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Bucs/Lions quotebooks

By Times staff writers

© St. Petersburg Times, published December 16, 2002


BUCS QUOTEBOOK

Running back Michael Pittman on his overall production:

"I still want to get better. I think I showed a couple of the things I can do, but I still think I can do better. I'm going to keep plugging and become the back they want me to be."

* * *

Coach Jon Gruden on winning in Detroit:

"It's a hard place to play. The Lions were 0-3, beat the Saints at 3-0 and came from behind and almost knocked off Green Bay. They are a very physical team on defense, they have a unique scheme on offense. We expected a real dogfight."

* * *

Gruden on the beauty of the win:

"They're all good when you win. (Certain media) like to rank the beauty of victories, but there are not a lot of teams in the NFL with 11 wins and I don't give a rat's behind how we get them, as long as we get them."

* * *

Safety John Howell on the importance of the win:

"I think this game was good for us. It was humbling and brought us down from the clouds we were riding high on last week. Now we have the playoff berth, but this game reminds us that this is the NFL and you have to be focused."

* * *

Linebacker Derrick Brooks on the Bucs' tackling:

"When you don't tackle, people are going to make big plays on you. The last time we played like this was Minnesota, and it p----- us off."

LIONS QUOTEBOOK

Coach Marty Mornhinweg on Joey Harrington's irregular heartbeat:

"It appeared there was absolutely nothing wrong with Joey on the field. The doctors caught it and did a heck of a job with that and took all of the necessary precautions. He wanted to go back in very badly."

* * *

Mornhinweg on the loss:

"There's no consolation in losing. Period. We had multiple chances to come up with a play to win that football game. The players are devastated much like the coaches, and we should be."

* * *

Mornhinweg on the offense:

"It was a must that we ran the football. We did an admirable job of that early. They adjusted a little, almost forced us to throw the football. We had plays downfield, and we have to make those plays."

* * *

Quarterback Mike McMahon on the game:

"I felt good, the offensive line did a great job against the best defensive line in the league."

* * *

McMahon on the Bucs:

"We had plenty of opportunities throughout this game. The defense made some good stops in the second half and we just went three and out."

* * *

Running back Rafael Cooper on the Lions backfield:

"(Aveion) Cason and I took the lack of confidence people had in us like a slap in the face. We wanted to go right at them; that was the plan."

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