Head Coach Kevin Stefanski (11.14.22)


Opening statement:

“Like we talked about yesterday, disappointed. Games get away from you in the NFL when you don’t perform at your best, especially on the road and especially versus a good football team. The game got away towards the end of that first half – they were able to double dip. We just didn’t do enough things offensively, defensively and special teams to stay in that game. Ultimately, extremely disappointing. We have to play better, we have to coach better and we have to own that one together.”


On how surprised he was with his team’s performance yesterday following the Bengals win and bye week:

“You go into every game confident. You watch your team practice, and of course, I expected us to play better. We didn’t. I give them credit. They played better than us for sure. They coached better than us for sure. Whether you are coming off a week’s rest, two weeks’ rest or no week’s rest, it doesn’t really matter.”


On if anything was missing or lacking during the week of preparation for the Dolphins game that may have predicated the loss:



On if the Browns will reevaluate their defensive scheme due to the Dolphins’ success running the ball yesterday:

“I think you reevaluate everything week to week. Especially like you mentioned, we didn’t play well enough against the run game. You have to look at everything. You have to look at schematically what are we doing and personnel wise. You do that every week. We have to get it fixed. I know there has been at different times this year it has been different things, but that is the consistency that we are searching for that we have to find in order to play good defense in order to play a good team game. You have to play consistently on all three sides of the ball. It is always going to be something that we are looking to address.”


On injury updates regarding G Wyatt Teller, T Jack Conklin and T Jedrick Wills Jr.:

“No major updates on all of those guys. I think everybody is kind of day to day, and I expect them to get better throughout this week.”


On the Browns have been able to pinpoint what has led to inconsistency on defense, including with tackling, gap integrity and other factors, and why it has been challenging to correct those mistakes:

“I think you are exactly right. Tackling, we always have to be better. Tackling sometimes is technique. Sometimes it is getting 11 people around the ball. Gap integrity, every defense that is played – don’t care [if it is] man, zone, three deep or two deep – you have gap integrity, and you have to stay true to that. We have to work hard to make sure that we are aware of where we need to be, and we have to make sure that we are giving our guys a plan that they can go out, execute and play fast. We have done it at times. So much of run defense is when you are playing fast and you are playing physical. Certainly, have seen that at times, but we just did not do that yesterday and have to do it more consistently.”


On if there is a concerted effort to create a culture that does not allow frustrations to build too much and carry over into future weeks when things aren’t going as expected:

“I think every team and every locker room, as you know after a win, there is a lot of joy, guys are excited and those type of things. After a loss, it is ultimately just about disappointment. I know that locker room, and I know the leadership that we have on this team. I know that they are disappointed, but we have to control what we can control right now, which is own this one, learn from it, move on and then find a way next week.”


On the impact of Teller missing most of the game and if Wills sustained an injury late in the game:

“He I think just rolled his ankle. Listen, again, I will give credit to Miami. They rushed well. They rushed the passer well. They were stout against the run. We didn’t play as well as we have. That is the truth. Our guys have performed at a high level all year, and we didn’t yesterday. Again, I look inward and wonder what I can do better for those guys and what we can do better to give them a plan in the run and the pass game that they can play better. That is really what I am looking for.”


On the Browns having success with scripted drives to open games and why drives late in games have not been as successful:

“I think that game in particular was a little different in that it got to three scores there soon into that second half. We do script into the second half, as well. That is something else that we do. First 15 [plays], I think you see around the league. You go over it at night and you walk through it so typically guys have a very good understanding of early plays. Then really the work you put in throughout the week Wednesday, Thursday and Friday should be enough to execute throughout the game. Really once we get off that script, we really need to still perform at a high level both offense and defense.”


On DEs Myles Garrett and Jadeveon Clowney playing approximately 65 percent of the team’s defensive snaps yesterday:

“In that heat, we just wanted to make sure we were rolling and rotating on the defensive line as much as you could with that heat. That was really the plan. What I am talking about the gameplan, anytime you go down and you get the result that you got and you fall short in any way, you always try to be introspective, sit down, look and say, ‘What could we have done differently?’ I think that is so important. That is what today is about. Conversations with all of our coaches. ‘Alright, you can do it over again. What plays wouldn’t you run? What would you get to? What personnel groupings might you get to?’ That is where I think you have to give credit to the other team. They have a gameplan, as well. They did a nice job. We had a couple of things that we tried and didn’t work. Pin it to the next thing, and you just have to find some answers.”


