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March 11, 2016

Jordan Spieth

Palm Harbor, Florida

Q. What was the difference, how did it feel today?
JORDAN SPIETH: Just more greens in regulation. I just hit some poor shots yesterday. I knew I wasn't far off. Play well in the Pro-Am.

I've been playing well this week since we've been here. Just was a really off day yesterday with everything. Very difficult to make putts on these greens because you have to hit them a lot harder than you're used to. Still didn't get any putts to go today. Lucky I chipped in a couple times to make up for it.

Q. Just have a look at these. If I can just rerun them with you.
JORDAN SPIETH: The 3rd I hit a nice 6-iron in there, really a good number for me. Committed to the club and hit a nice solid shot, landed just below the hole and knocked it in, the putt, which was a big birdie there considering I lost maybe two shots.

Q. Absolutely right. You mentioned a couple chip-ins today. Nice touch around the greens.
JORDAN SPIETH: First time I ever bellied a wedge in my life. I think I may keep on doing it if I get that opportunity. Normally I putt those. I got to get halfway up on the ball here. It was sitting down a little in the grass. That was obviously very fortunate.

Q. You really get the momentum here. Coming home, the final three hole stretch, again, another nice bonus.
JORDAN SPIETH: 11 through 14 I thought I would grab a couple birdies. The putts wouldn't go in. The chip off of kind of a tough lie behind the green goes in. A weird game sometimes.

I felt like I really -- I would have had a birdie or two in there with the way I was playing but I was fortunate to get that one, a little breathing room.

Q. We see the tournament, the leaders are 5-under. You're right in the mix with 36 holes. Kind of weird, isn't it, how it plays out?
JORDAN SPIETH: It is a bit odd. Kind of normal around here at Innisbrook. To be honest with you, got to expect those scores to maybe double. You think somewhere around 10, 11-under, which is what is normal around this track anyway.

I can get there. I'm only 2-over. That takes couple of solid rounds. Maybe 6-under par. So it's not going to be easy but if I can finally get those putts from 4 to about 15 feet that are normally a strength of mine, to fall instead of lip out, then we've got a good opportunity.

Q. Final question, you talked a lot after the win at Hyundai, you talked about the expectations. How do you deal with it coming off last year and the unbelievable start to 2016?
JORDAN SPIETH: Compared to Hyundai? Poorly. I set them too high. Expected that kind of ball-striking and putting to continue. That was a 30-under week.

That was a once maybe in an entire PGA TOUR career week. I just wanted to believe it was going to happen all the time and I kind of got humbled and, you know, obviously couple poor first rounds in L.A. and then here.

Fortunately was able to bring this one back to play the weekend. I'll start getting into a rhythm that will carry into the stretch of the Masters.

Q. Jordan, better ball-striking in the 2nd Round. Much better chipping as well.
JORDAN SPIETH: Yeah. Better chipping on a few holes. Couple chip-ins and obviously the bunker shot at the last but still something that really needs to improve. Simple shots. I'm just not executing.

But I certainly made up for it with a couple of chip-ins. So, yeah, just much more solid today. I feel -- still thought it was a slightly better than average round but I mean still felt pretty average for what I wanted to do.

Still hit some pretty wayward shots with my long clubs and if I can start to tighten the that gap and get the mid range putts, we've got a chance to win the tournament.

Q. Tell me about the belly blade chip-in at the 5th.
JORDAN SPIETH: Here and there when you're on the practice green after you chip and you go to retrieve the balls you pretend like you're kind of bellying it to hit a put with your wedge.

I never tried that in a tournament before. That's the first one I ever hit bellying a wedge in a tournament. It happened to go in. Maybe I've been missing out on something.

Q. Must have felt good on the range.
JORDAN SPIETH: I felt fine on the range because I'm sitting there thinking let's get this 2-under through 2 somehow, eagle, par, birdie, birdie, and I hit -- I was hitting everything great. I got to my driver and they were tugged left of where I wanted them to be on the range.

I couldn't really figure out how to set the club to get it to go where I wanted. Sure enough I get on the tee and I do the same thing, tug it over and unplayable and a 6. Actually did pretty well to make 6, too.

I'm walking off that green going oh, boy, we can either somehow flip this one around today or that's going to be kind -- I don't want that to be the key and me not being able to be here for the weekend. I thought it was really strong what we did after that.

Through the first 20 holes to be at 6-over and then to actually I feel like based on where my game is at and how it started to improve throughout the round, that we're actually still in this tournament and I thought that it was huge.

We were 6-over there through two of the easiest holes on the golf course and we finished at 2-over. So, only positives going forward.

