DT Larry Ogunjobi (12.28.20)

DT Larry Ogunjobi:

On if he is fueled by the team controlling its own fate this Sunday:

“I think that the guys have worked extremely hard to get to this point, and everything we want is still right in front of us so we know what we have to do this week and how we have to prepare and just attack the week and then find a way to win on Sunday. We are fired up. Yesterday was very disappointing, but at the same time, we can’t cry over spilled milk. What is done is done. If we spend this week in preparation thinking about what could have been last week, we are not going to put ourselves in position to win. We have to put all of our focus this week on the Steelers and move forward.”

On if the Browns have the ability to bounce back this week, particularly after the team has done so after its previous losses this season:

“I do not even like getting into stuff like that. I just like to stay focused. Whenever we do lose, we find a way to win. I feel like that is just a testament to guys, their resiliency and just being able to just focus on what we have to do. What is done is done. You have to focus on what is going on right now, and that is the Steelers.”

On Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger:

“He is Big Ben. Everybody knows him. Hard to take down. Great quarterback in the pocket. We played against him a number of times now. He is good at what he does. He has been there forever it feels like and since I have really known about the Steelers. It is always a great challenge, and we look forward to it.”

On if he seen any highlights from the Steelers’ comeback win yesterday:

“Yeah, once again, just resiliency. They are a tough football team. That is just how they have been. They have always been that way. Just have to find a way to win.”

On how much different the Browns defense is compared to Week 6 and takeaways from the previous matchup:

“I feel like the drive is different. I feel like we are in a different position right now. Week 6 is Week 6. We did some things well, but obviously, we did not get the win. Not well enough. At the same time, I feel like the offense is just moving way better. I feel like the defense we are clicking a lot better. I feel like we are just a better team overall now than we were in Week 6. We just have to play like that. It is all about execution on Sunday. I feel like that is biggest thing. The team that executes the best and plays the best on Sunday is going to win.”

On if the Browns past struggles beating the Steelers adds extra motivation this week:

“For me personally, the biggest motivating factor is just the fact that we have an opportunity to do something that has not been done in a really long time. I feel like that is just the most important thing.”

On challenges preparing for the Steelers with uncertainty on if Pittsburgh may play some backups:

“At the end of the day, we just have to prepare regardless. We know what we have to do. Like you said, we win and we are in. That is just the mindset of whatever it takes to win, whatever we have to do to win. I feel like that is just the mentality we have to have. We have a unique and special opportunity to do something that has not been done in a very long time and once again. We can’t talk about last week and what happened. Yesterday was last game. It is what it is. Only thing we can do right now is focus on the Steelers and what we have to do to find a way to win. That is the most important thing.”

On his excitement level for a potential playoff berth, given the history:

“I am a guy that is really even-keeled so I usually kind of just stay chilled. When you win, it is not over yet. I feel like a lot of greats have always had the mentality that just because you get the W does not mean that it is finished. It does not stop there. For us, I feel like that is the change that we have had this season where we do not just win a game and then it all like everybody is excited off of one win. It is winning consistently, being good and finding yourself in this position for years to come as far as being able to go to the playoffs. For me, the biggest thing is just staying focused on the task at hand and focusing on what we have to do this week in preparation from film study to the practice field to just preparing each and every way to find a way to win. That is it. That is the biggest thing. The most important this is to just win. I feel like once you take care of that, then we can start the hoorays and that stuff will come about getting in, but we have to handle business on Sunday.”

On the additional element to the game that could occur if Steelers QB Mason Rudolph plays, given the situation involving Rudolph and DE Myles Garrett last season: 

“The only element right now as far as the game is concerned is we win and we are in. That is it. We are trying to keep it strictly about winning. Whatever is done is done. I understand the emotions and all of that kind of stuff, but I feel like Myles’ maturity level and the team’s maturity level as a whole is that we understand that this is bigger than one incident and bigger than one situation. Right now, it is about doing something that has not been done in a very long time, and it is about playing for each and every one of us, our brothers, and finding a way to win. That is the most important thing. That is my take on it.”

On how challenging this season has been mentally and if it would be human nature to be mentally worn down by everything players have had to deal with throughout the year: 

“Yeah, I feel like that is fair to say. Sometimes I feel a lot of times when you have the helmet on and people are on the outside looking in, they kind of forget that we are human. We deal with the same struggles as far whether it is the virus and things that are going on in the world. We have families and we have loved ones who are going through the same thing. It is mentally draining not being able to spend Christmas with your family and stuff like that. It is different. Once again, it is a shared responsibility. We all have to make sacrifices for the greater good, and I feel like a lot of guys have bought into that. Is it perfect? No, but it is not ever perfect. We learn from certain examples and certain situations. We just really have to once again find a way to come together, pull together and do whatever it needs to take to get the job done. I feel like guys are doing that and guys are continuing to do that.”

On lessons were learned last week with players being placed on reserve/COVID-19 as close contacts ahead of Sunday’s game: 

“Just being serious. It can happen just like that. The day before a game, you lose a good amount of players and it is like, ‘Whoa.’ At the end of day, it is all around the league and it is just one of the things that now that it is happening and you understand how serious this thing can be and how quickly it can change the tide. Once again, we have to continue to be proactive. You have to continue check your teammates, check yourself, look yourself in the mirror and see what you are doing to be more preventative and more mindful of the situation. You see somebody without something on or you see yourself slipping, just make sure you know that now we have felt it firsthand how it can affect what we are trying to do. It is just something that can’t be taken lightly.”

On missing LB B.J. Goodson on Sunday: 

“It is definitely a presence. B.J. is our signal caller. He kind of gets that fire going and calls the plays out for us. He was definitely missed yesterday. I got to talk to him today. It was just kind of one of the things where we always have that next man up mentality and the guys just have to rally and find a way to get it done. It sucks when you are missing one of your key pieces, but he would not want us to fall off just because he is gone. We can’t do that.”

On how Goodson is feeling: 

“He is feeling better. It sucks. It is just kind of one of those things where it is just a rough situation. I know where his heart is at, I know where his mind is at and I know that he wants to do everything in his power to help us win games. It is just one of the things that just kind of happens. We just have to once again just roll with it. We love him. We are just going to keep going.”

On what he was doing when he was 13 years old when the Browns last entered Week 17 with a chance to go to the playoffs: 

“I am going to tell you right now, I was not watching football. At 13, I did not know I would be playing football. I was on the games playing Xbox and eating chicken wings – I was a big boy. I do not think I was doing anything as far as football is concerned. Once again, it is an amazing experience, an amazing opportunity to be able to do something special. I know that we have the guys in this organization to do it. That is pretty much it. We know our goals. Yesterday sucked. It left a bad taste in everybody’s mouth, but once again, we can’t dwell on the past and we can’t cry over spilled milk. We have to be able to stay focused on the task at hand and understand that if we win, we are in.”

 

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