Ravens Transcripts: Week 5 vs. Redskins (Oct. 5)

Head Coach John Harbaugh

Opening statement: "Good to see everybody. Thanks for being here. It's a beautiful day – just love being out here. The guys worked very hard – very competitive practice. We're working on preparing for Sunday."

**John, can you talk about the decision to release RB Justin Forsett? *(Jamison Hensley) *"It's kind of what we talked about on Monday. I think the question was asked. You do what's best for the team. That's the decisions that are made based on roster options and who is available and what you're trying to do going forward. There are other things involved, too, that didn't come into play here as much – salary cap issues – but that was not a factor here. All things considered, you do what you feel like is best for the team."

That leaves RB Terrance West as your starter. He did very well on Sunday with a lot of carries. How do you like him as the starter? Do you expect to get him a lot of carries? (David Ginsburg) "I expect to get all of the guys as many carries as we can. We want as many plays. We want as many successful runs. We want as many completed passes, just like every team does. I'm hoping to get all of those guys as many carries as possible. How it shakes out, who gets what carries and all of that is kind of unpredictable. We'll have a plan, certainly, in terms of the plays we want to run and how we want to run them. Hopefully, all of those guys … Not hopefully … We expect all of those guys to do well."

Does Justin Forsett's release signal that RB Kenneth Dixon is ready to return? (Jerry Coleman)"Kenneth Dixon is practicing 100 percent. I think that's your answer."

TE/WR Darren Waller is back from suspension. Have you had an early look at him? What has he looked like so far? (Bo Smolka) "He practiced today; first time he's practiced. He hasn't practiced up until today. It's the first practice in a while, so that's kind of how he looked."

What have you seen from TE Daniel Brown that led you to elevating him to the 53-man roster? (Ryan Mink)"Daniel was a guy that was close to start with when we went to the 53- [man roster] at the end of training camp. He's only gotten better. In the last four weeks, he's practiced well. He might be able to help us on special teams as well. He's been doing a good job [and] had another really good day out here on special teams. He deserves it."

Do you get any extra sense of rivalry from the fans when you guys play Washington? (Childs Walker) "I don't really hear too much about it from the fans. You're talking about out and about in the world when I'm walking around and going to my daughter's games? When we played them? We're just getting ready to play a football game that's a really important football game to us. It's a game that we need to win in our house – period. It's a one-week league, as one of our players just said to our team. It's a one-week league, and the only thing we have to think about right now is this game, playing this team and what they do. Of course, it's a team we have respect for. We know what we're going to get with physicality and all of that stuff. We know how they play, and we respect them. We're concerned about us. We're concerned about how we play, how we execute, how we do what we do. We need to take care of us and play really well. That's what we're working on. That's what we're thinking about."

Getting back to RB Terrance West, what did he do on Sunday to be successful? (David Ginsburg)"Terrance is a hard runner, and he has some physicality to him. He ran the ball, put a foot in the ground and got the ball up field, which is what good backs do. I thought he did a good job of that. Certainly, he can get better, and there are plenty of things that we're working on to get him better."

Second-guessing is going around Baltimore because of what happened with Buck Showalter and your decision with the field goal last weekend. Is this just the territory with the fans? How do you handle it when you hear pundits second-guessing professionals? (Jerry Coleman)"That's a great question. It really is a good question. (laughter) I'm happy to hear that. I don't know about last night, but yes, it's part of the territory. You understand that. It's OK. That's what makes it fun while we're all sitting around talking ball. I'm sure if I was in the room or at the end of the bar or after church – whatever your thing is – I'd probably be having the same conversation: 'Here's what he should have done,' or, 'Here's what I was thinking,' or, 'Here's what I would have done.' To me, that's what makes it fun. That's why it's sports. That's what we're supposed to be talking about. As far as the pundits' questions, I seriously think about the good ones – the good comments. I think when you get some thoughtful points that are made and you look at it and go, 'Wow, that's a good point. Let me think that through. Let's see if that would have made more sense,' or, 'Why did I do that in that situation?' The ones that aren't very thoughtful or just aren't quite as high-level, you kind of just forget about those, because you know that that's more elementary and wouldn't really be a factor. I don't think you can ever afford to get upset about it. Not to say that you don't take things … We're all people. I've been in this long enough now that I've gotten better at that, probably. I'm sure Buck – he's been in it longer than almost anybody – I'm sure he's really great about it."

