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Hue Jackson press conference - 9/14

Opening statement:

"First of all, I would like to take this opportunity to thank our fans. The last two days, we have had a (Cleveland Browns Foundation) Radiothon, where the goal is to raise $135,000. We were able to do that. That is tremendous support by our fans, and I thank them. Obviously, to have Dee and Jimmy (Haslam) match that total that means there is $270,000 that was raised in a two-day period. That is outstanding, and I really thank them for that.

"It is really exciting to be at home. I am really looking forward to our crowd, the Dawg Pound and everybody who is going to be there screaming and yelling because it is our home opener. We firsthand got to experience a home opener on the road last week, and we hope to have our fans be there and yelling and screaming for our football team because we need them. They bring the energy. We plan on bringing the energy, but boy, they sure bring the extra energy. I know my time coming in that stadium as a visiting coach what it felt like. The fans are spectacular. Whether you are pulling into the stadium where sometimes there were some choice words said or there are times when you are in the stadium so I want our fans to come and be on the edge of their seats. We understand we have to do our part and give them something to yell and scream for and get excited about. That is what we plan on doing."

On how beneficial it is for QB Robert Griffin III to be on the field supporting his teammates:

"It is great to have him out there. I think it is great to be around his teammates. I'm sure they need to be around him. It is unfortunate it happened, but those things happen. It is just part of it. He will grow from it and learn from it, and he will, too."

On if QB Kevin Hogan will be moved to the active roster:

"No, I have not made that decision yet. I think it is a little too early. We have to let these guys work and see where we are. We have a plan in place in case we needed a third quarterback. I think I got a pretty good one on the roster. I just stashed him away a little bit. He is doing other things. I'm sure you guys will figure that one out, but we will be OK. Thank you, I appreciate that."

On if the Browns could be beneficial against QB like Joe Flacco with so many unknown players to him, given his comment he only recognizes DB Joe Haden:

"I don't know if it a benefit (laughter). Joe is a seasoned veteran player. He looks for certain things. I'm sure he knows who (DB) Joe Haden is. He has seen Joe and competed against Joe many a times. My plan is that I hope he gets to know some of the other guys here by Sunday, up close and personal possibly, but I know Joe. Joe is scouring every bit of tape that we have had to find any opportunity to do whatever he can do to help his football team. We are young. I think we all know that. At the same time, we feel good about the guys that are back there playing."

On if emphasized to QB Josh McCown about the importance of protecting himself this weekend:

"No question. We want our quarterbacks to be aggressive but be smart. It is unfortunate about what happened, but that is part of this game. You have to be team protecting. I have said that from Day 1 at the quarterback position. Like I said earlier, I think that Robert truly was trying to be. It is just unfortunate. I hope you guys have seen the play. It wasn't like the guys thought it was. Those things are going to happen in the National Football League. We hope that Josh will be very protecting of himself and of his team. We give him that directive all the time so I'm sure he will be. I think he will play the game with the thought process that I am going to be aggressive, but I also understand that there is a time to say 'uncle' and not take this chance."

On DB Derrick Kindred on Sunday in Philadelphia:

"I saw a guy, as I've said a lot of times in here, that the game is not too big for him. He is tough. He made one of the best tackles I've seen on the tape in the game on a running back. He fills holes. He flies around. He plays the game the way it is supposed to be played. He just needs more game experience. He is a young player learning how to play in the National Football League. We are really excited about his future."

On if he approaches this week any differently as a coach for his first division game:

"I don't, but I do make a mention of that because I think it is important. First thing, if we are going to be a good football team, you have to win within your division. You have to try and win your division. First and foremost, I think that is very important. These count as two games in my opinion. It is a game but it is also a game within the division so it is extra special and important because we get to play these guys twice. Yeah, we do talk about it. I think it is very important."

On differences between the Ravens defense this year and last year:

"They are good. They are playing good. They got their confidence back and they are playing well, but it is what you anticipate from a (Ravens head coach) John Harbaugh coached football team. He is one of the better coaches in the league. He is going to have those guys ready to play. What happened last year is not even close to what I have known Baltimore to be. They have really good players that are well-coached. They know how to play the game. They have good coordinators and great coaches over there. They are a good defensive football team."

