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Ravens Wednesday Transcripts

Posted Dec 13, 2017

RAVENS WEDNESDAY TRANSCRIPTS: Week 15 at browns

Head Coach John Harbaugh, RB Alex Collins, QB Joe Flacco, CB Marlon Humphrey & OLB Terrell Suggs

(The transcript of Browns head coach Hue Jackson’s call with Baltimore media is also below.)

Head Coach John Harbaugh

Opening statement: “Good to see everybody – appreciate you guys being here. We’re working hard and getting ready for Sunday.”

What has it meant to you the way RB Alex Collins has really taken that job, reaching, and getting better and better with it? What has that meant to this offense? (Pete Gilbert) “It’s been a big plus for us. Alex has done a great job, and ‘Buck’ [Javorius Allen] has done a great job, too – Danny [Woodhead], all of our running backs have. But, Alex has been electric. He has made some plays after contact; he has made plays in the passing game; he has been explosive and scored touchdowns. He’s been a difference-maker for us. It’s been really good.”

Has it been interesting for you to get to know RB Alex Collins as a person? He seems like a unique individual from what we can tell. How has that side of it been for you? (Childs Walker) “Right – same thing you see, I’m sure. He has a great personality – just a wonderful guy, very humble personality, has a good heart for people and is great with kids. We had a group in here yesterday, the choir from [Baltimore’s] Cardinal Shehan [School]. All of our guys are great, but Alex does a great job with the kids. He was showing them how to dance and different things like that. Actually, he played the keyboard for them. They had a keyboard in there. And who knew he can play the keyboard, too? It was pretty neat.”

Have you watched any of his lacrosse highlights? (Jeff Zrebiec) “I have not. Does he have some skills? What was he – a ‘middie’ [midfielder]? He has to be a ‘middie,’ right, with his speed?” (Reporter: “He ran every play. He would take the face-off, and then just take it up himself!”) “Where’s he from?” (Reporter: “Florida.”) “Not to be a lacrosse snob or anything here, but we have to see him in Maryland, and see how he fares.” (laughter)

How has this Cleveland team changed, other than the addition of WR Josh Gordon, since you saw them the first time? (Bo Smolka) “It’s a good question. I think they’ve gotten better. You look at them … They just continue to do a good job of working hard and getting better at what they do every single day. They’ve lost some players – that’s hurt them – but they have [Myles] Garrett back; he’s a factor on defense. They’ve really solidified under [defensive coordinator Gregg] Williams, what they’re doing on defense. They have the package; it’s a very tough package. They’re executing it really well. They’re No. 1 in the league against the run. Run defense-wise has done a great job with that. It’s structured, but it’s also … They’re physical; they play really hard. They run to the ball really, really well. It’s a very hard-playing defense. Offensive line has been really solid. The three inside guys – the two guards and the tackle – are highly-paid guys. They’re proven guys, they’re starters, and they’re playing that way. [DeShone] Kizer has gotten better. He continues to improve and run the offense; he makes a lot of plays downfield. I think they have 50 big-play passes so far this year. They have young receivers and tight ends, running backs – both of them, especially Duke Johnson. He gets loose in the passing game a lot. They’re an explosive offense the way they’re built right now.”

RB Isaiah Crowell didn’t do much against you in the first game, but he’s gotten better. What kind of challenges does he pose? (Todd Karpovich) “He does. He’s done well against us in the past, too. He’s been there, I think, for three years now. He’s a hard-running, downhill guy, NFL-style back. He runs both of their packages. They have the gun runs with him – he and Duke Johnson both. But, they also have all the downhill runs that he does so well. It’s going to be a challenge for us. It’s a team that’s committed to running the ball, and we’re going to have to stop the run.”

How impressive has it been to see WR Josh Gordon on tape – a three-year layoff to come in and make a big impact? (Luke Jones) “I’m just not into ranking that stuff. I just don’t really look at it that way. He’s playing for them. He’s a talented guy. He’s No. 12.  He’s out there, and we have to defend what he does, where Hue [Jackson] lines him up, what he does with him, how he utilizes him. He’s a big-play threat, a big ranging receiver and can go up and make plays on the ball. We’re going to have to deal with him that way.”

Will you treat WR Josh Gordon and approach him much like Steelers WR Antonio Brown? (Jerry Coleman) “I’m not following the question.” (Reporter: “Will you treat Gordon like a receiver, such as Antonio Brown in that category?”) “He’ not anything like Antonio Brown, style-wise. He’s a different type of receiver. It’s really probably not a strong analogy.” (Reporter: “As far as double-teaming …”) “We’ll get the gameplan the way we decide to do it, based on how we think we’ll defend our guys the best. I think we can leave that one alone – if that would be alright with you?”

