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Postgame Quotes After Win Over Falcons

Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer

"It was a good win for us today. I don't know that it was our best performance defensively. We fought

and got some turnovers, I think the second half was probably a big turning point in the ballgame where

we took eight minutes off the clock driving down to score and then they scored and got a penalty and

we were able to get the interception and keep them off the scoreboard. We still have a lot of work to

do. We are nowhere near where we need to be but this team has a lot of fighters on it. We were a little

thin today in the secondary and I thought for the most part we did a pretty good job in coverage until

that last drive. We didn't play the run near as well as I would have liked but they had a soft balance that

allowed turnovers."

On the play of the secondary, down two safeties:

"We had to make some adjustments throughout the ballgame. They probably knew we were tilting the

coverages for Julio [Jones]. We had some areas that we had to address and fix. For the most part we

battled and had too many penalties in the backend, but we battled good."

On the play of LB Anthony Barr:

"Anthony is a special player, a special kid, as he continues to play he will be even better. I really think

the sky's the limit for the guy. There are so many things you can do with him. He has been limited the

last couple of weeks because of the hand and today we decided we would let him loose a little more,

that was good and I think he has a very bright future and can be a tremendous football player."

On the play of DE Everson Griffen in regards to the fumble and the hustle displayed:

"It was one of the things I addressed with him this week. In some of the last couple games he wasn't

hustling the way I wanted him too and then for him to comeback today and do it was great. It was a

great play that he made, the wheel route was a heck of a play and he got the sack on the fourth down.

He is that type of player that can ruin a lot of things for the offense."

On whether the sack was a freelance play:

"He was blitzing, he doesn't freelance. He was correct on that one."

On anticipating the ability to get turnovers against Atlanta:

"You never know, they had turned the ball over in the red zone a couple of times recently and so, you

are hopeful that can happen, yes. We had to run a couple of different coverages with some of the

younger guys in there today, but it was good coverage wise. For the most part, we did okay."

On protecting QB Teddy Bridgewater:

"It was good. We still have got to do better. There were times when we had defensive linemen running

free on us. We have to do better than that. It is something that is irritating me that I'm going to figure

out some way to get it fixed one way or another."

On the importance of winning this week after last week:

"It was important to win this week regardless of what happened last week. This was a big game for us

because we basically have a six‐game season going in now and we go on the road, with guys injured and

I don't know why but this was a very important game for me to comeback, fight, scratch, and get to 8‐3

was great."

On play of RB Adrian Peterson:

"Adrian did a great job. He had some aggressive runs and obviously Adrian's a very special person and

we had a commitment today to get him the ball today and run. I think our guys did a good job up front

for the most part getting to players we needed to get to, to block. I think the receivers did a good job of

getting the perimeter. Norv [Turner] made a great call on that last third‐and‐six or whatever it was and

went for the touchdown. This guy is a threat every time he has the football and we are glad he's ours."

On play of S Antone Exum, Jr.:

"Obviously it's hard for me to see everything, but for the most part I thought he did things correctly. He

didn't seem to be out of position when I look at the pictures and we talk about things on the sidelines. I

think for the most part he was in a good position and that was good to see."

On defending WR Julio Jones:

"What did he have – five catches? We kept him from the big play which I thought was big. He's a tough

guy to defend but I do think we did a fairly good job on him. He's a great player and I know people are

upset with Matt Ryan about his turnovers, but Matt Ryan is a great player too. He's a classy kid and a

great player."

On success of the wins:

"It goes back to what I said about TCF, if you play better than the other team it doesn't matter where

you play. I think we have a lot of poise. There were a lot of things that happened today, penalties that

could have rattled us but I think we played with poise and that offensively we did a good job. We

controlled the clock, we moved the ball, I thought we did a decent job on third downs today and Teddy

[Bridgewater] was a little late on the throw to [Kyle] Rudolph there in the end zone. We were trying to

pump the safety and move him and get the safety out of there. The safety just didn't move and it wasn't

his best throw. The rest of the day I thought he did a nice job taking care of the football and taking what

was there."

