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Press Conference

Gregg Williams press conference - 11/23

Opening statement:

"Another good day. Before we start, I hope that you all had a good day yesterday on Thanksgiving. One of the things that we talked about here was is that you get a chance to practice or if you ever get a chance to play in the NFL on Thanksgiving, it is an honor. Not very many people whoever start out playing little league football, high school football and college football, get the opportunity to play in the National Football League – the percentages are so low. All of a sudden, now you are practicing or you are playing on that day. You need to make sure you know the respect that it is and what a fortunate honor opportunity for you. We had a really good practice yesterday. They did really well. Got them out a little bit early. What we did today was we built a little bit of extra time in the schedule this morning to go back over the practice film from yesterday before we started today. Normally, we take care of that on Thursday, but we pushed it to today so that we could get that done. With the way that technology is, they all watched it anyway yesterday themselves, graded themselves and had a good report coming in on questions and stuff before we ever started with them. Another good practice today. Now, we have to finish strong here with the meetings we have today and come back in tomorrow and get ready to go."

On the effectiveness of Bengals WR Tyler Boyd and the other Bengals WRs, given Bengals WR A.J. Green did not practice:

"He has played very well. Take a look at the targets. Look at all of the targets that he has had this year. All of their receivers, their play concepts are their play concepts, whoever plays the position. Similar, next man up. (Bengals WR) A.J. (Green) has played a lot in this league. We will prepare for all of the scenarios. It will not change how we will go about preparing. We have gone through all of those what ifs each and every day on the practice field this week."

On if there is an advantage for a team to have its bye week later in the season:

"I am anxious to go through the evaluation of that because this is the latest that I personally have ever had it. I was always semi-anti-having it really early in the year. I have been where we have had it on Week 4 before, and I did not really care for that. Have been really blessed to have it a lot of the times in the middle of the year. I am anxious to see how this is. The response that we are getting right now is that it came at a good time here for the injury stuff and a breath of fresh air stuff. I really am going to take that all into account after the season and go back and evaluate that. I keep a file on everything after all of these years."

On studying Pro Football Hall of Fame Head Coach Paul Brown and his history, as well as its significance:

"I really have studied him, studied the profession and go way back into the history of the team. In all honesty, that was one of the checkmark kind of things of why I wanted to come here. It was about that history and going back into the great history of this team. I knock on wood and thank every day – I have an office down the hallway from (Pro Football Hall of Fame RB) Jim Brown. Are you kidding me? I grew up idolizing Jim Brown when he was playing back in those heydays and stuff. All of that goes into the respect for the game, respect for what we do and why we do. Those types of stories, also, we share with these young guys. One of the things that I want these young guys and we want these young guys, to know is there were a lot of people before you in this league. There are a lot of people that set the foundation of what this league is about and grew this league, and grew it to the point where now there are guys making pretty good money doing what those other guys were doing – coaches and players. Yes, is the answer to your question. It means a lot, especially to me."

On why he decided to pursue a football coaching career:

"I thought about being a doctor, but everybody was worried about my bedside manner so I became a coach. That was one of the things. If I was not doing what I was doing, that is what I was going to do. That is what I wanted to do, but I love what I am doing. I was not good enough to play at the next level but wanted to have an attempt to lead young men. I have enjoyed every aspect of that. I really take it seriously on that. I talk about being a life coach before being a football coach and talk about discipline, focus and accountability in all walks of life. That is how I was raised. Both of my parents are living back in the same old hole town that I grew up in. I talked with them for quite a while yesterday. One of the things that I talked with each player here was making sure that they give thanks and called every family member, every friend that they had and give thanks to yesterday. I talked to my mom and dad for quite a long time yesterday."

On if there was a time when he expected to remain a high school football coach:

"Yeah, and I would have been fine with it. One of the things that in my hometown – this story goes way back – is that I did not get the head coaching job in my hometown. They wanted to know what I was going to do. I said, 'I am going to say thank you because I want to move on because I want to be a head coach. I would love to coach college, and then one of these days before I hang it up, I would like to coach in the NFL.' They laughed at me. Twenty-six years later, I brought all of those people on that committee back and they had to take a picture down at my foundation (The Gregg Williams Foundation) with me and the Super Bowl trophy. The message was this: why put a cap on any child's dreams? I was not a child at the time, but why would you do that? If you want it bad enough and you are going to work hard enough at it, take advantage of what you can do and do it. It has been a good example for a lot of things in that little hometown where I grew up in. I appreciate those people a lot. That is why I go back every summer for the foundation stuff that we do for kids back in that hometown."

On if he ever considered what form of medicine he would study if he became a doctor:

"I was looking at orthopedics. One of my things is that I love brain science, and I love neuroscience. It is one of my hobbies. My wife is a doctor. She is a clinical psychologist so I married a shrink. I think she wants to write a new book (laughter)."

On if he keeps is wife's practice busy:

"Evidently, right now it is a full-time trying to take care of me. I am sure."

On evaluating the Bengals defense, given its ranking in multiple statistical categories:

"The things that I have looked at and things that I have helped our guys out with a little bit is how they can play better in space. They have had to battle the injury bug, too. A lot of that has been that they have changed a little bit of the style of defense and that they have been away from what they have been doing for a long time. Sometimes those types of things – I have been a part of that, too and had to learn the hard way a long, long time ago – that it is not what I like to do; it is what the players can do. Revamping things maybe back to more of what (Bengals Head Coach) Marvin (Lewis) does, I am not sure on that. They have battled the injury bug and sometimes that hurts a lot. They have played some high-profile teams, too, that can move the ball and score some points – the same guys that we gave been playing. There have been a lot of very high-octane offenses that the AFC North has had to play this year. That leads to some of that, too."

On if former Browns Head Coach and Bengals special assistant to the head coach Hue Jackson's name came up much this week in preparation for the Bengals:

"No. Our guys have been really focused about that. Unless they came up to you guys, whatever you are asking or talking to them. Not in our meetings or any of that kind of stuff. No."

On if the coaching staff and team discussed the team's current road losing streak to the players:

"We did. I just brought it up. Brought up the points. Brought up the stats. Do not hide from it. Be aware of it. How are we going to use that information? We started the week out with that. Yes. It was because of you [asking about it] – no, I am just kidding (laugher)."

On if OL Greg Robinson will start at LT:

"Right now, it is still a competition. We will see how everything comes out of the practice today."

On what Robinson needs to do to solidify his role as starting at LT:

"The big thing is this, is that every single player, especially with me being involved, is it is [compete] every day. I do not care. There is no such thing as starters in this league. Who plays the most is who practices the best and who does the best. You have to go about doing your job every single day. That is how I have always looked at it. The respect on your team and the respect from your locker room is that they see coaches understand that, too."

On Bengals QB Andy Dalton:

"I have a lot of respect for him. Did a lot of work on him coming out back in college. Have a lot of respect for his college coaches. Several of his college coaches were close to me. I even coached a couple of them back then in those days. Had some good reports on him. I think that he has grown as a quarterback. I think that he has had stretches of brilliance. Just like anybody that plays this position long enough, you have to be able to fight through the tough times, too. He has. He has shown that. We have a lot of respect for what he does, and he fits in that category of as an experienced quarterback, there are not a lot of things that you can really confuse him on. Hopefully, you can hurry him or maybe cause an errant throw or two, but he is a smart guy, too. He is a very understanding, a good leader quarterback."

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