Is there a stigma when you play a winless team, knowing how much they want to win one, and how much you guys want to avoid being that one team? (David Ginsburg) “No, we don’t think of it like that. We’re trying to win a game. Really, that’s all there is to it. We have a very tough opponent that we have to play. Their motivation, or whatever it might be, is really not any concern of ours. It’s our motivation that we’re concerned with. We have a lot to play for. We need to go play our best game. We expect to get their best game, but we expect that every week from everybody we play. We need to prepare to go play our best game, and that’s what we’re planning to do.”

With the injuries to OLB Matthew Judon and OLB Za’Darius Smith, how will that impact the depth at edge rushers? (Ed Lee) “I’m not really aware of their injuries right now. What are their injuries?” (Reporter: “Za’Darius was banged-up with a shoulder injury last week, and Matthew had leg cramps.”) “It’s not a concern.” (Reporter: “What about Chris Moore?”) “We’ll see.”

RB Alex Collins

On how he would describe his running style: “I would characterize it, depending on the situation that I am in. I try to have a different style, and I try to bring something different to the table every time to just give an opponent something different to look at. Just depending on the situation … If it is a short-yardage type of situation, I like to be more of an aggressive type of runner, shoulders down [and] getting downhill more often. But, if it is a pitchout in the outside and I am in the open field, then I try to be more of an elusive back. I just try to switch it up to give the defense more of something to look at.”

On if he has always had the same running style or if it is something that has been a work in progress: “It is definitely something that has been a work in progress and something that I push myself to improve on. My running backs coaches from college to when I was in Seattle to here now with [Thomas] Hammock, they do a good job of bringing it out of me and pushing me further and always trying to get me to reach that peak. I’ll do great, and then I’ll get into the room after a great performance and coach [Hammock] will be like, ‘Oh, you thought I was going to pat you on the back? No, we are about to push a little bit further.’ He does a great job of keeping me going, and we just sit down and watch the film together and just really look at things I need to work on and improve. I am just always trying to get better.”

On if defenses have began to approach him any differently: “Yes, they all approach it differently, but the one thing that I am mostly looking at is the scheme and the offensive line and the fullback and the tight ends and really keying on their blocks and really just looking at our offensive scheme. I don’t really … Depending on certain plays, if I am reading the linebacker, I’ll read the linebacker. If I have to read the [defensive] end on this play, that will be my main focus. But then I will get in the open field, and that is when I really get to feel like a DB or a safety. I will say the first five yards to scrimmage, I am really reading my guys, but then after I get past that and break through the hole, that is when I really am trying get to get a feel for the safeties and DBs and see what I have to do to make them miss and get by them.”

On if he feels that a switch flips and he runs with anger: “Most definitely. I try to let that be known from the beginning to always have that 110-percent effort. That is one of my things. Sometimes, I will run out on the sideline, but most of the time, I like to finish and let them know what type of game this is going to be. I like to put my stamp on it just to let the other team know that it is about to be a long game. My team does it as well. The offensive line, the tight ends – we all have that aggressive, angry mindset, and we try to play with this relentlessness and try to finish opponents and break their wills. We all have that same mindset going into it and just seeing everybody feed off each other. I see a nice pancake, and I am getting fueled up like it is time for me [to shine]. We just fuel off each other, so that is how we all go in the game.”

On if lacrosse or Irish dancing has been better for his footwork: “I would say a little bit of both. My high school football coach – he did a lot with that as well. Most coaches would want an athlete to just stick with football coming out of high school, but he was just more [saying], ‘See what else is out there and get a feel.’ So, I played a lot of sports coming out, like running track helping with the stamina, lacrosse helping with open field awareness and the vision and everything else. Every little thing that could possibly help me outside of football, I was interested in trying to see if it could help me, like with the Irish dancing and the lacrosse. Anything I can do that could make me a little bit better, I got my hands into it.”

On playing piano: “I actually learned how to play in eighth grade. I had a piano class, and from that class, I just remembered all the notes and the keys, and any song that I like or think that I could play on the piano, I would look at a little tutorial and pick it up.”

