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Browns player quotes - 8/15

Included below are select quotes from interviews with the following Browns players during today's media availability:

  • OL Joel Bitonio
  • WR Josh Gordon
  • QB Robert Griffin III (full transcript)
  • WR Andrew Hawkins
  • LB Emmanuel Ogbah

OL Joel Bitonio:

On how the OL performed in the first preseason game:

"Definitely some stuff to work on. The first group got maybe 11 plays so we didn't really get into a huge rhythm. On some of the runs, there was a chance. (RB) Duke (Johnson Jr.) broke one, and he probably could've gone for 30 or 40 (yards) if we would've made one more block on that. On one of the ones Crow (RB Isaiah Crowell) got tackled for a loss, there was some good blocking but one or two guys. It is the O-line just trying to get our form back and (OL) John (Greco) has been out for a while, (OL) Austin (Pasztor) just moved to right tackle so they're just working together and (OL) Cam (Erving) was out for a little bit so we're all just working together and kind of putting that group back together. For the first game, there were a lot of positives and definitely stuff we need to work on and we're trying to work on to get ready for Atlanta this week." On playing his first game since his injury last season:

"It felt great. It was fun to be back out there. Cool stadium, Lambeau (Field) was nice and to be out there and play and me and (OL) Joe (Thomas) got some double teams and got to work on some pass protection stuff. It feels like old days again."

On Pasztor's performance at RT:

"I thought he fought hard. I thought he did some really good things. I think everybody had some technical things. Once you get into the game, it kind of speeds up again so you're kind of rushing. Your technique kind of goes out the door a little bit sometimes. He was playing really hard and he knew what he was doing. There were some technical things where he can do this a little better or this a little better, and I think that's just going to come with more reps at tackle."

On if it was frustrating to battle an injury last season:

"Super frustrating. I injured my same ankle twice, same injury pretty much back to back. The whole season my rookie year, we went 7-9 and last year we went 3-13. We were in the hunt my first year and then last year it was kind of over once I got hurt. It was definitely something that you're like, 'Man.' My rookie year went so well and you take it for granted, almost. Now you come back and I worked my tail off this offseason to get back and I'm ready to go now. We're excited to get back out there and I think we're bringing a good line together."

WR Josh Gordon:

On being activated today:

"I think every day that I'm back means a lot to me. I'm glad to be out there with my brothers, put my helmet back on and get back in the swing of things."

On how much he will practice today:

"I think today might be a light day, a little lighter than usual, so probably not that much I don't think for anybody. I plan on taking a lot of mental reps, getting the most I can mentally from the outside looking in."

On how his quad is feeling:

"It's great. Quad is great. Best it has felt in a long time."

On if there is a chance he will play Thursday:

"I'm not sure. I'm not sure. That is something you have to ask (Head) Coach (Hue Jackson)."

On him appearing to be happy:

"Yeah, it's something that I really haven't felt in a long time. Once you get that type of feeling, type of vibe and environment being around happy people, it kind of just rubs off you. I've missed it. Being back in it, I love it and I try to take full advantage of it. I'm glad to be back and that's probably what you saw there."

On if he now appreciates things he might not have before:

"I think definitely, definitely, especially here in the preseason. A lot of guys don't take that seriously, but every opportunity you can get out there and show what you can do, hurt or not, I think guys should take it seriously and I definitely take it seriously. I like to have fun while I'm here."

On what he's been doing off the field to get ready to play:

"Away from the field, it's a lot of mental reps, really in meetings, taking a lot more notes trying to pick up the offense a lot quicker compared to all the guys that have been here this time. I have a lot of room to close that gap and pick up and hopefully play here soon. It takes a lot of effort, and I think that's what I need to do. It's good to create the habit."

On his weight and where he needs to be:

"I'm not sure where I'm at right now. I haven't weighed in, but there really isn't a number. Nobody really gave me a number. I kind of set my own goal in my head of what I used to play at, but I feel just as strong, just as fast as I ever felt before, if not stronger, if not faster. We'll see how my production is and we'll go from there once we evaluate and get some stuff on film. I'll be able to tell how I feel once I get out there."

