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Gibbs Post-Game: Redskins-Lions

Opening Statement:

"From our standpoint, I'm proud of our guys. We have a bunch of guys who fight hard every week. Every game we've played has been a close game. The Lions are a team going in the right direction. Their front seven is about as good as we've played against. Really for us, I made up my mind when we got the lead that we needed to make sure we didn't beat ourselves. So we tried to play it fairly cautious and I wanted to make sure our defense had a chance to keep them from going a long way. It was a field position game, they were really backed up, we were really backed up. It was important that we didn't turn the ball over. It was an extremely hard fought game."

On injuries:

"My concern is that we keep losing people. Phillip Daniels hurt his groin again. If we sustain two or three injuries like that and you always worry it's going to take our toll."

On special teams:

"I gave James Thrash a game ball and I know Walt Harris made a great play on the blocked punt. The thing with our football team is that every game has been a fourth-quarter game and so any score we could get was going to be a big deal for us. For us to get a touchdown on special teams was important. And I thought our special teams played solid all game."

On the punt block:

"We've had a punt block up every week, it's just a matter of when Danny Smith chooses to use it. In that case, it kind of looked like they got off a bad snap and that gave us time to get back there. We'd been taking shots all the way from the start of the regular season and we finally got one and it came at a good time for us."

On Clinton Portis:

"Clinton is, I have to tell you, as tough as he is when he's carrying the football, it's everything he does when he's not carrying it. He's very aggressive. He plays the game because he loves it and I think he plays extremely hard. We'd been talking about as many times he's carried the ball, but if you look at him over on the sidelines, he never looks tired. I told Earnest Byner, make sure you keep Ladell Betts ready, because we like Ladell and we think he can make good plays for us. But Clinton was coming over to the sidelines and telling us what he wants. And if he's asking for it, I'm going to give it to him."

On the trick play for a touchdown:

"Clinton was talking up that trick play for about eight weeks. He told me he could throw the football. And after we threw it, he wanted to throw it again. He said, 'They won't expect it this time.' I said, 'You're right, they won't expect it because we're not calling it.' I think he gets a kick out of it. He told me a long time ago that he could throw the football. From where I was standing, it took a pretty good throw. He kind of threaded it in there into the corner of the end zone."

On Portis's 34 carries:

"Last week, I felt like we fell behind and I didn't give him enough carries. So it kind of goes week to week. This front group that Detroit has is probably as good as anybody we've played. They're hard to get yards on. We hit some things in there, we got him going and I thought we played a great ball game. Our offensive line deserves a lot of the credit there and Ladell did his part, too."

On punter Tom Tupa:

"The other guy who played extremely well today is Tom Tupa. When you punt the ball like that, and you can run the ball well, and if you're defense plays well, there is a formula there that you try to go with. I know I was affected by the field position as the game got underway. A lot of times you start the game and you have some things you're going to try and do, and as the game goes along, you say to yourself, what we have to do on offense is control the ball and not put our defense in bad situations."

On the passing game:

"With our passing game, we're not getting what we want. I went pretty conservative later on in the game. I don't know how many times we threw the ball, but it can't be many. So I kept us from going after things today."

On the play of Cornelius Griffin:

"Last week, I was really concerned about Cornelius because he has some bruised shoulders. He's one of the classiest guys you're ever going to be around. He's a great person. He's a solid character person. And as a football player, he's a big strong guy. We have somebody at defensive tackle who we think is a star."

On the costly penalties:

"It's a real concern for me. I didn't see that last hit out of bounds. The thing we talked about at the beginning, in the NFL there are certain things the refs are going to watch. If you hit anybody out of bounds, you run the risk of a real penalty. Our guys know that. We can't be doing that. Then we get a taunting penalty on defense. And then Clinton gets upset and he gets a penalty. With the kind of games we're playing, you're not going to win close games. Any kind of exchange of field position is huge. We have to fight for every yard--that's the kind of football team we have right now. Those kinds of things will just kill you. Our guys have to be smart. Those are things you just can't do. We hurt ourselves down on the goal line on the touchdown pass. We had a false start there."

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