Ravens players (12.22.19)



ILB Josh Bynes:

On the Ravens’ defense keeping Baltimore in the game until the Ravens’ offense started to move the ball:

“We do not go out there thinking the offense is going to take care of the game for us.”


One clinching the number one seed and a bye for the playoffs:

“It means a lot. It means the world to us. Beginning of the season, people doubted this team and doubted who we were. I said it then, everyone was acting like we were 0-4, only four games into the season. We did not start off where we wanted to, but obviously we picked up where we needed to go. We have a great group of guys who are humbled. We are looking forward to it. We know what we are cable in doing. It was outstanding getting a win today.”


G/C Bradley Bozeman:

On if the Browns were doing anything in the first quarter that was surprising:

“Not necessarily. They were playing good ball. The Browns are a good football team. It does not matter who you play in this league, they are always good. They are all pros and are all getting paid. We were not playing our ball and were not doing what we needed to do to execute.”


On if the Ravens get chippy:

“We get chippy every now and than. Things happen. Tempers get high, but we just continue to play and do our job and try not to let that affect us and let us play our game.”


On if the game meant anymore since the Browns won the previous matchup:

“We want to come in and be 1-0 each week. We are not looking back, we are not looking forward. We were going to work on the week at hand. We were just trying to win the game.”


CB Brandon Carr:

On where the chippiness during the game comes from:

“It’s a battle. There are a lot of emotions out there and it goes both ways. It doesn’t matter, its football.”


On how much the Week 4 loss to Cleveland played a factor today:

“It was payback time. More importantly we had some unfinished business as far as our season. We had to finish and clinch our division, playoff berth, and home field advantage. That’s what we were playing for.”


On their 11 game win streak:

“That loss was a catalyst of us going on a winning streak, so we appreciate that. At the same time, it’s a division game and a rivalry game. That’s how we looked at it today.”


On if they felt a need to establish themselves as top in AFC:

“Every time we step on the field we feel that way. Every game is a statement game for us, until we can close the deal.”


On how it feels good to have knocked the Browns out of the playoffs officially:

“It feels great. It feels great winning in this league. I’ve been playing in this league for a lot of years and it’s hard to win each and every Sunday. To come on the road in a tough environment like this and close the game out like we did, it speaks volumes for our team.”


K Justin Tucker:

On if it means more clinching everything for the playoffs on the home field of the team who the Ravens last lost to:

I think more than anything, we are stoked to just get a win regardless of the opponent. Now division games are that much more special. Like you said, we were on the opposite end of where we are today however many weeks ago. For what we are trying to do right now, I do not think it make is any sweeter that we happened to get a win here in Cleveland. I think it just flat-out sweet to get a win on the road in Cleveland, in Pittsburgh, in Cincinnati. These are tough places to play. Always teams that we play close, we play tight. Being able to come in here and get a win, no matter the circumstances, is special, but it is extra special because of everything that has been at stake.”


On kicking today, including towards the Dawg Pound:

“It was a little tough figuring it out in pregame. We did not have any significantly long attempts ourselves today. (Browns K) Austin (Seibert) knocked down that 47-yarder towards the Dawg Pound end which was a hell of a kick. That is a tough ball to hit straight and he did just that. People want to talk about the Dawg Pound in Cleveland. They want to talk about the open end at Heinz Field. I think everybody really should be talking about the whole AFC North. This is the toughest division to make kicks in football. Furthermore, our stadium is the toughest place to make kicks. I have said that for a while now. It is the toughest place to make kicks. People come in and the wind swirls around. I have been here in Baltimore for eight years and I am still trying to figure it out and I do not think I ever will. The key is, like anywhere in the AFC North, the Dawg Pound, the open end at Heinz, the key is to just hit a straight true ball. At a certain point, just trust that you hit a good enough ball and hope it goes through.  We have been fortunate enough to do, many, many times.”


On playing out the regular season knowing the Ravens clinched everything for the playoffs:

“No matter which way you spin it, at the end of the day, you have to come out and play good football regardless of the circumstance. Whether it is the fourth preseason game or a Week 17 where we have already clinched everything postseason-wise.  It is still important to play really good football. I know it is going to be incredibly important to myself, (LS) Morgan Cox, and (P) Sam Koch to come out and do everything we can to step up in a significant way because in all likelihood we are going to see different faces playing next Sunday. Now, I do not know that for sure. It could be the Steelers coming in town and we want to do everything to win this game and roll. No matter which way you spin it, you have to flip a switch and play good football. It does not matter who is out there, we expect to play good football. A couple weeks after that, we are going to do exactly that. Go out and expect to play good football, no matter who is on the field.”


DE Jihad Ward:

On what they did differently compared to Week 4 vs. Cleveland:

“We were just us. We had to find their strength and weakness. There was nothing we really changed, we just had to learn their strength and weakness and execute.”


On what the gameplan was this time around:

“It was the same gameplan, we just wanted to tweak it. Other than that everything was straight. We started off wrinkled a little bit, but we understood it and finished strong.”


On how the Browns beat themselves:

“They had home field advantage. All we did was trust who we trust and that’s the motto, ‘Big Trust’.”


On the frustration on the Browns sideline:

“I don’t know. Whatever they got going on, that’s what they got. We need to worry about what is going on over here. We don’t care about what’s going on over there. All I can say is they better get it together or people are going to start getting fired.”


