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Press Conference

Baker Mayfield: "I think it is an unbelievable opportunity for everybody in this building"

QB Baker Mayfield:

On the 'new normal' at training camp and if it resembles a typical training camp:

"The past few days have been. We are getting into a longer schedule and able to stay here for the meetings at night. It has definitely been different getting to go home at night and sleep at your own house or the guys getting to go home at earlier hours. We are finding our routine, trying to find out what works There are no complaints here. We said as a team, 'the more you complain, the more you are wasting time' so everybody is handling it correctly." 

On how different things are for him personally from this time last season:

"In a much better state mentally. Obviously, physically, I put in the work, like you said. Just ready to roll, attack and get back to where I need to be to be the leader for this team and for this franchise. The reason I got here is because I have been myself and have been able to attack each day with 100 percent effort. Being able to do that and just have the open communication with (Head) Coach (Kevin) Stefanski, (offensive coordinator) Alex Van Pelt and the rest of the staff, we know what we are attacking each and every day. It feels a lot better, and we are taking it one day at a time, as we should." 

On if he feels like he is in better shape physically, given he added four pounds of lean muscle, and what he did to get in better shape physically and mentally:

"My emphasis was definitely cutting out the bad body weight. I think the bigger number was definitely the drop in weight of the bad pounds. That was my emphasis. Diet-wise, I cleaned it up. Had somebody from Elite Nutrition, her name is Angie (Asche), worked with her, and then where I was training with CJ McFarland down in Austin, just had a great team. I think to be at the top of your game, you have to surround yourself by people that are going to push you and elevate you to the highest standards. Did that and did those things, but I think with the long offseason of a lot of online meetings and mental work, I was able to physically get my body health and ready to roll. Take those things in and really work at one thing at a time scheme-wise, focus on studying those things because we were not trying to install and get out on the practice field and run a bunch of plays. We could really take our time with it. I think our staff did an unbelievable job of handling that." 

On examples of how he changed his diet this offseason:

"Being from Texas, I have to have my Mexican food fix. I cut out a lot of that. Just did a lot of healthier versions and more regimented dieting. It is just about being smart on the scheduling. Omelets in the morning. A snack and a shake after the workouts. Just clean eating. A lot of meal prep and stuff like that. My wife, Emily, has done a great job of preparing those dinners so hats off to her. We are both going through the cooking phase right now." 

On if last season was harder on him than he may have wanted to admit and how he is in a better mental state now:

"I wouldn't say it is a 'poor me' type situation. Going and having success all through high school and college and having that standard so high and then the past couple years have been a rollercoaster of emotions and not nearly as much success as I am used to. I would say I lost myself not having that success, not finding out what was working. I tried different ways of trying to have that success, and I didn't find it. I lost myself in that, and I wasn't able to be who I am for these guys on the team. I have told them that, and I told them that if I am not doing that, hold me accountable. Just finding that and getting back to the basics, establish myself in this new system and attack it.." 

On how valuable it was to have Head Coach Kevin Stefanski visit him in February:

"Tremendously valuable in the long run. I think just to get to know each other. The conversations that you can have in the offseason during some of those lighter practices and Phase 1, Phase 2 OTA world. He was able to come down and meet my family. His dad was actually in town scouting for basketball so I actually met his dad, too. It was a good thing for us to establish that relationship, talk about things off the field and just for him to see what I am able and for me to see what he is about. You hear all these things, but until you can sit down and have a conversation with somebody, that is when you truly get to know someone. That is a big value that looking back on I think we will appreciate it." 

On takeaways from the virtual offseason and how it can help him as a leader heading into the season:

"These are unprecedented times we are living in right now. There is no doubt about that. There is no manual or handbook on how to handle these things, but I truly believe the greatest leaders, people you look up to and role models are able to adapt in situations and different variables. Being able to try and handle all the situations and trying to get the most out of our guys because everybody is in a different home life and a different situation, doing these meetings at home, trying to get different workouts in. We saw a bunch of creative ways guys were getting workouts in that people didn't have the same equipment. Trying to connect with those guys and everybody on the staff, as well, to really establish that foundation and to be able to make the long run that we want to but doing it day by day." 

On what it takes to get mentally right:

"First, going into the fourth offense of establishing a good foundation of where our identity is and of what we want to attack and talking to Alex Van Pelt and Coach Stefanski of what we want to be – I know we will not truly know that until we get out there and run plays with pads on and see how that works – but of how we want to attack it to where am I putting my focus in. From there, connecting with guys on the meetings, getting together with them, trying to just see how they are doing and checking on them to be the leader and the quarterback that this team needs. Being myself, getting that alpha mentality back. 2020 has not been real great. Mamba mentality – RIP to Kobe (Bryant), but trying to get that and replicate something similar to what he had to lead these guys to where we want to go." 

