HC Kevin Stefanski (9.3.20)

Head Coach Kevin Stefanski:

On RB Nick Chubb and Chubb being even keeled at all times: 

“He is a man of few words, even less than me.”


On WR Donovan Peoples-Jones’ comment that it is inspiring to see Chubb work as hard as he does and if that has a trickle-down effect within the team: 

“Absolutely. I love how Nick Chubb works. You see him on the grass and you see him in the classroom, he is all ball all the time. He is a good person. He is a solid citizen. He is a great teammate. Pleased with what Nick means to this team.”


On tomorrow’s practice at FirstEnergy Stadium and its significance for Saturday’s roster cuts: 

“The way we are looking at tomorrow, it is a dress rehearsal in the stadium. I mean that literally in terms of they are going to be in their uniforms, the coaches are going to be dressed in their game attire, we are going put headsets on and the coaches will be up in the booth. It is going to be a crisp, quick practice. It is not going to be a scrimmage. It is not going to be something where we are going to play the young guys for an hour to see what we have because the truth is, this whole camp has been an evaluation of those young guys. They get evaluated in their individual period and they get evaluated in the classroom so it is way more of a dress rehearsal. The guys need to go through what pregame warmup looks like. Things like that are how we are viewing tomorrow’s practice.”


On CB A.J. Green: 

“He has done a nice job. He has good size. He is taking to the techniques that (defensive coordinator) Coach (Joe) Woods and (pass game coordinator/defensive backs) Coach (Jeff) Howard and (assistant defensive backs) Coach (Brandon) Lynch are teaching him. He has been very eager to learn. I have been pleased with what he has been doing.”


On Minnesota being one of three NFL teams to run the ball more than they threw it last season and if that was by design and would have been expected at the beginning of the season: 

“I would say a little bit of both. You try to play to the strengths of your team, knowing that it is going to pivot every four or so weeks. Ultimately, just like here and just like I promise you at the 31 other clubs, they are talking about what they do best is my guess.”


On if there will be situations where Chubb and RB Kareem Hunt will be together in the backfield: 

“We want to make sure we are multiple and versatile. Could I see a scenario like that? Sure. Could I see a scenario with four tight ends and a receiver? You have to go into every game with the mindset of whatever personnel you think may cause some conflict to the defense, you do that. I do not want to overstate it, and also, it is hard to speculate right now just not being in gameplan mode just yet.”


On the genesis of the 4 H’s – hopes, hero, heartbreak and history: 

“The genesis of it is my mindset in this virtual offseason and virtual training camp was how do we come together while apart. This idea of the 4 H’s came from I was on a call back in March with VCU men’s basketball. One of their coaches I went to high school with, (VCU director of operations) Jimmy Martelli, and we talked about a lot of things and we talked about just that. Jimmy brought up something that they had done and their coaching staff had done, and it was just a way to share with your team. I just thought it would be helpful to do that in a virtual setting while guys are not spending a ton of time in the locker room together. That was kind of the genesis of it, and it has been unbelievable to hear some of the stories, what people have come from and where they are going.”


On evaluating the team as a whole at this point of the year and expectations for the year: 

“I think a lot of that, as you can imagine, we want to keep to ourselves. I will tell you this, this team works. There has not been one moment, one time out here on the practice field that this team has bucked at the thought of working. They have done everything we have asked them. They have pushed through when it is hot. They have pushed through injuries. We are just trying to get a team that when we cut this thing down to 53, which is not going to be easy, we want to get a team that we feel confident going into the season. I think you know I am not going to make any bold proclamations or predications about who we are.”


On if the Browns accomplished everything that was set prior to training camp with the last practice tomorrow:

“Yeah, I do. I think the credit goes to the coaches and to our staff. We put together a plan, and we adjusted and we adapted. I cannot tell you how many times we have changed the schedule on the players and the coaches. Again, it has been a resilient bunch. I feel like we have done the things that we set out to do, and now, we just have to go play football.”


On the reaction to Vikings QB Kirk Cousins comments about wearing a mask:

“I do not really want to comment on that. I will leave that to the Vikings.”


On WR Donovan Peoples-Jones:

“He has gotten better every day. He came out here, and I can tell you, his effort has grown immensely from Day 1 to Day 13. We are putting a lot on his plate. (Pass game coordinator/ wide receivers) Coach (Chad) O’Shea coaches those guys hard and he has not backed down one bit. We have had him play multiple positions. He is a rookie. He is going to make, has made and will make rookie mistakes like the rest of them, but I have been pretty pleased with how he has pushed through that.”


On versatility on offense but ensuring the offense doesn’t have too much on its plate:

“That is fair point. What we try to do on the offensive side, it may look difficult to the defense but it should be easy for the offense. You mentioned formations, there are some things that you can do – alignments, motions, shifts – the goal is to confuse the defense and not the offense. I think that is where our coaches have to be very mindful of that very point.”


On if C JC Tretter has done anything to ‘push the needle’ to get back on the field, given his recent comments that they are focused on the current day on Tretter’s status:

“Can I stick to the first answer (laughter)? Honestly, it is just one of those with any of the guys that are injured, we are just going to let them continue their rehab, and then when we get into game week next week, we will determine what is best for him and for the team.”


On strides QB Baker Mayfield has made to become more of a leader:

“He does a nice job in the leadership department. I think as a quarterback, you are the leader, whether you want to be or not in a lot of ways, but he never shied away from that role. He encourages his teammates. He has a great dialogue with them out at the practice field. I think they know that he has their back, and I think it is vice versa. His style to me is very authentic.”


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