OL coach Bill Callahan (9.25.20)

Offensive line coach Bill Callahan:

On T Jedrick Wills Jr.’s progress so far this season: 

“We are just through the first two games, and both of these games that we have played have been a little different in the respect that we threw in a little bit more in Baltimore game, and against Cincinnati, we ran it, obviously. Yeah, he is progressing. I would not say it is perfect yet, but I think progress is more important than perfection right now. Incrementally, he is getting better with the techniques that were thrown at him. I think the main thing right now is the week-to-week adaptation versus the elite pass rushers in the league. You look at this week’s challenge, that presents another set of techniques and obviously preparedness that you have to look at differently because all these rushers are different. It is a great challenge for Jedrick, as well as our team.”


On Washington’s DL:

“I think they are outstanding. I thought they were really good when I was there. You can see that the organization poured enormous resources into rebuilding the defensive line with the acquisition of (Washington DT) Jonathan Allen and (Washington LB Donald) Payne, and they took (Washington DE) Chase Young this year and (Washington DE) Montez Sweat a year ago. It has been an ongoing rebuilding project, so to speak, in that respect. You can see in the opening game against Philadelphia – I think everybody has watched their ability to rush the passer – it is different. There is more speed. There is more athleticism. The transition into the 4-3 has allowed them to really cut these guys loose, not only the edge players but the inside players, as well. It is kind of interesting. I have watched (Washington DT Matt) Ioannidis pass rush, Jonathan Allen pass rush and (Washington DT) Tim Settle, those guys are getting up the field. They are in their jet stances. By that, , their bases are narrow, their hips are up in the air, their head is down and they are like a racehorse coming out of the chute. Much different than a year ago or the last four years or five years, when I was in Washington, and they were in wide bases, wide stances and they were two-gap players. It is really difficult at times to transition into a pass rush coming out of a two-gap scheme. Much easier when you go into a 4-3 scheme. That transition has been really good for them. You can see the production that they have been able to create and the disruption that has been really productive for them. It lends itself to a really good challenge for us.”

On the difference Young’s presence has made on the Washington DL:

“I think all of them are different. It is interesting to watch them play because they put him in different spots. You won’t always see Chase on the left side. You will see him on the right side or they will put him over the guard. The same thing with Sweat, they move him around. Then you add in (Washington DE Ryan) Kerrigan, and Kerrigan is all over the place. He was just a left side guy for them in years past. The last two game films that I have watched, they have Ryan Kerrigan over the left tackle. That is interesting. Their ability to rotate their depth, not only in and out of series or downs but also to try to create different mismatches across the board is what is really interesting to me. You can make a compelling argument that they kind of gameplan who they want to go up against based on what they think of your protectors. We are ready in terms of what we are going to see. We are anticipating that all of the rushers are going to be lined up on both our guards and our tackles so it just makes our preparation that more intense. We really have to be really, really well prepared for all the different types of moves that they present.”

On the changes that the Browns OL has to make when preparing for Washington:

“Let us pick for instance a really long, lengthy type defensive then like you see in Montez Sweat, Kerrigan and also Chase Young. What you see is really exceptional length and levers in their arms. That creates the ability for them to be long-arm type players and rushers. When you long arm, going back to (Pro Football Hall of Fame DE) Jason Taylor when he was in Miami, when he created that long arm a long time ago, it presents issues because they can play from a distance and they can obviously play long. When they get that lever on your inside and your inside pec, they can create a push and all their moves come off of that particular move. That is something that type of player when they are drafted lends itself to that type of rush. Furthermore, their ability to transition out of the long arm into different rips, counters and things of that nature makes it really interesting. That is the athleticism that comes out in these players. It is nice to have a player like that who you can kind of chisel, groom and kind of fit to your techniques and add other things and other dimensions to their game. That is what I see in their players. I see their pass rush. (Washington defensive line coach) Sam Mills (III) is an excellent defensive line coach. We have gone up against him when he was in Carolina, and he presents the same type of issues. You can see the rapid growth in that defensive line in just a short period of time.”

On how smart Young has looked as a rookie, especially given the changes to the offseason, training camp and preseason:

“It is remarkable. The thing that is pretty fascinating about him is that he carries himself so well in terms of his style of play and his ability to adjust and also to counter. That is where I think most young players, they don’t have that repertoire of moves in their toolbox to throw at a pass protector. That is where I think he is really advanced. He has all the tricks and all the toolbox techniques that you want to have for a great defensive end. He is going to be great in our league, make no mistake about it. It is just interesting, comparatively speaking, I was talking to our guys about who he reminds them of, and a lot of the guys said (Titans DE) Jadeveon Clowney as a young pass rusher. That was interesting because he does kind of have that explosive element to his game and then he has the combination of his hands and explosiveness that can really create an effect. What really worries is his ability to edge and create that speed on the corner, and obviously, jar the ball loose from the quarterback when he is disconnecting the throw. That is always something that you have to emphasize as a protection coach is finishing the protection and riding out the pass protector, not only just up the field but over the top of the arc of the protection pocket.”

On how Wills has embraced the challenge of preparing for different pass rushers each week:

“That is the nature of the National Football League. At that spot, I do not think you ever settle into left tackle because your challenges are dramatic week in and week out. Different types of rushers, you can have a speed-type rusher who is a little bit lighter and a lot of quickness or you can have a power rusher that you are faced up against. We will see that when Jonathan Allen and Ioannidis come over Jedrick’s hat. You will see that matchup. Then you get the combination of the two, which is always challenging. Jed is going to have to adjust and adapt his strikes and his counters and find those windows of opportunity. When I say windows, when a pass rusher is moving up the field and his arms are moving, there is like fractional seconds where you can lay your punch and lay your hands and get your fit and get your handle so that you can control the rusher. That timing is different week in and week out. When that window opens, the ability to shoot your hands and get them inside to control the rusher becomes more important. Everybody has a different move and everybody has a different combination and a different window where you have to obviously time up your hands.”

On G Wyatt Teller:

“He is getting better. He is a hard-working kid. He is really tuned into the game. He loves it. He loves the detail, the minutiae and all the finer aspects of offensive line play that you can’t give him enough techniques. He has worked really hard with (assistant offensive line) Coach (Scott) Peters developing his pass-protection technique. You can see aspects of that show up in the game. We are still working on a lot of things with him, but we are really proud of his progress so far. He has not come close to where he can be. We have some great hopes for him to improve even more so. As we come into this weekend, that is going to be an interesting matchup to see who lines up over him. Will it be Ioannidis, Allen or Payne or will they put those ends over him on third down? It will be a real challenge and a real test because he is a big, strong guy and he is physical. When you are placed up against and countered against speed and quickness, those matchups get really interesting. I think that will be a big challenge for Wyatt as we go into the weekend.”

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