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Mike Pettine press conference - 10/16

On DB Tashaun Gipson and DB Joe Haden being listed as out for Sunday's game:

"Yeah, that's tough to have two guys that are Pro Bowl guys not out there for you, but we're confident in the depth in the room, and we've gotten a lot of quality reps with those guys. I thought (DB) Jordan Poyer stepped up last week and played very well, got a game ball against Baltimore. (DB) Pierre's (Desir) done some good things and he's relentless in his preparation. It's never ideal when you're down guys, but you're confident in the depth and how those guys prepare."

On if Haden is in the building:


On how important it is to be patient with the running game this week:

"It is, but we still can't just think run first. I think we still have to have balance, but the task for us is when we call a run, we have to execute it. We have to run well. That's the tool we're going to use to stay ahead of the sticks. You run the ball on first down – you don't want to be staring at second-and-10. You have to find that middle ground. If you're continually going to it and it's not working and you have to look elsewhere – what happened against Baltimore, but we returned to the run later in the game when I think we loosened them up and we were able to have some success – it's a feel thing as the game goes on for Flip (offensive coordinator John DeFilippo), but it is a priority this week against a group that rushes the passer this well."

On if being concerned with the running game with RB Isaiah Crowell listed as questionable for Sunday:

"It helps us that we're likely to have (RB Robert) Turbin going. I'll be curious to see how that plays out, but it's nice to have that depth in the room."

On how Turbin did in his first practice with pads:

"He was fine. Looked good."

On how important turnovers are against the Broncos:

"I said to the team, 'When you play a team like this when they're playing at a high level, they truly minimize your margin for error, and there's no bigger error in football than a turnover.' To me, you have to value your possessions and we have to do a great job protecting the football. I know it's something every week, but against a team like this and against a quarterback like this, you have to maximize your possessions and minimize theirs."

On the performance of the Browns OLBs:

"I think we've done some good things with that group. They've also – and they know it – contributed to some of the issues that we've had. I think (LB) Tank (Carder) did some good things in Baltimore in his reps that he got in there. (LB Christian) Kirksey' has played some good football for us. (LB) Craig's (Robertson) injury was very unfortunate just because he was playing extremely well, look forward to getting him back. (LB) Karlos (Dansby) is a guy, too, he knows overall that defense has to raise their level of play especially against an opponent like this."

On if switching LBs implies he is not getting what he wants out of certain players:

"That's one way to read into it, but it's also a young guy (LB Nate Orchard) that we think is capable and we want to see him get out – there's no substitute for live reps. It's hard, talking about the outside backer position, it's hard to be a guy that plays every snap because defending the run takes so much out of you, and then when it comes time in the fourth quarter and you need a pass rush, if the tank is getting empty, then that's going to be troublesome. We like the depth we have in that room, and I think we're doing a good job using it."

On LB Paul Kruger returning to the rush linebacker role:

"I don't know if his role has changed significantly. I just think upping the reps and Jimmy O' (defensive coordinator Jim O'Neil) packaging who's in when will dictate that. Paul's a guy that we work his reps backwards – start him at third down for sure, and then work him in and have him job share on early downs. I don't see his role changing significantly."

On how QB Josh McCown's ankle was this week:

"He was fine. He was fine. We were mindful of it, and he's logged a lot of reps so the stuff that we asked him to do he was able to do it."

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