On coaching Flacco and if watches Flacco with pride, given the QB's success:

"Oh, I have from afar. I just don't want to see it this week. He is a very talented player. I knew that he was going to be a star in this league. He is big, physical, can throw the ball, any ball you want thrown. He is very bright, and I think people think Joe doesn't have a lot of passion, but he does. He loves to win. He has done a great job. Obviously, he has led that team to a Super Bowl. He is one of the better quarterbacks in the National Football League. I thought that is exactly what he would be. We have to do everything we can on our side defensively to do everything we can to slow him down. This is a quarterback-driven league, and he is one of the better players so we have to do everything we can to take that away from him this weekend."

On challenges facing the Ravens' offensive weapons:

"No, they have the characteristics of a really good offensive football team. They can spread the ball around, a lot of guys touch it so we have to make sure that we are on our Ps and Qs and making sure that we are paying attention to all the little details because he can put the ball in a lot of different people's hands who can make plays with the ball. It is going to be challenging, but last time I checked, they can only put 11 out there. They get 11. We get 11. It is going to be fun."

On his experience working with Ravens General Manager and Pro Football Hall of Fame and former Browns TE Ozzie Newsome:

"Outstanding. Ozzie is obviously an icon in this league in my opinion, not just as one of the better personnel guys in all of pro football but also as a player. He was a tremendous football player here. He has done a great job in Baltimore. You look around every year and there is some great football player they have added to their team. Trust me, it is by no coincidence. Ozzie Newsome has a lot to do with that. My time with him, he taught me some of the ropes of coaching in the National Football League, and I thank him because he and John Harbaugh allowed me to coach their quarterback for a couple years. I have a lot of respect for Ozzie and that whole scouting department that they have over there."

On how QB Kevin Hogan could 'open eyes' through his play on the practice squad, when he is not executing a gameplan:

"Because you will see him do some things on the scout team that kind of correlates to what you are trying to do, so there are a few opportunities there. But is it tough? Yes, it is, but we are going to do whatever we feel we need to do. (QB) Cody (Kessler) is doing some good things. He has really improved. Every player improves with reps. The more chances you get, the better you get. The more you see things, the better you get. Cody has a few more reps this week, and he will and we will be ready to go this weekend."

On if the Browns need to take more risks to give the team an edge:

"I tried that last week I think (laughter). That didn't work out too well, did it (laughter)? I like to do whatever I think I takes to win. I'm for taking risks. I always have been. At the same time, they have to be smart calculated risks. We don't want to just fly by the seat of our pants. We have to make sure if we are, we have to do them right. There is some excitement sometime in that. There is also anxiety in that. We have to handle it. Do I want to be a team that is very aggressive and we take chances? Yes, I do, but that is just my nature. That is kind of the way I'm built, but we have to make sure that they are smart chances and things that give us a chance to win and not help us lose games."

On QB Josh McCown's performances against the Ravens last year and if he has watched the film:

"Yeah, I watched. I don't know if it was the game that made me feel like I feel about him. I said this a long time ago: I think any guy that can stay in this league for 15 years, when you have those kind of skins on the wall that says a lot just right there. Obviously to watch him play in the game a year ago, the way he played was outstanding. I have a lot of respect for Josh, and I think you guys all know that. I'm full-speed ahead with Josh. I think he will go out and play well, extremely well, and help lead our offense and get us to playing football the way we need to play and give us an opportunity. We expect him to do that. That is why we kept him here."

On McCown hanging out with WRs Terrelle Pryor Sr. and Josh Gordon and what that says about McCown, given his age:

"Right, that is who he is. He is about football 24-7. You heard that story, and obviously, he is playing this week, but I think that story has been told many a times. That is just who Josh McCown is and he has been outstanding that way. He is a true competitor. He is a leader. He understands what it takes to play his position. He has seen some of the best do it. He has had some outstanding games, as we all know, and we are looking forward to him leading our offense."

