Defensive coordinator Joe Woods (12.9.21)

On if the Week 12 matchup against the Ravens was how the team envisioned the big dime package and LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah to perform:

“Yes. I think that is one of the strengths of our defense. I just think we can run at all three levels of our defense in terms of rushing the passer, covering and things of the nature. I think it showed itself a little in that game. The production was good. I wish we could have made a couple more plays, but that is what I feel like we are capable of doing.”


On if the Browns can anticipate the changes the Ravens may make for Sunday:

“No, (Ravens offensive coordinator) Coach (Greg) Roman to me is a great offensive coordinator. He is very creative. There are a lot of plays – a lot of different pass plays and a lot of different run plays. This game could play out totally different based on what they choose to run.”


On adjustments on defense with LB Anthony Walker Jr. most likely not available this week after being placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list:

“We have good depth at the position with (LB) Malcolm (Smith) and (LB) Elijah Lee, and we are still seeing where (LB) Jacob (Phillips) is so there are some possibilities there, but I just feel comfortable with the guys we will have available.”


On how Phillips has looked in practice this week after being designated to return from injured reserve and if there is a possibility Phillips could play on Sunday:

“We are going to evaluate that the next couple of days. As far as running around, he looks healthy. He looks like he is capable. Just have to keep getting him in practice and getting that contact and see how it turns out.”


On the comfort with Smith starting at LB, given Smith filled in earlier this year when Walker sustained an injury:

“Yeah, I have no problems. Malcolm is a veteran. He has played a long time in this league and in this system for us on and off based on injuries. I am very comfortable regardless of the situation.”


On the Ravens throwing to the running backs more in Week 13 against the Steelers and if the Ravens may do the same this week:

“I do not know. It is probably based on what they were doing just coverage-wise looking at it. Their backs are a big part of it. It just depends on where they want to go with the ball.”


On CBs Denzel Ward and Greg Newsome II as a duo and their future potential together:

“I think we are talented with (CB) Greedy (Williams), as well. (CB) Troy (Hill) had his ups and downs, but when he plays well, he is really effective in terms of being a good cover guy. I feel comfortable with a couple of good combinations out there. For me defensively, it gives you flexibility in terms of creating matchups and where you want to play guys.”


On Newsome’s versatility to play both inside and outside CB:

“That is big. I would prefer it that way with all of the guys. There are certain guys who you like playing inside more than other guys based on their skillset, but we try to train Greg that whole way from the offseason on. Now, he is getting involved and doing a pretty good job for us.”


On the touchdown in Week 12 to Ravens TE Mark Andrews:

“Bust. Unfortunately, there were a lot of good things we did in that game, but there were a few plays we were capable of making and we just did not execute. Those guys are a good team. They are explosive. If you are just off a little bit, that is what can happen to you.”


On his feeling on the different reactions of DEs Jadeveon Clowney and Myles Garrett after the TD to Andrews:

“Nothing really. It was a hard-fought game, a very competitive game. The guys played hard. They gave it their all. We just came up a little bit short. Sometimes that comes off that way, but I do not think anything about that.”


On if the disruptiveness Clowney showed in Week 12 is what the Browns want and needs:



On why Clowney was so productive in Week 12:

“I just think it depends on the type of scheme you play. I think he had more opportunities when you see him come off of the edge. There are a couple things we did that freed him up, but against those guys, he showed his speed and he showed his length when he was chasing the quarterback. He did not catch him all of the time, but you see the pressure he applied. It was good to see.”


On if he can remember a game when three different Ss had interceptions:

“Not off the top of my head, but I was glad to see it. They just came right in a row right towards the end of two minutes and early in the third quarter. Those guys have been doing a good job. They work well together. I think the ability to disguise and run multiple coverages really helped them make those interceptions.”


On how many different players were assigned to guard Andrews during the first Ravens matchup:

“It is just based on call. Based on how we call it, all three of those guys can cover him so that gives you flexibility as a play caller just trying to create the matchups that you want to create based on the call.”


On if the Browns had a CB on Andrews at times:

“Yeah, I do not want to give away all the secrets, but yes.”


On if LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah ever guarded Andrews in the first Ravens matchup:

“Not that game.”


