Q. What were some of your big takeaways from how QB Gardner Minshew played? (Dave Zangaro)
SHANE STEICHEN: I thought [QB] Gardner [Minshew] was really efficient throwing the football. He got the ball out of his hands quickly, really efficient on 3rd down, made some really good plays. That 4th-and-2 hit to [WR] DeVonta [Smith], he was coming out and we had [TE] Dallas [Goedert] in the flat and [Cowboys CB Trevon] Diggs passed it off and tried to take Dallas, and he snapped around, flipped his hips and hit the big one.
Then the 3rd down to DeVonta in the red zone versus blitz zero was really good, too. He had off coverage right there and liked what he saw, and DeVonta ran a great route and he laid it just out in front for him to catch it.
Overall, really strong performance by him I thought.
Q. As good as WR DeVonta Smith was last year and early this year, seems like he’s taken things to another level the last month. Has he shown you anything during that stretch that you didn’t know about him? (Reuben Frank)
SHANE STEICHEN: No, nothing surprises me with him. He’s an elite receiver, and those guys that work and grind every week to get themselves ready to play are going to do good things. That’s what he’s been doing, and he’s continuing to grow as a receiver. He’s seeing it well. The coverages, how to adjust his route in certain coverages and find the dead spots and the holes, and then he’s making elite catches. He had some big-time catches on the end cut, he had one on the sideline and just having an awareness where the sideline is and getting both feet down, he’s been very impressive.
Q. The fact that you may face Dallas again in the postseason, how much does that go into your thinking as you’re prepping for a game? Do you want to show them something so you can show a counter later or you don’t want to show them something? (Tim McManus)
SHANE STEICHEN: I think really any game you go in and you do what you need to do to win the football game. I think that’s our mindset in every game. It’s like, oh, do we not want to show this because we might face them again; no, like you have to do what you need to do to win the game. But then obviously looking at the film, it’s like if we do face these guys again in the playoffs, what can we do to counter the stuff that we did against them in previous games.
Q. On the two interceptions, was there any sort of teaching points on both ends of that, QB Gardner Minshew and WR Quez Watkins? (John McMullen)
SHANE STEICHEN: The one on the slant, that was a really good play by the DB. It was a bang-bang play. Credit to them in that situation.
The other one was just like a little pivot over the ball. It was just off by a little bit. Sometimes those things happen, and we know that we have to get those things cleaned up. When you turn it over four times and put our defense in bad situations like we did with short fields, we know that we can’t do that. That’s one of our formulas is taking care of the football, and we didn’t do a good enough job doing that.
Q. I saw QB Jalen Hurts had the headset on during the game. Was he just listening or was he having input into what he was seeing? (Chris Franklin)
SHANE STEICHEN: He was just listening just like when most quarterbacks are out, they all have a little earpiece in or headset on and listening to the calls.
Q. Would you have done anything differently on those last three throws? (Jeff McLane)
SHANE STEICHEN: You know what, in those situations, you always look back like shoot, could we have called this, could I have called this in this situation here. There were a few things where obviously we clocked it there and then it was 2nd and 10 and I went with, hey, I think they’re going to be in this coverage, so this is a good all-around beater for the coverages that I think they’re going to play. And just more so instead of guessing like, oh, they might be in zero here or they might be in this, like hey, what’s a play that’s going to be a good pure progression to where he’s got answers. They played it well; credit to them defensively.
Q. What’s the benefit of clocking it as opposed to — you probably could have called time around 0:38 and had four shots? (Reuben Frank)
SHANE STEICHEN: I think right there you can save your time-out in that situation. I thought it was the right decision there to clock it. Then you have three downs there, and obviously if you get a 1st down inside the 10 or whatever and now you call your time-out and then you have three shots. That’s just the way we went with it.
Q. Without T Lane Johnson, you guys have couple options obviously. What do you weigh in making that decision? (Dave Zangaro)
SHANE STEICHEN: Those are things we’ll work through this week. We feel good about our options, and obviously we’ll work through that, and I know [Run Game Coordinator/Offensive Line coach Jeff] Stout [Stoutland] will have those guys ready to play.
Q. Does T Lane Johnson being out change the game planning? (Jeff Neiburg)
SHANE STEICHEN: We’re going to do what we do; same deal.
Q. TE Dallas Goedert has the best catch rate in the NFL amongst receivers and tight ends. Obviously, he’s coming back, he’s injured, but were they doing anything to take him away, why did he only have three targets? (Jeff McLane)
SHANE STEICHEN: Well, he had three catches. We had a lot more schemed up for him, and sometimes the coverage dictates where the ball goes. That’s what happened on a few of those plays.
He was the first read in the progression, like even the 3rd down where [QB] Gardner [Minshew] scrambled out there, [WR] DeVonta [Smith] was the fourth read in that progression, and he ended up getting the catch there, and [TE] Dallas [Goedert] was the first progression.
Same thing on another 3rd down, Dallas was the first progression, and we threw the ball to the back. There are certain times obviously that the coverage is going to dictate where it goes.
Q. How did you walk away feeling about the offensive performance and the game planning and all that? Was there anything you walk away thinking you would have done a little bit differently or were you just generally pleased with it? (Tim McManus)
SHANE STEICHEN: I mean, pleased for the most part. There are always things you can clean up and do better. The biggest thing is we have to take care of the football. That’s the No. 1 thing, No. 1 goal every week is we can’t turn the football over. We know when you turn the ball over four times, you’re probably not going to win the game. So, we have to do a good job taking care of the football going forward.
Q. Do you think Dallas played you a lot differently without QB Jalen Hurts, especially in the run game, not having that threat on sort of the backside? (John McMullen)
SHANE STEICHEN: They did some different things, but most of their scheme was similar from a coverage standpoint. But credit to them, they played well, and they got it done, and we have to do a better job.
Q. How do you go about this week in terms of quarterback distribution? (Tim McManus)
SHANE STEICHEN: Same as last week, it’s day by day. We’re working through those things. If [QB] Jalen [Hurts] is ready to play, he’ll play, but we have to have a plan for both of those guys.
Q. Is there any coaching point for RB Miles Sanders with the two fumbles over the past two weeks? (Bo Wulf)
SHANE STEICHEN: It’s the same thing we talk about. Just wrist above the elbow, eagle claw, elbow lock when you’re going through traffic, but he’ll bounce back, and he’ll have a good game this week.
Q. What happened with the exchange between QB Gardner Minshew and RB Boston Scott? (Jimmy Kempski)
SHANE STEICHEN: It’s hard. We went back and looked at it, and really it was a fluke thing. But we have to continue to work on the ball handling. We work on ball handling a ton, but we have to do it more.
Q. Is there anything that QB Jalen Hurts could glean from watching just having a week off and watching QB Gardner Minshew and how he executed the offense? (Jeff McLane)
SHANE STEICHEN: I think you can always learn from anybody. If you’re not playing, you can learn from those situations, anything that comes up in the game, certain coverages, blitzes, all those different things. But yeah, you can always learn.