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Press Conference

Browns OC Todd Haley press conference - 10/18

On how much more 'guilty' QB Baker Mayfield was of taking shots downfield rather than hitting checkdowns:

"I would not say guilty. I would say that it is all a part of the process. Some of the holding of the football is part of the process. That is why it is a fine line when you are coaching these guys. You do not want to coach out the aggressiveness, but at the same time, he is in the process of learning that No. 1 at this level, guys are not going to be wide open ever. It is going to be the process of putting the ball into tight places and knowing when it is too tight. I think that was a big time game. Unfortunately, it came at the expense of us as a team but of growing and learning and learning what this is all about. By no means am I saying that the reason we had a bad performance was all on Baker, but he was a part of it, along with the entire group."

On if the Chargers played more zone coverage than expected:

"No, I do not think we saw more zone than expected. There were just plenty of opportunities where the ball could have come out quick. There were plenty of opportunities where a safer decision could have been made. That is the way that it goes. It was a tough game, but how we respond to that, how he (Mayfield) responds to a game like that is very, very critical. I told the whole group, a loss is a loss, whether it is by one point, 30 points or whatever it was. It is about how you respond to it. It was one game of 16. It is one we would all like to have back, but we can't. It is a game that you have to learn from and bounce back, knowing that game can't and won't determine the outcome of our season."

On how to help Mayfield select checkdown options:

"Just coach him. That along with understanding – I think the biggest learning that can come out of that game is that guys are not going to be as open as you want them to be. Then it is on him to make the decisions. You can save a lot of pain and suffering with that ball coming out quick to your first read. It is not going to always look perfect, but he is a good enough thrower that he is quite capable of putting the ball where it needs to go. We have had a good week thus far of taking that tape, breaking it down and really trying to grow from it."

On if overthinking options is contributing to Mayfield holding onto the ball:

"That is a part of the process. When you are coming off of the bench, as difficult of a situation that it was, as we talked about in here, you did not have time to think about a lot. I think you saw him be a natural player. Get it out. Sometimes when you are the starter, you are taking every rep and you are looking at the tape, the tendency can be to overanalyze – paralysis by analysis. That is what we are working hard on not doing."

On if Mayfield was pressing against the Chargers:

"I think that we both learned a lot during a game like that. I have to be very mindful of his personality and some of his tendencies and be very thoughtful from a play-calling standpoint, especially in some of the situational football you are in the fringe. We had a lot of opportunities in the early part of that game to have a chance of making it go a lot better than it did. We missed opportunities, obviously. We had a deep ball opportunity to (WR) Antonio (Callaway), which a slight technique error by Antonio that he can grow from probably cost us seven points which would have been a huge play for us. A lot of things in that game that very easily could have gone the other way. Next time up, we have to make them go the other way as best as we can. The group came out ready to go. They played hard. We just did not execute, and it fell on everybody's shoulders."

On transitions at WRs and a need for younger players to produce:

"That has been my line for a couple of weeks now. We have to have guys step in and step up. We do not need them to be superheroes. We just need them to just do their job. I give (WR Damion) Ratley a lot of credit. The timing of the injuries, (WR Derrick) Willies going down on a Friday after taking all of the reps. We kind of had the jobs spread out amongst (WR) Rod (Streater), Ratley and Antonio. Now, Rod goes down the first special teams play. Ratley was forced into a role and 11 (Callaway) was forced into roles of playing a lot of snaps and running a lot of plays that they maybe did not necessarily get the reps. That is the game of football, though. We can't cry about it and whine about it because that becomes complaining and all that hurts is us. That is like complaining to somebody about something that they can't help you with. Other people are glad that you have the problems."

On keeping WR Jarvis Landry from getting overly frustrated and focused on the game when facing challenges from opposing defenses:

"We have a lot of good conversations. It is very hard for a guy that is the guy, so to speak, and gets a lot of opportunities. The most important thing with Jarvis is that he is one of the leaders of our team, and as frustrating as some things may be, there are things that he cannot control and he has to continue to be a leader for us and go out and take every snap as if it is the most important play of the game because it could be and be ready for his opportunities and maximize those opportunities. Like I said, he did not do it, but nobody else did it either, including us as coaches."

