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Jeff Fisher Weighs in On Jared Goff, Eric Dickerson, Benching G-Rob, & His Heated Convo With Gregg Williams

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Los Angeles Rams’ head coach Jeff Fisher has got a lot of explaining to do.

Los Angeles Rams v New Orleans Saints Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images

Rams Head Coach Jeff Fisher – Press Conference – November 28, 2016

(Opening remarks)

“It’s bounce-back time. Obviously, two back-to-back very difficult losses, two different losses. But I was really proud of the way the players came back and approached the game. As I said yesterday, defensively when you hold your opponent to 10, or 17, or 13, or 9 (points), whatever it is and you’re staying in games and the offense isn’t scoring points – then we had what happened to us yesterday – it’s disappointing. Every game’s different, every win is different, every loss is different and yesterday we just couldn’t get it done defensively. They had 13 drives and seven of which they scored touchdowns on. If you go back to the last two drives against Miami, we’ve given up nine touchdowns in 15 drives – that’s not us and that’s not what we’re about.

As far as the positive things in this game, as we look as coaches, special teams, again, really productive. There were some big plays, some good plays on defense, but way too many points. Looking at (QB) Jared’s (Goff) body of work, I thought he took a big step. Unfortunately, we didn’t convert on third down. We couldn’t get the stops we need defensively to give Jared chances against their defense, that had been struggling – the game slipped away. We’ll move on to the next opponent – that’s where we are at.

Injury wise, we’re going to have some guys that probably are going to miss a couple days – just the normal bumps and bruise things. I expect (T) Greg (Robinson) to be back and ready to roll. I had a good conversation with him today. He’s focused and he needed the break. We’ll just see how the rest of the guys respond.”

(On what disappointed him the most with yesterday’s loss)

“The defense was playing hard, but we weren’t making the plays. We knew this is the No. 1 rated offense in the league, and we knew (QB) Drew (Brees) was going to have a good feel for we’re doing, particularly because they had a few extra days to prepare for us. In addition to that, he was familiar with the defense. But, I didn’t anticipate the big plays down the field; the really big plays. Even coming out of halftime, we managed the two-minute drive right before half, got points, feel good about it, come out and give up a (61-yard) run the first play after halftime. Those kinds of things shouldn’t happen.”

(On why the team struggles so much outside the NFC West division)

“It’s hard to say. Coaches are game planning. We won at Tampa, we won at New York, so that’s outside the division. But, it’s been just a lack of production offensively, and then a lack of execution on defense last week.”

(On if he feels the pressure of winning out the rest of the season to produce a .500 record)

“No. As I’ve been saying week-after-week, it’s a one week at time thing. We have to focus all of our attention on the Patriots, and (QB) Tom (Brady), and the way they’re playing. They’re a great football team, and they’ve got a great record at home, our focus has to go there. That’s all we do. As I said, the guys bounced back this morning, they understood. We put it behind us. They understood the defense was very, very disappointing. But, our focus is there right now.”

(On how different QB Jared Goff was from his first game to his second, based on the film)

“There’s subtle things that you probably wouldn’t recognize. The protection adjustments, he sees things, he sees the tilt, he sees somebody, changes protection, gets himself time to throw the ball. I thought the two-minute drive was really good, even though I put him in a difficult position, and then we slowed it down. I just didn’t want Drew to come back on the field right before half. He made the throws; he stood in there and made the throws. (He’s) much more comfortable, did a better job in the run-game. Obviously, our run-game was lacking because of the point differential, and the fact that we weren’t as productive on third down, the fact that we really couldn’t stop them, and the time of possession was skewed. But, he’s much more comfortable. He was excited about playing, and he made some great throws.”

