Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer
I told the team all week long, this was going to be a grind today. I knew it was, I know how the AFC North teams play. I was in that division for six years. So, I know how good of defensive teams they are and I know how good Baltimore is. I challenged our special teams all week long on playing great. I thought Marcus Sherels played great today. All the special teams did. Specialist Kai Forbath did a nice job. Jarius Wright had some big time catches. It was nice to see Latavius Murray get some big runs in there. Being able to run the ball against this stout front was good. I think defensively we played pretty good most of the day.
Q: Is that performance what you've been hoping to see from Latavius Murray all season?
A: The thing I liked about it today was the physicality he ran with. He's a slashing-style runner. Yards-after-contact was good today, made the safety miss on the touchdown run. All those things were good, it's good to see him going. It adds to our dimension on the offensive side with a guy like Jerick [McKinnon] and a guy like him. It's really a testament to our offense too. We've had [Stefon] Diggs out, [Michael] Floyd out today. We didn't have [Dalvin] Cook, we don't have the quarterback, we don't have a couple lineman today. We just keep on battling and fighting. I thought Case played a lot better in the second half. We ran the ball good.
Q: Do you feel the team is gaining confidence in Case Keenum?
A: I think they've always had confidence in Case. I just feel like Pat [Shurmur] has a good feel of what Case can do.
Q: Do you feel like you're equipped to play any sort of game?
A: I really don't know. I know that if we continue to stop the run on defense and good on third downs, we usually can match up pretty good with most teams. I still feel like the strength of our defense is being able to rush the quarterback. We backed off the blitzes there late in the game just because we were trying to milk the clock. I don't know, I think it was good that we were able to get in some big personnel and run the ball, we were in little personnel and running the ball today. I think we were 47 percent on third downs so that was good.
Q: Do you feel 5-2?
A: Right now I feel tired. Just one game at a time, just keep going. We unfortunately know when you're halfway through the season or almost halfway through the season doesn't mean anything. We've been there before.
Q: What did you think of Kai Forbath's performance today?
A: He's made some great kicks. He's right on the edge of where he needs to be. I think it's good that our offense understands where they have to be in order to get a field goal if we're not going to get the third down. We've been playing fairly smart football. Obviously, we've got things to clean up and get better at. Because there were some not good things today too.
Q: Is your offense's ability to weather some of those injuries and keep going an encouraging sign?
A: I didn't watch [Danny] Isidora the whole time but I watched him quite a bit when he first went in and I thought he did good. He got to the second level, he did a nice job on things. I saw Rashod [Hill] a little bit, I didn't notice him. I don't think it's anything serious. We'll see with these other guys, hopefully we'll get Easton back next week and we'll go from there.
Q: How about Jarius Wright and how he can come in and play and help you guys win?
A: Yeah Jarius kind of does what he always does. He makes plays when he gets the opportunities. The third down, couple diving third down catches I believe it was. That's typically what he does when he gets in there. He's a great kid and works real hard and when he gets his number called he usually produces.* *
Q: Latavius Murray getting 18 carries, was that part of your game plan?
A: I know everyone wants to know, we don't go in saying alright Jerick [McKinnon] is going to get this many, he's going to get this many. Sometimes it's just the style of run that we have, the runs that we like that week. Sometimes it's who's got the hot hand. I mean they all run the same plays but some guys are probably a little better at some of the other ones. We try to get them in and sometimes it's just we spell a guy in and it's a longer series. I wish I could be better at answering that but it's really true.
Q: First play of the game did you specifically want to get Laquon Treadwell involved right away?
A: No, it was just a normal pass that got called and that was the look that they gave us.
Q: Coaches are creatures of habit, are you used to this London thing or is it disruptive?
A: I've never been to London so I don't know. We're going to try something a little bit different than most of the other teams and I'll either look smart or I'll look dumb.
Q: What are you going to do?
A: We're going to leave on Wednesday after practice so we're going to get there a day early. Tomorrow they're going to come in, we'll get our normal stuff, we'll run and lift and get this game flushed out of our system and have a short little walk thru on Cleveland. Then players will be off on Tuesday and then morning practice on Wednesday and then we'll leave that night and then get there Thursday and have a Thursday practice when we get there. We've had sleep people come talk to us, you know we're getting the whole gamut. I was looking into all the scientific things for this.
