Head Coach Kevin Stefanski (12.9.22)


Opening statement:

“Good day out there on the practice fields. Guys got some really good work in. Again, excited for the challenge. You get to these second division games when you know each other so well – they know us, and we know them – it is really a great challenge on both sides. I think it is going to be a physical matchup. Again, I think they are very, very well coached. They have great players. We have to play our best and we have to coach our best to try and go get a win on the road.”


On WR Amari Cooper being listed as questionable with a hip injury:

“He is questionable. He wasn’t able to practice today so we will see how it goes.”


On if Cooper’s injury was sustained in practice yesterday:

“It did. Just it happened in practice and just did not feel like he was able to go today. Just have to really take this one over the next couple of days and see where it lands.”


On working on chemistry between Cooper and QB Deshaun Watson and the impact of Cooper missing today’s practice and some of yesterday’s session:

“It is what it is in that regard. I do think those guys have gotten a lot of reps together over the last months and going back to the spring and summer. Obviously, you would like to get them live reps today, but it is what it is.”


On evaluating Watson’s mechanics in last week’s game:

“We talked about all of those things really postgame and Monday. What happens is any game, you look at it, and ‘Here is what you would do differently. Here is a correction that you can make for alignment. Here is a six-inch step that we need you to take.’ It is all of those type of things that you work on postgame. That is part of playing this game is doing something, making a correction and making sure you work on it the next week.”


On if the Browns were able to do anything in particular during the practice week to help Watson reacclimated to movement in the pocket and preparing to take hits:

“There are things that you can do in practice that we have done. There are things that you work on in individual period and that type of thing. Again, it is game reps and it is team reps. All of those things add up.”


On if areas of improvement for Watson are correctable during the three-day practice week:

“Everything with football and with technique is just continued repetitions at technique.”


On TE David Njoku returning to practice this week:

“Dave has looked like himself really. He looks good.”


On if the Bengals appear to have a solid one-two punch in the running game after Bengals RB Semaje Perine had strong performances when Bengals RB Joe Mixon was unavailable:

“[Perine] has run really, really well. He runs really hard. That remains to be seen [how they use their running backs]. I wouldn’t be surprised. Either one of those guys are very, very good running backs.”


On Bengals DT D.J. Reader:

“A very, very good player. They stop the run better when he is out there as you can imagine. A very physical player. We have played him before so it is somebody who we are familiar with. He is certainly a big player for them in their defense – run defense and pass defense.”


On how WR Michael Woods II can contribute more on offense after being inactive in recent weeks:

“With a lot of players and the young players in particular, the actives and inactives become a special teams type of decision and where we need a roster spot or what we want to try. It is not uncommon for players to kind of be up and be down. He continues to work really, really hard. He is rhythming up with the quarterback and getting extra reps with Deshaun. He is a very aware player and a guy I think we can count on.”


On if LB Reggie Ragland will potentially play this week:

“He is probably still acclimating. This is a new system for him. Excited about where he is. He is very, very smart. He has done a nice job throughout this week, but want to make sure that he is continuing to understand our defense, our terminology and those type of thigs.”


On CBs Greg Newsome II’s and Denzel Ward’s performance in recent weeks after dealing with injuries this season:

“Like you mentioned, when you are dealing with injuries and being in and out of the lineup, you are looking to get in a rhythm as a defensive player. Certainly, as those guys are able to stack games and play good football, I think that will help their progression this season.”


On how much of a factor is a defensive player’s body type when considering matchups against WRs:

“It does, but I would tell you there are some big receivers who play small and some small receivers who play big. It is really dependent on the receiver. They have some really, really good ones. (Bengals WR Ja’Marr) Chase, we have talked about is as explosive as they come. (Bengals WR Tee) Higgins makes big plays down the field, a big body and a very, very impressive route tree. (Bengals WR Tyler) Boyd is excellent in that slot. He is an unbelievable choice route runner. I have a ton of clips of him running choices. AVP (offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt) was with him in Cincinnati so a lot of our teach tape on choice routes are Tyler Boyd because he is very, very good – and I think AVP likes him because he went to Pitt.”


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