On how much of being a head coach in the NFL is about the week of preparation and how much is about gameday:

"It is everything you said. It is that kind of process. What I told our players about last week, and we kind of did it, is we turned the page. We all balled up a piece of paper and threw it up in the auditorium. Throw it, and we are on to the next one. We can't worry about the past. It is this one. It is about playing Baltimore and working through our process during the week to make sure we are ready to go. Then those three hours, as I said about last week, we just have to be the best team for those three hours. If we can do that and come away with a W, that is what this is all about. Then we are going to ball up some paper again and throw it again and get ready for the next one. That is the way you have to handle this. Everybody sometimes stays stuck in the last game. That game is over with. We don't get that back. We can learn from it, but we don't get it back. We have to move on to this one, and this week we have to be the best team for three hours or three hours and 10 minutes, 20 minutes, however long it takes."

On how important it is for McCown to convert third downs, given his success on third down in 2015:

"It's very important. That is one of the keys to playing quarterback in the National Football League – situational football, when everybody knows you either have to throw it or make a play. Those are the tough downs – scoring zone, third down, two minute, four minute – that is when the quarterbacks are at their best. The real great ones, they have that trait. They can make those plays in that situation and keep an offense on the field. I'm glad you told me that. I didn't know those numbers, but that is what it is all about, and again, he has played. He understands and he has seen a lot of different looks throughout the National Football League so there are not too many things that are going to surprise him." 

On TE Gary Barnidge having an uncharacteristic performance in Week 1 and if he felt the need to say anything to him:

"I think it happens. Did I say something to him? Yeah because I know that is not who he is. He is big-play Gary Barnidge, and obviously, he did not make those plays. I think he was more distraught by it than I was. I know every now and then those things happen. We don't want them to happen to players, but he is human. He is no different than anybody else. Sometimes it just does not go your way. He has to pick himself up, which he has, and go back out and practice your tail off and get yourself ready for the next one. That is again part of that turning the page. We turned that page. It is time for him to go be Gary Barnidge that we all know, love and respect. I think he will do that this weekend."

On his statement to fans to 'hold on:'

"Hold on. That is right. Hold on to this week, you know? This week, we get to do it again."

On if Browns fans can afford to be patient, given the team's past performance:

"I can't worry about what everybody has been through here. I'm being very honest. I think you guys know me, I don't worry about what everybody else has done, been through, what people should not say, what they should say. I am going to do the best job that I can do. That is all Hue Jackson can do. The fans might not like me for a while, but they are going to love me here pretty soon, that's OK (laughter). Eventually, they will love me. I promise you that because I do plan on winning here. I do get it. I know with every loss there is another dagger that just drags you down another few feet deeper. That is OK. I've been there before. I am a fighter so we are going to get back up and we are going to keep swinging. We are going to be fine."

On DL Carl Nassib being listed as a starter on the unofficial depth chart:

"Direct result of a performance. We do not really give anybody nothing. You have to earn it, and he is playing well. He really is. He is doing some good things, and I think any player that plays the game the way we want them to play should be rewarded for that so he is. He is one of the starters on our football team, and I always look forward to watching him play because he plays with a passion, energy and tenacity that I think you have to play this game with."

On how he personally did in Week 1: "Horrible. Anytime we lose, I am doing horrible. I am the leader of this whole deal. There is nothing else. I can't judge myself any other way. It is wins and losses. If I have too many losses at the end, I'll be the first to tell you I did not do well enough. If I have more wins, I'm going to tell you I am OK. I don't know that it is ever going to be good enough until you win the Super Bowl, right? That's what it's all about. It's not about anything else, and that is what I came here for. I didn't come here to be average. I didn't come here just to win a few games and go on about my business. I came here to help this organization win a championship. How fast that is going to happen, I don't know. I don't know if there is going to be a ton of struggle before there are a ton of great times, but I'm not worried about people not being happy right now. I am going to do the best job that I can with our staff and these players, and we are going to keep working at it. My point is eventually they will love me because we are going to win, and we are going to win a championship here for the Cleveland Browns."

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