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Postgame Transcripts: Week 6 at Los Angeles Rams

Interim head coach Steve Wilks

On injuries sustained in the game
"(QB PJ Walker) was cleared in the concussion protocol but he did not return because of the neck. On (CB CJ) Henderson, he is in the concussion protocol. (LB Cory) Littleton has a groin. (CB Donte) Jackson, he has an ankle. And then at the end of the game, (DE Henry) Anderson had an elbow."
Opening remarks
"I want to first start out by saying that I'm extremely proud of the men in that locker room. It was a very difficult situation this week and they found a way to circle the wagons, come together and have a great week of practice, but we didn't get the results that we wanted today. There's a lot of things that we can build on and a lot of things that we can correct. The most important thing is that we have to understand as a team is that we got a lot of football left. We get to start with our division opponents again, Tampa Bay, is coming to town. With that I will take your questions."
On what happened with WR Robbie Anderson at the end of the game
"It was a sideline-type situation that I felt like I wanted to try to get him in at the moment and that's something that we'll discuss as we further get into the week."
On how WR Robbie Anderson was acting at practice this week
"All the guys were all in. Everybody was all in. Everybody was focused. As I stated before, we had a great week of practice."
On the offensive strategy for this game
"When you look at the turnaround that we had this week, and then you're talking about a guy that's coming in that wasn't starting, so I wanted to make sure that we number one, established the run game and I thought we did a great job in that in the first half. When you look at the time of possession, we were good. We just got out of control the second half, so I thought we executed the game plan the first half."
On being a head coach again
"To be honest, it really wasn't something I was thinking about. I was just really trying to get my guys really in the best position to be successful today. So again, I'm never looking at it about being me, it's about the team."
On the fight between WR Robbie Anderson and Receivers Coach Joe Dailey
"Well, I'm going to say this, no one is bigger than the team and I'm not going to focus and put a lot of tension on one individual. We can talk about the game, we can talk about situations within the game, we can talk about the things we're going to do moving forward, but I'm not putting a lot of energy into one individual."
On losing the lead in the second half
"I think the biggest thing for us, offensively and defensively, we didn't do a great job on third down. Number one, we've got to get off the field on third down. They had a couple of third and longs that we didn't execute. They were able to convert. Then offensively, we just have to convert. So that's when you saw the shift in the swing right there with time of possession (in) the second and half."
On being aggressive at the end of the first half
"I think that's just the key. I didn't want to be aggressive at that point in time. (Offensive Coordinator) Ben (McAdoo) and I talked about it. I felt like we were in a good rhythm from the standpoint of what we were doing as far as running the ball. I didn't want to put PJ in a situation where we started having to get aggressive, spread it out. If you guys recall a couple of weeks ago, with the pick-six right before halftime, so I was really trying to manage the game at that time."
On the injuries to the defense
"Well, we've got to see exactly where we are tomorrow just from an injury report standpoint and get other guys ready to play. Hopefully, we can get some guys back this week and hopefully the injuries aren't as serious."
On if Baker Mayfield or Sam Darnold could be ready to play next week
"I couldn't really mention or say intelligently exactly what that's going to entail, so I need to figure out exactly what's going happen tomorrow with the reports."
On if Baker Mayfield is progressing in his recovery
"We wanted to make sure…he had a great workout, as I mentioned to you guys, but when we looked at the MRI, there were still some things there, so we wanted to protect him by putting him in the boot and just try to give him a couple of days off his ankle."
On if Baker Mayfield has a ligament tear
"The MRI still showed some damage. Yes, it did."
On how tough of a situation was it for a young quarterback like the Panthers had today to go up against a Super Bowl team
"I thought he handled it well. Again, we were trying to help him in the things that we were trying to do for us, just trying to manage the game, establish the line of scrimmage, run the ball, going back again not trying to be too aggressive until we had to, which, when the game somewhat got out of hand, we had to open it up a little bit."
On if he envisions Robbie Anderson being a part of the team in the offense
"Well, right now, everybody's being evaluated, as well as myself. So, we've got to figure out what's going to be the right chemistry to put out on the field offensively, defensively, and most importantly, as coaches, we've got to come up with the right game plan."
On what his message was to the guys in the locker room after the game
"I committed guys, number one, for being men. I thought they did a tremendous job dealing with the circumstances this week. We thought we had a great week of practice, but we just didn't get the results that we wanted today. Looking for those guys to challenge themselves again, come out this week ready to go, divisional opponent coming into town and we got a lot of football left. That's what I told them."
On what he saw from today's game that he looks to build on
"Well, number one, our identity, which we somewhat established a little bit today on the offensive side of the ball. We got to be able to run the ball. We got to be able to shorten the game a little bit, control the clock. And then defensively right here, we just have to find a way to get off the field on the third down and create a little bit more pressure on the quarterback."
On how can he get other players involved in the offense
"I think we can we just have to look at it as coaches. Again, based on what we wanted to do and establish the run game, try to get out of the perimeter a little bit with the screens. I thought we had several looks at times we executed, and at times we didn't. So, we just have to figure out each week what the opponent is trying to do and once again, put the guy in the best position to be successful."
On how he is going to allocate his energy for the evaluation of the team
"Well, number one, we're going to evaluate the tape. We got a long flight going back, so we'll look at the tape and figure out exactly what we did well and look at the things we need to correct. We're pushing meetings back tomorrow since we're getting in so late. And then, once we get in there, we're going to just challenge the guys to get better."
On what he felt the team did well
"First half, initially we did a great job, once again, establishing the identity of what we wanted to do which was run the football. So, I commended the guys up front. That was our plan all week and I felt like we executed that. Defensively, we stopped the run early. We just have to find a way to get off the field on third down."
On how the defense stopped us on third down the first two series and then it just went downhill from there
"Yeah, we created a few negative plays on first and second down. We got them in third and long, and when you get guys in third and long… third and 12, third and 14, we've got to get off the field."
On how he gets having a good week in practice to translate to the game
"It's just execution. I know one thing for sure, having a good week of practice gives you a chance and if you don't have a good week of practice, you're going screw up even more. I'm going to continue to challenge these guys to come to work each and every day. We're going to create that mentality on Wednesday, still putting the pads on, being physical, being tough and everything we do starts up front."
On what he does to keep the defense from getting tired when they are on the field for so long
"It comes down to them, somebody making a play and finding a way to get off the field. As you saw with D-jack (Donte Jackson) coming up with that interception and scoring on defense. So there are some positive things that we give defensively. We just have to continue to try to build on those and create more opportunities."
On if he has had any conversations with Robbie Anderson since he left the field
"No, I have not."
On if he plans to have a conversation with Robbie Anderson
"Yes, I'll have a conversation with him and then several other players as we just recap and talk about the game."
On if he's okay with wide receivers Coach Joe Dailey
"I'm okay with all of the coaches."