With WR Steve Smith, has there ever been a time when you talk to him about controlling his emotions before a game? (Jamison Hensley)"Those are private things, in all honesty. Steve and I talk pretty much every day about a whole lot of things. I just really respect him and I really appreciate our relationship. That's probably all you really need to say about it."


QB Joe Flacco

On how tough it was to see RB Justin Forsett go:"It's tough. He was a brother. It's always tough to see guys go, especially a guy like him that I've been in the huddle with, been in battle with and has done so much for us. [He is] just a great guy, great family, all of that stuff. There are not enough good things that can be said about him, so it's definitely tough when you see a guy like that go."

On getting more chunk plays: "I think my point is we ran close to 90 plays in that game. You can look at that as a good thing, which it is, and all of that. If you're going to run 90 plays, I would like to have 700 yards of offense. That's like a game-and-a-half that we played out there. You don't want to put yourself in those situations. You want to run 70, 75 plays. You want to run a lot of plays, but I think we can find ways to be more efficient. I think that's what we're working on, and we'll see how it goes."

On if it is a fun rivalry experience to play Washington: "It's fun when you win. When you don't … After the game is over and while you're in it … It's a battle when you're out there on the field on Sunday. It is a battle. You're doing your best, and you're giving your all to go out there and just worry about the task at hand. When you get in the locker room after the game, yes, it's fun. To me, they end up all being pretty similar once you take the field on Sunday."

On if the Redskins are a rival: "It's tough. It really is tough. They're in the NFC East. It's tough to call it a rivalry. I know that, obviously, just because of the proximity of them to us and the people around here, but it's really tough to feel it."

On if the team can hone in on areas of success and improvement past the quarter mark of the season: "I think so. I think we're definitely finding our stride a little bit. We just need to put together four quarters of football. We haven't done it yet. I think we have the ability to, obviously. I definitely think we're close, and we're getting there." 

WR Steve Smith Sr.

* *

On Redskins CB Josh Norman admitting that the two had prior battles in practice when they played with the Carolina Panthers: "Josh Norman is a Pro Bowler. He is considered one of the few elite corners in the game. I just know him as 'Josh.' I remember the young guy coming in. I kind of see him as a person; I don't really pay attention to all the other stuff. I just will have fun and, as they say, 'play out my days' that are coming up and just play ball."

On if he expects it to be "vocal" on Sunday: "Well, when you talk about … When I'm on a team, they say I'm a [certain] temperature or I can get us going. I plan to play my game like I always do."

On if his emotion will inspire CB Josh Norman: "I only inspire my team. I'm not interested in inspiring other people. Obviously, by the way we lost [this past Sunday vs. Oakland], we have to focus on ourselves and make sure we start fast and finish faster."

On him playing with a lot of younger players: "I've played with a lot of people over 16 years. [They have] come and gone, but I'm still here."

On his advice to younger players:"My advice for everybody is private, not public. The only [public] advice I have for people is when they piss me off. This isn't a moment like that, so there is no need to make it about two individuals. If a center doesn't snap the ball, the lineman doesn't block and the quarterback doesn't throw, a receiver is obsolete. It is really focusing on what we need to improve on as a team. We came out there and stunk it up for about two or three quarters [vs. Oakland]. To make it about Josh [Norman] and all that stuff ... This isn't about Josh. This is about the Baltimore Ravens playing better football for four quarters in all three phases of the game."

On if the offense's slow starts are frustrating: "Yes. It is very frustrating. For one, it is frustrating to the fans. People come in there and expect us to play well, and we have not played that way."

