Kansas City Chiefs head coach Todd Haley met with the media today to talk about Sunday’s 26-20 overtime loss to the Dallas Cowboys. Here are the highlights:
When you went to bed last night did you replay the decision about going for the two-point conversion? Is that the kind of thing a head coach does?
“Yeah, sure. I replayed a lot of that game. I didn’t sleep a whole bunch last night. Sure, you replay that. I was laying there with my wife and I said, ‘you think I should have gone for two?’ It’s two yards to win. But again, I stand by the decision I made. We’ve got two opportunities in overtime to win the game and really looked good. The second possession on the second one from the 50 and we’ve got a slant on the first play on Jenkins. I like our chances right there. We catch that ball or execute that play, and there was some action going on over…but we’ve got to make that play. As far as I’m concerned their guy, Miles Austin, made the plays in similar situations. That’s why they won.”
Some of the guys in the locker room talked about how they liked the pace during that two minute drive, saying, ‘that’s a good pace for us.’ Everyone looked comfortable. You’ve talked about playing at a faster pace. Is that something you would consider?
“Yeah, like I said, we’ve got to build on that situation in a lot of different ways. That was a tough deal, a tough situation to be put in, like I said, especially with a sack on the second play and a dropped ball on the first ball. Easy to say we’re in trouble. We talked about this becoming a team. I told the team, it’s like a symphony orchestra. It’s got to be everybody in unison, together, and I think there were signs of that yesterday.”
Looking at your running game problems, how much of that is on Larry Johnson?
“I think a running back you kind of count on him to get something when there’s nothing there. But that’s easily said. But I thought that Larry ran hard yesterday. I thought that what is a little misleading is we threw a couple of swing passes that ended up being counted as runs and specifically the one for the big loss that there was really nothing he could really do. Those hurt your numbers a little bit and I know that’s discouraging at times. But I think the kid ran hard. He stuck it up in there and he needs a little help to.”
What is going on with Derrick Johnson? He’s healthy enough to play some on special teams but he can’t seem to get on the field in the other areas?
“You’re the Derrick Johnson question guy aren’t you? We’re going to label you the Derrick Johnson question guy. Hey, there’s a lot of factors that go into it. Right now I’d rather you be talking about Demorrio Williams because that guy came out and played a heck of a game. They happen to play the same position and we’re going to play the guys that give us the best chance to win. Period. (#) 53. Talk about him. That guy busted his butt. Made a lot of plays… We’ll play the guys that give us the best chance to win. Period.”
If I can follow up, you said last week (Johnson) was nicked up. This week it’s not a nicked up issue then?
“(Williams) got a chance to play for however he got in there and he’s playing well and giving us a chance to win. I thought Demorrio played a game good enough for us to win. He was one of the guys above the line of, ‘did you play good enough to win, did you play somewhere in the middle somewhere and hold the fort, or did you hurt our chances to win’? Demorrio was above that positive line.”
On Branden Albert:
“Sore today, which we knew. We taped him up a couple of times yesterday. He wanted to come back in and it just wasn’t meant to be. I was proud of the job Wade (Smith) did coming in there and fighting it out and not having a lot of reps at the spot. Brandon was sore today and we’ll have to evaluate him further tomorrow.”
Have you looked at the tape on the Austin plays? Was Brown late in coming over? Or should have Maurice Leggett not gambled?
“We just got to make the tackle. The completion is all right. They’re third-and-six or seven. We’ve got to tackle. Period. Whether it’s Maurice or Mike Brown or someone else, we’ve got to be running to the football at all times. That’s what we’re taught. We’ve got to get him down. The game can’t end in that situation. That’s just too difficult to swallow.”
You seemed to have a nice moment with Dwayne Bowe on the touchdown grab. For you, after how much you two worked in the off-season, can you talk about that?
“It’s a huge play. Fourth down and you can’t get any more difficult, in traffic, between safeties and you know you’re going to get hit. Big-time play. I think for Dwayne that’s a play he has to build on if he wants to help pull and push this team to where it needs to get to. He’ll be a key factor in that, hopefully. Guys who want to be big- time players I’ve always believed make big-time plays in big-time games. That was our biggest situation to date and he made the play. That’s something to build on.”
When we talk to the opponent’s coach each week the guy that they constantly bring up and say to be the best defensive player is #91 (Tamba Hali) and the Cowboys said the same thing and the broadcast this past week said he was the best pass rusher they were going to up against this year. It doesn’t seem his production is what everybody is saying he is? Are they attacking him differently?
“I think the case in point is Ware (Cowboys). Last year he was unstoppable and going into our game he had no sacks. Sometimes that isn’t always reflected in sacks because it does make people keep backs in, keep tight ends in, line up certain ways. I don’t think that is always reflected in sack totals.”