Q: What has allowed Everson Griffen to be as consistently disruptive as he has been from game 1 to game 7?
A: He's a good player. He's got power, he's got strength, he's got getoff, he jumps offsides a lot, you know which I'll get that corrected, but he's got a great spin move, he's great with his hands. He's just an all-day work for whoever he's playing against. If the guy slips up one time and the quarterback holds the ball a little bit, you know they were getting the ball out really quick today like most teams do against us. They were chipping him like most teams do against us. He's not going to take plays off he's going to keep fighting and I think that's the biggest thing about him.
Q: What did you see from Anthony Barr today bouncing back from the concussion?
A: I thought he played great today. Anthony has been playing great, he's been playing with a lot of fire, tenacity, he was able to get the one sack but I know there was another time he was free off the backside that he almost got there. The guys just playing really good right now. I love big, fast, physical guys and he kind of fits that bill.
Vikings Running Back Latavius Murray
Q: Your first touchdown as a Viking, as well as your first time rushing for 100 yards since last December. How do you feel?
A: I feel good. It just felt good to be able to see the end zone, to kind of get in a rhythm. It felt really good. It felt like it had just been a while, and I wanted to be productive for the team, so today I felt good about that.
Q: Teammates were joking about how they wanted you to break off a long gain. How did it feel to get that long run today?
A: It feels really good. Again, like I've spoken about all this time, I want to try to get explosive, try and make guys miss, try and get those big runs. That gets us in position to score touchdowns; it gets us in position for everybody to score. I'm a big guy, and those third down situations I need to make the most of it and get the first down, but those long runs I want as well.
Q: Was there anything in particular different about today?
A: It starts with the offensive line, and when you talk about the different guys moving around, the two new guys coming in there, I think all the credit goes to them. What they've been able to do this season with guys moving around and guys being out, they continue to give us a chance, whether it's throwing the ball downfield or the running backs running the ball. To be honest with you, I don't think anything was different. We knew we had to run the ball, we knew how greedy they were, or how stingy they were, so we just wanted to come in here with the mentality to run the ball.
Q: You seemed to attack the line more than you have in past games. Was that because of your ankle, are you more confident in your health?
A: No, I just think it was a matter of me still trying to find my rhythm, trying to get a groove going. Again, I said I was going to eventually have some success. I just knew I had to continue to keep doing what I do and continue to keep working, and hopefully like today there were those big runs.
Q: How did things look in front of you when you were hitting holes?
A: They looked good. When the offensive line puts a hat on their guy and get me to the second level, that's the best feeling in the world for a back because that's all you can ask for and the rest is up to you at the second level. We had a lot of those, getting to the second level today. So again, the offensive line did a heck of a job.
Q: Being 5-2 right now, how do you feel about where this team is at?
A: I think obviously we're in a good position. We're doing some good things, but it's still a long season, and we know that. So we got to continue to keep working and just find ways to win no matter what.
Q: You said Rashod Hill and Danny Isidora came in and didn't miss a beat. That says a lot about the depth of the offensive line.
A: Most definitely. It says a lot about them, it says a lot about what Tony [Sparano] has been able to do for those guys, keep them ready. We believe in everybody in the locker room, that if they're number is called they'll step up and do what they need to do.* *
Q: You were featured last year in Oakland. Was it a tough six weeks waiting to get a chance to show what you can do?
A: Tough, because I want to be out there playing and I want to, again, be a part of the run game, but we were running the ball really well and we were winning too. So it's tough because I want to be out on the field, but at the same time, what matters the most is what we're able to do to win ball games. If my play is a part of that, then I'm absolutely happy about that, but at the same time, I just want to win. Today was a good day for me, but most importantly we won, so I'm happy about that.
Q: When you saw daylight, especially on that last trip into the end zone, what were you thinking?
A: I said they're going to talk about me if I let them tackle me, so I got to score this touchdown. I just tried to take a hard angle and let them think I was going to head for the pylon, and once I saw them bite on it, put my foot in the ground and get back up field.
Vikings Wide Receiver Jarius Wright
Q: You're still around, huh?
A: I don't think that the coaches doubted me otherwise I wouldn't have been out there. You know with me it's all about opportunities and God willing, I'm going to make the most out of every one of them.
Q: When did you know (Michael) Floyd wouldn't go and they'd need another guy to step up?