On why he felt the need to transform his body and how it will help this year:

"I think there were a lot of plays, looking back on last year, physically I was not able to work out as much being beat up. I was heavier than I was ever playing before at a playing weight. I needed to [make physical changes] to be able to have the scrambling ability and to be able to move in the pocket. Also, with what I talked about with Coach Stefanski and Alex Van Pelt about what we want to do play action-wise and move in the pocket, things that you look at Minnesota's offense of what they did very well, of making sure that I am in the best shape possible. That is my job to be in prime physical shape to show up and do my job on Sundays. That was definitely a key factor in that and being back. Look good, feel good, play good." 

On if he ever doubted himself during the past two 'rollercoaster' seasons:

"Absolutely. I think that that is one of those things that I talked about with our team is you have to find that belief and you have to find that confidence within yourself. That is what I have based my whole story on and my whole career on is confidence in myself and taking those chances. There were times, and these guys know that everybody has their moments. You can't just hold onto yourself. You have to have people to lean on, and we have those guys here." 

On if he feels that everything is in place for him and the team this season, given offseason acquisitions and changes both from the coaching and player standpoint and the opportunity for him with it, as well as if he 'relishes' in the fact some people will doubt him and the team:

"Absolutely, I think it is an unbelievable opportunity for everybody in this building. With the moves that we have made, the pieces we brought in and the culture that is being built right now, I think we are really excited to get out there and show that of what we have been building behind the scenes. I am extremely excited about that. The doubt and all that, I expect it considering what has been going on with going from Year 1 with having some success to last year of what we thought was going to be and it wasn't. It is what it is. It is nothing new to me, and our guys are ready to get out there and prove what we have been doing this offseason because that is all that matters is this year. We have a new team, a new staff and we are ready to roll." 

On stating he would kneel for the National Anthem, some people responding negatively to it and if he has any regrets about saying it:

"I do not have any regrets. I think being in my position, which is a blessing, being out on a platform to where I can speak on issues that are just wrong. Right is right, and wrong is wrong. There is a human rights issue that has been going on for a long time, and I believe in that. It is nothing against military or anybody who served. Anybody that knows my history knows that I completely support military and the people that serve our country for the right reasons and do it for justice. The people that do not know that, that is OK – just take your time and take a second to get to know me. It is a human rights issue. There is right, and there is wrong." 

On how the new coaching staff and offense fits him well:

"Scheme-wise, I think my attributes match up to what they want to do. Not only that, I think it matches up to our team and the people they have brought in. Our whole offense, just mentality-wise, culture-wise and of a no BS policy, you are going to know exactly what we want to do and you are expected to do it. It is just a being adult type thing. Handle your business, and we will have success and we will have fun doing it. I think there are things that we are doing within the building and within our online meetings that are ahead of the game and ahead of the curve. Hats off to our staff for being able to get those guys and making these moves to where we really feel like we are in a true training camp, even though it is a little different. We are having a lot of fun with making the most of it so hats off to those guys."

Check out photos of the team practicing on Thursday

WR Jarvis Landry:

On how he feels, how close he is to 100 percent and at what point will he not be constrained at all during practice:

"I feel really good. I feel good. We have put together a great plan that is going to gradually work me back into normal practice schedule and normal everything. As of now, we have a good plan going forward, and I am excited."

On if he will practice today and during the first padded practice on Monday:

"Like I said, it is a gradual ramp up. I have been practicing. I have been out there. I have been doing individual and things like that. As we move more toward team periods, offense versus defense, those will be more of the periods I work into a little bit slower, but that is also something that is the next step for my transition in being 100 percent."

On his impressions of QB Baker Mayfield and what it means to have Mayfield come in fit, ready to go and his mindset:

"It means everything. He is the leader of our team. He will continue to be the leader of our team. His attitude towards this season is at a heightened level. It is fun to see him out here. It is fun to see him doing the things he loves with a smile on his face and making plays already. It is good to have him in the building and working with him."

On how challenging the year has been for him with rehab and trying to get back to where he needs to be, in addition to other challenges this year:

"It has been very difficult. It has been very difficult being that this is my first major surgery ever and quarantine hits and everybody is stuck in the house for a month, two months before I could actually get back to someone getting their hands on me as far as doctors and the treatment that I needed. It was very difficult. A lot more went into it being more than just a physical thing, also mental. I am here now. I am at a stage where I am very close. I am so close to being where I know I can be in order to be able to go out there and help this team."