Vikings QB Teddy Bridgewater

"It was a great job responding today by the guys after coming off of last week's performance. We did a

great job of just competing. Coach Zimmer talked about being a physical team and we were that today.

Atlanta is the number one rush defense and for us to come in and rush the ball the way we did today

speaks volumes. The guys took Coach Zimmer's message and we just continued to compete."

On the overall performance of offense and RB Adrian Peterson:

"It was just a great job today. We talked about running the football to get something going and you

know Adrian did a great job of that today. Knowing what we were asking of him. The offensive line made

it all happen. Those guys did a great job opening holes and establishing the line of scrimmage and

moving Atlanta's defense down the field. It was just an overall great performance by those guys."

On importance of getting TE Kyle Rudolph going:

"It just great for Kyle to get Kyle going especially coming off of last week's performance. He's a guy

that's a hard worker, detailed guy and he is playing some good football for us right now. Talk about the

entire tight end group. The third stringer, TE Rhett Ellison, makes a big play and run after the catch so

those guys understand what we are asking of them and they have done a great job for us."

On the offensive line:

"They did a great job for us today. They didn't give up any sacks today and we were able to rush the ball

for over 150 yards today. Of course there is still some room for improvement but we will continue to

work hard and come back at it tomorrow.

Keys to RB Adrian Peterson performance against the number one rush defense:

"Coach Zimmer's message was we want to be a physical team and so we rushed the football on them.

We know they are the number one rush defense in the League but we were confident heading into this

game we were going to run the football against those guys and we did a great job."

On what happened with the interception:

"I probably just could have thrown the ball in the back of the end zone or just thrown it out of bounds,

the safety didn't move on the pump fake and he just made a good play."

On importance of the pass interference calls:

"It was very big, Mike's [Wallace] a guy that works extremely hard and we try and find different ways to

get him the ball and we were able to get those pass interference calls today so that is just good for us.

Great job by him understanding the route separation and getting open and able to put the defender in a

bad position."

On difference when you are not sacked:

"My body feels better that's for sure, but the guys understand and the offensive line, they take pride

when they keep the quarterback clean and they did a good job of that today. We still have room for

improvement. We can always get better but for the most part we did a good job today. It's always good

when you can come out of the game clean."

Vikings LB Anthony Barr

On the forced fumble:

"I just saw him [Tevin Coleman] break free, and I was just trailing him. Luckily, he started slowing down a

little bit and he was kind of carrying the ball a little loose, so I just tried to make a play on the ball.

Fortunately, we got it."

On chasing down a ball carrier:

"When you start getting close, you realize it. I was about 10 yards, then eight, then six, and then I was

behind him, so I tried to get the ball out and prevent a possible scoring drive."

On forcing a fumble on Matt Ryan:

"I think it was a breakdown, offensively, of communication. They just set me free, and I was able to get

there pretty fast. Fortunately on fourth down, we were able to get the ball back to the offense."

Vikings RB Adrian Peterson

"It's nice to get this bounce‐back win. We took it personal as an offense this past week and came into

this week against Atlanta just focused on them. I feel like offensively and defensively we came out and

played hard and played aggressive. "

On Atlanta's defensive front:

"I see why these guys [Atlanta] are the number one rushing defense. My fullback [Zach Line] took it

personal this week as we wanted to come out and establish the run because we felt like that would give

us the best chance to win."

On also having a couple receptions today:

"We knew how aggressive this defense was so we knew that the check downs would be important and

key. Teddy [Bridgewater] did a great job of finding the backs. Not only me but also Matt Asiata and

Jerick [McKinnon] as well to give us some space out on the perimeter to make plays there as well."

On whether it felt like yards were hard yards to get today:

"It was a grind. They have the number one rushing defense. I give those guys so much credit now that I

can look back at some of my runs it could have been 250 [yards] but their defense does a great job of

tackling and corralling things that they made it hard for our offense to really have those big runs so we

had to take those five and seven [yard runs] which kept the chains moving and kept the clock moving.

