OL coach Bill Callahan (11.12.21)


On G Blake Hance’s performance at T this season:

“He is a utility guy who really should not be out on the end, but he is really surviving out there is how I would call it. He is giving us good play, especially in the run game, which we obviously love, but in the pass game, he has had his struggles here and there, but I do commend him on a lot of levels because we have been so shorthanded. To have him step up and step in at the tackle position has been huge for us. A lot of great things from that aspect of playing out of position, but he has been serviceable. He has given us quality reps while (T) Jack (Conklin) has been out, and obviously, Hub (T Chris Hubbard) went to IR. It has been good. It has been positive from that aspect. He continues to get better. He works his butt off every day to try to improve. What else can you say? He is just a really tough, smart, hard-nosed guy who loves football, and he has really done a really good job for a guy who really should not be there. A lot of positives from that standpoint.”


On Gs Joel Bitonio and Wyatt Teller signing contract extensions with the Browns:

“I am really happy for them. I have never really paid a lot of attention to the business side of it, but I am happy to see those guys get extended. They are just really good, solid people and well deserving. The business side is what it is. Hopefully, this will help Bitonio not have to do any more commercials (laughter). It is all good.”


On the Patriots defensive front:

“Across the front, they are very multiple. They are going to give you some base looks, which they have gotten back into now. Looking at the Carolina game, they are jumping back into their old mold of playing the true 3-4. Then they will jump into a lot of different sub-looks. They are going to give you a lot of different variations when they jump into that package. There is a lot of movement associated with these fronts. That is our challenge this week. I do not know what is going to happen or where they are going to come from, but they have really good players inside. I have a lot of respect for their outside backers. Of course, (Patriots LB Matthew) Judon and obviously No. 53 (Patriots LB Kyle) Van Noy – he has been a good player for years. Their inside guys, (Patriots LBs Dont’a) Hightower and (Ja’Whaun) Bentley are really solid, capable and good diagnosis. They come downhill. They fill the gaps, and they build a wall. They are really solid. They have gotten better up front. (Patriots DL) Deatrich Wise (Jr.) is solid. I like his play. The young rookie out of Alabama (Patriots DT Christian Barmore), he is playing hard. The nose tackles, No. 92 (Patriots DT Davon Godchaux) and No. 98 (DL Carl Davis), they are really good. That has always been kind of a staple in that 3-4 system is having the nose control that inside and control the center and the A gaps. They do a really good job of it.”


On if a team needs five elite players when building an OL, given many teams may not always have a top-tier player at both G positions:

“I think it is just one of those situations where both guys are here. Joel has been a solid player for years, and e has elevated his game another notch. Wyatt has elevated his game. That is the market. That is the way it is. I do not read too much into that. I do know when I was in Dallas, we paid for that line. We put a lot of resources into that line. We drafted (Cowboys T) Tyron Smith, and the next piece of that puzzle was getting the center in (former Cowboys C Travis) Frederick. The next piece was getting (Cowboys G Zack) Martin. That line kind of built its way throughout the years. I think for any organization that really likes to run the football and has that as a primary function of their offense, I think that is where the resources should go, not only in the run game is that important, but from a protection standpoint, that even becomes more vital. I do not think you can ever put enough resources into your line. I have been fortunate enough to be around a lot of good guys, good lines and organizations that really value that aspect of the offense. Everything starts up front anyhow so that makes total sense to me.”


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