Rivera: We made too many mistakes

Head coach Ron Rivera address media after Thursday Night Football loss in Pittsburgh.

What about their pass rush that was giving you trouble today?

Well, when you get a 14-point lead it’s easy to pass rush. We put ourselves in a hole and that's the result of what happens. They did some good things against us, and unfortunately, we made too many mistakes early on to give ourselves an opportunity to win a football game.

Re: Match-up between Cameron Heyward and Christian McCaffrey

No that was trying to count their guys. They moved their guys around, put into situations where that’s what happens. Again, when you get in situations, when you got a lead like that, you can do things like that and that’s what happened.

What happened?

Well, we gave up plays over the top, something we haven't done in the last few weeks, that's what happened. Again, you get a lead, things change.

Re: The offensive line

Well, again, they did some things that were different, they brought some pressure that beat our protections, and you have to give them credit. Again, I have told you guys before that we have to make sure we are giving these guys an opportunity to win. So, we will go back and look at these things and we have to fix it.

What did you tell them at halftime?

I told them we had every opportunity to win this football game. We had to come out and get a defensive stop, and we didn't, unfortunately. That's just how it broke.

Re: James Bradberry and Donte Jackson

Unfortunately, they double moved us on the first one, and because they double moved us, James jumped on the underneath and the receiver from the inside broke to the sideline to the touchdown. Again, you just have to stay deep and stay in the lead position.

And with Donte Jackson?

He just tripped. He's running with the guy and falls.

What about Eric Reid's ejection?

I don't think that was one, I really don't. I don't think he hit him hard enough to eject him. Again, we're trying to protect the quarterback's and again, if he would have hit him as fast as he was going you know, they are trying to protect the quarterback's, and he was high.

He seemed apologetic.

He was. Again, and you saw Ben Roethlisberger's reaction, as well. So, it led me to believe that he didn't hit Ben as hard as I think they thought he did.

Re: T.J. Watt's hit on Cam Newton

Well, again, it just depends on where he hits him. We'll see. Believe me, there are times where I've seen our guys get hit, that I would like to see it, but I'm not the one making that judgment.

Cam took a lot of hits tonight, what made you decide to keep him in the game down 52-14? Well, because back then; we were going to do certain things. So, we wanted to keep giving him a little bit rhythm and get him out at the end.

What do you do in these 10 days?

Well, again, get the players away from football for a little bit. We have a nice little stretch going on. Us, as coaches, we are looking and evaluating what happened. Then make some corrections, and get ready for our next game.

Re: Good start

I thought everything was going fine until we gave up 75-yard touchdown pass. At the end of the day, we talk about staying in the lead position and we didn't, unfortunately. They ran a double move, our guy bit up on the double move, and they throw the ball over the top for a touchdown. I can't give you any other explanation than that.

Re: Interception

Right, again, Cam got trapped in the end zone and was just trying to get rid of the ball. He had two guys in line and unfortunately, he threw it over the top of one of them and it led to an interception.

Re: Special teams penalty

Again, it was disappointing and it was unfortunate.

Re: On the road

Again, we go back and look at the turnover, that’s probably the biggest thing. You know, you talk about problems with situations, we lose the turnover battle early in the first quarter, and so that's probably the biggest thing right now.

What were you most disappointed in?

Well, the big plays. We haven't given up big plays in the last three weeks. We gave several big plays early on. We hadn't turned the ball over, especially the way we did. So, if we're looking for what happened or a reason, that's probably the biggest thing. We allowed bad plays, and turned the ball over. You just can't do that and expect to win a football game.

You explain the pass rush as hot and cold earlier this week, how do you gain that consistency to get it more on the hot side?

Well, you got to give them credit. Early on, we came on and we were going to run some pressure things, started to whip the ball outside, so we were very ineffective with our pressures. Then when we started to rush forward, they were blocking six people and putting the rest to the out on the route. So, the quarterbacks had a little more time. Again, when teams mix it up that well, it's tough getting pressure on the quarterback. They did very good job at that.

What is your biggest concern with a loss like this?

Just that we bounce back. I mean we are going to take a look back at what happened. But, the truth of the matter is that it's one football game. We are 6-3 right now. So, we have seven more games to find out. Next week, we are going to get ready for Detroit, and that's what I’m going to look at. At the end of the day guys, this shit happens, and I'm going to put it just like that. Okay, let's just be honest about it. It happens. This is my 30th year in the NFL. I have seen games like this; I've been part of games like this, on both sides. At the end of the day, you continue to dwell on it and worry about it; it's going to creep in. If you get over it, and you start preparing on your next game and focusing on your next game, you give yourself the chance to win the next game. That's what we are going to do. There's no magic pill. I told that to the players in the locker-room. At the end of the day, get this one out of your system and move forward. We, as coaches, have to go to work, figure out what happened and get those things corrected, and start preparing for the next team. That's the only thing we can do. I'm not going to go to beat them down they are beat down already. Pittsburgh is a very good football team that came out and did a great job against us. We made too many mistakes expect to beat a good football team. So, we'll correct those at the end of the day.

Cam left, was he shaken up at all?

No, no they were adjusting his shoulder pads. So, he had taken them off and they were working on them. He came back out, that's what happened.


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