ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- After a 52-20 victory Sunday, Broncos players received a well-deserved "win Monday."
"The captains on their respective sides of the ball watched some tape on their own," Head Coach John Fox explained. "They lifted and ran this morning. It creates a little bit of a shorter day for them and a little more prepration time for us."
As usual, Fox met with the media for his weekly day-after-game press conference to look back at the win, look ahead to next week's opponent and broach plenty of other topics.
Below are the highlights from the session.
On the offense's success
"We kind of started where we left off (last season). I think we just continue to get better. It’s still early in the season and I expect us to get better. People look at me funny when I say that, but there’s still a lot of areas we need to improve at and can improve at.”
On what those areas of improvement are
“Well, I think we can be more consistent running the ball. We left points out on the field yesterday. A personal foul penalty knocked us out of field goal range and out of the scoring zone. I think it was right before halftime. I think we’ve kind of gotten the start squared away. We kind of go into a little bit of a lull sometimes in the fourth quarter that we need to get worked out. There’s plenty that we need to work on.”
On whether it’s hard to come up with things to work on
“Our guys work really hard. We stress the preparation in the meetings, on the practice field. The most important two hours of the day, we call them ‘mini games.’ The preparation part – guys work hard. We have smart, tough, hard-working guys. If we can just keep getting better and better, that’s the goal. We want to be playing our best football in February.”
On the mindset of scoring 52 points yet still looking to improve
“We just try to play the best we can. Smart and tough, as perfect as we can every play. When you look up and you have 52 points, or whatever the point total is, we don’t scoreboard watch. We’re just trying to execute each play, one play at a time.”
On whether anything less than the Super Bowl would be a failure
“You know, again, we’re just in the race. We’re one quarter into the race. Our goals are high, make no mistake about it. It felt like we had that opportunity a year ago and let it slip through our hands. I think, as I mentioned even after that, there should be a fire in everyone’s belly to work hard to improve on that.”
On keeping his players level-headed
"You don’t get too high, you don’t get too low, you’re never as good as they say you are, you’re never as bad as they say you are. You just try to stay even keeled and work at your craft every day. The old adage in this league is if you’re not getting better, you’re getting worse. You don’t stay the same.”
On Defensive Coordinator Jack Del Rio as a candidate for the head coaching position at USC
“I think right now there’s a long list of candidates for the USC job, like any job. He’s definitely qualified. I know right now, other than – again – sources and talking heads, everybody’s a candidate at this point. And that’s all I know. If anything else happens that I can relate to you, I will. I know Jack’s focused on Dallas right now and very hard at work. He wasn’t at LAX. I was with him actually at Del Frisco’s when that came out."
On whether the only team that will end up beating the Broncos is themselves
“No, I can’t say that. There’s a lot of great teams. You guys look at the records, we actually study the tape. Everybody’s got players. There are no cupcakes. Everybody’s good. Usually the guys that wins is the guy that has the best reason to be in there. We’re just trying to remain to be that guy.”
On the AFC West’s success this season
“I think it’s what makes this game great. The National Football League, people go from the outhouse to the penthouse and the penthouse to the outhouse it seems like overnight. Everybody says, ‘Well, how do you like your schedule?’ Well, you know what, this year’s schedule doesn’t have anything to do with last year’s. Teams change. Records change. Two years ago, I remember the NFC West was the laughing stock. Now, there’s two teams in that one people talk about as Super Bowl contenders. It changes from year to year, and drastically in many cases. It doesn’t surprise me at all.”
“I’ve been impressed with him. I joked with him that if we’d have won the Baltimore game, he might have been the guy on Dancing with the Stars. He returned two kicks in a playoff game, which has never been done before. He’s got a chance to be special. He’s worked very hard, he’s fielding the ball way more consistently. I think his speed, quickness and acceleration is pretty well documented. And had some good blocking for him on the return yesterday. So again, it’s another team thing. I mean, he’s a tremendous talent, but he needs people blocking for him for him to be successful.”