On injury updates on the offensive tackles and CB Rashean Mathis: "Mathis wasn't able to finish, but he's no worse for wear. He really stepped in and did a nice job and went as long as he could and was able to get us into the fourth quarter. So that was positive. (Corey) Hilliard was not able to return to the game. Riley Reiff was. He was limited when he did return, but he was able to return and I kept a close eye on him during the sideline to make sure it wasn't a situation where he's going to hurt himself or the team and he was doing his job out there, so I think that's a little bit encouraging. Other than that, we just have a bunch of day-to-days."
On if the team will have to explore bringing in outside help at the tackle position due to the injuries: "Potentially. We just have to see this week how it goes and see where all those guys are. Jason Fox has missed a couple weeks, but he's improving. We'll see where he is. We could potentially be forced to make something, but it's too soon to tell."
On if there was a terminology mishap with the officials on the blocked field goal play: "The first thing I wanted to make sure was that it wasn't going to be an automatic review, because they automatically review scoring plays and turnovers and I wanted to make sure that they weren't classifying the blocked kick as a turnover. I know if you turn it over on downs, there's no review. But all scoring plays are reviewed. It wasn't a scoring play. And then turnovers. So I wanted to make sure of that and in my conversations with the officials, after talking to them, I decided not to challenge it. If I challenge and it ends up being an unchallengeable, then it's a 15-yard penalty. And just looking at it, where it was, it probably would have been 15 yards and the risk-reward in that situation, I decided not to pull the trigger and challenge that based on the conversations that I had. In retrospect, I probably should have challenged it right there."
On if he could have done anything different on the blocked field goal play, such as taking a timeout: "I don't know if we want to take a timeout right there, but we were already in a clock stoppage situation. I had plenty of time to talk to the officials and things like that. There were some miscommunications on the play and the communications and everything else, but that didn't cause the field goal to get blocked, that didn't have anything to do with an 82-yard touchdown or the shanked punt at the end. We had plenty of other chances to be able to make up for that play, including right after that on that drive. We did a poor job of getting them stopped."
On the lack of a running game in each of the team's three losses: "We've had some tough matchups. This was a good front. Strong linebackers, good defensive line, but we've had some of those before that we've won those matchups. I would say that that's been a common theme and the other thing that's been common is we've failed to get takeaways on defense. And when you combine both of those, it's going to make it difficult to win the game. We still played a very tough team and even though we didn't play our best, we still had a chance at the end and we didn't make enough plays to win. I'd certainly classify those as contributing factors to our losses. Lack of takeaways and lack of a consistent running game. There's one thing of having runs and being able to sort of grind things out, but we need to get some first downs in there. We need to create some explosive plays and we're at our best when we're doing that."
On what the team is doing to get turnovers in the games that they win: "I don't know if one is the cause and the other is the effect. I think we get the wins because we get the turnovers, I don't know if it's because we aren't getting the wins it is cause we aren't getting the turnovers. Offense did a good job of protecting the football. We had a chance, we were offside early in the game, which probably contributed to the sack on the quarterback and the strip but that would have been a huge play in the game. We had a couple jump balls, a couple that we knocked away and a couple we didn't come up with. We did need to make a play like that somewhere along the game, that goes a long way. Our offense has done a nice job of protecting the football, we don't turn the ball over very often on offense so defensively a turnover can make all the difference and we didn't come up with those plays."
On if the defensive line play and forcing turnovers go hand in hand: "I wouldn't necessarily say that. We had a couple good pressures early in the game. Everyone has to do their part. It's not just the d-line, it's not just them causing those plays. We have a lot of guys back there in coverage that need to make plays on their own at times. We need to blitz a little bit better. We had some effective blitzes in this game and some of them not so effective. We have to be more consistent and that is something that can create some turnovers. They did a good job of protecting the ball. I certainly don't want to pass without giving credit to them. Their running backs were secure with the football and Dalton has had some turnovers this year but traditionally over his career he is good with taking care of the football, he did that in this game and it went a long way in putting them in position to win that game."
