DC Joe Woods (11.12.20)

Defensive coordinator Joe Woods:

On the challenge Houston presents to the secondary:

“It is really like the same thing every week. It is just the nature of playing in the NFL is week to week, it is always about matchups. When you look at them from the quarterback position to the wide receiver position, they really have some matchups that creates some problems. They are able to stretch the field vertically. They are good underneath. (Texans WR Randall) Cobb run after the catch. We are going to have to do a good job in coverage really triggering on the ball and doing a good job when we are matched up and staying on top.”

On the Browns DL line and if having fresh legs this Sunday will help:

“Yeah, I definitely think that the bye week was good. It seems like it has been a long time. Just for the guys to be able to take a breath and look at everything and get rested up, I feel the guys they came out so far in practice really well. The energy has been good. As far as the D line in particular, I think it is a group effort. It is really not on one position group. In the back end, you have to do a good job in covering to buy time for the D line, and then if we are running pressers and things of that nature, it is about execution. I just think collectively as a defense that will help us to be able to pressure the quarterback a little bit more.”

On Texans QB Deshaun Watson:

“He is very dangerous. He is very dangerous. I have not slept very much this week. When you look at him, they are doing a nice job in their scheme. You can just tell just in terms of their offense and how they put it together with the run and pass game. I think they are really putting them in the position to take advantage of his talents. I was answering the question earlier, when you do everything right, then you have to chase him down, which creates another problem. He is playing at a high level this year, and he is really doing a good job running their offense.”

On talking points for the Browns defense about facing Watson:

“There are some things that we want to do defensively to try to put ourselves in better positions, but you can see how they spread the field to give him opportunities. You can see how when they are throwing the ball deep. They are doing a good in protection with their offensive line. It is going to be us mixing our coverage, trying to get him to move a little bit out of the pocket and trying to get some pressure in his face, but we just can’t let him sit back there and really just get comfortable and try to pick us a part, based on how they play us.”

On if any significant items to correct really stood out from the self-evaluation during the bye week:

“No, there are always things that stick out but I think the first thing for us defensively, we always look at ourselves as coaches. Like for me, looking at the calls, how can I call it better? What areas do I need to be more aggressive? What areas do I need to play more coverage? Defensively, the first thing we did as a staff is how we can we get better. We will be able to tweak the menu, change things, make it similar and be more aggressive at times. Those are things we saw. From a player standpoint, it is always week to week comes down to execution. Sometimes trying to make a play puts you in the position where you can’t make a play. We always talk about those guys that just doing your job is all that is required, and we saw a little bit of stuff there. Overall, I do not think it is anything like, ‘Oh my God.’ It is just really tightening up the details of our coverage package and what we are doing and me just calling it a little bit better.”

On if the Browns defense will make adjustments to the lineup:

“That is something that it is like we are tweaking it every week, just based on what is going on. We feel really comfortable. We are playing multiple people at multiple positions. We will continue to evaluate that each week.”

On how to contain Texans WR Will Fuller V:

“We are still working on it (laughter). It is really just a combination of coverages. Sometimes pressure getting the ball out of the quarterback’s hands faster, and sometimes it is rolling coverages away. It is like what I always tell the guys, you do something to try to take somebody away, and you weaken yourself somewhere else. It is like pick your poison. We have to be able to do multiple things from a coverage-package standpoint, the looks we give them and from a pressure standpoint.”


On if it is a weekly challenge of determining when and how to bring pressure and how that is impacted by the opponent: 

“It is a little bit of both because we are evaluating them based on what we see on tape, and they are evaluating us, as well. I have to look back and say, ‘Man, what am I calling?’ When you look at it overall, you mentioned (DE) Myles (Garrett) and the pressure he has been able to create, I think as a whole defensive, it is just how the whole defense functions. There are things that we do in terms of moving Myles around to create one on ones. There are times we try to bring pressure away from him. We are trying to do things to create opportunities for other guys to get pressure, but it is just not all on the D line and it is just not on the coverage. It is me changing the play calls, as well.”

On if he has a good grasp on the Browns defense’s players and what they do best or if he is still learning more about some players: 

“Yeah, I think that is a weekly thing. You asked, what are we doing? Is it a week-to-week gameplan? How much pressure? Things of that nature. You look at the matchups. You always look at the matchups. ‘OK, who are the guys we have to take care of? Who are the guys we isolate one on one? What type of coverage packages can we run? What type of pressures can we run?’ It is evaluation of our players and what they are capable of doing but also what are the opponents doing to try to attack us.”

On working LB Jacob Phillips back from his injury: 

“We are evaluating him daily. Just giving him reps and how much he can take. So far this week, he has looked good. We have not seen anything physically that is bothering him. I think the big thing Jacob brings to the table is he is very competitive. It is like when the lights come on, his hair is on fire and he is running to the ball. He may not execute everything properly all the time, but the thing you know you are going to get is you are going to get a guy that plays hard. I think he will get better with more reps.”

On if he got a better sense for how important Garrett is to the Browns defense after missing significant time against the Raiders: 

“He is definitely important because you know people have to account for him. It changes protections, it changes formations and it changes routes when he is in there so you definitely feel it when he is out of the game. You do not have time to think about it, but things change slightly.”

On Texans Head Coach Romeo Crennel saying Garrett and Watt will be juiced up to play against each other, Texans DE J.J. Watt and if he has shown film of Watt to DL players in the past: 

“I am sure along the way that is something that most D line coaches I have been around – (defensive line) Coach (Chris) Kiffin, (Broncos defensive coach) Bill Kollar – they always make tape of who they feel are the best pass rushers that. I know Kollar was down there in Houston when I was in Denver. He is a guy that a lot of people show because of his versatility inside, his power and his quickness. He has been able to dominate. That is why he has been Defensive Player of the Year in this league. In terms of Myles, is he going to get juiced up? I do not know. It just depends on how players look at it, but I am sure he wants to play well in this game.”

On what he learned about S Ronnie Harrison Jr. in the first half of the season:    

“He is a baller. He is another guy who he is going to show and he is going to play with his hair on fire. It is just getting Ronnie comfortable with our system, and he is still getting comfortable with some aspects of the system. You just really see he has a natural feel. I think the last game you guys saw his ability with all the different movements and misdirections just to fit his gap. He shows up on gameday. He is 100 miles an hour. He is a total gamer.”

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