Bill O'Brien Conference Call Transcript


With Baltimore Media

Head Coach Bill O'Brien

In a lot of the Ravens' wins, they have done a great job of forcing turnovers. Is that a point of emphasis for your team this week? (David Wolf)"Absolutely. I think they have forced 23 turnovers, if I'm not mistaken. I think one of the main emphases – and it really is a point of emphasis every week – is ball security. That is something that against the Ravens, you better make sure you take care of the football. Whoever is carrying the ball, obviously throwing the ball, everything [is important]. That is one of the biggest stats in our game today – that turnover takeaway ratio. We have to do a great job in that area."

The Ravens have several different running backs with different styles of play. Recently, RB Danny Woodhead was activated to the 53-man roster from IR. What is the challenge of facing a number of backs who all have different styles? (David Wolf)"That is a big challenge. You have to really understand the skill set of each guy. I think that when you look at their roster, and when you look at the running back position specifically, you look at a guy like [Alex] Collins versus, let's just say, the name you just mentioned, Danny Woodhead. They are totally different types of backs. I think that you have to make sure you understand which guy is in the game relative to the personnel around him in the game. It is a very challenging part of the game plan for us."

From my understanding, you said CB Kevin Johnson is in concussion protocol. He is a local kid for us around here. I don't want to ask about the concussion or anything, because I know you are not allowed to talk about that, but I was just wondering if you could talk a little bit about the progress of what you have seen from him when he is healthy, and when he has had an opportunity and how frustrating it was last year when he wasn't allowed to play last year because off the injuries. (Jeff Zrebiec)"There is no doubt that we think very highly of Kevin Johnson. First of all, he is just a great guy. He is a great teammate, he cares about winning, and he cares about trying to get better every day. On the field, he is a very active player. He is a great reaction player. He has really good transition, he is a competitive guy, and he is a good tackler. He has had to deal with some injuries. I think he feels better today. We will see how it goes throughout the rest of the week. Obviously, this is a big game for him going back home, but he means a lot to us. We think very highly of Kevin Johnson."

You have game-planned against OLB Terrell Suggs before. What do you think makes him this effective at this age? (Jeff Zrebiec)"I'll tell you, I don't know. I do not think it matters how old he is. He is playing just like he did – I think when I started calling plays against him when I was in New England. He is a very active player. He does a great job of setting the edge. He is a very good pass rush guy. You better know where he is on every play. And they have other guys. They have a bunch of other guys that are playing at a high level – with [Brandon] Williams on the inside and [C.J.] Mosley and [Matthew] Judon. They have a bunch of guys that are … It is going to be very difficult to move the ball against that defense. It is one of the top defenses in the league."

When you look at the Ravens' secondary, I know you mentioned the takeaways, and they are leading the league in interceptions … You have some very good receivers, but how challenging are they at cornerback? Their outside guys like to play physical, and they are very long and physical at the line of scrimmage. (Jeff Zrebiec)"Yes, you said it. When you look at Jimmy Smith and Brandon Carr and Marlon Humphrey, you are talking about guys that are all 6-foot-plus, 200-plus [pounds] and very physical at the line of scrimmage. They make it very difficult on you. They have a defense that has a lot of size relative to each position, and it just makes it very difficult. You are going to have to be ready to get off the line of scrimmage versus press coverage, and then you have to deal with all the different schemes that [defensive coordinator] Dean Pees is going to throw at you. They do a great job in the tradition of the Baltimore Ravens. That is what they are. They are a great defensive team, and we need to be ready for that."

I know you would like for him to take care of the ball better, but do you like the strides that QB Tom Savage has made in recent weeks? (Jeff Zrebiec)"I think he is getting better. I think the game on Sunday is probably the best game he has played since he has been playing for us. He does not have a ton of experience, so every game that he plays, it is really important for him to remember the things that went on during that game, so he can really use that experience to get better every single day and every game. I thought he did a good job of having a short memory on Sunday, and he really made some big plays for us to help us win the game."

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