On when he first began to have migraines and if it bothers him during games: “I have been dealing with it all my life. I have had this migraine problem for a while, like since high school, it records back. Just throwing up before the games and having to play through it … I am used to playing with them and dealing with it. Some are a little more severe than others, but for the most part, I would push through it. The dark visor has really done a lot, and it has helped me over the past few weeks. I haven’t had it at all; I have not dealt with it. I would get a little slight headache here and there, but for the most part, from wearing a dark visor, it does a good job. I have it in practice, and I am able to run full speed out there.”

On when he started wearing the dark visor: “I wear it all the time in practice, but I did not get approved for it until about the second or third game after the preseason.”

On if there is a danger in playing a winless team: “Yes, these guys, they are good athletes. No team steps on the field expecting to lose, so I definitely know they are going to be coming for us, and we are just going to do the same thing going into this game, preparing how we prepared for those guys. We already watched the film, watched the mistakes, and we are just going to keep trying to improve and try to get the ‘W’ this weekend.”

On his mindset when Seattle released him: “What I was thinking was: I’m just a really passionate person, and I put my all into it. I like to consider myself the hardnosed worker, not complain about much. I just put my head down, and I work hard. Whatever it is I’m told to do, I try to do that and more. I didn’t change anything up, actually, when I got here. I stuck with the same routine that I’ve had since high school, since college, to get my mindset right. That’s just right place, right time, kind of thing. It’s coming here, just sticking with it, sticking with what I believe in, just working hard and facing adversity. You have to persevere through some things. A lot of people’s roads to getting to where they want to be in their careers aren’t easy. Everybody has to face a little bit of adversity – especially when you’re passionate about something or you want to be great at something. You just get over the hump, and the next time you face one … ‘I’ve been here before. I’ve been in this situation before.’ You go back to what you know and what you believe in to get yourself through it. That’s what I did.’

On how dark his visor is: “It’s like playing in the shade all the time. What really activates the migraines is just … When everyone looks at the sun, you have to put your hand over your eyes to block the sun, and you have to squint your eyebrows. For most people, that doesn’t bother them – they’re just blocking the sun. But for me, that strain is what stimulates the migraine. Just from straining my eyes trying to focus on something, and playing out there at that speed, just straining and trying so hard to block out the sun is when the migraines really come in. But, when I’m able to play with a relaxed face out there, just reading my keys and doing what I need to be doing without that strain on my eyes, then the migraines don’t happen.”

QB Joe Flacco

On if it is a difficult spot to play a team that has not won a game: “I have not really thought about that. It is just another game against the Browns for us. Like you said, it is always a tough opponent. We have a lot at stake right now, so we are really just worrying about winning the football game.”

On how much of a benefit RB Alex Collins has been to the team and if he marvels at the fact that Collins fell in the Ravens’ lap: “Yes, a lot of teams find runners in a lot of places, and we obviously got fortunate with Alex. The speed that he is bringing to our football team and to our running game right now has definitely been huge.”

On targeting WR Jeremy Maclin 11 times at Pittsburgh and if there is something missing on the field with the two of them: “I think you just have to look at it as individual things and see what went wrong. There are little things. I can think of one of the targets on third down, and his rule is to run out, and I am about to get hit by [T.J.] Watt on the left side – I am really just throwing the ball away. You have to look at every one of those as its own entity and see what the reason for it was. There are definitely some things we can work on, but I wouldn’t overreact to it.”

On if there was a circumstance where he decided to change the play at the line of scrimmage on the Ravens’ second to last drive: “No.”

On if the Ravens are in a position he would like for them to be in at this point in the season: “Yes. Obviously, you can be in better situations, but we definitely are fortunate and are very hungry and feel very good about where we are. Obviously, like I said, it could be better for us at this point, but we are excited about the opportunity.”

On if he feels like the offense is building and getting to where it needs to be even after a loss: “We played a really good football team up there [in Pittsburgh] and had a chance to win the football game. As disappointed as we are about that, there are definitely some things to take from that and feel positive about.”

On why he thinks things have been better with the offense lately: “We have been in good rhythm. The last two opponents, we have been hitting them in every way, kind of spreading them out early and being able to run the second half on them and be able to wear them out physically. I think our line is really starting to come together and play really well and that helps a lot.”

On how he gets any holiday shopping done as an NFL quarterback in December: “That is why I have a wife. (laughter) I’m not doing it. I am not very good at that stuff anyway. You have to give a lot of credit to her [Dana Flacco] and what she does at home and taking care of all of that and beyond.”

