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Press Conference

Freddie Kitchens talks Baker Mayfield, Antonio Callaway, reviews loss to 49ers - Conference Call

Opening statement:

"Obviously, last night was not what we were looking for. We will learn from this. We did not do enough things to have success. We did not coach well enough, we did not play well enough and we did not execute. We do not want to be an up and down, rollercoaster football team if we want to get to where we want to get to. We just need to find consistency on how we prepare, how we approach the games and how we approach the play. Your hats have to go off to the 49ers. They executed better than we executed. They coached better than we coached. They did everything last night better than we did. They ran the ball on us. That is what they wanted to do. We did not protect the passer like we wanted to protect him. When you have those things, that is a recipe for disaster. We have to play better. We have to coach better. Each individual has to take accountability. Each individual has to look themselves in the mirror and make sure that we collectively are doing what we are supposed to be doing to improve the chances of getting the results that we want to achieve.

"Injury wise, I do not really have much to report. With the early return this morning, we are still getting some feedback, but I think it is mostly just bumps and bruises. We do not think there is anything significant at this point. It was a quick turnaround so we will see where we are tomorrow with that."

On if it is disappointing the Browns had similar inconsistencies last night as Weeks 1-3 following a more complete performance in Week 4:

"You have to have the first one before you can start being consistent. We had the first one. We know what it looks like. We know we had our opportunities last night, and we did not make the best of it. We will learn from this, and we will get better moving forward."

On wanting to be physical as a team and the 49ers' ability to dominate both lines of scrimmage:

"I want the strength of our team to be on both sides of the line of scrimmage and I do not think that was. I think anybody you talk to, ultimately it is the result and we did not get it done."

On why QB Baker Mayfield did not perform as well last night:

"I think there is a lot that goes into that whenever you start talking about that. Some of it has to do with the lack of protection. Some if it had to do with a couple bad throws, a couple bad decisions. Overall, we had some drops. You can't do those things and play the quarterback position at an elite level. If you just want the honest answer, you have to have consistency around you, you have to be consistent yourself and none of that happened last night."

On the difficulty for WRs to learn a new position and be able to move around in the offense, specifically in reference to WR Antonio Callaway:

"We move our receivers around a good bit. I would say the same thing I said last night, I felt like Antonio was ready to play so we played him. He is one of our better players so when our players are healthy and they are eligible to play, they are going to play. In doing that, we move our receivers around. We have always moved our receivers around. Antonio will be better moving forward."

On if he will go back to Callaway next week:

"I definitely will." 

On if he is experiencing a significant learning curve as a first-year head coach facing opposing head coaches with more head coaching experience:

"No, I would not say that at all. I would not say that at all. I think you get into the situation, it is about the result and the narrative changes from the different results that you have. Of course, that can be the narrative. That is the easy thing to say. Just look at the tape."

On how much stock he places into opposing players comments or actions like 49ers DE Nick Bosa's that were directed at Mayfield:

"How much stock do I put into it? I do not put any into it. I do not worry about that. I do not know if we worry about that."

On if he worries at all that Mayfield's comments or personality would fire up an opponent:

"I think different people find motivation from different things. I think ultimately, it is what we do on the field not off the field in that type of setting that matters. Ultimately, we go to the game with the plan, and if we execute the plan, we are usually successful. If it is a good plan and we execute it, we are usually successful with it. It has nothing to do with things off the field like that. It is all about how you play the game."

On if there are concerns the Browns have been unable to get WR Odell Beckham Jr. more involved despite efforts to do so while facing double teams:

"Is it concerning? I think that I have a lot of concerns."

On how to fix concerns on offense:

"Everybody has to do their job. I have to do my job better. Everybody has to do their job. If everybody does their job – me included – we will be successful. It is as simple as that. I know you guys are looking for some kind of state-of-the-art answer, but it is as simple as just doing your job. Everybody has to do their job on every play. We can't take turns with mental errors. We can't take turns with bad technique. We can't take turns of everybody getting their mess up. We have to be on the same page and have got to do our job."

On if the Browns would benefit from trading for or signing an additional OL:

"I do not make those decisions. (General Manager) John (Dorsey) makes those decisions, and that is something that you should probably ask him. My job is to get the guys that we have to play good. I think everybody can do a better job of doing their job and then let everything lay where it lays. We just need to take the guys that we have, play better, coach better and get different results than we got last night."

On his involvement with potential OL transactions:

"John and I do an excellent job of communicating with each other, but those conversations will remain with us. Again, the guys that we have need to play better and we need to coach them better."

On if there are regrets in having Beckham return the punt late in the game:

"No. I would like to have better ball security, but no regrets on having him back there. Contrary to popular belief, I think Odell kept fighting. He wanted to be out there fielding that punt because he thought he could make something happen to give us a spark. If he returned it for a touchdown, it would be the best move since I don't know when, but it would have been a great move at that point. That was hindsight."

On if the Browns played with enough effort in the second half when trailing:

"Yeah, I don't think we had anybody give up or anything like that. We were still fighting. Contrary to popular belief, we had our chances and we didn't do it. We had our chances. When we look at the tape as a team, we had our chances. Everybody will recognize that, and the ones in the building – the people who matter – are the ones who will recognize it. We will move on, and we will get better from it. We have a lot of guys in situations that they have never been in. We are not panicking. We are going to line up and play the next game. There are 11 more."

On why the Browns' tackling was not better last night:

"The tackling wasn't better, the blocking wasn't better – everything. Everybody could get better. Everybody needs to do a better job of doing their job. In the game of football, it takes 11 guys every time the ball is snapped, whether it is on offense or defense. If one of those things breaks down, then your chances of having a successful play are diminished. We had too many breakdowns individually, and then collectively, it affects you. If everybody just does their job better, we change the narrative."

On Mayfield's status following yesterday's game, given Mayfield had his shoulder and leg wrapped or iced:

"I am sure he was bumped and bruised. He got hit more than I would like him to get hit, but he will be fine."

On elaborating on other specific plays early in the game that the Browns missed opportunities outside of obvious ones, referencing WR Antonio Callaway's play at the goal line amongst others:

"Out of all due respect, I would not do that. I do not talk about that kind of stuff. Everybody has the game to watch. Everybody can go back and watch the tape. That is what we are going to do. Of course, it was a big play in the game. We could have cut the lead. When you go on the road in an environment like that, you have to withstand their initial fury and emotion of being at home and all of those kind of things. We withstood that and we put ourselves in position to cut the lead to 14-10 before the half. That is a 14-point turnaround because they take the ball, they go down and score and we are down 21-3 at the half. That was a big sequence right there, but we have to recognize that and we have to fix that problem. I have to call better plays, and they have to make better choices and have to play better. That is how you fix the problem. It is not that hard. It is just we coach better, they play better and we have different results."

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