A: We just found out that Floyd wasn't going today. I'm a vet in this league, I know how things happen so I'm always ready to go if anybody goes down. I'm always ready to go regardless of the situation and I know you have to be like that in the NFL.
Q: Did you pat your old college quarterback (Ryan Mallett) on the head after your first catch?
A: Yeah, I did. That's my guy. He's one of my good friends on and off the field. It was good to get a chance to see him. When I got up I saw him shaking his head saying, "Incomplete pass," and I was, like "C'mon man, you know I caught it." I just gave him a little tap. That's my guy; that's one of my best friends. Regardless if we're playing against each other, we're still friends.
Q: How much pride do you take in some of those difficult catches you made?A: I just take pride in catching the ball. Throughout my whole career that's been one of the things that I've done. Regardless of where the ball is thrown or who's throwing it, I have to catch it. It's up to me to show guys that I can still make plays.
Q: How has it been over the years just getting opportunities and then not getting opportunities?
A: It's very trying, but my faith is strong and I believe in God and I understand that God has a plan for me and I truly believe that. You all talk to me all the time, and I've been the same guy. I've sat back and waited my turn and always thought about taking advantage of opportunities, and I did my best to do that today.
Q: Is it just the case of having so much depth at wide receiver?
A: Yeah, and that's tough. Each week it could be a new guy that steps up. It's not only in the receiver room. You know we have Kyle (Rudolph) out wide at tight end and Blake Bell, we have a lot of good tight ends, and also running backs. You can't get the ball every play and you just have to understand that. And when your number is called, you have to make that play.
Q: Do you think the coaches have changed the mentality towards giving you more playing time?
A: I don't really know if it persuaded them, but at the same time I wouldn't be here if they didn't believe in me. I know they believe in me so that's not a problem. Whenever my number is called, I'll make a play. Regardless if I'm playing next week or if I'm not, I'm going to be the same guy and continue to make plays for my team. And with me all it is, is I want to win. That's all it's about with me is I want to win.
Q: When Case (Keenum) started to settle down at the end, what was the difference?
A: I think we've kind of taken away how good Baltimore's defense is. I know they have one of the best defenses in the league and they always have. Their great defense just came out and they started fast and started well. We hit them enough, and they finally cracked.
Vikings Right Guard Nick Easton
Q: Latavius Murray got going today. What does that do for the offensive line?
A: Yeah, it was great to see him get going today. I am happy for him and it's fun to see the back of his jersey running away from us.
Q: Is there a key to that?
A: Just staying with it and consistently trying to run the ball and breaking a few when we needed to.
Q: A lot of field goals from Kai Forbath today. You usually want touchdowns but six field goals is a pretty good day.
A: Yeah, it's a good day. You want to score touchdowns but you get the points any way you can.
Q: The offensive line has gone through its own injuries during the season. What have you seen as the season has gone along?
A: I think we decided from the beginning that we have a great room with guys that want to come in and work to get better. I think that showed today with Danny Isidora and Rashod Hill coming in and playing when we needed them.
Q: Could you see a big game coming for Latavius Murray?
A: Yeah, we got a great team. You could see a big game coming for anybody so yeah, it's there, and we just have to make it happen.
Q: Could you just talk about how somebody can come in and help out when someone else goes down?
A: Yeah, we have said this from the beginning we want to put together a room that has good guys that want to work and be ready to go. I think we proved that today with Danny Isidora and Rashod Hill coming in playing well when we needed them.
Q: It's kind of a revelation seeing those guys. We don't see them very often and that they are pretty decent.
A: We know what we got in the room. Nobody was concerned about it when they had to come in. Obviously you don't want to see guys get hurt and we hope they get back as soon as they can but we know we got good guys waiting to get on the field.
Q: It seemed like there was a lot of good traction up the middle which isn't always the case.
A: That's the way the run game works sometimes. You just have to keep going and keep going and then you break a few. That worked out a few times for us today.
Q: Would it have been nice to get in the end zone a few more times?
A: We ended up kicking a lot field goals today. It would be nice to get touchdowns, but we will take the points however they come.
Vikings Defensive End Everson Griffen
Q: What does this seven game sack streak mean to you?
A: We are winning games; that's all that really matters. I'm just going out there and beating my man when I get the opportunity with the help of the defensive line. I'm just trying to do my job at a high level.