Normally we want to get seven points and a few times we had to settle for three points but we just kept

grinding and kept digging like I preach to the guys. We also made plays out on the perimeter and also in

the run. To be able to escape on that third down play [his 35 yard TD run in the fourth quarter] with the

80 Truck [play call] to seal the deal."

Vikings K Blair Walsh

On the firing of his college coach Mark Richt:

"I heard about it during pregame and it's really unfortunate. He is such a great man, a man of integrity

and character and somebody who has helped shape me into who I am today. I feel for him and his family

but know that if he decides to keep coaching that he will have another job at any point that he wants. I

love him and will miss him at Georgia when I go back."

On the decision to fire him:

"I understand the frustration as they were projected as a top 10 team this year and we didn't exactly

pan out the way that we wanted to but you still have the chance to win 10 games and there would be a

lot of programs that would be happy with that chance. I guess Georgia wants to go a different way but

we have to be thankful for the 15 years with him and everything that brought to the university. He is a

great man."

Vikings CB Terence Newman

On being able to overcome losses and put together wins:

"If you think about it, there has only been one team to go undefeated all the way and win the Super

Bowl. Setbacks are going to happen, but you do not want them to happen. Now, we are back to being

good. Our defensive line hit a lot of people, our safeties were covering guys, and our offense is able to

do what they do. We just all believe in each other."

On Anthony Barr's performance:

"Did you see the play that he made on the running back [Tevin Coleman] with one hand? He has a

freaking cast on his hand. The dude is impressive. He is a hell of a football player. He amazes me every

week. He does something that makes you wonder 'how do you do this?"

Vikings CB Captain Munnerlyn

On studying film of other teams:

"We look at them all. I like to look at Tennessee's tape, and since I am the nickel back, I like to look at

third down and like to see what they do on third down and all of the pass plays. That is something that I

try to study."

On the Falcons unveiling different offensive schemes:

"Yes. I saw those guys in stacks. They normally run a seven route and a whip route. They did not do that

today. They ran an inside route, and I was outside. Julio [Jones] ran a dig route, and I had been looking

to take that pass all day."

On his interception today:

"I just read the route. I know, being a nickel back, that they like doing option routes on me. That is

something that teams like to do in the NFL. If you are outside, they run inside. If you are inside, they run

back inside. It is just totally different. I just read the route, jumped it, and made a play."

Vikings CB Xavier Rhodes

On playing without Harrison Smith:

"I mean, it is football. In the NFL, it is the next man up. Our guys came in and played well. That is it."

On the Falcons unveiling different offensive schemes:

"We were just running to the ball, executing the calls, covering their guys, and getting to the

quarterback whenever we could get to him. We just made good plays."

On shadowing Julio Jones:

"Like I said, whatever the coaches want me to do. If they want to shadow this guy that week, then I will

do it. If they do not, then we will put one on each side. It is up to the coaches at the end of the day."

Vikings S Antone Exum Jr.

On preparing to start this week:

"I think that the way I prepared during the week with the coaches helping me study and get down pat

the game plan and what they like to do on offense. I think that helped me a lot, so I came in confident

and hopefully I played like that."

On recovering Tevin Coleman's fumble:

"Yeah, I saw him [Tevin Coleman] hit the hole, and I automatically knew that I was last in line up the

field, so I was the last possible hope of bringing him down. I really just wanted to stop him from scoring

at the time. I was able to stay over the top of him and he starting weaving and whatnot. [Anthony] Barr

did an excellent job running to the ball and punched it out, and I just tried to recover anyway I could."

On bouncing back from the loss against Green Bay last week:

"I just think we have resiliency, and we tried to not let last week define us and where we are going to go

for the rest of the season. We understood that after the last game we had six regular season games left.

We were going to try win those and put it all on the line. We did not want it to be a domino effect losing

that Green Bay game and going downhill from there. I am proud of the guys for stepping it up."

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