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Bills QB Nathan Peterman: How you react to bad stuff 'defines you in life'

Here is the transcript of Bills quarterback Nathan Peterman's meeting with reporters on Wednesday.

Q: Nate, after everything you’ve gone through [and] knowing that you might start this week, do you think at any level what could be riding on it for you or anything like that and how important this start could be for you and your professional career moving forward?

A: It’s another game [and I’m] thankful for another opportunity if that’s the case and ready to go out and perform.

Q: The last two times you’ve had to come in, you’ve done it cold off the bench. Did you get a full, working day of install today? Do you feel like that can benefit you if you have to play Sunday?

A: Yeah, it was good to get that familiarity again, that comfortability within our system with our guys is huge. We’ve got two more days of good practice that we have to put in.

Q: I know the mindset is usually the next game, but do you have any perspective of [the fact that] this could be your last opportunity to make an impression here as a professional?

A: I take it one day at a time, so I know we have a great challenge ahead of us here with the Bears. I’m excited; [they have a] great defense and whoever it is, I’ll be ready regardless.

Q: On paper Nate, the Bears look opportunistic. What do they look like on film?

A: Very talented. Obviously, they have a great pass rush, great in the backend as well, athletic linebackers, and they’re a good defense, so we have to be on our best game to beat them.

Q: Is there any benefit to going back and looking at preseason game tape even though they were probably playing super vanilla? Is there anything to be taken from that at all, at least having both teams on the field for your review?

A: Yeah, it’s kind of day one install for both teams, but still good, I guess, just to get a feel for it. [I’ve] watched a lot of film, so there’s multiple things you can take away from a lot of games.

Q: Nate, the numbers are the numbers. You’ve thrown ten interceptions in the times you’ve had to play. I know you’ve probably gone back and looked at it all, but what do you attribute the problems to if you had to dissect it? Ten picks in 84 attempted is a lot of interceptions. Can you shed some light on what you’re seeing?

A: It’s a wild bag, honestly. Each one has their own story and own lessons from it. I think that’s the biggest thing; I’ve taken a lot of those lessons and I’ve learned from them. Moving forward, really the goal is to learn from them and be better.

Q: When you left the field in Houston, how down might you have been and did you anticipate that you would get this new opportunity here today?

A: I’m still here and every time you’re here, every time you step on this field and you’re in this building every week, I’m always ready. I was ready last week and I’m going to be ready again this week.

Q: What does it say to you about this organization and the people inside this building to stick with you and still have confidence in you after what you’ve been through?

A: Yeah, it says a lot. [I’m] thankful to be here as a Bill, for sure. [I have] a lot of great relationships in this building and I’m going to go out there and do my best to get us a win.

Q: Why do you think your performance from the preseason hasn’t been able to carry over to the regular season?

A: I think [it’s] opportunities and chances that it goes one way. It’s football; you can’t predict how it’s going to go. The ball doesn’t bounce your way sometimes and you have to go ahead and move forward and learn from the mistakes and move on.

Q: Earlier, Sean [McDermott] was talking about players’ confidence. He said that within this building, there’s some kind of coaching that goes along with that. Is that some of the programs that you’ve maybe taken advantage of?

A: What do you mean ‘coaching’?

Q: Almost like a psychologist is what he was alluding to, just to try and help players with confidence and stuff.

A: Yeah, there’s definitely a lot of resources, I guess, in this building and I think we have a great support staff with our chaplain Len [Vanden Bos] and multiple guys. I think it’s important, and as a professional athlete, you’ve got to be able to move on and keep your confidence high, especially as a quarterback. That’s the most valuable asset I’d say as a quarterback is confidence. It’s important to keep that high.

Q: Along those lines, what have you found the most challenging about regular season action and the results that have taken place, what is the challenge or hurdle?

A: It’s really just the different scenarios that happen. They’re different in the regular season and preseason for sure, but at the same time, football is football. Like I said, the ball bounces your way sometimes and it doesn’t other times. Mistakes are in the past; I’ve learned from them and taken them to heart for sure. I’ll never forget them, but I’ve learned from them and I’ll move on. [With] football, it’s a new game every week.

Q: Nate at any point, do you just go “What have I done wrong to deserve the stuff that’s happening?”

