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Browns QB Cody Kessler press conference - 11/4

QB Cody Kessler:

On if it is good to named Sunday's starter:

"Yeah, it is. I look at it as another opportunity. It is exciting and that is all you can really ask for you know as a player is opportunities. My process and preparation all week is the same as the previous weeks. It would be exciting, obviously being out for a week, to get back out there and get a chance to make some plays and get some things going."

On his approach to trying to show that he can be the Browns' long-term QB:

"Those last five games or those two games I came out in, but that is how every game is. It is an opportunity. That is how you have to approach it as a player. Whether it is one game or a full play or a couple plays here and there, there are so many good athletes and players in this league. It is tough to be successful and you have to work really hard at it. For me, my approach has been the same. These last five weeks, I got a chance to play and to start going into this week. Whatever happens moving forward, I just prepare the same way and approach it as an opportunity because you never know how many you are going to get. My process and my preparation has been that and to prepare as the starter every week. To get another chance, another opportunity this weekend is exciting for me, and I am just going to continue to take it the same way and treat it the same way."

On if he compares his ability to Cowboys QB Dak Prescott's:

"No, no. I am not going to be on the field at the same time as Dak. For me, it is focusing on their defense, focusing on controlling what I can control and that is how I play and that is how we play as an offense. That has been my biggest focus. You never want to make it about anything other than the team. For me, it has always been team oriented, team focused. Everything is about the team. Everything is about the offense. That is the same mindset that I have always kept. It allows you to eliminate all of the other outside noise and different things that may be brought up through the week or may be a headline. For me, it has always been focusing on what I can control and that is how I prepare and play and that is how the offense plays."

On if he is grateful for the opportunity to start on Sunday:

"Yeah, it is an opportunity and I am excited, very excited. It was tough being out last week, but (QB) Josh (McCown) has still been great for me. He has been awesome, and he has been the same way during this week and helping me out. I am very thankful that I have Josh McCown as a mentor, as a guy to look up to, a guy to learn from. He has done so many great things in the NFL and for this team. I have been very fortunate to have him right there helping me out. I might bug him sometimes, ask him too many things, but he never hesitates. He is always right there to help me. Just yesterday, we stayed and watched film together. He stayed right here late with me to help me out and walk me through different things. I have been very fortunate to have Josh as a mentor."

On how QB Josh McCown has been such a team player throughout the season:

"He has been awesome. Yeah, he is just a true pro and a guy that I truly want to learn from. If I am fortunate enough to play as long as he did, a lot of that would be due to him. It is because everything he has taught me so young and so early in my career, just not even the football side of it but just how to handle things, how to focus on different things and control what you can control and not make it too big for yourself. He has been great this whole week and throughout really since I have been here so I have been very fortunate."

On what he needs to show the Browns to prove he can be the team's long-term QB:

"For me, it has just been the same as always. Just give it everything I have and do everything I can to help us win you know and prepare. I never want to go into a game nervous or not ready or feeling unprepared. The rest of it will come. Obviously, I have to make plays and third down is another big emphasis, but there are only so many things that you can do each time you are out there so you do not want to try to do it all at once. You focus on the situation and that play or that game or that whatever that may be. For me, I want to continue to keep growing, keep learning. This game, it is tough. The NFL is hard. You have to always be tuned in, always be prepared and continue to work hard. That is something I want to continue to do."

On if Jackson has told him he is the long-term QB now and his expectations for it:

"No, he has just always helped me out, always telling me what to read on certain plays, what to do in this situation, how to make this play work, different things like that. That has always been you know big for me. To have your head coach be that involved with you as a quarterback and in that position, he has done a lot of great things that have helped me you know feel a lot more comfortable. He is a big part of my success so far, as well, and things that have happened but it is a tough league, like I said. You have to lean on those guys, your head coach, (associate head coach-offense) Pep (Hamliton), Josh McCown and (QB) Robert (Griffin III) and all these other guys that have experience. I have been very fortunate to have them help me out."

On Prescott's 6-1 record and if he has to remind himself of the different situations both rookie QBs were thrown into:

"No, I love it here. There is nowhere else I would rather be. I am excited, and I love that, the underdog mentality. Obviously, there have been some games we have been very close in. Unfortunately, we did not finish and it presents itself a challenge. That is what it is each week. OK, we did not finish and we did not get this one, but next week, let's work on this. Let's work on putting a complete game together. Let's finish. It is always a challenge. It is exciting. As a competitor that is what you want. You want a challenge. You want something that is not given to you, but you have to work for. This team has been through a lot, and it is awesome to be a part of it. There is nowhere else I would rather be. This front office and the coaching staff and the players and guys in this locker room have been great to me and the other rookies. They welcome us in and we want to do everything we can to help them out."

