Browns HC Freddie Kitchens (10.27.19)
FK: Alright tough night guys, everything we said we couldn’t do and win the game, we did. So, and it all happened in the first quarter. I was proud of the way they kept fighting. Somewhat got back into the game there at the end, but just couldn’t get back fully into it. Can’t turn the ball over and can’t commit penalties. That’s where the game comes in. We ran the ball well, we did exactly what we wanted to do in the run game. That was the game plan, we did it. We held them, we stopped them. I thought our defense played well enough to win. Offensively, we just can’t turn the ball over. And that was the game.
Q: Freddie, was it especially disappointing that you guys had the bye week to clean up a lot of this stuff and …?
FK: No, it’s disappointing anytime it happens. Because you know going in that, we can’t continue to jump offsides, we can’t continue to do the things that get you beat. It’s very evident, that that’s what is getting us beat. It’s turnovers and penalties. That’s it, turnovers and penalties.
Q: What happened on the shovel pass?
FK: It was an interception. We were supposed to block the end, we didn’t block the end. So, I don’t know. I really don’t know. I mean, I know, we were supposed to block the end and we didn’t block the end. So it ends up being an interception.
Q: Nick Chubb is usually so sure handed and doesn’t fumble. How out of character is that?
FK: It’s very out of character. I think it means more to him than anything. You know, Nick had a good night. He holds onto the ball, he knows that. I’m not killing Nick Chubb about it, because Nick Chubb is going to be there in the end.
Q: The fact that you guys closed it to 17-10 after all that adversity, what did that show at that point?
FK: Like I said, those guys weathered the storm. You know, I think there were three possessions in a row, we had three turnovers in the first quarter. So, we weathered the storm. So, even that being said, you know we had enough resiliency to kind of weather the storm and get back into the game. And we did that, we just weren’t able to finish it. And finish the deal.
Q: What did you see or think you saw at the second challenge there? The offensive pass interference…
FK: The offensive pass interference?
Q: The second challenge…
FK: Well, I thought you had to throw it there, it was such a big play in the game. You’ve got a very big 1 yard, is the way the rule is read. You know, very lenient with the 1-yard rule. From the ball, not from their alignment. So, just put it on them, and see if it was a yard or not. You know, I thought that was the best opportunity. It was big play in the game, a big conversion. So, if it had been a yard, it would have been good. It was a little more than a yard, we weren’t good.
Q: How tough was it when you had 17-10 and it was third-and-10 and they are backed up to 16 and hit a big screen. Was that something that’s popping up on your…
FK: Yeah, it does. That’s bad. It’s not good. We got to get of the field there. And I think everyone on defense would say that.
Q: Freddie, you talked about the resiliency to bring it back closer, does that make it even more maddening the way you started the game? The mistakes…
FK: You know, we had a lot of confidence going into this game and we got a lot of confidence coming out of this game. Because we understand why we lost the game. We lost the game because we turned the ball over and penalties. We need to stop committing penalties. Alright? We need to focus and concentrate on enough on staying on sides, so we don’t end up in first-and-20. Alright? That’s how you win games. And then, take care of the football.
Q: In terms of the false starts, normally the rule of thumb is, the receivers should never be false starting. But you had a couple of those, so what’s going on there?
FK: I don’t coach penalties; I’m not answering questions about penalties. I’ve never once, in 20 years of coaching, coach somebody to take a penalty. Except in a situation, where it would help you clock-wise, clock management-wise. So, I don’t know, I don’t know.
Q: Did you take that deliberate false start at the end of the game and what was your thinking on that play?
FK: I didn’t want to use the timeout and I wanted to go for it. We had half of our guys running off, half of our guys running on and I wasn’t giving up right then by punting the ball to them. The only chance that we had was to convert for a [first] down and then we didn’t. The defense’s job is to go out there and stop them and they did, so it gave us a chance. I was still trying to win the game.
Q: The Patriots didn’t make many mistakes that game, so what does that say about the Patriots?
FK: They’ve got a lot of banners up there for winning the same way. I told you going in – well, I told our guys how they win is they don’t beat themselves. We came in and beat ourselves.
Q: I know you have to watch the film –
FK: It’s not shocking, that’s how people usually win. They don’t turn the ball over and they don’t – the penalties were 13 to three. We had 13, they had three, so you can’t have that big of a discrepancy in penalties and they had one turnover [blocked field goal] and we had three, so they’re plus-two. They’re 91-2 when they win the turnover battle, or 92-2 now. So, there’s 91 other teams that have done the same thing. We expect more out of ourselves; we’re just not getting that right now and that needs to change. Everybody in the locker room understands what needs to change. Everybody’s got to make a commitment to changing and getting that done. That’s what needs to work.
Q: How would you assess the pass game today?
FK: I thought we were efficient when we blocked the people we were supposed to block and ran the right route and caught the ball, we were efficient.
Q: With your record now at 2-5, how do you make sure –
FK: I’m worried about winning one game and that’s it. I want to win one game, next week. That’s what I want to do. You’ve got to win one before you talk about anything else.
Q: How do you make sure everybody sticks together to get that accomplished?
FK: I think 2-5, I don’t know what – everything’s in front of us. I don’t know what else to say about that. Everything’s in front of us. So win the games that we’re supposed to win and we’ll be fine. It starts in Denver, that’s who we play next, so let’s have a good practice Wednesday and see where we’re at, at the end of the week. We had a good week of practice this week but it got to Sunday and we didn’t do the things that we knew we had to do to win the game. It’s as simple as that. Just do that, win one game and see what happens. There’s nine games left.
Q: This is two straight weeks where you guys have had a good week of practice and another game where you guys fought back – even though you didn’t come away with a win, do you feel like you’re getting closer to that point?
FK: Well, I mean it doesn’t matter how close you get to it if you commit turnovers and have 13 penalties and I don’t know how many of those were false starts. It doesn’t matter. You can get close all you want and you’re going to end up short every time. Every time. There’s not even a doubt.
Q: How do you think the changes on the offensive line worked for you?
FK: I mean, I thought they competed. We gave up some pressure late. I thought they competed. Got over-powered on a couple, got [a penalty] called on a TE [tight end] on a big play in the game on third down, they got caught with a TE. So probably hit-and-miss. Run game, they blocked well.
Q: You don’t see offensive linemen rotate a lot. What was the thinking on the rotation at right guard?
FK: Just to get the other guy some – again, we’ve got nine games left so we need to make sure we’ve got some depth there moving forward. So that was it. We’ve got confidence in our guys, we’ve got confidence in number six and number seven [backup offensive linemen] coming off the bench so we want to make sure they get some playing time, that was all. It’s nothing they did, it’s what we did, okay? Turnovers and penalties.