On Jackson saying he's lost weight since his return:

"Yeah, definitely. I was getting work in off the field, in treatments, workouts on my own and with the team a lot more than I was used. I've definitely been toning up."

On the difference in his attitude and approach coming back now compared to 2014:

"That was such a long time ago. I really couldn't even tell you, but I know right here in 2016 these guys are great. This opportunity we have here is nothing that I've felt before, seen before and I really want to be a part of it. I think as Ms. ( beat writer Mary Kay) Cabot was saying, just being happy. Everybody feels differently and you feel more enthusiastic about coming to work when guys commit themselves to win. I think it rubs off on everybody and I think that's just what the coaching needs to be here. I really bought into it and I think the rest of the guys have."

WR Andrew Hawkins:

On what it will be like to see WR Josh Gordon return to the field:

"It's going to be awesome. It's a long time coming. Like I said, he's been incredible this training camp and I think everyone is excited to see him back in a Browns uniform and continue his chase to be the best Josh he can be."

On the Brown offense's potential considering the talent at WR:

"I think we have a lot of talent. We have a lot of work to put in still because the talent is only one side of it, and I think everybody is taking the steps to get that done. It'll be a process, but as long as we're working, as long as everybody is all in, we have the possibility to be a pretty good corps."

On how excited he is to play in this offense under Head Coach Hue Jackson:

"I'm really excited just because I know what kind of an offensive mind Hue is and I know what kind of untapped potential that we have. What is potential, though? We have to show it out there. We have to prove it. We have to put the work in. It's not something that is going to happen overnight. Consistency is the name of the game in the NFL so we have to figure out a way to not only be good but be good on a consistent basis. Otherwise, like I said, it's just all headlines and quotes."

On if he's concerned about the WR corps, given recent injuries:

"Not concerned at all. Injuries happen every single year. Receivers get hurt every single year since the beginning of football. That'll be a headline next camp, the camp after that, with every single team throughout history. We just have to get right. All we can focus on is trying to get the injuries prevented and get back from the ones that we're in and continue on. You really can't control that stuff. That's what makes football special and that's what makes it such a crapshoot sometimes."

LB Emmanuel Ogbah:

On his first preseason game:

"It felt good being out there going against another team. Now, I got the first game jitters out of my system so I'm ready."

On his performance on Friday:

"I thought I played decent. I played good, I did my job, did my responsibilities. It just felt good being out there again."

On how much confidence his performance in the first preseason game gives him going forward:

"It definitely gives a lot of confidence because first I'm relieved – first game, just getting out and seeing how offensive tackles and offensive linemen are – but it feels good just going out there and just doing my thing."

On Head Coach Hue Jackson's comment that he liked that Ogbah pushed through and continued to play hard to make a play, even after looking tired:

"Oh yeah, I was a little gassed. It was like a long drive, but I just kept pushing myself. I just push myself as far as I can, and I felt like my team needed me. That one play we had to stop them for them to kick that punt so I just gave it my all."

On if he noticed a big difference from college football versus his first NFL preseason game:

"I would say I didn't really notice much of a big difference. It's just football – 11 on 11, man on man."

On DL Carl Nassib:

"Carl is a great player. We were both drafted for a reason. We were both drafted to come here and change the program. Carl is a character. He loves to go out there and have a good time, just make plays. We told each other, like I told him, since he got the first sack, I was like I have to get one too before the game is over, and I finally got one so that was good."

On if he is comfortable playing DE in a 3-4 or if it is still a transition for him:

"Like I said, I'm learning different things every day. I'm learning the position every day and just getting better every day."

On attend LB meetings:

"Right now, I'm with the defensive line most of the time."

On if he may end up back at OLB at some point:

"Yeah, I have a feeling I will be back at outside linebacker, but I don't know. It's whatever the coaches want me to do."

On what parts of his skillset he needs to use well to be successful in the NFL:

"I would say my length and my speed. Being how quick I am, I can easily be quicker than an offensive lineman. Yeah, they're bigger than me, but I still have to be quicker than them so that they can't get their hands on me."

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