On if there is anything the team can do to be more effective on third down: “Well, when you look at the other night, we barely had any third downs until late in the game. Yes, there can be things that happen on third-and-long that can definitely improve our chances. And even in third-down [offense], we can be better for sure. I think the other night we did a good job of keeping ourselves out of third-down situations, to be honest with you, and we were pretty decent throughout the game. We could have been really good if we just would have hit on two things that we really felt we could have.”

On what happened on his interception on the first drive: “That was just late down the middle. [Jeremy Maclin] kind of popped open, but it kind of happened a tick late, and I kind of saw him do that, and for some reason … It was a bad decision.”

On if he is surprised by WR/RS Chris Moore’s emergence as a receiver: “Not really. Chris is a really good player. The fact that he has been out there and doing it for a couple of weeks now, he is really starting to feel that groove and get that confidence. You can see it. That is what it is all about. You have to go out there in this league and prove to yourself and your teammates that you can do it. When you are finally able to break through and do that, then you can always take off to another level. I think we are starting to see that with him.”

On if he has noticed changes from the Browns when watching film: “Teams, as the year goes on, they go in and out of phases of doing certain things. These guys are a good defense. They have been for many years. They don’t always … Maybe week-in and week-out, sometimes, they give up some points here and there. But they are a really good group of guys and play well together, and it is going to be a tough test for us for sure. I think their defensive coordinator [Gregg Williams] does some specific things and has those guys playing really well.”

On if he thought about having to deal with Browns DE Myles Garrett right away after Cleveland drafted him No. 1 overall: “Yes, we play them twice a year, so it is a little bit different. But these days pretty much every team has a guy that they want to do similar things with out on the end like that. I am sure as he gets more games under his belt here late in the season, he will be a test for many years to come. You do not really think too much about it as a quarterback, to be honest with you, just because, like I said, every team has those guys that at some point you have to worry about.”

On if he almost becomes a fan for a couple of seconds when watching RB Alex Collins play, such as when Collins had a 37-yard gain on a swing pass: “It is interesting. Maybe not on that play necessarily. I don’t even know what happened on that play. He might have just got a little lucky there. He kept his head down, and the one thing he did not do was run out of bounds. The time you become a fan is when you are handing the ball off and he is running the ball inside and setting things up and being patient and hitting the hole really hard. Like I said, that one play was a little bit of a weird circumstance, but when you hand the ball off to him and you get to watch him run a little bit, he is an impressive young man, and we are definitely happy to have him around here.”

On how important it is to get the tight ends involved in the passing game: “It is important. It is important to get Ben [Watson] involved. I don’t know how many snaps he had. Our other tight ends, you have to realize, they are carrying a big-time load in the run game. Getting them a pass here or there will definitely help us out, but it is obviously not the priority. Getting Ben involved will definitely be huge for our offense. You can see what happens when he gets going a little bit, so it will be nice to make that happen.”

CB Marlon Humphrey

On if his performance against the Steelers boosts his confidence going forward: "Yes, confidence is key at corner. You can never really lose it when you’re a cornerback. It’s one of the most important things. Whether you’re going against the best or the worst – you always have to treat everybody the same and have a high-level of confidence, because playing at that position, you’re going to give up some [plays], and you’re going to make a lot. You have to have confidence, whether you make a good play or make a bad play.”

On if he learned at the University of Alabama that you can’t be overconfident, no matter whom you’re playing: “Definitely. At ‘Bama, we played a lot of teams that we definitely should easily run over. The difference between then and now [is] just about every team we played, you can really be beat. Any team can beat you in the NFL – that’s one of the things that I learned pretty quickly. You go into a game and you think, ‘Oh, we should beat this team,’ then you end up coming up short, and you’re like, ‘Why?’ It’s never a guaranteed win in the NFL. You have to treat every team the same, no matter what their record is.”

On if he got a sense that some of his defensive teammates were ticked-off after Sunday’s loss to the Steelers and will ratchet up this week: “Definitely. I think everybody was a little bit down after that loss. We felt like we had them. We came in yesterday, and I was a little down, looking at some of the guys. The children [Cardinal Shehan choir] that came and sang to us, they really kind of … They were singing a song called ‘Rise Up,’ and I was feeling pretty down – I knew some of my teammates were – and they were singing it, and it made me smile. It made me think a little bit. Football, right now, is my occupation, but it’s not everything. Winning and losing isn’t everything. They definitely made me feel a lot better. I was very grateful that coach [John] Harbaugh let them come and sing to us. It kind of put us in some good spirits.”