On determining whether or not to use more multiple TE and RB packages:

"It is all a part of the process of getting ready for a game and adjusting within a game. When you practice with the few practice reps we get during a week, it is hard to make an all-out adjustment in game. Some of those things are a lot tougher than maybe they seem, but that is all taken into account, especially when you have time to deal with it as we do this week."

On WR Da'Mari Scott's readiness to contribute:

"He is been working really hard. Like I said, I was proud of Ratley. The spotlight went on him, and he had to step in and play a lot of snaps and like I said, running plays that he necessarily did not get physical reps doing. He is another great example. I hope that does not put the kibosh on him. This is a young group, a young group across the board. What I have stressed to the entire group is the guys that have been playing –I am not saying the veteran guys because we have a lot of guys playing that are still young guys, rookies second year, third year – have to be a stabilizing force for the guys that are now just playing, getting their first reps for some of them of their NFL career. We need that stabilizing force. That means even though Antonio may be a young guy, he has to be a stabilizing force for Ratley, Scott or (WR Breshad) Perriman , who just got here and is trying and working like heck to learn and understand what his potential role is. It is all very good learning for a young group. If we can make the most of it and grow from it, we will have a chance to get something done."

On if he shares what he sees from Buccaneers QB Jameis Winston with the Browns defense:

"There is so little time for that. We are each worrying about our side of the ball and trying to do our best to prepare our guys to play. If there is a unique connection, there can be some conversation, but we have our heads down and we are grinding trying to have our guys ready."

On if Winston is difficult to take down similarly to Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger:

"Who? Jameis? I am worried about our offense. Did work on him obviously coming out. He is a good young player. I hope he throws it to us."

On the Browns scoring six points in the first quarter:

"We have had a lot of discussions amongst coaches, myself and the quarterbacks on how we can best get started in a better fashion. Last week, I thought we were set up to start very well. We had the early jump by them. We had a big play to (TE David) Njoku right out of the gate and moved the chains. That is always a good thing to get an early completion. We got them to jump offside on the next play. Our mode is to sit in there and not be happy with the five yards and to get the ball down the field. A young player in (OL) Desmond (Harrison) responded to their movements so we got a five-yard gain out of it. Things were moving in the right direction, and then again it came down to execution. Third-down situational plays, we have to make plays, and we take a sack on the very first third down when we go into that game with one of our goals to protect the quarterback to get the ball out. That made for a tough start, but then you had some of the injury situations. That is the NFL. That is the way it goes. The teams that are able to respond in those difficult situations and continue to move the football and make plays are the ones that have a chance to be pretty good. That is what we are looking for this week is to see a group that has responded a bunch to adversity do it again."

On if he scripts the opening plays and if the team works on those plays all week:

"Yeah, we have worked on all of the plays all week, but those specifically, we have put in extra time. They know ahead of time what we are going to run and how we are going to run it. That is part of the discussions that I alluded to. We have opened the game in no-huddle as we did last week. We have opened the game running the football. We need to do a better job as a group, and I am pointing the thumb at myself of figuring out a way to execute early. That has been a common theme. We have been in position to execute early and for one reason or another have not. We have to continue to work hard trying to figure out the best way to get this thing started because I have told the offense very clearly this week that we need to do something to get the Browns going early. We can't wait around and wait for somebody else to do it – for (DL) Myles Garret to make a big sack-fumble or something like that. We have to do it. That is the charge this week and looking to see our guys respond."

On if Mayfield has been different this week from a competitiveness standpoint following last week's loss:

"He has been pretty even-keel, which I think is a good sign. He is all business and looking for ways that he can be better. He understands that he has to be better than last week to get us and him where we need to go. The response is what is critical. Bad plays, bad games are going to happen. It is how you respond to those situations that is critical. As (former Browns Head Coach) Sam Rutigliano told me one time, 'Sometimes the responses to the crisis is more important than the crises itself.' I do not think I said that right (laughter)."

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