On if the offense has the tools to be a good offense: "Yes. It is not like … It would be one thing … That is where the frustration is. If we weren't a very good team, [it wouldn't be as frustrating]. I think at times we have kind of played down or played with one hand tied behind our back at times, where we should have been playing on all cylinders going full speed and minimizing mistakes. But we haven't."

On if he has always used the stiff arm as a special move: "Technology is out there. You go check it out." (laughter)

On if he sets guys up for a stiff arm or if it is instinctive:"I don't know. I haven't thought that far [ahead]. It is just playing; it is just reaction."

OLB Terrell Suggs

On if the Redskins are a rival:"It's a fun rivalry, because they're not in our division or conference, but we're so close. There's no bad blood between these two teams. We just like to play each other. A couple of years back, we scrimmaged against each other, and we had preseason games against each other. Some people even live down there in Laurel close to them. It's not bad blood, but it's always fun when these two teams get to play actual, real games."

On what needs to improve with the pass rush based on last week's game: "They did a good job game-planning. I think we just need to do a better job of executing our game plan. We kind of knew what they were going to do with their tight ends and their backs. We just didn't execute on it. We practiced for it all week, but we just didn't capitalize on what we planned to do. Last week is last week. We're over it, but we know we can't let that happen again – especially if we want to be a good team in this division. It happened. It came and went and was very unfortunate, but we learned from it. You learn more from failure than you ever will from success. It was good we learned it early."

On if the pass rush can only get better with OLB Elvis Dumervil coming back: "Definitely. It is definitely going to get better. We need to have all of our horses racing. We'll get him to knock some rust off, get me to knock some more rust off, and we'll all just continue to work. We're not a team that gets satisfied very easy. We knew last week that team was a good team and they were going to come ready to play. We rose to the occasion, but like I said, they just made more plays than us. We have another opportunity this week with a kind of familiar foe. Like I said, with them being so close and the history of these two teams … That's the beauty of the NFL. It's a marathon, not a sprint. We get another chance at it this week."

On if it was eye-opening that RB Justin Forsett, a beloved veteran, was released: "It's always tough to accept when you see one of your friends go – one of your teammates that has been here for a while and had success here. It's always tough, but just like when the big guy left – when 92 [Haloti Ngata] left, the show must go on. We wish Justin all of the success in the world. It's very unfortunate that it didn't get to work out. It's part of the game. You guys have been around this game for a long time; you shouldn't be surprised by anything. Like I said, it's very unfortunate. We wish him the best, but the show must go on."

On Redskins CB Josh Norman:"I like him. I think all defensive players should be edgy; that's why we play defense. Some people say I talk a lot. *(laughter) *You have to like it. You have to like a player that's … He's a very fun player to watch. That's why he's had so much success. I think it's because of his swag and his confidence."

On if he looks forward to seeing Norman match up against WR Steve Smith:"I didn't even think about that! That is going to be kind of fun. Like I said, these two teams don't have bad blood. It's always exciting to see two competitors go at it. I'm not sure if it's going to be one of those Odell Beckham-Norman [games], but it should be fun."

On Redskins QB Kirk Cousins: "He did pretty good against us, too, [as a rookie in 2012], unfortunately – bastard. (laughter) He had a really good game, and he's also had success. He won a job. They took it from a guy that I think was favored to have the position. It goes to show the kid can play and they believe in him. This is a fun game. This is a fun game to play in, like I said, because they're not an AFC team and they're not in our division. They're just so close, and it's fun. It's going to be a good, fun game."

WR Mike Wallace

On his impressions of Redskins CB Josh Norman on and off the field:"I just watch him on the field. I don't really care too much about off the field. What you do is what you do. I don't care how people act off the field. He is a grown man; he can do whatever he wants. On the field, I think he is a great player. He just has a really good feel for the game. He is a smart guy. He knows how to make plays; he knows how to get to the ball. He knows how to read the defense and the quarterback's eyes. He slow-plays a lot of things and just reads the quarterback. He is a great player."

