told him after the game, I literally can remember sitting in my parents' house watching him make game winners when I was 10 years old. That shows you, as good as we all are, that's the greatest of all time. He had an off-day, but I promise you, he'll be back next week."
On making his Chargers debut:
"We had a good day. The protection was good. [QB] Tyrod [Taylor] was awesome. It was a big trust and feel. He did good and [LS] Cole [Mazza], our long snapper, he did great, protection was great. We just went out there and did it."
On adjusting from the CFL to the NFL:
"I'll be brutally honest with you. It felt exactly like a CFL game. The speed felt the same, everything. I came here as a punter, a kickoff guy. I didn't think I was going to be hitting field goals. You talk about something I've dreamed about my whole life. For about three years, no one wanted me. I couldn't get a workout. Washington cut me. Pittsburgh cut me before I kicked a ball. I went 10 months without anything. So, I'm not supposed to be here. I'm blessed."
On becoming the first player since 1997 to make a field goal, an extra point and attempt a punt in their NFL debut:
"That's cool. I did not know that. I'm blessed. I've worked hard doing all three my whole life. I did not know that stat. That's really cool to be a part of NFL history."
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS HEAD COACH FRANK REICH
"That was tough. Tough loss. When you go on the road against a team that was 12-4 last year — a very good football team with an elite quarterback — they made the plays that they needed to make to win. I give them credit. They're a very well-coached team. [Chargers Head Coach] Anthony Lynn, I think the world of him, and I think that's a good football team and they played well. They deserve the win. It's hard to say, but they deserve the win."
On the team's performance:
"There were times where, in all three phases, that we just weren't as sharp as we need to be. Then, we gave them second chances. That's what's hard. You can't give a good team second chances, in all three phases. Every time, they made us pay. That's what I said to [Chargers QB] Philip Rivers after the game, they didn't mess one of those opportunities up. Then when we made a mistake on offense — we had one or two critical mistakes on offense — it led to three and outs. Other times, it felt like we were running the football the way we want to run the football. [QB] Jacoby [Brissett] played very well. There's a lot of positive things. The defense made some plays, some good stuff out there, but it's not good enough."
On K Adam Vinatieri:
"He's the one guy I'm not worried about. We have the greatest kicker of all-time. He didn't have a good day. There were a lot of guys that didn't. We all own what we put out there. That's what we talked about in there. In every phase where you look at it, we all made a play, we all missed a play or two — that cost us. That's just the way it is when you go against a good football team."
On if Vinatieri has any physical issues:
"I don't think so. Like I said, I don't know what to tell you — that's the least of my worries right now."
On if there was an adjustment in the second half with the running game:
"The key was just being patient. We knew, that was part of the plan. Part of it — and we talked about this as an offense —this team, we wanted to come out and dink-and-dunk — a short, controlled pass game. A lot of the analytics said that this team in the first quarter was pretty good against the rush. Especially the first drive or two, running the ball and you got everybody crowded up. They knew we wanted to run the football, they were crowding the box. So we just said, 'Hey we're going to be patient with the run game,' even when we got behind. I think that helped us out to get us back in it."
On QB Jacoby Brissett:
"Yeah, I thought Jacoby played really well. I can't remember too many mistakes that he made. I didn't look at the stat line, so I don't know, but he played well. Even more so than that, he was in complete control. He was poised, he knew what he wanted when there were discussions on the sideline about this or that. He knew what he wanted and he made it work. That was a good start for Jacoby."
On Brissett during the final Colts drive:
"He was great. He had no heartbeat, it went like that — it was steady. Very poised, just felt very confident throughout the whole drive."
On losing early in the season:
"It's heartbreaking. When you're on the road against a good football team and you feel like you did a lot of good things to beat a good football team, but you just didn't do quite enough. We'll learn from it. We'll make no excuses and get ready for next week."
On RB Marlon Mack:
"We felt good about our run game. We want to give our offensive coaching staff a lot of credit. They did a good job playing the run. The guys up front just executed. I remember one time in the game talking to [G/C Quenton] Q [Nelson], I usually always get a parameter on Q, and I don't remember if it was in the second quarter or the beginning of the third quarter. I said, 'How's it going out there,' and he just said, 'Just keep calling them.'"