On clarifying that the need to provide players with a better gameplan that they can execute is not specific to defensive coordinator Joe Woods, who has been subject to external criticism:

“Every coach, myself, we all need to come up with a better plan when you get beat like we got beat. I don’t think any of us coached well enough and I don’t think any of us played well enough when you get that result. That is the truth. All of us need to be better.”


On if there are any concerns about the team’s effort on some plays in yesterday’s game:

“No, I think the guys are playing hard. I think there are definitely going to be moments games and in warm games where guys’ tanks are running low. That is why we tried to rotate guys as much as we did. We have to clean up a lot of things in order to play good football on the road. That is just the truth.”


On the challenges in creating consistency when there are multiple aspects to correct:

“We have to play better. We have to play better offense, defense and special teams. Again, when you go down and you get the result that you got, nothing is good enough. It is just the truth. There are people who are going to be critical of that. Yeah, they should be. That is what being a fan is. That is why we are trying to be self-critical because we have to play better and we have to coach better. We understand that.”


On if Teller’s status is day to day and if Teller sustained a new injury or aggravated the calf injury:

“He just was not feeling like he was at a percentage where he could help us. He was battling. He could have gone back in there, but I just didn’t feel like where he was with that injury. It was not like he reaggravated it. It is not a new injury. Just going to continue to work through it.”


On if the team has seen any tangible or intangible reasons the team has identified for why it has not been able to win back to back games yet this season:

“I really don’t. Again, sometimes it is real simple. We have to play better. We have to coach better. We have done it at times – that is the frustrating part as you can imagine – and you have got to do it consistently in game. You have to play solid football for 60 minutes and then you have to build on that. When you do it, you have to do it for games in a row to your point. There is not one obvious answer. I just think we have to all do our job a little better.”


On how much the inability to get off blocks at the line of scrimmage led to the Dolphins having holes and production in the running game:

“When you are playing good, sound run defense like we have, you are penetrating, you are getting off blocks, you are tackling as a team and you are playing good gap control. When the other team is doing a nice job in their schemes, they are going to have a few. It was a couple of things on a couple of plays. Sometimes it was tackling. Sometimes it was gap integrity. Sometimes it was getting off blocks. Again, when you are going to play good run defense, you have to do those things all of the time.”


On if S Grant Delpit did not start due to disciplinary reasons:

“I will just say that was a team issue.”


On if Delpit not staring the game was related to an equipment issue:

“No, just a team issue.”


On if he was disappointed that Delpit did not start the game due to a team issue:

“As you can imagine, I keep all of those type of things within the team.”


On what practice will look like this week with QB Deshaun Watson being able to return to the field while still preparing QB Jacoby Brissett to start against the Bills:

“That is the next step for Deshaun is getting out there and being able to practice. We as coaches can be out there with him now and work with him, which we haven’t been able to do. We will have a plan for him to start getting ready. To your point, Jacoby is the No. 1 priority in getting him ready to play in this game. Whatever we do with Deshaun won’t take away from Jacoby’s preparation.”


On if Watson’s return can provide a morale boost to the team:

“I think everybody kind of understands the situation that we are in. The guys understand Deshaun and being a great teammate, he is going to get his work in. Jacoby is going to do the same. I don’t see it in that vein, but I just see it as the next step for Deshaun being able to practice.”


On in-game adjustments the Browns made yesterday in the running game:

“A few different things. Didn’t do anything well enough though to play consistent football and score enough points. You are always searching for a run type or a personnel that might give you an advantage in the run game. To their credit, it did not happen yesterday. We didn’t have the explosives that we are used to in that run game. Then consequently, we were playing behind the sticks too often. You have to score more points than we scored. It is never one thing. It is a play here or it is a play here on third down that sometimes can get that going. Uncharacteristic turning the ball over on the 12th play of our second drive. That is where this game you just don’t know that plays that are going to ultimately turn it, but there were plenty of opportunities for us to play good football, and we just didn’t do it enough yesterday.”


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