Q. Is there any point where you shift from trying to make the cut to still thinking about winning the tournament?
JORDAN SPIETH: Today it was all about the cut. I looked at the board and -- at the turn I thought you know what, Michael, let's get to even for the tournament. Let's shoot 3-under on the back. We can do that, we'll have plenty of looks. If we're at even we're only five back on a tough golf course that I enjoy playing, I think is a good golf course for me.

Fell a little short of that goal on the back. Had my opportunities but, you know, 11 really kind of shot me in the foot a little and then not birdieing 12, 13, 14.

But at that point I still thought the cut was going to be 3-over and that's what I was at. My focus was still on the cut line and all of a sudden I'm over the green on 15 kind of sitting down in the bluegrass rough just trying to hope to chip that one to tap-in range and get off the tee.

I was walking across the green and said, "All right, Michael, let's get one up and down and hit a good tee shot the next hole we're in the clear for the cut."

Then all in all, we get finished and we're back in the tournament. Really wanted that one on 18, though.

Q. How much of today was about finding something technique-wise and how much was it just a fight?
JORDAN SPIETH: It's been okay. It's just -- I'm not -- it's the basics that have been off. My feet and lower body have shifted over to the right.

When it's windy I get into this. My lower body shifts to the right and my shoulder stay open. The club just gets up. From there there's nowhere to play. Starts left, goes left or starts right, goes right.

My 6-iron on No. 3 was a big shot. I stayed very, very committed to my line, very focused on a very specific targeting and a ball flight. I saw it before I hit. I lined up the correct way and put a good swing on it and I was rewarded.

With all that being said, I needed all that to happen to really get that confidence back in my iron game. I hit some strong iron shots today, a few that I thought were better than they ended up.

But, yeah, I mean it's not -- wasn't really searching for technique. My coach texted me last night, forget about it, just hit one ball flight that you can trust. I kind of went away from that. I still stuck with trying to work with whatever was needed. But I started to lineup a little better.

Q. The club on 3.
JORDAN SPIETH: 6-iron. 3-iron off the tee and 6-iron.

Q. Jordan, there was some of the social media stuff last night, just a product of frustration after a tough day yesterday for you?
JORDAN SPIETH: You know, I don't really like -- I don't look at notifications anymore because there's always positive and negative on there no matter what you're doing.

But when it's something that pops up on the feed, I was a little upset at the PGA TOUR's -- it was a good article but it was tweeted the wrong way, the wrong quote was used and made it seem like I was okay with getting hurt and withdraw.

I was frustrated at that. So, I just -- yeah, it wasn't -- I feel like us and the PGA TOUR, the players and the Tour are supposed to work for each other and kind of make each other look good.

I felt like that was uncalled for when I really composed myself well after the round and I just tweeted, "Really, is that the quote we're going to take out of it considering all my quotes were published" and I got a direct message saying, "We're really sorry. We'll take it down. Trying to see the humor in it but other people weren't."

Then I just took mine away. I don't ever really do that. It was a bit frustrating because it was on my feed and I felt like I was over it and trying to rebound and that made it kind of look bad.

Q. Jordan, people say dumb stuff about you all the time. How do you know when to stand up for yourself publicly, like the Instagram kid?
JORDAN SPIETH: I don't know. You'll probably never see me do that again because obviously it was seen and known and -- just really frustrating. It's frustrating when -- there's really not a point.

I should never respond to any of that, just let it go and by the time the next tournament rolls around no one even remembers it anyways.

There's going to be plenty of people to have their own opinion and everyone has their own opinion. There's going to be plenty of people that don't like the way I play the game or handle things. I got to be confident in what I'm doing and know that many more do appreciate it.

So, yeah, I was just -- I was a bit bored yesterday afternoon and I was just looking at my feed and after a tough round not good things are popping up so you can imagine if someone was talking, you know, to you like that, be a bit frustrating.

So, anyway I got over it quickly.

Q. You talk about the missed opportunity at 11. What if you don't make that putt, what does it do for the rest of your 9?
JORDAN SPIETH: I was very nervous on that putt given that it was very important. Out here you get left edge putts are very scary because if you commit to your line it can do anything, especially in the afternoons. They're not rolling -- you have to hit them harder than you want to and just not -- they're not rolling as true as we're used to and so I've hit a couple putts on those left edges where they've actually just turned left because they just bounce left and others that went in.

And at that point in the round, you know, I go off the cut line again. It was a big putt and I just needed to have full trust in it and it went in the middle and it was -- I think we still would have rebounded and been okay.

We already kind of taken some hits the last -- you know, the first 27 holes so we still would have been all right but that was a big putt for me.

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