On launching the Jarvis Landry Building Winners Foundation and his statement that it was part of him reevaluating his role and his role in the communities that shaped him:

"I think reevaluating it to me looks more like being present – being present, being in those neighborhoods, being in neighborhoods back home, being in neighborhoods in Cleveland, being in neighborhoods, as well, in Miami where I played prior to being here in Cleveland – and not just feeling like by giving school supplies away or having food drives and things like that are enough. Obviously, that is something that is a need in the areas that I have played a part in, but I think just being present and making sure that I am there, making sure that my face is seen and making sure I am more accessible to the public."

On how different it feels in the building this year and how strange it will be without fans at training camp:

"It is the new norm. For us, we are not really paying attention to it. There are a lot of logistics going on from getting into the building to the things that you have to do as far as protocols and things like that. For us, the team has done an amazing job, and for us, every guy has done an amazing job of just abiding by that. Having the opportunity to come out here and step on the field and practice is something that we have been waiting a long time to do. We missed OTAs so we have an opportunity now to be able to come out here, and that is the fun part of it all."

On how different he expects WR Odell Beckham Jr. and him to play this year after playing with injuries last season that required surgery this offseason:

"For us, it is an ongoing process. Staying healthy in this league is really hard to do for anybody. I think for us, it is an ongoing process to stay healthy. The more we can do that and have our attention and focus on being healthy, the more plays we can go out there and eventually make. It will come with being healthy and getting opportunities."

On how Beckham and QB Baker Mayfield look early in training camp:

"Both of those guys look great. It is an ongoing process in this league of trying to stay healthy and trying to remain healthy. It is really tough to do. Both of those guys have been staying on top of the little things that I know they have bene working on in the offseason just from communicating back and forth. They have still been working on those things inside the building. That is going to allow them to be out there on the field playing as freely and as healthy as possible. I am excited to see what they are going to bring and what they are going to do, and do my part to help them."

On how to keep playmakers happy when the team is divvying up touches:

"In reality, we just do what it takes to win, whether the ball is in the air or the ball is on the ground. There is nothing like having options, and some teams do not have as many as we do. We understand that, but we also understand that having as many options as we do have, if you look at last year's season, it only got us what? Six games winning. We have to find a way to put it together as players and play together, play for each other, no matter who is getting the ball, no matter who is not getting the ball, and create this unselfish system that we will need to win. Put the pieces together at the right times. I am excited to see what this year brings."

On how the team can create an unselfish system, given playmakers always want the ball:

"That is the beauty of it. You have guys that are chomping at the bit in a sense for an opportunity or for a chance. I think we all have to realize as players that one man can't win the game, either. It is going to come down to other guys making plays and trusting that those guys are going to make plays and trusting that if the ball goes that way, then that is where it is supposed to go. For us, regardless of if that is an easy thing to handle or a hard thing to handle, if we want to win games and we want to be successful, we are going to have to have that type of attitude and mentality. It is just that simple. There is only one football."

On if he feels Beckham has 'bought in more' than at the start of last season following the trade:

"He is continuing to grow. He is continuing to grow each and every day, each and every week. That is something that being here and being around the guys over time that gives you. You begin to get comfortable. You begin to be where your feet are. I think that he is really making this place home and accepting that. That is something that, I know for me personally, I am happy that he is here and hopefully can continue to be here for the rest of his career."

On ow Stefanski has been like now that they can be together in person:

"He has been cool. Everything that he has been on the Zoom meetings, he hasn't changes since guys have gotten into the building. Again, one thing that you talk to any player around the league that they want from the guy that is calling the shots is honesty, communication and trust – somebody that you can trust. I think he has earned the trust of a lot of guys, this whole team, this whole building and this whole staff. I am excited to see where we go from here."

On if there is any concern that there will be hiccups once games start with a first-year head coach:

"Even if you have been coaching for 20 years, there are going to be hiccups. That is just something that comes with the game. That is the biggest thing, like I said, is just the trust factor and the communication factor. I really respect him because he does not hold anything back. Anything that he has on his mind I feel like needs to be said or addressed, he will, even if he makes a mistake. That is something that every man when he can look in the mirror and call out his flaws, as well, is something that is important."

On if the Browns can be the 'surprise team' this year, given the team was a popular pick to be successful last season:

"I don't know about that. I feel like everybody in the NFL understands that it is hard to win in the NFL no matter how much talent you have. I don't want to refer to last year now that we have passed that. At the end of the day, I feel like it is about us buying in. It is not about what the expectations of anybody outside of this building has for us. It is for us as a Cleveland Brown team as a club to figure out what that is going to be, who we are going to be, what our identity is going to be and how people will address us. That is something that we have to take to heart and go out there and work on that practice field each and every day to go out there and prove it on Sunday."

