Ike speaks to Seattle press
Q: This is a big game Sunday.
Bruce: “Oh yeah, yeah, yeah, definitely. Huge game this week. Divisional foe. It will be as exciting as it can get. Not much talk needed.”
Q: What do you think of the recent rivalry between the Seahawks and Rams?
Bruce: “I think it’s growing with just everyone in the NFC West right now. I think it’s pretty even right now, and everytime we face one of our division foes it’s an exciting game. I think the entire division is growing.”
Q: What was the biggest thing for you in coming back to win in the last game?
Bruce: “The biggest thing was, it was the biggest game that week for us because it was the only game that week for us. We sought a lot of confidence throughout individual players, players that hadn’t really lived up to their potential, but I think that game made it possible for those guys to go out the following week and believe that they could play at the same level.”
Q: Have you ever been on the other end of a comeback like that one?
Bruce: “I probably have, I just can’t remember right now.”
Q: What was the feeling after being in a comeback like that?
Bruce: “I think it was kind of a shocker in the beginning. It kind of lingers with you throughout your day off. Then on Wednesday and Thursday it’s kind of with you a little bit, hard to shake off, then by Friday you realize you have another opponent to play. It may affect your performance in the following game if you let it.”
Q: What do you think is the Seahawks' motivation this week?
Bruce: “I believe their main focus, and their first and foremost motivation, is taking an outright lead in this division; the same as ours. It makes for a great game and makes for an exciting game. It makes for a game that will be played for four quarters.”
Q: It looked like you were taunting after the come-from-behind win.
Bruce: “I don’t think I was taunting, I was just excited that we won. I was being taunted the entire game, I had no problem being taunted. Everyone in that stadium that day had a pretty good laugh, everybody that was there, media, their fans, our fans, everybody.”
Q: Why were the Seattle fans laughing?
Bruce: “They were laughing at us the whole game. Things they say, it’s funny. Some of the close-ups you get when sitting on the bench with their fans behind us, some of the stuff that they say is kind of funny when you think about it. Some other guys need work on their healing, but it was an exciting place. They have a nice stadium there and I think in the years to come they are going to win a lot of games because of their fans.”
Q: Do you remember any particular taunts you received?
Bruce: “No, I didn’t get any personally. But I think they kind of got on Tory about the whole Monday Night ‘Sacked’ deal and the stuff that happened that night, which I thought was pretty funny.”
Q: Did you see Grant Wistrom getting sacked ("You Got Sacked") on Monday Night Football?
Bruce: “No, I didn’t see. I heard about it and I know Grant can get really wired up. definitely, when he believes he is in the right. I know Grant Wistrom.”
Q: Grant was dressed like Willy Wonka during the prank.
Bruce: “I believe that. I know Grant Wistrom, he’s a funny man.”
Q: Do you feel any differently about the Seahawks after that game?
Bruce: “No, I don’t. I feel like they are one of the better teams in this league. You look around the board, their special teams are good and every time you look up 85 (Alex Bannister) is making the play. They have a good return game. You look at their defense and they have playmakers all over the field on the defensive line and at the linebacker position and at the safety and defensive backs. They’re good players and they are coached very well. Their running back is amazing.”
Q: Did you feel there was a lack of respect from the Seahawks in the last game?
Bruce: “No, I didn’t. I believe that both teams respected each other to the standpoint of we knew exactly what we were facing. They knew our history, we knew their history, we knew what they were trying to achieve and they knew what we were trying to achieve. It was a mutual respect and, like I said, those guys made plays. They played at home that first game and used that crowd to push them to the point where they had a big lead on us.”
Q: There's a perception that people think you're old and Torry Holt is taking the lead.
Bruce: “There's no secret, but my thing is: people will mention me or say different things about me either good or bad, and the important thing is what you say about yourself. I never consider myself as being old. Even Mr. Rice there in Seattle never considers himself to be old, he can still get open and he can still run. The biggest thing I’ve seen from Jerry Rice is that he still considers himself the same person he’s always been, and if he’s changing in any area or anything about his game it’s getting better, not getting worse. That’s the same principle or method that I use when I get up in the morning feeling great: I roll out of bed, jump out of bed. You put a second-year guy in front of me, I’m going to run by him. You put a 14-year guy in front of me, I’m going to run by him too. That’s the way I believe and that’s the way I approach not only football but everything else in my life.”
Q: How important do you think this game is for Wistrom if he plays this week?
Bruce: “Very important. Grant is from Webb City, Missouri, his family and friends, but not only that he's going to be playing against his St. Louis family. You always play hard against your family members for some reason, I don’t know why that is. But knowing the type of guy that he is I’m surprised he's been out as long as he has. I saw Grant go through a lot of injuries here. During our Super Bowl year he had a shoulder that was pretty much just hanging and the guy stayed in. You can learn stuff from a guy like Grant. With me being in my eleventh season, I can still learn a lot from his will, determination, and never give up attitude.”
Q: What happened in your loss to New England?
Bruce: “I think that we didn’t match their intensity as far as being physical. I think that they came out in all areas of the game and pretty much just hit us in the mouth and we didn’t really hit back. I think they came out and forced turnovers, and in this league if you turn the football over it’s very hard to win. And we didn’t get the big turnover. They play that way, that’s pretty much how they win, and they executed it.”
Q: Do you think Shaun Alexander is getting much attention around the league?
Bruce: “I don’t think he gets as much attention as he deserves. I think he is definitely one of the better running backs in this league. He has good vision and he runs like he's from the south. Meaning, that he played in the SEC, which is one of the toughest conferences in the nation to play in. He runs with great strength and at the same time can run away from you. That’s kind of the mold of an SEC-type guy.”
Q: Is it tough to have a great offense but a struggling defense?
Bruce: “We don’t separate ourselves. We don’t go offense and defense, that’s never been what’s taught around here. We just go by being a team guy. We keep everybody up, we make sure that we’re all making plays and I think we’re men enough to go to one another to make each other have accountability on what we’re trying to achieve here. That door is always open and we utilize it and we make sure that we’re all on the same page.”