Press Conference

Hue Jackson press conference - 11/30

**

Opening statement:**

"Good day – lot of work, a lot of good work. Guys are working hard. Excited about playing.

On his expectations for WR Josh Gordon on Sunday:

"What I have been seeing in practice. He is pretty talented, very talented."

On if Gordon will be on a pitch count Sunday or if he will 'let him rip':

"Let it rip. Pitch count? With this guy (laughter)? No, it has been what? Three years? I want three years of that pitch count back out there right now (laughter). No, he has done a good job this week. He has worked extremely hard. I think he is excited about playing. It will be a big day for him. Again, I don't want to make it too big at the same time. Like we said, he hasn't played in three years. It is still going to be a little different for him, I don't care what anybody says, but we have to transition him through that and help him through it. I think he will go play well, though."

On if he will talk to Gordon personally about not making this game too big:

"Absolutely. This is the first opportunity hopefully of many. Hopefully, he will take advantage of it by the way he plays. He has done a really good job of preparing, but as we know, that just gives you an opportunity to play the game well on Sunday. He has to go do it."

On Gordon facing pressure after not playing for a significant time and his past issues with substance abuse:

"You know what? I don't know that this young man feels pressure. I really don't. I can't tell you what's inside him. The way he goes out and competes and practices and what I have seen thus far, he is the same Josh, having a good time, making plays and doing what he needs to do. Probably inside, I'm sure there will be some things rolling through his head that he will work through, but we will be there to assist him, that is for sure." 

On if he is comfortable saying Gordon will start:

"Am I comfortable saying that? Heck yeah. Are you kidding me (laughter)? Yeah, he is going to start. Right away."

On starting Gordon but saying he doesn't want to make too big of a deal of Gordon's return:

"Yeah, but that is not a big deal. You have to play your good players, right? For you guys to ask me now, I'm kind of surprised you would ask. Yeah, he is going to start (laughter)."

On if the Chargers defense will approach Gordon like the All-Pro he was when he last played:

"I don't know. They may. I think they are going to do what they do. They are playing well right now. I don't think they are going to make any adjustments yet until we make them make them. I think they see him as a player who has played. There is not a lot of tape on him over the last several years so I'm sure people are not sure what he is. Hopefully, that is an advantage to us right now."

On if it is important for QB DeShone Kizer not to force passes to Gordon:

"We are not going to force balls. Our quarterback still has to throw the ball where it is supposed to go, but we will have things specific for him and things for (WR) Corey (Coleman). We will have things for all of our guys. Hopefully, when their number is called, they will make those plays."

On if he will talk to Kizer about not forcing passes to Gordon as QB Brian Hoyer did during Gordon's return in 2014:

"I think the interceptions will tell DeShone all he needs to know. That interception number he has, he gets it. We have to go play efficient football and take care of the football. The quarterback understands that he has to put the ball where it is supposed to be and throw it to the right person."

On if Gordon has a grasp of the playbook and route tree:

"He really does. I have been pleasantly surprised that way. There was a lot of carryover from the last time he was here during the summer. He did a great job in the conditioning piece of it once they let him back in the building and we did some things from a script standpoint with him. He has been right on all week. Now, it is the game – the anxiety of playing the game, first game back, playing the Chargers in Los Angeles. Now he has to couple all of that with remembering what to do, how to do it and where to line up. There is a lot of stuff that he has to work himself through, but I think he is up to the challenge."

On if Gordon's presence can help the running game and other aspects of the offense:

"Oh, he can. He is a different guy. He is a different player. He is talented."

On how an opposing defense would have to adjust when facing a talent like Gordon:

"I have seen teams have to put two guys on guys like these and play a different style of defense to account for these kind of guys. When he is rolling and playing like we all know he can play, he is a force. That is a good situation to have as an offensive coach."

On Chargers WR Keenan Allen effectiveness:

"He is probably one of the better route runners in the National Football League. His quickness, his suddenness, his ability to sink his hips and get in and out of breaks. When you watch him move, his ankles – I hate to say it that way – but his ankles are like he can stop and move and go in another direction really quickly and stay at full speed. He is a good player, really is."

On what makes Chargers CB Casey Hayward one of the league's better cornerbacks:

"Competes. He is a Pro Bowl corner. He competes. He gets his hands on balls. He is always contesting catches. I think he studies the game. I think he is probably a really good student of the game and understands what offensive teams are trying to do. He makes plays."

On if he still has family in Los Angeles and if he plans to see them this weekend:

"A ton. Honestly not. I'm trying not to. There will be some people that come to the game, I'm sure, but this is really about the team. I try to do everything I can to make sure that I keep our team up and going, our coaches and everybody who comes on our trip. That is what it is all about. The summers and those times are times for me to get with my family and friends and all of that. We have a game play. Like I told our guys, this is a business trip. We will come back to L.A. another time during the summer and have some fun, but right now, we have to go try to find a way to win a football game."

On if he has seen the StubHub Center before:

"I have been there. I haven't seen it since they made it the way it is – I have not."

On if he has made a decision on the backup QB this week:

"Honestly, I haven't yet. Those guys are practicing and have done what they have done. I will [make the decision] tomorrow at some point."

On weighing who will be the backup QB:

"The system, what we are trying to accomplish this week. Both of those guys have different strengths and things that they do well. If our gameplan is trying to do certain things and I think the one fits a little bit better than the other, then we will do it that way."

On QB Cody Kessler's strengths:

"Cody obviously has played. He has played more football as a backup quarterback for us and as a quarterback for us. His experience and being in the system, those are things that he understands. Obviously, (QB) Kevin (Hogan) has done some good things, too, some really good things this year – both of these guys, but obviously, Cody has played a little bit more. You asked me what was his strength: the fact that he has played in games."

On Kessler taking multiple sacks:

"He has been in some tough situations. He really has. Obviously, he wants to get the ball out of his hands. He hasn't been able to do that. He has to improve in that area, there is no question about that."

On Jake Plummer mentioning his name for Arizona State's head coaching job and how he feels about his name being mentioned in respect to another position:

"First of all, I have a lot of respect for Jake. Jake played quarterback for me. I don't follow all of that, just so you know, but I'm not worried about those things. It is always good to have your name thrown places, but my goal and what I want to accomplish is I want to help turn around this organization. That is what I came here for. I'm not running from this. It doesn't feel good or look good – I have said that before. We are going to win here. I truly believe that. That is what I came here for. We just have to go do the things that we need to do to get this organization headed in the right direction. Hopefully, I am going to be a huge part of that and for a long time. That is what I believe and that is what I feel. That is what I'm doing right now, coaching these Cleveland Browns to get better."

On balancing a business trip with letting players enjoy a night on Friday:

"I think it is really important when you take a trip like this is not to go put them in a hotel and treat them like they are inmates or something like that. I don't think that is right. I want to be able to trust our guys. I was able to do that when we went to London, but I think they know and I make it crystal clear what I expect and how it is going to be. I think when you do that as a leader, it is easier for people to follow that. They know what the expectation is and they get an opportunity because they don't have to just eat there in the hotel. To be able to go somewhere else and have dinner where you want to have dinner, decide you want to go to a movie, if there is a sporting event there that you would like to go to, I want them to feel free that they can do that and have a normal Friday night for themselves, but there is bed check and there is a next morning wake-up call. There are meetings and those things that you have to be ready for. That is my expectation for our team."

On if the team's practice on Saturday at USC will be different than a normal Saturday practice in Berea:

"No sir. It will not be."

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