On if he sees a difference in Norman's game this year, compared to last season:"We didn't play Carolina last year, so I've never played against Josh Norman. Maybe one time. I never really played against him too much. I think he is doing a great job. I was hearing some things about him in training camp and him not really having a good training camp, but all of that is out the window. From what I've been seeing, he has done a really good job. I saw him catch an interception last week on [Browns WR] Terrelle [Pryor]; he made a great play on the ball. That is what he does. He has great ball skills and is a rangy player. I know he is going to talk, but I'm not really worried about that."

On if it has been frustrating that the offense hasn't hit on more vertical routes: "Yes. I think it is frustrating just as an offense in general. We know how many players and what type of players we have and what we can get done. We have to go out and execute better – everybody. We all have to do a better job, and I think we will get it done."

On if the offense is fixable: "I think so. I think it is just … We all just have to be better. I have to be better on certain plays. I think the game plan is good. I think we are getting to the right spots, but we just have to do it a little bit better. It is not like we are far away. I think we are right there. We just have to do it, and I think we do a really good job at practice. In the game, we just have to do a better good job of connecting on those plays."

On how encouraging is it that the Redskins have a statistically poor defense on third down: "I don't really care about it, honestly. Those are the previous weeks. That doesn't have anything to do with this upcoming game. This is a new week. They might say things about us, but that doesn't really matter, either. It is all about this week and us going down and executing. I think we had some chances last week on third down, and we probably shot ourselves in the foot with penalties. If we stop getting ourselves in long third downs, we will be able to convert them on anybody. When you start getting backed up to third-and-12, third-and-15, third-and-20, it is hard to convert those. If we stop doing that, we can do well against anybody on third down."

On if the offense needs to take more deep shots down the field: "I just think we need to score. I don't care what we do or how we get it done. It is not really my job to think about what we should do or what we shouldn't do. It is just my job to go execute. I don't care what we do, as long as we score some more points on offense."

On if connecting on deep shots could stretch the field: "Of course. That is what I like to do. I'm always going to say we should take more deep shots. At the end of the day, just because you are taking deep shots, it doesn't mean you are connecting on them. You have to be smart. You are just giving the quarterback more shots to get hit when you have to take those. You have to take everything into account. We will get it done. It is a long season, and we still have 12 more games."

On how fun it is to be around WR Steve Smith Sr.: "I love that guy. That is my guy. Steve is the type of guy who is just like me, but he is just a little crazier. I like all that type of stuff. He does the stuff I want to do, and I'm like, 'I'm not that crazy!' I'm a little crazy, but I'm not as crazy as Steve. I love it though. He is a hard worker and one of the best guys I've been around. He is a guy who has your back 150 percent, no matter the situation."

 

S Eric Weddle

On where the defense is at this point in the season:"There's always room for improvement. You look at yourself first, what I could have done better in the game, and you work on that the next week. The coaches will put the game plan together, and we have to go out and execute as a defense. Right now, the only thing that's really bothersome is our red zone [defense]. It's not so much third-down red zone defense, it's first and second down. We just haven't been able to make those types of plays to get us in third-down situations. We're going to keep battling and keep playing together. We have a great group. We play for each other. As long as we stay on the same page and keep communicating, the main thing is [to keep] all 11 on the same page. There's no reason why we can't be one of the best defenses in this league."

On the almost interception at the end of the Raiders game: "I'll probably forget that 20 years from now. (laughter) I can think of all of my missed picks – especially that one, just being able to close out the game. It's unfortunate. That's why I said I look at myself. I feel that I could have won the game or at least been in a position to help the defense. I don't look at everybody else. Everyone else knows the mistakes they had. I had mistakes, and it's just the way it is. You look at yourself first and how can I get better. How I can get better is by leading the defense and making the plays that come my way. I get one or two chances a game. That's the way it is, and I have to make them. That's the way it is. That's the pressure you put on yourself to be great. I'll make it the next time."