On if it is fair to assess winning as a stat specifically to QBs, considering so many factors affect a game:

"Yeah, obviously, it is a team effort and your offense, defense, everyone together, but as a quarterback, that is something you take pride in, being the starting quarterback and winning a game. That is something that you should take pride in, obviously, if you are the starter, and that is a big part of it. For me, obviously, we have not got one yet, but that just makes you want it more and more and more. We have been close a couple times, but at the end of the day, you have to continue to compete and do maybe something extra here and there. That is the best part about this team, guys work together. We are a team. Everyone helps each other and you never put it on one person. You never point out anyone. We all just stay together. For me, I just want to do everything I can to help us win. That is my goal and that's my job as a quarterback is to put us in the right position to win, to make plays and do things that are necessary for you as a quarterback to win a game. That is the main stat I care about. I know it might sound like what you are supposed to say, but that is truly how I feel. The other stats, they are what they are, and obviously, if you have good stats it gives you a better chance, but at the end of the day as a quarterback, you focus on winning the game. That is what your main goal is."

On Prescott saying that he is motivated to prove the doubters wrong for overlooking him and if he feels a similar way:

"You always wake up motivated. Especially as a competitor, you want to be successful and you want to do things like that, but his situation is different than mine obviously, and that is something that that is how he feels and that is how he works. Dak is a great guy and a great quarterback, and I know he works hard. I have known him for a while. For me, my focus is always to come in and do everything I can and compete. I have always felt that if you get beat out or if you lose and someone is just better than you and plays better, then OK, but I could never live with myself if I did not do enough and I felt like I did not put everything I had into it. That is always kind of my mindset when I wake up and go through the day and go through practice and preparation, watching film is you have to put everything you have into it. That is what it takes to be successful. Watching Josh, Josh has a process every week he does. I am trying to learn from that and pick things that work for me and things that might be different. As a competitor and whatever sport it is, especially football, you want to put everything you have into it and work as hard as you can to be successful."

On being drafted in the third round when other QBs were taken earlier:

"That is something I can't control. That is all I wanted was an opportunity, and I was very happy, very fortunate that Cleveland drafted me and I was very excited. For me at the end of the day, it is focus on what you can control. I am excited to be here and you get an opportunity, no matter where. You see all the time stories of guys get drafted here and there and different spots, but the main part of it is when you get your chance what are you going to do with it. That has just been my focus is getting these opportunities, getting games like this as a rookie is I want to go out there and play well and prepare and do everything I can to help our team win."

On if there was any rust this week after not practicing last week:

"Obviously, last week was tough not being able to do anything, but this is the [concussion] protocol, and obviously, it is there for a reason. You just have to go through it. Getting back out, it was awesome to be back out there with the guys on the practice field. No, I felt very tuned in. Mentally all week last week, I was in every meeting watching film doing everything I can that was allowed of me through the protocol. It was great to get back out there and kind of pick up where I left off and continue to get some rhythm with the guys."

On balancing the pressure of the moment and the big opportunity in front of him:

"You keep it the same. It is just another game. It is another opportunity, another game. You can't make the moment too big. You want to stay focused and stay in your own lane and control what you can control and be involved with these guys in the locker room and on the practice field. Everything else outside of this locker room and the front office and the coaches is just things you can't control, headlines or different things like that. What I focus on is my team and the guys around me and the coaching staff and everyone and you just focus on that. It really helps you stay calm and narrow everything down."

On if uncertainty as to who will start at C for the Browns is unsettling at all:

"No, I have played with all of them. (OL) Cam (Erving) and obviously (OL John) Greco was there and (OL) Austin Reiter for a week. We have a lot of guys that feed off each other and do a great job. It really is kind of the next man up mentality so whoever is in there and ready to go on Sunday, we all have that chemistry and we all work together and got reps together. You just continue to go and whoever is in there you just compete together."

On how he and WR Corey Coleman have been connecting this week:

"Been really good. Really good to have Corey back out there obviously. He is a very great football player, great competitor, and we worked on stuff all week and got to throw with him and get a rhythm back. I have been throwing to Corey since Combine training all that so it was nice to have him back out there and running routes and being full go. He is a competitor and he is excited to be back out there."

DB Joe Haden:

On playing against Cowboys WR Dez Bryant:

"I just have to come out there and be on my A game. I really like playing against the best receivers in the game, and Dez is definitely one of them. He is one of my friends. He is with Jordan brand so this is going to be something to talk about in the offseason. I am always looking forward to playing against the best, and he is definitely one of them. I am glad he is able to be back. Last week, he came out and showed he is healthy. He was able to make plays. I just have to do my thing. I watched a lot of film on him, study. He is a very physical, strong receiver. He is more like the (Jets WR) Brandon Marshall type that is physical and is able to catch the ball up top. I just have to be locked in and play my technique."

On LB Jamie Collins Sr.:

"I was super excited when I found out that we got him on the team and just being able to see him out there at practice, you can tell ball players. You can tell ball players as soon as they get out there. You can tell just his physicality and understanding of the game and just the way he plays, the way he knows football. I could tell as soon as we got him, our defense got a whole lot better. We got a whole lot better with him. I am just super excited that he was excited to be here and is just ready to go to try to win games. Everything he has been talking about is to stop Dallas and let us get out first win. With him saying that, that is all I need to hear."

On if Collins feels the family atmosphere from the team:

"Yeah, we get along very well and I think that is why we are still fighting for each other. At the end of the day, we do not feel like we are 0-8. We care to win a lot of these games towards the end. Everybody is still on board. We do not have anyone back-talking. Everybody is on the same page. Everybody is just trying to get better. We know that we are not that far away. Just having everyone come out here competing and playing, it just shows that you care about the man next to you."

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