Ryan Clark Super Bowl XLV Post Game Press Conference

(on if he can describe what kind of battle it was) “It was a battle. Look at the plays they made defensively, some of the throws Aaron Rodgers made. On the touchdown to (Greg) Jennings in the first half, I knew the play. I was in a coverage where I wasn’t supposed to be there and I schemed it up so I could try to get a jump on it. He just threw it right by me. They were the better team today. They executed better. They made more plays. But it was a fight. I don’t think they’re going to go away thinking that they played a team who can’t play with them. But they know they were better today. They deserved to win.”

(on if plays where they were so close were symbolic of the game) “It was. It just wasn’t for us. You think about the play he throws to Jennings down the middle on Ike (Taylor), the one where I come over and miss the ball. It was like they were a hair faster than we were all night, and that’s why they won the game. They executed better. They played better than we did, and they deserved to win.”

(on what coach Mike Tomlin said at halftime) “We had been there before, but he said, ‘Just because you’re built for it doesn’t mean it’s going to happen. You have to make it happen.’ I think we came out and we played that way. I think guys came out and played hard. We were effective defensively in that third quarter to kind of get us back in the game but just didn’t come up with the plays when we needed them. Allowing them to get that field goal on that last drive in the fourth quarter was huge. It was really what turned the field position, made us have to get another score when the offense had fought back to get within a field goal. So it was just tough. Coach Tomlin said, ‘Come out and do it. It’s not going to happen just because you’ve been here before.’ We didn’t finish.”

(on the finality and what went through his mind)(I felt) that I’d rather not come if I’m not going to win. I’d rather not be here. I was hoping that only the winners had to talk after the game. That was my feeling. I’d just rather not be here if I’m not going to take home the trophy.”

(on if it’s hard to appreciate all that they accomplished after the loss) “Yeah. Without a doubt. Just talking to Troy (Polamalu), it’s like, ‘What do you do now? Where do you go from here?’ Nothing separates us from the other 30 teams that weren’t here tonight. We’re just like them. All the work, all the adversity we overcame, it’s for nothing. We didn’t finish the job.”

(on if he plays in another Super Bowl if he’ll have more pity for the guys on the other side more now) “No. To win the Super Bowl, man, it’s an amazing feeling. It’s a feeling of satisfaction. It’s a feeling of fulfillment in your job. To lose it, to actually be here and lose it, I don’t know. There’s nothing worse athletically. There’s other things in life that could happen, but nothing worse athletically.”

(on if they beat themselves) “It’s disrespectful to say they didn’t beat us. Of course there’s some things we feel like we could’ve done better, but it would be totally disrespectful. So they won the game. The Green Bay Packers played better than the Pittsburgh Steelers. Period, point blank.”

(on the errors on defense) “We didn’t make many mental errors defensively. I can’t really speak about the offense, but we didn’t have many mental errors. They just made some plays. Like I said, the pass to (Greg) Jennings, I think I even touched the ball. I was real close to it, and they made that play. You think about the third and 10 in the fourth quarter, another pass to Jennings down the middle. I think he did a good job of reading us and just going out and doing what he had to do. It wasn’t about mistakes, it wasn’t about rust. They played better than we did. I think the score didn’t get as high (as when Green Bay and Pittsburgh played last year); I think the defenses made a couple of more stands than we did last year. But I think both offenses moved the ball very effectively, especially Green Bay. Aaron Rodgers threw some passes tonight that I think other quarterbacks don’t make.”

(on if a defensive back has to be perfect if Rodgers is as accurate as he was tonight) “In our scheme at times, we play a fire zone scheme, so we’re around guys and not necessarily on them. With a guy like Aaron Rodgers, you need to be stuck to your man like glue. He threw pinpoint passes all day. If we had them covered over the top, he threw it back shoulder. If you were a little bit underneath, he threw it over the top. So he was very effective. Also, I think when they did attempt to run the ball, they ran the ball well. We just didn’t play well. Troy (Polamalu) and I talk constantly that if he and I play well, we won’t lose. That doesn’t necessarily mean that us playing well makes us win, but we know we won’t lose. And I don’t think neither one of us is excited or feels like we did the things today to help the team win.”

I am, I'm me. 40 something, retired and a life long Steelers fan.
  • Don

    Wow. That was excellent and straight to the point.