On what needed to be cleaned up with the red zone defense:"Just making plays on the ball. Teams aren't having much success running the ball. What they're doing is switching it up and throwing on first and second down. We just have to play better defense, play the ball better, [have] better technique and better fundamentals. Schematically, it's not so much schematics, it's just we have to play better as individuals and collectively. The calls are fine. We just have to individually play better, and we will."

On how one DB shadowing an opposing receiver affects the rest of the defense: "The corner is always looking where to line up instead of always going right and left. You have to find out where he is. You get lined up. If they go no-huddle, is he still going to find him or is he not? That can mismatch on where the other corner goes. You just have a lot of moving parts. We did that for Week 1 with Sammy [Watkins], and then we did it for, I think, the first quarter of Week 2 with [Terrelle] Pryor, because we wanted Jimmy [Smith] on him. It just messes you up more than it can be good. We have confidence in both of our corners and sub guys. We just game-plan; we'll play our defense and let the offense adjust off that."

On matching up against Redskins TE Jordan Reed:"He's very talented, elusive, fast and athletic. [He] catches the ball everywhere. He keeps moving and has a great motor. He blocks efficiently. I just can't say enough about the kid. 'Kid,' it's funny, I'm like the old guy now. (laughter) I remember playing him four years ago when he was a rookie. It's going to be fun. You always like going against great players at their positions. It brings out the best in yourself. We definitely have to have a solution for him. They have three great wideouts. They present some tough matchups for us, some challenges. That's why you play the game. That's why we prepare all week. We feel we have a great defense when all 11 of us play together. They're going to have to prepare for us and what we do defensively."

REDSKINS CONFERENCE CALLS: WEEK 5


Head Coach Jay Gruden

You guys started out 0-2, but you have won two straight now. Can you give us a sense of what the mood is in the locker room after this two-game winning streak?"We are obviously glad to win our last two, but we also understand that we haven't played our best, and we are still striving to play better. We have been lacking in certain areas that we need a lot of work on. On the flipside of that, we have done some good things. Getting two victories against two good opponents is important to get us back in the race."

Would you say there is a greater sense of confidence after these last two wins? "Yes, I think we have confidence. I don't think we ever lacked confidence. Winning obviously helps solidify that, but I think our guys are a confident group. We just need to continue to play better and work on situational football. We are lacking a little bit in certain areas."

One of those areas I wanted to ask you about was the defense's ability to stop teams on third downs? Is there something that you can put your finger on as to why that is occurring? "That would be one of the things that we need to work on. It is a combination of things. It is such a team sport that you can't put your finger on one area. It is not the coverage, sometimes it is the coverage. It is not the pass rush all the time, but sometimes there is a lack of pass rush. Sometimes it is the linebacker play. It is a combination. We just have to play better, play faster. When we have an opportunity to tackle the guy in front of the yard sticks, we have to make the tackle. We have missed tackles. We have had poor coverage. We have had poor drops. We have had poor rush at times. You have to be consistent in all areas to be good on third downs. If you are lacking in one area, they are going to get you. Teams are too good right now. We just haven't put it all together. That is what we are striving to do."

At one point, Kirk Cousins led the NFL in passing yards. How would you evaluate his progression thus far? "I think he is progressing nicely. I think there are still some areas of improvement, without a doubt. As every quarterback will say after every game, there are going to be areas where he wants to improve situational awareness, taking a sack along the way, whatever it might be. I think there are areas he will want to do better. I think he has made some nice throws. He was 21-of-27 for three touchdowns, and people were still highly critical of him. The expectations are high for Kirk, but he has done some nice things and got us two back-to-back wins."

When he has a good game like he did last week and he still gets criticized, does that bother you? "A little bit. I think that is the nature of the position. I think everybody just expects him to do great things. He has a great supporting cast, a very good offensive line, and expectations are high for him. We have to realize he is in his second year as a starting quarterback, and he is not going to be perfect. He is going to get better and better every week the more he sees, the more he does. And the more reps that he gets, the more he will continue to get better."