Q: This is the fourth game in a row your defense has let up less than 275 total yards, has this team hit their stride?
A: Chemistry is everything. We are paying close attention to details and we are running to the ball, giving extra effort, and we are doing our jobs at a high level.
Q: What is it like when you have the offense in a third and long and the stadium is crazy loud?
A: We get to pin our ears back and rush and that is what we do best. [Joe] Flacco was getting the ball out real fast in the beginning and he wouldn't let us get back there. Then towards the end, he was holding the ball and we were able to get back there.
Q: This seems like this is the best your run defense has played all year?
A: I think this is the best we have been playing, but we have to keep it up. We are 5-2 and going to London, so we have to be smart with this trip and we are going there to handle business. This is not for fun. We have to come out 4-0 in this last quarter [of games] and go into our bye with a good one. Our focus right now is celebrating this win and getting to Cleveland.
Q: Stats suggested this was the defense's strongest performance of the season, do you think it was?
A: I don't know, you tell me. The only thing I care about is the W.
Q: Is this the best you have seen Anthony Barr play?
A: One hundred percent, he is playing balls to the wall. He's hitting, he's running, he's coming in, he's making big plays. That's what he is supposed to do.
Vikings Defensive End Danielle Hunter
Q: How much of a victory was it to not let the Ravens' offense inside the red zone until the last drive?
A: It means a lot. It tells us that we go out there, we do our jobs, we're playing together as one, rushing together, tackling together, covering together. That's just something we've been doing since day one.
Q: What did you think of Anthony Barr's performance today?
A: Phenomenal. That's a guy we see everyday at practice. He came out today and performed, so it was a good performance today.
Q: You guys had four sacks and 11 tackles for loss. What allowed you to do that today?
A: Just sticking with the game plan. Zim [Coach Mike Zimmer], he writes out the plays, and we just go out there and execute it.
Q: Four games in a row, your defense has kept opposing teams fewer than 275 yards. The defense has made strides. Are you where you want to be?
A: We're nowhere close to where we want to be. We're just going to keep going each week and keep doing our technique, keep doing our jobs, and then going week by week, hoping to get a win every week.
Q: You see Everson getting at least one sack for seven straight weeks. What can you say about that guy?
A: That's phenomenal. That's something I have never seen before, but he's going to keep it going.
Q: What did you see from him today? It's hard when you have the streak going and you want to keep it going.
A: I knew he was going to get a sack. Every week, I bet you he's going to get a sack because I feel the energy from him every week.
Q: Have you learned anything from him? I know that you can do it on your own, but there are some little things that you pick up each and every year, right?
A: Yes, definitely. He's a high-energy dude, and I just have to go out there with my high energy too, so I am following him.
Q: What did you see on your sack?
A: Just going out there and playing, sticking with the game plan, no overthinking. Basically that's it.
Q: Now you lead the division. How does it feel to have the sole possession there?
A: That doesn't mean anything. In the NFL, anything can change, so we just have to go out there and keep grinding.
Vikings Linebacker Anthony Barr
Q: What was your goal coming in to the game today?
A: Make plays for the team, man. Just trying to help us win games. Defense, offense and special teams – all three phases play together.
Q: It seemed like every time they wanted to throw a screen you were a step ahead. Was your success there from film study?
A: They are kind of banged up outside. Their receivers are kind of banged up. I figured they would try to get the ball in a playmaker's hands, easy catches, easy throws so there was an emphasis to try and slow down the running attack and the running backs.
Q: You've shown since training camp that you want to have a big year this year. Why is that and what's worked so far?
A: I'm just in a good place mentally; I think that's the biggest part. Physically will come and go but mentally, I just feel like I'm in a really good place. I'm confident, like you said, and it's a testament to my teammates and my coaches because they continue to believe in me and I believe in myself and it's paid off.
Q: What can you say about the level that Everson Griffen is playing at right now?
A: He's playing hard. He's bound to get a sack. If you drop back 30 times, he is going to win half those times. You have to get the ball out quick. He works extremely hard. He's the first one out at practice every day, working on his pass rush and with special teams working on his pass rush. The guy puts in work and he got paid, rightfully so. He's playing at an extremely high level.
Q: Is this the best your run defense has played?
