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Jerod Mayo knows Sunday’s performance ‘won’t be good enough any other week’

12.11.11 at 7:50 pm ET
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LANDOVER, Md. — In a game that saw the Patriots give up big play after big play to Rex Grossman, it was Jerod Mayo to the rescue with 20 seconds remaining to preserve the Patriots’ 34-27 win over the Redskins Sunday at FedExField.

He intercepted a bobble by Santana Moss on a throw from Grossman with the Redskins threatening inside the Patriots’ 10.

“Tracy [Tracy White] made a great play on the ball and kind of separated the man from the ball, and it just popped up and fell into my hands,” Mayo said.

Moss was upset following the game when asked about the offensive pass interference penalty the play before that negated the game-tying touchdown. Replays showed Mayo getting screened off on a corner route by Moss, who appeared to get his hands extended, with the side judge throwing the flag.

“I’ve been playing this game for a long time and I still find it hard to believe that it’s all right for somebody to mug us at five yards but we can’t get the guy off us, so they called pass interference on us,” Moss said. “How can I get open if a guy is going to put his hands on me, and if I put my hands back on him? You feel me? It’s just stuff that has been going on for years but we’re wrong if we do it, but if they do it, it’s OK.”

Back to the Patriots, was Mayo’s pick enough to erase what happened in the first 59 minutes, 40 seconds, when the Patriots couldn’t come up with a big defensive stop?

“A little bit, but at the same time we still want to put together a full game and, it was good enough today, but it probably won’t be good enough any other week,” Mayo said.

No one on the Patriots defense was targeted more than Devin McCourty in the first three quarters. And after giving up a 51-yard completion to Donte Stallworth in the first quarter, he knew the Redskins would be coming back his way all game.

“When you give up a play, it’s not going to stop,” McCourty said. “They’re not going to say, ‘Oh, alright, we’re done, let’s move on.’ You know, in this league, they’re going to keep going [at you]. So that’s the attitude I take, ‘How can I help this team go out on the field and make plays?’

“I don’t think confidence is a real issue,” McCourty added. “Just going out there and playing and being consistent. You’ve got to have that urgency. I think we do. What happened was we got a win today, but we know it won’t be enough [going forward]. The focus now will be going into next week and seeing if we can do better.”

Hard to imagine the game started with a strip-sack in the end zone by Andre Carter and a recovery by Vince Wilfork for the touchdown. In the end, it was New England D’s – backed up against its own goal line – that came through to save the win.

“The red zone, that’s the money downs,” said Wilfork, the defensive captain. “In the red zone, I think, defensively, you have to raise your level of play. You don’t want to give seven points up, don’t want to give any points up. Make them make the field goal. Sometime, we’ve done that and sometimes we haven’t, but the red zone is always a critical play. You have to have critical play down in that area.”

Read More: Andre Carter, Devin McCourty, Jerod Mayo, New England Patriots
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