Head Coach Kevin Stefanski (12.10.21)

Opening statement:

“Excited about the opportunity we have in front of us. We are going to play a really good team Sunday and really well-coached. We have to be up to the challenge. Looking forward to seeing our fans in that building. As they know or I hope they know, they impact the game. They have been great all year. Excited to get another one in front of them this week.”


On if TE David Njoku, P Jamie Gillan and/or LB Anthony Walker Jr. could return from the reserve/COVID-19 list in time for Sunday’s game:

“I would rule them out now.”


On if LB Jacob Phillips will be activated for Sunday’s game:

“He looked good this week. I want to look at the tape and talk to coaches about it so we will determine that later.”


On if the Browns will be careful about Phillips’ reps in potentially the first game back from being placed on injured reserve during training camp:

“Whether he makes it back this week or next week, in that first game back, we have to be mindful that he has not played football in a minute here. He had had a good week of practice. I will say this about Jacob, he has been in every single meeting, he has been in every single walkthrough and he has come on the road with us so he is very indoctrinated into what we are doing, and that is a testament to how hard he has worked.”


On if developing chemistry with holding is one of the biggest challenges with P Dustin Colquitt joining the team late in the practice weeks:

“That is definitely a consideration. He is a good holder, but that is definitely something you talk about when you have to do something like this.”


On Njoku being ruled out and the plans for TE Miller Forristall and the TE position overall this week:

“You lose David and you lose (TE) Harrison (Bryant) from the last game we just played, so you have to pivot and you have to adjust. Bringing Miller up, like I talked about the other day, he is somebody who we trust. He has done a nice job in practice. He knows what to do. Then we have to find the right personnel groupings and put guys in position, but ultimately how it all shakes out in terms of personnel, we will see by Sunday.”


On if the Browns will wait until Sunday to announce the starting RT:



On if the Browns starting RT on Sunday will be the same person the team identified would start there earlier this week:



On if there is a comfort level with Colquitt based on the significant NFL experience:

“I think so. With the specialists in particular, you have a lot of guys and you have veterans in those roles oftentimes who have been there and done that. With him, he has a good understanding of what we do. (Special teams coordinator) Coach Prief (Mike Priefer) worked with him in [Kansas City] so there is a familiarity there, as well.”


On if AFC North opponents losing in recent weeks adds anything for Sunday’s game:

“It really does not. We have to take care of our business. That is really our focus.”


On the comfort with the gameplan coming off the bye after playing the Ravens in Week 12, including specifically as it relates to the TE position with Njoku and Bryant out:

“I think the thing with the tight ends in particular, we knew Harrison was not going to play in this game, and David was going to be a long shot so early in the week we had plans that we do not have those guys. I guess sometimes it is more of a challenge when after Play 1 you lose a guy. That is kind of what we have to do as coaches is figure out who is going to be available to us on Sunday and plan accordingly.”


On if LB Malcolm Smith will start at MIKE:

“Malcolm is definitely somebody who can play in there. We rotate guys a lot. Malcolm is a guy who we would trust to have in there.”


On if LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah could play MIKE:

“I think you really could say all of the linebackers could handle it. You have a limited number of reps to get guys ready so typically, you try to make sure the guys are versatile enough and play multiple positions, but you do not want to put guys in position where they really have had no reps.”


On the Ravens staying in base defense when the Browns offense had three-WR sets and if that was surprising compared to other teams’ approach:

“I would tell you that a lot of teams have done that and played base to 11 personnel. That is not something that was unique to what we have seen. It was unique to what they have done in the past. There were quite a bit of snaps where they had not done that so that was something they chose to do in that game. Will they do it again this game? It remains to be seen. I think it just speaks to the punch-counter punch of all of these games are unique.”


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