Falcons head coach addresses media after team's 28-12 season-opening loss Sunday.

What Dan Quinn had to say about loss to Vikings

Opening statement: “Obviously disappointed in all three phases today. Three turnovers and a blocked punt all leading to touchdowns, and the inability to create any takeaways when you get into that space is not going to be good. We knew going in the turnover battle was going to be key, and today was certainly an indication of that, especially when you look at the first half. We've got to address these issues and get that fixed. It's something that certainly we were prepared for and talked about coming in, but not to create any, and to be that far in the hole in the turnover margin, let alone field position, is going to set you up for a bad game, and that's what we had tonight.”

Coach, the run defense, what was going on there? They were able to run it pretty successfully. It looked like you all were playing a lot of 3-4 with the guys standing up. “We knew that was going to be part of this game to make sure we could set the edge and get it. When we lost that or got the ball outside, I thought that was a factor for them getting some of the explosive runs that they had. We were prepared, knowing (Dalvin) Cook, knowing the run game that they had, we did not get it stopped the way we needed to.”

Dan, in the first couple minutes of the game, you had a guy go unblocked on a sack. You had a guy go completely unblocked on a blocked punt. What does that say about game preparation for this week? “Probably both of them differently. On the punt, certainly wasn't a look that we hadn't seen or prepared for. So I wouldn't say from the preparation standpoint. I thought, quite honestly, the guys' mindset and preparation had been good, so to come out and perform like we did tonight was disturbing because I thought, in terms of the preparation -- you know, usually as a coach, you kind of know where you're headed, and I thought their preparation was good. I can't reflect on the first one. I know there was one that was a free -- I don't know if it was a free release where he's an unblocked player and we throw hot off of him. I'd have to have a better answer for that tomorrow.”

How did Kaleb McGary and Ty Sambrailo do at right tackle, and do you have an update on Lindstrom? “On all three, I'll have a better chance to look at it tonight. Obviously, there wasn't a lot of glowing evaluations coming out of tonight's game, it certainly seemed like. But for the experience for Kaleb to get in and get going against good rushers and guys that can go, I know that pays dividends later, but I can't tell you on the performance yet without going back through to look at it. (Chris) Lindstrom, we should have an update for you tomorrow. He wasn't able to return with his foot, but we'll get a better feel for that once all the doctors and everybody commit to what his injury is.”

When it came to the offensive line, what went into Jamon Brown not being active? “Just the body of work we've put in up until now, we thought that was the best way to go. We thought Jamon wasn’t a backup center, so Wes Schweitzer took over that space.”

When you look at the goal-line situation and what happened, I guess the first down, got negative yardage played with the heavy personnel out there, and the next play is the interception. How did you break that down? And at the point did you feel, hey, maybe if we score here, we're right in it? “We thought that's where we were headed. We were staying aggressive and going. So even when you're down, like you are, you want to fight and get back. Thought we were going to have a chance to fight and get back in it. There was a penalty that got us down close for that. Yeah, at the end of it, like those scoring plays that don't happen in the red zone that turn into interceptions, those are points off the board in some space. At that point, we had been going for it on all four downs. So there wasn't a time that we were going to look to kick in that space. It was definitely a factor.”

One other point that you brought up, you talk about setting the edge. What did you see? I know that's something you even told us about, you showed us on film about that, what was it that you saw that the guys just weren't doing right when it came to that situation? I know one play, Isaiah Oliver kind of got blocked off the spot. “I'll tell you, usually it's a combination of things, when you're playing man to man and trailing a receiver inside and he's going to crack, and you have to get off quickly. More than anything, usually it comes down to our fundamentals. Can we do it better? Which we know we can. We'll go back and look at it and evaluate it. Obviously, it's a scheme that's common. It wasn't anything unusual that we hadn't prepared for, but we didn't do it like we need to, and I think that was the biggest issue for us.”

Dan, on the O-line, I know a lot of people thought it might take a while for you guys to come together this season just because of the injuries and youth. Did this game sort of reaffirm it might take a while as a unit for them to come together? “I thought it would be a good test, and with three new guys in, certainly didn't go like we had planned, but I thought we'd get tested. Linval (Joseph) and the rushers and the guys outside and a good blitz package. I thought the group was ready to go in terms of preparation, but for us to miss the mark like we did, I thought the turnovers obviously were a factor. Then when we get out a score, we don't get to stay in balance like we'd like. I'll have a good look at it, but I didn't expect us to be in the hole, obviously, like we did.”

On the other side of the ball, I don't know if it was D-line or the defense as a whole, I think twice you had to burn time-outs because it looked like guys weren't set? “One was for sure one, for me, I didn't get the call in quick enough. The communication had clicked off, and it was down in the goal line. So I wanted to make sure we had a right call.”

Dan, second and goal in the red zone when Matt Ryan threw a pick; is there any explanation for that? “Is there any explanation for that?”

Yeah. “Well, I suppose. I'd say, if you asked him, he was trying to give the guy a shot to go make a play. They were trying to run a keeper. He had pressure in his face. He could easily, going back -- hindsight is 20/20, look back, throw it out of bounds, throw it in the dirt, and come back and fight for two more plays. Lofted it up high to go take a shot at it, and it didn't work. But one of those moments you give the guys a shot. On fourth down, you do and say, ‘okay, you've got to loft it up to find that space.’ This is not a time to go throw it away, and those moments will come back for sure. It's one of the topics we had talked about, but not on second down.”

Julio was shaking his hand. Is he okay? Came back in and scored a touchdown. “No update or nothing that would hold him back.”

One thing, it's 28-6, why did you go for two? “Yeah. We're just kind of staying true to what our numbers said, and that's what we did.”

Just the math doesn't work out, though. “Yeah. Okay.”

You had penalties in that one long drive. “On defense -- defensively or offensively?”

Yeah, the one drive -- “I think there was a pass interference on 26 (Isaiah Oliver) and maybe an illegal contact -- or unnecessary roughness on 37 (Ricardo Allen) possibly. I think those were the ones.”

That kind of penalty related drive that kind of iced the game. You all were trying to correct the penalties in exhibition season. How are you all addressing that moving forward? “It has to, one, we've got to address it right away. Tomorrow, that's what our ‘tell the truth Monday’ is about, and see which fouls need to be prevented, which ones go. Like let's look at it closely. If he did grab him, and I didn't see the foul that took place with Isaiah, but we'll certainly look at it, and find ways to correct it and teach it better, that's what we'll do.”

After one game, is everybody going to -- media, fans, everybody -- I understand it's one game of 16, but it was a bad game. So what could you say that would suggest this isn't going to be reflective of the season? “I think, number one, for the fans and the people that watch us, they know a lot about the players who are in our locker room. I told the team we'll find out a lot about how tight we are, about the way we play, the attitude we play, and come back from this because we missed the mark today and we missed it badly. For us to come back and play like we're capable of, it will take everybody playing together, and that's what we expect to do.” 

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