Head Coach Kevin Stefanski (11.21.22)


Opening statement:

“Injury front, (C) Ethan Pocic has a knee injury. That will be in the weeks but not entirely sure how many weeks that is. (T) Jack Conklin with that foot injury should be OK. Obviously, looking back on that game, just some really missed opportunities is what it was. You go and play a good football team, you have to capitalize on opportunities when you get down in the red zone and you have to come away with sevens. We just didn’t capitalize on opportunities. In the second half, we have to find a way to get a stop and play complementary football. We just didn’t do that. That is what [happens] when you get those results that we got yesterday. We have to find a way. We have another good team this week coming to our place, and we have to find a way to go 1-0 this week.”


On the Browns’ recent struggles in run defense despite looking to make corrections during the practice week:

“To your point, you are trying to do anything you can to get the results you are looking for. In order to play good run defense, schematically we have to make sure that we play fast, can fit our gaps and be sound in everything that we are doing. Didn’t do that yesterday enough. You have to tackle, you have to run to the ball and all of those things. We will continue to look at it and find a way because teams are going to continue to try to run the football, and we have to stop it.”


On DE Myles Garrett’s comment after yesterday’s game that ‘not enough emphasis is being placed on takeaways at practice’ and S Grant Delpit saying ‘you can’t have faith in your teammates if guys don’t know what to do’:

“When you are 3-7, there is frustration. That is what we are today, 3-7. The bottom line is every person in this building – players, coaching staff and you name it – have to have that attitude of fixing anything that needs to be fixed. That is where our focus is today. I can’t speak to those specific things that those guys said, but those are conversations I will have with our guys.”


On if C Hjalte Froholdt will start at C while Pocic is unavailable:



On external criticism of defensive coordinator Joe Woods and individuals calling for Woods to be fired:

“My focus is on us getting better. My focus is on us getting a win versus Tampa and playing good offense, playing good defense and playing good special teams. That is where my focus is.”


On the Browns’ recent struggles on defense and what can be done differently to make improvements:

“The bottom line is you have to play good defense for 60 minutes. In that first half – obviously, gave up that touchdown late – had some three-and-outs so we have to play consistently for 60 minutes. I don’t dispute that at all. There are definitely areas that we can improve playing sound defense. There are also areas we can improve in playing good team complementary football. That is from we were -1 in the turnover margin yesterday and we had a field goal blocked. We just didn’t do enough things as a team to win that football game.”


On Chief Strategy Officer Paul DePodesta’s involvement in helping prepare the team’s gameplan each week:

“Paul and really a bunch of areas in our building give me and our coaches, and our scouts, give us a ton of great information. Paul is very helpful to me throughout the week in a bunch of conversations in all areas of football, not specific to one area.”


On concerns about the Browns being in Year 3 of the defensive scheme and having struggles in recent weeks:

“Again, I go back to it is frustrating to be 3-7. There is frustration that comes with that. I get that there is negativity that comes with that. We are going to focus on what we can do better and focus on things that we can control. What we control this week is finding a way to go get a win.”


On the balance between providing a comprehensive gameplan that can help the team produce with players being able to understand and execute all assignments within the gameplan:

“We all share in it. 3-7, we all share in it. That defines us today, but the focus right now is what we are going to do this week.”


On how to improve Browns players’ understanding and execution of the gameplan:

“To your question – this is for all sides of the ball – you are always trying to give your guys a plan that they can go play fast. When you get to Sundays, you don’t want to be thinking; you want to be reacting. We look at all of those things. We look at walkthroughs, how we conduct walkthroughs and how often we do a walkthrough. All of those things are important in your preparation because it does come down to your preparation. Having said that, what is important for our players and what is important for our coaches is to put together a plan for this week. We can control this week, and that is what we are going to do.”


On if the message to the team this week is to control what it can control and continue to stay focused on what is ahead and still playing meaningful football despite not being happy with the current record:

“I think a lot of that is true. Again, I get the frustration. I get the feelings after wins. After a loss is not fun. We are looking to play good football. What we can control right now is our attitude obviously, and then we control this week.”


On not making adjustments to the coaching during the season:

“My focus really is on this week and what we can do this week to find a win. I understand frustration. I get it. I own it. I own all of it. We have to share it as players, coaches and staff.”


On LB Deion Jones playing a limited number of snaps yesterday:

“Just the course of the game. (LB Sione) Taki (Takitaki) playing MIKE linebacker for us and was doing a nice job. Then obviously, JOK (LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah) was playing a ton.”


On if the blocked FG yesterday was due to a low trajectory or protection issues:

“We have to look at it. It is a focus of ours that we have to make sure we are working on with (K) Cade (York). Have to have a high trajectory on those kicks. Something we are just working on.”


On Garrett’s comment about not emphasizing takeaways in practice enough and if the coaches are placing enough emphasis on takeaways in practice:

“Again, Myles speaks for Myles. I will talk to him about it. I know this, we put a lot of emphasis on takeaways in our building. We haven’t gotten them. That has been our issue. In these games, we have to take the football away, and we will look for ways to do that.”


On if he feels like Browns players are prepared enough as possible to understand their assignments and execute the gameplan on gamedays:

“I do. Mental errors and those type of things, they happen in football. I am not naïve to say that we are going to play the perfect game. I think these guys work really, really hard during the week to make sure that they have a very firm grasp of what we are doing. When the other team makes a play, they make a play, but you have to tackle and you have to get them on the ground. Overall understanding of what we are doing, I think the guys are putting in the work.”


On mistakes seeming to snowball in games and how to keep that from occurring in a game:

“You make your own luck. I really believe that. You just have to make one play. One play to your point might turn the momentum of a football game. That is on us to go make those plays.”


On what led to the uncharacteristic number RB Nick Chubb’s carries for loss yesterday:

“First of all, they did a nice job in that scheme. They were penetrating. There are things that we can do to give Nick and our backs a better opportunity, but we have to run the ball better obviously, and I think we will.”


On Owusu-Koramoah’s strong performance yesterday after returning from injury and having a good week of practice:

“Played a lot. Played sideline to sideline. Wasn’t perfect. There are plays that I know he wants back. Gave great effort. Tried to fight to get guys on the ground and fight to get the ball out.”


More if the blocked FG yesterday was due to a low trajectory or protection issues:

“I don’t think it was protection. Obviously, can’t measure exactly the trajectory and those type of things. That is an emphasis. All kickers are trying to make sure that they get great trajectory on those kicks.”


On support and encouragement from Browns ownership at this point of the season:

“Again, focus on this week. We meet every week with ownership. They are here every day so great conversations throughout the day. We are all frustrated – I get that part of it – but again, the focus is on this week and what we can do this week to go 1-0.”


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