C JC Tretter (10.28.20)

C JC Tretter:

On how was he able to stay in the game after sustaining a knee injury on the first offensive drive against the Bengals:

“It did not feel good. Kind of got rolled up, foot got stuck in the ground and twisted around. It did not feel great at the time. Got off the field, got checked out in the tent and then I tested it and wanted to make sure I was still strong enough to play and then went back out there.”

On if he will be ready to play Sunday:

“Should be. We are going to do what we have always done, just take care of it, get a plan in place and just follow the plan.”

On if it was extra worry because it was the knee he had a procedure on during training camp:

“I would not say it was extra worry. We did our MRIs and did feel good about the results. Just keep moving forward.”

On if getting his foot caught was an example to what he referred to when discussing a desire to change turf fields to grass in all NFL stadiums:

“I would have to look. The tough thing is what happened in the play, the cameras already headed down field to follow the throw. We look at all that stuff as the union. We have people go back and watch the plays and watch how the field interacts, how much of it is contact and how much of it is the turf. I would have to look at it and have our experts look at it, but I am not even sure we have a clear visual of what exactly happened in order to take a look at that particular injury.”

On if he could not tell if the turf played a part in the situation from feel:

“It felt like my foot was stuck in the ground, but I do not know if maybe I was being stepped on. Everything happens really fast.”

On WR Odell Beckham Jr. being injured on the same play and if the field surface may have contributed to it:
“Again, I defer back to our experts. They do that for every injury. That is what we do. We have people investigate it and judge it, and we get our results on what we think happened and how much of it is related to the field surface.”

On the Raiders defense:

“They have a really good defensive line coach. They are explosive off the ball, looking for knockback and do a lot of movement. You have to be kind of all be on the same page across the offensive line, making sure we know where we are going and how we are going to get there, both off run and pass. That is one thing with teams that move so much, usually you expect it on third downs with twist, but these guys will move, twist and pirate right in the run game so you have to be aware of that at all times and make sure both the back side and the front side of the run are ready for it and have the call in place to pick it all up.”

On if it feels like his life managing an injury to play is becoming common:

“The injury rate is 100 percent in this business. I think everybody gets a little banged up. Everybody has something going on. There is stuff that everybody knows about. We have people fighting through rib injuries and different injuries. It is part of the business. Especially this part of the year, it is Week 8, and I am sure everybody has something they are dealing with that is lingering, and you hope to get through this week, get to the bye, get some time off your feet and get your body back right. That is what this business is about – people playing hurt and people playing injured.”

On confidence in the Browns offense’s ability to adjust following the loss of Beckham:

“I think the guys that need to step up will step up. I think we saw that last week. It is tough to replace a guy like Odell – just that talent, that ability and that respect that the defense gives him and what that does to our gameplan. I think that is tough to recreate, but I know the guys and how much preparation they put in and how much work they have put in this offseason, this training camp and the weeks in practice that they will be ready to step up and make plays for us.”

On replacing the ‘juice’ that Beckham provides off of the field:

“We still have a lot of guys that are leading this team. We have (G) Joel (Bitonio), we have (QB) Baker (Mayfield) and we have (WR) Jarvis (Landry). We have guys who will get the team going, especially the offense. Again, it is never easy to replace a guy both in the leadership sense in Odell, as well as on the field with Odell, but other guys will have to step up and do more, both on the field and in the leadership capacity.”

On if he thinks that Beckham is sometimes misunderstood about what Beckham means to a team and teammates:

“Yeah, I think that has been pretty clear for a while now. I think what people look at him from the outside versus inside the locker room are very different. I think he has always been a very good teammate. It is what we were told before he even got here when you ask guys who played with him in the past. We were told that he is a great teammate and a great guy in the locker room to have. That has been clear. After we got to know each other and other guys in the locker room got to know him, he is all about the team. It is tough to see one of your brothers go down.”

On if opposing defenses have made more of a concerted effort to stop the run in the last three games: 

“You think back to those games we had, and I believe the Colts was three weeks ago – really good defense, a really good run stopping defense and do a lot of movement. Then you go to Pittsburgh, we fall behind in the game script and not really a lot of opportunities to run when you fall behind. Then last week, I think we were just a few blocks away on a couple plays where it could have been more, but we just did not finish the right way. There are things to improve. I think we are really close to getting back on. (RB) Nick (Chubb) is a great runner, but (RB) Kareem (Hunt) does a heck of a job and (RB) D’Ernest (Johnson), as well. I think that there is still more meat on the bone that we have to get in the future and hope we can bounce back.”

On if defenses will pay even more attention to the run game now without Beckham: 

“Maybe. We will see.”

On if there is more of a sense of normalcy to the season now that the team has reached Week 8: 

“I would not say ‘normalcy.’ I do not think you want normalcy. I think with everything going on when I hear normalcy, I feel like people then fall into a sense of relaxation, a sense of we have everything under control, we are good to go, we no longer have to think about this and we can just go through the motions. I do not think you want that. I do not think guys are looking at it that way. We have even recently enhanced the protocols to make them stronger and make sure we are doing everything to get through a season. I do not think anybody is looking at it as a normal season still. There are still changes going on. There are still things we have to focus on. Again, like we have always said, we expected to be able to start, and it is going to take a constant, concerted effort to finish. We are a little over halfway there now with training camp included. There is still a lot of work to be done. I do not think we want normalcy. I think we want everybody to stay with coronavirus top of mind and all the important things you have to do in order to finish the season.”

On if injuries this season have been affected by the changes to the offseason and training camp: 

“There is a little lag time on that data so that will continue to be looked at. It is always going to be tough with a one-year sample size with outliers and things like that, but I know we are currently going through all that information and that data. We have done it for the information we have. Again, there is a lag time. That probably will not be all figured out in totality of the season until a month or so after the season. That is something we are very interested in – all of it, not just soft tissue but also heat-related illness for training camp, concussions and all that stuff that we track and see if we are improving on. That is all stuff we will have to look at and get a clear answer, most likely at the end of the season when we have the full data set with as much information as possible.”


On if he has to speak with other teams as NFLPA President about the COVID-19 protocols and violations: 

“We stay in contact with our reps. Each team has reps for the union. We make sure we have our union calls where we talk about the importance of staying on our teammates and make sure we all understand it. I think that is understood. There are going to be mistakes made. We hope to correct those and make sure that the protocols, when enforced properly, keep this season going. It really takes everybody. It takes all of us. Not just players, it takes a staff and takes everybody who walks into one of these facilities doing the right thing at all times, both at the facility and away from the facility, in order to finish the season.”

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