We carried on, but there definitely has been a piece missing. To have him back is special.

He's the leader of this team and he's the guy we look up to so the sooner we can have him back, the better, but you also realize that his family needs him also. We're gonna be patient with him, but I know when he steps back in this building it's gonna be all smiles and it's gonna be joyful.

Just to see his face was joyous.

It's a road game, so that's what you kind of expect. It kind of got us focused, like we've got to get ready to go.

The key is to practice each week like you're going to play. Even if you don't play that game, you're still developing good habits, still fine-tuning your game, so when your number is called, you're able to go out there and perform.

I know he was fired up going into the game. We had talked about how excited we were to get the opportunity. You couldn't tell he was nervous. He handled the offense well and got us in the right plays.

We wanted to go out and exemplify his character. That's what he told us at the beginning of the week — get better and try to win the game. That is the ultimate purpose. We went out and played hard and just didn't have enough.

Hopefully they are not liars.

Just to win the way we did against their starters with a lot of our backups, it shows how deep we are.