A: Yeah, I think so. I think we're understanding our assignments and our gaps and we're trusting one another to do our jobs. It's really more a trust thing than anything. When we play together, it's hard to beat us.
*Q: What does it mean to be playing at this level – you guys have been playing together for so long. *
A: Yeah, I think that has a lot to do with it. Cohesiveness, the trust that we've built and the friendships we've built; we are a pretty close group. We play for one another and I think that's the biggest thing. We're not a selfish group. We all want to see each other do well individually and as a unit. It's fun when everyone has that mentality to be excited for the next guy, knowing your time is going to come.
Q: Have you seen a trickledown effect in overall performances and how your defense has been playing outside?
A: It really starts in the trenches for us. Our D-line has been playing outside all year and that makes it easy for us at linebackers to fill in the gaps. You're not going to be able to run it very well between the tackles; it's going to be tough. We might let a couple slip here and there, but for the most part, in those 60 minutes it's going to be tough to do that.
Vikings Wide Receiver Adam Thielen
Q: Is kicking six field goals good news or bad news?
A: Obviously we'd like to finish those, but a win is a win. As long as we're winning games, it doesn't matter. We'll go look at the tape and get better and keep working.
Q: The game was what you expected it to be though? Baltimore doesn't give you much, and you worked hard for everything and played a short game?
A: Right. Coach said he's played against these guys a lot, played in that division a lot. He said he knew it was going to be a grind, and that's what it was. I'm just happy we were on top.
Q: Latavius Murray had a good game on the ground today.
A: Yeah, Latavius did a great job. He's been working his tail off, he keeps coming to work. He's got a great attitude and it showed off tonight. It's obviously great to have a guy like that break out, because that's only going to help our offense moving forward.
Q: How did you feel when he finally got a touchdown?
A: That was a huge play, a huge play in the game to score and get up by a couple of scores. That's huge for us, and huge momentum for our offense because we knew then we could break some long ones, we just got to stay consistent and keep going. That's what we need, we need somebody to step up, somebody new to step up each game, because teams are going to keep looking at guys to try and stop. He did a great job of that.
Q: Being alone at the top of the division has to feel good?
A: Yeah, any time you're in first place in this division it feels good, but at the same time it doesn't really matter at this time in the season. We're not even half way through yet, so we got to keep grinding, keep putting together ballgames and keep bringing wins in.
Q: What does it say about this team that each game a different player on the offense emerges and contributes?
A: I think it's something that we've been preaching, and we knew we have a lot of talent in the offensive side of the room, and obviously the defensive side of the room. But we know we have a lot of skilled guys and a great offensive line, and that we can go make plays. Somebody has got to bring it each week and get us that momentum and get us going.
Q: It seemed like Case Keenum started the game a little inconsistent, and as the game evolved he settled down?
A: I think we put that on us as receivers, I don't think we were getting open and getting a whole lot of separation for him. He's a guy that's going to stick with us and keep giving us opportunities, and that's all you can ask for in a quarterback. He's a fighter and he wants to win worse than anybody on this team, so it's obviously great to have a guy like that on your back.
Q: What adjustments did you have to make to get open?
A: I think just adjusting the physicality. They were in your face every single down, they were going to grab you and hold you, and you just had to fight through it. You weren't going to get the calls, and that's fine, because it was that way both ways. It was a good physical game, like I said we knew it was going to be like that coming in to the game, but you don't really get a feel for it until you get to the game.
Vikings Quarterback Case Keenum
Q: Did you get a sense early in the week or as the game went on that touchdowns might be at a premium?
A: I wouldn't say early in the week. As the game went on you knew that it's going to be one of those games where special teams are important, defensive points, any points that you can score are very important. I thought Kai [Forbath] did a great job today. That was awesome to see. I know he had a career-high there so excited for him. It's however you can find a way and against those guys, against the Baltimore Ravens, it's a really good defense and I think we accomplished a lot of our goals that we set this week.
Q: What was the difference between the first and second half for you?
A: The offensive line did a great job again tonight. As the game went on I felt we did a good job adjusting to what they were doing. Guys making plays down the field. Like I said, we did enough, it wasn't perfect. There were definitely some throws I'd like back, but we did enough and we did it at the right times. I think that's what good football teams do.
Q: What were some of those goals the offense set for the week?