On if it was easy or hard to get last season out of his mind:

"It was easy. When you lose, it is cornerback mentality from that point on. Last year is in the past."

On his thoughts on Mayfield saying he would kneel for the national anthem:

"Obviously, everybody hopefully recognizes the problem and understands that there is a problem that is going on. From a professional athlete standpoint, we understand our platform, and being able to use that on the biggest stage is something that can continue to keep conversations going, continue to raise awareness and continue to call things out. Much respect to him for that. Like I told him, I texted him and I told him respect for that."

S Grant Delpit:

On how he feels about his role, fitting in with the Browns defense and having several former LSU players on the team:

"It is great to have a lot of LSU guys in one place. It makes me feel at home, and of course, the best school in the country so you can't go wrong with that. As far as my role goes, I am just playing it day by day. Playing the position (defensive coordinator) Coach (Joe) Woods put me in and (Head) Coach (Kevin) Stefanski. Doing a great job so far. Today will be the first day we go against the offense, kind of full-speed tempo. I am excited for it." 

On if it is better for him to focus on one role during his rookie season rather than having more versatility with positions, particularly due to changes to this past offseason and training camp due to COVID-19:

"For my rookie year, like I said, we are having a great season. I am not too worried about not having a season or anything like that. I am just ready to fir in wherever Coach Woods and Coach Stefanski put me to be honest. I am not really worried about the exact spot that I need to make an impact at. I am just ready to fit into the defensive scheme, and we are installing that right now."

On how difficult it is for rookies to not have an in-person offseason or preseason games this year:

"I do not know how it is supposed to go in the NFL. I know there is supposed to be a preseason, but in college, we did not have one. I know the NFL is definitely the next level so I am doing everything I can do to prepare for it. Of course, I would want to have some preseason games to kind of get in the swing of things, but we think on our feet and that is why we are out there, that is why we are here and that is why I am here. I am ready to go."

On if there has been an extra emphasis on preparing rookies for Week 1:

"Definitely. (Special teams coordinator) Coach (Mike) Priefer just brought it up yesterday and said that it is a month until the first game, if I am not mistaken. It is going to come around fast. It is right around the corner. We are doing everything we can to look at the Ravens now and also install. We have not installed yet. We are going at warp speed."

On what he did to prepare during the time between the draft and arriving in Berea, given the virtual offseason program:

"I got healthy. That was the No. 1 thing I had to do is get all the way 100 percent. I was able to do that, and I was also working out every day. There was nothing else to do. Working out every day and trying to get right because I know once we get here, it will be full speed 100 percent. I was able to do that and get my body right, and I am great."

On if he has made any bets with CB Greedy Williams about what they can accomplish this season or whose stats will be higher:

"No, I am sure I can make some happen, though. I haven't set anything up yet. It will probably start in practice, see who can make the most plays in practice and go from there. No, we haven't started anything yet. Thanks for the idea, though (laughter)."

On if he has a good feel for how defensive coordinator Joe Woods will use him in the defense:

"How he wants to use me? I have no idea. That is Coach Woods' question for himself, but in our defense, we have a strong and free safety. They are also interchangeable, so it is best to know both positions. That is what I am doing right now. Just fit in wherever he wants me to. I do not know the answer to that one."

On his impressions of QB Baker Mayfield and if he has had many interactions with him:

"I was kind of bragging about the OU game a little bit, but no, we have not really talked that much. I know that when this competition comes around, I will probably be his worst enemy on the defensive side (laughter). I will just try to irritate him and get everybody better. That is what it is all about, competition. I know Baker is the ultimate competitor so that is exactly what you need in a quarterback. We are just going to push each other every day."

On if Mayfield is what he expected him to be:

"Yeah, I always knew he was a hell of a player. He looks the part, too. I know he is going to have a great season this year, his third year in the league. He is what I thought he would be, and I hope he is even more. I hope he is throwing dimes, but not on me, though. We will see how that works."

On LB Jacob Phillips:

"We call Jacob 'Rockhead.' We called Jacob 'Rockhead' at LSU because his head is shaped like a rock, but he will come down and hit hard too so we call him 'Rock.' You will have to bring that up next time you all talk to him (laughter). Scouting report on him, great tackler. His voice is high, but he is built up and rocked up so I think he is going to do great things. He is definitely a hard-hitting linebacker, a leader on that defensive side for those guys. I am excited to see what he has to offer in this defense that we are running."

On if Phillips can make an immediate impact:

"No doubt."

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