DL coach Chris Kiffin (9.25.20)

Defensive line coach Chris Kiffin:

On DE Myles Garrett’s strip-sack and if he is challenging Garrett to make more game-changing plays on a regular basis: 

“I do not know if I am really challenging him to make those type of plays. We just want to put him in position to use his athleticism to make it hard and take advantage of our matchups. That is what he did. He put him over a guard, and as you guys saw on the play, he has an unbelievable ability to create and counter an offense lineman’s momentum. Obviously, we had it paired in a game with (DE) Porter (Gustin) there so just let him win one on one outside there, Porter wrapped and then he got his hand on the ball right at the right time, and it was perfect.”


On DE Porter Gustin and the spark Gustin has provided on defense:

“Porter is the guy that every coach wants in the room. He wants one of those guys that you know is going to get the job done, he is going to do everything that you ask him and he is going to do it with the technique that you coach and make you look really good as a coach. He just works his tail off. He is in here on an off day for hours and hours getting extra flexibility and mobility work, studying tape and doing everything he can. I saw how he said this offseason gave him a chance to catch everybody else. That is great that his mindset thinks that way. I was telling somebody the other day that he was picking up breakfast, and he got some pre-made eggs. I said, ‘Why don’t you get fresh eggs?’ He said, ‘That is not time efficient, Coach. Can’t wait for those.’ That is his mindset. Love that guy.”

On how the depth on the Browns DL line is being tested:

“It is tough. I think that happens everywhere in this league with the roster size. You are just a couple injuries away from being short-handed, especially with COVID this year and the timing and you can bring guys in and they have to get tested. All that stuff goes into it, but we have some guys here that we are looking at and seeing if they are ready to be quality backups for us. As always, it is a numbers game and we are going to try to survive with a seven-man rotation if we have to. If we need eight guys, we will find out who that eighth guy is. It presents its problems for every team when you have a couple of injuries at a position.”

On what he has seen from Gustin in the weight room and outside of practice:

“Like I mentioned, I saw him on our off day doing all kinds of mobility and flexible work. It looked like he was doing a yoga class on his own. It was pretty impressive. I have not really seen him lifting weights or whatnot. Those type of guys that work their tail off in pre-practice, are out there early hitting the sled, working on their footwork or doing whatever are usually the guys are putting in the extra work in the weight room, too. That is just his mindset. He wants to be efficient with his time. He wants to work hard. He knows he has a chip on his shoulder to beat out some guys that are, some say, more talented in this league or whatnot.”

On the potential for DE Joe Jackson:

“Joe is a guy they brought in, and right away, you can see that Joe had some very good attributes in his body. He has some violent hands rushing the passer and he has a good get off. He was a guy who was just a draft pick last year, and Dallas did not have room for him with the guys they signed. We brought him into the building, and he was playing for us on Thursday night, rushing the passer on third down with a big fumble recovery. We just have to continue to push him. He is still young as can be obviously. My job is to get him coached up and see what we can get from Joe. He is a guy who just wants to go to work and get better at his craft. I like what I see in Joe so far.”

On what Jackson’s ability to make a big play in his first play shows:

“Yeah, he was in the right place at the right time, that is for sure. Myles obviously made the play and then he got the fumble recovery, which was awesome, too. That was good.”

On DT Larry Ogunjobi’s start to the season:

“Very good. He surprises you every now and then, flashing with his athleticism, get-off, twitch and strength. For Larry, it is just continuing to work with him to where he is a three-down starter. He has been great in the run game.  He made obviously the huge fumble two weeks ago, but he is just a guy that is going to make plays. It seems like every time we call a stunt, he makes the guy miss and he is in the backfield with the opportunity to TFL. I think he missed one last week, but Larry is going to be just fine. He is going to continue to make plays for us on first and second down. As he continues to progress, hopefully, we can get more third-down reps.

On Ogunjobi’s personality: 

“Larry is a quiet guy, but Larry has a huge heart. He is a very good person. He is a great teammate. He is somebody that he is not necessarily going to be a leader by shouting and yelling at guys to do the right thing, but he may pull somebody aside and say, ‘Hey we need to get going here.’ He is progressing in that area, too. He is a quiet guy that likes to work, but a really good kid.”


On if forced fumbles are a point of emphasis with Garrett, particularly given some NFL players have a knack for creating them:

“Yes, I think all D line coaches talk about that in different areas. To me, I coach all the guys the same in that area as far as getting the ball out when you get to the quarterback. Like you said, some guys have a knack for it. Some elite rushers when they are running by just swat at the hand as it is up in motion. We have a technique called run, run, reach – as you are reaching that arm, straight arm, going for the ball and all that, which is what you saw him do to (Bengals QB) Joe Burrow the other night. Just reached that right hand out and slapped the ball right out of his hand. Now obviously, guys with good length, 34-inch arms, it makes it easier as they are coming around the edge and can reach and get the ball, but we are always going to coach that the No. 1 thing is us creating takeaways to give us the best chance of winning games. The defensive line is going to be coached that way, and then obviously Myles, challenge him to continue to get the ball out when he does get to the quarterback.”

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