Head Coach Kevin Stefanski (10.7.22)


Opening statement:

““First of all, good luck to the Guardians. We are pulling for Tito (Cleveland Guardians Manager Terry Francona), the boys down there and that whole crew. I know the game is on right now. I will have it on up in my office. Pulling for those guys. I would be remiss if I did not say I am pulling for the Phillies too on the other side of the bracket.


“Looking forward to Sunday down on the lake. I think it is going to be a great atmosphere. Two AFC teams, it is going to be a great battle. I am looking forward to it. A good week of preparation. Still have some more work to go in that preparation. Excited for the opportunity. Excited for the challenge.”


On DE Myles Garrett not receiving a game designation on the injury report and being expected to play on Sunday:

“Yeah, good to go for Sunday. Excited to have him back out there.”


On DE Jadeveon Clowney returning to practice:

“He got some work done today. We will take that to Sunday and make a decision when we get to Sunday.”


On Garrett seeming glad to return to practice this week:

“He is a competitor. Obviously, missed being out there. Very grateful to be back out there and with his teammates. Yeah, I do think that he was energized.”


On if Clowney’s status will be determined during pregame warmups:

“It might. What happens a lot of times on these type of decisions is it is Friday 12:44 p.m. so want to use all of the time we have available to us before we make that decision.”


On Clowney’s comment about the desire to play soon but also the importance of waiting until ready so as to not make the injury worse:

“I think all players are dealing with injuries to varying degrees. It is a part of our game that nobody likes. There is that balance of you want guys to push it and make it back, but you also want to protect them from themselves and make sure that it is safe for them to do so. That is what we will do with JD. That is really what we will do with all of our players.”


On if CB Greedy Williams will be activated before Sunday’s game:

“We will see.”


On QB Deshaun Watson being able to return to the facility on Oct. 10:

“I have not talked to him since the day that he walked out of the building. Looking forward to seeing him and getting him back around his teammates. I know there are limitations to what he can do early. I think he can be in meetings but can’t be out in practice, walkthrough and those type of things. Will be great to get him back in the building.”


On if the organization has been allowed to contact Watson during the first portion of the suspension:

“No. Probably medically, but no.”


On T Jedrick Wills Jr.’s performance this season:

“I think Jed has done a nice job certainly in a bunch of areas, but we have talked about it, he is healthy, and I think that is such a big deal with Jed and our big men and feeling confident and healthy. I think he is playing well, and he has to continue to do that.”


On how the Browns can be more consistent on both sides of the ball in the fourth quarter:

“To your point, you have to play a 60-minute football game or more in the NFL these days. I saw the stat where how close all of the games were last weekend. That is just the nature of the NFL and the nature of parity in this league. You are going to be in 60-minute affairs. We understand that. We understand that you have to be locked in for all 60 of those minutes – that is players, coaches and all of us. We just have to make sure that we are locked in and ready to go.”


On if the Browns have a specific person who advises when to challenge a call:

“I would say it is collective. I have a bunch of coaches upstairs in that booth that I really trust. The nice part with the rules now, you really don’t rush to challenge anything unless the offense is rushing to get on the ball. You really can take your time and because officials have the ability to make some obvious ones correct with each other. What you do is you really allow the time to go by as much as you can, let them get a good look from it upstairs so the conversation is when something like that happens, I will just be on the headset, ‘What do you guys see upstairs?’ The guys give me their opinion. When making those decisions, so much of it is risk versus reward and what the outcome may be. A random incomplete pass on second-and-10 that is not really going to move the needle is probably not worth it. You are really thinking about the outcome and how that may impact the game when you make that decision.”


On if the Browns have one person in particular who advises about challenging a call:

“We have a lot of veteran coaches up there.”


On if the Chargers offensive stats are representative of what is seen on film:

“I think early in the season, the sample sizes are so small so it is a little bit misleading on certain statistics on this unit or that unit or how we do in this area or how they do in that area. I think ultimately you have to go off the tape, the personnel, the scheme and those type of things. As the season wears on and you build up more games, I think those stats probably become more true.”


On the significance of the Browns defense potentially having DT Taven Bryan, Clowney and Garrett back on the field this Sunday:

“Every team is dealing with injuries to some degree. For us, I would love to have all of those guys out there obviously, but we will see how it goes. I think that is such an important thing in this league is when guys can’t make it, guys have to step up. That is just the nature of it. I think we have seen in moments guys have done a really nice job in stepping up. Yeah, of course, you would love to have all of your players out there.”


On Bryan’s performance this season:

“Playing well. A good fit for what we are doing. Plays hard. Good in the run and the pass.”


On if Williams’ designation to return from IR this week is an indication Williams could be activated, particularly given Williams was needed in last year’s Browns-Chargers game:

“We will see. It kind of goes back to what we were talking about earlier. You have to deal with all of these injuries case by case and what the person needs. He did a nice job in practice. We will see where it goes this weekend. Definitely, he is progressing, and proud of how he is rehabbing.”


On Chargers OL Jamaree Salyer playing T due to injury and the Chargers OL:

“Playing in his collegiate position back out of tackle. I know he was playing guard for them previously. They have a good offensive line. I really believe that they are well coached, and they also have a quarterback who does a nice job of getting the ball out of his hands and gets it out of his hands both in the play design and how they design their offensive attack of making sure the ball is out, and then he also does a nice job of at a hint of trouble, he is going to get rid of the ball, and he is not going to take a sack. He does a nice job in that and then also just with their max protections, whether off their play-actions, third down or those type of things, they have a very, very good scheme. I think they have good players up front, and they also play very, very hard.”


On the Chargers offense not running the ball as much this season:

“They are the No. 1 pass offense, but I don’t want that to be misleading. They have the players. The running back (Chargers RB Austin Ekeler) is outstanding so you can’t assume that a team is either not going to run it or you are just going to line up and defeat it. You have to go stop the run. That is something for us every single game that is important.”


On if the Chargers’ tempo is the fastest the Browns have seen thus far in 2022:

“It is definitely going to be if not the fastest real close. They do a nice job. They may get on the ball right away on first down, and they may stay on the ball going into third down and into fourth down. They mix their tempos. Even when they are out of the huddle, they are really attacking the line of scrimmage with shifts and motions. This is a game where we have to get aligned quickly.”


On having CBs with good size and length to help defend WRs with size like Chargers WR Mike Williams:

“Our guys – you mentioned MJ (Cornerback Martin Emerson Jr.), and you are right – but the other guys have length. (CB) Denzel (Ward) has length, as well. When you are going up against a player like No. 81, he is a physical, physical player. He has over the course of his career found a way to come down with contested balls. That is a big part of it. Also, they are moving him around all over the formation. He is a special player. I think we will see if there is one guy that gets him or multiple guys that get him, but even when one player is defending him, you have to be very hyper-aware of where he is in the formation.”


On Chargers WR Keenan Allen potentially not playing this week:

“I know he didn’t practice the last couple of days. He may practice today for all we know. He is excellent. I remember when he was coming out, and he gets open. He is one of those guys who has the knack for getting open, knows how to sit in zones and knows how to separate versus man. Big player, a more physical player. Can play in the slot. I have a ton of respect for him.”


On if the Browns are preparing with the assumption Allen will play:

“Yeah, we are assuming he is playing.”


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