A: One of them was obviously, just like every week, take care of the football. This defense has thrived on takeaways and we knew that going in. We had to take care of the football whether it was throwing the ball or running the ball and I think we did a great job of that. Two, it's just be sharp in our operation, getting us in and out of the right plays, getting us in the right protections because they mix up a lot of the things they do on third downs pressure wise. I think that was a big emphasis for us this week.
Q: When you figured out what they were doing defensively, how much of that dictated moving the ball over the middle of the field instead of passing outside?
A: J.[Jarius] Wright made a couple of really big plays – one on third down, another one late in the fourth quarter. Being able to sustain drives – four out of the five drives in the second half were really, really big drives. Then when you can run the ball like we did. We had to run the ball, these guys are too good. We had to establish the run and Latavius had a great night. I thought Jet [Jerick McKinnon] had a great night too. You have to give credit up front. Those guys, I know we had some guys go down tonight, they were all ready. All those guys were ready. There was no drop off. It was a great team win.
Q: What happened with the interception on the first play?
A: It was something we wanted to take a shot early. And then when the defense goes out and gets the sack, we have a good return, I'm taking the shot. I felt the momentum of the game. I thought we could jump on them quick and put the ball out there. The guy made a good play. That's what you do when you take a chance.
Q: Was it a check on that play?
A: No. It was just part of the progression. That was the play that we scripted for the first play of the game.
Q: How do you think Danny Isidora and Rashod Hill faired being tossed in there?
A: I think they did a great job. For me not to notice it really, the exact moment when they came in. I knew Jeremiah [Sirles] was hurt, but to not notice any of the operation or anything else, I think that's a really good thing. We kept our foot on the gas pedal and drove down to score again.
Q: What was it like to see Latavius Murray break into the second level today?
A: It was great. A couple of different times. He's a shifty guy. He's really good with a little bit of space. He is just going to continue to get better. Coming back the way he has, I think it's going to time up really well. To have those two backs hitting on all cylinders, I think that is a really good one-two punch.
Q: You had a tough outing in London ast year with four interceptions. How good do you feel to come back one year later for redemption in London?
A: I appreciate you mentioning that, in case you didn't know. Cool atmosphere. It's a great spot. I made the mistake of calling it Twicken-HAM. I think it's Twickenham. Just a side note, that's free advice for you. It's a cool stadium and it's a really cool atmosphere. Everyone over there is really friendly. It's a blast, once you get used to the time difference and everything. I'm looking to go. It's a new team, new squad, new opponent. Anytime you got something going like this, you want to keep it going.
Q: After your tough outing last year, how is it to get the chance to redeem yourself?
A: I don't see it as redemption. It's a totally different situation. It may be the same stadium, but I see it as a totally different situation with a totally different team. I'm just going to go and do my job. I'm not looking backwards, I'm not looking too far ahead. I'm looking at the Cleveland Browns. They got a really good defense and a coordinator that I know. It will be a really tough test.
Q: After some of the things you have been through this year, to be in first place after seven weeks, what is the sense of where you guys sit right now?
A: For me, I try not to think too much about that. I know you guys that is your job and you do that for a living, talk about those sort of things. For me, we're where we want to be. We're playing good football. We could play better football, offensively. Our defense is playing really well. It's a lot of fun when we get up by a score or two and watch those guys pass rush. Especially at home, here. With the fans and the atmosphere we've got going, it's electric out there. I'm having a lot of fun watching those guys rush other quarterbacks.
Vikings Safety Harrison Smith
Q: What is it like when the crowd is going crazy?
A: It is just fun. You just play like when you are a kid, loving the game. Coach is going to put us in spots to win. We love going out there and executing.
Q: What is it like to have guys contributing at all three phases?
A: That is what you have to have in the NFL. It is a long season. There is a lot of things that happen. You have to have guys step up all over the place. It is not just the defense, it is the offense and special teams.
Q: What have you seen from Anthony Barr that he has been able to step up?
A: I know people were saying he had an off year last year but I thought he played well. I think the splash plays is what people notice the most. He is balling. He is having fun and playing with a lot of passion. He loves the game, playing in this defense and we love playing with him. He is playing lights out.
Vikings Kicker Kai Forbath
Q: How did you feel out there today?
A: I took it one kick at a time. I had opportunities today and I took advantage of them.
Q: How did it feel to hit some field goals over 50 yards?
A: Those are good for the stats but it is the same amount of points where ever they are kicked from. It was a good day.