QB PJ Walker

On how his neck is feeling
"I'm good. I had a little sore neck soreness in my neck before the game even started so they were just being cautious about it." 

On if he was evaluated for a concussion
"I was and I passed everything." 

On what went well during the game and what were their challenges
"I thought we ran the ball well early. We just have to convert on third down and be more efficient on third down. That's really the key really is us converting on third down. We got into some third and manageables, but we got a little backed up on some third and longs as well. So just got to find ways to convert on third downs so we can keep the drives moving, keep the defense off the field a little bit." 

On the Panthers establishing a run and their game plan moving forward
"It was part of the game plan. We just have to go back and watch the tapes too, see what we have do to correct it and move to the next week." 

On how the morale is in the locker room
"I think everyone's in good spirits, and I know we have a lot of football left still. A division game coming up this week. I think everybody's looking forward to that and getting back on the field next Sunday." 

On if trade speculation is affecting the team right
"I'm not even sure about that and I'm not really paying more attention to it. Guys on the team don't pay much attention to it either." 

On what happened with WR Robbie Anderson on the sideline
"I didn't see what happened." 

On if there was an issue in the game with Robbie Anderson during the game
"No. Me and Robbie were fine the whole game." 

On how the team is in good spirits 
"We are just trying to figure out how to get it rolling. We know once we get one, we have to be able to establish to be able to find a way to get more than just one in a row then we'll get two then three. We have to be able to get going. It's a confidence thing with a lot of guys in the locker room. We just have to figure out a way to bounce back from these tough losses. I know it gets repetitive coming up here and talking about a lost week in and week out but, when it turns, I think we'll be good." 

On how he instills confidence after a tough loss
"You have to go back out there on Monday, and you have to go back to work. You have to find a way to figure it out, find a way to get a win. The approach isn't going to change. I thought we had a hell of a week of practice, and I thought we did some really good things in practice, but we came out short today." 

On what this week was like for him 
"Yes. After Monday the situation was the situation. A lot of guys got away for a day and came back to work Wednesday ready to go. You just felt the energy in the building a little bit. You felt the guys ready to go. We just have to find a way to put a four-quarter game together. We put together two good quarters, but you have to find a way to put all four together and just go out there and have a good win." 

On how it felt with Coach Wilks on the sideline 
"It felt good. The energy felt good. Everything felt really good. He does a good job getting the guys ready to go play and things like that. We just have to find ways to go get wins for him. Same way we have to go find ways to get wins for us." 

On how it was competing against the Super Bowl winning defense early in his career
"It was cool. I thought they did some really good things. They had a couple of coverages on third down that we didn't have an answer at one point, but we ended up figuring it out. So once we figured it out, it was good, but we just have to find ways to have answers for everything. That's including me trying to get to the right play. So, if I see something, I have to be able to get to it." 

On how QB Baker Mayfield was towards him leading up to the game
"He was really, really, good and really talkative, a lot of communication. He asked me what I liked on the sideline and things like that. He stayed in good talks throughout the game and just trying to find ways to just get plays rolling, trying to find things that I like to do that could help our offense." 

On how he is preparing mentally to start the next few games
"I continue to just go out there and battle every day. I have a chip on my shoulder regardless, whether the situation or not, but for me it's just to go out there and be competitive and go out there and put together two good, three good days of practice and show my consistency out there. Show that I can go out there and lead the team to wins." 

On what he saw today that gives him the feeling that this can be righted
"Yeah, it'll still be good. We show some flashes of really good things on offense out there and we just have to find ways to just keep it rolling. I just said we have to put together four quarters of really good football. We did a good job in two. Have to find a way to get an end zone as well. We only put up three points as an offense, that's unacceptable and I'll take full responsibility for that. So, I just have to go out there and be more consistent out there and move the ball up and down the field the same way I did coming out at the start of the game."

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