On things a quarterback needs to think about during big drives late in the game:
"Understanding that you got more time than you think. Don't panic. Don't think you have to make it all in one play. Take the under the knee stuff when you can. We're still going to call a run and don't try to get greedy on one play. You have plenty of time. Keep your poise. [Brissett] did a great job."
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS QUARTERBACK JACOBY BRISSETT
On the range of emotions this game:
"I mean — you experience every emotion. It's a tough way to end it. A lot of things to build on. You know, just the resiliency of our group. To come out and finish that two-minute drive at the end and to convert on the two-point conversion. I thought we did a heck of a job up front today. I know for sure that won't go unnoticed."
On how bad he wanted to get on the field during overtime:
"I mean, you wanted to — what'd we go? Heads? We wanted it to be heads. You know, we had the momentum. Unfortunately, we just didn't get another chance."
On the team's self-inflicted mistakes:
"I mean, like you said, it's self-inflicted. You know, it's nothing that they did. It was all us. From me dropping the snap — I can probably catch a snap with one hand right now, you know what I'm saying? Certain things like that versus a good football team like the Chargers — you can't do that at all. This is the result when things like that happen."
On not having the opportunity to take the field in overtime:
"It's tough, but we trust our defense. We're over there. We're fine, so we're just waiting for our opportunity and just stand in the game. Like I said, unfortunately we didn't get that opportunity."
On the team's last drive in the fourth quarter:
"I think [Head Coach] Frank [Reich], [Offensive Coordinator] Nick Sirianni and [Quarterbacks Coach] Marcus Brady — they just do such a good job of drilling that and beating that into you. Our plays are going to come. We have good players, so you throw it to [WR] T.Y. [Hilton] on a shallow where he's supposed to be tackled for a 10-yard gain and the clock is supposed to be running, but he scores a touchdown. It was great for me to see it because to be honest, I wanted to throw it deep. I saw [TE] Eric [Ebron] in the back and it's hard to pass that up, but you know the discipline. You know, trust in coaching, trust in technique and things will happen."
On how they can build off this loss:
"I mean, just you know the things that we know that we did to ourselves to put us in that situation. Towards the end, we cleaned up a lot of that up and you saw the results. We were playing good on defense. We were playing good in special teams and on offense. There's nothing that they did. It was all us. Don't get me wrong, they're a great team, but we did it to ourselves."
On what prepared him to be poised and calm:
On when he meditates:
"On the bus. The bathroom. Wherever I can."
On if he gained any confidence with this team despite the loss:
"We have a lot of good things to build off. We ran the ball for a lot of yards, which is — when you see that on Week 1, teams in Week 15 have to respect what we did in Week 1. Things like that just go unnoticed now, but long term — they're going to stuff the box in. You see we got a lot of good players outside. A lot of players made a lot of plays today. We have a lot of stuff to build off of. Nobody's trying to win the Super Bowl in Week 1. We'll just build off this. We have another game next week, so we got to get ready to go."
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS WIDE RECEIVER T.Y. HILTON
On Colts QB Jacoby Brissett:
"His confidence is only going to get better from here. First game out there he looked great, just like he looked in practice all week and training camp. He played phenomenal."
On the connection with Brissett:
"We had our best camp and it showed out there. I'm really proud of the way he played, especially the o-line and the running game. That was awesome. All started with the running game. [RB] Marlon [Mack] and the big guys up front did great. Jacoby did great."
"We thought we were going to win. Two hot offenses. We all know we beat ourselves today. We got to correct some of the things and we will be fine."
On what he's thinking about walking off the field:
"Just next week. This week we didn't accomplish our goals that we wanted to. So next week comes double with a division game. We should go look at the film and get better from there."
On the first touchdown of the day:
"That was great. We knew it was going to be there. Once we called it, we had great confidence in it and made it work."
On his second touchdown:
"I was not going down. As soon as he called it, I was going shallow. I looked back, saw the ball coming and said I'm not going down. I am just trying to make up for the previous play, the one I dropped. I just want to make a play for our team. They looked for me to make a play and I made a play."