The Ravens have made some changes in their running back corps. What are you expecting from this new look backfield from the Ravens on Sunday? "I expect them to run the ball; that is for sure. We haven't really shown the ability to stop the run in four games. We are in the bottom third of the league in stopping the run, so I imagine we will get a heavy dose of it – inside zone, outside zones, and some power plays and all that stuff. Until we figure out ways to slow it down, we are going to see a lot of it. They have backs are very capable, and they proved that last week. It will be a great challenge for us."

How much different do you think they will be now that they have got rid of RB Justin Forsett and they are going with RB Terrance West and probably RB Kenneth Dixon on Sunday? "I don't know how much different. I don't think you change your scheme, you just continue to call what you call and what the linemen are good at blocking, whether it is outside zone or the inside zone or power plays. I don't think [Ravens offensive coordinator Marc] Trestman is going to change much. I just think he has a different guy doing it. They feel good about the guys that they have, because Justin [Forsett] was a heck of a football player. I don't think they would part ways with Justin unless they feel really good about the two backs that they have, and they have proven to be pretty darn good."

Hypothetically speaking, what goes into the decision to have a cornerback shadow one particular wide receiver? "It depends on each week. Each week, you have a different game plan. It depends on the targets for that receiver. Sometimes you don't want to travel, sometimes you do. It depends on if you are playing a lot of man-to-man or if you want to mix in some zones. If you travel all the time, you are only playing man-to-man, then you are going to have good quarterbacks working in other areas and trying to exploit you. I think if we do travel, it will be important for us to mix in our zones with our man. If we don't travel, we feel good about our corner opposite of Josh [Norman], which we do, whether it is [Bashaud] Breeland or [Quinton] Dunbar or [Greg] Toler. Those guys have played pretty well also."

What are the benefits and what are the disadvantages to shadowing one receiver with one cornerback?"There are benefits, because you get your best player on their best player if it is a highly-reputable guy. Unfortunately, Baltimore has a couple of them that are pretty darn good. I don't know if it is worth traveling or not. We will have to wait and see what the game plan brings. Some teams have one go-to guy, and it might be more of a benefit. It is a game plan thing, and each week is going to be different. There are pros and cons of doing it, and you have to get everybody on the same page, especially if it is a guy that lines up all over the place. We didn't travel much with [Steelers WR] Antonio [Brown], because he lined up in the backfield, he lined up in the slot and was all over the place. They were going no-huddle, so it was easier for us to be right and left. Some teams you can, some teams you can't. It does present challenges."

If you do decide to travel, it could end up being CB Josh Norman vs. WR Steve Smith Sr., and those are two highly-emotional players. Is that something where you have a conversation with a guy before a game, or do you worry about when you have two fiery guys going up against each other that emotions could get the best of either of them?"I don't think so. I think Josh has handled his emotions quite well so far. I know Steve is a great competitor and a great, great player. It will be great competition wherever [Smith Sr.] lines up. He has been very productive his whole career. He is tough, he makes great yards after contact, he can run deep, he can run all the short stuff, he is a great blocker. He is one of the best all-around receivers this league has seen in the last five or six or 10 years – however long he has been in the league. It is going to be a great challenge. I think Josh knows his importance to this football team and knows he can't get into any arguments and all that stuff. He will just play ball like he always does."

Do you sense a rivalry between the two football teams in Baltimore and in D.C.?"Well, we don't get a chance to play them very often. We usually play them in the preseason. I don't know how big it is, but being that you are in such close proximity, I would think there is a natural rivalry. I know the fans of both franchises are excited about this game and the players are also. We get up for every game on Sunday, but when you play a team that is so close with such a great reputation like the Baltimore Ravens have, it is an important game to us."