A: I don’t. I think that stuff happens in life, whether good or bad. How you react to it is really what I think makes you who you are, and I think that’s what’s made me who I am [with] everything I’ve gone through in the past. That’s who I am standing in front of you today and trying to go out and learn from those things and be better.

Q: You always seem to us like you’re the same guy no matter what happens. You’re never too high, never too low, kind of lowkey. Have you always been like that and what do you attribute that to in your life?

A: Yeah, I have, absolutely. I definitely attribute that to my faith, absolutely, to be even keeled and know that God’s with you through it all. It’s life, I mean if anybody here has been through a bunch of perfect things in their life and nothing’s ever gone wrong, I’m extremely happy for you, but that doesn’t happen very much to the people I know and obviously me. I’m thankful for all the opportunities I’ve been through, all the lessons I’ve learned and [I’m] ready to be better from them.

Q: At some point, doesn’t it have to even out, like on the football field? I did in college, but it hasn’t yet at the NFL level.

A: Yeah, it hasn’t yet.

Q: But shouldn’t it?

A: I don’t know the future. If you do, you tell me. My thing is [that] I take it one day at a time. I’m ready to go win a game and be my best every time I take that field. I’m thankful every time I take that field.

Q: As an offense, points have been tough to come by for this group the past few weeks. How do you guys, chiefly the guys will the ball in their hands, guard against pressing or maybe doing too much to try and fix that problem and just staying within the scope of the offense?

A: I think it’s trust. Trust in your teammates, trust in the plan that we have and what we’re trying to do every day and every snap. Just trust in the plays and doing your job every play; that’s what it comes down to. Not trying to do too much, not trying to do something that’s not your job. Just doing what you can.

Q: How do you make sure the past mistakes don’t affect the way you play and your willingness to try and take chances with the football?

A: Yeah, you just have to keep your confidence high, obviously learn from those mistakes, but be the same player that you’ve been all along and go out there and rip it. The chips will fall as they lie.

Q: In regards to the Bears, do you think the linebackers disguise what they’re doing pretty well?

A: Yeah, I think they do a great job of disguise all throughout, obviously from their secondary on and then with the three-four defense. They do a good job of mixing up who’s coming, so you have to be on top of your game for that.

Q: Nathan, you keep saying mistakes are in the past, mistakes are in the past. How do you psychologically compartmentalize that so that stuff stays there?

A: I think you just look at everyday like a new opportunity and that’s what I’ve always done is look at it like a new opportunity and not tie yourself to those things and move on.

Q: No offense, but you’ve been a punching bag national media-wise, they show the interceptions, all the stupid stuff. How do you, I don’t know if you can ignore it, but do you ignore it? Are you made aware of it by guys who are busting you? How do you deal with it?

A: I do ignore it. I don’t have much social media on my phone and I just kind of live day to day with what’s in front of me, the guys in this locker room and obviously my family at home. I’m thankful to be out here throwing the ball and playing football every day and have another opportunity.

Q: Are there certain guys in the locker room that you’ve leaned on more so than others to help you continue to move forward?

A: I think there’s been a lot of guys. I don’t know to name a few, because everybody’s been so helpful and really just supportive. I think all of them know what a tough game it is and that things don’t always go your way. At the same time, I have to keep fighting and stay in there.

Q: Is there any part of you that feels like you can benefit from the mistakes [and the mentality that] what do you have to lose?

A: I don’t know, I don’t know if I look at it like that. Just look at it like I’m going to go play my best every time I’m out there. That’s what I’m going to be focused on doing.

Q: As a quarterback in the NFL, do you have some added motivation given everything you’ve been through and having this opportunity resurfacing?

A: Yeah, I always play with an edge, I think, and it’s the way I’ve always been, just [trying to] find and edge somehow, someway. This definitely helps.

Q: What have you learned from Derek [Anderson] since he’s been here?

A: A lot. I think he’s been great having a guy that’s 14 years, I think, with that knowledge and to see him even how he acted the last two weeks, how he took control of the huddle and really helped our offense.

Q: Over the last year, you’ve gotten the chance to know a lot of different quarterbacks. Do you look around the room every once in a while and go, “I wonder who’s going to be in here next week?”

A: Yeah, it’s been a lot, but that’s life in the NFL.


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