On his impressions of playing his first game in Heinz Field: “I loved it! I run out there, and the first thing I hear is, ‘‘29’ you’re scared already!’ I love that kind of stuff. The amount of times I heard, ‘Antonio Brown is going to kill you today,’ was just unreal. I love that. The ‘F-yous’ and ‘you suck’ – that’s why I love away games. (laughter) I can play more clear when there’s a lot of hate and feel the energy like that. After the game [when] we lost, I just ran straight off [the field]. I was just like, ‘God, we let them get one.’ I love Heinz Field, and can’t wait to win one there.”

On what he is taking from his experience covering Steelers WR Antonio Brown and applying it the Browns and potentially WR Josh Gordon: “Antonio Brown is one of the best, clearly. But, Josh Gordon is a little bit different. He seems like more of a bigger guy, the jump-ball guy, a little shake at the line, things like that. [He’s] another elite receiver. The Browns have some pretty good receivers with [Corey] Coleman and Gordon. It’ll be another good challenge for us this week. Their record doesn’t say much, but their skill players are definitely very, very elite.”

On how impressive it has been to see WR Josh Gordon performing highly after a long layoff: “It’s definitely crazy how he’s been able to not play for three years and then comes out going against [Casey] Hayward and the Chargers, making plays like that. When a guy can do that, he probably hasn’t even shown how really good he can be again. We definitely have to be aware for him. We’ll see how the calls go, but he’s definitely someone we have to keep an eye on.”

OLB Terrell Suggs

On how much they are itching to get back out on the field to show that Sunday’s performance was an aberration: “Last week was disappointing, but if you don’t move on fast, it’s a high possibility that you can drop a level. So yes, we’re disappointed, but like you said, nothing’s more important to us right now than the Cleveland Browns. Sunday will get here soon enough. We have some things we need to fix, we have some guys banged up [that] we’re trying to get healthy. We’re going to take our time and get there, and when Sunday gets here, we’ll be ready to play.”

On remembering the “trap” of playing a winless team: “Absolutely – against Miami [in 2007]. Ed Reed jumped Cover 2. ‘Quick.’” (Reporter: “Can you relate [that game and this upcoming game] together?”) “Not really. We know who this team is. I always called them a ‘brawler.’ They always match up really well against us, and you know, [they have] Hue Jackson. Hue Jackson is always a wild card. He’s going to have some kind of gadget, some kind of circus prepared for us. We’re going to be looking for that. They do some things with the zone read; we’re going to be looking at that. The sooner we can get it to a football game, the better it is.”

On if he remembers Dolphins QB Cleo Lemon: “I remember the whole play. We just called the play, and Ed Reed … You know, nine out of 10 times, he’s right. He was just wrong on that one, on an 80-yard slant to the crib. But hey – that’s history, that’s past. We [are] looking forward to playing some football.”

On if he didn’t bring up that Miami game to his teammates because they know the Browns, and those games are always close: “You know what? I didn’t bring it up. Maybe it’s something to put in their head. We’re all competitors. We expect Cleveland’s best shot. They always play us tough. It’s going to be a good game, so we’re just looking forward [to it]. We’re not taking them lightly.”

On if it was an embarrassing feeling to lose to an 0-13 team in 2007, and something they could pull from this time knowing how he felt then: “What do you think?” (Reporter: “I don’t know.”) “You don’t want to lose period. You don’t want to lose period. It’s that simple. You don’t want to lose. But like I said, this is a divisional opponent. We’re not playing an opponent here … They’re going to show up to play. It’s going to be an AFC North division football game, and that’s what we expect. So come on man, you’re better than that.”

On if he is seeing anything different in QB DeShone Kizer compared to their first matchup: “Definitely. The only good way to learn how to play NFL football is to play NFL football. He was in the second game of his career [when we faced him in Week 2]. So yes, naturally, he has gotten better. He’s made some better decisions with the ball, and like I said, they’re going to be ready to play.”

On what WR Josh Gordon brings to Cleveland’s offense: “He’s just another explosive weapon. You put an explosive weapon like that in a Hue Jackson offense – it could be catastrophic for the defense. We’re attending to all of that.”

On how excited he is for the “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” premiere: “I’m ecstatic.”

CLEVELAND BROWNS CONFERENCE CALL

(with Baltimore Media)

Head Coach Hue Jackson

Can you talk about how difficult this season has been as you are still in search for your first win? (Ed Lee) “It’s frustrating, but at the same time, we know that each week is a new opportunity. That’s what we have to look forward to, and that’s what our guys work towards every week.”