Q: Because of how the game played out, did you feel like each field goal had a little more meaning?
A: I cannot view it that way. I just go out there and try to kick it the same every time.
Q: Have you ever kicked six in a game?
A: No, four was the most. It is fun to be a part of this.
Q: Did you get a feeling that you and Justin Tucker were going to do most of the scoring?
A: You never know. We can turn around and score touchdowns like we did. I just have to stay ready and every time I am out there try and get points.
Q: When you make long field goals, does it help the offense stretch the field out?
A: It is a big momentum boost. I am just trying to help the team every time I can.
Q: Is there a confidence carry over?
A: Yes, absolutely. Every time you make one, you get a little more confidence. I felt good going into today and I am going to carry it over next week.
Q: What happened on that extra point?
A: I have not seen the film yet. I thought I hit it well. It is nothing I am worried about.
Q: How far can you kick it?
A: I do not know. Once I know it is going in, I look away and start celebrating with the guys. I swing the same for everything.
Q: Can you hit 60 yarders?
A: Yes, we hit them in practice all the time.
Q: How exhausting is it to kick six field goals a game?
A: It is more so the net (work) on the side. Every time we are in scoring position I am just kicking. Luckily, our punt returner also helped us get into position. I was staying busy.
Q: Are you at the point where you are comfortable with your spot here in Minnesota?
A: You cannot play scared and like you are going to lose your job. I go out every week and be confident.
Vikings Tight End Kyle Rudolph
Q: A win is a win right?
A: Yeah, we knew this was going to be a tough fought game. They're historically very good on defense and they've been in the playoffs six out of the last eight years so we knew it was going to be tough. We could have made it a little easier on ourselves, but Kai (Forbath) came up huge and made a ton of kicks for us today. Our defense played really well and special teams played good, so mission accomplished, we got the win.
Q: Case Keenum seemed a little off today didn't he?
A: Yeah, they did some stuff coverage wise that they mixed up and we have to make more plays for him. But Latavius (Murray) ran the ball well, the offensive line played great again. It seems like no matter who's out there they go out and play hard. Another 100 yards rushing and those guys came in and battled. Both Danny (Isidora) and Rashod (Hill) got thrown into the fire and I thought that both of them played really well.
Q: What do you think today meant to Latavius Murray?
A: It's obviously huge for him and it's huge for this team. I said it a couple weeks ago, he didn't have a preseason so the first few weeks were kind of like that for him. It's always nice when you're replacing someone with a Pro Bowl running back and that's Latavius. He came in today and showed why we brought him here and what he's capable of.
Q: Do you guys feel in control of the division?
A: Absolutely, we've felt like that for a little while now. Really coming into last week we knew that if we came here and took care of business we'd at least have a share of our division, and then it would be up to us to take it each and every week, one week at a time. All we can do now is go in and beat the Browns in London and be 1-0 next week. We can't win the division next week and we certainly could put ourselves in some trouble. So, for us it'll be about taking it each and every week.
Q: Has the next man up mentality been a trademark for this team?
A: Yeah, absolutely. Those guys work hard each and every week as well. It may be on the scout teams coach does a great job at always telling those guys you don't know when your opportunity is going to come but make sure you're prepared for when it does. I think it's a credit to Rick (Spielman) and everybody in the front office and scouting department. We have a ton of depth on this team and it doesn't matter if you're 1 or 53, we expect you to be able to help us win games.
Q: Is it easy to forget how good the defense is playing with how much of a routine it's become?
A: Yeah, they're awesome. Like I said last week, we put them in some tough spots with turnovers. Again, we get the ball with a great return from Marcus (Sherels) in plus territory and give it right back to them, yet they hold up. They're playing really well and we do a great job at playing complementary football. They have a great special teams unit and it was important for us this week to rise to the occasion and I thought we did that today. Obviously, our defense played extremely well and our offense moved the ball great we just didn't score touchdowns.
Q: What did Kai Forbath's performance mean to you guys?
A: It was huge to get points every possession. Obviously we'd like to make a few third down conversions, sustain drives and score touchdowns. But when Kai is making kicks all over the place and every time we get the ball we're putting at least three points up, we'll take it. But it'd be a lot better if we'd convert third downs and score touchdowns. That would make things a lot easier late in the fourth quarter.