Head Coach Kevin Stefanski (9.17.21)


Opening statement:

“Excited for the opportunity this Sunday against a really good football team coming into our house. I am really excited to see that place at full capacity. I have not seen that yet. I have heard the stories. I am looking forward to all of Northeast Ohio coming up for this game. I want to get the message out that Coach Stefanski wants you in your seats at kickoff – no empty seats. I want full-throated effort for all 60 minutes. Get out of the Muni Lot, get into your seat and you can go back to the Muni Lot after the game. You make a difference, and I really believe that. The home advantage in the NFL is such a big deal, and I think our fans make a difference. You are talking about third down and fourth down. We will be looking for any delays of game from them or false starts. Those type of things are a direct correlation to our crowd. When we are on offense, looking to hear a pin drop. Excited to see and excited to experience that for the first time.”


On what he remembers from coaching in Cleveland in 2009 while with the Vikings:

“It was (Pro Football Hall of Fame QB Brett) Favre’s first game [with the Vikings] so that was kind of unique. I remember (former NFL WR) Percy Harvin had a touchdown. I do not remember much of it from the experience. I was kind of probably charting plays, my nose down in the chart and had my pencil going. I am looking forward to it. That is a unique experience down there on the lake. I am looking forward to that being a big part of how we win.”


On LB Anthony Walker Jr. being placed on injured reserve and the timetable for return:

“Yeah, he is on IR for three weeks is the hope.”


On who the signal caller is on defense:

“We will work through it. That is something we have talked about. When we get to the game, we will see what we are going to do. We have a plan obviously to rotate in some linebackers.”


On who takes Walker’s spot as starting MIKE:

“We will work through it. (LB) Malcolm Smith is a candidate. (LB) Elijah Lee is a candidate.”


On if the Browns have a plan at LT:

“Yes, we have a plan at tackle. We will see how it goes over the next few hours to see how (T) Jed (Wills Jr.) responds, but if he cannot make it to the game, we have a plan.”


On if Wills participated in practice more than riding a bike to the side, which was the case during the portion open to media:



On Walker’s performance in Week 1:

“He did a nice job. He is a big part of what we do. Obviously schematically, Xs and Os, he is a big part of who we are. He is a great leader. He is going to continue to lead, even though he is not playing. He is going to support his teammates.”


On if Walker’s injury means a bigger role for LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah:

“I think for all of those linebackers, everybody has to pick up the slack.”


On if the Browns offense needs to be more patient when facing a Texans assistant head coach/defensive coordinator Lovie Smith defense, given the emphasis on creating takeaways:

“I think there are certain defenses that require more patience, not just the Tampa 2. There is also the Hawk 3 teams or the Seattle’s of the world that try to limit your explosives and keep things in front of you It certainly requires discipline. It requires a lot of things, really: precision in the pass game, landmarks, spacing, timing, accuracy and all of those things.”


On if he has a rule of ‘if you don’t practice, you don’t play’ like some other coaches:

“My rule is I am going to treat every [situation] case by case.”


On if he has received anything from the NFL about sideline etiquette for coaches following the incident involving S Ronnie Harrison Jr. and a Chiefs assistant coach:

“There was a memo that went out to the entire league just reminding people and staff members of how you have to conduct yourself on the sideline.”


On if he or the Browns are predisposed to wanting to go for it on fourth down:

“I am predisposed to trying to make sure I give our guys a chance to succeed. Whatever the situation calls for, we want to put them in a good position to succeed.”


On who is involved in the decision to go for it on fourth down:

“Ultimately, it is my decision. We have a group that gets together Friday morning and talks about all of the things that might come up from a game management standpoint. We talk about what we want our chart to look like on fourth-and-1. Then we have discussion throughout the game, but ultimately, I make the call.”


On a statistic saying NFL teams went for it on fourth down for the most times ever during Week 1 and if there is a reason to it or is circumstantial:

“I do not know. I pay attention to the trends around the league obviously. It is the risk-reward. Defensively if you stop them, you get the rock right away. We will see how it plays out this week. We just want to make sure that we as coaches are calling the game that is called for.”


On if he will announce who will start at LT on Sunday:

“I am not, but you can ask (laughter).”


On if the Browns potentially have to adjust the gameplan if Wills is not available at LT:

“You see who is available to you on gameday, and you make a ton of decisions based on that. That is really across the board. I can think of certain scenarios where we did not have a starter in there on defense and we did a little bit less of this or a little bit more of that. That is the natural thing to do when you have a guy playing maybe out of position or sometimes you have a guy playing for the first time. All of those things go into how you construct a game plan.”


On LT potentially requiring more adjustments than other positions when changing personnel:

“I do not know.”


On if he felt the need to talk to P Jamie Gillan after his muffed punt in Week 1:

“He is a pro. We are past it.”


On if fans have approached him in public now that there is more opportunity for interaction than when first receiving the head coaching job:

“Yeah, people love their Brownies. I experience the excitement from our fans. That is one of the reasons why they deserve to watch us play in a full capacity stadium. They did not get that and we as a league we all did not get all of that last year so we are looking forward to them getting that opportunity on Sunday.”


On if older Browns fans have told him ‘win one before I die’:

“Not yet.”


On how WR Anthony Schwartz settled in during his NFL debut:

“I thought he did a nice job. So much of it for rookies is knowing what to do, and I think we are really fortunate with Anthony is he is verym very smart. We knew that, It was part of the reason we drafted him quite honestly. The ability to play all over the formation, get lined up, all of the nuance and all of the details that go into winning vs. man, he did a nice job.”


On WR Jarvis Landry saying Schwartz had a ‘nearly perfect game mentally’ and how rare that is from a young player:

“It is pretty rare. I think of (WR) Donovan Peoples-Jones last year who played a very similar role for us. You kind of forgot that kid is a rookie. You do not see that very often.”


On the challenges the Texans offense presents:

“They have good players, and it is a good scheme. It is a huge challenge for our defense. I think this is a team that wants to run the ball and they have the guys to do it so we will have to stop the run. I think their offensive line is big, they can move people, the quarterback is under center, he is in the pistol, they have a variety of runs, they have RPO’s and some of the Baltimore Ravens stuff shows up with (Texans Head) Coach (David) Culley’s past so it is a huge challenge.”


On if Peoples-Jones helped the team in Week 1 despite only having one catch:

“Absolutely, and that is not surprising. Those games and how much you touch the ball just varies week to week, but think about that one touch and how big it was. It was a third down where we needed it. We were in a two-minute drive. It was good coverage by them, and he makes a strong catch. We are going to call on him. We are going to need him to make plays for us.”


On S Grant Delpit not being listed on the injury report and if that indicates the team expects Delpit to take his first NFL snaps on Sunday:



On what Delpit has shown in practice:

“We brought him back on a pitch count throughout the week and then did more and did a nice job. He is locked in mentally and looking forward to getting him out there.”


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