On if he took out S Ronnie Harrison Jr. after Andrews’ long catch:



On the Browns’ substitution issues during the game:

“That is on me. We have to be clean in terms of our operation. They changed their personnel. I tried to change our personnel. It was kind of a little too late, and we ended up having 12 men on the field. That is something I addressed with the whole group, and I will make sure that is cleaner going into this game.”


On if he feels like the Browns defense needs to step up to win the game when the Browns offense struggles:

“No. That is something that I talk to the guys about. You can say look at it offensively what they are doing or we are down guys, we should be able to play at the highest level regardless of the situation. To me, it is not really what is happening around us. It is can we go out and execute the defense the way we want to do it and make the plays we are supposed to make.”


On if the Browns defense is where he wants it to be at this point in the season after having several strong performances in recent weeks:

“The ups and downs that we had during the season, we look at things and try to figure out why they happened. I think guys are really just worrying about doing their job, and I think now they are playing better collectively. From my standpoint as a play caller, trying to organize everything and game plan, our defensive coaching staff, I feel like we have grown, and we are putting together better plans for the defense. Altogether, I think that is kind of the result of what is happening and just guys making plays.”


On how much Owusu-Koramoah’s speed allows him to contain teams:

“It helps a lot. You saw the speed on the field. His ability to make plays in space, there are things we can do, but at the same time, we do not want to do too much. We always try to keep a mix, especially when you are dealing with an athletic quarterback to try to contain.”


On Owusu-Koramoah’s development:
“He is right on track. We have put more on his plate really the last couple of games that he has played. Again, you do not try to do too much because if you do too much and he is thinking then he plays slow. Just being very cautious in terms of what we are asking him to do and different packages we are putting him in. I think he is progressing nicely, and I think you guys saw that in the last game.”


On if there was a time when watching the film of the Ravens game that he thought that Owusu-was what Koramoah ‘was born to do’:

“Anytime he steps on the field. It is just having a guy who can run, you feel good about him making plays in space. You feel good about blitzing him. You feel good about matching him up. He is kind of that hybrid guy who is like linebacker/safety, and we will continue to use him that way as the season goes on.”


On the key to Lamar Jackson not having long runs in the first matchup:
“You give all of the credit to the player. I feel like we are a fast defense, as I said earlier at all three levels. When you have that speed, you can close in space. I think they did a good job of executing the plan and trying to keep them in the pocket. When we did breakthrough on a couple of runs, we were at least able to get him down before he got to break.”


On where Jackson ranks among top QBs in ability to win a game however possible:

“He is just one of those guys. There are a few guys in the league like that, and just because of the dual-threat, he has the ability to throw the ball and you see him make the throws – short, intermediate and deep – but if you cover guys and then you do not contain him, he can beat you with his feet. He is a very dangerous guy to deal with, and you have to play those guys for 60 minutes.”


On how many QBs with those types are there now in the NFL like Jackson:

“Off the top of my head, I could not tell you, but you know all of the obvious ones, but the guys we have played, Lamar, (Chiefs QB) Patrick Mahomes and guys like that. I am sure there are more. Those are two guys who stick out in my mind.”


On Buccaneers QB Tom Brady and Packers QB Aaron Rodgers having that winning ability, in addition to Jackson and Mahomes:

“Yeah, I was just talking about the guys who are mobile and who can beat you with the throws that if you do not keep them in the pocket, they can beat you with their feet. We have played a couple of guys like that but obviously Tom Brady no question.”


On the number of QBs in the NFL who can have tough performances but still find a way to win at the end of the game:

“I am sure there are several guys – guys you all know of.”


On Newsome’s development:

“Getting better. I think he is confident. He has played against some of the better receivers, just based on the teams we have played, and held his. I think that gives him confidence when he sees, ‘Hey, I can make a play against these guys.’ I think he is doing a good job, and you mentioned earlier the versatility of him playing outside and inside is very valuable to us.”


On if there is a specific area Newsome has progressed the most as a rookie:

“To me, being the DB guy, it is coverage. The ability to go up there and play press and off-man coverage, just when you can lock somebody down. There are times where you can see teams really trying to isolate him formation to the boundary and he is one on one, and he has been able to hold up. I think he has progressed just in terms of his technique and ability to play one on one.”


# # #