Press Conference

Freddie Kitchens talks Baker Mayfield, Myles Garrett and more - Conference Call

Opening statement:

“Last night I thought was overall a good team win. Anytime you go can win a game, it is good. I am proud of the way our guys came back after the previous week and just kept fighting. Just as with the losses, you look for ways to get better, and we certainly have several opportunities to do that taking away from this game the things that we need to improve on. We have a quick turnaround, a quicker than normal turnaround to get ready for one of the best teams in the NFL coming in town”

On TE David Njoku’s status:

“Still waiting to get the final word on that. I know he left the game with a concussion so I usually just leave that up to the doctors. I do not have anything to do with that.”

On RB Nick Chubb’s status:

“He just got the breath knocked out of him. He is good.”

On if opposing defenses are doing something different this year to take away quick passes:

“No, I do not think so. I have to do a better job of getting the ball out of (QB) Baker’s (Mayfield) hands quicker. That is where we stand with that.”

On Mayfield’s performance yesterday:

“On some of the plays, he looked good on and some of the plays he did not look so good on, but it is all things that we can correct. I can do a better job personally putting him in better situations on a more consistent basis. That is the way we will go about that.”

On what caused Mayfield’s high passes and if it was due to being rushed:

“He just missed some of the throws. Some of the angles were off. Just overall, just missing throws. He is not going to make every throw. I have to do a better job of creating better throws for him.”

On it being hard to tell how Mayfield has progressed in his second season through the first two games:

“I do not know what you are looking for there. I do not know.”

On assumptions Mayfield would improve significantly in Year 2 but it not seeming apparent Mayfield has improved significantly through the first two games:

“Are you looking for me to say that he has not improved? Is that what you are wanting?”

On if he has seen improvement that others have not seen in Mayfield through the first two games:

“I would say my answer is that he is going to continue to try to get better every day. Every game is not the same. The quarterback’s job is to win the game, and that is what he did last night. I will reiterate that I need to put him in better situations, too.”

On putting Mayfield in better situations:

“We need to get the ball out of his hands quicker. He is taking too many hits. I do not like my quarterback to take hits. I need to get the ball out of his hands quicker.” 

On if the Browns are still working through communication on offense, given the team frequently snapped the ball shortly before the play clock expired:

“No. There are certain looks that we are checking things at the line of scrimmage on and you are going to run down to the last few seconds on the clock when that happens. Once you are in a game like that, you are trying to bleed as much clock as you can on each and every play. That is probably what you saw a couple of times. A couple of times we were checking at the line, and really, we had to rewind it after we checked. It just got down to the last bit of it, but no, I do not see a problem on that.”

On opponents’ ability to gameplan for Mayfield from last year’s film and if that is impacting Mayfield’s performance:

“I think we are pretty prepared on gameday. They did not surprise us with anything or anything like that. I have to do a better job during the course of the week.”

On where the Browns improved the most last night from Week 1:

“Playing with passion and not off of emotion. Sometimes when you let emotion get involved, you sometimes make you irrational decisions. I think we harnessed that and played with more passion than emotion.”

On DE Myles Garrett balancing aggressive play while eliminating penalties:

“Yeah, that is the thing, just continue to work with him and make him understand that I do not ever want to take his aggressiveness away, but he does have to understand when he is going to hurt the team. I think he did a much better job of that last night. We still had a couple of instances where he kind of let it, slip but he is going to continue to get better at that when he gets a feel for what they will call and what they will not call. I expect Myles to be better and keep getting better in that area each and every time we go out.”

On if he feels an immediate need to add a third QB after QB Drew Stanton was placed on injured reserve:

“Not right now, no.”

On if Stanton sustained the injury in practice or if it was the result of an accumulation over time:

“It is an ongoing thing with his knee that he has been monitoring. The best course of action right now is to kind of give him a break and see if we can get it better in that instance with the possibility of coming back down the road.”

On if there is a risk to only having two QBs on the active roster:

“Yeah, it is always risky having two, but there are a lot of things that have to happen. You have to look at your team. Having a third quarterback is not the most pressing decision a lot of times. You have other things you have to cover up for in other areas. That is just where our emphasis is right now.”

On Mayfield taking a sack on 3rd-and-8 at the two-minute warning, if Mayfield should have thrown the ball away and if it was a coverage sack:

“I consider it not wanting to stop the clock and keep the clock moving. Once it was not open initially, I would like for him to do a little better job of protecting himself, but I agree, you do not want an incompletion there so that is what we were thinking.”

On and update on the status for WR Rashard Higgins, RB Dontrell Hilliard and S Damarious Randall and if they will return this week:

“Those are all kind of day-by-day things. I could give you an answer today and it would be different tomorrow so I would just take that day by day right now.”

On if the Browns OL played better than it did in Week 1:

“Yeah, they did. They played better. We still need to continue to get better on a play-by-play basis. We had some things we left on the field last night certainly. When you start talking about the line play, you also have to include the tight ends. All of those guys work in conjunction a lot with each other with the protections. Sometimes people just like to pin it on the line, but sometimes it is other areas, too. We all need to continue to get better. Just because we won the game does not mean we are not going to continue to get better each and every time we get out.”

On clarifying that the preference would be for Mayfield to give himself up on the 3rd-and-8 at the two-minute warning rather than taking a hit:

“Yes, exactly. In that situation, you are either going to hand the ball off and get hit in the backfield three or four yards or you take advantage of what they are giving you. When they cover it, you just protect yourself. I do not need him out there taking unnecessary shots."

On stating he can put Mayfield in better positions at time and if deeper route concepts were involved on the 3rd-and-8 at the two-minute warning:

“There are several things you can do, but in that instance right there, it was just at the end of the game and try to take advantage of what they are letting you do.”

On being pleased with CB Greedy William’s performance:

“Yeah, I thought Greedy played pretty well. There are a couple things he would like to have back, but overall, he did a nice job. I was pleased with Greedy. He competed. He competed every snap.”

On if one factor to the Browns needing to get passes out quicker is that the offense is still somewhat of a work-in-progress as personnel is playing together for the first time and needs to play faster:

“I think so. That probably has a lot to do with it. My job is to, until we get to that point, do what we can do good right now and that is a week-to-week thing, and I have to do a better job of doing that.”

On if the Browns were trying to work on a specific offensive concept on the 3rd-and-8 at the two-minute warning, given the team had a three-score lead, and if it mattered if the NY Jets stopped a running play in the backfield:

“No, it did not matter. It matters to me, but it probably does not matter to everybody else. We have certain things we are going to do and certain things we are not going to do. I am not going to call a play that does not have the opportunity to be successful. We are going to finish the game. That is what we preach is finish the game, and that is what we were trying to do. We were trying to get a first down.”

On how ready this Browns team is to face an elite team in the defending NFC Champion Los Angeles Rams:

“It is a great challenge for is. Our guys will do a good job preparing this week, and we will go out and give it our best shot on Sunday. They are a very good team. We are going to show up on Sunday and see where we are.”

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