NYG Postgame (at Bears) Transcripts: RB Dion Lewis
September 20, 2020
Q: Hey Dion, obviously you couldn’t have planned for Saquon (Barkley) going down the way he did, but what was it like being thrust into the spotlight like that and having to get as many touches as you did?
A: Gotta stay ready. I prepare every week, all week, like I’m going to be in there every play because you never know what’s going to happen. So, I always stay prepared and, unfortunately, I had to go out there a little more than I normally would have to, but I was ready.
Q: Did you get a chance to talk to Saquon (Barkley) after the game? What was his mood like, where was he?
A: Yeah, I spoke with him. I just told him to keep his head up, stay positive, believe in God. Nobody knows what’s really going on right now, so just try to keep his head up. He’s a great kid, and we’ve grown extremely close since I’ve been here, so you know, definitely feel for him.
Q: How do you guys carry the running back room now, if he’s not going to be there for a while?
A: It’s going to take all of us. We got Wayne (Gallman), myself, we all gotta step up. Obviously, you know, Saquon (Barkley) is one of the best running backs in this league, so nobody’s going to be able to do what he does, what he’s done. We gotta do what we can do, be ourselves, and do whatever the coaches ask us to do and work hard every day.
Q: How big a loss is it if he’s out long term?
A: I mean, he’s Saquon Barkley, so you lose a guy like that, it’s a huge loss. But you know, as a team, everybody’s gotta step up. Receivers gotta step up, O-line’s gotta step up, running backs have gotta step up, quarterback’s gotta step up, defense has gotta step up, everybody has gotta step up. It’s not going to be one person who steps up to make up for what he’s done, it’s going to take all of us.
Q: Dion how does your role change, moving forward without Saquon (Barkley)?
A: I’m not sure. I’m going to keep working like I always work, take the same approach in practice like I always do, prepare like I’m going to be in there every play, and just stay ready. That’s how I’ve gone throughout my whole career, just always stay ready, prepare like I’m going to be the guy in there every play even (though) most of the time I’m not. So, I’m just going to keep doing what I’ve been doing, and whatever the coaches want me to do, I’m going to do it.
Q: Is there a situation in your past that prepares you for this, being thrust back into a starting role?
A: Probably, I would say, what, 2017 or ‘18, my last year with the Patriots, I didn’t get the ball much at the beginning of the year but things changed and I just started getting it. So, you know, just keep the same approach I always keep, like I said before, work hard every day. Study and prepare for the game like I’m going to be in there every play, whether it happens or not, and it’s gotten me this far, so far.
Q: Dion, the one-yard touchdown run, it seemed like the defensive line got a good push, was there a hole there, did you just have to fight through there because you knew it was 4th down, what did you see from your eyes on that touchdown run?
A: It was 4th and goal on the 1-yard line, gotta do whatever you gotta do, mindset is just get in, whatever I gotta do to get in. Kind of got low, hid behind some of the big guys, and just kept my legs moving. They did a great job getting a lot of push, I think I fell like 3 or 4 yards inside the endzone. So, the O-line did a great job, that was a key play for us in the game.
Q: Dion, you guys moved the ball better in the second half. What adjustments did (Jason) Garrett and you guys make in that second half?
A: We just started being ourselves. First half, we weren’t being ourselves, we weren’t making the plays we needed to make and everybody just stayed together in the second half, kept pushing, kept fighting, and just… all the work we’ve put in in camp, in practice, you know, we tried to make sure it paid off. All the conditioning, all the running we’ve been doing, we kind of used that to our advantage in the second half and you could see the difference between our conditioning and their condition. I think we just gotta look forward to what's to come, build off that second half, and learn from our first half mistakes. So, I think we’ve got a great week of preparation going in and trying to clean some things up.