(On his thoughts regarding the rumors concerning Rams Hall Of Fame RB Eric Dickerson being banned from the sideline for his criticism towards the team)

“I don’t know where that’s coming from. I saw (Executive Vice President of Football Operations & Chief Operating Officer) Kevin (Demoff) responded via Twitter a couple of hours ago. I had a really good conversation with Eric last week, as I did with (former Rams T) Jackie Slater, and I had a good personal visit out here with (former Rams DE) Jack Youngblood. We welcome the alums. We welcome the tradition and the history. Eric has not been to practice. The last time I saw Eric in person was at Oaks Christian High School in a walk-thru prior to going out to practice against the Cowboys. I gave him a carry. I gave him a carry because I really wanted him to meet (RB) Todd (Gurley). So, I don’t know where that’s coming from, Eric. But, I did have a really good conversation with him last week, as I did Jackie and Jack Youngblood.”

(On if Dickerson is welcomed on the sideline)

“He’s always welcomed, yeah. I’d welcome him in the building. I’d love to have him come in. I’d love to have him come to practice. I’d love to have him in come in the meetings. (Former Titans RB) Eddie George has been in my meetings more than Eric Dickerson has. I’d love to have him here.”

(On how he made the decision to make Greg Robinson inactive)

“We’ve been going with seven offensive linemen for the last month, at least. I felt like we had two healthy backups, knowing that (OL) Andrew (Donnal) could play guard or go to tackle. The other positions, we needed the help. We were light in the secondary, we’re heavy at receiver right now – particularly because (WRs) Bradley (Marquez) and Michael (Thomas), they’re doing such a great job on special teams. It was hard to go to seven, but the decision with Greg, as I talked to the staff last week, he just needed a break. Guys, sometimes in their career, need a break. I know he refocused, he recharged, he rebooted and he’s ready to go. The mental errors and the penalties, it was just time. Unfortunately, we didn’t anticipate the injury to (OL) Rodger (Saffold), but I thought Andrew did a nice job bouncing outside at tackle.”

(On if he starts to worry if he’ll have the opportunity to see the team’s rebuilding process all the way through)

No, I don’t worry about it. I’m not pleased with where we are right now. Each year, each roster is different. We took over a 2-14 team and we built it, we were competitive. We’ve had quarterback issues – you guys can do the math, you know how many different quarterbacks we’ve played with. We’ve moved on, we’re moving forward with Jared. We’ve got a roster that we need to continue to upgrade. I’m disappointed with the record. I don’t think anybody really knows what we’ve been going through, but I’m in to this week, I’m in to the Patriots. I’m disappointed in last week (and) into this week and moving forward. As I told you guys before, I don’t look over my shoulder.”

(On if Robinson will return to the starting lineup or the active gameday roster)

“There’s a good chance he’s our starting left tackle this week.”

(On what gives him hope that there won’t be negative carryover going into this game against another good passing team)

“It’s a weekly game plan. As I told the coaches, I think they benefited from the extra three or four days last week and the motivation that you guys are away of between (Saints Head Coach) Sean (Payton) and (Rams Defensive Coordinator) Gregg (Williams). We got out-coached, and I told the players that – that happens sometimes and that’s the truth. This is a completely different opponent, Tom (Brady) is really, really good. We’ve got to put a plan together, go out and execute and our defense has to bounce back.”

(On clarifying his comments regarding the fact that not everyone knows what the team is going through)

“We’ve been through a lot. It’s not an excuse, but we’ve been through more than any other team in the National Football League this offseason and the moves and the travel and all those things. We’re dealing with those as best we can.”

(On his thoughts on the fans’ disappointment)

“They have the right to do that. It’s my responsibility, ultimately it’s my responsibility. The win-loss record falls on my shoulders. Again, my responsibility is to deal with this football team and get them ready to play the next game.”

(On if the broadcast’s shot of he and Gregg Williams having a heated conversation on the sidelines yesterday alludes to part of the frustration that the team is going through)

“No, it’s not. I think you need to credit the network for capturing that because it’s not the first time – it happens four or five times a game between Gregg and I. Like I said after the game, I said, ‘It’s a screen. You got the screen covered?’ (Williams’ response) ‘I got the screen covered.’ Then they went 70 yards down the field (on that drive) on the screen pass. We have those conversations all the time, that’s how we are, that’s part of it.”