Included below are select quotes from interviews with the following Browns players during today's media availability:
- WR Kenny Britt
- QB DeShone Kizer (full transcript)
- DB Jabrill Peppers
WR Kenny Britt:
On WRs developing chemistry with QB DeShone Kizer:
"Guys have to be on the same page. Being a veteran receiver, I need to help him out as much as I can. It is a lot on the quarterback to make sure that everyone is lined up and in their positions, but you have to take that off him. You have to go out there and know where to line up, where to go and running routes in certain coverages."
On how to develop chemistry during the week:
"In the classroom, watching more film and talking to each other. Him asking questions of where we are going to be at in certain coverages. If I see this, where are you going to be? What are you going to do? We have to respond so that we are on the same page."
On if he liked Kizer showing maturity by taking responsibility for the loss and dropped passes on Sunday:
"Yeah, definitely. You want a quarterback who is making sure he is coming back to his receivers because we are the ones out there and we want to help him out, but we have to help him out by catching the ball. He did a great job. Regardless of where is putting the ball, our job to make sure that he looks good out there."
On if he still thinks Kizer can be 'one of the greats':
On what is most encouraging with Kizer:
"How he takes the weeks after a loss. He doesn't take them very well. He wants to come in each and every day to get better. He is fighting to get better for himself and with the team. This offense has only been together since OTAs as a group and as a unit and really all together since the last preseason game. We are young within the offense, and we are still learning. We are going to be scary in November and December, and that is when the good teams get great to tell you the truth."
QB DeShone Kizer:
On getting back to work and moving forward following a loss:
"That is part of being a pro. Every week is a new week. Every week is a new opportunity to go out and get better and execute a gameplan that is put in front of you. We know that this is a game for us to go out there and try to put together a full game for once. We are looking forward to working as hard as we can this week to prepare for that."
On how to start fast offensively on Sunday:
"It is a mentality. Once again, it is a mindset. You have to be focused in on that all week. We know that we have to start every practice fast. We have to start every rep of a drill fast. That hopefully will carry over into the game so that we can go out and execute our gameplan the best we can in that first quarter."
On the impact of Bengals LB Vontaze Burfict returning from suspension this week, and if it is a challenge since there isn't game film of Burfict this season:
"Fortunately, in this division, we play every team twice. Last year, we can go back and watch the film on him and see his tendencies and use all of my different teammates' knowledge of playing against him to try to go out and stop one of their best players on defense."
On what Burfict means to the Bengals defense:
"He is their spark. He is their energy. He is definitely one of their key guys on that side. Every week, it is our job to stop their key players. He is definitely a guy to be eyeing."
On how he has grown in the first three weeks of the season:
"I'm becoming more comfortable each week. I'm learning how to be a pro. I'm learning from some of the best around me and just kind of taking every experience for what it is and doing my best to get better each week."
On if he has to be more careful when scrambling and sliding this week given Burfict's presence and reputation:
"It's the ref's job to make sure that the quarterback is protected when he does slide, and it is my job to make sure that I don't take as many hits as I possibly can. I'm sure that after this little time off that he learned somewhat of a lesson, but if he hasn't, I just have to make sure that I'm protecting myself."
On if he felt the hit he took last week when sliding:
"Yeah, you feel every hit you take in this league. There are a lot of big guys who are flying around, but I'm completely healthy and ready to go."
On if there should have been a flag on the play he was hit when sliding:
"My slide was a little late. I have to make sure that if I protect myself, I'm doing it properly."
On the hit to his lower legs that resulted in a penalty Sunday:
"I'm completely OK, completely healthy from it, but once again, that is an opportunity for the officials in our league to continue to protect the quarterback. (Colts DB) Malik (Hooker) and I are good friends off the field so I know there were no harmful intentions on that."
On if Hooker said anything to him after the game:
"Yeah, we talked after for a little bit."
On how to not let last year's losing record impact the team's psyche and play a complete game:
"It is the same answer to why we are having lulls in games. You have to focus in on each rep. You have to allow that to drive your mentality. For us, if we are not winning from within and we are not taking every play seriously and not trying to execute every play for the rep that it is, we are going to continue to go through the lulls that we are going through. I think we are learning each week how important it is to execute every play and how hard it is to go out and win games. That mindset now is being transferred into practice. We are practicing harder than ever, and we are preparing harder than ever so hopefully, we can put that behind us."
On if he sees a change in the team over the last couple of weeks:
"Absolutely. Every time we step on that field, it is an opportunity to learn. We are becoming more experienced as an offense, and every individual is becoming more experienced every time we step on that field. We are learning. We are getting better. We definitely feel that progress here, and that mentality is what drives us at practice to get better."
On if he ever had to leave a game due to injury:
"I have not. I have been fortunate enough to be healthy."
