Minnesota Player Quotes
Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012
Minnesota Player QuotesWide Receiver/Quarterback MarQueis Gray
On if today was a game that the team can learn from
"We have no choice now. We didn't go out there and do what we were expected to do. Nebraska came to play and they put points up on the board and as an offense we didn't do that until the last quarter and that's something that we can't do next week and next season. Hopefully the young guys learn and not let it happen again."
On how much it hurts the offense
to not be able to run the ball
"It hurts a lot. That's basically what our offense is. If we're getting stopped in the backfield then we just have to, as receivers, be able to go downfield and make plays for the quarterback."
On what Nebraska's defense did
that made it difficult for the offense
"All of those guys are fast. They're quick and athletic. All of them are in the right spot at the right time. They know their jobs like the back of their hands. They just did a good job today."
On quarterback Philip Nelson's
"He was composed. You couldn't tell if he was sad or down. He stayed at one level, and that's what you have to do as a quarterback."
On if he's feeling healthy to get
in the position to make plays his touchdown runs
"I'm willing to do whatever. We just put those plays in a couple of days ago, and they called it and I was able to get in the end zone. The offensive line did a great job of getting that push up front."
On how he felt
"It felt pretty good to get back there and put points up on the board. Other than that, that's something we have to do as a team before we start to get beat like that."
On how the receivers played and
what he thought of the dropped balls
"We just have to make those plays. We need to stay confident throughout the whole game. We have to make those plays throughout the whole game down the field."
On if today's performance stings
because it isn't an indication of the progress they've made this season
"It stings a lot because we just came off of a big win last week. We were feeling confident going in today, and we just didn't show up. It showed throughout the game. We started to put a drive together in the last couple of minutes but that's something we can't have. As a team we have to start off fast."
Linebacker Mike Rallis
On quarterback Taylor Martinez
"He did a good job. We didn't do a good job with the pressure and there were open guys, and he made the passes."
On how Nebraska was able to keep
"I think they had too many big plays. We didn't do a good job on third downs. I haven't seen the stats on third downs but I can't imagine they're very good. We played good defense at times but not nearly enough of the time, especially on third down. We have to win more of those, and we didn't do that today."
On Martinez and if he was
changing things a lot at the line
"Yes. They like to hurry up and see what the defense is in and get things changed. No defense is designed to give up big plays or touchdowns so we have to execute and do our jobs. If we don't do that, obviously we're going to give up big plays."
On if they focused a lot on
stopping the run game and if that opened up the pass
"Every team every week, especially in the Big Ten, starts with stopping the run. We wanted to do that this week but I don't know if that hurt us or not in the passing game. The DBs did a great job all year. With passing a lot of people like to look at only the defensive backs but that's not the case. It starts up front and really all three levels work together in the passing game. We have to look at getting that fixed. We've been good all year on that but today we (weren't). We have to get that fixed by next week."
On if the 3-and-outs on offense
hurt the defense
"I signed up for defense to get stops. My job isn't to dictate what the offense does or doesn't do. Every time I step on the field my job is to execute and get stops and not worry about what the offense does."
Quarterback Philip Nelson
On if he was surprised by the pressure from Nebraska's D-line
"No. We knew they were a good team and we knew what was coming."
On Nebraska's secondary
"The gap for open receivers was smaller than in any other game. You have to give all the credit to their defensive secondary."
On the lack of a running game
"A great defensive line is what it comes down to. It started with them, and they did a great job of holding off the run game."
On what they can learn from a
game like that
"You learn that you have to step up. You have to get faster and stronger to be able to play with teams like this in an environment like this."
On the impact of injuries
"Injuries aren't an excuse. Football is a physical game and there are going to be injuries. You can't blame anything on injuries. There were just plays that have to be made by me and by everyone else."
Defensive Back Brock Vereen
On if the game stings more because of the bad showing
"The biggest frustration in a loss like this is not being able to show everybody how good we really are. That lets everybody down, including ourselves, when we don't play to our full potential."
On if he was surprised at how
quickly the game got away
"Yeah, but that's credited to us not being ready when we came out. The first couple of series were like a flash because we weren't fired up and we weren't playing with energy."
On Nebraska's third-down success
"Third downs were one of the big issues of the game. I feel like on each one of those there a guy in position to make a play, but when it came down to it, they made the play and we didn't. That's something we need to correct."
On Nebraska's offensive game plan
"They had a solid game plan, but we did also. They executed and we didn't."
On what part of Nebraska's
offense was the hardest to defend
"They force you to match their physicality. Sometimes we did, but the plays that we didn't, they took advantage of."