As you’re working on a gameplan against RB Alex Collins, what struck you about his running style? (Childs Walker) “Oh man, he’s stronger than people think, he makes great runs – really good runs. He has the ability to make something out of nothing. He’s been a really, really big surprise, I’m sure, for their football team and for the league.”

In terms of seeking your first win, is that motivation for the players? (Ed Lee) “I think we’re motivated every week. It’s been 13 of these, and we haven’t had an opportunity to taste victory yet. I think every week we go out there, I think we’re motivated to have the opportunity to go win a football game.”

Do you feel as the weeks have been passing that your guys have been getting better? You had a two-touchdown lead last week. Do you feel that you’re on the brink? (David Ginsburg) “I think we’re working at it – I know that. This league is tough. It’s hard to win in the league. I think we all get that. Every week presents a different challenge. This is going to be one of our toughest challenges, because this is one of the better teams in the National Football League, and we get that. We don’t know when it’s going to break through, but we know at some point and time it will.”

What kind of strides have you seen out of QB DeShone Kizer? (Jeff Zrebiec) “Well, I think he … Again, he’s a young player, he’s working at it extremely hard. I think there’s weeks that things are better, there’s weeks where things have to be corrected, and we need to continue to push forward. It was one of his better statistical games this past week. He just has to keep growing from it. I do see growth, but again, he has to continue to be consistent as he goes through this growth spurt.”

The Ravens gave up over 500 passing yards last week. Is that a sign of vulnerability or more of a case of QB Ben Roethlisberger being in one of those zones that he can get into? (Jeff Zrebiec) “I think you said it. I think we’ve all seen Ben do that from time to time. We’ve all seen times when Baltimore’s able to shut him down. That’s just an old school rivalry game, and anything could happen. It could be Baltimore throws for a lot or Pittsburgh throws for a lot, Baltimore runs for a lot or Pittsburgh runs for a lot. So, I don’t take a lot of stock in that. I’ve been involved in those games and know how competitive they are. Watching the score, 38-39, that’s one of those Baltimore-Pittsburgh games. Whether it’s 12-13 or 38-39 – that’s just the way happens. I don’t look at it that way. I know this is a really good defensive football team, led by Terrell Suggs, and they’re going to be here playing their best football this weekend.”

It did seem that QB Ben Roethlisberger took advantage of the Ravens’ defense, particularly in the middle with their tight ends. Is that something that you guys think you can take advantage of on Sunday? (Ed Lee) “We like to take any advantage that we can. If that is something that is going to be an advantage, we are going to try to take advantage of it, I promise you that. We are looking for any place and anywhere that we are able to match up with the Baltimore Ravens and have an opportunity to have success.”

You know John Harbaugh well and this would be a game with you guys being winless that perhaps another team might come in being overconfident. I am assuming you won’t expect that from the Ravens. (David Ginsburg) “No, I won’t. That is not John’s style. John is a week-to-week guy. Last week is over. He knows this is the National Football League. They are playing a pro team at our venue, our stadium, so he is going to have those guys ready to go.”

I know this is not an original question, but from the outside … For WR Josh Gordon to do what he has already done after such a long layoff, did you expect something like this? (Jeff Zrebiec) “I did not know exactly how fast it would happen. Obviously, he had to do it in games. I just know what I saw in practice. The guy has the potential to be one of the better players in the league, and now that he has played in games and has put it on tape week-in and week-out for two weeks now, you see that this guy is a special player. And if he continues to do the things that he needs to do, then he has a chance to get back to where he once was.”

What have you seen from TE Seth DeValve and TE David Njoku? (Ed Lee) “I think they are young players that are getting better. Obviously, this is Seth’s second year and David’s first year, but they are very young and talented players. Their best football is still ahead of them, and they still have work to do in order to get there.”

You mention trying to get every advantage you can. In the NFL, you hope to have homefield advantage. You do have a passionate fanbase, who has obviously not been pleased with what they have seen. How would you rate your homefield advantage, given what your fans have been through? (Mark Viviano) “I think our fans have been outstanding. I think what they have been through is tough. We have not put the best product out on the field, and I think we get that, and I think we are trying to do everything we can as we move forward to get where we need to be that way to give our fans something to yell and scream and get excited about. We are very happy that our fans have stuck with us, that they have been there for us, and they have done everything they can to try to get us over this hump.”

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