On if he never missed a game due to an injury sustained a practice week:
On how to improve on third down:
"There is a lot that goes into third down. Obviously, it is an opportunity for a defense, depending upon the distance and what look they are going to give us, they could give us some of their exotics, but it is on us on offense to No. 1 get the call in fast, get it communicated fast so that we can get out there fast and see what the defense is giving us. From there, it is just about executing. You have to execute like every other down. It is about making sure that every guy out there is doing every part of his job, from his release if he is a receiver, from his technique if he is blocking and on my part, making sure that my mechanics are the same as they have always been and make sure that the ball is exactly where it needs to be."
On if inefficiencies on first and second down have been leading to third-and-longs:
"Yeah, there are penalties that get involved with that and lack of execution, but right now, the only thing that we can control from the easier standpoint is those penalties. If we start at first-and-10 and not first-and-20, that is going to give us a better chance to be in third-and-short, where we can be more predictable with what the defense gives us and run the proper plays."
On if Bengals QB Andy Dalton's struggles this year help him understand even good QBs have challenges at times:
"Ratings mean absolutely nothing. I think we saw last week that he is a very talented guy. He has been in the system and has worked his way into the top of this league as a quarterback. It goes to show that for myself and for him that each week you have to go out and grind, you have to prepare and at any point in time, a defense can come out and give their best game against you and you have to be able to respond to that. I'm sure he is motivated, as well as I am, to go out and prepare and work as hard as we can to up our game each week."
On if he has met Dalton or discussed Head Coach Hue Jackson's offense with Dalton:
"I have not."
On if the lack of production in the run game is frustrating for the offense:
"It is about taking what the defense is giving you. I think everyone in the country knows that we have a very good offensive line and two really good running backs out there running the ball. In order to stop that, they are going to put an extra guy in the box. We have to respond properly and put the ball in the air a couple of times. Yeah, it is our goal each week to make sure that our running game is one of the best out in the league and we are doing whatever we can to improve that. That once again goes into each guy executing his job from me carrying out fakes to our offensive line making sure that they are taking the inside step. Whatever it is, we have to make sure that we are executing and taking what the defense gives us."
On his chemistry with WR Jordan Leslie and Leslie's the one-handed catch last week:
"It is awesome. To think that Jordan last weekend was sitting on his couch cheering us on and now he is out here making plays for us is awesome. Jordan and I have been working together since rookie camp. He was back with us in rookie camp and got to know him then and I have been throwing routes to him quite a bit. We all know that he is a big play guy. He is going to go out and he is going to work hard and he is going to do whatever he can to keep the ball in his hands. Just like everyone else out there, we are going to use him for the abilities that he does have, and we saw last week that one of those is making big plays."
On if Leslie will get more opportunities:
"Once you are in this system, there really isn't much of a 'get the ball to this guy' and 'target that guy.' It is more of a system in which we are just going to respond to what the defense gives us. I am sure that if they allow him to have some one-on-one matchups, then yeah, we have to get the ball his way."
On if the WRs said anything to him after the Colts game:
"Yeah, we have talked quite a bit. We got in the film room early. We will continue to work on that. We know that in order for us to be successful, there is going to have to be a lot of chemistry. There is going to have to be a great understanding of timing, and once again, completing balls is difficult in this league. In order to do so, it is what we work on Monday through Saturday that allows us to be successful on Sunday so we have been right back in the lab working as hard as we can to make sure that we have a better outing next time we step on the field."
On what makes RB Duke Johnson Jr. a dangerous playmaker and how to maximize his touches:
"He is versatile. He is a running back who catches the ball and runs routes as a receiver. For that, we have to make sure that as one of our better playmakers that the ball is in his hand. One of his best attributes, though, is once the ball is in his hands, whether it be on the toss-sweep or quick pass, when he is in space, he does a really good job of making guys miss. In this league, you have to make sure that the better players on your team are getting the right amount of touches. For us, we know that any time the ball is in Duke's hands, there is an ability for us to push an 8-yard gain to a 20-yard gain. We have to do whatever we can to gameplan and schematically get the ball in the matchups with one of our better guys matched up with linebackers and safeties."
On how eager he is to see DL Myles Garrett play:
"Can't wait. Can't wait. I have seen him since rookie minicamp and OTAs. He is a freak of an athlete and I can't wait for him to come out and make some plays for us."
On if Garrett is chomping at the bit to play:
"Yeah, he can't wait. He has been working his butt off and getting back out on the field. I am excited to see him when that time comes."
On what he has learned about OL Kevin Zeitler in his time with him:
"Hardest worker on the team. He is strong. He lives in the weight room. He understands what it takes to be great. That is why we were able to bring him over and make him one of the highest paid at his position because he knows what to do. His discipline is what is required for us all to be great. When you take that and at it with (OLs) JC (Tretter) at center, Joe (Thomas), Joel (Bitonio) and Shon (Coleman), you have a great group that all learning from each other. The discipline that Zeit has, the technique that JC has and then all of the experience that Joe has can lead the other guys who are stepping up into those new roles with Shon on the right side to the success that we want to have as an offensive line."
