Browns player press conferences - 8/2


DL Desmond Bryant:**

On if it takes time to adjust to the training camp schedule after missing last season or if it is not as challenging because of his NFL experience:

"Like you said, I have been doing camp for a long time. This is nothing new to me out here (laughter). The first day in shoulder pads was the other day so that was a good feeling."

On the toughest part of last year:

"Not playing. It is just something I have done for so long. It has been such a huge part of my life for forever it seems like. Not being able to be out there was brutal."

On watching the Browns struggle last year and not being able to contribute due to injury:

"It was tough to watch. I wish I could have been in there and help out my guys and help to get a few more Ws, but that is what I'm here to do now."

On being used to overcoming adversity:

"That is part of this game. You learn at a young age that adversity is part of football. You are never going to have a perfect game. You just have to learn when you have your defeats and you have your losses, you learn to bounce back from them."

On the mental component of overcoming a significant injury:

"My injury is behind me now. Mentally, getting prepared for these games is just getting myself ready to go. We have a little over a month now until we play the Steelers. It takes a lot to be ready for that. That is why we have training camp, and we are out here every day trying to get better mentally and physically."

On competition on the DL:

"There is a great level of competition on the D line. There are a lot of guys in that room right now and there are only so many positions available on the 53-man roster. From top to bottom, everybody has been going out every day and competing for a job."

On DL Danny Shelton's development from his rookie year:

"Danny always had great habits. Even as a rookie, he really treated his game like a pro. You see growth in that. He had great habits, but now he is doing more and more things. He is being more vocal. He is being more of a leader. It is great to see him transition like that, especially on the field. He has settled down a little bit. I think in college, he was a little bit more of a raw, physical talent. He is really learning the game. He is really going to help us all out in the long run."


LB Christian Kirksey:**

On the biggest difference in this year's defense under defensive coordinator Gregg Williams:

"A lot of guys out there running around, playing fast. It gives you a chance to not think about too much. He coaches with aggression. He is putting guys in the best position to win. He kind of takes your physicality and what you are able to do personally and kind of translates that to what position you might be playing on the field. He just allows you to go out there and not think and just have fun and play fast."

On DL Desmond Bryant returning from injury last season:

"It means a lot. He is one of our team leaders. Just to see him running around out there making plays and just seeing the type of talent that he has throughout the years of playing with the Browns, he is definitely a key player for us. It feels good to see one of your guys come back and have a good time."

On if Bryant is embracing he opportunity and his comments about playing each snap as if it were his last, especially after missing last season due to injury:

"Yeah, he is embracing it. He is extremely humble. I can only imagine sitting out a year of playing football, especially when it is something that you love to do, but I see him out here and he is working hard, whether it is in the classroom or in the weight room just being that leader. He is not going to say too much. He is not really a vocal guy like that, but his play speaks for itself. He is out here having fun and I am extremely happy that he is back out here making plays."

On if Head Coach Hue Jackson seems different this year:

"He is the same guy. He was the same guy last year and same guy when I met him. He is always full of energy, just trying to lift us up any way that he can. That is just Hue all the way."

On the biggest personal challenges transitioning to a new defense:

"Obviously, just going from a 3-4 to a 4-3 is different in the scheme and what we do, but I am asked to do the same thing – just go out there and try to make as many plays as possible. Playing alongside (LBs) Tank Carder and Jamie Collins (Sr.), we are forming a great chemistry together as a unit and as a defense. For me, I am just being at the right place at the right time, trying to be a vocal leader and trying to be a guy that leads by example. I wouldn't say my role really has changed as far as playing linebacker and trying to be the vocal leader. Obviously, the plays are new and it is a different scheme so I am still adjusting to that."

On LB Tank Carder having the opportunity to step into a role as starting MLB, given his history as a special-teams standout:

"I am excited, man. I am excited to see Tank finally get that opportunity to go out there and be that linebacker that I know he can be. He is a great special teams player for us. His track history of being a special teams guys, he has been out there making plays on that level. Just to give him a chance to go out there and play linebacker, which we all know Tank Carder, when he was in college, he was Rose Bowl MVP and things like that so he has all the talent in the world to go out there and make plays. I am extremely happy for him to get that chance to show guys what he can do. I have full belief in Tank that he is going to get the job done."