Last year in the preseason, you and John Harbaugh had that little tiff. Have you guys had a conversation since then? "No, not really. I think he was limping across the field a little bit, so I probably could have taken him last year. *(laughter) *I don't know, he is probably in better shape than me. I think that was just a heat of the moment thing. The referee is yelling at me to get back off the field. I was up the field, and he was all the way across the field, and I think he misinterpreted what I was yelling at the referee about. I was like, 'Why are you telling me to get back when he is all the way over here?' It was just the heat of the moment, and I have a ton of respect for coach Harbaugh and what he has done for the Baltimore Ravens and the consistency he has brought to that franchise. It is something we all strive to do."

What do you think your pre-game meeting will be like on Sunday with head coach John Harbaugh? "It will be fine. I have a ton of respect for him. I have no problems with coach Harbaugh whatsoever. That was just a fluke deal."

CB Josh Norman

On how many times he thinks he will be facing WR Steve Smith:"I don't know."

On if he would like to be matched up against WR Steve Smith:"Would I? I will do anything that they ask me to do. I really don't know. It is still early in the week, so I can't give you that information, but of course, I would like to see my old teammate."

On if WR Steve Smith Sr. is still as good as he ever was, despite his age:"Yes. His competitive drive is what makes him who he is. That is what makes him go. Obviously, you can see that on the field. He plays like a defensive player playing offense. That is what got him where he is, if you ask me."

On if he has to be cautious in the trash-talking department with WR Steve Smith Sr.: "Nope."

On if WR Steve Smith Sr. is among the best trash-talkers that he has played with:"I grew up playing him, so you kind of already know that. If you want to take the competitive drive or the ego when it comes to being the best at what he does, then yes. Just me and him going back and forth at practice every day … Trust me, I'm very well doctored in that." (laughter)

On how he would describe his practices against Smith Sr.:"They were very intense. I'm sure if you do your research, you will find out how intense they were."

On if he has followed Giants WR Odell Beckham's situation and Beckham saying he isn't having fun anymore:"Well, what can I say? It is the way the world is with the NFL. I don't think anybody will split at the same time. We just have to get through these humps, and hopefully, when we come to the next CBA, we can change a few things that is going on. I don't think anybody is satisfied with what is going on. That is just being honest, being real with the situation. You just have to deal with it and control what you can control. They hunt you, because I feel like I can take it. I don't know what to say for him. Hopefully, he will get over it and make some magic from it. I can take it though. It will keep going on, until we can do something about it. That is when you can do something – the next CBA. Hopefully we can come down and come together about some stuff."

On what kind of challenges the Ravens present: "Big plays. Big play challenges. They are a great team. They are a great unit where they do everything the right way. They play Raven-style football, and that is to be commendable by them. They do their job. They do what their coach asks them to do; they show up on tape. We have our work cut out for us."

On if he can discuss a particular incident or interaction at practice with WR Steve Smith Sr.: "Yup. But like I said, you might have to go to the archives and get that. If he wants to bring it up, I will continue to chime in. If he gives you something, I will probably come back and give you something more."

On if he and WR Steve Smith Sr. have a good relationship: "Yes, we have a good relationship. I respect Steve; I don't have anything against him. We've talked outside of football. When I saw him in Charlotte, we had a conversation. We were walking the street. Other than that, I haven't really seen him or talked too much about him. I know he was trying to do the on-air show when he got hurt last year. Now he is healthy this year, and he came back. The thought was that he was going to retire, but he came back another year. He is just doing what he has always been doing since he has been playing ball – making plays and going out there and doing his little dance that he always does. I think it is super funny. He did it in Carolina, too, he just continued to do it there [in Baltimore]. His playmaking ability speaks for itself."

On what the Washington defense has to do to take the next step:"Details and assignments. Details and assignments. Not blowing plays that are right in front of us to make. It is just little things. The little things are what is killing us right now. We capitalize on that, and I think we can help with some of the struggles that we are dealing with, which we will. We are going to get it corrected this week. It is going to be a great week to start that off. In 30 minutes, we are going to go out here and practice and get some stuff corrected. We can't allow that to continue and keep happening. Of course we are ready to face you guys. We have to pick our game up."

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