On CB Chris Houston's confidence: "He didn't play his best game. The touchdown early but then there were other plays too. He can definitely play better and he has before and we will need him to. Confidence means a lot for corners. You are out there on an island and I've said a lot of times that it is physically the most difficult thing to do in sports. To be out there on an island and have to cover it the way the rules are and defend the guys in the passing game. Confidence definitely has a lot to do with it, he will get it back."
On CB Darius Slay's development and stepping in on Sunday: "He stepped in and did some good things. He allowed one completion, he had bad technique on that play but he played physical and went in and did his job. He has been getting a lot of practice time with Rashean Mathis having a little tweak in his groin. He is an improving player and he is trending the right way. There are some things he does very well and some things that he is still working on like a lot of young players."
On not being aggressive at the end of the first half: "They still had two timeouts in that situation so if we throw a couple incompletions right there we are going to give them the ball in a lot better position than what we had. We are going to try and get a first down, try to get the ball out there. If we would have creased them on that run and you have seen us do that before, if we crease them on a run or screen or even a short pass that goes for longer yardage we can certainly get into two-minute mode right there. Last week we were fairly aggressive there and gave the ball back to Cleveland and ended up giving up a field goal. No matter what you do there, you are going to be answering a question. That's just the nature of the game."
On the Bengals' coverage: "It was more about the coverages that we were playing, more so than them. They have a lot of talent across the board. When you start A.J. Green, they have two outstanding tight ends. Their other wide receivers are good players, strong. Running back was a tough matchup. He can spread you thin defensively."
On T LaAdrian Waddle's return to the game: "We have a lot of confidence in him. He didn't just sneak on to the 53 man roster. Thought he started off probably a little bit better than he finished. He went in and did his job. He was prepared. Did some good things. Like any player, there are some other things that he can do better and that he can work on. That will come from experience."
On his relationship with Detroit Tigers Manager Jim Leyland: "I did get to know him just a little bit. Unfortunately our seasons overlap so much that we didn't really get to spend a whole lot of time together. Certainly have a lot of respect for him. He's had a great career. I think somewhere somebody is a playing a montage of his career highlights and there's Frank Sinatra singing in the background, ‘I Did It My Way.' That would be apropos for the way that he managed and everything else. If he wasn't a manager, everyone calls the manager the skip, he would've been a captain of a ship somewhere. I think the hallmark of his managerial style would have been the same hallmark if he would've been that ship's captain. He would've been up at the helm, probably smoking a cigarette. It would have been like 20 foot swells and hurricanes coming in and he wouldn't even bat an eye. Everybody on the crew would have looked up and said, ‘Hey, things are going to be okay.' That's why I have so much respect for him. There is always second guessing and a lot of things that go on. Baseball is tough. There's a reason they call him a manager. He has to manage a lot of different personalities and things like that. I certainly learned a lot watching him up-close over these last five years. Baseball is going to miss him. Hopefully he can stay, I don't know what role they'll have, I heard that he's going to stay in the game. I think baseball will be better for him staying in the game."
On what he will be doing at age 68: "I don't know. That's a long time to think. I'm trying to worry about today. Trying to stay by the day-to-day mantra. He's had a great career. He's turned a lot of teams around. There is a lot of respect for what he has done."
On the passing of Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams: "I worked in that organization for 10 years. Certainly a sad day for that club. He's one of the original guys in the AFL. Sort of the history of the NFL also."
On his personal experiences with Adams: "He was down in Houston most of the time, but he would come up at times and always would be in the locker room after games. My interactions came more on game days and stuff like that. He had been around for so long, he had seen so many different things. There was definitely a feeling in our locker room, coaching staff and whole organization that we wanted to go out and win for him. We got to the Super Bowl, but we were a couple plays short of being able to present him a trophy."
On WR Calvin Johnson being sore after yesterday's game: "I think everybody made too big of a deal after I said he was sore last week. I think we had all but one guy play, I don't think Shaun Hill played yesterday, but I think everybody else did. There are 52 guys that you could classify as sore after the game. I mean, it's just the way it is. I'm sure he's sore after the game. He was also Megatron yesterday. He wasn't Calvin yesterday, he was Megatron yesterday. He did everything he could to get us in position to win that game."