Colts Q&A With Antoine Bethea

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The last time the Colts and Jaguars met, Colts safety Antoine Bethea repeatedly locked horns with Jaguars running back Maurice Drew. Antoine talks about their friendship and preparing for Jacksonville and another mobile quarterback in this ColtPower exclusive.

ET:  Tell us a little bit about what you've noticed about some of the Jaguars receivers you'll be facing on Sunday.

AB:  They're big receivers who go up to get the ball. And after the catch, they can make some plays. So when they do catch a ball, we've got to get them down. But we're also going to have to try to slow them down near the line before they can even get started.

ET:  Does Matt Jones with his size present any special concerns that you guys are going to have to pay attention to this week?

AB:  Not really. We'll do many of the things we did the first time we played them. They've got a number of receivers who have big play ability, so we won't be concentrating too much on any single receiver.  We're just going to go in there and do what we've got to do. At the same time, we have to give them respect because they're good receivers, but  I don't think we'll be changing anything for one receiver in particular. 

ET:  I talked to Maurice Drew this week who is also having a terrific season. He said he really enjoyed talking to you earlier this year when the two teams met...

AB:  We have the same agent, both have come in as rookies as part of the class of '06, it's good to have a relationship with someone like him and see one of your friends doing well. 

Photo: Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
ET:  He also said that although he had a good game against the Colts, it seemed like on practically every tackle you were the one bringing him down. And he said the first couple of times that he saw you closing in on him, he had a shot at bouncing away from you but decided to go at you to see what you had...and he was impressed.

AB:  I guess that's just part of the game, you want to check your opponent out. Maurice is a good running back, he's a hard runner, so I give him a lot of credit. We came out with the victory the first time, but when we go down to Jacksonville, it's going to be a lot tougher. So I'm looking forward to seeing him again this weekend and enjoying that competitive spirit once again. 

ET: Outside of Maurice, tell us what some of the biggest challenges this Jacksonville offense poses for you guys this week.

AB:  Well, as you know, in addition to Maurice they have another really good running back in Fred Taylor. They have a mobile quarterback with Garrard. He can throw the ball well, he's got a good arm, but when he wants to he can run. They have a good receiving corps with pretty good-sized receivers. So all around, they have a good offense, so we're going to have to go in there with our "A" game.

ET:  After watching what Vince Young was able to do scrambling for quite a few first downs on third down situations, do you think that's going to help you be better prepared to contain David Garrard?

AB:  Yeah, just like last week, we went into the game knowing that Vince could run. Our thing was that once he started running you had to treat him like a running back and get him down, but on some plays we weren't able to do that. Garrard and Jacksonville, I'm sure they watched the film of how Vince got out of the pocket on us and he's probably licking his chops thinking he can do the same thing. So as defensive players, when he starts to scramble, we've just all got to arrive at the football and get him down.

ET:  Do you think that was a key problem last week? Because even Bill Polian mentioned that it seemed like on too many occasions he was getting free and ending up one-on-one with a defender. And it's awfully tough to bring a guy with his ability down when you're squared off one-on-one with him. Is there going to be a similar situation with David Garrard or do you think you'll be able to do something different?

AB:  Well, it's like Mr. Polian said, trying to take on Vince Young one-on-one, that's a big task. And David Garrard is a big, strong quarterback. So if someone does end up one-on-one with him, they're going to have to do their best to get him down. But hopefully we'll all be running to the ball, so that we won't put that task on one person. We want to have 2, 3, 4 people on the ball at all times.

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