Browns QB Cody Kessler press conference - 11/17


QB Cody Kessler:**

On the coldest football game he has played in, given the weather forecast for Sunday:

"We played Notre Dame a couple of times in South Bend. It got pretty cold. We played (University of) Colorado. I remember my sophomore year we played Colorado I think it was in the teens temperature wise, and obviously, with the wind chill, it was a little bit cooler than that and there was snow. I have been used to that. Growing up in Bakersfield, not a lot of people know this, that in the summer it is in triple digits and I think we have had about two or three winters since I have been there that it snowed. Playing there in high school and playing when I was a little kid so not a whole lot obviously in Bakersfield, but I played a couple of games in the snow."

On not necessarily being able to fully prepare to play in inclement weather:

"Obviously, the weather is a factor that you can't control, but yeah stuff, I used to do in college – we tried different things, maybe get your hand cold before you throw or do something like that, but it is impossible to really simulate what the weather is going to be like. The wind, the snow, the rain, whatever it may be, it is difficult, but you just have to go in with the mindset of you can't control it. You have to focus on what you control and that is if the wind is going, maybe drive the ball a little bit more, get a little better grip on the ball or do whatever you can to play through the factors."

On if he may need to push the envelope and take a few more chances as he continues to develop:

"Each week, obviously I have been learning more and more and getting more comfortable with the guys and the offense and everything. Yeah, obviously, as a quarterback you want to take more chances. You want to get the ball down field. You want to be able to extend drives but at the same time be smart with the football and keep it in your possession. You have to find a happy medium of that. You have to protect the football, but at the same time, you have to take some shots and take some chances. As I continue to grow in this offense and with these guys, that is something I want to continue to do more."

On comparing the difference between open windows for a QB in college versus at the NFL level:

"Obviously, guys are faster in the NFL and they are quicker and they move around with the football a little bit quicker, but a lot of that is on you in a sense of knowing when to throw the ball, knowing where to throw the ball and knowing pre-snap where to go with the football. That helps a ton with anticipation, getting the ball out on time and no hesitation, obviously, because if you hesitate, the window is going to close like that. You have to anticipate and be ready to go and know where to go with the football. To your point, guys are a lot faster in the NFL. You just have to get it out a little bit quicker."

On how he feels mentally after being pulled in the Browns game against the Ravens and speaking with Head Coach Hue Jackson:

"I have moved on from it obviously, and it is a new week and it is something to learn from. It just gets you motivated and want to do better and not to let that happen again and do everything you can. I moved on from it. My main focus right now is Pittsburgh and getting ready for this game and going out there and having a great week of practice. These guys have come back and done a great job this week of rallying around me and then helping me out, getting me back out there. It has been great. (QB) Josh (McCown), (QB) Robert (Griffin III) and everyone has really helped me out a ton, too, so I am very fortunate to have the guys I do on this team to be there and help me out. It is something that you want to improve on and you don't want to happen so you have to move on and be better."

On how quickly he was able to brush off getting benched:

"Obviously, after the game, you kind of have a little bit of a 24-hour rule or something where that night it upsets you and the next day, but you have to move on. Like I said, you can't let it stick in your head. You can't let it continue to bother you or else that is what you are going to think about. For me, when I came back throughout the weekend – we had the weekend off and I came in a couple times – I just started on Pittsburgh and completely just moved on from it. At the same time, you learn from it. Things that, watching that film against Baltimore, things that I wish I could have done better and different things like that are something that you want to move on from, but at the same time, carry with you to learn from."

On how getting pulled from the Baltimore game affects him leading into the next game and if it is on his mind that he might get pulled again:

"No, you can't feel like that. You can't play scared. You can't play timid. You have to go out and focus on that next moment, that next game, that next play and you have to improve on it. That is something that I have really emphasized this week was we had third down again today and did some of it yesterday and put a lot of emphasis on that and made sure I had everything down right and all the calls and things we are going to do on third down. I want to have it down perfect. I felt very comfortable going into the week and I have been doing that the last couple of weeks just a little bit more. You can always find somewhere to improve a little bit more. For me, it has been more of a motivation this week to make sure I have everything down and ready to go. I am not thinking about obviously the last game."

On his takeaways from his discussion with Jackson:

"Obviously, it is something that you have to learn from. He sat down and we talked about it. For me, it is something that I have to play better. I have to extend drives more. I have to do better on third down. I have to be able to finish drives and eliminate three-and-outs. That stuff as a quarterback you learn. You have to continue to put drives together. At the end of the day, Coach Jackson has been awesome for me. He has done so much for me. Him and (associate head coach-offense) Pep (Hamilton) have been awesome and they have helped me out so much. I respect both of them very much so whenever Coach Jackson talks to me, whether that is in that situation or a different situation, I am always listening and picking up every little thing I can from that. He has been great with me and helping me out."

On the Browns offense's struggles in the third quarter:

"It is like the start of a new game. You come out in the second half and you come out in the beginning of the game and you are pumped up and you get that energy and a lot of things happen, especially just the whole first half you have a ton of energy, but you have to be able to restart. Go into halftime, make adjustments, fix things, come back out and restart and get that same momentum back. That has been our biggest emphasis the past few weeks now is finish. Finish is the biggest thing that we need to work on. That has been something that for the last couple of weeks has really hurt us. The guys have really responded to it, but it is really kind of between yourself to come out and whatever it may take to get yourself back going again and get ready to play the second half."

On plays that were left on the field against Baltimore:

"Obviously, there are always plays in games that you go back and watch and say, 'I wish I would have made that one. I wish I would have gotten that play done.' There are a couple for me individually, and there have been some in every game that I wish I had back and wish I converted and done a little better. I take it as a teaching moment and I learn from it. I don't try to harp on it or think about it too much. I just try to learn from it and move on."

On if it is a matter of not seeing an open player, not making a throw or any common theme with those teaching moments:

"I think it is just executing the offense, the play exactly that Coach wanted on that play and something that I didn't do, whether on a specific play I go to the wrong guy or maybe make the wrong call. Whatever it was specific-play wise, without getting into the details of our offense, it is something that you want to fix. Whether it is a call or going pre-snap or post-snap read, whatever it is, you want to be able to do that on every play. That is something that I have to continue to learn from."

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