Washington Football Team head coach Ron Rivera and seven players addressed the media following Washington's 27-20 loss to the Dallas Cowboys. Here's a closer look at their press conferences.
On what went wrong today:
"Well, we missed some opportunities early on. We had a four-down situation. I was trying to create some momentum and they made a big play out of it. It took us a little bit to recover from that. It was disappointing. We had some opportunities early on, but we just didn't convert it."
On what he takes away from this game:
"Ultimately, a tale of the two halves. We didn't play the way we're capable in the first half. You gotta give them credit. They made a couple of big plays. We didn't capitalize. We had a big interception. Unfortunately, we didn't do anything with it. They capitalized, put points on the board. Good football teams, you have to. Because if you don't, other good football teams will keep you from coming back."
On QB Taylor Heinicke's play:
"Well, I thought he had his moments. A couple times, I thought he was a little hesitant. I thought he held the ball a little bit more than he should have a couple times. But I thought he read some good reads. He tried to put the ball where he needed to put it a couple times and he did. And then I think he got kind of pressed a little bit. I'd like to see him get back to taking what's out there and making those throws that he's capable of."
On looking ahead to the Eagles game next week:
"Absolutely because we control our own destiny. We have an opportunity to do something. We got four games left, all four in the division. Some interesting things can happen. Somebody else can lose a game or two as well. And who knows? And I told our players that. We control it. We take them one at a time. We got Philly coming up. We know that. I told the guys we'll get through this tomorrow, and then we'll start focusing on getting ready for Philadelphia. It's one of those things, too, like I said, the Washington Football Team versus Dallas should be a big game like it was today. We just gotta play better."
On getting the opportunity to play:
"Bummed we didn't win. [LB] Cole [Holcomb] gave us a chance in the fourth quarter. We had a chance to win, so bummed we didn't do that. Personally, it was cool to get back on the field in a regular season game after my injury last year and just play. But, obviously bummed that we didn't win."
On the fumble at the end of the game:
"I was just trying to get the ball out to [WR] Adam [Humphries] late in the down, so that we could have a play on fourth down. Thought the ball went forward. I thought my knee was down but just thought I threw it forward."
On what he thought he executed well:
"I was happy with that drive that we scored points on. Being able to move the ball and keep the ball and score some points. With the score what it was at that time we were just trying to move the ball and play one play at a time and execute. So, I was happy with that but obviously didn't get a win."
On what prevented the running game from being effective in the early portion of the game:
"I feel like they just came to play that first half. We just couldn't get the ball going."
On if he felt like the offense was out of sync after not being able to run the ball effectively on the early downs:
"We weren't where we were for the past couple of weeks, but then we kept really going."
On how he bounces back from another fumble in a big spot:
"That's play. You know, it happens. [Expletive] happens. It can happen, but you just gotta shake it off and keep going."
On if Dallas Cowboys Coach Mike McCarthy guaranteeing a win changed their approach to the game:
"We didn't focus on that. It was a big game. We were coming off of four straight wins, so we needed to win. But at the end of the day, it is one game. We just gotta look forward to the next one."
On his touchdown catch:
"I think their defense was in cover 3, and I saw [CB Trevon] Diggs jump on a couple routes in the games. He got like eight or nine picks. So I saw him jump the route and it was a double move, so I knew I had him."
On how the offense differed in the 2nd half:
"We just came out with a different tempo and a different pace. We were down the half like what 21-0, 24-0. That was disrespectful. We just had to tighten up and get right."
On if the team's mindset changes going into next with Philadelphia:"At halftime, coach got us right. So now we just got to stay focused from Monday all the way to Sunday for Philadelphia."
On the team's response in the second half:
"It was two different teams out there. It was more emotional in the first half and a lot was going on, but then we came back and just stuck our heads down and played ball."
On what he will take away from the first half as the team heads to Philadelphia next week:
"Keeping the emotions under control and keep everybody steady, but at the same time just doing our job. I think the biggest part was just doing our job from the first half to the second."
On making sure this loss doesn't impact the team the rest of the way:
"Stay humble. Playing one week at a time, one day at a time, one game at a time, and one play at a time. And just controlling our emotions. That is the biggest thing."
On how disappointed he was with this game:
"We needed to execute better to start the game, and maybe we can have a better ending than what we had today."
On if he was surprised they still had a chance to come back in the second half:
"No, I wasn't surprised. I know my guys. They're going to fight hard until the end, so we just have to cut out the mistakes at the beginning."
On what the conversation with the team was like at halftime:
"Just come out and fight. We wanted to just put the first half behind us and wanted to see what you can bring for the second half. See if you got that dog in you."
On his interception returned for a touchdown:
"I ran a boot, tried to get in a window, D-Wise [Daniel Wise] did a great job going straight to the quarterback. He got a little tip in there. As soon as I caught it, I was like 'yeah, got to take it to the crib.' I wanted to throw it in the stands. I had a deal with my college coach that I would, but this was my first one ever so had to keep it."
On the feeling of getting in the end zone:
"I don't know. I didn't know what to do. I was super stoked. I was excited. I had a bunch of emotions running through. Then was like we gotta go back out there, we got to get another stop. I was trying to collect myself again. But it was a good feeling."
On why the return meant so much:
"I mean it's a critical point in the game. We needed something. We needed a turnover, we needed points, we needed anything. I feel like it was a huge momentum swing. It was glad to be the person who did it. Like I said, if D-Wise didn't tip it and get in Dak's [Prescott] face quick, I wouldn't have got it."
On how they can adapt when the formula for winning games isn't working:
"We have a plan for them and they covered it pretty well. When the front seven keeps getting pressure on you and the secondary covers like they did today… that's a good defense. We just have to keep responding."
On Rivera saying that he was pressing and hesitant in the first half:
"Yeah, absolutely in the first half you're not getting much going and then when we do get some time I'm trying to make the big plays I don't need to make. The good thing I did in the last four games was taking what they gave me, whether it's a five-yard hitch or a 20-yard seven route. Today there were a couple throws before half I shouldn't have thrown and they were almost picked off. I have to be better."
On WR Cam Sims touchdown catch:
"It was amazing. He's a guy that comes up in big situations. Every time his name is called he makes a big play. It's good to see that from him. That's something to build on; we've got to get better. We've got a tough one in Philly this week."
The Washington Football Team hosted the Dallas Cowboys for Week 14 and suffered a 27-20 loss despite a late comeback. Check out the top shots from the action. (Photos by Emilee Fails, Karlee Sell, and Joseph Noyes/Washington Football Team)