On if it bothers him that Browns WRs are being criticized:
"We want to be the best group throughout in every unit. For us, we have the ability through our talent to be one of the better receiving corps and better passing offenses in this league. When we are not out there having success, yeah, it is frustrating, but it also acts as a fire under us when we go out week to week to make us work harder. The style of practice that we had in training camp versus the style of practice that we have now is completely different because we know what it takes to go out there and play at the highest level. Every week we have been upping our game. We have been upping it up, and I look forward to getting back out there this week and seeing what these guys are ready to do."
On how TE Seth DeValve creates as much separation as he does:
"He is a very athletic tight end, and when you matchup tight ends with linebackers and safeties, they do what they do. Seth and (TE) David (Njoku) are both guys who are two of the better receiving tight ends in this league. We have to do our best now on offense of once again getting those guys in positions where we can get them the ball because they can make big plays for us. With this third down situation we are having recently, that might be a good outlet for us to get to."
On Dwyane Wade joining the Cleveland Cavaliers:
"I can't wait. I can't wait. Big hoops guy. Been a Cavs fan since I have been growing up. Now to see him over, I am excited to see how this team goes."
On the Cavs lineup with LeBron James, Derrick Rose and Wade:
"I can't imagine it. We will see. All of these super teams that are happening, I think that right here in Cleveland we have one of the best."
On if he will go to Cavs' games this year:
"Absolutely, especially in the offseason. In season, I can tell you I don't have much time to get over to Cavs games, but I am looking forward to supporting them."
On if there is a benefit to facing three AFC North teams early in the season:
"Absolutely, the grit and the toughness that comes in this division makes when we play other divisions, it just gives us a different mentality. That toughness that you have is what football is all about. When you are playing against three of the better defenses in the country twice a year, you are going to create a mindset that allows you to go elsewhere and dominate teams. Our ability right now to play against these guys and get these experiences are going to be things that motivate us and drive us to once again leave our division, leave our conference and go out and have success."
DB Jabrill Peppers:
On the challenges Bengals QB Andy Dalton presents:
"He is a veteran guy. He has phenomenal talent around him. He can put the throws where they need to be so we are definitely making it a point of emphasis to be where we need to be and have our eyes where they need to be as well."
On critiquing his own play after watching the film from Sunday:
"I couldn't sleep for about two days. I just feel like if I make a few of the plays that I missed, it is a different outcome in that game. At the end of the day, you have to take it on the chin, don't run from anything and just keep getting better. I know I have to play better. I don't need anyone to tell me that, but at the end of the day, we all have to play better. We continuously come out and shoot ourselves in the foot and try to gnaw our way back into the game. You are not going to win many ballgames like that. We have to coming out from opening kickoff to closing whistle ready to go and ready to execute. It shouldn't be when we get behind or things like that."
On if he learned from plays he feels he missed Sunday:
"Everything is a learning experience, but in that particular play, I could have read the routes better after I saw that was where he was going. I saw I had a little leverage, people running from the inside, and he was going out of bounds most of the times that we pinned him over there. The help didn't get there as fast as I thought it would, but at the end of the day, that is my job to get that guy down. Even if they kick a field goal, that is still a pretty different game rather than having that big play. That is on me. It is what it is. We can't go back in time and change it. You just have to learn from it, keep improving and make sure that it doesn't happen again."
On if Sunday was humbling given the success throughout his football career:
"It is just all about getting adjusted. It is definitely humbling, but my first year at Michigan, I faced some adversity, as well. I wasn't playing the way I like to and I got hurt. I have never run from adversity, never run from criticism. I just rise to the occasion. I'm three games in of real football and you just have to keep preparing the same way you have been preparing but take it up a notch. How do guys look at you on film now and what do you have to chase off tape? That is how I'm going about it right now. I'm not going to be down on myself or lose confidence or anything like that. It is part of the game. You just have to come back and execute, get better and make the plays when you are supposed to make the plays. It is as simple as that."
On if he slipped on Colts WR T.Y. Hilton's 61-yard touchdown or if he just took a bad angle:
"I wouldn't call it the best of angles, but I wouldn't call it a bad angle either. I saw I had help running from the inside, but at the end of the day, you have to get him down. He didn't make a move or anything. He kind of just ran, and I thought I had people coming and it just kind of caught me off guard a little bit. The timing of it was just weird, and I didn't slip. Not a cramp but a little spasm when I was trying to burst to get him after he made his move. It just all was bad. No matter how you try to slice it, it was just bad."
On if Hilton's speed surprised him playing on turf:
"No, I definitely knew he had speed, definitely knew he was quick. That is why – I don't know if you guys saw earlier – when he caught the ball along the sidelines, I kind of squared up and tried to see what he was going to do when it was just me and him out there. No, that definitely didn't surprise me. It was just the timing of it all, but at the end of the day, you have to get that ball down. That is my job, that is why I'm back there and that is what I have to do. There are no if, ands, buts or excuses I can make about that. I have to get that guy down."