HC Kevin Stefanski (8.8.21)

Head Coach Kevin Stefanski:

Opening statement:

“Good to see everybody. Great seeing our fans out here. This was incredible. Not surprised. This is a uniquely loyal fanbase, and I appreciate that. Great seeing all of the kids out here and people bringing their families out here so that was outstanding. They brought the energy. They definitely brought the juice out here. I know the players responded to that. Got some really good work in situationally. Saw us down in the red zone a couple of times. Saw some two-minute drills. Pleased with the work today.”


On Hall of Fame Head Coach Tony Dungy visiting today’s practice and addressing the team:

“I met Coach Dungy through (Bills defensive coordinator) Leslie Frazier years ago. Obviously, he is a Hall of Fame coach, but he is a Hall of Fame person. He has been very supportive of me, and we have stayed in touch. I made sure if he was in town for the festivities down there, I wanted him to come over and visit the team. I got to spend some time with him before practice and then he shared some words with the team. It was outstanding.”


On if the competition elevated in practice today due to having more fans and being at FirstEnergy Stadium:
“Yeah, you definitely do. We track the intensity at practice via the GPS. It is amazing when you are in the stadium or the lights are on for a night practice and you have fans, all of a sudden, guys are running faster and they are running longer and the intensity picks up. Not surprised by that. Again, just kudos to our fans for coming out in mask.”


On if he was ever concerned that practice would have not taken place due to the weather:

“I do not if you remember last year, but there was some strange weather last year, as well (laughter). That is nothing new to us. We were pretty confident it was going to pass through and we could safely of practice.”


On if he feels like the TE group is coming together strong, especially as TE David Njoku performed well today:

“We feel good about that room – we have talked about it. We think all of those guys have unique skills. They all complement each other in their skills. Pleased to see them making some plays. They are going to have to continue to do that for us.”


On QB Case Keenum making tight throws today:

“Case did a job in there. The ball to (TE) Harrison (Bryant) was a really nice throw and a really great catch that Harrison made with the DB’s back turned to him. Case was good.”


On if S Grant Delpit missing multiple practices and if there is more to it than managing Delpit’s return from season-ending injury last year:

“He is dealing with a hamstring that he is working through.”


On if Delpit is expected to return is soon:

“I would hope so.”


On CB Denzel Ward being on the sideline in today’s practice:

“Just normal resting.”


On if speeding up the tempo is part of taking the offense to the next level:

“It is the natural evolution of things. To say we are going to do it every game, I do not know that, but you have to have many ways to attack a defense. We want to make sure that we are growing in that regard. For us, we always look at each game as ‘How do we win this game? What does this game call for?’ That is what practice is for – working all these things.”


On DT Malik McDowell leaving practice early:

“He had an oblique. I hesitate to call it a strain because I do not know. They took him in so we will see.”


On if he can share anything Dungy told him personally:

“It was a great conversation between coach and I. Again, he is somebody I could not have more respect for Tony Dungy and what he has meant to this game. He is a special, special person. He was upfront. He made sure that guys knew he was a Steeler, we get that (laughter), but he is an ambassador for football. I think he is an important figure in our game. I really could not be more humbled to have him out here to talk to the team.”


On if anything stands out about QB Baker Mayfield through the past weeks of training camp:

“He is pushing along. He has had some really good moments and some moments to learn from. That is the natural course of training camp. I think the defense has made our offense really really work. They have done a nice job of being tight in coverage. The pass rush and the run fits have been outstanding. It is a really good battle back and forth, and we have said that I know you want to score every practice, but I think these guys are trading blows every day.”


On if there was a particular reason the kickers kicked near the Dawg Pound:

“I knew you were going to ask me that (laughter). They came down this past week and kicked in the Dawg Pound so I made sure of that for you. We will work both sides as we get going.”


On if any young Browns players have stood out through this point in camp:

“That whole rookie class, they work really hard. That is no surprise to me because I was around them back in May seeing how they operate. They are pushing each other. I am pleased with all of those guys.”


On the first team offense not getting the results they wanted and if that helps when going back through film:

“You have to learn from every rep, good or bad. Certainly, it is not very fun when you learn from the bad reps, oftentimes for the players. We can teach off of it. It is our first time being in a two-minute team drill like that so communication just has to be on point. I thought the guys did a nice job, but you could say bad job by the offense and say good job by the defense. Just as long as we are continuing to learn and trying to get better with each rep.”


On if practice will be ramped up more on Tuesday after tomorrow’s off day ahead of the preseason game at Jacksonville:

“Not really. We are still in training camp mode. We will spend a little bit of time on Jacksonville on Thursday as we install a gameplan, but really, the focus for us is we have to get better at a lot of areas and we are not going to spend too much time on Jacksonville. Really, I should say, we will not spend time on that until Thursday. You are in training camp. There is a lot of work that needs to be done as opposed to putting in a gameplan to try to win the game.”


On if today’s practice marked the end of the first portion of training camp before things get ramped up in another phase:

“Not really. You get into where you are travelling and you are going to play some opponents, but we are definitely still in the dog days of training camp.”


On how his relationship with QB Baker Mayfield has evolved:

“It is like any relationship with all of those players. I feel like I know (WR) Jarvis (Landry) better. Jarvis can come up and tell me what he is seeing because we are not teaching the system brand new for all of the guys. I think certainly Baker, but all of those guys have made strides in understanding what we are doing. That is where the nuance comes in – I have talked about that before – where as coaches we can dive a little bit deeper into it. Baker is doing a nice job continuing to try and get better every day.”


On if he has an update on DE Takk McKinley:



On how Mayfield is handling contract negotiations:

“Our guys are professionals. They understand there is a business side to this, but we keep it focused on practice and on the meeting room – that type of thing.”


On if Mayfield is locked in and not focused on the outside noise:

“I see him locked in.”


On if he ever met former Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden, who recently passed away:

“I did not. Condolences to the Florida State family and the Bowden family. A legend. I was reading about him this morning. The records are unbelievable.”


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