G/T Marshal Yanda:

On the benefits of clinching home field advantage in the playoffs:

“No. 1, we get that week off to rest and recover. We are a heavy running team so physical games every Sunday. That week of rest is going to be huge. Obviously, playing at home, we don’t have to travel. We don’t have to get on an airplane. We are right in our backyard, that is where we want to be and it is definitely an advantage.”


On the Ravens’ huddle and Ravens QB Lamar Jackson in the huddle today, given the team sustained a few drives without points:

“There was some frustration, but nobody panicked. Obviously, most of the time when we get the ball, we move the ball down the field and at least flip the field. There was no panic. Everybody just wanted to get it right. When we didn’t have a lot of opportunities – we turned the ball over, fourth down and we had a fumble – and it felt like we didn’t have the ball much the first half. Obviously, right before the first half, we really got into a two-minute mode and started making plays. We had a two-play drive and scored. The good thing is we have a lot of talent on this team obviously so once we start making plays, it was like boom, boom touchdown; boom, boom touchdown again. The good thing is that if we start off slow that we will continue to fight and make those plays.”


On the Ravens’ offensive production with both long drives and quick strikes:

“Obviously, you have to do what you need to do to win. We didn’t have a lot of time at the end of the [first] half so we were in the two-minute mode. We executed that great. Obviously, our bread and butter is to possess the clock and to have long, time-eating drives and then score. The good thing is the team that we have, the players we have are playmakers that are making plays like (Ravens TE) Mark Andrews had the touchdown and getting into the end zone. Guys making plays is the biggest difference.”


On how special the Ravens’ regular season has been:

“It is just the best season I have ever been a part of, and this is my 13th year. It is awesome. We have a great team, to win 11 games in a row and to be dominant in a lot of those games, I am grateful to be here and grateful to be a part of this. I love competing, love being out there and it is just a lot of fun. We are here to win, and we are here to get after teams. It has been a lot of fun.”


On the key to transitioning the team’s success into the postseason:

“Focus. I think focus is the No. 1 word. I think the guys need to [focus]. We talked about it the room yesterday as an offensive line where everybody needs to make sure that for the next month of your life that football is No. 1 in your life, that focus needs to be there and that everything else is pushed aside the next month to focus on football, focus on your job. No distractions, let’s lock in and do what we do.”


On the potential for him to not play in Week 17 and have two weeks of rest before the postseason game and philosophies of ‘rest vs. rust’:

“We will figure that out. We don’t know yet. Took care of Cleveland today and that was the main goal. Coach hasn’t said anything to us. We will diagnose that and sift through that when it comes. Right now, I don’t know.”


On Jackson and if his significant impact is almost becoming common place:

“He has definitely been doing consistently for a long time now. He is obviously very special in what he does in space and throwing the football and all of those things. Obviously, we have done it for weeks in a row without really any drag. I know we had some drag in the first quarter into the second quarter, but then, boom, we got hot and he diced them up fast. That has been pretty awesome to watch him do that consistently for that many games. That is hard to do.”


Ravens CB Marlon Humphrey:

On having home field advantage in the AFC: 

“That is pretty big. It is definitely my first time. I guess I could say I was excited.  I have to figure out how it feels. Home field advantage with the Ravens.  I know that is going to give us a big time advantage so I am looking forward to, first, finishing up the regular season next week against the Steelers and then I guess we will figure out what happens next when it comes.”


On the two touchdowns right before halftime: 

“That was huge. I think they were playing pretty tough, offensively and defensively. We scored pretty quick and got above fairly quick. So it was good to see the offense to turn it around that quick and guys were pointing to the board when we went in at halftime.”


On how special the Ravens are: 

“For me, I told the guys this, actually right before we played the Browns, that I am having the most fun that I have ever had playing football. I don’t know if it is just this team, or the guys in the places that we have them. Coming to practice, it is enjoyable coming to work. It is just really enjoyable with these guys. I think we really enjoy each other’s company. I think the best ingredient to winning is how close you are to your teammates, how much are you willing to give up to give your all to the guy next to you. I think you see that the most with the O-line, how they (inaudible) with (QB) Lamar (Jackson). Lamar is (inaudible) as can be and those guys would do anything. Same with defense, we would do anything to put our team in a position to win. I think when you have a whole bunch of guys on the same page, not too many bad apples in the tree, really good things will come from it.”


On the team chemistry of new players in the locker room:

“We are all about helping the new guys when they come in. When these guys come in, we were trying to figure out where they fit in, and they ended up coming in and fitting so well. (DT Domata) Peko (Sr.), honestly Peko is probably the nicest guy I ever met. It’s crazy how nice he is. They were just the perfect character guys to come in for this team. (ILB) Josh Bynes, I tell him he has the most relaxing voice when playing that nickel was pretty new to me. He was helping me getting lined up, and has a very soothing voice to help me out. I think we have a perfect group of guys in there. You have to give it to the (Executive Vice President and General Manager Eric) DeCosta.  The new guys who came in were perfect, and then we traded for (CB) Marcus (Peters) and he gave us a little juice. He’s a real nice guy on our team, not so much to the opponents. Not only do we have great players, but we have great personality guys and they just fit so well with what we already have going on.”


On teams deferring the kickoff to them in recent games:

“I think it has been pretty interesting to see. Normally in football, teams will win the toss and defer, but I guess teams want to start with it. You have got to be confident in what you do, but it hasn’t worked too well so far for them.”


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