On RB Marlon Mack:
"We started off slow and when he came on, he came on strong. The big [plays] he had to have, he gave it to us. The offensive line did a great job. They told us to run behind them. We kept running and they were giving it to us. They did a great job of moving guys back."
On the importance of the offensive line:
"It's great. Like I told you, if they kill me, the other guys are going to beat you and if you don't kill me, then I'm going to beat you. All-around game that we played we beat ourselves."
"We don't really care what anyone else thinks or says about him. As long as he goes out there and continues to do the things he does, especially what he did today, they will continue to talk about him, how good he can be. He knows how good he can be. The sky is the limit for him. He did terrific today. We just have to get better."
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS SAFETY MALIK HOOKER
On today's game:
"We came out and played the best defense that we could have, so we just need to get ready and get back in line for next week."
On what he saw change on the sideline going into overtime:
"We know the type of team that we are. We knew that we were going to fight from the beginning of the game to the end of the game and that's what we did. We were down by, I don't know how many, but we went out there and our offense was doing what they were supposed to do — getting the ball down the field and putting points on the board. I played a game where I could capitalize on opportunity and change the momentum of the game. From there, we just kept escalating up and at the end of the game, we just couldn't finish."
On what was running through his mind walking off the field:
"We left too many plays out there. We left way too many plays out there. We have to get back in the lab tomorrow, and throughout the week next week to get ready for our upcoming game next week. The next week we have to be 1-0, that's our model this year and was our model last year. We have to finish every week like its 0-0. Next week we have to be 1-0."
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS LINEBACKER DARIUS LEONARD
On his thoughts when Chargers started overtime with the ball:
"Take the ball away. A three-and-out takeaway — that's the motto every time we step on the field. It's three-and-out takeaway and we didn't do that. We let the team down defensively. You want the ball. You want to take the ball because you want the game in your hands — especially if you're on defense."
On K Adam Vinatieri's struggles:
" Everybody has that day. I had a bad day, he had a bad day, but we know that we're going to go back to the table every day of practice and we're going to work and work [so this] won't happen again."
On his thoughts running off the field:
"[I was thinking] about all the bad things that went down — all the missed tackles, winning on third [down], but getting a penalty — stuff like that. All the bad stuff that happened in that game, we still played and forced an overtime. That shows that, if we don't beat ourselves, we can be a very good team. We just need to step up, keep making plays, and don't shoot ourselves in the foot."
On if he feels the team has a quarterback:
"Oh yeah. I thought that before we even started this season. We have a quarterback. [QB Jacoby Brissett] did great, offensively. He had a great game and I think he's going to continue to do that."
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS RUNNING BACK MARLON MACK
On the opportunities the offensive line created today:
"A bunch, I mean most of the time I wasn't really getting touched till the second level. All I had to do was take care of the rest to get my job done."
On how WR T.Y. Hilton touchdown created momentum for two-point conversion:
"It definitely created a lot of momentum. As an offense we came together, once things started flowing, we were able to get it going and we [were able] to get it in there."
On QB Jacoby Brissett's start and the poise he showed:
"Definitely a strong start for him and us as a team. Things didn't go right this week, but we know what it'll take now to go into next week to get the win."
On his thoughts on the sideline going into overtime:
"It definitely felt like a second life. We knew we made mistakes early in the game and at the second half we knew we needed to come together and get things right. We got to overtime and just didn't get a chance to bounce back from it."
On his game plan coming out of halftime:
"Just an overall offensive game plan and to just keep doing what we were doing. For me, it was just to go out there and run the ball. The line created such big holes for me, I got to the second level and just had to do my job from there."
On handling today's loss:
"It is what it is. I mean its only Week 1 and things didn't go right. We know what it takes now. It was just one week."
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS KICKER ADAM VINATIERI
"I didn't help them out at all, so any one of those couple misses goes through and it's a different game. I feel kind of — obviously, I feel lousy because the guys played their guts off against a really good Chargers team and they played well enough to win and I didn't help them out."
On a potential toe injury:
"No, I'm fine. There's no excuses on that, I just didn't kick well."
On the locker room:
"Like I said, they all gave 100 percent and they worked their butts off and they did a nice job. There were a few things that didn't go our way but the majority of them were my lousy kicking, so I totally let them down."