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Browns player quotes - 11/25


QB Austin Davis:**

On if he has been more involved in the offense during practice this week:

"I guess it's been two weeks that I've been the No. 2 so t doesn't really matter who the starter is. You still have to prepare the same way, and I've been through it before."

On if he is itching to play in a game for the first time since the preseason with the Rams:

"Oh, absolutely. You don't play the game not to play, if you will. At the same time, I want (QB) Josh (McCown) to stay healthy and play well. I think the environment of a quarterback room works better when you root for one another and you hope the other guy plays well, and he encourages you and you encourage him. That's just how I see things and that's how I approach it."

On if his role has changed since becoming the No. 2 QB:

"Yeah, it's a different feel. You do have to get into a routine – however that is, every player is different – you get in a routine of how you prepare and how you feel best for a game. It doesn't really matter if you're the two or the three; you don't get reps anyway. The only difference is you're one play away from going in rather than two or potentially being inactive on gameday. It's really the same thing."

On his comfort level with the Browns offense:

"I feel good with what we're doing. I've been here long enough to have an understanding of what we're doing. I've done everything I can up to this point to learn it and to understand it. It's different than if I would have played Week 2 or Week 3. To me, the expectation is to have a complete understanding of what we're doing, and I've tried to put in the extra time to do that because you don't ever want these types of situation to come up, but they do."

On if the dynamic of the QB room has changed based on recent events:

"No, I wouldn't say that. We're all trying to help one another, whether that's football or whether that's life. I think that's the neat thing about Josh is he's a great leader and not just football. He kind of set the tone for that room, him and (quarterbacks) Coach Kevin (O'Connell). It's been a good environment since Day 1. I've gotten that question a lot, and I've really enjoyed the time and I think we're trying to encourage one another and all be better."

WR Brian Hartline:

On what it means to play on Monday Night Football:

"It's awesome. That's like growing up, you sit and you watch Monday Night Countdown and everything else. Every year, it never gets old. It's really a blessing to play in this league and play on this stage."

On memories playing on Monday Night Football:

"Not in particular. I recall more some Thanksgiving games that I played in Miami, in Dallas. That's another one – it's like Dallas and Detroit every year – it's a pretty awesome honor."

On his reaction to the recent starting QB change:

"No reaction. To me, I play with both guys."

On if the starting QB change matters:

"It always matters because it's the quarterback position, but overall, like I said, we have two guys that are really capable of playing good football. Our 2-8 record is – QB positions not the reason why we are 2-8. They both played pretty well."

On if there is more to the Manziel situation than the public knows, as OL Joe Thomas stated:

"I'm just saying that it's an in-house thing that spills outside because (QB) Johnny (Manziel) is Johnny. The people in the locker room and the people upstairs know the whole story, how they feel about the whole situation. It's not just what – what did (OL) Joe (Thomas) say? On the surface, it's not always the whole case, but regardless, moving forward, Johnny had a great practice today. He's not going to let it slow him down. Sometimes, you have to take one step backward to go four or five steps forward, and that could be the case."

On how injuries to WR Andrew Hawkins and WR Taylor Gabriel have impacted his workload:

"It's unfortunate. Both those guys bring a lot to the table, and losing both those guys, it's hard to replace. We'll try to do our best, but we look forward to having them back."

DL Danny Shelton:

On if his play has been better as he has been getting freed up recently:

"Yeah, definitely, mentally and physically I have been able to focus up and be able to play."

On frustration with his stats, which haven't been up to his standards:

"It is super frustrating. You want to be that guy, that guy for the team. You want to be able to represent for your community, your fans and your family. You can't let outside noises get to you. That is what my problem was in the beginning of the season. Now, it is more like playing ball and striving to be 6-0 at the end the season."

On how outside noises affected him:

"Mostly social media, being up to date with tweets and Instagram. You have no choice, but to see those comments, and it is more for me going on with my life and continuing to play ball. There is nothing I can do through social media."

On if he set personal goals this season:

"Yeah, definitely. Everybody does that. In the beginning of the season, you want to set a goal for yourself. It was tough. I didn't think the rookie year would be as tough as I thought going into the season. I thought I would be able to make plays, contribute to the team and produce and represent for the team easily, but obviously, it has gone a different way. Now, it is just focusing on becoming 6-0."

On turning around the season:

"Our team coming together, being able to work through negativity and adversity and just being able to play for each other."

On playing on Monday Night Football:

"It is going to be awesome. I am marking the things that I have accomplished – Thursday Night Football, hopefully we will get a Sunday Night Football. When you are growing up and watching the sport and being a fan of the sport, you never realize that you get these opportunities. It is going to be a big opportunity for me."

On if playing on Monday Night Football brings extra excitement to the game for two teams that aren't in the playoff picture:

"It is a long season. It is going to show you where you are going into next season. If we are able to pull off this 6-0 for the rest of the season, we will be able to see a better picture of where we are going to be next year."

On his most difficult transition:

"I'd say the mental part of the game. Trying to do too much. Trying to play for the team and play for the fans. It is more of just kind of being selfish now and being able to play for yourself and finish these games. That is what I am concentrating on the rest of this season. To work with these guys and continue to grow."

OL Joe Thomas:

On the QB situation:

"It's been interesting obviously, but judging by the reaction in the locker room, I think we support coach's decision. In the end, players don't make decisions on who plays. It's up to the coaches and the other members of the organization, and we support Coach's (Head Coach Mike Pettine) decision."

On some fans' belief that Manziel lost the starting job for trivial reasons:

"I'll let coach Pettine dig into the justification, but I think it's probably more than just what you see on the surface from a TMZ report or whatever report. Like I said, we support coach's decision, and I'll let him dig into the details of why he made the decision that he made."

On his trust in Manziel:

"I can only grade him and evaluate him on the work that he does in the building, and he's been doing a great job. All season he's been doing the right things, he's been doing his homework, he's showing up or work on time, working hard. When he gets his opportunities, he's made the most of them. What happens off the field is between him and the coach or whoever else, and I can only assess what I see when he's in this building because I didn't spend the weekend in Austin so can't really talk about that."

On the locker room reaction to the QB change:

"Talking to guys, I think everyone supports coach's decision. When the decision was made in the first place to go with Johnny, I think everybody still felt really confident in (QB) Josh (McCown). It wasn't like Josh lost his job. We think he's been doing a great job all season. It was more a matter of trying to give Johnny some more time to improve himself, prove what type of a quarterback he can be. I think he slipped up a little bit, and the decision has made by the coach. Overall, everybody respects that decision."

On if he is disappointed in Manziel:

"I can't think like that. I can only judge him by what I see when I show up to work, and I thought he did a good job at practice today."

On if it has been hard for Manziel to handle losing the starting QB job:

"Well I'm sure he's disappointed that he lost his job, but I'm not going to speak for Johnny. Definitely, if I was a starter and I lost my job, I'd be disappointed, based on something that I did."

On if he would be nervous about Manziel having another incident if he were to work his way back to the starting position:

"That's a lot to think about. I've got a small brain and I'm very simple minded (laughter). I just try to block the guy that lines up across from me."

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