DB Jabrill Peppers:**

On his first training camp:

"Everyone is progressing. We are all vying for a spot. That is the way we want it. That is the way they want it. I think it is going pretty well."

On if he is surprised he hasn't worked much with the first team yet:

"Not really. Like I said, I didn't really come in with expectations. You get what you put out. The thing I'm going to do is continue to work hard and continue to show them what I can do. The tape doesn't lie. If you put good things on tape, good things are going to happen to you. That is what my mindset is going to be."

On if the Orange & Brown Scrimmage is an opportunity to capture the coaching staff's attention:

"I take every opportunity to capture their attention. It all starts out here in practice. It starts out here with your preparation. Friday night is just a game-like setting. It is no different than a practice. To answer your question, yes, I look at it as an opportunity."

On Head Coach Hue Jackson saying he will play in many ways and the challenge of learning multiple areas:"Just taking whatever they throw at me. I take everything as a challenge. I'm going to show that not only am I physical enough or fit enough to handle it, but also I have the wits, too. I try to just be as well rounded and know as much as I possibly can to be used in any kind of way. That is my goal for the season."

On how to ensure he is not a jack-of-all-trades and a master of none:

"That is what you guys say. I know what I can do. I'm just going to continue to be the best player that I can be."

On qualities of a good punt returner:

"The first quality is you have to be able to catch a punt. You have to be able to judge the ball in any condition – wind, rain, snow. You have to have instincts. In this league, some punters will tilt one way and lean the other way. You have to be able to make the first guy miss. I think the most important thing besides catching the ball is saving field position. Get to every ball, but if you really feel that you can't get it or that it would be an extremely tough catch, then you have to be smart. I feel like the most important job as a punt returner is to save field position."


OL JC Tretter:**

On if he does anything different in attempt to avoid injuries:

"Nothing. I think it causes more problems if you start thinking about it too much. All of them have been freaky, contact injuries where no matter who was in that position, it was going to happen. I think if you get stuck thinking about that or changing what you do, all it is going to do is cause you to worry about it and you are not going to play fast. That is what you need to do out there. I have not changed my mentality at all."

On not thinking about 'freak injuries':

"You just need to understand that this is a contact sport. This is a physical sport. Things like that are going to happen. I have had my unlucky breaks so far, but you just need to play football. That is what you are out there to do. You are not going to play up to your potential if you are worried about injuries."

On the intellectual components of playing C:

"It is a huge part of the position. It is a huge part of the job description. A lot of it is taking the onus off the rest of the guys. You need to come up there, and my job is to come up there and make sure everybody knows what they are doing, who they got. That way, they can play fast. If they are not up there trying to piece together the picture, if you can go up there and tell them what they are looking at, all of a sudden, they can just go up and play football. That is when you get a team playing fast and doing what they are supposed to be doing."

On the transition of playing with Packers QB Aaron Rodgers, compared to a rookie QB:

"I don't see it as any different. Our job is to protect forever on pass plays and give him as much time as possible. On run plays, it is to move the ball. Obviously, it is only going to help when you can put a run game out there that produces ahead of schedule downs for players. I don't look at whoever is back there. Whether it is a future Hall of Famer, a rookie a Wildcat quarterback, whoever is back there, our job to open up wholes for the run game and protect for as long as we can."

On the importance of the QB-C relationship:

"It is really important. The center is the quarterback of the offensive line. I try to talk to all of the quarterbacks as much as possible about different calls, about different things that I am seeing and about what my first thought is to see if we are on the same page just so we can play fast and move things along. I try to talk to each one of them every day just to try to get everybody on the same page. 'Hey, what is your first thought on this check?' That way I can just try and take some things off of his mind where if he knows, 'OK, JC has got it. I can worry about the next thing because he will be on the same page as me before I have to say anything.' That just makes his job easier."

On the competition at right tackle:

"They are both playing great honestly. I think they both come out excited about the opportunity that they have. They are both playing physical, playing hard. It is exciting to watch. Each day, you go in there and both of those guys, whoever is in there, are making huge blocks on that back side. It has been a joy to watch."

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