HC Freddie Kitchens (8.3.19)

Head Coach Freddie Kitchens:

Opening statement:

“Before we get started guys, I wanted to tell you how proud I am of the support that we had today because all these proceeds go to something our organization really believes in – The ‘Get 2 School’ program, and 100 percent from the ticket sales goes to that and this a tremendous start for that narrative.”


On if there was an adrenaline rush for him as the head coach in FirstEnergy Stadium:

“I understand the passion that these fans have, and they demonstrated every opportunity they have to do that. This is no different. This is an opportunity for them to come out, show their support and show their excitement. Yeah, there was adrenaline.”


On main takeaways from today’s practice:

“I thought these guys did a great job of staying in the moment and competing. We were sloppy at times and all that, but let me tell you, this group that we have, they are going to compete. If we will compete every day and every snap, we will have a chance.”


On if DE Myles Garrett is showing the consistency he desires:

“He is. He has been very consistent. You know what? Myles has an high expectation of himself. We have just as high of expectation of him as he does himself. We are going to hold him to that, and he is going to hold himself to that.”


On what Garrett is doing better this year than last year:

“I think he is playing every down.”


On if K Greg Joseph separated himself today in the K competition with no missed kicks:

“We will evaluate that. We are a long way from that. I am not trying to avoid your question. We truly are. What if the next one comes out tomorrow and the other one misses them all and the other one makes them? We are just strictly day by day until we have to decide.”


On if it was nice to see RB Kareem Hunt practice today:

“Yeah, it was. It was nice to see Kareem do that. It is a slow process. We want to be safe with them and careful with getting him back. This was really the first day he had a chance to get back out, and I was pleased. He came out and did some individual stuff and some drill. It was very good.”


On if Hunt has a chance to play in the preseason opener:

“Yeah, there is always a chance.”


On WR Derrick Willies:

“We need Derrick to keep coming, to keep doing his job and stay in his book and knowing what to do, how to do it and when to do it, and Derrick will be fine. Right now, he just needs to keep working.”


On what he saw from Willies last year:

“Last year, he demonstrated the ability to catch the ball and run after the catch with the ball. He is a big target, of course – a big rangy target. Then he helped us out last year on special teams tremendously. He was really doing a good job on special teams and then he was coming on as a receiver. We expect him to keep coming and doing the same sort of things.”


On TE Pharaoh Brown:

“Pharaoh is just like everybody else. He is trying to work and get better. He is not a finished product, but he is definitely in the competition and he is going to keep working.”


On if Willies caught his eye last year:

“I really just go off what I see and our staff tries to go off what they see on an everyday basis. That could change tomorrow. Today is over with so we want them to put their best foot forward tomorrow. That is what we are expecting out of Derrick, just like the rest of our guys.”


On if TE David Njoku was on a pitch count today:

“He was on a little bit of a pitch count, but he wanted to get work and he wanted to keep going, but I took him out. There was no need to keep going. Sometimes these guys get cold, and in a situation like this, they are not loose because the extended period of the time they are on the sideline. Some guys we just want to be a little more careful with. We are still a week into it or 10 days into it now.”


On if training camp has seemed longer than 10 days:

“That was because you were sleeping in the indoor facility the other day when I walked in there (laughter). Really, I do not even know what day it is because we will go back tonight, we will get out the scripts that we made for tomorrow and the schedule that we made for tomorrow and the schedule that we made for tomorrow. We are on for the next day and trying to get better the next day. Really, we lose track of what day it is. We are just day by day anyway.”


On if he was in his element when speaking to the crowd today:

“I do not know it is just kind of talking to me. I should have brought Tony (Grossi) out there with me. I should have told everybody that he got a hole in one – that it what I should have did (laughter).”


On if likes the direction of the team so far:

“I do. I like this team. I like it when a team cares about each other. I like it when a team compete against each other very, very hard, and then they pick each other up and pat each other on the tail and do it again the next play. We are not totally there yet but we are going to get there. I think these guys are committed to getting there. If we get there, we will have a chance, but that only just gives us a chance. That is all it does. I think these guys are going to do that. They are committed to doing that. They have done nothing but work their tail off, done everything we have asked them to do and I expect it to continue. We are going to hold them accountable, but what I want to get to eventually is for them to hold themselves accountable to each other and then we will have something. We are headed in that direction. I am not satisfied, but I am happy up to this point. We are only a week and a half into this thing.”


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